Archive | July, 2017

We are all same, same…but different

28 Jul

Rotary Voices

Rotary Peace Fellows at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand.

By Dessa Bergen-Cico, a Rotary Peace Fellow at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand

One thing I have learned through my experiences traveling and working around the world is that people are more alike than they are different. Moreover we embody our expressions of joy in similar ways.

Anyone who has ever visited Thailand has likely heard the phrase same, same when trying to make a purchase from a vendor or negotiate the menu in a restaurant. Same, same is an English phrase used by Thai people, it means that two or more items are similar, or cost the same amount. 

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Open World Program promotes global understanding

27 Jul

Source: Open World Program promotes global understanding

Open World Program promotes global understanding

27 Jul

Service in Action

By Greg Batz, a member of the Rotary Club of White Bear Lake, Minnesota, USA

Twelve years ago I was invited by a fellow Rotarian from a neighboring club to chauffer a delegation of Russian judges to the federal court house in Minneapolis for a tour and meetings on a Friday morning. Little did I know how that simple offer to help would change my life.

These five judges had been nominated and selected to participate in the Open World Leadership Program and were just finishing their 10-day visit to the United States. The experience I had that day was the beginning of an opportunity to travel to Russia four times and experience a country that most Americans only read about in the news or see on TV.

My wife and I have dozens of wonderful Russian friends from Moscow and St. Petersburg, to Ufa, Stavropol, and Krasnoyarsk. We have…

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How flexibility has benefited our club

26 Jul

Rotary Voices

The club held a medical camp 16 July, conducting a variety of tests.

By Suman Satish Sharma, immediate past president of the Rotary Club of Mumbai Dahisar, India

Since our club decided to pursue changes in our meeting frequency and format, we have had many good results. Previously, we had taken a very conservative approach to the number of meetings, and our presidents found it difficult to find good speakers, leaving them little time to pursue meaningful projects. 

Following the 2016 Council on Legislation’s actions allowing greater flexibility, we decided to begin holding

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ShelterBox and Rotarians serve devastated communities around the world

25 Jul

Source: ShelterBox and Rotarians serve devastated communities around the world

ShelterBox and Rotarians serve devastated communities around the world

25 Jul

Service in Action

By Alex Youlten, Rotary Partnership Manager for ShelterBox, and Ellina Kushnir, Supervisor of Service and Engagement for Rotary International

As the 2017 Rotary year came to a close last month, Rotary and ShelterBox reflected on our most recent collaborations to save lives and help families and communities devastated by conflict and natural disasters.

Over the past year, Rotary groups around the world have raised the equivalent of US $2,846,956 to help families who have lost everything following disaster.  The funds enabled deployments to disasters in 12 countries (Afghanistan, Cameroon, Columbia, Ecuador, Fiji, Haiti, Iraq, Mozambique, Niger, Paraguay, Sri Lanka and Syria) and relief efforts included responding to floods, political conflict, landslides, earthquakes, hurricanes and cyclones to help more than 20,150 families.

Natural disasters

Responding to flash floods and mudslides in Peru, ShelterBox worked closely with Rotarians and Rotaractors to conduct an assessment of affected communities in April 2017. As…

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Unique field experience cements Peace Fellow’s desire to pursue human rights

22 Jul

Rotary Voices

Laurie Smolenski, right, with her Rotary Peace Fellow class at the University of Queensland.

By Laurie Smolenski, 2015-17 Rotary Peace Fellow, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

I’ve just completed 18 months as a Peace Fellow at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. A highlight was spending three months in Mexico City for my applied field experience. This is a cornerstone of the University’s Peace Fellow program, through which Fellows take on a project or internship outside of Australia. I interned with the Mexico City office of the MacArthur Foundation, which supports peace and justice initiatives globally.

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The benefits of a friendship exchange

15 Jul

Rotary Voices

The Rotary Friendship Exchange team from North Carolina, USA, visits India. Blog author Chandan is in the middle in shorts.

By Kamlesh (Kam) Chandan, assistant governor for District 7680 and a member of the Rotary Club of Lake Norman/Huntersville, North Carolina, USA 

In February, I had the opportunity to lead our first outbound friendship exchange to my home away from home – India. Rotary Friendship Exchange is an international exchange program for Rotary members and friends that allows participants to take turns hosting one another in their homes and clubs. Exchanges offer unique chances for cultural immersion and interchange. 

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Attending the RI Convention (virtually)

15 Jul

Rotary Voices

Rotary members watch the debut of Rotary’s VR film, “One Small Act” at the Atlanta Convention.

By Bill Pollard, Rotary Club of Churchland, Portsmouth, Virginia, USA, and past governor of District 7600

It would be wonderful if every Rotarian could experience at least one Rotary International Convention. It is a great venue to hear from our leaders, listen to keynote speakers, learn useful information at breakout sessions, and visit with Rotary Fellowships and Action Groups in the House of Friendship. Of course, the best part of attending a convention is the opportunity to enjoy fellowship with Rotarians from all over the world.

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Overcoming Ebola, poverty to educate children in Liberia

11 Jul

Rotary Voices

Students at African Dream Academy in Liberia.

By Samuel R. Enders, Rotary Club of Yonkers-East Yonkers, New York, USA

On the 1st of July, the African Dream Academy successfully concluded our 2016-17 academic year, our sixth year educating the children of Liberia. Despite lingering effects of the Ebola outbreak (2014-15) in our country and many other poverty-related obstacles, we were able to educate 945 children this year, and provide free health care to 17,000 children under the age of six.

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