Join the Rotary Friendship Exchange to Italy! May 21 – 30 2015

 Family of Rotary  Comments Off on Join the Rotary Friendship Exchange to Italy! May 21 – 30 2015
Feb 012015

The Rotary Friendship Exchange team is busy planning and finalizing details for the RFE trip to Italy!  We will visit Milan and Northern Italy, including the Mantua and Sabbioneta areas from May 21–30, 2015!   It promises to be a fun and exciting trip!   In addition to the normal RFE fun and activities, the World’s Fair opens in Milan on May 1, so we will also be able to experience that event!   The Italians will visit us August 16-24.   But you better hurry!   There are only a couple of openings left on our team!  For more information, please contact Cal McRae at 843-200-0904 or

Here are some links to find out more about the World’s Fair and the Mantua and Sabbioneta UNESCO World Heritage site.


Apply NOW for Rotary Friendship Exchange Trip to Italy

 1st Row Left Box, Appearance Controls, Family of Rotary  Comments Off on Apply NOW for Rotary Friendship Exchange Trip to Italy
Sep 062014
The RFE team is in the initial stages of planning a Friendship Exchange with Italy, Rotary District 2041!  This is in the northern part of Italy, including the city of Milan. The team from District 7770 will visit Italy from May 21 – 30, 2015, and the team from District 2041 will visit South Carolina August 21 – 30,  2015.
The recent Exchange with South Africa, District 9370, produced memories of a lifetime, and this Exchange with Italy promises to be as fun and exciting, if not even more so!
If you have any interest in joining the team, or if you would like more information, please contact Cal McRae at


Rotary Friendship Exchange to South Africa a Success

 2nd Row Center Box, Appearance Controls, Family of Rotary  Comments Off on Rotary Friendship Exchange to South Africa a Success
May 152014

The Rotary Friendship Exchange team has returned from a fun, exciting, adventurous, and educational trip to South Africa!

Our South African friends, who visited with us last October, returned the favor and invited us over to spend two weeks with them. What a wonderful and enlightening time it turned out to be!
It’s a beautiful country, and we visited with several Rotary Clubs, visited numerous of their service projects, enjoyed much fellowship, met many new Rotarian friends, spent several nights in a game reserve, saw many beautiful sights and wildlife, and had the trip of a lifetime!
Those attending were Larry and Jerri Meisner of the Sea Island Club in Beaufort, Alison Dailey and her niece Lauren Dailey of the East Cooper Breakfast Club in Mt. Pleasant, and Cal and Billie McRae of the North Charleston Breakfast Club.
I’ve included some pictures below to share some of our wonderful adventures. If you would like to know about more about Rotary Friendship Exchange or have someone talk to your club, please contact Cal McRae, cal.mcrae3(at)gmail(dot)com843-200-0904.

Below: Banner exchange with Westville Rotary Club, Westville, South Africa. Pictured L-R: Billie McRae, Alison Dailey, Cal McRae, Lauren Dailey, Sophia McManus, Youth Exchange Student, Cecil Turner, Club President, Larry Meisner, and Jerri Meisner.

banner exchange

Below: Visiting the Aswan Temple, which welcomes all faiths, with members of the Chatsworth High Noon Rotary Club, Chatsworth, Durban, South Africa.   L-R: Paul Pooblan, Vasanthee Moodley, President High Noon Rotary Club,  Cal McRae, Larry Meisner, Jerri Meisner, Lauren Dailey, Alison Dailey, Akela Ramchunder, and Billie McRae.

aswan temple

Below:  After we were given a tour of the school, Lauren Dailey is presented with a Zulu Warrior Headdress by the principal of the Enxolobeni Primary School. The principal is a member of the Hibiscus Coast Rotary Club, and the school is one of the Hibiscus Coast Club’s service projects.


