Meeting RI director A S Venkatesh at his office in Chennai during a three-day car rally to promote organ donation has been a “big motivation for our team of four Rotaractors from RID 3203,” recalls DRR S Shreevarshan who led the rallyists under Project Ride 2 Rise a Life. The three-day car rally covered a distance of 1,600km passing through eight RI districts in Tamil Nadu to spread the message among the public and Rotarians.
“RID Venkatesh advised us to take up long-term, sustainable projects and also focus on self-development of Rotaractors in our clubs,” says the DRR. “We briefed him about our campaign to promote organ donation across Tamil Nadu.”
Project Namma Bhavani is working to restore Bhavani River. Around 50 Rotaractors are volunteering and helping in the documentation process of this five-year project.
During the Coimbatore leg of their journey, the four Rotaractors — Sreevarshan, Rtrs R Manikandan, Santhosh Kumar and Sathish Kumar — were honoured at the Yuva festival for youth hosted by RC Coimbatore Texcity. The rallyists also met DGs V R Muthu, RID 3212, and V Selvanathan, RID 2981, in the course of their campaign. The car rally was sponsored by RCs Mettupalayam, Karamadai and DRCC Dr Ismail. “Without their financial support, the project would have been a non-starter,” says Shreevarshan.
Project Namma Bhavani is working to restore Bhavani River, a major source of drinking water in Erode and nearby villages. Around 50 Rotaractors from RAC Vellalar College of Engineering and Technology are doing volunteering work and helping in the documentation of the mega river clean-up being done by a number of Erode clubs led by RC Gobi. “Namma Bhavani has bagged the Best Public Image Award for zone-5 at the RI Convention in Hyderabad, 2022. We still have a long way to go in river restoration as it is a five-year project,” he says.
Members of RAC Providence College are distributing packed food to needy and feeding stray dogs in a monthly project. “We prepare food at our homes and pack it with banana leaves instead of using plastic or silver foil,” says the DRR. A mega awareness rally was staged by RACs Government Arts College, Ooty, and JSS, Ooty, in partnership with two Rotary clubs in Nilgiris to mark International Girl Child Day (Oct 11). “We also conducted a seminar on empowerment of girls after the rally.” To create interest in rocketry, 10 Rotaractors from RAC Tirupur Young Generation visited TISSO orphanage home and “gave a demo with exhibits on aeromodelling to 50 students,” says A Dharanidharan, district Rotaract secretary.
Shreevarshan is confident of “collecting the mandatory dues from our clubs in February-March without any hitch.” There are 74 active clubs with over 840 Rotaractors in RID 3203. He joined RC Pollachi Royalz in December to become a dual member. He turned Paul Harris Fellow after giving $1,000 to TRF in January. Recalling his eight-year journey in Rotaract, the DRR says, “the experience not only improved my personality, but helped me to achieve great results in my business.” A political analyst and trader of chemical products, he is a regular at the Rotary club meetings, but “I will involve in its projects and community initiatives from July,” he adds.