Happy May, everyone!

I am excited to share that more than 425 Rotarians and guests representing 102 Rotary clubs in 29 central North Carolina counties will assemble in Charlotte soon to forge friendships, exchange ideas, celebrate accomplishments and learn new ways to serve in their communities, across the nation and around the world. You will hear from outstanding speakers, learn about successful local, national, and international service initiatives, pay tribute to clubs and individual Rotarians who have achieved major accomplishments in the past year, and enjoy lots of fun and fellowship. Thank you everyone who signed up. For those who are unable to make it, you will be missed.

On April 22nd, First Lady Divya and I were invited to attend the District 7670 Conference in Columbia, SC. My DG classmate Tammy Mosteller and her team did an outstanding job. It was fun to meet old and new friends and learn about the good work of Rotary. 

This month, we’re highlighting youth services. One of Rotary’s core values is the belief in the power of young people to create positive change in the world. Interact clubs bring together elementary, junior high and high school students to develop leadership skills while discovering the power of Service Above Self. By partnering with Interact clubs in our communities, we can help to foster the next generation of Rotarians and community leaders.

Another way to support Youth Services is through our Rotary Youth Exchange program. This program provides young people with the opportunity to live and study abroad, immersing themselves in different cultures and developing valuable skills and perspectives. I am grateful that my daughter Smera got the opportunity to travel to Spain as an outbound student along with 6 other students. Our District also hosted 6 inbound students. Many thanks to the host families and host clubs.

We can also support Youth Services by providing scholarships and other opportunities for education and professional development. I encourage clubs to sponsor a student for SFTL (Seminar for Tomorrow’s Leaders). Within a nurturing and challenging environment, students blossom as they move through principles that empower them to increase self-awareness and develop life-changing skills.

Over the next 8 weeks, please continue to help your club leaders achieve the Rotary citation. Continue to focus on creating vibrant club experience and giving to your Rotary foundation to make an impact.

Every day, I am honored to serve you, serve with you. Let’s continue to Imagine, act to serve and make an impact.

Yours in Rotary,
Kam Chandan

Upcoming Events

District Oriented

Clubs Oriented

Zone, National, and International Oriented


MAY 5-7, 2023 – Joint District Conference

Every week we will spotlight members across the District who make a difference in our communities. Please like and share the Reels on District 7680 Facebook or Instagram page. Show these Reels at your club meetings. Thanks to all the volunteers for participating!

Imagine what YOU can do as a Rotary member!

Jerry Bumbaugh, Rotary Club of Shelby Jerry Coughter – Rotary Club of Charlotte, Kevin Kendrick – Rotary Club of Charlotte Dilworth South End and Joan Foley – Rotary Club of Charlotte International
Cathy Young, Rotary Club of Gastonia Dr. Jim Duncan, Rotary Club of Rowan County
Keith Adams, Rotary Club of Monroe Kayla Stafford, Rotary Club of Concord-Afton Sunset
Dr. Katrina Chance, Rotary Club of Rockingham Jan Goetz, Rotary Club of Albemarle
Jenny Richardson – Rotary Club of North Wilkesboro
Jarvis Woodburn – Rotary Club of Wadesboro

As early as the 1920s, individual Rotary clubs supported youth activities, sponsoring troops of scouts, and taking part in a Boys’ Week that encouraged young people to be good citizens and promoted education, health, hygiene, and vocation. Rotary clubs also sponsored regional programs like Uthrotar in Michigan and Wisconsin in the U.S. In Florida, Rotary clubs worked with Wheel clubs for teenage boys.

By the late 1950s, Rotary members were discussing ways to strengthen their efforts to interest young people in community service and expand their worldviews, possibly through a Rotary-wide program designed for them. After a few years of study and planning, Rotary’s Board of Directors in 1962 approved the name Interact, which had been suggested by a committee to express “inter-club and inter-member cooperation on all planes of activity – local, national, and international.”

Rotary members, along with students, put Interact into action. The Interact Club of Melbourne High School, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Melbourne, Florida, USA, became the first Interact club on 5 November 1962.

One of the Interact club’s founding members spoke on a panel at the 1963 Rotary International Convention, telling attendees how enthusiastic students were about the club. Although his school offered many other clubs, he noted that Interact was unique because its association with Rotary allowed students insight into a wide variety of professions and offered them an international perspective. Through Interact, students ages 12-18 make positive change in their schools and communities. Rotary clubs are sponsors that guide and mentor Interact members as they carry out service projects and develop leadership skills.

