We are two months into the Rotary Year and so far, it has been far from status quo.  We are in the midst of a pandemic that has brought our life and economy, as we know it, to it’s knees.  And to top it off, we had a hurricane sweep through the southern part of our District and another major one rip through the Rotary Districts just to our north.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to those who have been affected by these events.  As Rotarians, our natural instinct is to reach out to those in need and Lend A Helping Hand.  But how can we do that and still keep everyone safe from the pandemic?  I will be reaching out to my fellow District Governor classmates in these areas and offer our assistance.  I will keep everyone abreast of their needs.
September is “Basis Education and Literacy Month”.  According to Rotary International, “Our goal is to strengthen the capacity of communities to support basic education and literacy, reduce gender disparity in education, and increase adult literacy.  We support education for all children and literacy for children & adults”.  More than 775 million people over the age of 15 are illiterate.  That’s 17% of the world’s population.  This is an alarming statistic and one that Rotarians must not take lightly.  I encourage clubs in the District to come up with impactful projects during the month of September that address Basic Education and Literacy.  Let’ create awareness and take action. 
Learning is a lifelong, ongoing activity.  It energizes us to gain knowledge and to share it.  Knowledge is power.  Every Rotarian has the ability and opportunity to share knowledge.  In our modern world, none of that knowledge can be shared without a literate audience.  Basic Education and Literacy also saves lives.  Understanding warning signs, directions and calculations all require a rudimentary ability to interpret words and numbers.
I have now met “virtually” with nearly half of the clubs in the District.  As I continue with my “virtual club visits”, I look forward to hearing the great stories that each has to share.  We are ROTARIANS, PEOPLE OF ACTION.  So let’s all continue with our efforts to go out into your communities and LEND A HELPING HAND!!