June 21, 2022 - RI Convention, Houston
Rotary Fellowships Month
This Meeting was held in person in the “Safety Starts Here” classroom and on Zoom.  We sang O Canada, our worst rendition.
Land Acknowledgement
We acknowledge that the Rotary Club of Camrose Daybreak is located on Treaty 6 land. This is the traditional territory and an ancient gathering place of many Indigenous peoples for thousands of years.
We recognize that we are all Treaty people and have a responsibility to become aware of our shared history, understand the Spirit and Intent of the Treaties and by doing so we can honour the past, be aware of the present, and create a just and caring future built upon Peace, Friendship, and Understanding.
Speaker: John, backed up by Morris told us about the Rotary International Convention held in Houston Texas, June 4 to 8.  The Convention was held in the George Brown Centre in downtown Houston.  The original estimate was for 35,000 attendees but only about 12,000 came.  2 vaccinations were mandatory with proof required.  Masks were also mandatory but only about 10% complied consistently.
       The Convention theme centered on the NASA Space program. The president Shekhar Mehta and retinue dressed as Astronauts, opened the House of Friendship on Saturday morning, with its information and retail booths. The Saturday evening “welcome” event took place on the 3-lane sidewalk outside the venue and included an easily heard band, a mechanical bull, armadillo races and a US$125 per person barbeque.
        The Convention itself opened on Sunday at 10 am and featured an East Indian Theme—Bollywood music and dancing along with “a visual taste of India”.  The Flags of each country where there is Rotary were paraded across the stage—loud cheers for the Ukrainian Flag, silence for the Russian.  A group of Rotarians from the Ukraine attended the Convention.
         On Monday the R.I. Directors were introduced along with the several past presidents.  The guest speaker was Astronaut Charles Dukes.  A very talented lady played the double violin.  John and Lesley attended breakout sessions in the afternoon: Family, Career and Rotary—how it can be done and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
          On Tuesday morning the main session was about the Rotary Foundation and Polio—we are still on the last mile—conflicts in Afghanistan are preventing the completion of the final immunizations. In the afternoon sessions attended included Empowering the Future through Youth—Rotaractors and Interactors have enthusiastically formed a Rotary Youth Network.  John and Lesley tried, along with Morris, to attend the introduction of Jennifer Jones, but the lineup was too long, and the room was full.
           In the evening they attended the Home Hospitality event.  After an hour wait in the very hot sun, a bus took them to a slightly changed replica of the Alamo (an exact replica of the Alamo is illegal) hosted by a Houston Rotary club.  It included a Mariachi Band welcome, a barbeque meal, and a speaker on local history.  John gave the club one of our club’s early banners.
           On Wednesday, there being no morning session they went to a breakout, “Not Your Grandfather’s Rotary, or is it?” where they were told that the number one reason people leave Rotary is because of the culture of their club.  In the afternoon, the closing session included a speech from Jennifer Jones, who amongst other points, urged members to take care of their fellow club members. John was quite impressed by her speech and the fact that she will be on July 1, 2022, the first female President of Rotary International and is from Ontario. Less impressive were the Hip Hop artists.
             John’s impressions of the event were that Houston can be very hot and humid in early June. Security was very well done and efficient.  Timing of events was less than ideal with morning sessions running over time, afternoon breakout sessions started at 1 pm leaving no time for lunch.  Breakout sessions were full.  As usual the best thing was meeting other Rotarians and learning from them. 
  • The Summer Meetings will be social events held July 12 (Larry and Patrice), July 26 (Rob), August 9 (Alan) and August 23 (to be determined).  Events will start at 6 pm. The host will prepare meat or main course, participants will pay a set amount to cover the costs of the host.  Participants will be encouraged to bring side dishes or desserts.  Guests and RCC members will be welcome to attend.  Odell will send out announcements reminding members of the events and where they will be.
  • Morris needs some help with the “Chase the Ace” draw (benefiting the local Days for Girls team) on Wednesday June 29 at 6:45 at Safety Starts Here.  If you can help, contact him at Rotary.Morris@gmail.com.
Reminders of Upcoming Events
  • June 28 the Changeover Meeting was originally scheduled but Odell and Alan will be away.  KIVA choices will be made aided by Morris.
  • July 1 Alan becomes president.
Rob led us in singing the 4-Way Test.