2021-22 RI President selected
Shekhar Mehta, of the Rotary Club of Calcutta-Mahanagar, West Bengal, India, is the selection of the Nominating Committee for President of Rotary International for 2021-22. He will be declared the president-nominee on 1 October if no challenging candidates have been suggested.
This week's stories
Mock interview project benefits more than just job seekers

About 70 percent of people with disabilities are unemployed or under-employed. When Cathy Bisaillon, a member of the Rotary Club of Silverdale, Washington, USA, shared that statistic with her club last fall, members sprang into action to organize a mock interview event that provided interview training to local individuals with disabilities. Bisaillon was delighted with the results, but didn't necessary anticipate the effect it would have on club members.

Club innovation

At the Rotary Club of Northern Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, USA, Thursday evening meetings rotate among different locations in the region. Members can attend remotely via Zoom conferencing. Members appreciate low dues starting at $12 a month and there is no set meal requirement. Learn more about this innovative club in the August issue of The Rotarian.

Calling all breakout sessions
Do you have an idea or project you want to share at the Rotary International Convention in Honolulu? Submit a proposal online by 29 September.  
Take part in our membership webinar
Join us on Wednesday, 28 August, for our upcoming webinar We Are Rotary: Advancing Women as Leaders. The webinar takes place 15:00-16:00 Chicago time (UTC-5).

© Rotary International
One Rotary Center, 1560 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL 60201-3698, USA



Rotary’s Learning Center reports can help you support your district in reaching its learning goals this year. Reports will tell you who in your district enrolled in, started, and completed Learning Center courses.
To use these reports, just complete the Access to Learning Center Reports course in the Learning Center. You have been enrolled in the course based on your role. To take the course:

1.       Go to rotary.org/learn.

2.      Sign in to My Rotary if you’re prompted to.

3.      Click the menu in the upper left and choose My Dashboard.

4.      If the course doesn’t appear under My Courses and Learning Plans, search for “Access to Learning Center Reports” in the search box at the top of the page.

You’ll receive your first report by email within two weeks of completing the course. You can check the leaderboard to view who has the most points for your district. Everyone in your district will be able to view both Rotary’s overall leaderboard and the one for your district.
We are adding many courses to the Learning Center, so watch for new ones in the downloadable course catalog and in our monthly newsletter, Training Talk.
We hope you find these resources helpful, and we welcome your feedback on these and other materials. Write to us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any comments or questions.

Community assessments lead to success
A community assessment is an essential first step in planning an effective project and is key to ensuring your project’s long-term success. It allows you to explore your community’s strengths, weaknesses, needs, and assets, and design your project in collaboration with those who will benefit from it. A community assessment is also required for global grants. Download the updated Community Assessment Tools handbook for more information and tips. Mike Wittry, past president of the Rotary Club of Roatan, Islas de la Bahia, Honduras, shares his experience with community assessments.
New Rotaract Certificate of Achievement

The new Rotaract Certificate of Achievement recognizes Rotaract clubs that have contributions to The Rotary Foundation of $50 or more from at least five members during the Rotary year. Learn more about Rotaract.

Paul Harris Society resource

The Paul Harris Society is a network of over 22,000 dedicated Rotary supporters in 140 countries. Society members express their intent to give at least US$1,000 each Rotary year to the Annual Fund, PolioPlus, or approved Rotary Foundation grants. Last year, donations from society members made up 16.4 percent of total contributions to the Annual Fund. Subscribe to the Paul Harris Society Quarterly Resource to learn more about this vibrant group.

Area of focus changes

We’ve made changes to Rotary’s areas of focus. We’ve kept the existing six areas but adjusted three names (marked with asterisks) to better reflect the types of projects that Rotary members are carrying out. The areas of focus are now:

  • Peacebuilding and conflict prevention*
  • Disease prevention and treatment
  • Water, sanitation, and hygiene*
  • Maternal and child health
  • Basic education and literacy
  • Community economic development*

Some of the goals of the areas have changed, and we’ve included activities that relate to the environment for most areas. The Areas of Focus Policy Statements reflect these updates.

Grant Center reminder

Before you submit your global grant application, make sure that the grant sponsors are listed correctly in the application. It’s especially important to note whether the grant is club- or district-sponsored. When this information is incorrect, it delays the processing of the grant, particularly if changes need to be made after the application is approved. More information is available in How to Use the Grant Center.

