Posted by John Ester on Oct 03, 2017
Following his presentation to the Club, District Governor Ed Swart and wife Carol received (and donned) coveted Benzie Sunrise aprons from Club President Steve Mitchell.
A member of the Rotary Club of Holland, Ed began by noting that Rotary has changed since he joined the Holland Club some 33 years ago. Thus the focus of Rotary is no longer on meals or mandatory attendance  at weekly meetings.  Instead, the mind set is service:  Rotary's object is to provide opportunities for service. 
Rotary connections like going to meetings at other clubs and attending District or International events can lead to projects like an educational project in India that Ed described. And through the "Magic of the Match," whereby  money given to the RI Foundation comes back in matching grants, an original sum of $10,000 can become a $60,000 project.
Ed reminded us of some upcoming opportunities for making Rotary connections, including the One Rotary Summit in Roscommon on October 14, where participants will exchange ideas on membership, leadership, public image and involvement in Foundation programs. The next District Conference will be in Holland on May 17-19, followed by the International Conference in Toronto on June 23-28.
Ed concluded by saying that we really are "this close" to wiping out polio, with only 11 cases in the world in 2017.   Rotary is committed to winning this long battle, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has committed another $300 million in matching funds toward this end.