The first-ever Tacoma Ocean Fest Youth Story Contest invited youth to write about the ocean and what it means to them.
By Rosemary Ponnekanti
At first, Hope was reluctant. She was on the verge of flunking school through poor attendance. But when Kathleen Figetakis, literacy chair at Tacoma Sunrise Rotary, Washington, USA, asked the Tacoma senior for one little favor – to put up posters in her school for the Tacoma Ocean Fest Youth Story Contest – Hope agreed. Six months later, she had not only won second prize in the contest, but she also graduated from high school – and helped the inaugural contest to be a wave of success. Continue reading
By Hope A. Sealey, president, Rotary Club of East Nassau, Nassau, Bahamas. Photos by Alyce Henson, Rotary International.
Storm damage and coastline erosion are threatening many shores around the world, especially islands in the Caribbean. On top of these concerns, climate challenges are vastly affecting the natural ecosystems of these islands. And the island of New Providence, Bahamas, is no exception.
Bonefish Pond National Park, which was established in 2002, has one of the last remaining mangrove systems on New Providence island. During the time of its establishment, part of the park was a dumping ground but the Bahamas National Trust (BNT) – a non-profit organization that manages the country’s national parks – has been working ever since to clean up the park and turn it into a thriving mangrove area.
Some people might ask, why mangrove trees? Continue reading
Binish Desai’s company makes bricks from industrial waste otherwise destined for the landfill.
By Binish Desai, a member of the Rotary Club of Bulsar, India, and a former Rotary Youth Exchange student
I started my journey in Rotary as a Youth Exchange Student in 2009-10, hosted by the Rotary Club of Waukegan, Illinois, USA. I’m now a member of the Rotary Club of Bulsar, India, and Rotary helps me live out my dream, a dream I have had since age 11 – giving back to my community in service.
In 2005, I created my first brick using industrial paper waste and chewing gum. Similar bricks of recycled materials would go on to make thousands of stand-alone toilets for rural communities by 2015. Continue reading
By Parry Monckton, president-elect of the Rotary Club of Turramurra, New South Wales, Australia
In early March, members of my club joined the Operation Crayweed team at Mona Vale Beach to restore the denuded reef on the Sydney shore coastline. We decided to help plant a Crayweed forest as part of our unique response to RI President Ian Riseley’s challenge for Rotary members to plant trees around the world. Underwater trees, you see, are just as important, if not more so, to restoring the health and vitality of the world’s oceans. Continue reading
Rotarians in Tempe plant 124 trees in one day. Photo by Shawna Wolf Photography
By Laura Higgs, chair-elect of the Satellite Club of Camelback Crossroads, 2004-05 Rotary Youth Exchange Student
Our club in Phoenix, Arizona, is a small one. We have about 25 members total, between our morning and evening segments. While cacti typically cover the arid landscape, tree shade in parks is an important aspect of community development in Arizona, and we knew planting one tree per Rotarian was one of RI President Ian Riseley’s goals for the Rotary year. Continue reading
Children display their drawings about the environment.
By Shiv Agrawal, past president of the Rotary Club of Bokora Midtown Couples, Jharkhand, India
Protecting our environment is probably one of the most important issue of our day. My club wanted to tap the creativity of children, and see what they were thinking about the environment. So we organized a drawing competition to let children unleash their imagination and build an awareness of the issue. Continue reading
Jane Goodall joins the Rotarian Action Group for Endangered Species’ “Say No!” campaign to promote animal conservation. Photo courtesy of RAGES
By Philip Merritt, vice chair of the Rotarian Action Group for Endangered Species and a member of the Rotary Club of Mabalacat Clark, Pampanga, Philippines
About three years ago, Rotary member John Glassford sent a message to the Rotarians on the Internet (ROTI) Fellowship’s discussion list asking if anyone had any ideas on how we could help stop the poaching of elephants. I responded: “Why don’t we start a Rotarian Action Group (RAG)?”, and from that point forward, it was a long journey to finally get the Rotarian Action Group for Endangered Species (RAGES) recognized by the RI Board in January. Continue reading
Shoes collected during the drive.
By Anit Thapaliya, president of the Rotaract Club of Pashupati Kathmandu, Nepal
We collected more than 1,100 pairs of used shoes to be recycled and reused as part of our project “Yes Dear, You Change Before the Climate.” It proved that we can teach others to change their behaviors before our climate changes, for the worse.
We set out with the help of Working Hands, a local nongovernmental organization, to convince people to give us their old shoes
instead of throwing them away. Shoes take Continue reading
On Earth Day, billions of people worldwide take action to protect our planet by holding demonstrations, cleaning up their communities, planting trees, contacting elected officials, or otherwise showing their support for renewable energy and conservation. Follow the links below to learn how Rotary clubs are committed to the environment, particularly through managing our vital resources and providing clean water. Continue reading
A woman and her clean-burning cook stove.
By Yale Jones, Rotary Club of Taos-Milagro, New Mexico, USA
I first met George Basch when he joined our Rotary Club some years ago. In 2009 we spent two weeks together hiking in the Upper Mustang region in Nepal, one of the main areas now served by the Himalayan Stove Project.
In 2010, George’s desire to give back to the people of the Himalayas, an area he loves and has visited often, led to a plan to distribute clean-burning, vented cook stoves for free. Continue reading