By Dr. Mona Khanna, a former Rotary Group Study Exchange fellow
If you were at the 2014 RI Convention in Sydney, Australia, this week, you may have seen the sticker “Future Rotarian” on some badges. Chances are the badges belonged to members of Rotaract and/or delegates to the 2014 International Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) development program. Continue reading →
Rotary Youth Exchange students from several countries in Paris.
Elizabeth, a Rotary Youth Exchange student from District 6080 (Missouri, USA) to France
I used to think that the sky only stretched on for as far as I could see, and then where my vision became blurred, the world ceased to exist.
I used to think that happiness came from surrounding myself with things that brought me comfort. I used to think the best friends I would ever have were the ones I’d known forever. I used to think that in order to call someone family meant they had to be related by blood. And I used to think that home only had one name. Continue reading →
By Sarah Maingi, Rotaract representative from Kenya
On a warm Saturday morning in April, about 100 Rotaractors from Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, and Burundi gathered at a community in Buterere in Bujumbura, Burundi, to provide households with clean drinking water.
Some of the Rotaractors, myself included, had traveled over 1,000 kilometers by road, and all sacrificed their Easter holidays to serve. Continue reading →
By Denise DiNoto, Rotary Club of Colonie-Guilderland, New York, USA
In August 1990, I left my hometown in rural upstate New York, for a year as an exchange student to Tasmania, Australia. The experience helped shape my adult life, as it has for many other exchange students. However, my situation was unique because I was one of the first students with a mobility impairment to participate in Rotary Youth Exchange.
RI Director Celia Elena Cruz De Giay (left) and RI President Ron Burton recognize Lucia Gomez Garcia during the Presidential New Generations Conference in Rosario, Argentina.
By RI Director Celia Elena Cruz De Giay, Rotary Club of Arrecifes, Buenos Aires, Argentina
When RI President Ron Burton asked me to convene one of his five Presidential New Generations Conferences, I was thrilled with the idea. I know firsthand the potential our youth represent, especially after accompanying my husband, Luis Vicente, as President of Rotary International in 1996-97, as we took part in 21 Presidential Conferences for New Generations around the world that year. Luis’ vision for youth set the stage for Rotary International’s support of New Generations and the creation of Rotary clubs composed of young people.
Kate McKenzie, wearing her Rotary hat, meets a fellow Rotarian in Melbourne.
By Kate McKenzie, a member of the Rotary Club of Randwick, New South Wales, Australia
Since joining Rotary, I have discovered the ultimate travel accessory, my Rotary hat. Not only does it keep the sun off my Celtic skin, but it advertises my connection to Rotary.
I currently live in Sydney with my husband, but grew up on a farm in the southern part of Western Australia. It’s one of the most isolated and beautiful parts of the world, but it’s also what inspired me to be interested in other cultures and what led me to Rotary. Continue reading →
Zaahidali Nathu with children at the Refilwe orphanage near Johannesburg, South Africa.
By Zaahidali Nathu, a member of the Interact Club of Hugh Boyd Secondary School, Richmond, British Columbia, Canada
This past summer, I got to go on a trip of a lifetime to an orphanage in South Africa called Refilwe.
The orphanage is in a settlement just outside of Johannesburg, South Africa. Joining me on the amazing trip were seven other Interact members from Hugh Boyd Secondary School in Richmond, British Columbia, Canada, two teachers, and four Richmond firefighters. Continue reading →
Construction on a new school in Masaya, Nicaragua. Photo courtesy Leonor Fraser
By Rotary staff
Leonor Fraser and other members of her Rotary club arrived in Masaya, Nicaragua, ready to deliver shoes to the elementary schoolchildren and play with them.
It immediately became apparent that the school, located near a diesel plant, had bigger problems. The plant emitted pollutants into the air, which made the children and teachers lethargic, and the cracked building had no sanitation facilities. Fraser had difficulty breathing during her visit. Continue reading →
Interactors take part in an outdoor activity during the famine camp to raise money for World Vision.
By Janelle Tai, club service director for the Interact Club of Wesley Methodist School, Sentul, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Fasting from food and drinks except for plain water may sound like an impossible feat for us food-loving Wesleyans, but that’s exactly what we did on one weekend earlier this year for a totally worthwhile cause.
We organized our 30-hour famine camp in conjunction with World Vision Malaysia with the theme of “Fight Hunger!” In total, 120 students and 5 teacher advisors took part. We had an amazing time. The morning started off with a few ice breakers. Then, everyone headed outdoors for more vigorous activities. The highlight of the night was our Mystery Game. Continue reading →
RI President Ron Burton and his wife, Jetta, (second and third from right) at the Presidential New Generations Conference in Uganda.
What does it mean to Engage Rotary, Change Lives? For me, it means, in part, to share my love of Rotary as well as empower the next generation of Rotarians. I’m hoping I was able to do that when from 4 to 5 November I visited Kampala, Uganda, for the second Presidential New Generations Conference. Continue reading →