Updated grants terms and conditions

The Foundation periodically updates its grants terms and conditions to clarify them and ensure that they reflect policy changes. This updated version also has new formatting that makes it easier to use, including a section at the beginning that says what has changed since the previous version.

Grant management training materials

Grant management resources are now available in Rotary’s Learning Center (currently in English only; other languages are coming soon). Find courses on making your project sustainable, conducting community assessments, planning effective projects, managing grant finances, qualifying your club for Rotary grants, reporting on grants, and much more. Enroll in the Grant Management Seminar learning plan to become a grant management expert!

Data privacy course in the Learning Center

Do you want to learn how Rotary collects and handles the personal information you provide on My Rotary and in the Grant Center? Have you read Rotary’s recently updated privacy policy, and do you want to know how your personal data is safeguarded? If so, see the Protecting Personal Data course now on Rotary’s Learning Center. Your privacy is extremely important, and this course will inform you about how Rotary protects your personal data. You’ll also learn how to manage others’ personal data appropriately. If you have any questions about the course or Rotary’s privacy protection practices, write to us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

General resources
  • The recently updated Community Assessment Tools offers tips and resources for clubs as they conduct their community assessments, a requirement for global grants.
  • The Rotary Foundation Reference Guide provides a brief overview of Rotary Foundation programs and services.
  • A Guide to Global Grants is for all members interested in applying for global grants or developing more effective and sustainable service projects. This is a valuable training resource.
  • The updated Project Fairs page provides information about these regional events that Rotary districts host to encourage international friendship and collaboration.

© Rotary International
One Rotary Center, 1560 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL 60201-3698, USA



Membership and New Club Development Month 
August is Membership and New Club Development Month. This is the perfect time to celebrate your club’s members and consider the many options available for strengthening your membership. The following ideas can get you started:

Show your Rotary pride by adding a Proud Member frameto your profile picture on Facebook. 

Watch RI President Mark Daniel Maloneyspeak about growing Rotary and share his short membership video at your next club or district meeting. 

Welcome new members to your club with Rotary Basics. The online course covers all things Rotary in an interactive, multimedia format. The course was designed for new members, but it’s also a good refresher for long-time members who want to test their Rotary knowledge. 

Encourage local businesses, nonprofits, and government groups to get involved in Rotary by offering corporate memberships. Learn more about this innovative membership model in the Guide to Corporate Membership.

Did you know you can start a satellite club with as few as eight members? The Guide to Satellite Clubsexplains what a satellite club is, how it can benefit your community, and steps for starting one. 

Passport clubs encourage their members to visit other clubs and participate in their activities as a way to get  fresh ideas. Learn more about this club model in the new Guide to Passport Clubs

The newly updated Club Flexibility pagehas great ideas and tips for how your club can stay relevant to current and future members. 

Finally, Rotary has a series of membership courses available in the Learning Center— from managing Online Membership Leadsto Building a Diverse Club. Each course includes self-guided learning modules that let you explore real-life scenarios you might experience in your club. All membership courses are highlighted in purple. 

You can find all these resources and more at rotary.org/membership.
We Are Rotary: Advancing Women as Leaders

Join us for an upcoming webinar We Are Rotary: Advancing Women as Leaders on Wednesday, 28 August, 15:00-16:00 Chicago time (UTC-5). 

Women account for less than 25 percent of Rotary’s global membership, and are underrepresented in leadership positions at every level. Rotarians are ready to embrace change, as indicated by the record number of breakout sessions at the 2019 Rotary International Convention in Hamburg dedicated to the topic of women’s advancement in Rotary’s leadership. During one of these sessions, Rotarians Beth Keck and Todd Jenkins collected ideas from more than 500 members, both female and male, about how to take action and break down the barriers to women’s advancement in leadership positions. Hear the proposals and add your voice to this critical conversation.

Everyone who registers will be asked to share some thoughts before the webinar, and will also be provided access to the recording and slides after the webinar ends. 

A look at Rotary’s current members

Rotary conducts the Membership Experience Feedback Survey every year to better understand the needs, interests, and engagement of our prospective, current, and former members. Our last newsletter featured survey results of prospective members.  

This issue spotlights feedback from current members. Here’s how they responded to the question: Why have you remained a member of your Rotary club?

  • To participate in local service projects
  • For friendship and fellowship
  • To connect with others outside of work and my circle of friends 

Read more about the survey results in the Current Members Executive Summary

Watch for survey results about Rotary’s former members in the October issue.

