Archive | November, 2015

Why create a video for the Interact Video Awards?

21 Nov

Rotary Voices

By Kyle J. Gomes, member of the Interact Club of Hugh Boyd Secondary

Every year, my Interact club — located in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada — looks forward to creating a video for Rotary’s Interact Video Awards. Last year, our video (above) was selected as the Best Video, earning our club $500 to use toward our service projects. One project very close to our hearts is Operation Christmas Child, and we were able to ship even more gifts and necessities to children in need this year.

Making these videos has been an amazing motivator for our whole club. The best part in making a video is being able to see the real and tangible differences that we make with the projects we support. The other Interactors and I all agree that the experience gave us a perspective on our projects, and showed that although we may be only high school…

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It’s World Toilet Day!

20 Nov

Service in Action

By Erica Gwynn, Water and Sanitation Area of Focus Manager

On 19 November, Mali celebrates the anniversary of yestheir liberation from President Modibo Keita’s power.  In Puerto Rico, 19 November marks the day Columbus discovered the island nation.  There is only one holiday, however, that is recognized and celebrated globally on 19 November: World Toilet Day.

Why do we need a day for toilets? It’s 2015 and 2.4 billion people still do not have adequate sanitation: 1 billion people defecate in the open.  According to the United Nations,  poor sanitation and hygiene are at the heart of the world’s leading disease and malnutrition issues. Still, the subject of sanitation continues to receive little media attention and the current level of prioritization for world leaders is still far from what is needed, given the scale and impact of the sanitation crisis.

Much like the rest of the world, Rotarians are recognizing the limited impact…

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2016 Presidential Conferences to highlight Rotary’s areas of focus

15 Nov

Service in Action

By Rotary Programs staff

Rotary has become a global leader in helping address some of the world’s most critical and widespread humanitarian needs. To highlight Rotary’s work in the areas of focus, RI President K.R. Ravindran and The Rotary Foundation Trustee Chair Ray Klinginsmith are jointly convening a series of presidential conferences during the 2015-16 Rotary year. Between January and March 2016, five conferences will be held around the world:

15-16 January | Ontario, California, USA | Peace and Conflict Prevention/Resolution
19-20 February | Cannes, France | Disease Prevention & Treatment
27 February | Cape Town, South Africa | Economic Development
12-13 March | Kolkata, India | Literacy and Water, Sanitation, Hygiene (WASH) in Schools
18-19 March | Pasay City, Manila, Philippines | WASH in Schools

All of the conferences, led by local Rotary districts, are open to Rotary members and non-members. The conferences will feature engaging speakers, informative plenary sessions, and…

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Millions for HOPE – A teamwork best practice

12 Nov

Regional Leader Blog

 by Pam Russell – RRFC Zone 26 2013-2016, District 5340

When challenged to raise money for The Rotary Foundation, RRFC Pamela Russell, E/MGA Brenda Cressey, Past Trustee Steve Brown, and Major Gifts Officer Mike Dunlap worked with Rotary District 5340 as they set a goal of raising $15 million by October 2015 for their “Millions for HOPE” (Health, Overcoming Poverty, and Education) event.  Within the first six months, they had already achieved $10 million. This great achievement stemmed from leaders working together to provide training and ongoing support on donor identification and cultivation in the district.

Past Trustee Steve Brown talking with Ron Kohl and Antonio Grillo-Lopez, both significant donors in the campaign Past Trustee Steve Brown talking with Ron Kohl and Antonio Grillo-Lopez, both significant donors in the campaign

The leaders engaged with the district governor, district governor-elect and their entire district committee to support their campaign, “Millions for HOPE”. With strong participation from the top 20 clubs in the district, the excitement was building…

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Rotary made me feel right at home in Scotland

7 Nov

Rotary Voices

Ally Vincent, center, with her Scottish hosts. Ally Vincent, center, with her Scottish hosts.

By Ally Vincent

Although I am just 23, I already have nine years’ experience with Rotary. I joined the Interact Club at Crystal River High School in Florida when I was 14. When I began pursuing an undergraduate degree at Saint Leo University, I felt a bit lost, and I missed the connection I had to Rotary. So I became involved in chartering a Rotaract Club on campus, eventually becoming club president in 2013-14. I saw Rotary’s good work both on a local and international scale through projects we worked on with the Rotary Club of Belize Sunrise, in Belize, and the Rotaract Club of Islamabad Green City, in Punjab, Pakistan.

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No debate when it comes to ending polio

6 Nov

Rotary Voices

Scott Daniels on a training ride. Scott Daniels on a training ride.

By Scott Daniels

What I remember most is the fear. I was too small to recall all the details, but when I was a child, polio struck the eastern Iowa community where I grew up.

When it hit, people took action. Parents kept their kids at home. The swimming pool shut down. You couldn’t play with the neighbor kids. One of our family friend’s kids contracted the disease. I can vividly remember parents and teachers being concerned about transmission of the virus.

There was no debate in my family over whether or not to vaccinate. You either did or you ran the risk of contracting the disease. We are blessed in the United States to

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Rotary Day of Dialogue – Initiating Change

3 Nov

Rotary Voices

The unique design of the Wosk Centre encourages dialogue and interaction. The unique design of the Wosk Centre encourages dialogue and interaction.

By Chris Offer

I have had the opportunity to help design an imaginative Rotary event. The Rotary Day of Dialogue in Vancouver, British Columbia, on 21 November, will give voice to Rotary members’ ideas on how to transform Rotary.

John Anderson, governor of District 5040 (British Columbia) conceived the idea as an opportunity for

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