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District 7020 Links
District Governor Felix N. Stubbs &
RI President K.R. "Ravi" Ravindran
Dear fellow Rotarians,
Greetings! Each day I am reminded of what a privilege and an obligation it is to serve as a Rotarian. We must never underestimate the impact our service has on individuals and in our communities.
In April, we put focus on matters of Maternal and Child Health. The World Health Organization reports that last year, about 830 women died due to complications of pregnancy and child birth each day. Each day, every day! The report noted that "most could have been prevented." (Source: http://www.who.int/gho/maternal_health/en/) As Rotarians, we do not look at such statistics and turn away. The health of mothers, babies and children is an important public health goal for our region. We know that our communities' quality of life, infant mortality rate, the health of the work force, the toll on health care systems and the well-being of the family are all impacted by the nature of care available to pregnant women and mothers of young babies. As Rotarians, we can render service through the projects we do by providing medical equipment, facilitating medical care and distributing necessary food and supplies to mothers, infants and children, as examples. We can also play a role by our advocacy of these issues and by funding scholarships for health care workers. I am proud of the work that our clubs do in District 7020 to ensure the future health of their communities.
In April, the Council of Legislation will meet in Chicago. We must be proud of belonging to an organization that routinely revisits its operating rules and takes into account the views of its members. The structure and support of Rotary International as a charitable body is second to none. I encourage you to look out for the report of the Council at the end of its session since this will guide our way forward in the upcoming year.
April is also the month that your Club Presidents will turn in their District reports on the strides made during the 2015-2016 Rotary year, thus far. At the beginning of the year, I challenged us all to make this a successful and significant one for our District. While Rotarians never serve with a reward as the goal, it is fitting that dedicated service is acknowledged. The aim of the District Governor's Award programme was to not only provide the opportunity to recognize successful clubs and the significant work that they do, it also served to challenge and inspire us to continue to provide Service throughout the District. This programme provides a working platform and a self-check and test for clubs. The criteria were aligned with Rotary International's Strategic Plan and, if the suggestions were followed, District 7020 would have built stronger clubs and delivered better service. Your District team eagerly awaits the submission of the reports which are due on April 15, 2016. Club Presidents must fill out and sign the form which must then be verified and signed by the Assistant Governor. The form should be scanned and sent to the relevant District team.
In the meantime, your District Conference team is working to pull off an awesome District Conference that will be full of the WOW factor. One of the WOW factors is the Hollywood-style award ceremony that will take place on Friday, May 6, 2016. Make sure that you are there to celebrate with your club and the Rotary family from around this great District. Conference is a time for us to come together with like-minded people, renew acquaintances, celebrate service and be hosted by our own. It is also a time to renew our service pledge and get motivated for the year to come. RI President K. Ravi Ravindran and I hope to see all of you in Nassau, The Bahamas, during the week of May 2 - 7, 2016. Ensure that you make the most of the RI President's visit by ordering his book on our Conference site and having him sign it.
If you have not already done so, register for Conference 2016 at www.7020.org. Registration is still open and new events and information are being added.
My Rotary family, until I see you at our District Conference next month, continue to Be a Gift to the World as you move from Success to Significance. #unleashtheawesome7020
Dear fellow Rotarians,
Carla and I were near the end of our second visit to Haiti when early one morning, we drove with AG Dawn Johnson and St. Marc Rotarians to a water filtration facility and then to a water purification plant. Both were commendable projects and we could see how beneficial they were in rural Haiti where neighbourhoods were scattered far and wide. We then set out to visit another water purification plant. It was a long drive along dusty roads. As we passed acres of farm land suffering from drought conditions, I overheard AG Dawn and Carla having an animated conversation about the harmful effects of Global Warming. Water is life and here, a peoples' livelihood, a country's economy, was facing devastation.
We passed irrigation channels with very little water and then channels where there seemed to be more water. However, this water was brown. As we drove further, I thought about the men and women who had undertaken these projects. It would have been no easy feat for them to drive all of this distance, on dusty unpaved roads, from their homes and work places, week after week, day after day, to work on projects to deliver clean, safe drinking water to people who they knew only in passing. I also thought about the partners worldwide who donated their money to a cause they believed in but for a people they had not met.
