The Rotary Foundation can be seen as the most magnificent means to an end. Such foresight was shown at the 1917 Rotary convention, by the outgoing Rotary International President Arch C. Klumph when he proposed to set up an endowment for the purpose of “doing good in the world”, with money that was unspent. In 1928, this endowment fund was renamed The Rotary Foundation, and it became a distinct entity within Rotary International.
In 1929, the Foundation made its first gift of $500 to the International Society for Crippled Children. When Rotary founder Paul Harris died in 1947, significant contributions were made by people from all around the Rotary world and so began an organisation that continues to fund scholarships and projects at a global and local level.
Opportunities for Rotarians like me to make the Foundation my charity of choice with regards personal giving, and Rotary Clubs to secure District and Global funds to do the work that is deemed so important in the community is provided by our Foundation. Let’s always look for opportunities to use the Foundation District funds! I have an idea as to how this could happen.
During the month of November we recognise Social Inclusion Week, which runs from Saturday 21 to Sunday 29 November 2015. Our own Dr Jonathon Welch AM promoted this concept which is about encouraging communities to reconnect and be inclusive of all cultures, age groups, nationalities and the disadvantaged.
Key social inclusion target groups include, young people 12-25 years of age, jobless families with children, disadvantaged Australians, people with a disability or mental illness, people who are homeless, older people and Indigenous Australians.
The theme of Social Inclusion week: 'Collaborate, Connect and Celebrate' got me thinking about the notion of Rotary clubs being Refugee Ready. We know that we can expect to have many people coming to our country as refugees in the near future and I believe that the leadership that we show as Rotarians may well be measured by the level of social inclusion shown during this Year of Being a Gift to the World.
Should we be making contact with local agencies to ascertain how we can help?
What about connecting with local schools to see if a donation of “ Welcome to Australia Books” would be seen as valuable?
Do we partner with local sports clubs to make sure that children from a refugee background receive support for uniforms and equipment?
Will we make use of Foundation District Grants to partner with such organisations to make our ideas a reality?
Thank so much to the Clubs who took the opportunity to shine a spotlight on the End Polio Now Campaign by a little fun fundraising on and around the 24th of October. Lots of action on Facebook indicated to thousands of people that we are proud of the work that Rotary has done over thirty years on this Global Campaign. Lots of smiling faces as fingers were painted purple!
The Rotary Club of Kyneton decided to use the first ever The Dogs’ Brunch Project as an opportunity to showcase Rotary and our role in ending Polio. The Kyneton club invited local dog owners and their pooches to a fun morning to socialise, share a snag &, enjoy dog friendly activities.
The Interact Club of Baden Powell College spent time sharing the Rotary End Polio story with the College community and have donated $400 to Rotary to accomplish the challenge of eliminating Polio. Club members showed their support by painting their pinkie fingernail purple.
As a school we should stand together to prevent the disease and support this organisation in the hope to end Polio. (Belinda Dawson, Baden Powell College Interact President)
Over the past few weeks the President and members of the Rotary Club of Brighton have been reviewing their status as a male only club.
President Barry Hickman has lead a respectful, comprehensive and collaborative process culminating in a vote by members. The result is that females will be inducted and welcomed as Rotarians into this club with a proud history of extensive service to the local and international community. The family of Rotary will be significantly enhanced by the outcome of the inclusive, thoughtful and resilient leadership shown by Barry.
“A lot of different flowers make a bouquet.” Origin unknown but this seems to sum up the themes in this article.
Enjoy Rotary as you are……. a Gift to the World.
Ubuntu: I am, because you are.