Posted by Zoltan Nagy
The ancient Greeks used to say “At the intersection of member engagement and new member recruitment lies service projects.”  OK, maybe the ancient Greeks never uttered those exact words but I’m sure if Plato were running a Rotary club he would agree. 
Over the last month, given the precarious position of our future Giving Budget, you may have noticed that I’ve been very focused on our fundraising projects.  The Flags For Heroes fundraiser is in its final weeks and we still need your support in selling out all the flags.  I’m not going to rehash my message from last week but please don’t sit on the sidelines – sell some flags.   In addition to Flags For Heroes, we have kicked around some ideas that I think will gel into something later in the year for another fundraising project.  And if the pandemic situation doesn’t improve for next spring and Run With Rotary is cancelled again, we will be prepared to do it in some sort of virtual format like other nonprofits have done.
But today I want to focus not on fundraising but pure service projects.  Doing these types of projects benefit us in several ways.  First, it gives a sense of purpose to our Rotary membership.  While it’s nice to get together at our weekly meetings, I really think service projects are where relationships are cemented, and Rotarians feel that sense of accomplishment.  Second, it provides us visibility in the community and is invaluable to new member recruitment.  People want to join an organization that is “doing something” not just holding meetings. 
One such service project on our calendar is Bikes For The World which is tentatively scheduled for 10/24.  One of the obstacles for putting on this project this year is that the organization Bikes For the World would typically send a truck up from Maryland to collect the bikes and drive them back but Maryland is currently on our state quarantine list.  One contingency we can setup to alleviate this issue would be have a temporary storage location for the collected bikes until either they can come up and get them or I can drive them down to MD.  So if anyone has a covered location (does not need to be indoors but something shielded from the elements) please let me know.
I’d like for us to come up with a few more service projects we can do this coming Rotary year.  And, specifically, I’d like for us to come up with an idea or two for projects that can involve the whole club and not just one or two people.   Perhaps, we can have a brainstorming meeting on this topic at a future club meeting where we don’t have a speaker scheduled (speaking of speakers, thanks to Cory Wingerter for his hard work in rebooting the speaker schedule).

So, don your thinking caps yet again and come up with some service project ideas over the next few weeks.  After all, the Rotary motto is “Service Above Self”!

Rotarically Yours,
Zoltan Nagy
Rotary Club of Montgomery/Rocky Hill (NJ)