During the second lunch meeting in this new Rotary year, our fellow Rotarian Stephen Thompson highlighted us on information on Rotary International. Stephen also writes articles in our newsletter "The Leader"

Follow the the link to "Stephen's Scribbles RCSM Year 38 Art. 1".


Stephen's Scribbles RCSM Year 38 Art. 1


Rotary is a multi level organisation.


Here we operate as a club. For example, we take Senior Citizens on an annual cruise around Simpson Bay Lagoon. They look forward to it all year.


We operate as a district. Look at the story at rotary.org today - 1.7 M meals to hungry Haiti, organised from scratch by your friend IPDG Dick McCombe. I send Dick 1.7 million congratulations. Fantastic job.


Then look at what RI is achieving on the world stage. In 23 years worldwide new Polio infections have been cut by 99.5%, from 350,000 per year in 1985 to 1,313 in 2007. $3,000 million raised. 2,000 million plus children vaccinated. 5 million children spared disability or death. Then Rotary is the world's largest NGO provider of scholarships and Rotary started the world's only Peace Colleges endowed at 7 top universities worldwide.


Imagine the power of Rotary. Which political or religious or business or NGO or military leader would not grant an audience to his or her local Rotarians?

Rotarians, we are everywhere. From grass roots to high office - school teachers, astronauts, doctors, police officers, nurses and oil tycoons. From the Cape to Siberia Rotary is firm in 200+ countries. There is nothing like Rotary on the planet. Rotary's best days are yet to come.


Some of us play at business. We have some understanding of money. The Polio Eradication Campaign has spent US$ 3,000 million so far. (US$ 700 million in cash has come from voluntary donations by Rotarians). This is the kind of will and power and influence that we have.


We know that this money does not grow on trees. A Paul Harris Fellow costs $1000. The PH Society is a person or an organisation who or that agrees to donate $1000 every year. Some clubs, like ours, give every year and sometimes we give a lot. We need some members to become PH society members and we need some Major Donors. A Major Donor is one who has contributed a total of $10,000 to TRF. Let me know if you are even vaguely interested.


Being a PHF is a great honour. But some of us have been PHFs for 20 and 30 years, before Polio Plus was even invented. Perhaps it is time to consider another donation. If you cannot afford it, no problem, you can help Rotary in many other ways.


But if you could afford it and gave $1000, or another $1000, or $1000 every year or more, I don't know where you could get better value for money than from this Rotary International organisation. Life on our planet does not seem to get easier, certainly not for the underprivileged, far far away or very close to home. Rotary has enormous human resources, intelligence and foresight. Rotary is making a difference. And Rotary's best days are indeed still to come.