Posted by Xavier Toson
Greetings Rotarians,
Welcome to October! This month we celebrate Economic and Community Development. At this time, our local communities are faced with substantial economic loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses are closing left and right as entrepreneurs fight to keep their doors open.
As a business owner myself, I, too, have experienced loss and significant disruptions to “normal” operations. As I visit around the district, it has become clear that we are up for a great challenge. However, this is a challenge I know we will all overcome and meet with great strength.
As we set our intentions on this month’s theme, I want to encourage each club to find ways to support local businesses, nonprofit leaders, those who are unemployed, and their families. I’ve heard great stories from the Rotary Club of Boerne and their “Neighbors Helping Neighbors Boerne Strong” campaign. This incredible fundraising campaign is helping to match the city of Boerne’s funding, dollar for dollar! The last time I check, the club had raised $30,000 in funding to support the endeavor! Now that’s awesome and a great example of what we can do when we come together.
I imagine many other clubs in our district doing similar work, and I want to thank each of you. If your club has yet to jump in on the action, now’s the perfect time to do so. Lack of funds to do so? There are other ways to support. Perhaps you know of a job opening and can facilitate hiring a local community member or Rotarian? Or, you can barter a few service hours in exchange for training certificates? The opportunities are truly endless if we get a little creative.
Throughout our district and Rotary International, our members promote economic and community development and reduce poverty in underserved communities through training, well-paying jobs, and access to financial management institutions. Projects range from providing people with equipment to vocational training. Our members work to strengthen local entrepreneurs and community leaders, particularly women, in impoverished communities.
During this season of great challenge, let’s find new and innovative ways to support not only our communities but our members. Stay tuned as we work on a creative way to support and connect the dots within our district. If you would like to share a story of how your club will or has met challenges and provided a solution for your local community or member, please join us at our next District Town Hall event on October 8th with San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg. Click here to register!