Diane Leipper #772
In WBCCI there are two basic types of membership. The primary membership category is to join through a Unit. The other category is to join as a member at large (MAL). MAL's are not affiliated with any Unit and they do not have a vote in WBCCI business matters.
I have been a member of three different Units and a member of my current Unit for over 10 years. I plan on staying a member for the foreseeable future. My current Unit went through some rough times but with the assistance of some dedicated members, is now a healthy and growing group. Being a member of this Unit is like being part of a family. The Unit is like our immediate family. The Region and National organization are our relatives. As a member of our Unit (or any Unit) we are not restricted from attending the rallies or events of other Units and many of our members have done so. We have also had visitors from other Units and Regions attend our Unit functions. Instead of closing us off from participation in a global community, being a Unit member expands our opportunities and creates a stronger common link. No matter where we wander, who we visit, or how long it may be between our participation in our local Unit activities, it is always nice to come home. Our Airstream family always welcomes us and is anxious to hear about our adventures. While some of us are traveling, others keep the home fires burning. Our Unit rallies, which is our priority, provide the local camaraderie and the fun we all enjoy. Our Unit rallies are the glue that keeps us enthused and excited about being Airstreamers and members of WBCCI.
My grandparents belonged to several Units. This provided them with a home no matter what part of the country they were currently in. Their membership and participation was a way to support the various Units. That didn't prevent them from traveling on their own, or with other Airstream friends and enjoying other events and activities with their Airstream.
To me, the advantages of belonging to a Unit far outweigh the advantages of any other option. There are enough Units out there. One is bound to fit anybodies particular needs and interests. It is just a matter of being open minded, of exploring, and experimenting. If you are looking for a rebuff or cold shoulder, you'll probably find it although I think that is a lot rarer than some might be led to believe. Unit participation is a two way street and your experience is partly what you choose to make it.
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