For Rotarian Purnima Ranganath, Rotary Club has been a training ground. She says that it was a part of her growing up. And that is what took her closer to community projects and through different achievements in life.
“I am a second generation Rotarian and a member in my own right since 2004. But having grown up with a Rotarian father, I have Rotary ideals that have formed a way of life for us.
Rotary is not just an organisation I belong to, but is the bedrock of our life where its ethical practices are followed in our professions too. Since, my husband is also a Rotarian, these values have continued to be nurtured and form the basis of our life,” says Purnima.
She says that as a child, when her father was at Raichur, she was deeply moved by the plight of lepers there, and was proud of her mother who along with other Rotary Anns (wives of Rotarians) used to do service and take care of them. “When you grow up watching such things, they affect you till eternity,” says Purnima. She says that her inner want to do service, was the reason to be a part of Rotary.
“But to get the right organisation to be a part of, when you reach out to community is very essential. Since membership to Rotary is by invitation only, our personal integrity is irrefutable. When I mention that I’m from Rotary, doors open easily due to the legacy of this global organisation,” says Purnima. She adds that meeting peers from various vocations is also a pleasant and learning experience.
The lesson learnt from her time in Rotary are many, she vouches. She says. “Rotary Club of Bangalore is 80 years old with many fabulous moments to enumerate. There were some amazing moments that I have personally witnessed. One is when I concluded a $1,12,000 grant project with M/s Timken India for Sankara Eye Foundation and we gave two buses. The gratitude of the people who have been treated there was immense.”
After joining Rotary Club of Bangalore in 2004, Purnima has held several positions with the club including being the secretary for 2008-09, vice-president for 2011-12, president-elect for 2012-13 and president in 2013-14. “When I became president of the club, my prayer to the almighty was to give me strength to be able to do a lot of good things,” she says.
Purnima, who is an architect by qualification, loves to visit historical places. “I love to travel, read and listen to classical music and ghazals. I am an avid blogger and also love to cook along with my husband,” she says, adding, “I am a homebody. I love spending time with family and friends.”
Ask her how Rotary has helped form her social life, and she’s quick to answer, “Rotary is not just a club one goes to. It becomes a way of life. Everything in life gets intertwined with it including friends and travel. Rotary is an organisation that encourages family interaction, and we are all carrying Rotary in our hearts always.”
Purnima says that the Club has taught her the meaning of a disciplined approach to everything. “I’ve learn to plan, to listen and understand dissent, to empathise with the deprived and do my best to help my fellowmen unconditionally,” says Purnima.