Rotary Clubs Making the World Better - Service Above Self
Our District 7230 Newsletter
November 2018
Welcome to our second monthly newsletter. Like trees planted to make a forest our clubs can grow even taller together. The newsletter’s goal is let our District members know about our area clubs and their activities. Please contribute by letting us know what your club has scheduled, report on your events with pics and text and attend the upcoming activities that you can. Rotary’s symbol is a wheel, let’s turn it together. 
-John Ehrlich, Editor
District Governor’s Message
Use Our Programs To Increase Your Membership
Meaningful programs are essential for robust membership.  While compelling videos and other promotional material may help promote the concept of Rotary, nothing can substitute for meaningful projects: Rotary’s clout in the international stage comes in large part because of our International programs such as End Polio Now project, not sleek commercials.  We need to take that message to heart at our Club and District level too.
But Clubs don’t need to reinvent the wheel.  Rotary International has set up and runs great, irresistible programs which have stood the test of time.  Such programs include the Youth Exchange Scholarship Program (YESP), Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA), Vocational Training Team (VTT), and Friendship Exchange Program, for example.  Other programs such as Peace Fellowship Awards are, of course, relatively recent but highly popular and impactful in multiple ways.
Each of these programs takes a LOT of time and effort by a lot of committed people, to succeed.  Each program is - and realistically speaking, can be - undertaken only by the District due to the scale, time, scope, and detailed know-how.  For example, the YESP - probably the most involved undertaking by any District - takes sustained commitment and effort.  There's no better long-term program to open up new vistas for, and advance the prospects of, High School students.  Over 9,000 students participate in it internationally every year.  So also, RYLA, while a little less involved, is still a very demanding responsibility.  Organizing, planning, coordinating, and implementing a program that would be a hit with teenagers - who rave about it for years to come - takes a David DelMonte commitment.  Friendship Exchange, which enables Rotarians to establish personal relationships across oceans and develop a deeper understanding of another culture, is yet another example.
Each such Program is of tremendous attraction to different, and sometimes surprising, segments of the population.  For example, Judy Root, a member of the YESP Committee in Ohio, never had any kids, so she became a host mom instead. She and her husband have hosted 22 inbound students, whom they consider their children. Thanks to YESP, they have such children and grandchildren all over the world, and have attended weddings and family functions in different countries. Their Turkish daughter, Sema, ended up coming back to college in the U.S.., where she met, and subsequently married, an American boy.  She joined Rotary and became Inbound Chair for YESP; she’s now having her first baby (another grandchild for Judy and Steve!).  Judy has many stories like this, and it all started with a Rotarian that moved to her town and told her to start the YESP program in her Club. Now, Judy is known as the "Host Family Coach" for that District!  So in addition to outgoing students excited by the prospect of spending time (or even schooling) abroad with peers, even those involved in hosting - the inbound host parents, volunteers organizing events, and indeed, everyone involved, could find the Program irresistible and become committed Rotarians:  the membership incentive.
So too with RYLA. Teenagers find it exciting and form strong bond with their peers, in addition to developing leadership skills while having fun.  Our RYLA enables all Clubs to send 10th grade students with leadership potential to a 3-day, fully supervised, Leadership Weekend held at Alpine, NJ Boy Scout Camp on March 22, 23 & 24, 2019.  RYLARIANS have life changing experiences and positive memories that will be carried for a lifetime. In fact, returning RYLA alumni are the biggest promoters of RYLA!  Teachers, parents and everyone interested in youth development - in addition to the 10th graders themselves - find this compelling:  the membership incentive.
Likewise with Friendship Exchange.  The opportunity to visit a foreign land, and see that culture through the eyes of a local, is invaluable.  You don’t stay in hotels and see the place through the antiseptic lenses prepared for commercial tourists: Stay with real people there in their real homes!  The locals guide you about what’s best about their place, and what would be worthwhile for you to experience.  No language issues, no logistical issues, save a bundle in hotel expenses, even initiate worthwhile international projects!  And form personal relationship across the globe!  Very attractive:  the membership incentive.
The District Leadership Team has spent a lot of time and resources in bringing these opportunities to you and your Club.  Avail of them, promote them, and increase your membership!
District Governor Visits Are Underway.  Meet DG Kris at your Club!
The annual District Governor visits to each of the 43 District 7230 clubs are more than a tradition, it’s a great opportunity to learn about so much the District has to offer to each Club and every Rotary member.  Put out the welcome mat and make it a must attend meet-up.
Rotarian Leaders
Bermuda Rotarians run vibrant youth program. The four Clubs have been running a robust Youth Exchange Scholarship Program for decades.   Just now, the Rotary Clubs of Hamilton and of Pembroke organized and had chartered THREE Interact Clubs within one week, the charter ceremony being held during our annual OTB! And that was a textbook illustration of how to start an Interact Club: the full support system was already in place with committed faculty advisors, enthusiastic Rotarian liaison, and committed Rotarians! Remarkable! Area 7 is the crown jewel of the District for Rotary Youth Programs! Congratulations to the Bermuda Rotarians and their leadership! The District is proud of you! The Four Rotarian Leaders primarily responsible for the Interact are:  Jean Akol, Cathy Bassett,  Susan Moench, and Jason Taylor.
(L to R) Jean Akol, Susan Moench, Cathy Bassett, and Jason Taylor

