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District Information and Communications (DIC) Network

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District Information and Communications (DIC) Network

Message From District Governor Henry Tan For The Month Of September 2018

Thursday, 30 August 2018


The month of September is Basic Education and Literacy Month. Statistics reveal that more than 775 million people over the age of 15 are illiterate. Two-thirds of the world’s illiterate adults are women. The figures are staggering but Rotary is already doing something to overcome the problem of illiteracy and basic education. You can read about this in My Rotary (https://mytrn.rotary.org/en/learning-reference/about-rotary/basic-education-and-literacyand https://www.rotary.org/en/our-causes/supporting-education?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIrPvAq5KF3QIVVg4rCh0RngYXEAAYASAAEgL7ufD_BwE)

However, much remains to be done in many countries. Even in District 3310 we can do more to help those in the rural areas. Literacy and education go hand in hand. All other form of learning will be impossible for an individual who is iliterate. Literacy emcompasses reading, writing, speaking, listening, and looking at things to acquire more knowledge. If an individual does not have any of these skills, there is no way the/she can gain more knowledge. Therefore, literacy is crucial for learning. In fact, literacy can help individuals to get out of poverty, to improve the development of the wider community, to help to lower infant mortaility rates and to help to prevent the spread of many diseases. In countries where the status of women are low, literacy can improve their sense of self-worth, can help them to be economically productive and independent and in so doing help them gain control of their own lives. This will in turn help them to contribute back to societies.

For societies that already have basic education, we can still help in providing specialised education and training to handicapped persons so that they can make a living on their own.

The scope and scale of overcoming basic education and literacy are wide.So when undertaking such projects it is advisable to partner with other Rotary clubs. We can also tap on Global Grant to fund such projects. Do explore collaboration with non-Rotary partners too. As Supporting Education is one of our Area of Focus, I encourage all clubs to explore projects relating to this area of focus.

We can also extend partnership with other clubs to other areas. One of this is fellowship. Although we are members of our respective clubs we are also part of a global family. Hold joint-fellowship with nearby clubs. This will widen our network, get to know more people and to know and understand people better. Better still, invite Rotarians from other clubs to share not only their professional knowledge but also their Rotary experiences. Another area is Rotary information. For this you can invite our very experienced Past District Governors to provide more in-depth information. Such first hand information will be beneficial to both new and old Rotarians. For newer Rotarians I encourage you to also attend seminars organised by the District and courses by the Rotary Leadership Institute.

As you are aware natural disasters in the form of earthquake and flood have recently hit Lombok and Kerala respectively. A number of you have responded with generous donations. I have already activated the District Disaster Relief and Support team to see what is the best way to help.  For Lombok, I am grateful that Rotary Club of Singapore with the help of its member, Dr Yap Lip Kee, is taking the lead to assist the earthquake victims there. As for Kerala, we are working with the District Governors in Kerala and Cochin to see how best we can help. Meanwhile, please continue to donate.

Henry Tan
District Governor RY2018-19