WASH in Schools ( WinS )

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) in Schools, know as WinS is a priority for Rotary International.

Your club can get involved in a WinS Adopt-A-School program in Nigeria. Every $1 provides $4 towards the project. Clubs can donate $500 to $1,000 to get started is matched.

Happy Feet for Kids Inspires Acts of Generosity

Thanks to many dedicated and generous members, Rotary Club of Raleigh is proud to announce that we will be purchasing approximately 100 pairs of shoes as part of the 2017 District Conference Happy Feet for Kids community service project. District Governor Rusine Sinclair, also a member of the Rotary Club of Raleigh, announced her goal to pave the way to the Atlanta Rotary International Convention by purchasing at least 500 pairs of shoes to be donated to the Children’s Home Society https://www.chsnc.org/, making sure that children in need of new shoes for the summer have them.

We are grateful to nearly 40 members in our club who donated $50 or more to purchase a large portion of these shoes.

Two specific acts of generosity are worthy of specific recognition, and these gifts come from people outside of our Club membership. Jannah Said, an 8th grader at Martin Middle School, won the first prize in our Club’s Four-Way Test essay contest. She not only won the contest, but she also won the hearts of our members when she wrote this email to Club member Eric Stevens, who coordinated the contest for our Club:

“I was the 1st place winner of the Rotary Club Essay Contest from Martin Middle School (yesterday). I was awarded $300. First of all, I would like to thank you and the Rotary Club for this amazing opportunity. I thoroughly enjoyed and appreciate it. Secondly, upon discussion with my family, I’ve decided that, with the money I won, I will keep $100 to spend for myself, put $100 in my college bank account, and give the last $100 back to the community through a charity of my choice. Since the Rotary Club helped me to have my voice heard and my writings read by a real audience, not to mention winning a few hundred dollars, I have decided to give back through it. Yesterday, during the meeting, I heard a project mentioned called “Happy Feet for Kids.”  I was inspired by this idea and was wondering if you could direct me on how to send the Rotary Club of Raleigh a check for $100 to purchase 2 pairs of sneakers.”

To hear Jannah Said’s speech click on the Four-Way Test.

Second, Mark Hackett, who is a member of our Club and also the coordinator of the Happy Feet for Kids project at the District level, let his church know about this important project. As a result, members of the Baptist Grove Church (7109 Leesville Rd., Raleigh, NC 27613) under the leadership of Pastor Bankole Akinbinu, took up a collection of $2,100 to be donated to the Happy Feet for Kids Project, allowing our Club to purchase close to 50 additional pairs of shoes.

In service to those in need, Rotary Club of Raleigh is delighted to partner with other Rotary clubs in our district and play a small but important role in the lives of the children being cared for by the Children’s Home Society.

District 7710 Makes a Big Difference in the Dominican Republic

Rotarians from across District 7710 renewed our international friendships with our gracious amigos from the Santiago Monumental Rotary Club, Dominican Republic. During the week of February 4–11, 33 volunteers from North Carolina traveled to the Dominican Republic to build 53 latrines, repair three houses, build a community playground and much, much more!

This fifth year’s trip was initiated by Past District Governor Rick Carnagua, who created this ongoing relationship with his counterpart, District Governor Alexandra Martinez from Santiago while attending District Governor School in San Diego. The Central Johnston, Clayton, Cary, Cary MacGregor and Cary Page Clubs provided the initial funds for the District Grant. Almost every club in the district added in to the Community Fund to make this endeavor a smashing success.

PDG Rick has had additional District 7710 support from other 7710 District Governor’s experiencing the trip first-hand, Leigh Hudson, Matthew Kane, Newman Aguilar, Rusine Sinclair and Barry Phillips are all Dominican Republic veterans. Even District Governor Elect Shafi was set to go this year until he encountered his Pickle Ball predicament. Rick brought in Martin Tetreault to handle the planning of the project agenda with his counterpart, David Crow. Linda Sproat jumped on board to coordinate all of the volunteer travel plans, special requests & communication information and rooming details. Once our team arrived, George Harry, Ron Blackley and Rex Everhart herded the on-the-ground volunteer activities and work with our gracious hosts, the Santiago Monumental Rotary Club Team.