Cathy Bassett, (Director, Hamilton Rotary), has worked with youth for over forty years as a School Principal, and various other capacities.  Won several awards, Rotary and Non-Rotary. She lives with her husband, Eric Bassett; they have two children.

Cathy started the Hamilton Interact in May 2015, a community based club.  Since then the Club been involved in many projects: collection/donation of footwear to Haiti orphans, and of Christmas food hampers to needy families; worked in soup kitchens for homeless; donated toys, puzzles and books to a nursery school when its classroom burnt out; supported PALS Cancer Charity and Big Brothers/Big Sisters; donated to families in Yonkers, New York, who lost their homes to a blaze; and held bake sales and take-out suppers to fund delegates for International Conventions.

Jason Taylor (IPP, Pembroke Rotary, an IT specialist, is the Chief Information Security Officer of Planet Payment, a NASDAQ company. Jason is a proud husband and father of two girls (7,11).  Impressed with Cathy’s Interact, he worked with her and Glenda to organize the Somersfield Academy Interact.  Led by Interact President Kate Tobin, under the guidance of Faculty member Sharlene Young, these Interactors have already attended a Rotary event (“Keep Bermuda Beautiful”).  It has planned several community projects such as support an African literacy project by having a stall at the Peddlers Porch fair; staffing the food for the homeless at a local church; supporting Pembroke Rotary’s Special Persons Christmas Party; and volunteering at the Geriatric Ward of the local hospital.

Jean Akol (Treasurer, Vice President, Hamilton Rotary), is a 30 year-old Chartered Accountant and Financial Services professional. Jean worked with Cathy Basset and Glenda Edwards in the Hamilton Interact Club, the only community based Interact Club in Bermuda.  Inspired by that experience, he worked diligently with other Rotarians in the Hamilton and Pembroke Rotary Clubs to form Somerfield Academy Interact Club and Mt St Agnes Interact Club.  Jean believes that because the interact and Rotaract Clubs of today are the Rotary Clubs of tomorrow, it’s imperative that every Rotarian takes a keen interest in the development of young people in our district to ensure stability and longevity of our Rotary District as well as Rotary world over.

Susan Moench (President, Pembroke Rotary), is the Principal of the Mount Saint Agnes Academy, a 128-year old star in Bermuda’s educational firmament.  She organized and is actively involved in the Mt. Saint Agnes Academy Interact Club.


Congratulations!  Peace Fellowship Award Winners

The Rotary Foundation has selected two candidates (Marissa Gutierrez-Vicario , and Maria Vizdoaga) sponsored by our District to receive a 2019 Rotary Peace Fellowship for studies as part of the Rotary Peace Centers program.  They will attend Rotary Peace Center at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand, for the Professional Development Certificate Program for experienced professionals.  It’s an all-expenses paid award for three months with two to three weeks of field study.. They’re 2 out of 50 such candidates, selected from a total of over 500 applicants from all over the world!  