Interact facts and firsts:

The name “Interact” is a blend of the words “international” and “action.”
The first Interact club outside the United States was certified in India in January 1963.
World Interact Week was first observed in 1964.
In response to input from clubs and Rotary committees, Rotary opened Interact membership to young women in 1968.
The annual Interact Video Awards were introduced in 2009.
In 2010, the minimum age for participation in Interact changed from 14 to 12.

Since July, I have enjoyed one-one conversations with members who recently joined Rotary. If you have 30 minutes to get on a Zoom call or meet in person, please book time here. Look forward to connect with you. Thank you!

What happens when:

14 clubs in Turkey contributed $19,795
26 clubs in District 7680 contributed $10,000
9 District Governors around the world contributed $89,665
Rotary International World Fund matched with $63,440

You have an amazing Global Grant of a total of $182,900 that will supply a mobile child care center, school and a mobile kitchen to help the people (especially the children) and our friends in Turkey whose region was devastated by February’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake. The focus of the project falls under Basic Education and Literacy.

Rotarians know that giving $1,000 to The Rotary Foundation (TRF) makes them a Paul Harris Fellow (PHF). What most do not know is that if every member in their club is a PHF, TRF sends a recognition flag to that club.

How does a club accomplish that when some members cannot give $1,000? The answer is Rotary Foundation Recognition Points matching points that D7680 can transfer to another member to fulfill the $1,000 value. Your club’s Foundation Chair can use the Club Recognition Summary Report on TRF’s website to find this information.

Achieving 100% PHF provides great pride for the club. The best things we do in Rotary are when the entire membership of a club has 100% participation.

Rotary District 7680 is making a special offer

From now through June 15th, 2023 your personal contribution of $100-$1,000 to the Annual Fund and/or Polio Plus Fund of The Rotary Foundation will be matched with Foundation Recognition Points to become a Paul Harris Fellow (PHF). The Paul Harris Fellow recognition acknowledges individuals who contribute, or who have contributions made in their name, of $1,000 to The Rotary Foundation. For example, your personal gift of $500 will be matched with 500 points for a total value of $1,000 to achieve designation as a Paul Harris Fellow. Clubs can use this opportunity to become 100% PHF club. Email us at district7680@gmail.com if you are interested in participating.


Rotary District 7680 was the first-ever district to create an district-based endowment fund (E11382) with The Rotary Foundation to financially support a specific Rotary Peace Center? The Duke / UNC-CH Peace Center is one of the original Rotary Peace Centers, and this year is celebrating 20 years. When the current class graduates, the Duke / UNC-CH Rotary Peace Center will have graduated 177 Peace Fellows!

Through the district endowment, we financially support Peace Fellows from around the world studying at the only Rotary Peace Center in the Americas. we are matched by RI with a specific Peace Fellow and have the opportunity to establish a more personal connection. Our district’s first sponsored Peace Fellow, Peter Adeyeye, from Nigeria, graduated in 2021.

How did it start? PDG Bill Wilson imagined and challenged our district to create an endowment during a district conference panel on Peace Fellows, and it grew from there. PDG Tom Smith and his family also provided significant support, as well as some of our district’s AKS members and Major Donors. We still have room to grow, and every gift matters. Our endowment at our current level of over $500,000 means that we are matched with a new Peace Fellow every 4th year. As our endowment grows, we’ll be matched with a new Peace Fellow every 3 years, then every 2 years, and finally every year in perpetuity. What a way to “Imagine” & “Create Hope in the World”!

Our district is also proud to have two Peace Fellows from within our own district. Bol Maywal graduated from the Master’s Degree Peace Fellowship program at University of Bradford (England). Patricia Shafer completed the Professional Development Certificate Peace Fellowship at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok (Thailand). Districts interview and endorse (recommend) as many Peace Fellow candidates as they believe to be qualified, and the selection process is very competitive. The district endorsing a Peace Fellow candidate is not responsible for their financial support, which is provided by The Rotary Foundation from special endowed funds and general gifts supporting the Peace Centers. Peace Fellows are required to study at a Center in a country other than their own (except in some cases for the Professional Certificate programs). If you know of someone who may be a Peace Fellow, please contact Henry Lyon

Duke / UNC-CH Rotary Peace Center

Rotary Peace Fellowships (at Rotary.org)

On Sunday, May 7th 2023 at 7:00 AM Los Angeles, 9:00 AM Chicago, 10:00 AM New York and 5:00 PM Kyiv time we are launching an USA-Ukraine Task Force. The May 7th 2023 online meeting is a possibility to get together with the most active Rotarians in the USA supporting Ukraine in the continuing hard times of humanitarian crisis provoked by Russian aggression and war.mThe most significant and efficient projects, fundraising practices and actual needs of communities in Ukraine will be presented.