The efforts of the Santiago Monumental Rotarians before, during and after our week in Santiago were, as their name depicts, “Monumental”! Arranging for a week’s worth of food, transportation, lodging, and entertainment for 33 North Carolina 7710 Rotarians would be hard enough. Then came the challenges of building latrines, repairing dilapidated homes and creating a community playground.

The Dominican Rotarians leading their efforts were David Crow – Master Planner; Cesar Lopez – Club President and Los Cocos Community Coordinator; Rafael Lopez – Playground, Maximo Dominguez – Latrine Construction, Diana Abreu and Rosalina Dominguez – Entertainment and Community / Family Supplies; Ricardo Jimenez – Financial Controller. Even the Rotaract and Interact clubs brought high energy exciting the local youth with songs and games during the playground ceremonies.

The latrines were a combined effort of the actual families digging the holes, Maximo & Aneury & crew pouring the slabs and stools, transporting them over the holes and laying a layer of concrete blocks as the base for the walls. The NC Team cut the wood siding and frame lumber. Then assembled the pieces in place, adding a zinc roof and a door with a Rotary Wheel painted on it. The Santiago Monumental Rotarians coordinated with the local Rotary Corp in Los Cocos to locate latrine sites for the (53) selected families needing latrines to improve sanitary conditions. Ron Blackley lead our latrine team finishing on Thursday allowing a little time for celebrating with the families with supplies of mosquito bed nets, sheets, soap, paper products, sandals, clothing and an assortment of toys supplied by District 7710 Rotarians and the Community Funds donated by our clubs and individuals.

The house repairs were completed on 3 of the 5 selected houses. Material was bought and left for the local families to complete the other houses. Re-siding, re-roofing, building roof supports gave the houses new life. Josh Davis and Mike McLean headed up our housing crew with several others joining them.

The playground project brought a sense of community and enjoyment. Martin Tetreault coordinated the layout and installation with Rafael Lopez and Dinora Borrelly, architect. David Crow and Cesar Lopez negotiated a win-win with the Los Cocos – Jacagua Mayor William. Rex Everhart designed and built the wooden climber, truck, tire trees, and benches. The grandmothers were all smiles when they found out they could sit, talk and watch the children play. Seesaws, swings, jogging path and a tire picnic table filled the park with painted tire dividers brightening the layout. The centerpiece was the Dragon made out of painted tires. The Opening Ceremony can only be described as pure joy!

There was a dedication of the Otra Banda Medical Clinic that our 7710 provided assistance to CISAMA, the Church, the DR Government and Synergies to build. DG Leigh led 5 of our team to participate in their celebration. The medical clinic provides a clean medical building for medical and dental exams and treatments.

The week was not all work. Our group was taken up into the mountain village of Jarabcoa where a resort provided us a Sunday buffet, a mountain river and pools to swim, and magnificent trails and hanging bridges to wander. The annual Carnival Celebration was over the top with a parade, music and entertainment from various groups all over Santiago. Diana Abreu arranged a VIP viewing stand that put us almost in the parade itself. Every evening meal was special as we experienced The Santiago Monumental meeting including a visit from their DG Morris Tallaj and Monumental’s own DGE Roberto Almonte greeting our PDG Leigh. A country cooking demonstration was brought to the Fab Workshop by Yanet Dominguez and Lydia Sanchez including fire pit brewed coffee and yummy coconut / cocoa desserts. The Finale Celebration Friday night was highlighted with our awarding Maximo Dominguez with a Paul Harris Fellow along with a “PDG Barry Phillips” framed watercolor of the first latrine built in 2013. Yes there was a trip to the Porto Plata Beach, the Lopez Cigar Factory, the Leon Museum and a power-shopping lunch in downtown Santiago.

There is only one-way to truly understand the heart-filling experience that we were privileged to have. Just start making plans to join us for the next Dominican Republic 2018 Adventure.

Our Global Scholar Reports from Scotland

Greetings from Edinburgh!

