When we think about life, and the roles we play in our human theater of existence, we often come across a singular, timeless question: What legacy do we want to leave behind?
The death of my twin brother Bob brought my attention to what he had done for others - how he touched lives and shaped destinies. A few weeks prior to his death, Bob received a video assembled by a large number of his former associates at Hotel Information Systems, the company he had founded. Each segment shared how Bob had given that person an opportunity to grow and achieve their goals and dreams.
Indeed, our legacy is the sum of all our individual tales of impact and transformation that echo in the hearts of those we leave behind. But the beautiful thing about legacy is that it's not a posthumous concept. It's being written every day, with every act, with every interaction. In essence, it's our personal "brand."
Being a member of Rotary is one of the ways we can actively contribute to building our own legacy of service and impact. Rotary's motto of "Service Above Self" embodies the principles of making a difference, empowering others, dreaming big and starting small, and thinking in terms of teams, not clubs. In essence, we're building our legacies one project at a time.
Service Above Self: Empowering Others
By joining a Rotary club, we commit to being part of a global network of volunteers who are dedicated to tackling the world's most pressing humanitarian challenges. We get the opportunity to work on projects that uplift our local communities, empowering them with better education, healthcare, sanitation, and more.
Dream Big, Start Small: Global and Local Impact
Rotary encourages us to dream big – even as big as eradicating Polio worldwide, a goal Rotary International is close to achieving. Yet, we also emphasize starting small and making a difference at our local level. We can contribute to a wide range of initiatives, from local literacy programs, food drives and community clean-ups to global projects focused on peace-building and disease prevention. Each is a step towards realizing a bigger vision, contributing to a legacy that transcends borders.
Think Teams, Not clubs: The Power of Collective Action
Despite being called a 'club,' Rotary emphasizes the power of teamwork and collective action. We bring together diverse individuals who are passionate about service and change. Working together, our teams of dedicated individuals accomplish far more than any one person could alone. We tackle ambitious projects, learn from one another, and, in the process, form a community committed to positive change.
Being part of a Rotary club aligns perfectly with the quest to leave a lasting, positive legacy. It offers countless opportunities for service, growth, and impact, all while fostering connections with friends who are equally committed to making a difference. The legacy we build through Rotary is one that ripples out, touching countless lives and contributing to a better, more compassionate world.