November is the month dedicated to the Rotary Foundation, a month when we can profoundly understand what this organization means. I hope you can find in the Rotary Foundation programs the opportunities you need for your projects to support the community you are a part of. It is the perfect occasion to remember that everything we do (raising money, doing projects) is done out of generosity, affection, compassion, dedication and friendship. We should celebrate together the Rotary spirit through everything we think, say and do, this is what makes the difference.
Why are we different? What makes the difference? It’s ACTIONS. Our actions speak the loudest.
We become Rotarians by acting and having results, by being constant and by sustaining values. Becoming a Rotarian is a long process, where the 4-Way Test becomes our inner compass. Only then can we really understand what Rotary is, what our purpose is and what unites us to the rest of the Rotarians in the world. Through this prism we can understand what People of Action and Rotary Connects the World mean.
Through everything we do, we build the future, the legacy we leave for the generations to come. We owe our children a better world than the one we found and we must teach them to do the same. We must show the world the impact of our actions, not to boast about them, but to show them it can be done and to inspire them.
Rotary is the only organization that has a foundation, a common donations fund. Let me carry you through our history so you can better understand who we are and where we are going.
More than a 100 years ago, a few people with a great vision gathered together to make sure the next generations are successful.
1917: Rotary International President, Arch C. Klumph, proposed the creation of a common donations fund, to help the world. The first donation was of $26.50. After that, the fund was called The Rotary Foundation and it became a distinct entity within Rotary International.
1919: The Foundation made its first donation of $500, to the International Society for Disabled Children.
1919: the first Foundation program, the forerunner of the Ambassadorial Scholarship of the Rotary Foundation
1965-66: three new programs are launched: Group Study Exchange, awards for technical instruction and grants for activities in accordance with the Rotary Foundation’s objective, later called Matching Grants
1978: Health, Hunger and Humanity Grants — 3-H Grants
1980: Rotary Volunteers
1986: Scholarships for University Professors
1987-88: the first peace forums and programs for the study of peace and conflict.
During all this time, the Rotary Foundation has grown immensely. From its first donation of $26.50, in 1917, the Foundation has received donations of over $1 billion.
Only during 2003-2004, over $70 million was donated.
Until now, more than a million people who have donated $1000 to the Annual Program Fund, or who had this amount donated for them, have received the Paul Harris Fellows distinction.
Such strong support, together with the rotarians involved around the world and the partners who have joined our mission, assure a strong future for the Rotary Foundation, while it continues its vital activity for international and world peace.
The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty. The Foundation is a non-profit corporation, supported by the contributions of Rotarians and their friends, of those who share the same vision of a better world.
Paul Harris said that whatever Rotary means for you and me, the world will know us through our results. We are committed to serving above self and we are not afraid to dream big or set bold goals. Our mission that started in the 1980s seemed impossible for most, but today, 30 years later, polio cases have been reduced by 99.9%. We CAN. But we CAN only do it together.
We are a nation of people who change this world through the service above self. Our contribution to the Rotary Foundation assures the resources our members need to project and implement durable projects, year after year.
The Rotary Foundation heightens the value of our donations, keeping and investing the initial contribution and only spending part of the profit. This strategy supports Rotary causes today, while generating funds that will help the activities of the future rotarians.
If you or your friends wish to annually support the Rotary Foundation, you can become members of the Paul Harris Society. The Society awards people who contribute with at least $1000 annually towards the annual programs, PolioPlus, PolioPlus Partners or the Humanitarian Grants program. Regardless of the amount, you can already see the lives of people and communities changing. What you do today will shape the next century of service. Your legacy is Rotary’s promise.
Since 1917 until now, the Rotary Foundation has spent over $3.7 billion to help people and communities through projects for clean water, sanitation, education, peace and ending polio. For more than 100 years we have proved that we are here to leave behind a better world, and now our impact can be amplified. Through the money gathered by the Foundation we can do projects that have huge measurable impact.
Between 22-24 November you can attend the annual training seminar of the Rotary Foundation that the clubs must attend to get their MOU. MOU is indispensable for the clubs that implement Global Grants, the money that comes from the Rotary Foundation that can be used to do projects that have a big and measurable impact. Find here all the information you need – http://www.evenimenterotary.ro
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