A trailblazer is one who is an innovator, a pathfinder, a pioneer, a person who inspires others in working towards a common, valued goal. In 2020–21 we Rotarians must be trailblazers. Change is the principle of life. It gives us the vision to succeed. Being a trailblazer means adapting to the change and implementing the change in our organisation and in ourself. And that is what Rotary leaders have done in our zones and across the world. The last three months have gone by in a flash. Meetings and more meetings. It has been the season of change and challenge — in the way we have our Rotary meetings and challenges to our membership, project implementation, fellowship activities and our health. But Rotarians have stepped up and confidently adopted the changes with a positive attitude; a can do, will do spirit.

Today we are at a pivotal point in Rotary. Rotary has an increasingly important role to play in the times ahead. As we ‘Grow Rotary’, as we reach out across borders, as we implement meaningful projects we keep discovering a new Rotary — that is changing, adapting and becoming more flexible and focuses on inclusiveness and equitable opportunity for all. But our core values — fellowship, diversity, service, leadership and integrity — remain constant. And our values define who we are and what we do as Rotarians. I am confident that Rotary will emerge stronger, vibrant and more relevant from this crisis.

What is the magic formula of Rotary; I believe we need the vision to see, the vigour to act and the heart to care. We have always had people with vision in Rotary — the innovators. Rotarians by their positive, affirmative action bring the projects to fruition. And the heart to care has existed in every Rotarian. The ability to see, vigorous action and caring heart are the three things needed to invoke the magic that is Rotary. And Covid or no-Covid, the magic of Rotary continues to weave its web in our communities and the world. I compliment the torchbearer governors and their teams for their significant work in 2019–20. And I wish the trailblazer governors all the very best in this new, exciting leadership journey for 2020–21.

Rotary, to me, is two words — hope and opportunity. Hope that the community has from Rotary and the Opportunity that each one of us has to fulfill that hope through meaningful, lasting service. Remember, ‘Happiness is a perfume you cannot pour on others, without getting a few drops on yourself.’ Dare to dream; touch lives and spread happiness.

Be the trailblazers as Rotary Opens Opportunities.

Enjoy Rotary, enjoy yourself.

Dr Bharat Pandya,
RI Director, 2019-21

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