We turned a corner and continued near the bank of a huge winding river, also full of brown water. Another corner, and there it was: a pristine new water filtration plant. What I had not been prepared for was the community gathering that had taken place. I was immediately reminded of a trip to a water well that we had made while on our first trip to Haiti. On that trip, the Boulmier community had gathered to meet us as AG Rosa, DGN Robert took us by foot to the bottom of a hill to observe a well installed by the Rotary Club of Cayes for proud and grateful residents who had responsibly and wisely formed a committee to manage the well.
On this day, beside this river bank, the young, old and in between had gathered to see what miracle was to take place and to meet those responsible for the water plant's existence. After a heart-warming welcome ceremony, the Rotarians took us on an orientation of the plant. Everything was in place technically to turn brown water into clear, chemically-safe, potable water. I cut the ribbon to the plant and declared it open. The water tap was turned on and the miracle happened. A Rotarian filled a jug with water and put it to his lips much to the delight of the attentive crowd. The jubilation and gratitude in the air was palpable. An overjoyed community leader in his speech thanked God for water and thanked God for Rotary. He sometimes spoke in creole but in clear, perfect, English he exclaimed, "Thank God for Rotary!" Old women smiled, children danced, young mothers hugged their babies and young men shook hands. In that moment, I could think of no other place that I would have preferred to be. It was clear that the choice made by countless selfless men and women who used their time, resources and talents for a people they did not know, was the right and responsible choice that would affect generations to come. Clean water meant that young babies had a chance to grow into mature adults, free from avoidable disease. Clean water meant that these residents could cook and bathe and clean and live healthy, productive lives. Those of working age would be less sick which meant that they could work for their families and build their communities. At that moment, I stood proudly as a Rotarian with my District 7020 family. The attached video showing that moment should also make you proud.
In the Rotary World, we focus on Water and Sanitation initiatives in March. We know from information gathered by Rotary International that more than 2.5 billion people lack access to adequate sanitation facilities and at least 3,000 children die each day from diarrheal diseases caused by unsafe water. We know that Water is life. The lack of clean water has not only debilitating health effects on persons but it also disrupts a country's economic well-being. Across our District, many of our clubs have provided clean water systems and sanitation facilities to many. We have donated water tanks to schools, hospitals and communities. We have constructed wells and irrigation systems. We have built restrooms and sanitation facilities. Our job is also to help these communities develop and maintain these systems in order to ensure that our projects are sustainable.
During the month of March, we also celebrate World Rotaract Week. Let us continue to work closely with these young professionals. I encourage you to have them take a lead role at some of your club meetings. Work with them closely on a project. Enjoy socials together. Encourage (and support) those getting ready to leave Rotaract to make the transition to Rotary.
Many persons wonder every day if their lives make a difference. Rotarians never need to wonder. Our selfless service makes a positive difference in communities around the world every day. We perform acts of Significance everyday by which we leave a positive legacy for all of mankind. Thank you Rotarians of District 7020 for your acts of Significance. I will read with interest your various expressions of the District's theme. Those expressions appear in this month's Newsletter. I remind you to register for District Conference 2016 in Nassau, The Bahamas. You can access the Conference link by going to www.7020.org.
Be assured that our Rotary service makes a difference every day. Invite others to join us. Do continue to move from Success to Significance. Continue to Be a Gift to The World. #unleashtheawesome7020
Felix N. Stubbs
District Governor 7020
Dear fellow Rotarians,
January 2016 has been as exciting as the first half of the Rotary year for Carla and myself and I do hope that has been your experience as well. Carla and I visited with the Cayman Brac Club, Cayman Islands, last month and with that 83rd club visit, our official club visits are over. We do have other official visits planned but we can proudly report that we have touched, and been touched by, all of our clubs in this awesome District. January also saw the first visit of RI President K.R. Ravi Ravindran to our shores. President Ravi visited The Cayman Islands on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of The Rotary Club of Grand Cayman. That occasion also marks 50 years of Rotary in The Cayman Islands. President Ravi was well-taken care of by the Rotarians in The Cayman Islands and we should all be proud of being a part of this great 7020 family. President Ravi is looking forward to returning to our District in May when he attends District Conference 2016 in Nassau. You will see his invitation via video to meet him there. The video may be viewed in this Newsletter, on our website and on our Facebook pages.
