Unforgettable memories made in Atlanta

Hairyung Sung (front row, second from left) with alumni from the Rotary Peace Center at Duke University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA.

By Hairyung Sung, Rotary Peace Fellow 2013-15 at Duke University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

This June, I attended the Rotary International Convention in Atlanta, Georgia, as a Peace Fellow alumnus, and was also able to take part in both the Peace Assembly and the Presidential Peace Conference. On 8 June, some 90 current and former Peace Fellows from around the world came together for an open discussion entitled “Stories Sustain Peace,” and reflected on the day’s experiences. All of us were in absolute agreement that resolving conflict and promoting peace were long-term endeavors, and we encouraged each other to take whatever action we could. 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

10 tips to attract and retain quality members

Edina’s junior police officer, a member of the Rotary club, shares safety information with students.

By Tom Gump, president of the Rotary Club of Edina Morningside, Minnesota, USA, and a District 5950 trainer

Since 1 July, 2016, my Rotary club has recruited and brought in 31 new members. Eleven of these new members are women and eight of them are under 40 years of age. The club has gone from being classified as a “medium” sized club in our district to being classified as a “large” club in just over nine months. How did this happen?  Here’s our tips: Continue reading

Trees that spread peace

By Hiroko Seki, Rotary Club of Tokyo Yoneyama Yuai

The Ginkgo tree sapling at the Carter Center.

On 12 June, during the Rotary International Convention in Atlanta, we planted a Ginkgo nursery tree at The Carter Center, founded by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize. The tree is a descendant of one that survived the atomic bomb in Hiroshima.

When I saw this young tree for the first time, I was blown away by its vigor and beauty. The sapling was cultivated from its mother tree by Green Legacy Hiroshima Initiative led by UNITAR Hiroshima, and cared for by Steaven 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

Why education changes the world

Isma Seetal, middle left of banner, as a team assistant during District 5320’s Rotary Youth Leadership Awards event.

By Isma Seetal, Rotary Global Grant Scholar

“Education is the best way to change one’s standard of living.”

My mother would repeat this phrase over and over. I was lucky to have been brought up by a hard-working, single, mother, who empowered my brother and me to climb the socio-economic ladder by giving us the best education she possibly could. Other children from broken families like mine did not have the same fortune. My unwavering drive to give back and improve my community led me to join the Rotaract club of Port-Louis, Mauritius in July 2012.  Continue reading

3 meeting formats that increased our member participation

Stacey Vanden Heuvel and Jeanine Gangeness, 2017-18 International Service Director, offer their reflections of the club’s values during a recent meeting.

By Stacey Vanden Heuvel, The Rotary Club of Rochester, Minnesota, USA

As one of the largest clubs in our district, we knew we had to do something to address our declining attendance and meet the needs of our diverse membership. Beginning in 2015 with a club visioning exercise, we began looking for ways we could be flexible and innovative. Here’s what’s worked for us. Continue reading

The Rotary network at work

The Kuehn family, on sofa, during their stay in Vancouver, stranded by wildfires. Ray and Joanne Moschuk, rear, hosted the family.

By Past District Governor Chris Offer, member of the Rotary Club of Ladner, British Columbia, Canada

Wildfires in the forests of British Columbia are common but the fire season in 2017 has been one of the most destructive in many years. At its peak, 40,000 people were evacuated from farms, villages, and cities. More than 1,000 fires were burning 100,000 hectares. Numerous highways were closed, isolating large parts of the province. Continue reading

Why we changed our meeting format

Past President Chris Brand works the webcast computer during a recent meeting.

By Margie Kersey, Rotary Club of Stone Mountain, Georgia, USA

I love my club, but I was concerned. When I joined in 2006, there were over 60 members. By July 2016, there were only 43. We were adding new members every year, but we were losing more. Looking at the average age of my club, I was more worried – over 30 percent of the club was over the age of 70. The future didn’t look bright. Continue reading

Lead with a passion for Rotary

The Rotary Club of Central Ocean – Toms River, New Jersey, USA

By Michael Bucca, past president of the Rotary Club of Central Ocean – Toms River, New Jersey, USA

Passion is infectious, and that couldn’t be more true about Rotary!

I spent a wonderful year of my life leading a great group of people. I say it because I really mean it. The joy and pleasure that being president of my club brought to me is immeasurable. It caused Rotary to become a part of who I am forever.

This deep belief about Rotary had an incredible side effect, the members started feeling that way too! Continue reading