Rotary brings two worlds closer

TAIPEI may be a world away from Yamba, but this week members of both communities united under Rotary's banner of friendship.

Five women from Taiwan are in the Lower Clarence as part of a five week Rotary Group Study Exchange (GSE).

It's a whirlwind tour that will take the women to rotary clubs and towns from the Gold Coast to Maclean.

Yesterday members of the Yamba club hosted the visitors and showed them the sites, including a ferry ride to Iluka.

“It is has been so nice to have a walk along the beach and it's so beautiful to see all of the plants,” GSE team leader Victoria Chen said.

“It's really unique. We are really getting a good education.”

Ms Chen is the only Rotary member on the exchange. In Taiwan she works as a teacher at the Northern Taiwan University in the science and technology department.

The other women are also professionals - three working in central government positions and one in design.

Yamba Rotary Club President Yannick Martin said the exchange program was an intensive way to learn about different cultures.

“It's an amazing and wonderful program because of what they go home with and what they learn in that time,” Mrs Martin said.

Although Taiwan and Australia have similar populations, Taiwan is about half the size of Tasmania.

Ms Chen said the biggest differences she noticed between both countries was the vast amounts of open space in Australia.

The Yamba Rotarians were treated to a special Taiwanese feast last night, cooked by their guests. Today they will start the day with a swim at Main Beach before they head off to Maclean to experience the Scottish Town.

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