One of Australia's oldest volunteer groups is celebrating a significant milestone in Canberra.
Canberra Rotaract, a community service organisation led by young adults, celebrates 50 years on Saturday, May 1.
Canberra Rotaract is the oldest Rotaract club in Australia - and one of the oldest clubs in the world.
Rotaract is similar to Rotary but generally targets younger adults, with more than 10,000 Rotaract clubs across the globe.
Canberra Rotaract president Shawn Wilson said 50 years was an incredible milestone for a club made up entirely of young volunteers.
"A lot of people still think of Rotary as a group of friendly retirees raising money at a sausage sizzle," Mr Wilson said.
"I think many people would be surprised by the diversity of the organisation and just how many young people are volunteering and giving back to the community through Rotary and Rotaract. The diversity of our service club has always been it's greatest strength and is fundamental to it's longevity."
Canberra Rotaract was chartered in 1971 and, like Rotary clubs across the ACT, has four key areas of focus: community service, international service, professional development and social connection.
Like many organisations, Canberra Rotaract faced challenges during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, with in-person meetings moved online and the club forced to explore new ways of engaging with members and continuing its projects.
One of those projects, Music for Dementia, has just been nominated for the 2021 Rotaract Outstanding Project Award for the Asia-Pacific Region.
Canberra Rotaract purchased and donated 50 Music for Dementia headsets for residents of three local aged care facilities in the ACT - with plans to roll out more.
The club has also recently funded its sixth consecutive scholarship for Pegasus Riding for the Disabled, based in Holt.
Canberra Rotaract will celebrate 50 years with a trivia fundraiser on Saturday night. Fourteen past, present and future presidents of the organisation will be in attendance.
For more information about Canberra Rotaract including its 50th year fundraiser, find Canberra Rotaract on Facebook at www.facebook.com/canberrarotaract
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