Archive | October, 2014

Five ways to take action on World Polio Day

31 Oct

Rotary Voices

141021_WPDgraphicBy Rotary staff

Join us in making history. When we finally rid the world of polio, it will only be the second time that a human disease has been eradicated (the first being smallpox). And we are “this close” to ending polio. Here are five easy ways you can get involved for World Polio Day, 24 October.

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Why not spice up your next installation dinner?

31 Oct

Rotary Voices

Participants pack sack lunches during the event at Harvesters, a Kansas City area food bank. Participants pack sack lunches during the event at Harvesters, a Kansas City area food bank.

By Jerry Venters, a  member of the Rotary Club of Kansas City Plaza

I’ve been a member of Rotary since 1989, and I have never heard of or participated in a changing of the guard ceremony like the one held in District 6040, Missouri, USA, this year. It had more energy and enthusiasm, participation, and fun than any I’ve attended!

The district governor for 2014-15, Cassy Venters (full disclosure here: my wife) began thinking two years earlier about how she could make the event different and uphold the Rotary ideal of Service Above Self. She chose to make it a service project with our local food bank, Harvesters – The Community Food Network.

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We all have a part to play in ending polio

30 Oct

Rotary Voices

Marc Prevost on a training ride. Marc Prevot on a training ride.

By Marc Prevot, Rotary staff

As far back as I can remember, there were always bikes in my home. Since there is no better way to explore new neighborhoods or new cities, I’ve been on bicycles most of my life.

When the opportunity to be part of Rotary’s team for El Tour de Tucson came along, I jumped at it without a second thought. Being an avid cyclist, I already ride several times a week, but this gives me a far worthier motivation than adding miles to my bike.

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Honoring Salk and Sabin by finishing the job of ending polio

27 Oct

Rotary Voices

Dr. John L. Sever discusses the origins of PolioPlus in this video recorded last year.

The following is an excerpt of an address given by Dr. John L. Sever, vice chair of Rotary’s International PolioPlus Committee, to the Innovations in Healthcare Symposium 23 October in New York. The symposium was held to honor Jonas Salk and Albert Sabin on World Polio Day and the 100th anniversary of Salk’s birth.

I had the pleasure of knowing both Dr. Salk and Dr. Sabin through our mutual participation at medical meetings, and when they would visit me at my offices and laboratories at the National Institutes of Health.

I remember in particular a medical meeting in Miami Beach, Florida, in the 1960s at which Dr. Sabin and I were both speakers. On the first morning of the meeting, my wife and I came down for breakfast. Dr. Sabin was sitting alone and invited…

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Rotarian-built network eliminates food waste, feeds hungry neighbors

20 Oct

Service in Action

By David Bobanick, Mercer Island Rotary Club, Washington, USA; Chair of the Hunger & Malnutrition Rotarian Action Group; Executive Director of Rotary First Harvest

Since joining Rotary First Harvest – a program of Rotary District 5030 (USA) in 2001, I have had the unique opportunity to help expand this program’s strategic impact at the local and national level. Through the dedicated efforts of hundreds of monthly volunteers, we’ve been able to quadruple the amount of produce collected and distributed annually. With the dual goal of reducing hunger and food waste, Rotary First Harvest connects farmers, truckers, food bank and volunteers to reduce hunger-related malnutrition.

Rotary First Harvest is a program of District 5030 that connects farmers, truckers, volunteers and foodbanks to feed hungry families healthy food in Washington State. Rotary First Harvest is a program of District 5030 that connects farmers, truckers, volunteers and foodbanks to feed hungry families healthy food in Washington State.

Hybrid strategies to meet community needs
Rotary First Harvest works on two levels – one large scale and one local –…

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Why does ending polio matter?

18 Oct

Rotary Voices

By Rotary Voices staff

On World Polio Day 24 October, Rotary will be hosting a live-streamed event including an update on our fight to end polio. Here are some links to polio-related resources and recent media articles.

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From foot surgery to biking 104 miles to end polio

16 Oct

Rotary Voices

Catherine Lankford trains as part of the Miles to End Polio team. Catherine Lankford trains as part of the Miles to End Polio team.

By Catherine Lankford, Rotary staff

My upcoming participation in El Tour de Tucson as part of Rotary’s Miles to End Polio team means a great deal to me on many levels.

My first introduction and connection to Rotary began in Mexico, Missouri, through my paternal grandfather, who was a member and president of the Rotary club in that community. I remember hearing stories from him about his weekly meetings, the work he did with his club, his commitment to polio eradication (both as a Rotarian and medical doctor), and the lifelong

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These women of Rotary are changing the world

11 Oct

Rotary Voices

Rotary's Women of Action in Washington D.C. Photo by Alyce Henson/Rotary International Eight of Rotary’s Women of Action in Washington D.C. Photo by Alyce Henson/Rotary International

By Julia D. Phelps, RI director

As I sat in the audience at the White House on 7 October, listening to 10 amazing Rotary women tell the stories of their volunteer efforts, two quotes kept running through my mind. First, “Be the change you wish to be in the world” (Mahatma Gandhi) and second, “Never underestimate the power of a small group of people to change the world. In fact, it is the only way it ever has” (Margaret Mead).

In fact, these 10 women took these two quotes, put them together and created projects, foundations, and fundraising efforts that changed their world and the world of others. It struck me that all of their efforts started with one woman who saw a need, a problem, and then went about addressing the situation. They didn’t get…

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Back on a bike for Miles to End Polio

10 Oct

Rotary Voices

Alison Randall and her boyfriend, Jerry, during at a training ride for El Tour de Tucson. Alison Randall and her boyfriend, Jerry, during at a training ride for El Tour de Tucson.

By Alison Randall, Rotary staff

Being a part of the Miles to End Polio team has been helping rebuild my confidence in bicycling.

A few years ago, I was living in Madison, Wisconsin, riding to class one morning, when another student cyclist I was passing decided to turn left without warning. I crashed and fell off my bike, but thankfully was not seriously injured. Nevertheless, after that incident, I decided to walk to class. No more biking for me.

Time has gone by, and now many of my

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Dialogue for peace in Norway

4 Oct

Rotary Voices

Ema Talam address Rotary members in Oslo, Norway, during the program on dialogue as a means of promoting peace. Ema Talam addresses Rotary members in Oslo, Norway, during the program on dialogue as a means of promoting peace.

By Ema Talam, a university student from Bosnia and Herzegovina

This summer, I was fortunate enough to be selected as one of 16 participants from the Western Balkans to participate in a program for university students and young professionals, age 20 through 30, organized by The Rotary Club of Oslo Vest, Norway, and supported by other Rotary clubs throughout Norway and the Western Balkans.

When I boarded the plane on 15 June, I did not know that this was going to be one of the most interesting summers of my life. I didn’t know much about Rotary and I knew

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