By Rotary Service and Engagement staff
According to the United Nations, nearly 2.2 billion people live below the poverty line of US $2 per day, and the world needs 30 million new jobs every year to keep up with the growth of the global working-age population. In honor of Rotary Economic and Community Development Month celebrated each October, take action within your communities to address root causes of poverty: unemployment, underemployment, lack of economic opportunity, lack of appropriate training, and the absence of social safety nets. Here are a few ideas to help grow local economies:
1) Generate income and savings
- Partner with a local microlender to improve access to financial services and provide financial infrastructure in a community.
- Offer training on mobile banking resources. Mobile phones, which can be used to make deposits and transfer funds, can increase access to banking systems in developing communities.
2) Empower members of your community through jobs and entrepreneurship
- Provide training in skills and leadership for young people and women.
- Send a vocational training team to teach business leaders in developing communities how to create a business plan and maintain accurate financial accounting.
3) Attend the peacebuilding conference on economic and community development
The economic implications of conflict touch every aspect of a community. Hosted by District 9675 and the Rotary Club of Sydney, the 17 March 2018 conference, taking place in Sydney, Australia, will consider the link between economic development and peace. It will examine root causes of conflict, such as poverty; disease; and lack of water, food security, and education. The conference will also look at the impact of limited human rights on economic opportunities. Join academics, political leaders, business staff, community leaders, and peace activists to explore ways to build peace and create more stable, prosperous communities both locally and internationally. Register online.
4) Enhance your economic and community development projects
The Rotary guide Economic and Community Development Project Strategies aims to help clubs and districts ask the right questions, identify needs, and make the greatest possible impact with available time, energy, and resources.
How have you been celebrating Rotary Economic and Community Development Month? Leave a comment below and share your projects on Rotary Showcase. Join the Economic and Community Development Discussion Group on My Rotary to learn from experts and share ideas with fellow Rotarians!