How we held our speech contest on The Four-Way Test online

Temrah Okonski

By Temrah Okonski, assistant governor in District 7620 (D.C. & Maryland, USA)

Our district faced a critical decision on what to do about our annual speech contest on The Four-Way Test when the COVID-19 pandemic began to change the world last year. We decided to still hold one, but online. The results proved to be way better than we expected. And we’re convinced that with these few pointers, you can hold your own virtual competition. Continue reading

Italian Rotarians spread joy of giving

Trustee Chair K.R. Ravindran (bottom left) takes part in a virtual major donor event organized by Rotary District 2060 in Venice, Italy.

By Omar Bortoletti, Endowment/Major Gifts Adviser for Zone 14

The Rotary Foundation reminds us constantly why we are here. It reminds us who it is we serve. It reminds us that these days, these hours, while we yet walk this earth – that this is our time and we must grasp it.” These were the words of K.R. “Ravi” Ravindran, Trustee chair of The Rotary Foundation, during the recent major donor event organized by District 2060 in northeastern Italy.

Rotarians in Venice, Italy (under the leadership of District Governor Diego Vianello), had long planned to host Ravindran during Foundation Month last November, but when the pandemic persisted, we found ourselves organizing a virtual event in lieu of an in-person dinner to recognize new major donors. Continue reading

Rotary Peace Fellow sheds light on minorities in Japan

Farrah Hasnain and her friends at the Hamamatsu Festival.

Farrah Hasnain

By Farrah Hasnain

My aim is to change my students’ perception of the U.S. There is a hegemony of whiteness in English language teaching, and I want to represent how diverse and multifaceted the American identity truly is.”

When I wrote this to enter The JET Program as a high school English teacher in 2014, I was not aware of how much this would impact my life in Japan. As I began to crack open textbooks, wake up sleepy students, and navigate the enigma that was the old-school Japanese copy machine, I slowly built a consciousness for the parallels that thrived in the rice fields and smoky factories of Hamamatsu, Shizuoka. Continue reading

Italian Rotarians screen homeless for COVID-19

Healthcare workers apply rapid serology tests to consenting homeless individuals on the streets of Palermo, Italy, to help stop the spread of COVID-19 among the homeless and those who help them.

Italian Rotary members through a partnership between the Rotary Club of Palermo, the Associazione Francesca Morvillo, and Karol Strutture Sanitarie, launched a screening campaign to help stop the spread of COVID-19 among the homeless population of the City of Palermo. It is part of the ongoing efforts of Italian Rotarians to use their skills and connections to counter this pandemic. Continue reading

Becoming a champion for Syrian youth

Champion School students fix a soccer goal and clean up a practice field.

Muyi Yang

Muyi Yang, Rotary Peace Fellow, Uppsala University, 2019-21

If you told me ten years ago that I would be running a non-profit school in a post-conflict country, I would have laughed out loud. At the time, I was working as a business representative for a commodity trading company, visiting clients and inspecting their coal mines.

Visiting one client, colleagues and I found several unbelievably young workers at several mines. Some of them looked even under 10 years old. The client admitted to us that the workers were indeed below the legal age to be working in the mines, but they were keeping it secret because, “what else can we do?” Continue reading

Why you should care about Rotary branding

By Liz Thiam, Rotary brand specialist

As a Rotary brand specialist, I see Rotary signs everywhere. I guess you could say it’s an occupational hazard. Even my children spot Rotary signs wherever we go. So when I attended a local Rotary event in my hometown last year, I couldn’t help but notice how Rotary’s logo was being used. Continue reading

Nigeria conference celebrates youth, collaboration

By Christian Stephen, Elelenwo Rotaract Club, Nigeria

Recently, a friend asked me what Rotaract was all about, and what benefit it provided. It gave me a moment to reflect. Having been a Rotaractor for more than six years, I can boldly say that there has never been a better time than now to embrace the responsibility that Rotaract offers, and to use it to create innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges. Continue reading