3 ways to make your club more inclusive
As a global network that strives to build a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change, Rotary values diversity and celebrates the contributions of people of all backgrounds, regardless of their age, ethnicity, race, color, abilities, religion, socioeconomic status, culture, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity. 

One way to make your club inclusive is to make it more accessible. Consider meeting at different venues, eliminating meals, or changing your billing structure. Findmore ways to make your club welcoming to all. 
Grow Rotary
RI President Mark Daniel Maloney has several ideas for how Rotary leaders can “grow our membership so that we can achieve more.” Starting new Rotary clubs and offering innovative membership models are just two options that can increase membership. Read about more ideas in Rotary Leader
Membership Minute is a bimonthly newsletter that provides the latest membership trends, strategies, best practices, and resources to help strengthen membership in your clubs. The newsletter is sent to Rotary coordinators, district governors, district membership chairs, club membership chairs, club presidents and subscribers. Please forward this to anyone who may be interested. 

One Rotary Center, 1560 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL 60201-3698, USA

© Rotary International



My journey to Hiroshima: reflections on memory

By Lorena Rodriguez, 2017-19 Rotary Peace Fellow, International Christian University, Tokyo, Japan

Last March, I visited Hiroshima with other Rotary Peace Fellows from International Christian University, hearing stories from survivors of the atomic bomb. Thanks to the Rotary Club of Hiroshima, we also saw the Peace Memorial Park and Museum. Hiroshima is full of stories told and illustrated in various ways: in the images, monuments, poems, and human and nonhuman survivors. All these stories made me reflect in different ways about my commitment to memory and peace.

 When we were walking through the Peace Memorial Park we encountered the “Monument in Memory of the Korean Victims of the A-bomb,” a tower which stands on a large turtle-shaped base. The top of the tower is a crown engraved with two dragons and a register of the names of over 2,500 Koreans who were killed when the bomb exploded. The inscription on the monument says “Souls of the dead ride to heaven on the backs of turtles.” The monument was built in 1970 but only brought inside the park in 1999. Koreans comprised more than ten percent of the Hiroshima A-bomb victims, and many of them were discriminated against before and after the bombing.

Seeing this monument made me realize the importance of collective memory. In Japan, the narratives of the A-bomb talk little about the experiences of Koreans, their struggles, and their place in rebuilding Japan from the ashes. Allowing for multiple experiences can help us discover other collective identities that have been hidden after conflict and improve our understandings of our relationships with the others.


The Monument in Memory of the Korean Victims of the A-bomb.


A-bombed trees tell a story

On our second day, we listened to ANT-Hiroshima describe their “legacy of the A-bombed trees” project. After the atomic bombing, it was said that “nothing would grow again in Hiroshima for 75 years.” However, within about a two kilometer radius of the hypocenter are 160 trees, comprised of 31 species, which survived the atomic bombing and are registered as “hibakujumoku” (A-bombed trees). These trees served as evidence of life and hope for the human survivors. I saw how today the A-bombed trees continue to stand and to grow with the marks of burn scars on their trunks, illustrations of what those trees “saw” before, during, and after the A-bomb.

Seeing the trees and hearing from the survivors who founded the project, I had my second reflection, how we often leave out the “unspeakable” experiences of other species in our histories. Nature is also a victim of war and conflict. Its narratives are seeds of peace for future generations who will read the horror through its scars.

After my visit, I did more research about social movements in Japan and I found that many local initiatives among survivors not only support nuclear disarmament, but are against nuclear energy. Survivors of atomic radiation are also strongly opposed to modifying Article 9, in which Japan “renounces war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes.”

The role of collective memory

I believe the collective memories of victims of nuclear events should have a prominent place in the dialogues and debates on matters like nuclear energy and Article 9. Peace starts by rejecting means of violence and by honoring the spirit of pacifism.

As a Colombian and Rotary Peace Fellow, I think that memory can reveal forms of structural violence, resulting from dynamics of injustice and power, that are not readily connected with the actors of a conflict. Memory reminds us that society as a whole needs to take steps toward diplomacy, dialogue, and community building. I am deeply grateful to the Rotary Club of Hiroshima for the opportunity to visit Hiroshima. My experiences have shaped my understanding of peace and resilience, and have given me different viewpoints that I will share in my future as a peace ambassador.

Learn more about Rotary Peace Fellowships.