Supporting the environment has been added as Rotary’s seventh Area of Focus. A task force under the leadership of PRIP Ian Riseley worked on the policies to handle environmental projects in Rotary’s sanctioning of grants. On June 26, the closing day of the RI virtual convention, the decision was announced and within eight hours over 2,000 Rotarians had liked and shared RI’s announcement on Facebook. TRF will accept grant application for environment-related projects from July 1, 2021.
Meanwhile, greening initiatives are gaining momentum as Rotarians are planting trees across the country.
Creating a distinct area of focus to support the environment will give Rotary members more ideas to nurture planet Earth and address ways to increase green cover, rejuvenate waterbodies, conserve energy and water resources, check pollution and shun plastic use, says DG M Ranganath Bhat, RID 3181. The district, with its 82 Rotary clubs, aims to plant five lakh saplings during the year.
RC Coimbatore Cosmopolitan, RID 3201, has struck a twinning partnership with RC Fon du-lac Morning, RID 6270, USA. The club members have planted saplings of fruit-bearing trees, naming them after members of the partner club. “We have appointed a horticulturist to nurture the plants. When they yield fruits after two years, we will give them to an orphanage in the locality,” says Project Coordinator Srinivasan Joshi.
In RID 3240, DG Subhasish Chatterjee had called for all the 3,100 Rotarians across 92 clubs to plant at least one sapling each across three days starting July 17. The project — Shyamalima — however surpassed the target of 3,240 saplings with 3,638 saplings planted. “Due to the lockdown restrictions, club members planted saplings in their gardens, terraces or balconies,” says Chatterjee.
RC Jodhpur Padmini, an all-women’s club of RID 3053, made the pavements and medians green by planting saplings. “We have also put up tree guards to safeguard plants,” says Club President Rajshree Chowdary.
RID 3060 has announced a target of planting 200,000 saplings in July and the Rotarians are actively pursuing the goal. RC Rajpipla has planted 82,500 saplings and is confident of finishing with 100,000 by the month-end.
Rotary Bangalore Southwest, RID 3190, spread the message of greening endeavour through a 130-km bike rally even as they planted saplings on vacant areas along the way.
“Would you like to breathe fresh /free oxygen, provided by mother nature or paid oxygen from oxygen cylinders? The choice is yours!!” reads an FB post of RC Mumbai Versova, RID 3141, as it announces a mass tree plantation endeavour through seed bombing on Aug 15. The district had planted 20,000 saplings of fruit-bearing trees recently and plans to scatter 250,000 seedballs of native trees across the district. The Rotaractors are attempting an entry into the Guinness Book of World Records by planning to prepare 20,000 seed balls in a day.