Posted on Mar 24, 2020
For many of us, our Rotary family is an important part of our lives. These friendships connect us to our communities and the world and provide avenues of soul-enriching service. All over the Caribbean...all over the world, we currently find ourselves in unprecedented times that test our ability to stay connected. None of us could have foreseen these extraordinary circumstances brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, caused by the novel coronavirus. Rotary clubs everywhere are wrestling with the question, How do we maintain membership engagement during the pandemic? This unique situation requires an unusual amount of adaptability, creativity and innovation from both clubs and Rotarians. Most, if not all, clubs in District 7030 (and around the world) have canceled in-person meetings, following the advice of the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as, local and regional heath authorities, to maintain and emphasize the need for social distancing. But that does not mean we have to give up on regular fellowship opportunities. Several of our clubs have already met this week virtually. Read more to find out some ways to engage members during these extraordinary times. Remember: Nothing beats the personal touch!


Most clubs should start holding virtual meetings. District 7030 and many of its clubs currently use online video conferencing/meeting platforms (such as Google Hangouts, Skype, GoTo Meeting, Zoom, WebEx, Adobe Connect and many others) to do this. Any club can afford an account on such platforms as meetings under a certain time (e.g. 40 minutes) and with a limited number of participants (e.g. 100 with some platforms) are FREE. Rotary leaders around the world are encouraging every club to appoint a Virtual Meeting Coordinator – someone with good technical skills, who can be enthused about virtual meetings and have a desire to help members of the club become proficient at it. Some further adantages and tips on virtual meetings include:
  • You can also get discounts on more expansive paid services from some platforms using Rotary Global Rewards or other corporate programs to which some members of your club may belong
  • You can invite speakers to participate the same as if they were attending a regular meeting
  • E-meeting/conferencing platforms typically allow PowerPoint presentations and videos to be live shared. Plus, a club member can even operate the PowerPoint slides for the speaker
  • Some clubs even invite guests to their e-meetings
  • One unique idea is to invite some past club members to join your e-meeting and maybe even grow your club membership doing such


  • Rotary International webpage on COVID-19 has the latest information from the CDC, the WHO, and many more credible sources of advice and information on how to treat with the pandemic, as well as, what Rotary International's responses are with each new round of information and updates on the global situation so as to ensure the safest and most appropriate actions are taken by and for its members and the communities they serve |


Look for opportunities to provide service remotely.  Take a look at this new questionnaire asking for needs and which will begin connecting needs with clubs very soon. Your club can also contact several other community service and charitable organizations and find out what help they need. Some are continuing to provide services and assistance to the elderly, the hungry and the sick and can always use the help of Rotarians in providing or sourcing needed resources.


Some clubs are also having virtual social events. This takes more creativity. But Rotarians have plenty of that! Check out how to try Watch Parties on Facebook or Live Streams on Youtube for more ideas.


Club officers can call each member individually, perhaps every two weeks. Get an update from them on their health and status and that of their family. See if any member is in need of assistance. Such assistance may not be due to health concerns, but, due to other related effects of the actions necessary to minimize the spread of COVID-19 such as closures of businesses. Tell members personally about virtual meetings and other opportunities to connect.


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