All is well here. This semester is flying by just as quickly as last semester did; we’ve just finished week 6 out of 11, and classes are still going well. We submitted our first round of papers, and are already starting on our final essays. One of my assignments was to write a blog post about a significant recent achievement in international development and one development institution that played a role. I chose the near-eradication of polio and…Rotary! If you’re interested in reading it, I can send a copy after I receive my marks and feedback.

In dissertation news, I am interviewing for a work-based placement with an organization in Glasgow to do my research and should have confirmation one way or another in the next two weeks.

One of the other scholars and I went to a Rotary club near Glasgow on Monday evening to give presentations about our hometowns, academic/”professional” backgrounds, studies, and future career plans. It was a wonderful evening; neither of us had delivered a presentation for a Rotary club before, and the members were so welcoming and engaged, it made for an easy, relaxed, and enjoyable experience. I’m delivering another presentation at a club east of Edinburgh next Tuesday.

Speaking of Rotary, the crocuses are blooming!

Some notable London/Edinburgh experiences:

  • Colstoun House, Edinburgh. It’s the oldest house in Scotland, on several acres of farmland, and the property also has a cookery school. I took part in a day-long Thai cooking course there, and had an absolute blast.
  • Portobello Beach. It’s still too chilly to go for a swim (although not for some Scots, apparently), but the beachfront is charming. The boardwalk is lined with crepe and ice cream stands, brunch places, beautiful Regency-style townhouses, and an arcade.
  • Panda and Sons. Some friends took my partner and me to an old-fashioned speakeasy in Edinburgh’s New Town. It looks like a barbershop on the outside, but once you go down the staircase and through the double-doors disguised as bookcases, you enter a dim, cozy, wood-paneled whisky and cocktail bar.
  • Camera Obscura and World of Illusions. This is an unusual museum next to Edinburgh Castle; it’s six floors of optical illusions, so probably not an ideal destination for anyone with vertigo…
  • National Gallery, National Museum of Scotland, Usher Hall. The first two are excellent museums, and Usher Hall is a beautiful concert venue.
  • Wallace Collection, London. The Wallace Collection is a museum in an historic London townhouse (read: mansion) full of art (porcelain, paintings, etc.) from the 15th-19th centuries, furniture, and a sizable armory.
  • Victoria and Albert Museum. The art and history museum is just south of Hyde Park and would take weeks to get through. My favorite exhibits were the jewelry/gemstone collection, ancient Islamic art exhibit, and the rooms of ceramics.

I hope all is well at home and that the basketball fans are gearing up for March Madness. I’m sending good thoughts for your brackets.

All the best,

Micaela 

 

GLOBAL SCHOLARSHIP DEADLINES

Study abroad scholarships continue as The Rotary Foundation’s oldest and best known program since it was established in 1947. We are almost at the conclusion of the District’s first year participation in the revised Ambassadorial program. Based on our scholar’s reports from the University of Edinburgh, it has been a truly rewarding and exciting year for her.

We are quickly approaching the dates for this year’s selection process. Be reminded of the following deadlines:

April 21, 2017 – Application to Club Committees

May 12, 2017 –  Applications to District Committee

June 3, 2017 – District Interviews

Information to assist you in the selection process can be found on the District   webpage. Go to The Rotary Foundation, click on Global Scholarships and you will find copies of the Scholarship Manual, the Global Scholarship Flyer and the Scholarship Application.

Happy Feet

Check out this new Happy Feet promotional video for the District Conference starring DG Rusine Sinclair and PDG Rick Carnegue.

Clean Water Changes Lives

As a member of a 37 person Rotary work team that traveled to the Dominican Republic last month, I saw firsthand the power Rotary can bring to a poor community seeking to carve out a better future for themselves and their children. Armed with a $34,000 Global Grant from The Rotary Foundation, we partnered with Rotarians from the Santiago Monumental Club to build and install 94 latrines for families living in homes constructed of wood planks with weathered tin roofs.

