Good health and good thinking are our most precious possessions, good health being the most important. Only if health is good, everything else follows. A sound body keeps not just the mind but all else sound. But we don’t pay attention to our health in our busy lives till we fall sick and then we run to doctors and hospitals. To add to this is the burden of lifestyle diseases, called NCD – Non-Communicable diseases.  India is facing an NCD epidemic responsible for 60 per cent of deaths. Being Indian itself is a risk factor. More importantly, Indians are dying early and prematurely, with the big killer being bad food; rich in calories, high in salt, oil and sugar! An added factor is lack of exercise and a stressed lifestyle.

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Let’s approach
December — Disease Prevention and Treatment month — geared up to take forward our Rotary India initiative of Project Positive Health – Stop NCDs Project.
A three-pronged approach is needed:

  1. Early detection of NCDs – Know your numbers campaign.
  2. Motivating life style changes – Ek Chammach Kum, Char Kadam Aage campaign.
  3. Creating awareness of hazards of NCDs – Launch a social media campaign; create awareness in schools and colleges.

On Sep 29 (World Heart Day) and Nov 14 (World Diabetes Day), Rotarians all over India carried out hundreds of camps, held rallies, street plays, bicycle rallies and workshops reaching out to thousands of citizens by creating awareness and taking action. Well done to all the clubs and Rotarians who were involved in this activity. Well done to all National Committee Members. Their motivation, hard work and coordinated efforts made things happen.

On the treatment front, Rotary districts of Maharashtra signed an MoU with Fairfax India Charitable Foundation (FICF) for setting up dialysis centres by supplying dialysis machines. I firmly believe that the future of Rotary is partnerships which allow us to leverage our strengths and do more impactful, better work. The partnership with FICF is a good example. Rotary clubs can donate a machine for  `4.15 lakhs (75 per cent of the cost, 25 per cent to be matched by FICF) which includes 4-years’ comprehensive maintenance.  Starting as a pilot in Maharashtra, we expect it to roll out in other parts in the coming months. Let us all do our best working towards a healthier society by doing our work, our service with love and compassion as we ensure that Rotary Connects The World.

Dr Bharat Pandya
RI Director, 2019-21

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