Sunday, February 19, 2017

Rotary Club of Thimphu’s First Annual Conference Successfully Concluded

What was originally planned as the 9th Annual District Conference of the RI District 3292, ended up as the RC Thimphu’s maiden annual conference. From a staggering 2,400++ registrants to the Conference, the final head count for the club level conference stood at 160 (excluding 15 from Bhutan), including spouses. Fifteen (15) countries were represented spanning across 8 Rotary International Districts comprised of 37+1 Clubs.

All the participants were suitably impressed that a new and minuscule club with only 19 Members could organize the hosting of such a large gathering. Everything was timed perfectly – right from the reception at Paro International Airport to check-in at the hotels and the Conference itself. The international participants were impressed with the line up of speakers, led by our Honorable Prime Minister who was the keynote speaker at the event. Every Conference session was perfectly timed to the last nano second – the sessions started and ended exactly as scheduled – no hiccups!

The Rotary Club of Thimphu presented 12 project ideas to the participants for collaboration – in areas that included education, health, agriculture etc.

One Club in Malaysia announced support for 3 scholarships in vocational training - The Rotary Club of Melawati.

Another from the same country promised to take up the construction of hostel for Kagtong Primary School in remote Zhemgang costing US$25,000.00.

Yet another Club donated US$1,500.00 to cover the cost of purchase of farm equipment – for one of the three Youth Cooperatives engaged in agriculture farming.

In the coming months other participating clubs will start to look at our proposals and commit their sponsorship of some of the projects that were proposed.

Our Keynote Speaker – Hon’ble Prime Minister of Bhutan
Dignitaries at the Conference – Hon’ble Chief Justice of Bhutan and Hon’ble Minister for Home & Cultural Affairs posing with Rotarian KK Looi and friends from Malaysia.

Photo shoot - Hon'ble Prime Minister pose with the participants, following the inauguration of the Conference
A throng of Rotarians from around the glob: 7 RI Districts, 38 Clubs and 108 Rotarians

Some Club Members pose with Rotarians from Malaysia. On the extreme left is Rtn. KK Looi who put together his group from among Clubs under District 3300 in Malaysia.
Yours truly with the team leader Rtn. Marian Victor Popa from the Rotary Club of Bucharest “Octo”, Romania. Note the interesting traditional costume he and his spouse are wearing. On the extreme right is Rtn. Rinzi Om, RC Thimphu’s Sargent-at-Arms.
Yours truly with the contingent from Romania
Club President Rtn. Tsewang Rinzing, the Club’s Director of Community Service Rtn. Dawa Penjore and Club Secretary Rtn. Yeshey Dorji with the 7-members contingent from the Rotary Club of Melawati, Malaysia. This Club has confirmed the award of scholarships for three Bhutanese youth - for vocational training in an institute in Malaysia
One of the participants celebrating her birthday at the City Hotel, Thimphu
While we were busy with our club Conference, two of our Members were attending the RI District 3292 Annual Conference in Kathmandu. Rtn. Kesang Tshomo, Director of Memberships and Rtn. Yeshey Nidup, Club Treasurer, represented our Club in the Conference, to show solidarity. They are seen here with the incumbent District Governor Rtn. Jaya Rajya Laxmi Shah and incoming DG Sanjay Giri (2017-2018).
The last two months was a very tiring period. I had to oversee the arrangement and preparation for the Conference. Not to say that I had sleepless nights – but I certainly had very little sleep. Thankfully it is over and I can now relax a bit – until I run to Zhemgang to initiate another of RC Thimphu’s project – solar fencing of farmlands in Kheng Nimshong village - all of 7 KMs.

Throughout the Conference, every one else spoke but I remained resolutely mute. But yesterday at the dinner at the Le Meridien Hotel in Thimphu I decided to break my silence for a while - to quote the American multi-billionaire philanthropist, Mr. Warren Buffett:

“What money you have in excess of your need is useless money

I supplemented it by saying:

“There is one sure way of making that useless money into useful money. Give it to those who need it.”

You should have no doubt who I was hinting at☺☺


  1. Congratulations to the President, Secretary and officials of Rotary Club of Thimphu for successfully organizing the first club level conference. It was perfectly organized with wonderful participants and great speakers.

    Hats off to Yeshey Dorji for being the person behind this success. And of course Tashi Delek to the members of Rotary Club of Thimphu.

  2. I hope with the end of high profile conference cum my dream of Mawongpa water solution treatment would pave its way to hear out into international ear through your generous kinds. I hope now you would regain back to your normal goodnight sleep la. Hoping to hear a positive reply soon.

  3. Dear Sancha,
    One of the project proposals is the clean and safe drinking water for school children. Let us see how reception the Rotary community will be ...

  4. Glad that Rotary Club of Thimphu’s First Annual Conference turned out to be successful. I liked reading through this. Anyways, I also have to host a conference and currently trying to find out the best meeting space San Francisco for that. Hopefully will find one soon.

  5. Yeshey,
    Your dedication and your humility is commendable. Well done! Looking forward to seeing you in Malaysia one day.
    RC Melawati
    D3300 Malaysia.