While this article was written in July, you’ll read it only in August and one month of this Rotary year would have passed. Notwithstanding, let us continue to celebrate with pride as our very own Shekhar Mehta leads Rotary. His clarion call Serve to Change Lives must act as the catalyst to multiply our commitment to the underprivileged.
The pandemic made life very difficult for the 2020–21 DGs. Yet, they and their TRF leadership teams have done us proud by going the extra mile and surpassing 2019–20’s total contribution. While the final figures are being reconciled, the latest tally for all four zones is $23.5 million, of which India’s contribution is $22.3 million. Both numbers are a new record. This is truly outstanding.
The pride of place goes to D 3141, led by DG Sunnil Mehra, as the No 1 district in the world with a total contribution of $3.5 million; six other Indian districts — 3131, 3232, 3190, 3201, 3060 and 3011 — are in the top 50 worldwide. I congratulate the IPDGs, their TRF teams, our generous donors and all regional coordinators — RRFCs, EMGAs and EPNCs. Take a bow, everyone! Also, the total AF contributions have increased by almost 18 per cent over the previous year which is hugely significant.
On a personal level, 2021–22 will be special: Shekhar Mehta is RI President. And it will be my last year as TRF Trustee. May I humbly request every Rotarian to contribute at least $100 to TRF; not per capita but individually. This will be truly record-breaking and make the 2021–22 goal of $30 million for all four zones easier.
Our Foundation stands for hope for the downtrodden and underprivileged. My fellow Rotarians, do rise to the challenge of meeting our targets so that we continue to do good in the world. To each club president and DG, I say “this is your moment”. You are the leader “who strives valiantly, who errs, comes up short, who spends every effort in a worthy cause, who at best knows the triumph of high achievement and at the worst fails whilst daring, so that their place shall never be amongst timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” It matters not whether you scaled the peak, what matters is that you never gave up trying.
Let’s do our very best as we go forth and serve to change lives.
Gulam A Vahanvaty
Trustee, The Rotary Foundation