The highlight of the trip for me was the afternoon I spent at their community school, Santa Maria, in a classroom of High School Juniors. This school is a public school but Santiago area Rotarians have solicited the help of local foundations to invest resources and vision to give the school the look and feel of a private school. These students were excited to tell us about the service project they had just completed using a $1000 grant our district had given them one year ago. Over the course of 3 months, these students had approached dozens of homes, knocked confidently on the door, and said “I am a student at Santa Maria School down the street. I would like to paint one wall of your home at no charge. Which of these 7 colors do you prefer?” The reaction in the community was fantastic and the students returned in groups of 2 with paint brushes and youthful vigor. They told me the next problem they want to tackle is reducing litter in the streets by distributing trashcans in key locations. These students are learning they can be agents of change in their own community!

So there it is: we as Rotarians identified the need for improved sanitation, rolled up our sleeves, and made a small dent in a global problem. Along the way we helped the community help themselves. I am proud to be a Rotarian. I hope you are too.

Matthew Kane, District Governor 2014-2015
Rotary International 7710

How Lives are Changed

The following words from Patrick McCoy, posted on Facebook, captures the impact and significance of the work of the 37 District 7710 Rotarians that travelled to the Dominican Republic.

“A mentally, emotionally, and physically challenging week in/around Santiago, Dominican Republic. Partnering with the fantastic hard working Club, Rotario Santiago Monumental, on building 90+ latrines and planning the foundation for a health and sanitation program for the years to come starting at the schools. Each person pictured and those who aren’t, yet helped us, are the most amazing people I’ve ever met and got to build a stronger relationship with each and every day side by side for a true Service Above Self mission!”

Patrick McCoy of the Cary MacGregor Rotary Club

The Dominican Republic Clean Water project had four objectives:

  • Build latrines
  • Provide water filters
  • Teach the importance of hand washing, and
  • Meeting basic community needs

During the one week, the 37 Rotarians accomplished the following:

  • Build 95 latrines, making for a total of 250 over the last three years
  • Renovated 26 homes
  • Provided educational sessions on leadership, public health and nursing
  • Held a health screening session attended by over 400 people
  • Provided sheets, towels and other household items to families

The following montage of pictures were provided from the various photographs posted on the Rotary Dominican Latrine Project Facebook page by Pat Bridges, David Crowe, Patrick McCoy, Kelly Norman, Subir Mukherjee and Carlos Pantaleon. 

Cleveland School Rotary Makes Over 100,000 Meals

This year the Cleveland School Rotary club coordinated an event to create meal packages for the Stop the Hunger organization. Working with five Rotary clubs and one Interact Club, during the two hour blitz, 80 volunteers created packages for 20,000 meals. The Club has organized this annual event for the last six years, creating over 100,000 meals for distribution to needy people in third world countries.

Pictured right representing the different Clubs are: Kim Lewter, Cleveland School Interact (left); Don Wells, Cleveland Morning; Laura Nelson, Clayton Midday; Chuck Killian, Garner Midday; John Long, Clayton Morning and Phil Cummins, Garner Morning.

Cary Rotary Club’s Legacy – Fighting Hunger at Home and Abroad

On January 30th, 2015 the Cary Rotary Club held its 12th Annual Chili Dinner to Fight Hunger. Thanks to the generosity of 108 sponsors and numerous ticket sales the event’s profit was nearly $29,000. Add this amount to the net profits from the last eleven years and the Cary Rotary Club has contributed more than $311,000 to hunger relief agencies and efforts at home and abroad!

Our international partner has been Stop Hunger Now, a Raleigh-based international hunger relief organization. Early contributions were used in disaster relief efforts in Southeast Asia, Africa and Haiti. Over the last several years our contributions have help fund the school feeding programs in several countries. The Cary Rotary Club was instrumental in establishing the Million Meals for Children project. Club members, family and friends have packaged millions of meals. Meals are distributed at schools, which incentivizes parents to send their children to school, increasing literacy rates. For most of the children it will be the only meal they eat that day.

Closer to home, we have donated funds to many local hunger relief agencies. Recipients over the years have included the Interfaith Food Shuttle, Society of St. Andrew, Meals on Wheels, Shepherd’s Table Soup Kitchen, Urban Ministries, From Jesus with Love, Brown Bag Ministries, Read & Feed, Raleigh Rescue Mission, White Plains Methodist Church Food Pantry, Dorcas Ministries and Wake Relief. These organizations provide food, health care and other supplies to the poor and homeless in our area.

