By Courtney Drew, Rotary staff
When I first interviewed to work at Rotary International, I told my future manager I was looking for a place to dig my roots deep; to contribute to the bigger picture, and to feel like I was part of an extended family. That, so far, has exactly been my experience here at Rotary and I am incredibly grateful.
Taking part in El Tour de Tucson as a member of the Miles to End polio team will provide a new level of depth to my roots; and bolster my connection to the Rotary family.
I have been fortunate enough to play a support role at two International Conventions (2015 and 2016), and one International Assembly (2016). I have met several hundred Rotarians and Rotaractors, all of whom are committed to doing good within their communities and throughout the world. I love listening to their stories as they tell me how and why they’ve come to be a part of the Rotary family and why it’s such a huge part of their lives. Their energy, their passion, their wisdom inspires me to do more, to work harder, to make a greater impact.
I also realize how privileged I am to be able to say I have no personal connection to polio. In a world that’s full of a million things to worry about, I never have to think about contracting this debilitating disease. Wouldn’t it be awesome if everyone in the world had that same luxury?
Now, through the El Tour de Tucson ride and the Miles to End Polio team, I have the opportunity to make an impact directly. And I’m ready for the challenge.
In a world that’s full of a million things to worry about, I never have to think about contracting this debilitating disease. Wouldn’t it be awesome if everyone in the world had that same luxury?
As a long-time athlete, I’m no stranger to training programs, distance cycling, or fundraising. I’ve trained for two marathons (and several half-marathons), and I’ve done the Ride for AIDS Chicago twice. I know that training will be exhausting, but also invigorating. Distance cycling will push my physical body and mental state, and I will learn and grow and become holistically stronger throughout the process.
Fundraising will be difficult. But it will also allow an opportunity for me to strengthen connections with friends, family, Rotaractors, and Rotarians throughout the world. I look forward to sharing experiences together with the Miles Team, and sharing stories with my network of family and friends through my favorite social media sites. I hope my energy, enthusiasm, and dedication will inspire others to commit to End Polio Now.
Courtney Drew is an analysis and pre-conventions specialist, focusing on Rotary’s Youth Exchange program, and one of several Rotary staff members who will join General Secretary John Hewko in biking El Tour de Tucson in Arizona to raise money for polio eradication. Read posts from other team members leading up to the 19 November event and learn how you can support the team.
Want to join the effort? Take part in the Indoor Ride to End Polio by riding a stationary bike at your local gym or at home anytime from 12 to 19 November.