February is when we pay particular attention to issues of Peace and Conflict Prevention/Resolution. Often when a person thinks about "conflict", images of war or violent altercations loom large. Conflict, at its base, means a disagreement or a clash of opinions/perspectives. It should be clear why a war may be seen as the ultimate conflict. It is also easy to see the consequences of different types of unresolved conflict - persons displaced from their homes, families torn apart, violence, crime and termination of relationships in the home, workplace or in civic organizations such as ours! Just as obvious, however, should be the realization that conflict is inevitable. Thinking human beings will always have different opinions and perspectives and, sometimes, these will be at variance. Indeed, it is from the divergence of opinions and perspectives that great ideas are born and progress made. Therefore conflict can be a useful tool. Ronald Reagan, the 40th President of the United States, once said, " Peace is not absence of Conflict; it is the ability to handle Conflict by peaceful means."
What can you do to advance Conflict Prevention and Resolution? What can Rotary do? The story is told of a family of Chinese doctors, who existed almost 3000 years ago. One in particular was world-renowned and far more famous than his other brothers, also doctors. He was asked why that was so. The doctor was wise in his answer. He explained that his first brother detected the triggers of illnesses and had developed strategies to deal with them before any illness could even start. The second brother dealt with illnesses in the early stages and knew how to prevent them from developing or reoccurring. "I deal with illnesses when they have become critical and the patient is in grave danger. I am known to return persons to good health and therefore I have become famous. However, my two brothers know how to save patients before they even need saving, therefore the fame should be theirs." What does that story have to do with our role in Conflict Resolution and Prevention? If we can help to save our communities, families, workplaces, clubs etc before they need saving, then we will not be overwhelmed by the greater conflicts that put us in grave danger and threaten to tear us apart.
Many of the service projects that we execute can address Conflict directly or indirectly. There are certain known triggers for conflict and violence such as frustration in securing basic resources - food, clothing and shelter. The inability to reason is sometimes the result of illiteracy. The lack of a skill and resources can lead to unemployment which can cause conflict in the home and in the community. We can therefore indirectly tackle conflict by stemming the triggers. We do this in providing resources and outlets for persons via feeding programmes, conducting or sponsoring vocational training, facilitating medical intervention and establishing literacy programmes etc. Providing outdoor sports facilities and green spaces have been endorsed by studies as helping to create more peaceful schools and communities. Directly, we can address Conflict by sponsoring Conflict Resolution Programs in Schools, supporting law enforcement arms with various initiatives and inviting speakers to our clubs to teach and remind us of conflict resolution methods. I am sure that you can think of many more strategies and I look forward to hearing and seeing what you do across this District. If we do our part to prevent Conflict, then there will be less to resolve. In so doing, we give Peace a real chance to be the model for everyday life.
In the mid-February edition of the Newsletter, we will highlight the winners and other participants of the Conflict Prevention and Resolution Video Contest. In the meantime, I invite you to watch them all on the Rotary District 7020 Video and Song Contest YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYDA4VVXr75D3WjqnhsiqgQ and be inspired. Additionally, if you have not already done so, register for Conference 2016 where you can meet President Ravi: www.7020.org.
CLICK TO view/ download / print the documents that accompany this edition:
All these documents are also included as attachments in the D7020 News email.
Dear Fellow Rotarians,
Happy New Year! A new year is a time of fresh beginnings. We are afforded the opportunity to chart new courses. We get to write new pages in history. We are inspired and challenged to set and attain new goals. I encourage you this new calendar year to set SMART goals:
For Rotarians, the new calendar year signifies the start of the second-half of the Rotary year. This is a good time for clubs to review and tweak club goals. Are you on target to attain or better your goals? What actions must you implement to attain them? A plan of action is the best way to combat the anxiety that sometimes accompanies goal-setting.
