WHAT ‘SERVICE ABOVE SELF’ MEANS TO THE ROTARY CLUB OF SALEM
Mahatma Gandhi once said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
Focusing on Rotary’s Service Above Self ideal, members of The Rotary Club of Salem have truly found themselves over the past year through donations to non-profits as well as direct service projects.
The Club focuses on two major fundraising events each year, the ODAC Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournament and Olde Salem Days. These events, as well as a few others throughout the year, enabled the Club to distribute $16,000 to local and international service, support, and non-profit organizations.
Community Grant recipients for Rotary year 2021 – 2022 included:
Adult Care Center
Carilion Clinic Foundation
Challenger Little League
Family Promise of Greater Roanoke
Feeding Southwest Virginia
Good Samaritan Hospice
Jill’s Buddy Camp
Knights of Columbus
National Giving Alliance
Rescue Mission of Roanoke
Roanoke Area Ministry
Roanoke Valley Greenway Commission
Ryan’s Case for Smiles
St. Vincent’s Home
Salem Area Ecumenical Ministries
Salem High School Forensics and Debate Team
Salem Museum and Historical Society
Salem/Roanoke County Food Pantry
In addition to time spent on fundraisers, Club members volunteer and the Club donates funds for numerous direct service projects. Some of those were Christmas for Kids, Clean Valley Days, Dictionaries for Kids, Salem High School Interact Club, International Youth Exchange, Salem Food Pantry and Winter Coat Drives, as well as, Thanksgiving and Christmas Dinner Outreach. Also, through the Dan Wooldridge Scholarship, James Elliott Scholarship and Jostens Trophy award the Club recognizes student-athletes exemplifying excellence in the classroom, athletics and community.
Those who receive the greatest benefit are our Club’s members.
Through all of the programs, projects, avenues of service, leadership development opportunities and family events, Club members reported a high level of satisfaction. They felt good about what they had accomplished. They used their skills to improve the community and gain a better understanding of the people they touched. Our Club allowed members to assist others both locally and internationally in a way we as individuals could not have done. Finding ourselves through service invariably motivates us to become even more active in Club projects.