By David Goodstone, Rotary senior writer
As a writer, I’m always looking for metaphors and similes, especially in unfamiliar places, searching for the right phrase to tell a story.
On my first Rotary trip to India with Rotary Polio Ambassador Minda Dentler, the story I was seeking to tell was the work of Rotary members and the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. My task was easy. For in India’s sights, objects, and even signs, rich metaphors are abundant.
Take this sign on the back of a ubiquitous Tata truck: “Obey the Traffic Rules.”
Tata truck in India
Children receive their toys in Badami Bagh, Lahore, Pakistan.
By Rotary Voices staff
A girl clutched the new purse she had just received during the annual toy giveaway in the community of Badami Bagh, Lahore, Pakistan.
Another child examined the coloring books and colored pencils with interest, while a crowd of other children and their parents surrounded a table in the market square, waiting their turn to select a free toy. Continue reading
Some of the children at the school we visited. Photo courtesy of the Rotary Club of Dombivli East
By Dr. Swati Gadgil, Rotary Club of Dombivli East, Maharashtra, India
Our Rotary club’s women’s welfare society recently went to a tribal settlement in Katkar Wadi, where we visited 60 households and a 35-student school for kindergarten through grade four, handing out notebooks, writing materials, clothing, and utensils. Many of the women in the settlement have never been to school, and it is a rare occasion when they even travel out of their community. Our youth wing conducted games for the children, also engaging our members in the fun.
We were also able to plant trees in the community and distribute snacks and treats. The team left with the determination to adopt the settlement and make a significant difference for years to come.
Members of the vocational training team of eye specialists from India perform an eye surgery in Ethiopia. Photo courtesy Rotary District 3140
By Suhas B. Naik-Satam, past president of the Rotary Club of Bombay Chembur West, Maharashtra, India
In March, during our silver jubilee year, my Rotary club sponsored a vocational training team of ophthalmologists to Ethiopia to improve the abilities and skills of eye surgeons at various medical centers there.
Under the direction of club president S.R. Balasubramanian and led by Dr. Haresh Asnani, a past president of our club, the team of three super specialists included a vitreoretinal surgeon, a pediatric ophthalmologist/squint specialist, and an oculoplastic surgeon/ocular oncologist. Our club partnered with Beyond Eye Care, an organization that manages the India Eye Center in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital. Continue reading
Club members get ready for a walkathon in Sanjay Gandhi National Park to raise awareness for the need for skin donations.
By Rajesh Kumar Modi, Rotary Club of Mumbai Borivali East, Maharashtra, India
In Mumbai, our deputy fire chief recently died after suffering major burns rescuing people from a residential building fire. Two other officers also died in the fire. The media covered the tragedy, and how a shortage of natural skin in our skin banks complicates the efforts to save brave individuals like these. Continue reading
A member of the medical team inspect a patient for cataracts.
By Himal Pandya, past president of the Rotary Club of Bhavnagar Royal, Gujarat, India
Every year, our club has arranged multiple medical camps in and around the town of Uttarkashi. We began the effort two years ago when heavy flooding struck the state of Uttarakhand, and our charter president risked landslides and other perils to help deliver 1,200 cooking stoves and other supplies to flood victims. We struck up a close association with Rotary members in Uttarkashi about 1,000 miles from our city.
It is a great and most satisfactory experience performing humanitarian service miles from home. This year, seven committed medical Continue reading
Students use the sound proof therapy room at the Kamalini school for children with hearing and speech impairments.
Prafull Karnik, past president of the Rotary Club of Thane East, Maharashtra, India
Our unique partnership with the Rotary Club of Mission Viejo in California, USA, began more than a decade ago when I was president and I was looking for a centennial project for our club. With other members of the club, I visited Nakhwa School in Thane, established in 1964 to provide education for children from low-income families, and was convinced this would be a great opportunity for us to serve. Continue reading
By Thamilarasu Ramaswamy, president-elect of the Rotary Club of Madras Vadapalani, Tamil Nadu, India
This is my Rotary story. In November of 1995, heavy rains created floods that uprooted trees and ravaged agricultural fields in the state of Tamil Nadu, India, paralyzing many communities. The district of Tiruvannamalai was the hardest hit. District administrators worked hard to help those affected by the floods, providing food and clothing.
In one subdistrict known as Sengam, there are many weavers who make dhoties and sarees on manually operated hand looms operated by wooden pedals. Many of these looms ended up under water, destroying the equipment and the ability of these weavers to carry on their craft and make a living. In addition, many lost all or most of their belongings. Continue reading
Children read books they received through Gyan Jyot, a program of the Rotary Club of Baroda Sayajinagari.
By Rotary Voices staff
Rotary members in Gujarat, India, have launched a program to put books into the hands of children from low income families who cannot afford them, or whose schools lack large library collections.
Gyan Jyot is a program of the Rotary Club of Baroda Sayajinagari. For as little as $3,000, the club purchases and circulates a variety of reading material to students, who get to pick a book of their choice a week to read at no cost. Continue reading
Monica Kinyua (right) and her sister, Jane Wanjiru, founded the Children’s Peace Initiative Kenya. Read more about them in our roundup on Flipboard.
By Rotary Voices staff
Check out our latest roundup of news and feature stories from Rotary News and The Rotarian magazine on Flipboard. You’ll discover how Rotary members in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India, gathered 40,000 people to make the world’s largest human national flag as a tribute to India being polio-free; how a Rotary Scholar is building peace among pastoral tribes in northern Kenya; why Matt Damon is using his star power to bring safe drinking water to those who lack it, and more. Get up to date on Rotary news by reading the roundup.