I think that Rotary has a big problem with marketing.

And by that I mean many of us, as Rotarians, have a big problem with how we tell our stories. I came to this realisation whilst visiting yours and others Rotary Clubs. Now this is not the fault of Rotarians per se, for they hear (at big Rotary activities) and then repeat comments like: "the Rotary Foundation needs your support it is our charity". And November is the month where we focus on the "Foundation".

The problem here is that the image conjured up in the mind of the non-Rotarian is of a charity to help struggling Rotarians - What a good idea, I here you thinking! Now these same people probably do not think that the Salvation Army appeal is to support the Army, nor that the Cancer Council supports the Council, or the Fred Hollows foundation supports ... and so on.
Let's recognise that we are in the business of promoting PEACE through peace scholars, fighting DISEASE, providing clean WATER, supporting EDUCATION, saving MOTHERS AND CHILDREN, and growing local COMMUNITIES AND ECONOMIES ... AND we do it through the Rotary Foundation!
OK having got that off my chest, ...
I have been asking Clubs to talk about - let's fight disease and END POLIO by donating to the Foundation. Let's talk about the great works to be done and recognise it can be achieved through the Rotary Foundation. [At the end of the Conversation I have a suggestion, just in time for the traditional end of year giving season.]
And this year we celebrate the first 100 years of her (the Rotary Foundation's) life. And to put this long life into perspective Past District Governor and District Foundation Chair/Director, David Kennedy has written:
"The Foundation is the $1 billion charitable arm of Rotary International. To mark the centennial, Rotary aims to raise $300 million by July 2017 for its campaign to eradicate polio and for service in communities around the world.
Established in 1917 with a donation of $26.50. The Rotary Foundation is dedicated to advancing world understanding, goodwill, and peace. Through grants and other resources, Rotary members develop sustainable projects that promote peace, fight disease, provide clean water, support education, save mothers and children, and grow local economies. You should look at this great summary video
As Ann Dib mentioned to your Club when she and DG Michael visited recently, Rotary’s top priority is the global eradication of polio. Rotary launched its polio immunization program, PolioPlus, in 1985 and in 1988 became a leading partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative along with the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and more recently, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Rotary has contributed more than $1.5 billion and countless volunteer hours to eradicate polio. Through 2018, every dollar Rotary commits to polio eradication will be matched 2-to-1 by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, up to $35 million a year. Since the initiative began, the incidence of polio has plummeted by more than 99.9 percent, from about 350,000 cases a year to only 26 confirmed cases so far this year."
The Rotary Foundation Director, David and I encourage you and your Club to strongly consider making your donations during the Foundation month of November.Our goals for the 2016/17 year is to see each Club achieve a giving of at least $770 together with having all Club member as members of our Centurian Club – why not ensure that your Club helps us to reach that goal and allow the Foundation to continue during good in the world.
Now that Gift Giving suggestion.

How often do you hear people say, I don't need anything, and yet you know that you want to give, to recognise their special place in your life and in your heart?

Well here is Rotary's answer to the Oxfam Goat!

The Foundation Gift Cards - they come in various sized packets and for various values - you can download the order form and details on our D9700 web site home page, or here

And the cards relate to each area of focus - Peace, disease prevention, economic and community development, maternal and child health, water and sanitation, and education and literacy