Marissa Gutierrez-Vicario (L, far left in picture), and Maria Vizdoaga (R)


Marissa Gutierrez-Vicario is an educator and community activist, founder and Exec. Dir of Art and Resistance Through Education (ARTE), which works to amplify the voices of young people for human rights change through the visual arts. Marissa has presented at the Council of Europe’s symposium on “Human Rights in Education”, traveled across the Middle East to understand how to promote peace and address xenophobia across cultures for the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and been selected as an Ashoka Changemakers and American Express Emerging Innovator for her work as a social entrepreneur. Marissa serves on the Steering Committee of Human Rights Educators USA and most recently was named as a Catherine Hannah Behrend Fellow in Visual Arts Management in the 2018 92Y Women in Power Fellowship Program.  As a Rotary Peace Fellow, Marissa will explore ways to engage refugee and immigrant youth in peacebuilding activities and also the use of the arts in creating a more peaceful and just world.

Maria Vizdoaga,  has an LL.M. in International Law, peacekeeping operations, negotiation and mediation from Columbia University, where she was Harlan Fiske Stone scholar.  Maria intends to advance the role of the United Nations in peacebuilding and peacekeeping, international governance, as well as cooperation between the European Union and the United Nations.

Heartiest congratulations to Marissa and Maria!  We’re sure we’ll be hearing more about their quest for peace!  Congratulations - and thanks - are also due to the Peace Fellowship Awards Committee Chair Merva Faddoul and all members of her Committee for their tireless work!  You made us proud!

District Events:  October

On-To-Bermuda (October 31 - November 4, 2018):  Twelve Rotarians participated in this annual tradition, and accompanied DG Kris Chittur to Bermuda.  Highlights of the trip included DG Visit to Pembroke Club, sightseeing, home hospitality, charter nite for three Interact Clubs, farewell dinner with Youth Exchange Students, and more!





















Check our Facebook page for all the exciting photos!  Here are three.

District Upcoming Events:
RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards):  Camp on March 22-23, New York, for 10th Graders.   Deadline:  Wednesday, February 6, 2019


District Conference (April 26 - 29, 2019):  Early Bird Registration Open!  Save over 50% off the normal rate!

