I am a Rotarian.
To be a Rotarian does not require a certain level of wealth or station in life. It is made up of every day people with a positive outlook on life. They only ask really one thing of you. Believe There is Good in the World and strive to Be The Good! Sounds a little corny looking in from the outside but really it is just asking everyday people to put ‘service above self’ or to help others if you are able. It was not a big life change or a stretch of character for me to accept this ideal. Rotary is one of three volunteer groups I am currently involved in and it allows me to meet and interact with some of the most interesting people.
Fundraising for Charity.
Yes Rotarians are always holding Charity Events. Yes we are always selling tickets for these events or for raffles and draws. The purpose of these events is to raise money so we can in turn help others. Most of our events the actual Rotary Members have donated or sponsored well above the expectation of the members. We care and take pride in our efforts. We like to put FUN in Funraising. This month is the Charity Blues night at the George Hamilton downtown Hamilton. In May we have the annual Silent Auction Gala at Michelangelo’s Events Centre on the Upper Ottawa street. Two companies that have gone above and beyond to support our causes.
Where does the Money Go?
We research local charities and causes, we have presentations from local groups and from other Rotary Clubs around the world that are doing good in their community and need our assistance. We allocate 98% of the funds we raise to go directly into the causes we find worthy, sincere and honest. We have vetted them financially and ethically before we commit a penny. We have a club foundation that is set up for annual scholarships for students of need in the local downtown core. We have the Rotary International foundation that we have supported since it’s start over thirty years ago. This Foundation is so well trusted and run that famous people like Bill Gates have made donations and commitments over the years to ensure that their wealth gets where it needs to be. Along with the numerous charities and non profits that we post on our website there are often times emergencies that come up and it is good to have resources to assist these situations as soon as they develop.
Is it hard to become a Rotarian?
No it is very easy to become a Rotarian. You attend meetings as a guest at the dozen or so clubs in the greater Hamilton area. You figure out which location and time fits you best and that the membership fits your ideals . Everyone at the local Rotary Club level is a volunteer. Each local Rotary Club is made up of individual business people and local citizens who hold a vocational chair at the table. This variety often makes the dynamic of the club vary and some clubs may not appeal to one person but another may. I attended numerous clubs as a guest speaker and was asked to join many of them. There is an application to join that needs to be submitted and a casual get together over coffee with a couple of the club’s board members before your are invited to join. Basically if you follow the Rotary Four Way Test you will fit right in.
The Rotary Four Way Test
Is it the TRUTH?
Is it FAIR to all concerned?
Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?”
How Much Time does Rotary Take of your Personal Time?
You get out of Rotary what you put into it. There is a level of participation that is expected of you for meeting attendance. If you are someone who likes to volunteer and participate at all the events then you will be busy. If you would prefer to take on different roles or activities within the club that interest you or is something within your comfort zone than you will not be so busy. I like social media and enjoy working with websites and emails so I incorporated my experience into the club website www.grrr8ideas.org and Facebook Page. I spend maybe an hour a week updating information and creating social media posts. This is something I already do for my company and other groups. I have taken on other challenges within the club and assisted in running the Annual Gala and the Blues Night. I have represented the club at science fairs, toured non profits and local businesses, attended the regional training seminars and the annual convention. It is rewarding and always fun. This June I am taking a ‘victory lap’ and once again sitting in the hot seat as the Club President. It will be busy and there is some added pressure to keep the ship pointed towards our goals.
Come for Lunch On ME!
We meet for lunch at high noon every second and fourth Thursday of the month in the upstairs board room of the Royal Canadian Legion Stoney Creek on King Street. Free Parking in the back for two hours. If you are interested in discussing the possibility of joining or just want to get your toes wet, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 905-522-4621