October 2019
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The Object of Rotary
THE OBJECT of Rotary is to encourage and foster
the ideal of service as a basis of worthy enterprise
and, in particular, to encourage and foster:
FIRST The development of acquaintance
as an opportunity for service;
SECOND 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;
THIRD The application of the ideal of service in each
Rotarian’s personal, business, and community life;
FOURTH The advancement of international
understanding, goodwill, and peace through
a world fellowship of business and professional
persons united in the ideal of service

Mark Daniel Maloney

I love to travel! I even enjoy the mundane process of getting from here to there. But last year, my wife, Gay, and I had one of those experiences that would strain the optimism of even the most cheerful traveler. We found ourselves with six hours to wait, at an airport where we were not scheduled to be, on a day we had not planned still to be traveling, having woken up that morning at a hotel unknown to us the night before. It was one of those days.

As we waited at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City, Gay and I took a walk to people watch. We went from one end of the terminal to the other and back, looking at every gate, every destination, every group of people waiting for their flights.

Each gate was its own island of humanity. When we walked down the center of the concourse, we were in New York, moving along with everyone in one river. But when you veered off into those seats, you left that current and landed on an island. You were already in Delhi or Paris or Tel Aviv.

As we started our walk, I thought: "All these different people, all these different countries, all in one place. This is like Rotary!" But as we walked past gate after gate, I realized something. It was not like Rotary at all. Because everyone in that river was heading for an island. And every island stayed an island. The people heading to Taipei might be talking to one another, but they were not talking to the people heading to Cairo or Lagos.

Contrast that with Rotary. Rotary allows us to connect with one another, in deep and meaningful ways, across our differences. It connects us with people we would never otherwise have met, who are more like us than we ever could have known. It connects us with our communities, to professional opportunities, and to the people who need our help.

Connection is what makes the experience of Rotary so very different from walking along that concourse at JFK Airport. In Rotary, none of us is an island. All of us are in Rotary together, whoever we are, wherever we are from, whatever language we speak or traditions we follow. We are all connected to one another — part of our communities and members not only of our clubs, but also of the global community to which we all belong.

This connection is what lies at the heart of the Rotary experience. It is what brings us to Rotary. It is why we stay. Please join your fellow Rotarians on this journey as Rotary Connects the World.


By Rotary Service and Engagement

Rotary is built on connections. Rotary International provides a way to connect to our communities, to network professionally, and to build strong and lasting relationships. Our membership connects us to a global community through our countless projects and programs. Our service connects us to people who share our values, who want to take action for a better world; it connects us to people we would never otherwise meet, who are more like us than we could have imagined; and it connects us to people who need our help, allowing us to change lives in communities around the world.

In 2019-2020, Rotary is implementing our new strategic plan, responding to the innovative decisions made  at the Council on Legislation, and serving our areas of focus through our avenues of service. But the real work of shaping Rotary’s future lies in our clubs, where our organization must do the most to adapt to today’s changing realities.

RI President Mark Daniel Maloney encourages you to make your clubs warm, welcoming places where service and family go hand in hand, where family-oriented young professionals have the opportunity to embrace Rotary service and model positive civic engagement. During 2019-2020, President Maloney challenges you to strengthen the many ways that Rotary Connects the World by building the connections that allow talented, thoughtful, and generous people to unite and take meaningful action through Rotary service.

Below are just a few ideas of activities you can undertake to honor this year’s theme:

  • Join a discussion group to exchange ideas around a shared topic of interest with fellow members.
  • Create lasting change by supporting club and district initiatives on Rotary Ideas.
  • Inspire others by sharing your service projects on Rotary Showcase.
  • Leverage subject-matter expertise by collaborating with a Rotarian Action Group on a service project or join a group to share your expertise.
  • Sponsor a Rotary Community Corps to enhance community engagement and ensure project sustainability.
  • Foster international understanding and meet prospective partners at a Project Fair.
  • Discover new cultures by participating in a Rotary Friendship Exchange.
  • Share your passions with Rotarians around the world by joining a Rotary Fellowship.
  • Work with your district international service chair to find resources and local expertise to help you plan sustainable, successful projects and grants. Find experts in project planning, Rotary’s areas of focus, and Rotary grants in the district resource network.
  • Work with your district community service chair to develop service projects that address needs in your region.
  • Collaborate with Rotary’s service partners on a project.
  • Attend one of five presidential conferences at key United Nations offices around the world. Join Rotary leaders, International officials, friends, and guests as we celebrate our longstanding relationship with the UN and commemorate the organization’s 75th anniversary.

The 2019-20 Rotary Citation will recognize clubs’ array of accomplishments that make a positive difference in their communities related to Rotary’s strategic priorities. Encourage your clubs to work towards the citation’s goals. Follow this blog for inspirational ideas on achieving the humanitarian service goals to qualify for the citation.


Rotary Connects the World


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