Dear Fellow Rotarians - On the 30th of this month, the tally of my Official Visits will just be a mere 25, however I continue to be inspired by reports of service completed, ongoing, and planned. Our club members should and must remember to have fun together and use their friendships to maximize the positive impact of their work to improve the lives of others less fortunate. “Rotary must be Alive, Worthwhile and Exciting”!

After a very busy month and a visit to Abidjan for the Zone Institute, let me now put a few final words together for September - BASIC EDUCATION AND LITERACY MONTH. As an educator myself, basic education and literacy are very close to my heart. It is a critical aspect of our Rotary calendar and effort of promoting peace and lasting change in our communities, as reading and writing are essential for the wellbeing of all. We are very fortunate to be able to read and write, and to help the children and adults alike with their literacy, and not only do I thank you all for doing so, but I also urge you to continue beyond this month to take part in such projects, namely; by simply reading with the children at schools, the local library, children’s wards in hospitals and setting up school libraries, to name a few.

As I visit the clubs, my plea to members is to grow the organization and donate money to the Foundation. The membership issue and diversity is serious in this district and it’s incumbent on each one to remember the RI President’s slogan of “Each- One- Bring -One, and Keep One”. I’ve also asked and will continue to plead that we don’t take our eye off the Polio eradication program as the virus has again reared its ugly head in our neighbouring countries and abroad.

We’ve been encouraged to “Tell our Rotary Story”, when talking to others so that we may engage them in the Rotary thinking as well as promote the work of Rotary. Lastly, we’re about to usher in the month of October – ECONOMIC AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT MONTH - and I urge you to consider planning projects that empower communities through jobs and entrepreneurship. Thank you once more for your continuing commitment to our Rotary Service Above Self.

Read more in the District 9400 DG Newsletter September 2022 Issue

 

The work of Rotary begins in the community, and every community has its own unique needs and concerns. Our members promote economic and community development and reduce poverty in underserved communities through training, well-paying jobs, and access to financial management institutions. Projects range from providing people with equipment to vocational training. Our members work to strengthen local entrepreneurs and community leaders, particularly women, in impoverished communities.

While we serve in countless ways, we’ve focused our efforts in seven key areas to maximize our impact. These areas encompass some of the world’s most critical and widespread humanitarian needs. Read Economic and Community Development Project Strategies, a guide for economic and community development projects. Rotary International and The Rotary Foundation have adopted seven areas of focus as organizational priorities. Rotary clubs planning new service projects are encouraged to consider these areas and the many opportunities for innovative projects within them. Here are some ideas: 

190 million people are funding their business endeavours through microfinance

  • Partner with a local microlender to improve access to financial services and provide financial infrastructure in the community.
  • Develop mobile banking resources in partnership with a microlender. Cell phones, which can be used to make deposits and transfer funds, can increase access to banking systems in developing communities.
  • When supporting service projects in a developing community, purchase goods and supplies locally to stimulate the economy and avoid unnecessary shipping fees.

1.4 billion people — nearly half of them employed — live on less than $1.25 a day

  • Expand vocational training opportunities, including job placement programming, at local non-profit organizations.
  • Send a vocational training team to teach business leaders in developing communities how to create a business plan and maintain accurate financial accounting.
  • Partner with a cooperative that provides training, joint economic ventures, and ownership of assets to its members through a democratic structure.
  • Provide equipment or supplies to a cooperative to increase production and sales in the local market.
  • Support entrepreneurs and small businesses in developing communities. The success of local business leaders can multiply employment opportunities in the community.

This month The Rotary Foundation celebrates Basic Education and Literacy. Rotary supports activities and training to improve education for all children and literacy for children and adults. The Rotary Foundation enables Rotarians to ensure that all people have sustainable access to basic education and literacy by:

  • Involving the community to support programs that strengthen the capacity of communities to provide basic education and literacy to all;
  • Increasing adult literacy in communities;
  • Working to reduce gender disparity in education;
  • Supporting studies for career-minded professionals related to basic education and literacy.

Worldwide, 67 million children have no access to education, and more than 775 million people over the age of 15 are illiterate. Rotarians support educational projects that provide technology, teacher training, vocational training teams, student meal programs, and low-cost textbooks to communities. We know that basic education and literacy are essential for reducing poverty, improving health, encouraging community and economic development, and promoting peace. Rotary clubs all over the world are taking action to enhance basic education and literacy in their communities. Every community has different needs and different opportunities to serve. The publication Basic Education and Literacy Project Strategies helps you ask the right questions, identify real needs, and make the greatest possible impact with the time, energy, and resources you have at your disposal.

Together, we can empower communities and help support basic education and literacy and reduce gender disparity in education!