Thursday, September 19, 2013

What Impact Do You Have In This World?

Sometimes we all need a reminder. We go to our Rotary meeting every week, we discuss different projects and listen to speakers, but we need to be reminded every now and then about the real power that can be found in Rotary. All too often we get caught up in the minutia and forget about the way that Rotary has changed and continues to impact lives around the world.

This is why I always enjoy the meetings that bring our District Governor to our club. Our current Governor, Charles E. Streitwieser brought his years of experience and his dedication to our meeting yesterday and we are all better for it. Since joining Rotary in 1996 he has been a driving force in our district and a tremendous influence both within Rotary and in the community. As a member of the Rotary Club of West Chester, his most gratifying assignments have been to serve on his club’s Task Force for Community Needs Assessment and its New Member Mentors Committee. These efforts helped the club to grow to become the largest club in our District.

Charles is not only cognizant of the local impact that rotary has on changing lives but he is acutely aware of the global importance of the Rotary. Most notably, he pointed out, is the role that Rotary plays in transcending religion, politics, and geographic barriers. Whether it is mediating conflicts along the Israel-Palestine boarder, unifying humanitarian efforts between India and Pakistan, or taking part in global initiatives through the United Nations, Rotary has stood the test of time and continues to elevate its reputation as an organization that promotes peace, cooperation, and unity among all the citizens of this world.

These are the things that we commonly lose sight of in our daily lives and our weekly meetings. Our international and district officers are the people that keep our eyes open to the world around us in a way that is unbiased and altruistic in nature. The immediate impact of our work is not just felt within our own community. It takes action to create action and Rotary serves as the catalyst in making waves in this world.

However, the impact of our work is not just felt by others. Our work and the work of our fellow Rotarians, impacts our own lives in a way that is difficult to measure. All of us who feel this passion and see the good that is being down through this organization that we all care so deeply about bind us all together. We are individuals but we are also one, we are Rotary.

It is this community that we constantly nurture and the work that springs forth from this connectivity that can serve and should serve as the driving force behind attracting new members. We all have something valuable to contribute regardless of age or profession. Just like any other family, Rotary must grow and in doing so nurture and guide the lives and actions of younger Rotarians. Despite the ever increasing connectivity, the world is still a vast place and Rotary extends a helping hand into every corner of this planet. This is an experience that cannot be kept to ourselves and we look forward to giving everyone the opportunity of being that hand of help.

This is the impact that Rotary has on the world. We can change lives and, by doing so change, the world. And we can share this opportunity with others. We all exist in this world but how many of us take action and decide to live? This is what we can achieve through Rotary.