‘Young People Speak’ about life in Rotary

If you missed Monday’s multi-district panel discussion called “Young People Speak,” an insight into what young people experience in Rotary, you may want to give it a try by clicking on the video above.

The panelists, who were from Upstate New York districts, talked about what attracted them to Rotary, what turned them off about Rotary, and what Rotary clubs can do to connect with youths — provide guidance (loosely!), have a strong orientation program, be welcoming, encourage teamwork, be flexible, and be people of action.

Give it a try. You may find the video enlightening and helpful as we try to refresh our club membership.

Have you seen our new polio history video?

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Dr. Martha Lepow, circa 1950s

The video “Making Polio History: A Pioneer’s Story” made its debut at the recent District 7190 Conference in Lake George. To help disseminate the word about this important development in educating all Rotarians and the public in general about this insidious disease that has long been a target of Rotary funding and action around the world, we are trying to make the video available to as many people as possible.

This is the story of the disease and the battle against it, as seen through the eyes of a local pediatrician who was among the early anti-polio researchers — Dr. Martha Lepow, seen above in the 1950s.

If you have not yet seen the video, we urge you to watch it now on the new page that has just been added to our club website (click here to visit it). Then, share it with others via Facebook, Twitter, email or any other method you choose.

The video was created through a cooperative effort of the Southern Rensselaer County Rotary Club, Rotary District 7190, CASDA: The Capital Area School Development Association, and the UAlbany School of Public Health.


The real story of the day that preempts us next week

Since we won’t be meeting for Thursday evening Rotary dinner again until next month, it may be interesting to take a fresh look at what will preempt us next week. It’s the 153rd annual Thanksgiving Day.

Yes, 153rd. Not the 396th as some people think. True, the Pilgrims and the indigenous Wampanoags did share an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged as the first such fete in the New World although there is no record extant that they ever gave it a title. And, they held a similar three-day party the following year, but it kind of dissipated as time went on.

And, yes, some sorts of harvest-period celebration have been commonplace in most parts of then world from time immemorial, so it is not surprising that the practice endured in one form or another. In the early years of our nation, presidents George Washington and John Adams issued proclamations about national days of thanks, but they were not necessarily regarded as national holidays and the practice fizzled. In 1817, New York State became the first of several U.S. states to officially adopt an annual Thanksgiving holiday, although each celebrated it on a different day.Read More »

Our newest page (yes, another) may be of help

Screen shot 2016-06-14 at 3.34.47 PMAnyone who has been a Rotarian for even a short time probably has been asked more than once, “What IS Rotary?”

Most people have at least heard of the organization, or perhaps seen the familiar Rotary emblem on a signpost at the entrance to a town, or even noticed something in a local newspaper or on TV about a Rotary project benefiting the community.

While we can try explaining Rotary to them, you’ve probably found its reach is so broad and its activities so varied that providing a full description is quite a chore in a simple conversation.

Because we live in such a technological and visual time, Rotary International and some of its individual districts and clubs continuously create videos explaining Rotary from a variety of viewpoints.

We have, from time to time, posted such videos here for you to share with friends, families, colleagues, and anyone curious about what we do. Now, however, we’ve put together a formal collection of such videos that went live today, a collection we’ll expand and update from time to time.

Just click here to take a look at our starter collection. When someone asks about Rotary, you can tell them what you like about it, then point them to SRCrotary.org for the full story about the Southern Rensselaer County club.

NOTE: We particularly recommend the first video, titled “Why Rotary Now?” It speaks to some reasons younger people in business enjoy participating in Rotary despite the pressures of family and work that others often cite as reasons not to join us.