RI President 2021-22 Shekhar Mehta-
Dear Fellow Rotarians, Rotaractors, and friends,
At the start of the Rotary year, I challenged every club to plan
and host at least one practical and action-oriented Rotary Day of
Service. The event should address a challenge your community is
facing that fits into one or more of Rotary’s areas of focus
and should bring together volunteers from within and outside of
Rotary Days of Service can motivate Rotary, Rotaract, and Interact
clubs to plan innovative and impactful projects. They can showcase
your work as people of action and introduce prospective members
to your club.
I’ve been inspired by your response so far, and I want to
share with you just one project that has captured my imagination.
India is home to an estimated 74 million people with diabetes, a
disease that is a leading cause of death. Furthermore, about 50
percent of those people remain undiagnosed.
Rotary, together with the Research Society for the Study of Diabetes
in India, saw the urgent need to diagnose, track, and treat people
who have diabetes. Working together and with other organizations,
we hosted a nationwide blood glucose testing camp on 29 September,
which is World Heart Day.
The camp was spread across more than 10,000 sites in India, with
more than 2,000 Rotary and Rotaract clubs participating in the effort.
More than 1 million blood-sugar tests were conducted in a day, an
accomplishment recognized by the Asia Book of Records. But more
important than breaking a record is the fact that tens of thousands
of people learned that they may be living with diabetes. They can
now be treated for the condition, and they also have been made aware
that they should take extra measures to shield themselves from COVID-19
and scores of other diseases that are caused or worsened by diabetes.
This month, on 23 February, the anniversary of Rotary, let us celebrate
with more service days, showcasing Rotary’s work in our areas
of focus. I look forward to hearing about your Rotary Days of Service.
Please share your projects on Rotary Showcase, or browse that webpage
to find inspiration and project partners. In particular, I encourage
you to execute projects that focus on empowering girls, as they
have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. The Empowering
Girls initiative is resonating very well with members of Rotary
as well as with non-Rotarians. The governments and NGOs in various
countries are appreciating this meaningful effort. Let us keep focusing
I am also happy that the Each One, Bring One ethos is bringing fruitful
results. Let us ensure that all club members introduce at least
one person to Rotary, and that we then all work to engage new members
and keep them in our clubs.
In whatever we do, remember that we must push ourselves to grow
more, do more as we Serve to Change Lives.
Trustee Chair's Message - February2022
Trustee Chair 2021-22
I always look forward to February, the month of Rotary’s
anniversary, as a time to remember our history. What
began as a small gathering in a Chicago office in
1905 soon transformed into a global movement —
one that you and I are a part of today.
February is also Peacebuilding and Conflict Prevention
Month, when we celebrate a core Rotary concept: the
pursuit of global peace and understanding.
Through our global and district grants, The Rotary
Foundation is a force for peace — as are all
of you who use those funds for projects. A grant that
promotes literacy can lead to greater understanding
and economic security in that community and beyond.
This lays the foundation for peace. When communities
aren’t fighting over scarce water resources,
because they have a working pump system, they can
instead pursue education. Promoting peace is interwoven
in all that Rotary does.
The work of actively building peace and understanding
has been a hallmark of Rotary since its earliest days.
But with the creation in 1999 of the Rotary Peace
Centers we began a bold new chapter in this story.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the inaugural
class of peace fellows; the innovative program continues
to merge a strong, academic understanding of the roots
of conflict with practical tactics for solving real-world
Despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the
Rotary Peace Centers were able to adapt, ensuring
minimal disruptions to the program. Now, students
at our seven centers are resuming their normal activities.
This includes young peacebuilders at our newest center
at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda, who are
preparing to apply their new knowledge and skills
in a region that’s in need of peaceful solutions.
The peace center program keeps growing. Our search
committee is researching potential locations in the
Middle East or North Africa to establish our eighth
center, with plans for its launch as soon as 2024.
This is a significant step for Rotary’s efforts
in global peace education, as we lay the groundwork
for the next generation of fellows to pursue peacebuilding
in that region. And we aren’t stopping there:
Our goal is to open a Rotary Peace Center in Latin
America by 2030.
In the last 117 years, Rotary has grown to become
a global force for good — promoting peace and
understanding in all of our endeavors. The staying
power of Rotary, the Foundation, and our decades-long
commitment to peace are things that are worth celebrating,
supporting, and sustaining for the generations that
will follow us.
John F. Germ
Trustee Chair 2021-22
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