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Atomic bomb trees serve as silent witness for peace

Akio Nishikiori

By Akio Nishikiori, member of the Rotary Club of Hiroshima Southeast, Japan, and an atomic bomb survivor

My Rotary club, Hiroshima Southeast, has actively promoted peace for its entire 60-year existence. We built a house for orphans who lost their families during the atomic bombings in 1945 and in 1982, became a sister club with Rotary Club of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, USA. Our two clubs continue to exchange friendship and organize joint service projects. Continue reading

Australian Rotarians respond to brushfires

Meals for firefighters

Rotary members cook and serve meals for Emergency Services volunteers fighting the brushfires in New South Wales.

Ross Wade

By Ross Wade, Past President, and Issa Shalhoub, member of the Rotary Club of Milton-Ulladulla, New South Wales, Australia

From August through October of last year, residents of the coastal community of Ulladulla, New South Wales, Australia, watched somewhat passively as reports came in about the serious brush fires in other parts of the state and in Queensland.  But they were shaken out of their complacency the last week of November when a serious bushfire began spreading rapidly much closer to home. Continue reading

The Four-Way Test isn’t a tool to judge others

Martin Postic Jr.

Martin Postic Jr.

By Martin “Marty” Postic Jr., past governor of District 5750 and a member of the Rotary Club of OKC Sunrise, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA

In our contentious society, I see friends who are members of Rotary use The Four-Way Test to support opposing political and social arguments and to criticize the thoughts, statements, and actions of others. I see members with completely opposing viewpoints use the same Four-Way Test to both support their argument and demean others. Rotarians and others are using all forms of social media to share their opinions about perceived violations of The Four-Way Test, causing others to pile on additional comments and insults, all with little thought to how this affects our public image.

Which leads me to this basic premise: Continue reading

Leaders, members must work together for an effective club

AP Singh

Amrit Pal Singh

By Amrit Pal Singh, immediate past president, Rotary Club Chandigarh, India

For a Rotary club to be effective, it must be active in all avenues of service. It must also create a positive public image and be a catalyst for promoting peace and understanding globally. The key to achieving this lies in the members. Without members, there is no club, and without effective members, clubs cannot be effective. Continue reading

My first Rotaract Preconvention

Viviana Bennett (middle) and friends at the Rotaract Preconvention in Hamburg, Germany.

By Viviana Bennett, president, Plano Community Rotaract Club, Texas, USA

I get very excited when it comes to Rotary events, and the 2019 Rotaract Preconvention was no exception. It was one of the most breathtaking experiences of my Rotary journey so far. I attended my first Preconvention and Convention in Hamburg, Germany, in 2019, and had an amazing experience meeting fellow Rotaractors and Rotarians from all around the world. Continue reading

New Programs of Scale grants for new year

Using global grant funding, Rotary members provided a well, water tower, and new fountains to a village in Benin.

By Victor Barnes, Director of Programs & Grants

In 2013, Rotary set out on its new grant model under the Future Vision Plan, in the hopes that the approach would enhance the scope, impact, and sustainability of humanitarian projects. More than six years later, and with over $460 million invested in almost 7,000 projects across the globe, Rotary is ready to augment these critical investments with a new grant type. Beginning January 2020, Rotary International is introducing a highly selective, competitive grant model that empowers Rotarians to implement large-scale, high impact projects with experienced partners. Continue reading

Resolve to protect the Rotary brand in the new year

Amanda Wendt

Amanda Wendt

By Amanda Wendt, vice chair of the RI Communications Committee and a member of the Rotary Club of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

I recently saw a story on television about a West Papuan woman who received life-changing facial surgery to fix a a deformity which had caused her a lifetime of struggling to eat, drink and speak. Members of the Rotary Club of Liverpool West and Bendigo Strathdale flew the woman to Australia for the surgery. I was instinctively moved to share the story immediately with my network, congratulating the team involved and expressing how truly proud I was at that moment to be a Rotarian.

I’m sure many of my fellow Rotary members can relate to this feeling. We’ve all experienced pride when our Rotarian friends locally or abroad have helped change the world. But this instance made me realize that we have something else that communicates that sense of pride and it is valuable to preserve and promote. Continue reading

Building Positive Peace in Venezuela

Mauricio Pernía-Reyes

Mauricio Pernía-Reyes leads a class on Positive Peace in Venezuela.

Mauricio Pernía-Reyes

Mauricio Pernía-Reyes

By Mauricio R. Pernía-Reyes, president of the Rotary Club of San Cristóbal Metropolitano, Venezuela

I recently discovered a valuable resource on Rotary’s website that has strengthened my club’s efforts to serve our community and build peace. When I was selected to serve as club president for the 2019-20 year, I wanted to expand my understanding of the resources that Rotary makes available online and through social networks. That is when I found the Rotary Positive Peace Academy. Continue reading

Collect, contribute, connect to end polio

Stamp fundraiser

Employees from Myjob in Mauritius support the stamp fundraiser for polio eradication.

By Nurveen Ratty, Rotary Club of Floreal, Mauritius

As Rotarians, we pride ourselves in taking collective action to create lasting change. And our fight to eradicate polio is without a doubt one of our finest efforts. For World Polio Day on 24 October, my club wanted to plan something different. We wanted an activity where anyone could donate their time, their funds, and their voice simultaneously, regardless of where they were in the world. Continue reading

Event brings together Peace Fellows, Nobel laureates

Rotary Peace Fellows at Mexico summit

Rotary Peace Fellows at the Nobel Peace Summit (from left to right): Lauren Coffaro (University of Bradford); Summer Lewis (University of Queensland); Rosalvina Otálora (Universidad del Salvador); Jorge Meruvia (International Christian University)

By Summer Lewis, Rotary Peace Fellow and coordinator of the Rotary-Institute for Economics and Peace Partnership

It’s not often that you get to spend International Peace Day, 21 September, surrounded by more than 30 Nobel Peace laureates and 1,200 young peacebuilders. But thanks to my network of connections with Rotary Peace Fellows, I was able to do just that and bring 30 Rotaractors, Rotarians, and Peace Fellows from the United States, Mexico, and Colombia with me to the 17th World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates. Continue reading