A Word from the President - Fall 2017

(Translated by Johanne Boucher, trad. A., Montréal)

 

Dear members,

The Holiday Season is already upon us and shopkeepers do all they can to attract us. But, this season should be a time for everyone to celebrate with relatives and remember good times spent together without being too nostalgic about it all.

It is when visiting with family members and dear friends that we are reminded of the joy of life. It is also an opportunity to talk about the Robitaille family association and expand your network of relatives throughout America and Europe. Your Association needs to recruit more members and it is often by talking to one another that we can attract new members.

All through this year, we have been communicating with you via the newsletter Les Robitailleries and other information letters which were not published as often as we had hoped. We also have to adapt to new means of reaching our membership and this is why we use Facebook to relay information. To receive our Facebook posts, please join the group called “Association des familles Robitaille” at www.facebook.com/groups/famillesrobitaille/.

We also have started digitizing our old issues of Les Robitailleries and posting them on our website. The first 15 issues are already online and more will be added throughout 2018. Visit www.robitaille.org regularly for updates. Preparing the newsletter for the online platform means we need to take the time to correct spelling errors and other basic info and sometimes modify the photographs. We have found a number of original photographs that are now used to replace the ones previously published in order to have better results.

The members of the Board of directors and the Commanders of the Association wish you all a Happy Holidays.

Peace and Good Health for everyone in 2018!

Your president,
Marc Robitaille

A Word from the President - Spring 2017

(Translated by David Robitaille, Vancouver)

Greetings Fellow Members

2017 – A Year Focusing on Change and Cohesion

Winter may not be over yet, but it has made its mark; whether through the loss of relatives or friends who were unable to make it to spring, or by the emergence of health problems for some of us following an interminable winter. But, to honor our ancestors, we must continue on our journey and set an example for those who follow us.

Over the past several months, your Association has put considerable energy into planning for the coming years. To this end, changes to our by-laws and regulations will be presented at our next general meeting. Out Association is active and alive despite a small but continuing decrease in our membership. All our projects are carried out by volunteers. We need your support through concrete actions, whether it be the renewal of your annual membership or suggestions for activities and topics of interest to all. We invite you to become proactive and in that way help create vitality in our Association and encourage others to act like you.

Closer to home, the Federation of Quebec Family Associations has suffered a 50 percent cut in government funding in the past two years, and has suspended its operations while seeking funding to resume operations. The Federation acts as the spokesperson and supporter for associations like ours and provides visibility and support for them.

Despite talks and promises of grants, no payments were made in 2016. I attended the annual general meeting of the Federation with René on March 25 to learn how the Federation plans to operate in the future, as many of us are wondering if we should leave the organization or not.

The Board of Directors of the Federation had to make many difficult decisions before it was too late. They let all their employees go, except one, and paid everyone what they were owed. The files were assigned to volunteers, and agreements were made with sub-contractors to continue offering the same services as before.

The Federation is aware that it must review its mission statement and that a new Board of Directors will be responsible for setting objectives, clarifying the financial situation, and finding new funding sources. 

On the other hand, we learned that the Federation has contacts and relationships with some twenty active partners including government agencies, archives, libraries, history and genealogy societies, as well as the francophone Canadian, Franco-American, French, and Belgian communities which could be very useful to associations like ours, if they were better known and better used. A strong Federation needs strong associations,

I wish to thank all the generous people who, for many years have contributed to making the Robitaille Family Association both credible and well known. This recognition is shared by all those who engage actively in our Association as active members by participating in our activities and by offering their opinions on how the Association can improve.

May the light and warmth of spring be with us as we strive to realize our fondest hopes!

Your president,
Marc Robitaille

 

A Word from the President - Spring 2016

Dear members,

(Translation by Johanne Boucher, trad.A., Montréal)

I hope you have been well throughout the winter, once again. Some, I’m sure found it more challenging than those who have been able to go south and enjoy the sun.

The Association des familles Robitaille also survived the winter, but its future is bleak. The main factor impacting our Association’s ability to function is the reduction in membership combined with the growing cost of printing and mailing our newsletter Les Robitailleries. This is why our Association finally decided to go digital and issue no 81 has been delivered via Internet to most our members. In general, all went well and we received many positive comments which allowed us to establish a dialog with our members. There is still some tweaking to be done, and we are convinced we can continue to offer an interesting and user-friendly newsletter. Our main concern now is to make sure we have the correct email addresses and that you notify us when your address changes.

