ImageDear Friends in Rotary:


Should this be a choice or should one be part of the other?


As I was sitting, ready to write this message, it dawned on me that I was the only one in the district doing it. There is one monthly message to the district and one governor and I was it! Then the next question was why take this on?


When you read this, I will probably be doing what I enjoy most about being a Rotarian these days. I will be in a classroom full of Mayan teenagers trying to instill in them some entrepreneurship desires so they can find a way of getting out of poverty. This is what I understand to be 'Service above self'.


I am sure each of you has a favorite Rotary activity which gives you fulfillment and the satisfaction of contributing to society. Something you can say proudly when asked what else you do besides working or playing. Otherwise, why be a Rotarian, right ?


So, why am I a district governor ? Why do you serve on this or that committee in your club? Why are you a member of the board? Why did you volunteer to be president (those who have been know that's a good one!) ? Why do you raise funds selling raffle tickets or asking for donations from merchants ? Why do you contribute to the Rotary Foundation ?


There are others, too: what could be more fun than delivering a food basket, reading to children at the library, holding a holiday party at the local nursing home, or building a deck in a school in a remote corner of the rainforest ?


I think I know part of the answer to why you're a Rotarian -- you could not serve others, be a contributor to society, or be an example to others without your club, your district, your Rotary.


And Rotary would not be what it is for all of us if you didn't take some of the 'dirty' jobs from time to time! Yes, you stepped up when the call went out for volunteers. You responded 'yes' when somebody asked you to take a leadership role or just clean the tables after the picnic for the inner city kids. You are a Rotarian. You are Rotary!


Surely, there are other organizations and groups to serve and contribute but you chose Rotary. How did we get started? The reasons are different for each of us, but we all have something in common: We were invited! Somebody cared enough about us, somebody thought we were made of the right stuff, somebody recognized our nature, and said: "Would you join me for lunch (or breakfast, or whatever!)?"


So the answer to the first question is that one is a part of the other. And the next question: Why not ask somebody to help share the load and enjoy the fun of serving others above self? 


Yours in Rotary Service,


Governor Carlos