Proudly Rotarian or a mere rotarian?
It is certainly true that the reasons for each person joining Rotary are varied and many. For some, it the personal and business networking that motivates them, and for others, it is fellowship and sense of belonging to a world-wide organize group of people. Still for others, it is a status symbol. Whatever the reasons are, everyone has a reason. However, whether that reason is legitimate or otherwise is open to ones judgement. Sadly though, most of the reasons fundamentally don’t fit into Rotary’s primary purpose; a network of problem solvers living the mantra of “Service Above Service”.
Networking for professional and personal development is laudable, so is the quest for social recognition through association with impactful entities, and so is an opportunity to travel around the world to Rotary conferences and many other events each year. My fear is that the essence and core responsibility of being a Rotarian is being lost on many around the world, at least in my club.
Many have traveled around the world on expensive budgets to rotary events, yet they have not contributed a single cent to the Rotary Foundation, where the bulk of investments that are sunk into communities around the world come from. I simply cannot comprehend this and I am certain that there are many of us thinking alike. However, it is obvious that many of us do not feature the TRF in our priorities, and that whether one gives or not to the TRF, he or she remains a Proud Rotarian so long as he or she pays dues. This must change. Privileges come with responsibilities whether voluntary or compulsory. Whoever enjoys the privileges has an inherent moral obligation to live the responsibilities as well.
It is unbelievable that many clubs struggle to have members offering themselves up for leadership, club services, community service and even participation in club meetings, projects, and others. Being Proudly Rotarian is not just an empty accolade and status symbol. Rather, it is a call for service and commitment to hold true the driving motive of Rotary. A call to give off yourself to the world community in giving to support and strengthen the TRF to support humanitarian impactful efforts around the globe, to build strong clubs and work in our communities with our skills and professional and technical knowledge to bring happiness to our own peoples. If this is not the core of your Proudly Rotarian, I guess you are simply and unfortunately so, a mere rotarian. Just an addition to the 1.2million members.
I am a Rotarian and a Proudly so. Which one are you?