April 15, 2021
Rotary Offers a Cure for Pandemic Fatigue
What is Rotary? In short, it is the world’s oldest service organization with over 1.2million members in over 200 countries. And what sort of service does it provide? Well, if you can dream it, we can do it. And I say “we” because I am a proud Rotarian.
Every Rotary Club has its own personality and is directed by the individual members. But the power behind Rotary is both its people and their collective might: we’ve got a foundation with over $1 billion in assets, and Rotary has distributed over $4 billion in grants worldwide since its inception.
This foundation allows us to get involved with much larger projects than any individual club could pursue on its own. One major focus for us is polio eradication. As our website explains: “Rotary is a leading partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. With help from our partners, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, we’ve made the world 99.9 percent polio-free.”
It is no wonder that an organization with immunization experience is jumping in to help with COVID-19 vaccinations. My own club, the Oradell/Emerson Rotary, has assisted in getting seniors who are technologically challenged registered for the vaccine. In some areas, Rotarians are assisting with vaccinations – including planning, logistics, and on-site support.
Of course, Rotarians have been working wherever needed throughout the pandemic. My home club has been holding food drives, manning food pantries, taking over a Meals on Wheels route, organizing blood drives, collecting blankets and coats for the homeless, and most recently making Easter baskets for adolescent psychiatric patients at our county hospital.
These are just some of the things a single club has done; there are thousands of initiatives that Rotarians are involved with – pandemic or not. Whether it is being part of a global project, like eradicating polio, or tackling issues closer to home, Rotary is there. And volunteering – especially when the whole world is hurting like it is now – is one of the best ways I know to combat pandemic fatigue.
You don’t need to feel powerless during this pandemic. Just reach out to a Rotary Club – they will gladly put you to work helping those in need!