Leigh McIntosh

As the Christmas season winds down, presents to families in need have been delivered and ringing the bell for the Salvation Army ends, it is time to look forward. Vocational Service becomes the focus for Rotarians in January and includes:

- Adherence to and promotion of the highest ethical standards in all occupations, including fair treatment of employers, employees, associates, competitors, and the public.

- The recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations, not just those that are pursued by Rotarians.

- Contributing vocational talents to solving the problems of society and meeting the needs of the community.

Ringing the bell for the Salvation Army is Rotarian Nina Freeman and three of our Creative Enterprises clients.Ringing the bell for the Salvation Army is Rotarian Nina Freeman and three of our Creative Enterprises clients.Rotary Club of Lawrenceville will be visiting Rainbow Village in early January to learn more about their mission to break the cycle of homelessness, poverty and domestic violence. One of the perks of being a Rotarian is that we continually learn about programs with missions to help others in need. There are so many people in third world countries with life-threatening needs who need us to come to their aid, but we sometimes forget that there are serious needs around us in our own community. If you do not have the opportunity or means to travel across the world to serve people in need, there are plenty of opportunities right here within miles of where we all live. Gwinnett is home to thousands of non-profits helping people in need so whatever issue you have a passion for probably has a non-profit you can get involved with right here in your community. There are many benefits to getting involved with a non-profit. It would be impossible for the government to provide for all of the needs in the community and when they are involved, their costs are so much higher. This is because they pay higher wages, provide benefits for their employees and have to meet strict employment requirements. The money to pay for these services come from our tax dollars and every time we vote for new services, we have to expect our taxes to increase. A non-profit brings great value to the community because they operate on a very slim profit margin, are allowed to seek donations, apply for grants, utilize volunteers, and use creativity in funding their projects. Supporting non-profits literally benefits everyone because they provide so much value. Rotarians understand the importance of non-profits and, many times, partner with them to meet community needs. This is a great way to get the most “bang for your buck.” 

Rotary Club of Lawrenceville sponsored a family with three children.Rotary Club of Lawrenceville sponsored a family with three children.As we enter 2019 with all of the hope and promise the new year brings, I encourage you to make a resolution to find a need that you are passionate about so that you can be part of serving humanity and making the world better. If enough of us join in this effort, we will solve the problems in our community.

Leigh is a proud Rotarian and CEO of Creative Enterprises, Inc., a not for profit, training, and employment, community rehabilitation program for adults with disabilities. A lifelong resident of Gwinnett County, Leigh divides her time between advocating for people with disabilities, enjoying her children, grandchildren, and friends, helping her doTerra essential oil customers, traveling, and focusing on her spiritual journey to appreciate how we are all connected.