The theme was enthusiastically received. Also unveiled at the IA's first plenary session was the presidential jacket (deep blue) and theme tie (peach).
In his remarks RIPE D.K. pointed out that every day some 30,000 children under the age of five die from preventable causes. He said, "Every day, around the world, children die needlessly of pneumonia, measles and malaria. Thousands die every day from the lack of a most basic resource: clean water. And many more die from a combination of factors, in which malnutrition and poverty play major roles. I would like to see reducing the child mortality rate become a key goal of club and district service projects in the year ahead."
He went on to say, "For the last few years, RI's presidents have chosen to continue a consistent set of service emphases, focusing every year on projects in health and hunger, water and literacy. I plan to keep these three emphases but to ask the entire family of Rotary to make a special effort to focus on projects that will make a difference in the lives of children."