Rotarians reminded of the importance of service
Freeport News Reporter
Members of the Rotary Club of Lucaya were reminded of the importance of service during the group's weekly luncheon at Ruby Swiss yesterday where director of the Grand Bahama Youth Choir Kevin Tomlinson spoke on the topic, "Turning the Wheel of Rotary Once Again."
Tomlinson, who shared that he was raised by his grandmother, said he cried while she was hospitalized, but became angry when she died.
"I got angry not because of her dying. I got angry because for the first time in my life I realized that I was going to die," he said. "Every human being has a final fate."
He said her death pushed him to use his life and the tool he was given to better his community.
Tomlinson said he looked at the history of Rotary and Paul Harris who founded the organization.
"The guy was a lawyer, a very successful lawyer and decided to do more with his life for people," he said.
Tomlinson said he decided to assist the community instead of reveling in his own success.
"What struck me about this story was not so much that Mr. Harris had the vision to help his community, but the method that he used, getting some friends together and meeting in the various offices," he said.
Tomlinson said Rotary is not about one person, but each person contributing.
He noted that he recently encountered a single mother of three in tears who felt like giving up because of the difficulty she was experiencing raising her children.
Tomlinson said he encouraged her to press forward and keep fighting, noting that his own grandmother raised him in a household of six people as the sole breadwinner on a salary of $130 a week.
He added that he also encountered a man recently who was depressed that his life had not taken the direction he had envisioned.
"I said when your life comes to a place and they are just scraps all around, do you stand there and do you say, 'listen man I am going to walk away' or do you try and make the pieces fit?"
Tomlinson said he encouraged him to pick himself up and start anew.
"It is time for the spirit of Rotary to not just dwell in the room of Ruby Swiss, but in the community in which we live. There are people out there who need to hear, don't quit," he said.
He noted that Harris developed an idea that can change the world.
"How many ideas are in this room that can change Grand Bahama, the wider Bahamas and the world, but are lying dormant?
"Our ideas are what is going to change our environment and with our ideas our focus on making our community a better place and adding values to our community," Tomlinson said.
He said that he uses music to work on the minds of young people.
"If our children discover who they are, they will automatically know who they are not," Tomlinson said.
He pointed out that the country has to save the current generation and club members could use their individual tools to mentor and train young minds, if people are willing to invest the time.
According to Tomlinson, many children are failing the school system not because they are dumb, but they don't have direction and the community faces a lot of problems, but people must be willing to give their time to address them.
"If Grand Bahama is going to change, it's going to take me and you and you and you," Tomlinson told Rotarians.
© 2012 The Freeport News