Why Rotary scholarships are sustainable investments

Sarah Ehlinger Affotey, a former Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, at a project site in Ghana.

By Sarah Ehlinger Affotey

After receiving an Ambassadorial Scholarship from Rotary in 2011, I put a lot of pressure on myself to “do it right,” or in other words, give Rotary a solid return on its investment. With each passing month in Ghana, what I had first deemed as peripheral – the friendships, conversations, and breakdown of stereotypes – were actually advancing world understanding, goodwill, and peace. How ingenious that this scholarship allowed me to advance Rotary’s mission subconsciously?

Continue reading

3 lessons I learned as a Rotary club president

By Quentin Wodon, past president of the Rotary Club of Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C., USA 

Every year, 35,000 new presidents pick up the reins to guide their Rotary clubs. Having recently completed a year as president myself, I thought it would be beneficial to share three lessons I learned from the experience. Continue reading

Why you should enter the 2017 Interact Video Awards

By Andrei Precup, president of the Interact Club of Constanta, Romania

We were honored to be selected as best video in last year’s Interact Video Awards. Our goal was to open people’s eyes to the need to take care of our planet and ourselves.

We were driven to take part both because it was something different from our usual activities and because the theme was so interesting (If Interactors ruled the world). I remember being at our club’s meeting when our president announced the idea of making a video. Many people were very excited. Our club likes taking on new challenges and trying things for the first time. Continue reading

Why it’s not good enough just to bring in new members

A club member gets a turn in the driving simulator during the Rotary Club of Brisbane’s vocational visit to the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety.

By Daniel Vankov, president of the Rotary Club of Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

One of the biggest conversations around Rotary these days is membership growth. There are quite a few stories flying around and all of them provide good advice. But there is a second topic that is as important, if not more so, than membership acquisition, and that is retention. What can we do to keep these members we have worked so hard to bring in?  Continue reading

How to make the most of your year as president

Taking a usie, a selfie with others, during a recent club meeting.

By Kamlesh Chandan, assistant governor for District 7680 and past president of the Rotary Club of Lake Norman/Huntersville, North Carolina, USA

It was an honor to serve as the 19th president of my Rotary club this past year. It broadened my horizons and deepened my insights into our great organization of People of Action. Before the year began, I had a bold vision. I wanted to engage members, do service projects, have fun, incorporate technology, and leave members more educated about Rotary and our club. Every meeting, we took a usie (selfie with others) and shared what we were doing on social media. What did I learn from all this activity? Continue reading

Rotary Scholar in the path of the eclipse

Former Rotary Scholar Mikah Meyer, right, views the solar eclipse with friends.

By Mikah Meyer, former Rotary Scholar

Have you ever seen a 360-degree sunset? If you’re like me and spend a lot of time outdoors, you know that doesn’t make sense. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west, creating a blinding view as you drive east in the morning and a radiant sunset full of colors in the west in the evening. But a 360-degree sunset? Sounds like science fiction. But it’s not. Continue reading

Enjoying the benefits of dual membership in Rotary, Rotaract

Petar Pešić addresses a recent meeting.

By Petar Pešić, a member of the Rotary Club of Nis, Serbia

Driven by a desire to help my local community, I discovered Rotaract when I was attending the Faculty of Law at the University of Niš, Serbia. In the Rotaract Club of Nis, I met a number of young people who, like me, shared an interest in improving our community. It made our actions easier that we all shared the same goal, and we took part in many projects that made us visible in the community. Continue reading

How flexibility has benefited our club

The club held a medical camp 16 July, conducting a variety of tests.

By Suman Satish Sharma, immediate past president of the Rotary Club of Mumbai Dahisar, India

Since our club decided to pursue changes in our meeting frequency and format, we have had many good results. Previously, we had taken a very conservative approach to the number of meetings, and our presidents found it difficult to find good speakers, leaving them little time to pursue meaningful projects. 

Following the 2016 Council on Legislation’s actions allowing greater flexibility, we decided to begin holding Continue reading

The benefits of a friendship exchange

The Rotary Friendship Exchange team from North Carolina, USA, visits India. Blog author Chandan is in the middle in shorts.

By Kamlesh (Kam) Chandan, assistant governor for District 7680 and a member of the Rotary Club of Lake Norman/Huntersville, North Carolina, USA 

In February, I had the opportunity to lead our first outbound friendship exchange to my home away from home – India. Rotary Friendship Exchange is an international exchange program for Rotary members and friends that allows participants to take turns hosting one another in their homes and clubs. Exchanges offer unique chances for cultural immersion and interchange.  Continue reading

The benefits of dual membership in Rotaract, Rotary

Delivering school supplies in Kashmir, Pakistan.

By Muhammad Talha Mushtaq, a member of the Rotaract Club of Jhang Saddar and the Rotary Club of Jhang Metropolitan

When I joined Interact back in 2009, I had no idea the path it would set me on or that it would change my life forever.

I enjoyed many successful service projects with my fellow members of Interact, as we assisted victims of the great flood of 2010. One-fifth of Pakistan’s total land area and 20 million people were directly affected by floods. We were able to collect a sizable sum of money and donations in kind during three days of scorching July heat. It was then that I understand the meaning of this quote by Oprah Winfrey: Continue reading