4 Feb


IA in a word WOW. As an event it underlines our surname is INTERNATIONAL. It is also about Connecting, Sharing and Identifying Resources amongst our peers whilst undergoing the final preparations for our DG year. 6 long days short nights. It was exhiliarating. Working together we CAN accomplish anything.

So 6 takeaways to share

1. the Wall, Pearl Harbour and the H-Bomb,  we all know them. Unsurprisingly for a Japanese President Elect these 3 events in human history are  significant generators for his

Theme : PEACE through Service

” Through our Rotary service, we know that cooperation is more productive than conflict… … In Rotary our business is peace.”

Sakuji Tanaka has transformed the sites of these  3 events into places for hope where in 2012-2013 we are asked to  Participate in  3 Rotary Global Peace Forums in Berlin, Honolulu, Hiroshima; and for clubs and Districts to undertake activities to promote Peace Through Service.

2.CONTINUITY and CHANGE are interdependent. Pres Bannerjee reminded Its not about us. Its not even about the work we do. Its about the work that gets done. Pres Elect Tanaka reiterated that

“In business and in life , in order to get where you want, you have to know where you are going”…with a renewed commitment to Adopt the goals of the RI Strategic Plan in 2012-2013. With its 3 equal priorities 1 Support and Strengthen our Clubs ( heart of Rotary) 2. Increase our Service 3. Enhance our Public Image and Awareness.

3. Our Foundation of Choice TRF Goals for 2012-2013 were  outlined by Chair-elect Wilf Wilkinson.

  1. Polio eradication.
  2. Focus in 2012-2013 : building a better world by seeking Peace thro Service
  3. Build and Strengthen Annual Fund.
  4. Preparing for Future Vision launch . Our new grant making process

Bill Boyd urged Districts to “ Keep Pushing Boundaries…” in his Future Vision Update ”Future Vision will make our Rotary more exciting and enjoyable.”

Bill Boyd’s 8 Tips for getting ready for Future Vision.

• For nonpilot districts, have your preparations as soon as possible, so that the launch for you will be easy.

• Don’t try to make the old procedures fit the new model…this is a whole new ball game

• There is now more flexibility in areas such as scholarships, but allow yourself enough time to plan them properly

• Close those Matching Grant reports, so that you can focus on the future.

• Think big! Think outcomes rather than addressing symptoms and not causes.

• Get used to using your computer for grant applications and for information. Its all there online.

• The regional Rotary Foundation coordinators are specially trained to help you. Use them.

• To our pilot districts, I urge you to keep pushing the boundaries, for your successes will inspire the rest of us……..



 Jeff Raikes, CEO Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Then came the ANNOUNCEMENT : We have met USD200M challenge Gates reaches USD 405M with additional USD50M award to recognise Rotary’s early completion.END POLIO has become a sexy cause again.

4. Speaking on Your Support from RI general secretary John Hewko spelt out his 5 priorities

  1. Polio eradication. Our signature global initiative since 1985. We must Finish the job
  2. Operationalise the new Strategic Plan. …translate the Plan into concrete initiatives, so that it becomes a living document
  3. Developing Rotary Club Central. A new online tool to capture the the total value of all of the service projects we undertake each year
  4. Membership. Given Rotary is a truly global organisation where one size does not fit all.. There is now 3 year regional membership plans tailored to specific regional needs and challenges. Focus on appealing to younger members, …expanding e-Clubs…greater flexibility with attendance requirements…. a single brand for Rotary …revamping our website improving its functionality and making it more user friendly…developing a comprehensive social media strategy”

Rotarians need to start living where the rest of the world lives, and that world is increasingly in cyberspace. Did you know 1/7 world’s population is on Facebook?

  1. Bring Rotary more fully into the ranks of the major players of global humanitarian assistance and development. Leveraging Rotary 1.2million members in private public partnerships recognised keys to longterm, sustainable solutions for many developing countries

5.  Membership Building Rotary, Our First Priority.

Monty Audenart , Chair Membership Development and Retention Committee restated. ” We need new Generations, qualified women…. We need a fence in Rotary called a retention plan.”  Sitting on the tarmac on a delayed flight  from San Diego I chanced upon the phrase in an inflight mag NEXT GENERATION which I think is a fitting description for the new Rotary club model. Rotary is not ours until we share it.

Jennifer Jones  Rotary Public Image Coordinator, Zone 29 tells us HOW .Telling our stories effectively There is Power in Sharing Our Rotary Moment “A Rotary moment is when the magic begins…. We must tell our story inspiring our family,friends,communities …..its one way how we create peace…One story at a time.”

6. Finally, Rotary is in our Hands. Tanaka Sakuji IA Closing remarks say it all by ….. asking we turn plans into specific goals: using the Japanese expression Watashi shidai! It is up to us. It is up to us to set goals. It is up to us to achieve them. It is up to us to help other people, so that they can help themselves. And it is up to us to put Service Above Self, and build a world of Peace Through Service…”

More on IA Fun & Fellowship in December post of PORTRAIT part 2 of a Thrillseeker on the DG Rollercoaster

Acknowledgements:  Rotary Images and RI Speechbook 2012 International Assembly San Diego, California.

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