Below:   We spent four nights in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi and St. Lucia game reserves.  It was an amazing adventure and we saw outstanding wildlife with our unbelievable Rotarian hosts / guides, Ken and Heather Gillings, Westville Rotary Club, and Ian and Andrena Foster, Kloof Rotary Club!
We were lucky to catch this rare sighting of a herd of elephants with their young crossing the river!
Hippos enjoying the river, a curious giraffe, and white Rhinos giving us the evil eye!
Below: Visiting the Never Never Land Creche (Preschool), one of the service projects of the Hilton-Howick Rotary Club. The student’s mothers prepared a meal of local dishes, and we took cupcakes for a special treat for the students. Alison Dailey, East Cooper Breakfast Rotary pictured.


Below: Members of 6 Rotary clubs, Westville Rotary Club, Kloof Rotary Club, Hilton-Howick Rotary Club, Sea Island Rotary Club, East Cooper Breakfast, and North Charleston Breakfast Rotary Club,  venture up the Sani Pass route in 4 Wheel vehicles from South Africa across the border into Lesotho. Altitude is 9400 Feet. The highest bar / restaurant in Africa sits atop the mountain. A good time was had by all !!


Rotary Friendship Exchange Team Leaves for South Africa on March 9, 2014

 Making Connections, Serving Community  Comments Off on Rotary Friendship Exchange Team Leaves for South Africa on March 9, 2014
Mar 052014

The Rotary Friendship Exchange team is busy packing their bags and getting ready for their upcoming trip to South Africa! They will rendezvous in Durban, South Africa on Sunday, March 9 and spend two weeks exploring South Africa, learning their culture and country, visiting with six different Rotary clubs, seeing some of their service projects, meeting new Rotarians and renewing old friendships with the Rotarians who visited here in October 2013.

A busy and exciting itinerary has been planned by the South Africans. From general sightseeing to overnighting in Hluhluwe / iMfolozi game reserve and visiting the Nelson Mandela capture site, it promises to be a fun, exciting, and educational experience!

Those attending will be Larry and Jerri Meisner from the Sea Island Rotary Club in Beaufort, Alison and Lauren Dailey from the East Cooper Breakfast Rotary, Mount Pleasant, and Cal and Billie McRae from the North Charleston Breakfast Rotary, North Charleston.

We will share some pictures along the way so you can see some of what we are experiencing!

Yours in Rotary,

Cal McRae

South African RFE Team Meets DG Lou Mello

 Family of Rotary, Global Impact  Comments Off on South African RFE Team Meets DG Lou Mello
Oct 162013

south african teamDistrict 9320 South Africa’s Rotary Friendship Exchange team attended East Cooper Breakfast Rotary Club’s meeting on Tuesday, October 15. While there, they exchanged banners with District Governor Lou Mello and gave a short presentation on their District in South Africa. Situated along the Eastern Cape, District 9320 includes lovely beaches, multiple game preserves and industry.

Rotarian Cal McRae of the North Charleston Breakfast Rotary Club will lead District 7770’s team to South Africa in March 2014.

Pictured: South Africa Rotarians Ken and Heather Gillings, 7770 District Governor Lou Mello, South Africa Rotarian Prem Lutchman, and South Africa Rotarians Ian and Andrena Foster.


Oct 152013

Rotary District 9320 South Africa Eastern Cape is visiting District 7770 through Rotary Friendship Exchange. The five member team is spending their first week in the Charleston area, recent recipient of the Top City in the United States by Conde Nast Travel. They will leave Charleston to visit Beaufort, Hilton Head and Savannah before returning to South Africa on October 27.

Their first exchange function was a walking tour of downtown Charleston, hosted by the East Cooper and North Charleston Breakfast Rotary Clubs.

charleston sc city hall

The South African Friendship Exchange team with Michael T. Maher in front of Charleston City Hall.

The team learns about Charleston architecture.

The team learns about Charleston architecture.

The South African team are avid bird watchers. Here they are catching a bird unawares in Philadelphia Alley.

The South African team are avid bird watchers. Here they are catching a bird unawares in Philadelphia Alley.





