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Impact Report - Findings | Extract 1

Updated: Aug 23, 2022

Below are extracts from the findings of the Impact Report created by Ruth Jackson for RTBI

First Impressions

Contrary to common perceptions, Round Table cannot be characterised as a "Boys Drinking Club" or an "Alternative Masonic Lodge". Over the course of my research, although I have been made aware of Beer Festivals being part of a number of fund raising calendars and pubs and restaurants being used for events, gatherings and friendly meetings, drinking and alcohol are not defining features of Table activity. Equally there is no reason, in my view to deny the community and social nature of pubs and restaurants in the fabric of our communities and within Table culture.

Social Connection & Friendship

Without exception the individual members with whom I spoke were extremely clear about the fundamental and significant impact that being part of the Table had had on their lives. This was typically referenced in relation to the friendships and camaraderie that they experience as a Round Table member. That they have friends (many joined because of a lack of friendship in their lives or the difficulty in making new friends when moving to new areas). That they are part of a 24/7 community in the real world and digitally via WhatsApp groups, Facebook, etc. That this local connection in turn is bonded to regional, national and international networks meaning they feel supported and have a sense of belonging wherever they go. This kind of security of connection is becoming increasingly rare for men in our society and in my view is one of RTBI’s most significant characteristics and an area of highest impact.

Personal Development

Although not immediately evident when exploring stories through conversation, the value of the Table in supporting personal and professional development amongst members is substantial. Adapting my approach after this area of value emerged, there was a universal agreement around the role that Tables and their members have played in supporting younger Tablers to develop a whole range of personal and practical skills. However, interestingly, this skill development was further enhanced within Tables as members matured and were given the opportunity to teach, mentor and coach newer members. Obvious examples are around presentation and public speaking skills as well as organisational and logistics skills but extended much further at times to softer listening and support skills as well as things like baking and health and safety.

Although I heard of examples of encouragement to change career or find work this appears to be a relatively subtle theme rather than explicit professional guidance. Instead, the mix of activities and events and the space to develop new ideas with a tangible sense of it being ok to get it wrong, makes for a safe and supported learning space.

Again, this aspect of Table is not one the public might recognise and yet is having a significantly positive impact on members and has the potential to attract people to it, as part of its wider offer.

Round Table (RTBI) is a young man / men's club for those aged between 18 and 45. RTBI supports charities, the local community and its individual members through friendship and brotherhood. As part of the Round Table Family, RTBI is an inclusive organisation open to all individuals no matter their age or gender identification. To find out more visit our FAQs page or Contact Us.



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