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Rotary News
Virtual reality films bring new dimension to polio fight
At this year’s World Polio Day celebration in Atlanta, Rotary is harnessing the power of virtual reality technology to build empathy and inspire action in our fight to eradicate polio. Rotary, with support from the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, produced a virtual reality film that tells the story of Alokita, a young adult who suffered paralysis from polio as a child growing up in India, which has been polio-free since 2011. “When you open your eyes and see a different environment around you, you relate to the subject on a visceral, personal level,” says Vincent Vernet, direct of digital and...
Rotary Day at UN highlights role of business in building a better world
From the United Nations’ earliest days in the aftermath of World War II, the organization’s humanitarian mission has always dovetailed with Rotary’s efforts to administer aid and build peace. This year’s Rotary Day at the United Nations, 12 November, will highlight the role businesses can play in that collaboration as we work toward a more just and equitable world. The theme of this year’s gathering at UN headquarters in New York City, “Responsible Business, Resilient Societies,” recognizes Rotary’s role at the intersection of commerce and cause. As leaders in their professions and...
ShelterBox prepares for Mosul refugees
Today marked the start of the battle to take control of Mosul back from the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS. The city is the group's last major stronghold in Iraq. But humanitarian aid agencies have known about the military offensive, giving them an unusual opportunity to prepare for the crisis. "It is rare for the world to get early warning of a vast human catastrophe," says Chris Warham, chief executive of ShelterBox. "The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees issued a paper in July saying this would likely be the biggest humanitarian crisis of the year — and we better get...
Skydivers raise thousands for polio eradication
The first time Noel Jackson jumped out of a plane at 14,000 feet, it had nothing to do with raising money for polio eradication. The Michigan dentist had received a gift certificate to go skydiving from his staff because they knew he was into adventure. “It is definitely a defining moment,” says Jackson, a member of the Rotary Club of Trenton, Michigan, USA, of that first jump, done in tandem strapped to a professional skydiver. “The rush of the free fall is beyond anything I have ever experienced before. Just the speed and acceleration is unbelievable. You don’t even have time to figure out...
Rotary and ShelterBox on the ground in Haiti
Even as parts of Haiti were still recovering from a catastrophic 2010 earthquake, Hurricane Matthew tore through the impoverished island country 4 October, leaving hundreds dead and many more homeless. The Category 4 storm affected an estimated 330,000 people in Haiti, including 6,400 who were moved to temporary shelters. Extensive damage to main bridges and other transportation networks have left some areas cut off and vulnerable. Torrential rains have resulted in flooding and landslides. And contaminated water supplies threaten to lead to a surge in cholera cases and other waterborne...
Watch our polio partnership come alive at World Polio Day
On 24 October, World Polio Day, Rotary will bring together partners from the Global Polio Eradication Initiative for an update on our fight to end polio. As host and moderator of the event, our organization plays a key role in amplifying one of the most important public health concerns in modern history. When we first took it up as an organizational cause over three decades ago, polio affected 350,000 children every year, mostly in lower-income countries where poor sanitation and limited access to clean water facilitate the spread of the virus. Our collaboration with the World Health...
eBay Live Auctions that benefit Rotary
Each month, eBay, the world’s largest auction website, selects a set of upcoming Live Auction events and donates a portion of all sales proceeds to Rotary. Only U.S. auction sales are eligible. See the schedule of October auctions.
Nigeria’s top health official visits Rotary to discuss country’s response to polio outbreak
Nigeria’s health minister, Isaac Adewole, said on Friday that his government is determined to rid the country of polio again. New cases recently landed Nigeria back on the list of countries where the disease is endemic. Adewole met with Rotary leaders at Rotary International World Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois, USA, to discuss Nigeria’s recent efforts to stem the outbreak. All three of the country’s cases were detected in the northern state of Borno, which was under the control of Boko Haram militants until recently. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the virus has been...
Germ declares Owori president-nominee
On 1 October, RI President John F. Germ declared Samuel F. Owori Rotary International's president-nominee. The Nominating Committee for President selected Owori, a member of the Rotary Club of Kampala, Uganda, in August. He will be elected at the 2017 RI Convention in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, and will become president on 1 July 2018. Read more about Owori
Nigeria reclassified as polio endemic
Nigeria reported three cases of wild poliovirus in the northeastern state of Borno in August of this year. Following the World Health Organization's confirmation of these cases, the country returned to the list of polio-endemic countries. The other polio-endemic countries are Afghanistan and Pakistan. These are the first cases detected in the country since July 2014, and while this news is disappointing for all Rotary members, we are confident that Nigeria can defeat polio. Rotary provided $500,000 to assist immediately with the outbreak response, and an emergency response plan has been put...
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Ignite the Potential in Youth

We meet most Thursdays 7:30 AM at the historic Montgomery's Inn, 4709 Dundas St West, (416) 352-5626,
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On World Polio Day, October 24th, show your support.  Let's make polio a thing of the past.

Your home is your castle, but when you decide to renovate it, you need to do your homework! So says Paul Napolitano, owner of Royal Home Improvements. In his address to Rotary Toronto West members on September 22nd, he gave us insight into today’s trends and what prospective clients should consider before signing a contract.
Joe Roberts, The Skid Row CEO, will be revving up Rotary at the 7070 District Conference on Sunday October 22, 2016.

