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  • Writer's pictureLaurie Fenske

Family Day

Family Day was originally created to give people time to spend with their families. Although, this holiday was declared, it’s one of those days when some people take advantage of a day “off” while others face this day as a workday no different then others.

As I reflect on this time to spend with family, I give pause to understanding what family time looks like. Particularly in today’s world where we are still living under the rules of COVID. Is family only those that we are related to? Or is the circle of family much grander than that?

I had the privilege of speaking at a local Rotary Club Breakfast a few days ago. Here is a body of members that I would suggest could in fact fall into the family category. I have always been impressed by the Rotarian’s commitment to community. I initially met a group of Rotary members on a flight going to Mexico. Although I don’t remember the exact reason for their trip, I do recall that they were taking this voyage to make a difference in a community many miles from home. (I believe it was to donate wheelchairs to a hospital in the community of Puerto Vallarta, but I can’t be 100% sure of that – regardless). I remember noticing on the flight that there was a bond between these boisterous, hilarious men that was not only highly evident, but also a bit enviable. It ended up that this group of Rotarian’s was in fact staying at the same resort as I was – which then afforded me the opportunity to learn even more about them, as we often ran into them at different times throughout our stay. As a bit of a chatter bug, I took full advantage of conversing with various members of their group to fill my curiosity of what they do – and what they stand for.

Fast forward to the breakfast I recently spoke at. I was invited in to speak about my work as a certified coach. In preparing my notes for the meeting, I was intrigued to find that the guiding principles of Rotary are parallel to the ICF Code of Ethics. Not only are the guiding principles evident in the meeting room – there is a verbalized commitment to upholding these principles by those in attendance. What a beautiful body of work to be mindful of. Here’s the comparison between the Rotary and ICF:

Rotary Guiding Principles

ICF Code of Ethics

Is it the truth?


Is it fair to all concerned?


Will it build goodwill and better friendships?


Will it be beneficial to all concerned?


So, whether you are taking time to spend with family on this Family Day – or stepping into it as just another day, I invite (and perhaps even challenge) you to pay attention to these four areas of awareness – no matter whom you may be interacting with. Embracing the Rotary Guiding Principles or the ICF Code of Ethics – imagine the different outcomes in your conversations with others: family, colleagues, fellow volunteers, those you lead, or those that lead you.

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