domingo, 6 de setembro de 2009


Dear Fellow Team Members, particularly you zone coordinators:This week’s topic is one of the most exciting items on the agenda of our 60 person leadership team. The topic is «International Service literacy projects»

FIRST, please notice that International Service is one of Rotary’s Four Avenues of Service. RI’s new Strategic Plan asks all clubs and districts to emphasize all four avenues of service. Literacy is a great area for a club international service project. Be sure to periodically remind your districts of these 4 Avenues of Service perspective.

SECOND, be aware of the RI board’s current Reach Out to Africa campaign. Literacy projects are one way a club can do its part to support this campaign. The RI Literacy Resource Group is a partner in this effort. Each zone coordinator should periodically encourage the districts and clubs in the zone to participate in a literacy project which involves Africa.

THIRD, be aware of our RI Literacy Resource Group’s goal of promoting the use of Project Link. Each zone coordinator should encourage the districts to post requests for assistance on Project Link and should encourage districts to post their success stories on Project Link. Do it for them if necessary.

FOURTH, be aware of our RI Literacy Resource Group’s plan to reach out to clubs which cannot do an international literacy project of their own. How do we plan to reach out? By making it easy for them to make a small monetary contribution to some other club or district’s plan. Find such projects and make your districts aware of them.

FOR EXAMPLE, Rotary clubs in the USA and South Africa currently operate a successful book collection and distribution program called Rotary Books for the World. Our literacy resource group will invite clubs throughout North America and South Africa to make cash contributions to that project. Details will follow from your area coordinators and you can then make your districts aware of this, if appropriate.

FIFTH, back to project link. The area coordinators and I are asking each zone coordinator to review Project Link at least once a month…And to identify projects found on PROJECT LINK which relate to the coordinator’s zone ….And to try to find one or more projects which the zone coordinator feels confidant in supporting and promoting…And to communicate with the area coordinator saying that this is a project worth publicizing to potential donor clubs in other zones. The area coordinator will do the rest. Of course, you know that Project Link is located at

FOR EXAMPLE, yesterday’s Project Link listed an adult literacy project in South Africa which is looking for a foreign partner (Project number W0 5410). The zone coordinator for South Africa, PDG Chris Pretorius, might conclude that this is a worthy project. He would contact Africa Area Coordinator Doug Kent with that information and encourage Doug to ask other area coordinators to make this opportunity known to the clubs in their area (by asking the zone coordinators to contact the district coordinators and DGs who should pass the information down to the clubs).

SIXTH, our literacy resource group will ask the general coordinator of the Water Resource Group (Charlie Clemmons) and of the Health and Hunger Group (Heather Yarker) to identify specific international projects which combine literacy with water, health and hunger. The projects they will identify will be ones which our group can then promote to the clubs and districts. Your area coordinators will keep you informed of these opportunities as PDG Charlie and PDG Heather tell us about them.

SEVENTH, if any of you zone coordinators are involved with a literacy project which could use small cash contributions from numerous clubs in another country, I encourage you to set up a mechanism whereby cash can be contributed and contributors informed of the progress of the project.

FOR EXAMPLE, Zone 26 coordinator, Helene Kalfuss, is involved with a literacy,-health, hunger, and water project in a village in Africa. Her district has set up a fund which receives small contributions from many different clubs. And her district has arranged to provide periodic progress reports to the clubs which make contributions of any amount.

Last year the club where I make up started the year with grand ambitions for a large international literacy project. When it became clear that was not going to happen the club decided that it HAD TO DO SOMETHING in the international area of service and to support RI’s Reach Out to Africa campaign... So the club found Helene’s project and Charlie Clemmons’ book shipping project and donated $100 to each. Those were small contributions, to be sure. However, they turned the club into a participant in the world-wide effort to stamp out illiteracy instead of a by-stander. It is my impression that a majority of the world’s Rotary clubs are still by-standers. Let’s help our districts turn those by-standers into contributors.

IN REVIEW, our group encourages all clubs to do at least one international literacy project. Our role is to create awareness, encourage action and facilitate action. Our slogan might be EVERY CLUB EVERY YEAR.
The Future of Rotary is in Your Hands!

Richard Hattwick
(Literacy Groups General Coordinator)

Photo: Glenn Estess Sr, Örsçelik Balkan, Henrique Pinto and Turgut Gökyigit, Lisbon RI Institute, 2007

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