Vocational Service
The Rotary theme for January is Vocational Service. Well, so what? I hear some thinking. In fact I too had to think 'why?' Delving back into my Rotary history I realised that a cornerstone to Rotary's diversity, and perhaps its longevity, is the focus on including in each Rotary Club a diverse range of vocations.
So what? I asked myself. Having a diverse range of vocations certainty broadens the perspective of Club views, capacities, competencies and inspirational desires. But something was missing from this reasoning.
I then it occurred to me that it was the other cornerstone of Rotary, Service. Vocational Service. I wondered how we Rotarians might interpret this 'Service' component. In many clubs Vocational activities include visits to different workplaces - of Rotarians, other businesses and services, manufacturers, and various industries in our local areas (eg mining, education, health, welfare, corrective services, and so on).
Some Clubs have successful Pride of Workmanship programs where local employees are recognised for their customer service or quality of their work. There are special categories supported by some clubs for Police and Emergency Services workers.
Indeed the District has an annual Vocational Excellence Award. I am pleased to report that Awards chair, Murray Paterson, has advised that there is a strong field for the Awards this year. It is great to be able to recognise "a commitment to high ethical standards and a record of outstanding achievement in their chosen vocation which has been to the advancement of that vocation and the nation".
Yes this is all very good, but how does this relate to Vocational Service for Rotarians - where is the 'service' component?
Recently, your Club may have considered its constitution, in which you would have noticed (wink) Article 6 - Five Avenues of Service. The second 'Avenue' for serving as a Rotarian, is Vocational Service, which:
"has the purpose of promoting high ethical standards in businesses and professions, recognizing the worthiness of all dignified occupations, and fostering the ideal of service in the pursuit of all vocations. The role of members includes conducting themselves and their businesses in accordance with Rotary’s principles and lending their vocational skills to club-developed projects in order to address the issues and needs of society."

I think there is another angle we can take in this Avenue of Service. That is the Rotarian providing service back to their vocation through participation on industry committees, representation on local, regional, state and national committees, working with your vocation mentoring juniors, providing your knowledge and support to ensure the vocation's ethics and standards are maintained, and to foster a sense of service within others.
Read on to see how one Rotarian turned his craft into art!
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