First let me thank President David for his leadership over the last TWO years and I thank him for continuing in the role over an extraordinary year. 2020 and into this current year has presented particular challenges for Rotary locally, nationally and internationally and David’s experience, guidance and leadership have been appreciated. The club has not just survived but has thrived with new members joining. [A turnout of 19 is fantastic and very encouraging!]
Following on from speaking to the new DG Betty McDonald, just to confirm and repeat some good news: You’ll be aware that in 2019 RI had advised us that if we didn’t grow our numbers in the district to 1101 by a deadline of 30th June this year, we would have to merge with another district.
Fortunately, the RI Board decided to let District 1230 have another extension. There will be no steps towards a merger at this time. We do have until 30th June 2022 to turn things around. Of course that applies to every club in the district including ours, so it will be no surprise to find out what the new DG’s priority is. More of which later.
Rotary has a strategic Vision Statement
"Together we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe and in ourselves".
Not easy to realise all that while we’re living through these uncertain times, but certainly a statement of aspiration.
With continuing uncertainty around Coronavirus, we are in uncharted waters and change will be foisted upon us. How we will change is uncertain but we will still be putting service before self.
Nobody likes change but my goal and role as your (future) president is for us in this club to embrace it. Because if we don’t we’re in trouble. But Rotary is, almost by definition, full of clever and resourceful people so we *will* find a way.
Our District also has a Vision Statement:
“Let’s build connections and opportunities that will allow us to invite people who share our drive and enthusiasm to do the same and grow Rotary in the West of Scotland.”
District Governor Betty has put her emphasis on growth and asks us to make the following areas our main Priorities and Objectives
So the District priorities are: continuing with our polio programme, growing Rotary and working towards a more diverse membership, protecting the environment at home and elsewhere. Does the club agree that we should adopt the District priorities? Yes.
Incoming RI President Shekhar Mehta has said that his vision is for Rotary to become the most recognised service organisation in the world. Among other things he wants to have Rotary nominated for the Noble Peace Prize for our work on polio. He also asks us, reminds us, of our overriding principle: service before self.
Realistically, there will probably not be too much that we can do out in the community right now. The country still isn’t fully opened up, and there is a further delay announced this week, which affects what we can do, including with schools where the virus is still very present.
But we can plan for a brighter future, we can still meet online and we will meet again at the Park Hotel, we can still keep in touch and it’s important that we do. To that end I fully intend to get back to the activities in the community that we were doing before: the primary schools quiz and other competitions, the paired reading, perhaps a Burns Supper or similar, the community engagement, the social weekend, contributing to worthy people and causes, and of course recruiting new members. A busy Rotary making an impact on our community and the wider world. In due course I will be asking committee convenors to discuss all this and share their plans as we regroup after our enforced sabbatical.
This is a time where Rotary is needed in the world and in our communities, more than ever. Thank you.
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