My official visits across the District are just about concluded. In this second-half of the Rotary year, I hope to stay in touch virtually! I will meet with Club Presidents and Assistant Governors online to follow-up on those ideas discussed during the club visits. In the meantime, I encourage you to recommit anew to the ideals of service for which your club and Rotary is known. I renew my pledge to you and to the District to assist in whatever way I can to helping you achieve your goals. Your District Team also stands ready as a resource to help you along the way.
This month, in the Rotary world, we highlight Vocational Service. The second Object of Rotary is "to encourage and foster ...High ethical standards in business and professions; the recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations; and the dignifying of each Rotarian's occupation as an opportunity to serve society." We each bring a special talent to Rotary which we use in service. All skills are worthy. As community leaders, our role is also to encourage integrity in all vocations. This month, let us find ways to engage our vocations - in and out of Rotary - to better our communities.
At this time of year, as many persons search for significance and purpose in their lives, encourage them to join us in Rotary. Why Rotary? "Join leaders, exchange ideas, take action". This is who we are - community leaders, exchanging ideas and taking action to better our communities and the world.
The start of 2016 is also a reminder that we steadfastly approach District Conference 2016! If you have not already done so, please register for Conference 2016. Go to www.7020.org or to our District Clubrunner homepage and locate the link to register for conference. We are looking forward to the opportunity to host you in Nassau, The Bahamas, May 2 - 7, 2016!
Fellow Rotarians, a new year is filled with anticipation and excitement. Let us accomplish as much as we can, while we can, for whom we can. Thank you for the great work you do and continue to Be a Gift to the World as you move from Success to Significance. #unleashtheawesome7020
Dear fellow Rotarians,
When Carla and I started this Rotary journey with you in July, we could not have fully imagined the beautiful and inspiring experiences that we have been sharing with you, our Rotary family. This Rotary year is already, but only, half-way through. In the Rotary Calendar, December is a time to focus on Disease Prevention and Treatment. Traditionally, it was celebrated as the Family of Rotary month. In my message to you this month, I will address both.
Last month, on November 27, 2015, RI President K. Ravi Ravindran addressed the heads of state at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Malta, encouraging more funding for the final push for the eradication of polio. The eradication of polio is Rotary's top priority in the area of Disease Prevention and Treatment. It is important that we remain vigilant in supporting the End Polio Now campaign - we are really "this close". However, Rotarians all over support programmes and design projects to fight many various diseases. President Ravi at the CHOGM said, "Eliminating a disease is the ultimate in sustainable development: an investment that yields infinite returns." In our region, disease prevention and treatment is certainly a priority and we have seen the ill effects that disease can have on a family, on a workforce and on a country's economy. Carla and I have been proud to see some of the work that the clubs do in our District - such as providing potable water, installing sanitation infrastructure as well as providing assistance to health care systems by funding training, providing medical equipment, building infrastructure and holding community health clinics. We cannot discount feeding programmes geared towards ending malnutrition and hunger or projects addressing maternal and child health. These projects and programmes all play a part in eliminating disease and creating a sustainable environment for our communities.
The work we do is significant. We cannot do it alone. It requires our dedication and effort as a Rotary family. Who is our family? Our family includes our relatives, our club members, the many arms of Rotary - Rotaract, Interact, Earlyact, Inner Wheel - and our many community partners as well as the beneficiaries of our work. Our family includes those we touch and those who touch us as we go about rendering Service Above 'Self. Sometimes, like a nuclear family, there will be disagreements. Sometimes, like a nuclear family, we will feel unstoppable. December is often a time for reflection on what worked and what did not work in the passing year. This December, let us remember that it is by sticking together through life's - and Service's - twists and turns that we become better persons. In sticking together through challenges, we better understand each other and therefore better serve our fellow man. In our clubs, we will not be shielded from frustrations and disappointments but, if we stick it out, together we will experience joy and fulfillment and leave behind a legacy greater than we individually could have achieved.
For the clubs that we have already visited, we would have spoken with the Presidents and Boards about the Wellness aspect (in French: "bien-être") of our service. Our clubs will be called upon, from time to time, to be places of respite for some of our own members. Our obligation also is to serve each other even while we serve everybody else. If we take care of our members, they will be better able to take care of others. During this month, many of us will celebrate the holidays with our immediate and extended families. Let us not forget to take a moment to cherish those in our clubs and community who have no family or who recently lost family or who will be in dire need this holiday.
