Posted by Mary Lou Harrison, District 7070 Governor , 2018-19

April showers bring May flowers!

At least that's what the members of the Rotary Club of Ajax are hoping. Last year, the club teamed up with the Town of Ajax to plant 4,500 purple crocus bulbs in the centre median of Harwood Avenue. Purple was chosen because this is the colour used to mark the fingers of children who have received the polio vaccine. Community members were encouraged to participate in PP4P - Project Purple for Polio by making an End Polio Now donation. What a great way to spring into action!

How are you springing into action in Rotary? Here are some fresh ideas!

First, if you're looking for inspiration, be sure to scan through this newsletter. There are lots of opportunities for action in its digital pages. A huge shout out to Editor Dave Andrews for pulling this resource together each month! 

Some other ideas:

Put on your favourite Rotary gear, a great big smile, and go for a walk! We are the Rotary brand. When people see us doing things in the community, they'll want to join in. Why not take a walk around your community instead of having a club meeting?  Invite potential members to come with you. What do you see now that the snow has retreated? What needs doing? 
And, on Saturday, April 27th, in both Belleville and Toronto, you can help end the stigma of HIV & AIDS by participating in the 2019 Rotary AIDS Walks. A note here that the residual beneficiary of the walk has changed from Dignitas International to Latinos Positivos. You can learn more about this volunteer-run organization on Sunday April 7th at 3:00 p.m. in an online info session.

Host an easy opportunity for hands-on service and invite people to participate. The Interact Club of Richview Collegiate recently held a Days for Girls workshop to make menstrual hygiene kits that enable girls around the world to go to school, play sports, and truly explore their potential. The Rotary Club of Toronto West sponsored some of the equipment needed to create the kits, and members of both Toronto West and the RC of Etobicoke came out to lend a hand! The energy in the room was high voltage, and many lives were changed by this project. You can see more photos from this fabulous session on the District facebook page. One thing I loved about this project was the number of male students (and Rotarians) happily making the kits.

Learn something new. Meet someone new. Try something new. Spring is a time for all things new and also to be renewed. How about asking what your club members want to learn about and inviting someone to speak about it? Or, what about going as a group to learn or try something new? What about a cooking class, a documentary film screening, axe throwing? (If you go axe throwing, make sure to let me know!)

There are also lots of District opportunities. The 2019 Rotaract/Interact Conference, for example! I learned things at the 2017 conference about food and nutrition that I still use in my daily life. And I guarantee that you have will an opportunity at this family of Rotary gathering to both Be Inspired and to Be The Inspiration. Saturday, May 4, 2019 at York University with a theme of "The Final Frontier: Push Past the Limits." 

Another opportunity is our District Assembly, taking place on Saturday, May 11 at the BMO Institute for Learning. All members of Rotary District 7070 are invited to this annual meet up. Bring your action ideas to share and come ready to learn.

I don't know about you, but I am more than ready for Spring. More than ready for action. Let's get going! 

Yours in Rotary,

Mary Lou

Mary Lou Harrison, District Governor 2018-19