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A message from our President…

Last Saturday, Past-President Janine Payton and I attended a District 5170 workshop on The Rotary Foundation and District Grants. We’ll save info on the Grants program for a later day. Today’s column will deal with The Rotary Foundation (TRF).

“Rotary happens at the club level” is a popular refrain in the Rotary world. And, here in Campbell, we do spend most of our money and all of our time working with other groups helping to make our local area a better place. What is unique about us is that we are also a part of a larger, international organization that spends its time and money making the world a better place.

At this year’s Rotary International Conference in Sydney, I learned about clubs doing some amazing things around the world: There is a U.S. club that helps bring Nigerian sex workers off the streets, giving them sewing machines and the skills to go with them to allow the women to regain their dignity, and provide for their families in a safer way; clubs embark on water projects to allow women and children in third world countries to obtain clean, safe water in their own villages, thereby eliminating the need for hours of walking each day to collect water at some distant watering hole; we learned last week of the work of the Los Altos Club’s Childrens’ AIDS Prevention Project, and on and on. At first I thought how great it would be if our club could support projects like these. But WAIT. We DO! We do support these and other projects around the world every time we donate to TRF.

Here’s how that works: When we contribute to TRF, those funds are recorded along with contributions of other clubs in District 5170. Three years later, half of those funds come back to our District as “District Designated Funds” (DDF), the other half are retained by Rotary International for use by clubs around the world for matching global grants. When the District receives the funds each year, they use a mathematical formula to distribute funds back to each club in a proportion that the club donated to TRF. The more we give, each year, the more we get back, three years hence. It is worth noting that District 5170 is one of the few districts that provides DDF back to local clubs.

So this year our club is receiving over $3,400 in DDF based on our giving during the 2011-2012 Rotary Year. We are using these funds to help pay for back packs and to help fund scholarships for our local high school senior(s).

My goal for our club this year is to have 100% of us contribute SOME amount to TRF. So, when Dick Garland hands out the pledge cards in the coming weeks, lets all step up to the challenge and put our club into a better position three years from now!

- John Shannon

Campbell Rotary “Sweeps” ELC 2014

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Rotary ELC — Follow Along on Twitter!

From March 13 … Campbell Rotary is a proud participant in the Rotary ELC (Enterprise Leadership Conference) program … and it’s happening right now!

Follow along on your own with our intrepid Twitter reporter, Peter Allen.


District 5170 Governor Hassler

Rotary Partners in Service: Brazil

Every October, we welcome our Rotary District 5170 “Partners in Service” visiting from countries around the world.

Today, we heard from Henrique Vasconcelos, past district governor of Rotary District 4490 and the Rotary Club of Fortaleza-Alagadico, Brazil. Henrique was a Rotary Youth Exchange student to Pennsylvania in 1988. He is now a civil engineer working with civil construction and equipment rental since graduating from Universidade de Fortaleza.

gravataiHenrique gave a presentation on Partners in Service and the 3-H project at the Gravatai River in southern Brazil that was supported by Rotary donations from across the world. Gravatai is an 80km long river basin with the final 20 kms being heavily polluted as it passes through the cities of Cachoeirinha, Alvorada and Gravatai, before discharging into Lake Guiaba in Rio Grande do Sul the southernmost state in Brazil, en route to the Atlantic Ocean. The River is of central importance to millions who rely on it for drinking water and to carry away their sewage and industrial waste. The Rio Gravatai and its tributaries also irrigates large areas of intensive agriculture.

The Rio Gravatai is distressed by over abstraction by farmers in summer and by agricultural, industrial and sewage pollution, and dies (becomes eutrophic) in hot weather, killing the fish and causing a great stinks. Bankside communities and industry use it as a dump. Swamp drainage results in silting of its channels, and flooding of the lower reaches in the wet season. Riverside trees felled for firewood or building material cause bank erosion. The urban stretches of the river are an eyesore and unusable as a source of drinking water.

Dist 5170 Governor Coming Next Tue

New Rotary International Logo & Website

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Rotary International has a brand new mobile-friendly logo, along with a new website design.

The main page introduces Rotary to the world, and the new “My Rotary” section is intended for members. Check it out!

Rotary World Round-Up

TRF/DDF? A Rotary Foundation Primer

District 5170′s “Rotary U”

Rotary World Round-Up