Rotary Toronto West held their golf tournament On September 15th at the beautiful and challenging Caledon Country Club. It was a GREAT DAY!
John Cochrane, founder of Cochrane Automotive in Etobicoke and long time club member, gave us a glimpse into the “connected car” of the future on August 18th. And the message was – it’s happening as we speak, and we’d better get ready for it!
Homelessness and joblessness did not keep Kristoff from following his dream.
Kristoff came to the MicroSkills Rotary Youth Centre as a newcomer from Jamaica. His passion for food and cooking was immediately clear in his eagerness to volunteer for the afterschool program snack preparation. In 2012, Kris enrolled in the Microskills Pre-Cook Apprenticeship Program delivered in partnership with Humber College. After completing the program, Kris faced new challenges such as difficulties finding and retaining employment. He was also homeless for a time...
RTW members and Rotaractors turned out to welcome people to Rotary at Taste of the Kingsway on Saturday, September 10th.
As always, it is fun to get out in public to spread the word about Rotary and it’s fulfilling to see the spark of interest in the faces of many of the people approached.
Sarah Ali, along with five other caring, determined, passionate mothers got together under the banner of the Somali Parents Liaison Coalition to create a summer camp for thirty vulnerable children that brought much joy, safety and opportunity to both parents and children. Sarah spoke to Rotary September 1st, about the great work that’s been done.
We are 99.9 percent of the way toward ending polio - horrible disease which crippled thousands of once active, healthy children. As of early June, there were only 16 cases of wild poliovirus in the world, and many think this could be the year we see the last naturally occurring case of polio.
Planning a project and need help? Rotarian experts offer advice to other members through Rotary’s action groups and the Foundation’s cadre system.
Connect with some of the most ordinary-extraordinary people like:
Lisa McCoy from Rotary Club of Gravenhurst, Ontario - that provides bicycles to Cambodian children so they can get to school. To be continued ...
Together, Rotarians are attacking poverty, disease, and lack of education, and bringing peace through grant-funded projects in our areas of focus. What began as modest projects that helped relatively few people, about 100 years ago, gradually expanded, and today more than $3 billion has been spent on programs and projects transforming millions of lives around the globe.

In 1905, a lonely Paul Harris was looking for camaraderie and a way to build a professional network. Today, that network is 1.2 million members strong who are connected to other leaders in their own communities and around the world.
Through the Global Rewards program, Rotary and Rotaract members can take advantage of discounts on car rentals, hotels, dining, entertainment, and a wide variety of other products. (Marriott,, Costco, and Ikea are just a few of the businesses that participate). Many members also offer discounts from their own businesses. Use it as a way to save money on a club project or to support a member-owned business. Products and services are added every week; find out what’s new at
Rotary clubs have many options for attracting members and keeping them involved. In April 2016, representatives from Rotary districts around the world met and revised Rotary’s policies that give clubs greater flexibility in when, where, and how they meet and the types of membership they offer.
Because our work to support peace and end conflict is making the world a better place – one person at a time. Through service projects, fellowships, and other Rotary-sponsored campaigns, members train adults and young leaders to prevent and mediate conflict, and aid refugees who have fled dangerous areas.

and help spread peace around the world.
to promote peace.
Did you know? The Rotary Foundation offers a limited number of scholarships for water and sanitation professionals to study at UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education in the Netherlands. Rotarians interview applicants who have been admitted to the institute and recommend scholarship candidates. Learn more at
Rotary club meetings offer the type of genuine social connection that triggers our bodies to release oxytocin, the so-called happiness hormone, and reduce levels of cytokines, pro-inflammatory proteins that signal the immune system to work harder and are often associated with poor health and depression.
Rotaract brings together people ages 18 to 30 in universities and communities worldwide to organize service activities, develop leadership and professional skills, and have fun. If you’ve ever been to a Rotaract meeting or volunteered at RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards), you’ve already glimpsed one of the most vibrant parts of Rotary. Our programs for the 20-something and younger set are designed to mentor young leaders and bring generations together.
Steve Rutledge, a Rotarian who knows how to make a difference visited us this month to give us an update on the work of bringing clean water to villages in Laos. One of Rotary Foundation’s Areas of Focus is Providing Clean Water and Steve works energetically towards this goal.
Frustrated with the gaps and inequities for assessments and treatment programs available for low to middle-income Canadian families dealing with neurobiological disorders, Dr. Maged Kodsi founded Caring for Young Minds (CYM) in 1999.  Rotary Club Toronto West, in line with our vision to “Ignite the potential in youth,” invited Dr. Kodsi to give us an update on the invaluable work CYM is doing.
What really happened on November 22, 1963?  This is a question our member, John Muto, has puzzled over and researched for many years.  He has been in good company, as there have been more than 2000 books written , dozens of television programs and many movies filmed, all filled with theory, conjecture and myth as to why President  John F. Kennedy was assassinated in broad daylight on Elm Street in Dallas, Texas nearly 53 years ago.
Over 20 young students in the Montgomery’s Inn Culinary Arts Project (MICAP) made cookie houses in celebration of graduating from the program on May 25.  The cookie houses were of all different shapes and sizes with colourful designs and gave the kids the opportunity to practice their cooking and artistic skills while having fun and great social interaction.
PACTpaint Do you want to help at-risk kids to better themselves and get gainful employment? Our Rotary club does, by supporting the PACT Urban Peace Program here in Etobicoke. Help for kids in need was the message of David Lockett, a founder of the program who spoke to us on May 26, at a joint meeting of our club and Parkdale-High Park Rotary.
Save the date June 10 -14, 2017 for our 2017 Annual Conference. For more information visit