Victoria Alvarez and other youth exchange students during their trip to the West Coast of the United States.
By Rotary Voices staff
As the year draws to a close, we recap our top five stories of the year (based on number of views):
- During her Rotary Youth Exchange to the United States, Argentinian Victoria Alvarez met teenagers from all over the world and learned how to appreciate different points of view. Alvarez shared how her Rotary Youth Exchange opened her eyes.
- Chris Davidson, a member of the Rotary Club of Newport News, Virginia, joined 29 other Rotary members under the age of 40 during a Young Professionals Summit in Chicago to discuss how Rotary can better attract and engage young professionals. Davidson shared what young professionals are looking for in Rotary.
- Jurag Gago, a Rotary Youth Exchange student from Slovakia, fell in love with Chicago during his year in the United States, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Aurora Sunrise. Gago shared how Rotary Youth Exchange exceeded his expectations.
- Bill Wittich, past president of the Rotary Club of Laguna Sunrise, Elk Grove, California, USA, is the kind of guy who hangs out in the local Starbucks. Wittich discovered that the best way to invite someone to join Rotary is to ask.
- Ron Nethercutt, a member of the Rotary Club of Mabalacat, Pampanga, Philippines, shares his reason for wearing a Rotary pin. Nethercutt was attending a large chamber of commerce meeting in New Orleans when he was approached by a young lady who thanked him. When he asked why, she recounted how her Rotary scholarship allowed her to earn a master’s degree in international banking and improve her life circumstances.
Tara Strunk, right, and Rotary President Gary C.K. Huang at the Rotary China Conference.
By Tara Strunk, Rotary Club of Shanghai
We all become Rotarians for a reason. Each of us has different reasons, but we all have a reason.
Rotary President Gary C.K. Huang inspired more than 130 attendees at the Rotary China Conference held in Shanghai recently with his experiences, his passion for growing Rotary (especially in China), and his family’s commitment and involvement in Rotary.
During the two-day conference, President Gary shared with us his theme for 2014-15, Light Up Rotary. This theme is particularly meaningful to Rotarians in China as many of us studied Continue reading
Elaine Lytle, second from left, at a school in the Philippines her club is supporting through a service project.
By Elaine Lytle, Rotary Club of Como-Jannali, New South Wales, Australia
As a small Rotary club, we were on the road to extinction when we decided to hold a series of meetings as a whole club. We reviewed the usual list of strengths and weaknesses, action plans, and brainstorming ideas that we have done in the past with no real follow up.
But what really made a difference was when we looked in depth at the new means of communication and technologies available to us. One of our members is a financial consultant and another an accountant and we had them lead a session on approaching our club like it was a start-up business. Continue reading
Interactors during a photo break at the Rotary Convention in Sydney, Australia.
By Marilyn Axler, a member of the E-Club of South Jersey, and Rotary Global History Fellowship board member
I have been using social media to promote Rotary for three years now, posting on LinkedIn and other platforms to connect with others and share Rotary’s message. From time to time, I hear from members who are uncomfortable with social media. They say they feel it is invasive and they bring up concerns for privacy and safety.
Could it be that they are also afraid to embrace change? I agree the telephone is still the best way to communicate sometimes. But social media is clearly where it is at for younger people. Can we really afford to ignore the “new age of communications?” Continue reading
By Renée Riley-Adams, a member of the Rotary Club of Ashland, Oregon, USA
Recently, I received a blue name badge from my Rotary club. Initially, when a member first joins, my club issues a red badge with a ribbon that identifies them as new members. As we take part in a series of tasks that include things like joining a committee, attending a district meeting, and participating in a club service project, we get our blue badges.
During a short ceremony, I looked out into the crowd, and realized how much these people have become my community. Eating lunch with them every Thursday since last September and hearing about their children’s sports wins, new grandchildren, trips far and wide, and professional achievements, I have a new way of locating myself in this little town of 20,000 people. Continue reading
By William D. Pollard, Jr., Rotary Club of Churchland, Portsmouth, Virginia, USA
I joined Rotary in 1988 at the age of 25. Whenever I think of why we should invite someone to join Rotary, I think of Tommy.
Two years after starting a banking career in Richmond, Virginia, I was asked to work in my hometown of Petersburg. One of the first people to visit me was Tommy Adkins, a retired banker, who asked me to attend a Rotary club meeting. Tommy lived on the same street as my family when I was growing up, and I even delivered his newspaper. Continue reading
Members of the recently chartered Rotary Club of Plaza Matriz in Montevideo, Uruguay. Photo courtesy of Erin Mills
By Erin Mills, Rotary Scholar and charter member of the Rotary Club of Plaza Matriz in Montevideo, Uruguay
A little over six years ago, I packed my luggage and boarded a plane for Montevideo, Uruguay, as an Ambassadorial Scholar from Arizona, USA, to that tiny corner of the world I now call home. It’s where I teach future English language educators at the University of Montevideo, where I teach middle school children from around the world at the American International School, and where 24 young professionals and I are taking Rotary into the next generation. Continue reading