There is no way to peace, peace is the way. A.J. Muste
ROTARY INTERNATIONAL PEACE FOCUS
Promoting PEACE is one of Rotary International’s areas of focus along with Water and Sanitation, Economic Development & Community, Child & Maternal Health, Disease Prevention & Treatment, and Education & Literacy, all of which contribute to peace building.
On the broadest levels, RI is involved with mediating inter-tribal conflict or helping refugees fleeing dangerous areas. Closer to home, peace building includes initiatives and activities to foster peace and wellbeing for Rotary members and for our clubs.
Rotary International sponsors a Peace Fellowship program with training institutes in countries around the world. Peace Fellowship inquiries and applications are handled by our District office.
ROTARY INTERNATIONAL BASICS
Rotary’s Vision Statement:
“TOGETHER we see a world where PEOPLE unite and take action to CREATE lasting CHANGE across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.”
Rotary’s Mission Statement:
“We provide service to others, promote integrity, and advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through our fellowship of business, professional, and community leaders.”
ROTARY CORE VALUES:
Service, Fellowship, Diversity, Integrity and Leadership
Service Above Self
FOUR WAY TEST:
- Is it the TRUTH?
- Is it FAIR to all concerned?
- Will it build GOODWILL and BETTER FRIENDSHIPS?
- Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
ROTARIAN CODE OF CONDUCT:
AS A ROTARIAN, I will ...
- Act with integrity and high ethical standards in my personal and professional life
- Deal fairly with others and treat them and their occupations with respect
- Use my professional skills through Rotary to: mentor young people, help those with special needs, and improve people’s quality of life in my community and in the world
- Avoid behavior that reflects adversely on Rotary or other Rotarians
- Help maintain a harassment-free environment in Rotary meetings, events, and activities, report any suspected harassment and help ensure non-retaliation to those individuals that report harassment.
DIVERSITY/EQUITY/INCLUSION (DEI) STATEMENTS
Over the past few years Rotary International has recognized the need for heightened attention and action toward social justice. The purpose and focus are on building diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) within clubs, such that club membership and leadership reflects the club service area population base. In adopting these statements, RI’s position is that these are overarching human values not political issues.
Diversity/Equity/Inclusion (DEI) (2020)
As a global network that strives to build a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change, Rotary values diversity and celebrates the contributions of people of all backgrounds, regardless of their age, ethnicity, race, color, abilities, religion, socioeconomic status, culture, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
Rotary will cultivate a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture in which people from underrepresented groups have greater opportunities to participate as members and leaders
Diversity of Membership (Manual of Procedure 2019)
Each club shall endeavor to build a well-balanced membership that celebrates diversity. No club, regardless of when it joined RI, may in any way limit membership due to gender, race, color, creed, national origin, or sexual orientation, or impose any membership condition not specifically allowed by the RI constitution or bylaws.
Statement on Racism, Diversity and Peace for Positive Change
At Rotary, we have no tolerance for racism. Promoting respect, celebrating diversity, demanding ethical leadership, and working tirelessly to advance peace are central tenets of our work. We have more work to do to create more just, open and welcoming communities for all people.
We know there are no easy fixes and that challenging conversations and work lie before all of us. Rotary’s strength has long been our ability and commitment to bringing people together. We will tap into that strength now as we stand with those who are working for peace and justice.
Rotary will do our part to listen, learn and take action to ensure that we continue to contribute to making positive change.
ROTARY INTERNATIONAL SUGGESTED ACTIONS TO PROMOTE PEACE FOR CLUBS
- Talk about diversity with your club members and create a member diversity and inclusion action plan using the Diversifying Your Club assessment.
- Invite local diversity, equity, and inclusion experts to speak at club gatherings. Connect with local organizations support diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and work with them on projects or events.
- Encourage and support people from underrepresented groups to take leadership positions in your club and district.
- Encourage club members to take the Building a Diverse Club course in the Learning Center to learn more about diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Create a community advisory board and invite diverse members from the community and from your club to take part to learn what's important to the community and discover ways to work together to take action.
- Designate a board, committee or council that is at the ready to hear of member concerns about disrespectful, discriminatory, biased words or actions targeting them that are in conflict with the RI statements and guiding principles.
DISTRICT 5280 PEACE AND CONFLICT PREVENTION/RESOLUTION
District 5280 has an active Peace and Conflict Prevention/Resolution Committee. Its purpose is to help integrate peace on the club level. The District had partnered with Mediators Beyond Borders International (MBBI) which trained a cadre of District 5280 Rotarians for facilitating peaceful conversations within their clubs.
The District Peace Committee has developed a DEI education program to inform and engage members in applying DEI principles at their clubs. The Committee is a resource to help clubs throughout the District hold peaceful conversations and other related activities.
PEACE COMMITTEE AT LA5
LA 5 has a Peace Committee that resides within the club’s Service Division. Its activities include peace conversations, member education and engagement and facilitating Peace Fellowships (through the District). It has been chaired by John Langfitt then by Manisha Javari, herself a Rotary Peace Fellow, and now is chaired by Lauren Schlau.
Peace initiatives can focus in various areas and be approached using various platforms. In 2020 LA5’s focus for peace is social justice, integrating concepts of diversity, equity and inclusion into our operations, policies, programming and activities.
Rotary encourages and recognizes that peaceful conversations are an effective avenue to fostering understanding within and across cultures. As such, our District is urging clubs to immerse in Peace conversations to build engagement between members and within our clubs.
These conversations are not initially intended to solve problems – although they can lead to actionable solutions. The purpose is to provide a platform for holding non-judgmental and open conversations where people can express how they feel, be heard and build relationships.
When people can express their feelings and opinions, they feel heard and connected, barriers come down, and are inspired to continue to talk and - at some point - move to action. Open discussions also allow participants to see that there is more than one way to see and solve an issue.
Other Peace Initiatives/Activities/Actions
- Holding social justice focused programs on a regular basis. Formats can include formal presentations by social justice experts, facilitated conversations among large groups, and small socially oriented conversations using
- Reading/hosting facilitated book group discussions on peace and social justice topics
- Partnering with organizations devoted to social justice
- Visiting organizations devoted to social justice
- Publishing essays written by social justice experts
- Publishing essays written by club members about their experiences
Join Us in Peace
We encourage LA5 members to consider the many positive contributions peace can make to our society, in our club and to ourselves personally. Please contact Peace Committee Chair to learn more about our work or how to join us!