Friendship Exchange to RI Dist. 3141 (Mumbai):  Feb. 14-24, 2019


R.I. Council on Legislation: Comments Welcome

The Council on Legislation, Rotary International’s governing body, meets once every three years.  Its next meeting is scheduled for April 14 - 18, 2019.  Your Club has the opportunity to support or oppose proposed enactments that will be considered at that meeting online. Click on link:
Club statements must be (a) submitted or confirmed by the Club’s president; and (b) on or before February 14, 2019.
Rotary Foundation Grants by Club
Our District Foundation Committee approved the following grants for the current year (in alphabetical order):
Bedford-Armonk Club:  Partner with local community orgs by purchasing new books for children  in Northern Westchester Hospital Pediatric Cancer Ctr, Open Door Medical Clinic & Northern Westchester Boys & Girls Club   $1,500.
Bronxville Club:  The Counseling Center-Grant to purchase of fundraising software to support their pro-bono project assisted by members of Bronxville Rotary.  $2,500
Chinatown Club:  Financial and Estate Planning Workshops for seniors in Cantonese and English including a kit to document their preferences on health care, finances, property and insurance. Bilingual consultant and the Rotary club trains.  $2,500
Eastchester Club:  Partners with Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation with funding for a Summer camp that provides dialysis treatments for children with kidney disease.  Grant purchases drugs and liquids to operate the dialysis equipment.  Project starts May 2019.   $2,500
Hamilton Club:  Project to promote better health practices in Bermuda     $2,500
Harlem Club:  To sponsor, run and participate in a Financial Empowerment and Literacy event in Spring  2019.      $1,250
Hartsdale/Greenburgh Club:  To help the Louis Bronz Children’s Center purchase a whiteboard and computer.  Center will use equipment to teach children from pre-k through elementary school.  Club will put on educational sessions using these tools introducing the children to Rotary and its projects.  An estimated 200 underserved children attend the facility.   $ 2,500
Larchmont Club partners with The Community Resource Center to provide an extension site of the Amigos Literacy Program to mitigate a waiting list of 5+ children. Provides bi-lingual books and tutoring to children requiring English as a second language education services in Mamaroneck NY.   $2,500
Mount Kisco Club:  partners with Katonah Appalachian Service Project with the United Methodist Church of Katonah.  Funds send 47 teenagers and 21 adults to Appalachia Virginia repairing 10 houses. $2,500
New Rochelle Club partners with My Brothers Keeper Book Program by placing books in 100 suitable locations $676
Pleasantville Club:  partners with Pleasantville Volunteer Ambulance Corps with 8 Prestan Collection manikin kits and 4 Prestan Professional AED Trainer Kits for a CPR-training program. Members promote and participate.  $1,766
Riverdale Club purchase and deliver school supplies to low-income K-6 students at an after-school program at Kingsbridge Heights Community Center.  $ 250                                       
South Shore Staten Island Club:  Members purchase and deliver lunch supplies to 42  food pantries close to underserved schools.  $1,617
Yonkers-East Yonkers Club:  After-School Arts Enrichment program - 12 sessions for under-privileged children. $2,500
Yorktown Club:  partners with the Alliance for Safe Kids to bring an education program regarding Youth Mental Health and open community dialogue by licensing “NO LETTING GO” a mental health film for a year.  $2,500
Club Activities:  October
Clubs should send brief reports of Club Activities to the Newsletter:  Two action photographs, with a brief description of the project, and one group photograph with participants
Hamilton’s Education Partnership Initiative
Hamilton Rotary Club, Bermuda, raised $6,000 for CedarBridge Academy as part of its Education Partnership initiative. Nikita Euler, Literacy Coordinator brought four CedarBridge students to the Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club. Scores of student participants will benefit from ACHIEVE 3000 Literacy Program designed to enhance growth of Literacy Skills at all Reading levels. The computer assisted program is accompanied by tests offered after each module. Lesson Plans are provided for teachers along with webinars to boost overall knowledge about intervention using all modalities of instruction to meet various learning styles. A parent component completes the successful learning model. Hamilton Rotary is committed to make a difference in the lives of children and plan to increase their Educational Scholarships and loans to make sure students who are college or university bound with financial challenges will have opportunity to achieve their educational and career goals.  The club also launched a YOUTH DEVELOPMENT HOLIDAY RAFFLE last month to raise funds for the Scholarship and Loan Committee led by Dr. George Cook, former President of Bermuda College. Draw takes place on December 18 and will be televised on their weekly Rotary broadcast.
Yonkers-East Yonkers Club:
Yonkers-East Yonkers Club announces the start of their long-awaited Global Grant Basketball Court.  Congratulations to Rtn. Pete Spano and the Y-EY team.


Upcoming Club Events:
November 18th, 11 a.m - 1:30 p.m. - Pace Rotaract (with The Nature Conservancy) assembling and installing tree guards for each street tree pit on the block in President’s Street, Brooklyn.  Lunch boxes and water refills will be provided. 
December 1 & Dececember 2 (8:30, 10:30 a.m.) - Rotary Club of Cortlandt Manor:  “Pancake Breakfast with Santa” at Muriel Morabito Community Center, Cortlandt Manor.  $8 ($7 for seniors (60+) and $5 for children).   For more info:  914 246-0135
December 5, 2018 (6 - 9 p.m.)  - Rotary Clubs of Metro NYC and Harlem, and Rotaract Club at the UN: Holiday Party Toy Drive.
December 6, 2018 (6:30 - 9 p.m.) - Rotary Club of New York:  Holiday Party, Marchi’s, 251 E 31st Street, N.Y.  $75.
December 7 -8, 2018 (9 a.m. - 9 p.m.) - Rotary Club of Peekskill:  Salvation Army Bell Ringing, Walmart, 3133 E. Main Street, Mohegan Lake, NY.

Please enter your upcoming events in the Calendar in the District Website,


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