By Salman Ali Rajput, past president of the Rotaract Club of Nawabshah Central, Pakistan, and District 3271 secretary
I have always been involved in extracurricular activities practically since I was old enough to walk. But it wasn’t until I joined Rotaract in 2015 that I discovered the many ways a young person can learn and grow while serving the local community. My life has been transformed by Rotaract. Before I joined, I felt like a common man. Today, I have been groomed into a proud global citizen. Here are five ways Rotaract can change your life.
Meeting new people: Rotaract club service opportunities are so diverse that students in any field of study can develop their leadership and organization skills while paving the way to a better future. I am the charter and past president of my club and district secretary. I have been fortunate to take part in many service activities, and even earned recognition in my district. But better than any of these honors has been the opportunity to learn new things and meet new people.
Kindling a desire to help others: During my time in Rotaract, we took part in several service projects helping those in need in underprivileged communities. It developed within me a stronger desire to help others. I felt more connected to my community and more motivated to think about others. This in turn meet a need within me. I believe those who help others are themselves blessed. And I think this is one of the aims of Service Above Self.
Broadening your horizons: Rotaract’s international reach has given me connections with other members around the globe. This is a wonderful thing that makes our organization unique. It provides a friendly environment where young people from many different cultures can learn and exchange insights.
Becoming a peacemaker: By providing a place where people come together from many different countries, Rotaract is building peace. We are being knit together into an international family.
Growing professionally: One of the most important ways I have changed is professionally. Rotaract has built my confidence, communication skills, and leadership abilities — all of which are so critical in today’s world. I no longer shake at the prospect of public speaking, whether it’s addressing audiences at the district level or talking at club or business meetings.
I share my story. But Rotaract has been changing thousands of young people’s lives for more than 50 years. It has been giving them a platform to advance literacy, improve water and sanitation, and help the environment. Every day, somewhere, a Rotaract club is doing something to address a problem or issue.
If you have a desire to create positive change in the world and be an inspiration to others, while being changed yourself, join a Rotaract club.