Some members of the Board are working to setup a Facebook page to remain in contact with all those who have an affective or bloodline connection with the Robitaille families. I sincerely hope that this social media will forge closer ties between members and even with non-members. Do not hesitate to participate and to make it known to your friends, relatives and members of your extended families.

A second factor will have a short-term impact on our ability to move forward, and it is the lack of succession at the Board of directors which is composed of nine members. We’ve been only eight members for several years now, and one of us will not renew his mandate in June. This shows a critical lack of succession and even a waning interest in sitting on the Board of directors.

One of the ways you can show your support for our current Board members’ involvement, is to come and attend our general annual assembly. It will be held on Sunday, June 19, at the historical site of the old Vincennes mill in Beaumont. This location is a showcase for the charm of this region. Thus, we are inviting all of you to come, take the time to talk with us on the future of our Association, share your projects and socialize with other members.

 

Again, I hope to greet you in person in Beaumont, on June 19!

 

Marc Robitaille, president 

A Word from the President - Fall 2016

(Translation by Johanne Boucher, trad.A., Montréal)

After our annual general meeting (AGM) last June and after yet another meeting to elect the members of the Board of directors, we have voted for the status quo for the coming year in order to ensure continuity as the Association is facing major changes.

Here is the 2016-2017 Board of directors:

  • Marc Robitaille, president
  • Sonia Robitaille, vice-president
  • Micheline Dussault, secretary
  • Paul Robitaille, treasurer

The other Board members are:

  • Louise Robitaille-Roy
  • Marjolaine Michaud
  • Pierre Robitaille and
  • Florent Robitaille.

We extend our grateful thanks to these dedicated individuals.

This past summer was a busy period for all of us. In August, the Board members, our Commanders, plus a few members involved in the digital transition project, all met for a brainstorming session on the future of our Association. René Robitaille (St-Lambert) facilitated the discussion using a model that was published in the Journal Les Affaires (business newspaper) to help stagnating SMEs grow again.

First, we discussed the current state of affairs: little interest in succeeding to current Board members; slow but steady decline of the membership; information is provided to members but not everyone can access it; limited number of visits to our Website, though it has been revamped; the Familles Robitaille Facebook group seems to be thriving; our financials are sound; we will stop publishing a paper version of our newsletter Les Robitailleries on January 1, 2018, but how can we reach our members who do not have Internet; there are no examples of associations that have successfully implemented changes and no model at the Federation level.

The discussion that ensued, as you will read in the article that reports the results of this exercise, concluded that the need to work with our members and their families in the following manner: via our Facebook group, you can feature your region, the members of your family and their activities, refraining from gossiping, naturally. Maybe a Robitaille relative acted bravely, reached a milestone, had an important business success…

You can judge by yourself how entertaining or informative your story can be, all we want is that we get to know each other better.

In the coming months, we will try and setup lunchtime conferences or talks on various topics. We want to have a dynamic association and it is through your participation that we will achieve our goal.

I thank you in advance for your cooperation.

Your president for 2016-2017,
Marc Robitaille

A Word from the President - Winter 2016

Hello one and all,

(Translation by Johanne Boucher, trad.A., Montréal)

In 2015, we’ve seen human tragedies unfold and the overarching need to unite to support their victims. Social media became a source of comfort. On a smaller scale, our Association thrives to maintain the ties of solidarity through our ancestry. These ties have helped preserve our personal and family values to this day. We have a duty to keep those ties and values strong and it is by joining forces that we will succeed.

You’ve read this before, but I want to reinforce the fact that the Association des familles Robitaille will make growing use of social media and Internet. By going digital, and with your contributions, we hope to maintain and even grow our ancestral ties. We wish that the transition will prove beneficial and we invite you to share your comments and suggestions with us. We need your involvement to help us help you bridge the technology gap.

We wish that 2016 keeps you in good health and brings you surprises and happiness.

 

Marc Robitaille, president