And so, as we end a Calendar year and look forward to a New Year, let us renew our commitment to Service and to each other. The work that we do is needed by our communities. They are counting on us - not only to be successful community persons but to perform significant community acts. This year-end, let us recommit to moving from Success to Significance. And in doing so, Be a Gift to the World.
Happy Holidays my Rotary Family! Carla and I wish you love, joy and peace this holiday season.
Felix N. Stubbs
District Governor 7020
2015 - 2016
Dear Fellow Rotarians,
Our Rotary year continues to zip by rapidly and our club visits are keeping apace.
Carla and I are winding down a very successful visit to St. Martin, Saint Maarten, Anguilla and St. Barts, culminating in an enjoyable Rotary gala on the last night of October (October 31). Prior to this, we attended the Zone 33/34 Institute in San Destin Florida, enjoyed a wonderful meeting with the eClub of the Caribbean and completed our visit to Haiti. We have now been to sixty of our eighty four clubs and are looking forward to meeting with the remaining clubs over the next few weeks.
We continue to be heartened by how warmly we are welcomed by Rotarians everywhere. Our belief that Rotarians everywhere are all exceptionally wonderful people is constantly confirmed and we are making lifelong friends. Equally as exhilarating has been the overwhelming pride we have felt as we visit the many projects that the local clubs do. We have also had the great opportunity to meet many Rotaractors and Interactors as well as some Earlyactors. We have proudly inducted several new Rotarians and Paul Harris Fellows. What a ride so far!! Our only disappointment has been that the eClub of the Virgin Islands and the Caribbean lost its charter for lack of activity.
This month, we celebrate the Rotary Foundation. The Foundation is the engine that manages the money we give to Rotary and helps to fund many of the projects that we do across our District and the world. Over the last few years, our District has benefitted tremendously from the Foundation as we have received grant funding of five dollars for every dollar we have contributed. That alone should be motivation for us to dig even deeper into our pockets and support the work of Rotary. There is so much work that we do and still lots more to be done.
"The Rotary Foundation transforms our gifts into projects that change lives both close to home and around the world. As the charitable arm of Rotary, it taps into a global network of Rotarians who invest their time, money, and expertise into our priorities, such as eradicating polio and promoting peace. Foundation Grants empower Rotarians to approach challenges such as poverty, illiteracy, and malnutrition with sustainable solutions that leave a lasting impact." *
There is good reason to make The Rotary Foundation, our "Charity of Choice". The Rotary Foundation was started back in 1917 with less than $27.00 and today the fund has grown to over a billion dollars. The Foundation boasts great stewardship, accountability and transparency and so our contributions are maximized.+ If you are not yet a supporter of the Rotary Foundation, I urge you consider making a contribution. Your investment would help to make our communities better places to live and you would have made a step from Success to Significance as you demonstrate what it means to Be a Gift to the World.
DISTRICT GOVERNOR FELIX N. STUBBS
OCTOBER, 2015 | MONTHLY MESSAGE
Dear Fellow Rotarians,
We are now entering the second quarter of our Rotary year. No doubt, the first quarter was hectic and challenging as we all tried to implement the brilliant ideas we had planned at the District, club and personal level. For Carla and me, it has been extremely rewarding as we continue to visit clubs and see all the marvelous work Rotarians do across our District. We hope you are equally as proud and carry a sense of satisfaction that you are giving your best.
To date, we have visited one half of the clubs and we have seen clubs and projects of varying sizes. No matter the size, each project we’ve visited has left an indelible mark on us. It is truly amazing to witness, firsthand, the outstanding projects that we do. We need to make every effort to better promote our good work so that more persons will come to know Rotary and want to lend their support. The more help we get, the better able we are to address the needs of the communities where we live.
Rotary has designated the month of October as Economic and Community Development month. It highlights one of our six Areas of Focus and may be the one that probably gets the least attention in our District. This year, however, we have a dynamic District Chair focused on working with clubs to develop economic programs that benefit our communities.