The Cary Rotary Club members are active participants in this yearly fundraiser. Many are sponsors, others solicit sponsorships and sell tickets, plus work shifts from 8:30AM-8:00PM the day of the event to assure each year’s Chili Dinner is a success. This year we served 1200 meals and more than 50 members volunteered their time at the event. It is a great opportunity for fun and fellowship as we fulfill Rotary’s motto of “Service Above Self.”

Zimbabwe Eye Project     

Life in Zimbabwe, where more people have HIV than full-time jobs, would hardly be recognizable to many in the towns and suburbs of North Carolina Rotary District 7710.

But the Morrisville Rotary Club is trying to connect the two. A former native of Zimbabwe, Keith Holshausen is spearheading the Morrisville Rotary Club’s push to raise money for a medical project that serves the impoverished country in southern Africa.

“Those people are very marginalized,” Holshausen said. “So if we don’t help them, who will?”

The Morrisville Rotary Club is partnering with the Rotary Club of Victoria Falls, where Holshausen has contacts from his travel business.

The clubs hope to raise funding in time for the Zimbabwe Eye Project trip, in July 2015.

“We’re expecting to see 1,000 to 2,000 patients,” Holshausen said. “It’s quite a substantial project.”

The team of six will include five doctors from the USA. Volunteers will assist as they dispense thousands of pairs of donated glasses and give vitamin A supplements to children.

“There are tremendous vitamin A deficiencies (VAD) there, and the children get corneal scars and go blind,” Holshausen said which is a humanitarian concern with a huge socioeconomic impact too.

The high education rate in Zimbabwe does give him hope, he said, for another goal of the medical project – to train local doctors and nurses so the country’s medical needs aren’t as reliant on Western charity and the project can meet Rotary’s goals of sustainability.

Zimbabwe Eye Project: OBJECTIVES

  • To work towards eradication of diseases, such as preventable blindness, that devastates families
  • To partner with Zimbabwean doctors and nurses in the training of medical personnel to improve the treatment of eye diseases and to provide basic training for the dispensing of eye glasses.

To learn more about the Morrisville Rotary Club go to www.morrisville.rotary-clubs.org or email Rotarian Keith Holshausen at keith@lazylizardtravel.com  (Credit to Cary News for extracts from a recent interview).

Update from Our Global Scholar in Edinburgh

Over the holidays, Edinburgh looked very festive. The Christmas markets (a tradition imported from Germany) have been up since the end of November, there’s a nightly light show in the New Town, and there’s a caroling concert nearly every weekend. The semester has flown by!

global scholar 1

All is well here. Classes have officially ended and we’re all in the middle of writing final papers and studying for essays. The workload is unbelievable, but I’m getting through it, one assignment at a time. To break up the monotony of reading and researching, my program organized an international food night. I helped some coursemates prepare a Lebanese feast, and at the dinner we learned a little Arabic, a traditional Lebanese dance, and played games.

In Rotary news, I attended the Edinburgh club’s International Night with the other scholars, and it was really good fun! We introduced ourselves and talked a little about what we’re studying and what we hope to do after our program. It was nice to get to know the club members a bit better, and for entertainment they hired a belly dancer, which was a first for me. I was meant to go the district conference a couple weekends later, but unfortunately I came down with a stomach bug and missed it.

Next semester I will have Thursdays free to attend the Tranent club’s lunch meetings. The other ladies and I have also been invited to other clubs in the area, so after the New Year we’ll get together to plan where we’ll go and when.

And I have some more travel recommendations for you all! The Cairngorms National Park is stunning, snowy, and definitely worth a visit. There’s a not a lot to do in Inverness, but the country-side is beautiful, and it’s close to Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle. I believe I caught a glimpse of Nessie, the Loch Monster, but I can’t be sure it wasn’t just a big wave…

Hope all is well.

Best,

Micaela Arneson