This year the Rotary Club of Detroit celebrated it’s 100th anniversary, and while serving as the club president, I got the chance to attend the Rotary District 6400 conference near Chicago and the home of Rotary International. A Rotary District is a group of about 50 local Rotary clubs for a specific geographic region, and our district happens to cover part of Southeast Michigan and part of Southwest Ontario. I’ve been a member of Rotary for over 14 years, and it’s had a very big impact on my life in so many ways that I never could have anticipated. Originally I sought out Rotary because I wanted to give back, and I thought that I could accomplish more as part of a group than on my own. Rotary’s motto is Service Above Self, and I liked the idea that as a group we all had at least one thing in common and that is the desire to offer service in some way. Through the Rotary International Foundation I was able to donate money that helped people all over the world as well as right here in Michigan.
Over the years I have met so many amazing people through my involvement in Rotary, and its impacted my family as well. When my kids were in school we hosted several Rotary Youth Exchange Students over the years who truly became part of the family during their year abroad.
Rotary’s big initiative is eradicating Polio from the world, and as you can see in my new photo, we’re ‘this close’ to getting it done. There are four countries left in the world, Pakistan, Afghanistan, India and Nigeria, and together their letters spell PAIN. At the Rotary District conference our group staged a ‘flash mob’ where we all were milling around at the Millennium Park in downtown Chicago, then at a specified time we all froze holding our fingers in the ‘this close’ pose for 5 minutes. It really got some attention, other people that didn’t know what was going on were trying to figure out what we were all doing. Then after 5 minutes we all displayed matching bright red tshirts that said ‘End Polio Now’ and formed a circle holding hands around ‘the bean sculpture’ singing ‘Let there be Peace on Earth’ it was really powerful, and I was thrilled to be a part of it.
If you have an interest in giving back, I would encourage you to visit the Rotary.org website and locate a club near you to visit. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet people in the community and to learn about ways to get involved. The Detroit Rotary Club meets every Wednesday noon at the Detroit Athletic Club which is a lovely place to gather. Please call me if you would like to visit a meeting as my guest.
Have you visited a local farmers market yet this season? It seems like they are popping up all over which is great news for shoppers. The closer to home that you can purchase local produce the better it is for the local economy and it’s also helping to keep our Michigan farmers in business. I’ve often thought that the solution to obesity would be that each of us could only eat what we were able to grow on our own! When you take the time to plant a garden, weed it, water it and harvest it you get a much better appreciation for the hard work that these farmers are doing all season long. It can really make you think twice about letting something go bad in your refrigerator too.
As you read through our June issue I hope that you will find information that’s enjoyable and informative. We’ve gathered some great articles with the intention of contributing to the wellness of the men in our lives, but many of the messages are quite relevant for both men and women.
Help us to re-purpose, recycle and reuse, after you read this issue please pass it on to a friend!
Feel good, live simply, laugh more,