Protecting the Environment
Rotary started with the vision of one man, Paul Harris.  The Chicago attorney formed the Rotary Club of Chicago on February 23, 1905, so that professionals with diverse backgrounds could exchange ideas and form meaningful relationships. Over time, Rotary’s reach and vision have gradually expanded to focus on humanitarian service, or as members know it “Service above Self.”  Rotarians around the globe have a long and impressive track record of tackling tough challenges locally, regionally, nationally and internationally:  for example, Rotary embraced and joined the goal of eradicating polio in 1979.  Millions of vaccines later, there are only two countries left in the world where polio still occurs: Afghanistan and Pakistan, where the efforts continue to rid humanity of the disease.   
For many years, there have been six areas that Rotarians have focused on when creating and selecting service projects:  the promotion of peace; the eradication of disease; providing access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene; providing health services to women and children; supporting education; and growing local economies.  At this time, a seventh tenet – protecting the environment – has been added as a natural extension of these areas of focus.
An article announcing this new area of focus published on the Rotary International website states: “Rotary shares an interest in protecting our common legacy: the environment. We are committed to supporting activities that strengthen the conservation and protection of natural resources, advance ecological sustainability, and foster harmony between communities and the environment. We empower communities to access grants and other resources, embrace local solutions, and spur innovation in an effort to address the causes and reduce the effects of climate change and environmental degradation.”  As with all the tenets of service in Rotary, it will be up to individual clubs and members to design, create and execute plans to address this world challenge shared by all of humanity.
Fred Horch, President-Elect of The Brunswick Rotary Club, will assume the presidency in July and says: “All in all, I feel very fortunate that my term as president coincides with Rotary's new focus on protecting our environment, and I'm looking forward to doing everything I can to serve Brunswick and beyond in ways that support this new cause.”  Fred has a long history of environmental consciousness, having been involved in several business ventures focused on sustainability and having a personal focus on modifications to his and his family’s lifestyle to achieve zero carbon footprint status. 
Fred will be challenging members of the Brunswick Rotary Club to adopt more environmentally friendly practices with a different monthly goal throughout his term and plans to remind the club members of this important new area of focus by modifying the unofficial fifth item a past president, Claudia Frost, added to the four-way test for this club.  Instead of it being “number five, it is fun?” the new point will be “number five, it is fun and sustainable?” The Club will report its progress and any new projects on its website,, and encourages all community members to learn ways they can contribute to the fight to save the environment.