Why should we care about “winning” a District club award? Or for that matter, an RI Presidential Citation? Good question, don’t you think? After all, I don’t know any Rotarians who serve the local or international community because they want to win an award. And actually applying for the awards does take a certain amount of effort that could be better spent….serving the community. Larry Leahy, our District Awards Chair, has made the process as easy as possible with simple forms to complete that allow you to win Gold, Silver, or Bronze awards based on earning points for Club Service, Vocational Service, Community Service, New Generations, and International Service. But even so….why bother?
Here are three good reasons to apply for and WIN an award (in no particular order):
Reason Number One: It will help you recruit new members. It will especially help small clubs recruit new members. How? Because the award allows you to say that you are “an award winning” club, and for many potential recruits that could be meaningful. In fact, it is an important third-party confirmation that you have a GREAT Rotary club no matter how big your club is.
Reason Number Two: It will help you to retain your current members. The old saying is, “familiarity breeds contempt,” and unfortunately at times that can be true in our clubs. Long-time members may no longer appreciate just how good your club is and the breadth of services you provide. Winning an award is a great confirmation that they have made an excellent choice to be a Rotarian in YOUR CLUB. Winning always feels good. Remember, Rotary is a team sport and in this case winning an award give the team something to cheer about.
Reason Number Three: The award could be newsworthy. At a minimum its worth letting the local paper know you are an “award winning” club. Any further PR you do as a club can include the fact that you won your award. It turns out the community just might be interested that the local Rotary club is an award winning club. Be creative in letting them know. While you and I know that it is isn’t that difficult to win some kind of District award, let’s keep it a secret between us. As far as the community and the press is concerned, your club just won a very exclusive award.
There you go. Three good reasons to apply for and win some club awards. Deadline for the submission is March 31, 2014. If you have any questions about District awards contact Larry Leahy at Leahy620@verizon.net. And by the way…it’s perfectly OK to be a little cocky while you strut up to the front of the room to accept the award for your club at the District Conference.