Thursday, February 17, 2005

100 Successful Years of Rotary

Business Times p.B1
Thursday, February 17, 2005

By Moje Ramos-Aquino, FPM
Value-creation processes for 100 successful years of Rotary

District 3780 under hard­-working, dedicated and handsome Gov. George Howard will celebrate with the entire Rotary International family worldwide its centennial anniversary with a weeklong District Convention this February 17 to 23.

Why are good-hearted people drawn to the Rotary and give their time, wealth and energy selflessly? In business parlance, what are the key value creation processes of the Rotary organization?

People become involved in Rotary because of a combination of varied activities that adds up to enabling Rotarians to give service above self. According to the RI President’s Manual, these are:

First is fellowship, one of the main reasons people join Rotary. Although the club may conduct specific fellowship activities, fellowship among Rotarians is more than an event that occurs once or twice a year. Celebrating friendships and camaraderie is a regular part of every club meeting, project and activity.

One of the things I like about being a Rotarian is the equal status accorded every Rotarian. You might be an executive in your own company, but in Rotary you are simply a Rotarian. Everybody is on a first name basis. Titles are given to those who contribute and serve in projects and as club or district officers. In a club like RC Quezon City North, everybody is an officer.

Second is service that enables the Rotarians to participate in local or international service projects that can instill a sense of pride and ownership in club activities and service efforts, encourage members to expand service activity by regularly discussing important issues facing the community and the world and demonstrate that individuals, through cooperation and through Rotary, can improve their communities and the world.

Every Rotarian acts on their belief that everyone can make a difference in making communities and the world a better place to live in. The most successful project, among many others, is the Polio Plus, which has helped eradicate the menace of polio globally.

In the Philippines some of the favorite projects of Rotarians are feeding of malnourished children, micro financing for community livelihood projects, literacy, provision of potable water and poverty alleviation like skills development. One of the things that Rotary does not do is to give outright dole outs. They believe in the adage: Give people fish and they will eat for one day. Teach people how to fish and they will eat for the rest of their lives.

For Rotary Year 2005-06, DGE Benjie Bacorro and RC Quezon City North will embark on a skills upgrading project for teachers.

They believe that the messenger is equally important as the message and when you develop the teaching skills of teachers, you increase the learning opportunities for students.

The third success-inducing process of Rotary is networking. Rotary provides ample opportunity for club members to make contact with other civic-minded individuals, build business opportunities, and share expertise and advice unique to their own professions.

Rotarians from all over the world visit each other. Recent visitors of RCQCN are Rotarians from Japan (RC East Osaka Central, Kyoto Yamashiro, Tokyo Kyoto and Oji-Nara), PDG Keith Hooper of RC Smith Center, Kansas and PDG Geoff McLennan of Tasmania, Australia. We were also visited by PP Tony Mateo of RC San Miguel Manila.

The Rotarians work hard and play hard. But at the end of the day they know how to enthuse and motivate fellow Rotarians. The process of Recognition is very much imbedded in Rotary at the club, district and International levels. Rotarians recognize excellence in club management, active participation in service activities, contribution and support of The Rotary Foundation.

You don’t apply to become a Rotarian, you are invited to be one. But if you are interested in Rotary, please call CP Lore Veneracion at the RCQCN Soup Kitchen, Food Bank and Training Center at 4307666 and 9398288 or DG George at the Rotary Center at 4123269 and 4119062).

Moje, president of Paradigms & Paradoxes Corp, is the president-elect of the RC Quezon City North for RY 2005-2006 and needs all the support and assistance she could get from everybody who cares for the less fortunate among us)

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