It seems like just yesterday when we were “this close” to eradicating polio. Today, we are overwhelmed by a virus that mutates rapidly, respects no geographies, and spares no one. All of us have had to deal with the loss of loved ones and close friends. Even as I write this, there are people in some areas who are in need of oxygen and critical care and in desperate search for hospital beds.
Novelist Shannon Alder said, “One of the most important things you can do on this Earth is to let people know they are not alone.” In these times of a major humanitarian crisis, we must reach out and offer whatever help and succour we can provide to those in dire need. Often, assistance can be information regarding availability of hospital beds, oxygen concentrators, critical care, medicines, etc. “When someone is going through a storm, your silent presence is more powerful than a million empty words.”
In this hour of need our Rotary Foundation and Rotarians all over India have pooled resources to provide assistance to all sections of the community.
As M S Dhoni says, “You learn a lot more when you are going through a rough period compared to the good times when everything goes your way.” Now more than ever before, we must be there for others — not just for our near and dear ones but for mankind as a whole. As RI President Elect Shekhar Mehta so aptly says — “Serve to change lives” — and it is through Rotary and TRF that we continue to serve, change lives and do good, not just in India, but also in the world.
This pandemic has brought home to us the truth in Alexander Pope’s declaration: “No man is an island; every man’s death diminishes me.”
Every donation to The Rotary Foundation will be used to make a difference to those in need and thereby do good in the world. So please open your hearts and purse strings and give generously.
Gulam A Vahanvaty
Trustee, The Rotary Foundation