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Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The HEART of Rotary is not Service.

The HEART of Rotary is the Object of Rotary, and it continually pumps Rotary's lifeblood,  the ideal of service, throughout the Rotary network.

Humans have brains, hands, arms, legs and feet that will function as long as they have a constant supply of lifeblood.  Rotary International (RI) has over 35,000-member clubs that will function as long as they have a constant supply of lifeblood.  What is critical for Rotary's governing body to understand is that Rotary's lifeblood is not service, it is the ideal of service.
     Rotarians should realize that Rotary is alive because Rotary's heart continually pumps the ideal throughout its network.  Rotarians, living the ideal each in their own way, use their brains, hands, arms, legs and feet to build connections and bring awareness that improves their local social fabrics and strengthens Rotary's worldwide network. 
     The ideal manifests itself in many different ways.  For example:

  • Rotarians in India overcome many social and logistical difficulties to build a water reservoir. 
  • Rotarians in metropolitan and suburban clubs use influence and money to help teachers improve student reading skills and graduation rates in local schools.
  • Rotarians in Argentina obtain a Global Grant to furnish equipment to help a school for the blind. 
  • Rotarians in Africa find individual donors and volunteers to help rural area schools.
  • Rotarians in North Carolina provide beds to help families stabilize their housing situation.
  • A Rotarian anywhere in the world helps a stranger in need.
  • Rotarians undertake a worldwide project to eliminate a crippling disease, starting in their own local social fabric and spreading globally.

     Humans continually check on their heart's health by monitoring their blood pressure and understanding the numbers.  They do not even try to monitor its result - the lifetime accomplishments of the heart's body.  RI should measure its heart's health by monitoring its RG Index and understanding the numbers.  It should not waste resources trying to remain healthy by monitoring its heart's result - the quantity of service projects, volunteer hours, and/or dollars contributed by clubs and/or Rotarians.

 Humans' body parts cease to function when they stop receiving lifeblood.  RG Indexes would identify regions of the Rotary network where the supply of lifeblood is dangerously low; where caring RI leaders who are properly prepared and supported would take corrective actions. 

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