Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960


By Pam Stevens
Managing Editor 

Rotary hosts visitors from India through Group Study Exchange


July 13, 2010

Rotary International is known throughout the world as a service organization that helps combat hunger, improve health and sanitation, provide education and job training, promote peace, and eradicate polio under the motto Service Above Self.

Our local Lake Stevens/Granite Falls Rotary Club work to serve those efforts worldwide and in May the club welcomed four men and women from India to Lake Stevens to see first-hand how we live and work right here in Lake Stevens.

Through the Group Study Exhange, or GSE, the four member team spent four weeks in Western Washington, five of those days with local Rotary Club members.

Arun Jain, an insurance executive, GSE Team Leader and Rotarian joined Dr. Divy Sharma, an OB/GYN and founder of a hospital, Rashmi Maurya, Educational Advisor at Mangalayatan University and Anita Sharma, Railway Commercial Planner/Inspector all traveled to the United States for this unique vocational opportunity.

The four were well taken care of throughout their visit to Lake Stevens.

Highlights of their trip included having social interactions with community members in Lake Stevens, Marysville and Snohomish; hiking the Big Four Ice Caves in Granite Falls; visiting the Hiram Chittendon Locks in Ballard; attending the 100 year anniversary celebration at Ebenezer Lutheran Church; civics tours of Lake Stevens High School, City Hall, Lake Stevens Fire and Lake Stevens Police; and a visit to the Monroe Miracle League Baseball Game, a baseball field for disabled youth, as well as experiencing their vocations in our community.

“We enjoyed meeting with our guests from India and it was an honor to meet them,” Lake Stevens Fire Chief Gary Faucett said. “It was very interesting to learn something about their lives in India and share a little of America’s fire culture with them.”

Lake Stevens/Granite Falls Rotary President Debe Franz will be leading a GSE Team to Ireland in August. Franz will be leading a team of three Canadians and two American business people for four weeks.

The GSE program is Rotary International’s (RI) unique cultural and vocational exchange opportunity for business people ages 25 to 40.

The program provides travel grants for teams to exchange visits in paired areas of different countries. For four to six weeks, team members experience the host country’s culture, institutions, and civic life; observe how their vocations are practiced abroad; develop personal and professional relationships; and exchange ideas and knowledge. The team leader is a Rotarian; the team members are not.

Rotarians in the host area provide for meals, lodging, and group travel within the district.


Reader Comments