Posted on Dec 31, 2018

Geneseo Rotary Club's President Bill Bordwell has returned from India.  He went with a program called Rotary Friendship Exchange (RFE).  The rest of this article was provided by Bill himself.


Rotarians from India visited Illinois in June.  The Geneseo club was not involved with their visit to Illinois. I participated with eight Rotarians from Illinois visiting India.  We flew out of O'Hare airport on November 10, 2018 and returned on November 21,2018.  The main reason we wanted to visit at this time was, the Rotarians in the area we were visiting were conducting a select area Polio vaccination. They call the vaccination the SNID or Select National Inoculations Day.  The vaccinations are all done on the same day.  India has been Polio free since 2012.  Currently there are three countries in the world that still have cases of polio.  They are Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Pakistan.  Pakistan is a neighboring country to India and the vaccinations were done in a province that borders Pakistan.


The Rotarians were very good hosts.  When we arrived in India at the airport it was 3:30 am.  There were Rotarians there waiting to greet us.   We stayed a few hours at a hotel upon arrival.  The rest of the trip we stayed in Rotarian homes. Two of my host were medical doctors and the third home both husband and wife were engineers.

We traveled around in a small air-conditioned bus.  Our hosts provided all our food and transportation.  The climate was very dry and hot.  The temperature ranged from 60 - 95 degrees, and it did not rain during out trip. They do have a rainy season during the spring. The heat was not a problem if you were in the shade during the hottest part of the day. Favorite Indian sites we visited included; The Statue of Unity and the Museum of Mahatma Gandhi.   


The Rotary clubs in India are the fastest growing rotary clubs in the world.  They do many projects to help their fellow citizens.  Some of the places we visited included a school for developmentally delayed children, and a Rotary Eye Hospital where they do all types of eye surgery.