Task Force Goals and Roles:

– Help Districts and Rotary clubs in different Zones in the USA to understand better the current needs of communities in Ukraine, to get updated in real time and to connect with clubs and project teams there;
– Coordinate quick search for Global Grants partners initiated to support communities in Ukraine;
– Organize effective fundraising activities to collect funds for ‘Ukraine Disaster Response Fund’.
These activities will be especially needed during the long period of several years of recovery and rebuilding of the destroyed communities and infrastructure in Ukraine.

Please, use the link below or the QR code on the attached flyer to register for the meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

You are invited to a Zoom meeting.
When: Sunday, May 7, 2023, at 7:00 AM Los Angeles, 9:00 AM Chicago, 10:00 AM New York, 05:00 PM Kyiv time. Register in advance for this meeting:

It’s that time of year again! SFTL 2023 is right around the corner and we don’t want you to miss it! APPLY TODAY to be part of an unforgettable leadership experience.😊 Application Link: https://tinyurl.com/SFTL2023. Unsure of where to find your local Rotary club? You can search them here: https://tinyurl.com/district7680clubs

Global Grant # Partner District DDF Committment Short Description
GG2344675 D2430 $3,000  Incubators
GG2348286 D2430 $5,000  We Will Survive – Turkey Earthquake Relief
GG2345969 D2430 $7,500  Monitoring Sea Turtles
GG2346368 D4895 $5,000  All For the Pink Tie
GG2341059 Multi District $2,000  Ghana clean water project match with Union West Rotary
TBD D3292 $5,000  Building Positive Peace in Nepal
GG2347627 D3131 $5,000  Happy school – (Anandi shala) – Pune
GG2346678 D3201 $5,000  Sastra – Rotary Aid for Spinal Treatment and Rehabilitation
    $5,000  Gift of Life
GG2343143 D5960 $5,000  Sustainable Cambodia

May 4th In-person Rotary Leadership Institute Event

This year’s Joint 7680/7690 District Conference will also feature an in-person RLI event the day before on Thursday May 4 at the Le Meridian Hotel in Charlotte, the same location as the district conference. All three parts (1, 2, & 3) will be offered on that day.

However, any Rotary member who only needs Part 3 to graduate from RLI is eligible for a special offer from District Governor Kam Chandan. Any member who registers and completes Part 3 at that time will have 50% of their registration refunded by the District. Graduates will be honored at the Joint District Conference. Here is a direct link to register for this event:

You can register for any of these events on the RLI website (https://midatlanticrli.org) All events are listed in the right hand navigation bar.

New to Rotary or want to know more – This is for you! You are part of a group whose impact reaches around the world through local community service by our 1.4 million members in 200+ countries. Join us for “Rotary 101” a virtual tour of Rotary and Rotarians that will inspire you to engage even more in the Rotary community. Wednesday August 24 was the kickoff for ROTARY 101, an online program designed for new and potential members of Rotary.

May 11, 2023 @ 7pm

June 7, 2023 @ 7pm

Here’s the link: Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81801636156?pwd=d2sraXFqdWRlSTVtL2ltQ0dIT1dPZz09 Meeting ID: 818 0163 6156 Passcode: 539445

Questions: Contact Marcia Scheideman (mscheideman.ms@gmail.com) or Lorena Prince (garzalster@gmail.com) for any questions you might have. Looking forward to seeing you virtually!

All clubs are asked to submit their CART contributions. Contributions made on March 1, 2023 or after will be included in CART grants to be made in 2024.

If you haven’t yet become a member of the Roger Ackerman Circle, our newly-named group of recurring donors in memory of our founder, don’t forget you can sign up to do that at mycartfund.org also! Our goal is to get the first 100 donors in 100 days, and we are pleased to announce we are currently at 70! Will you help us by committing to a minimum of $5 per month (or $15 per quarter or $60 per year)? We would love to recognize you with a special edition lapel pin to say THANK YOU!

Polio Plus Society entails signing the commitment form and donating at least $100 this Rotary year and each year until the job is done. All clubs and members should give something to the effort. Let’s get it done.

The Rotary Citation awards recognize the hard work clubs do throughout the year. Working to achieve the citation goals helps clubs engage their members, stay relevant in their communities, and run more efficiently. A welcoming and engaging club also reflects the values of Rotary. When clubs achieve citation goals, they contribute to the overall health and culture of Rotary for generations to come.

