Graeme's Message, 7 August 2014

Rotarians and friends

August is Membership month!

This week we will induct a new member Joanna Attard. Jo has attended a number of meetings in her capacity as Community Engagement Officer for the Maribyrnong City Council. Most recently our club has been involved with Jo with the running of the Bike Shed project. I look forward to inducting Jo and having her involved in our club.

Membership Chair, Kevin Field has been interviewing other prospective members and on our special membership meeting on August 14th there are plans for further inductions. Bob Slater from District Membership Committee will be our visiting speaker on that day. It goes without saying that members are the cornerstone of Rotary – without members clubs cannot serve the community. Jim Henry PDG –District 6960 from Rotary Club of Sarasota put it this way in “Rotary on the Move” May 2014. “The only purpose of Rotary International (R.I.) and its member clubs is to create Rotarians. Their objective is to advance the Object of Rotary. That objective doesn't have a chance of being achieved without first creating Rotarians just like competitions cannot be won without first creating athletes and businesses cannot turn a profit without first creating customers.” Please consider how you as a member can contribute to increasing membership. 

District 9800 are also holding a special membership event “Club Survival Workshop” on Saturday, 30 August. Details attached. RI President Gary Huang has posted a message relevant to membership included in this Bulletin and there is also a video version on the RI website.

Last week we welcomed Daniel Charles from “Run to Better Days” and a full report is included in the Bulletin. It is refreshing to hear of the efforts of community minded young people who wish to improve the lot of those in the world suffering poverty. On July 30th the “World Day Against Human Trafficking in Persons” was observed. According the UN website at any given time, an estimated 2.5 million people are trapped in modern-day slavery. Both its ancient and modern forms, it is not only shameful, it is as the abolitionist John Wesley said “the execrable sum of all villanies,” and has no place in our world. In 2010, the UN General Assembly adopted the Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons and declared that such a day was necessary to “raise awareness of the situation of victims of human trafficking and for the promotion and protection of their rights.” Continued efforts by Rotarians and organisations like “Run to Better Days” will have small but incremental impact on poverty and help reduce the incidence of this inhumane practice.