A high level view of our District suggests that we are experiencing sluggish economies, high levels of unemployment and rising poverty. These conditions lead to crime and health issues. As Rotarians, we should all be concerned about these trends and think about ways that we can help. Is there something that we can do to help spur income generation and savings? Can we develop projects that will help with job creation and entrepreneurship? What if we were to, as Rotarians, engage other community and business leaders as well as stakeholders in the public and private sectors to work together to develop and implement such initiatives? Here is an opportunity for us to check the classification list in our clubs to identify those members with the skills best suited for economic development and put them to work. I am sure that we would come up with amazing solutions. If we do nothing else but create an awareness of the opportunities in our communities, we could positively impact the lives of the residents around us. Can you imagine a District where Rotarians helped to influence the reduction in crime, the improvement in job opportunities and the general well being of our neighbors? I can. And just think about the number of future Rotarians that we might be creating! That, my fellow Rotarians, is Significance. So let’s make October a month to remember.
During this month, Carla and I will continue to visit clubs and meet as many Rotarians as possible. Our experience has been exhilarating and we can’t wait to meet more of you. While we travel, there is a team of Rotarians in The Bahamas hard at work preparing to welcome you to District Conference next year. Just recently, we released the website for conference registration. If you haven’t already done so, please go to www.7020.org or to our District Clubrunner homepage, locate the link to register for conference and do so early. We are looking forward to the opportunity to host you in Nassau, May 2 - 7, 2016!
Dear Fellow Rotarians,
As I write this letter, Carla and I are in the midst of preparing to visit Haiti South.
For a period of time, we were uncertain whether we would actually get to go to Haiti as Tropical Storm Erika appeared to be headed directly for The Bahamas. Fortunately, it changed course and dissipated before it got to us. It did, however, affect BVI, USVI and Haiti. Thankfully, reports indicate that there was not much damage in any of our islands. Our friends in District 7030 were not so fortunate and I have reached out to them and offered our assistance. Rotarians, we are in the hurricane season and we need to be prepared. Each club should have a Disaster Relief Chair and you should report that name to the District Disaster Relief Chair, Eric “Busha” Clarke. By doing so, we will be better able to coordinate our efforts and render assistance if a disaster strikes.
As I indicated earlier, we are on our way to Southern Haiti where we expect our wonderful experiences to continue. Since I last wrote, we visited the two clubs in Turks and Caicos as well as the 15 clubs of Jamaica Central, North East 1 & 2, South Central and South East. Even though some of the clubs were very small clubs, every club we visited was able to demonstrate the positive impact they had on their community. Equally as pleasing to us was the opportunity to meet with several Rotaract clubs and to spend time enjoying their youthful energy, enthusiasm and innovative ideas. I urge Rotarians to continue supporting our Youth organizations and to give them an opportunity to enhance their skills and their talents.
Many of you are probably busy preparing for the reopening of schools after a long summer break. It is fitting, then, that Rotary International has designated the month of September as Basic Education and Literacy Month. It is an attempt to encourage Rotary Clubs around the world to focus our attention on an area that so desperately deserves our support. There are far too many persons in our society that are unable to read or write and, as a direct result, suffer a state of poverty. We need to find these persons and provide them with an opportunity to better their circumstances. For us, that is what living a life of significance is all about. It is also about helping to provide access to basic education. Our efforts could be as simple as providing pens and pencils for students or even larger by providing the funding to pay for an education. There are many persons out there who need our help. They range from the potential Earlyactor starting school to the senior citizen looking to learn something new in order to "make ends meet".
Rotarians, I want to read about all the exciting things you do this month in a future issue of the District’s newsletter and I want to see you submit your applications for Club of the Month (COTM) recognition. The COTM committee this month will be also recognizing the work you do with and for your youth service clubs.
Lastly, as schools and colleges resume, I encourage you to start working with the youth service clubs - Rotaract, Interact and Early Act - to prepare to participate in the Special Projects Programme and Competitions. The focus areas for the competitions are Basic Education and Literacy as well as Peace and Conflict Resolution/Prevention.
Promote the good work that you do "shamelessly" and let us make September a Significant month that is full of Success stories. Let us make that extra effort and Be a Gift to the World. #unleashtheawesome7020
Felix N. Stubbs
District Governor 2015-2016, District 7020,
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