South Africans to Visit District 7770 Through Rotary Friendship Exchange

 Global Impact, Making Connections  Comments Off on South Africans to Visit District 7770 Through Rotary Friendship Exchange
Sep 252013

Rotarians  and  their  Ann’s  from  three  Clubs  in  the  Natal  area of  the  New  District 9370  will  be  visiting  District 7770 South  Carolina  on  a  Rotary  Friendship  Exchange  Tour  from  the  13th  to  26th  October  2013. They will be hosted by the North Charleston Breakfast Rotary Club, the East Cooper Breakfast Rotary Club, and the Sea Island Rotary Club.



Ken and Heather Gillings are both fourth generation South Africans. Heather’s forefathers (the Atherstones) were 1820 Settlers and she is of English and Irish descent.

Ken’s maternal forefathers arrived in Colonial Natal in 1845, eventually settled in the north and began farming near a village named Dannhauser. His paternal family originated in England and Italy.

Both are members of the Rotary Club of Westville, District 9270 (on the east coast of South Africa).  Heather is an active Rotary Ann and Ken serves on the Club’s Foundation Committee and the District RFE Committee. He was awarded a Paul Harris fellowship before he joined Rotary, for his contribution to heritage in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal.

They live in Pinetown near the coastal city of Durban in KwaZulu-Natal.



Ian  was  born  in  England a  bit  after  the  Second  World  War  and  his  parents  immigrated  to  South  Africa  when  he  was  8  months  old.  Andrena  was  born  in  Scotland  a  few  years  after  Ian  and  moved  to  Zambia  at  the  age  of  5.   Later at 12  years  old  her  family  moved  to  South  Africa.

Both  have  been  involved  with  charity  work  for  the  past  30  years .  Initially  with  Lions  International  and  the  past  17  years  in  Rotary. Ian  has  done  Four  stints   as  President, The  last with  The  Rotary  Club  of  Kloof , ( Near  Durban ). Ian  was  District  Membership  Chairman,   is  on various  District  Committees  and is  now  Assistant  Governor  District  9370.



Prem  was  born, grew  up  and  spent  most  of  his  life  in  the  small  town  of  Glencoe  near  Dundee  in  Northern Natal , South  Africa.  After  School he  qualified  as  a  School Teacher  and then  worked  42 years for  the  Department of  Education.   Prem  retired  3  years  ago  as  a Principal of  a High  School  in  Dundee.

He  is  involved  in many  Community  based  projects, Child  Welfare, Old  Aged  Homes, Rural  Community  projects, and  is  a  Rotarian  in  the  Rotary  Club  of  Dundee.  He  recently  assisted  on  a  Rotary  Dental  Week  programme  in  Swaziland.  Prem  earlier  this  year  returned  from a  Rotary  Exchange  Friendship  Programme  in  India.  Prem   has  travelled  extensively  throughout  South  Africa  and  abroad.  He  has  also  visited  Zambia, Swaziland, Lesotho, United  Kingdom, Egypt, Europe, The  Middle  East, New  Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong,  India  and  Mauritius.




Dec 052012

Members of District 7770 and their partners have a unique opportunity to visit South Africa with Friendship Exchange. We have a trip scheduled to visit District 9270, the eastern cape of South Africa, and we are looking for three to four Rotary couples to complete  our team.

Members of the team will go on safari and will be shown the highlights of the terrain, the food and the hospitality of the eastern cape of South Africa.

Exchange details:

Outbound to South Africa: 12 – 25 May 2013

Inbound to South Carolina: 13 – 26 October 2013

Team Members Needed: three to four Rotary couples

Cost: Rotarians pay for their trip, but South African Rotarians provide lodging, some transportation and some meals

Click to download Application Form: RFE SOUTH AFRICA APPLICATION

Please direct questions about this exchange to District RFE Chair Andra Watkins at andra (at) positusonline (dot) com, or call her at 843  870 0888.

© Copyright 2013-2018 by Rotary District 7770 Rotary International District 7770, Eastern South Carolina