Annual Internet


Charity Auction Edition

Engaged Rotarians changing lives with valued contributions

Rotary International's 2013-14 theme is to Engage Rotary, Change Lives. The Rotary Club of Kenora has done both, this year and for some time, as Rotary has provided Kenora business and professional leaders avenues to serve our community?s needs for 93 years. "The Rotary Club of Kenora raises more than $80,000 per year through our many fundraising activities and the generous support of the citizens and businesses of Kenora and area," said Kenora Rotary president Fred Wright. "These funds are used to improve the lives of people in our local and global community." Rotary continues to make a significant contribution to the community. In the past 12 years, Kenora Rotary has contributed over $550,000 to local needs. This means supporting projects from donating to breakfast programs for local schools, donations to Habitat for Humanity projects and a significant contribution to the Kenora SportsPlex to bring an artificial playing surface to the former Jaffray Melick Arena. (see list of local support on page 2). In addition to our strong support in our local community, during the same period of time, Kenora Rotary ?s financial support to global projects has been more than $150,000. In recent years, the Kenora club has provided significant support for the Ripple Effect program that is building schools in Guatemala and for ShelterBox who provides emergency shelter and supplies in disaster areas around the world. "Our members are actively engaged in club committees and services that allow us to achieve the success that we enjoy," said Wright. "We have fun in our activities and are treated to excellent weekly programs and fellowship at our meetings, fellowship events and special events. " The inspiration for Rotarians and the community, which is so supportive of our efforts, is to see the results of the organization?s work in action. "It required minimal effort for the significant amount of funds ($10,000) that we did receive, and everyone was so supportive," said Heather Kasprick, a lead organizer of the new sports complex. "I can tell you without that kind of support and the community support (from volunteers, supportive contractors and service clubs), the complex wouldn't happen," she added, pointing out the province provided significant seed money for the artificial turf, but the cost of the other renovations were as much or more. A review, with insight from some of the other donation recipient, makes it easy to become excited about Rotary?s work. A club initiative, introduced in the 2008-2009 Rotary year, is the Local Health and Hunger committee. The committee is charged with co-ordinating a financial response to the growing number of breakfast/hot lunch programs in local schools and promoting health education on other issues. In an effort to be proactive, local schools were polled as to what their needs were and a total of well over $32,000 has been distributed in just the last five years. "Poverty is reflected in our community schools and the Rotary Club Health and Hunger committee is to be commended for recognizing the impact of poverty on children in schools," wrote King George VI School principal Lynn McAughey. King George School expanded its program this year to include healthy snacks throughout the day and provide cooked hot meals such as soup, sandwiches, pasta and balanced snack alternatives that meet the daily requirements for healthy eating outlined in the Canada Food Guide. The funding Rotary provided was used to fill an office/classroom space renovated into a full-service kitchen and program area with the necessary storage/cooking/cleaning appliances/dishes that promote an environmentally friendly, healthy school-cooked nutrition program, said McAughey. The Rotary Club of Kenora was among local supporters of the Kenora chapter of Habitat for Humanity?s first build in 2012 with a donation of $5,000 to complete the purchase of the first building lot. It has matched that with $5,000 which is being used to also complete the purchase of Habitat's second lot. This will enable the organization to provide affordable home ownership to two additional families as the project is a duplex. Construction is to begin in May 2015. "The local Chapter of Habitat for Humanity is very grateful to the Rotary Club of Kenora for its past and continuing support of our endeavours here in Kenora to provide affordable home ownership to those needing it," said Kenora chapter representative Ralph Page. "This is one of the reasons why Kenora is such a special and caring community." Not all donations are of a grand scale, but they often meet a need in the community. For the past four years, the Rotary club has hosted a free Family New Year's Eve event at the Kenora Recreation Centre. ?We?ve had lots of good responses. People say it?s great because it?s something fun they can do New Year?s Eve before their own family events,? said Rotarian Rod Riopel, who brought the idea of the event to the club during his year as club president. "We?ve had people offer donations and we?ve explained this is our way to give back to the community from Rotary because Kenora supports us year-round,? said Riopel. Of course, Rotary alone can?t fill all the gaps. It takes community support Rotarian Cindy Behrsin and exchange student Emilie Poucet were part of the work crew building the Rotary Club of Kenora float for the 2013 Santa Claus Parade. Rotarians Claire Noseworthy and Kelly Williams ladle out chili to people attending the 2014 Winter Carnival's opening ceremony on Friday, March 7. and we thank you for that! It is interesting how the community shows how Rotary's contributions are valued. The Kenora SportsPlex community, for example, donated to this year's Rotary Internet Charity Auction. "The reason we decided to contribute was to give back to Rotary for giving to us, and hoping that someone who may not typically use our complex may bid on it to have the use for something they may feel it has a great use for. It's so much more than soccer," said Kasprick. In addition to being a vibrant Rotary Club, local Rotarians are a part of an international community of 1.2 million Rotarians in more than 34,000 clubs around the world who strive to provide 'Service Above Self'. "The Rotary Club of Kenora has a membership of 57 Engaged Rotarians who are Changing Lives through our committed and energised volunteerism," said Wright. "This is a good time to be a member of the Rotary Club of Kenora!" Rotary Club members and our local and global community are kept informed about what is going on in the club through our regularly updated and professionally presented web site: www.

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