Jubilee celebrates a year of mercy, unity

Rotary members at the Vatican for the Jubilee.

Thousands of Rotary members gathered at the Vatican in Rome to celebrate a message of compassion, inclusiveness, and service to humanity.

By Elizabeth Celi, Rotary Club of Rome International

The audience at the Papal Jubilee, though buzzing with excitement, excuded serenity. Despite a sea of thousands of people right behind us in St Peter’s Square, I sensed a palpable feeling of tranquillity. We were positioned up close to Pope Francis’ outdoor podium with the sun shining and the soothing sound of water surging through two magnificent stone fountains on either side of us.

As a member of Rotary for eight years in Melbourne, Australia, and now in the Rotary Club of Rome International, I was delighted to attend this event which focused on stories of extending a hand to Continue reading

Free toys brighten children’s lives

Children receive their toys in Badami Bagh, Lahore, Pakistan.

Children receive their toys in Badami Bagh, Lahore, Pakistan.

By Rotary Voices staff

A girl clutched the new purse she had just received during the annual toy giveaway in the community of Badami Bagh, Lahore, Pakistan.

Another child examined the coloring books and colored pencils with interest, while a crowd of other children and their parents surrounded a table in the market square, waiting their turn to select a free toy. Continue reading

Operation Life Jacket saves lives

Donated life jackets in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.

Donated life jackets in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.

By Sergio Santi, International Commodore of the Yachting Fellowship of Rotarians

In September of 2012, we heard from Bill Kosar, a new member of the International Yachting Fellowship of Rotarians from Kenya, that fishermen or ferry passengers were drowning in local waters every week because of a lack of life jackets. We knew we had to do something to help. Continue reading

The beauty of friendship: a Rotary Group Study Exchange to Italy

130729_dudo_thBy Veronica Dudo, a television journalist in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, and member of a Rotary Group Study Exchange to Italy.

Breathing crisp mountain air in the Italian Alps, feeling warm sunshine strolling along Lake Como, coasting through the canals of Venice, and taking in the majestic landscape of the Lombardy region are just some of the adventures I enjoyed as a member of the South Jersey Group Study Exchange (GSE) team from New Jersey, USA, to northern Italy. Continue reading