Marsha Kalakay and Joyce Nolin-Capman believe their Rotary District 6330 Passport Club may be the future of Rotary. Rather than relying on in-person gatherings like traditional Rotary Clubs, Passport’s members hookup online. It is, they insist, so much more convenient. “Many of us left Rotary or were preparing to leave because we just couldn’t make it fit into our lifestyles anymore,” says Marsha, the former president of Passport, who lives in Davison, Michigan. Marsha left her prior Rotary club because of a job change, and Joyce was considering leaving because of scheduling issues. “Rotary is our life and we are Rotarians at heart and it was a very difficult decision to make. When I left my former club, I went a couple of years without Rotary and missed it terribly.”

Established in Dec. 2018, 6330 Passport Rotary’s members are primarily based in Southern Ontario in Canada and Eastern Michigan in the United States. “I was told about this new cub forming and how it was going to be so much different from traditional Rotary,” Marsha says. “You weren’t going to get handcuffed into being on committees and having to donate all this time working on heavy duty projects.” Joyce, the club’s current president is getting ready to spend a few months in Florida. “I’ll be able to participate in the Passport Club just as easily from there as I could from my basement at home. I think Rotary is really known for being people of action and that was actually our theme a few years ago. We all have service in our blood and with Passport we are able to do our own thing and still feel like we are part of a group.”

Marsha and Joyce, who lives in Lapeer, Michigan, say Passport is more about individual members setting and reaching individual goals. “It’s a different approach,” Joyce says. “Our club goal is that all our individuals reach their goals.” Members are expected to either donate their time or knowledge or money up to 40 hours per year, which members find it is very doable. “If every club member does that, then there is a lot of good stuff happening.” Some Rotary Clubs have been negatively affected by COVID-19 in terms of being able to raise funds as they did prior to the pandemic. Not so much for the 6330 Passport Rotary Club. “I think the future of Rotary has to be flexible now,” Joyce says. “We were a little bit ahead of the game when COVID-19 hit because we were already virtual. We were still able to meet online and that was normal for us.”

In 2020, 6330 Passport Rotary Club ran a successful face shield project; delivering more than 1,000 face shields to frontline workers in Ontario. “We also did an unbelievable project for the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan raising more than $9,000 to feed the needy on the American side,” Marsha says. “And we picked up two new members in the process!”