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

Learn to lead through Interact

Editor’s note: This is the last in a series of blog posts from Youth Leadership All-Stars, participants in Rotary’s programs for young leaders, in celebration of Youth Service Month. 

By Riley Benton, a member of the Interact Club of Coffee County Central High School, Manchester, Tennessee, USA

I had already participated in different service projects when I joined Interact in my freshman year of high school. I have been a member all four years of high school, and it has shaped me into a servant leader. Continue reading

Make someone smile, and see how it changes you

Members of the Rotaract Club of Trenque Lauquen donate toys during a community breakfast attended by 100 children.

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of blog posts from Youth Leadership All-Stars, participants in Rotary’s programs for young leaders, in celebration of Youth Service Month. 

By Nicolas Silva, member of the Rotaract Club of Trenque Lauquen, Argentina

Four years ago, our club undertook a project called “Todo Sirve,” which literally means “’everything serves.” We collected donations in our city, including food, drinking water, clothes, children’s toys, bikes, and beds for an aboriginal low-income community, the Qom village, located in Formosa, a northern province of Argentina.

I will never forget hearing the word “gnashek” (Qom for ‘thanks’) from a woman who I was giving a box of donations to.
Continue reading

Why the good you do will do good to you

Ambanpola, second from left, packing 10,500 food packets for Haiti with members of Rotaract.

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of blog posts from Youth Leadership All-Stars, participants in Rotary’s programs for young leaders, in celebration of Youth Service Month. 

By Nipuna Ambanpola, a member of the Rotaract Club of Armstrong State University and former member of Interact

Volunteering has been a very satisfying component of my life. When I volunteer, it’s always about contributing my time and skills to enhance the quality of life of others in my community.

I joined the Interact Club of Royal College, the second oldest club and the oldest continuously functioning club in Sri Lanka in 2009. Continue reading