Three districts are recognized this year for having 100% of their clubs earn the citation: Districts 2820 (Japan), 3482 (Taiwan), and 7600 (Virginia, USA). To earn the citation, clubs must report achievement of 13 or more goals in Rotary Club Central by 30 June. Can you help 7680 get to 100% this year?

Our District DEI Committee has grown since we last communicated with you earlier this month. We are pleased to announce the inclusion of Dr. Katrina Chance of the Rockingham Rotary Club and Ms. Delisle Thomas. Dr. Chance is a veteran and currently serves as the Executive Director of the Richmond County Partnership for Children. Dr. Chance is passionate about access for others and is committed to doing the very best she can for all. She holds a Doctor of Business Administration from Walden University and a Master’s Degree in Organizational Management with a specialization in Leadership from Ashford University.

We are also happy to announce the addition of DeLisse’ Thomas to our Committee. DeLisse is a member of the Gastonia East Rotary Club and has a track record of being an advocate for DE&I issues. Thomas has been involved in numerous club activities designed to bring equity to residents. The DEI Committee was proud to participate in DGE Debb’s District Leadership Team Training on 4/22/23. The event was attended by current and incoming District leaders. In the DEI sessions, we emphasized that DEI is being baked into who we are as an organization and that the past several RIPs and the incoming leadership, are not turning away from DEI. We also reminded our leaders that diversity has been one of Rotary’s core values for years, in addition to friendship, service, integrity, and leadership.

As a reminder, our District was recently approved as a chapter by the founders of “Our Stories”, an initiative created by two Rotarians in District 7710, which provides a safe setting for sharing and discussing stories about race. These safe conversations allow you to engage with people who may look differently than you and have differing life experiences. The central learning from “Our Stories” is that all these stories are important because all of our experiences have value. When we see each other’s humanity, we can bring peace to America. And peace, of course, is central to all of us as Rotarians.

If you are interested in participating in a group, please click “Apply Today” and ensure you select “Charlotte” from the locations dropdown.

Our Stories – Meet the District 7680 DEI Committee

Our Committee currently has seven full Members and about 18 Club Ambassadors. If your club does not currently have an Ambassador, please contact either of our co-Chairs, Chris or Rina Arline and get your club involved as a part of our initiative. Until then, we want you to know who we are. We hope you take a few minutes to meet our members and get to know who, and why, we are. This month, we are featuring two members.

Our Stories: Rotary Member Christina Capello

Our Stories: Rotary Member Kevin Kendrick

We hope you take a moment to visit us at this site which can be accessed on our District webpage at: Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion – Rotary District 7680 (rotary7680.org)


Free Summer Concerts in Downtown Gastonia

Gastonia East Rotary and the City of Gastonia present 4 downtown concert events on select Fridays from May through September 2023. Live music at the Gastonia Rotary Pavilion includes funk, soul, rock, and pop hits from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s.

May 19: On the Border with Garrett Huffman

June 23: The Voltage Brothers with Emerald Empire

August 11: Caleb Davis with Tangerine Trees

Sept 15: Kids in America with Akita

Showtimes: Live Music from 6 – 10 pm

Learn more at https://gastoniaeastrotary.org/concerts/

We were Imagining Rotary and Creating Hope in the World

4 Rotary Clubs celebrated saving the lives of 40 Jamaican children in Rotary Year 22-23. The Lake Norman Huntersville, North Mecklenburg, Davidson and New Kingston Rotary clubs threw a party to raise more funds for next year’s Global Grant. The evening was full of fun and laughter. We were joined by parents and children that were operated on this year. They told their special stories. There wasn’t a dry eye in the crowd. What a meaningful experience.
Our Keynote speaker was Rob Raylman CEO of Gift of Life International. A Rotarian based organization whose goals are to eliminate Congenital Heart Defects around the world. He told us of the worldwide programs to build sustainable Pediatric Cardiac programs in developing countries around the world. Our program in Jamaica is one of the most promising. The silent auction was second to none. And the live auction was a battle fest for two great prizes donated by Rotarians Preston Hagman and Rob Higgins.

A special thanks goes out to Mariano Doble whose presentation of all 40 kids was incredible. When you can put a face and name to all the kids, it made for a special evening. Thanks also goes out to District Governor Kam Chandan and First Lady Divya for taking the time to join us. Thank you for your support of $5,000 in DDF for our ongoing Global Grant program.

We are looking to expand our reach in the District. We welcome any club to join us in our fight to make Pediatric Cardiac care available to the 1 million kids that are born each year in countries that have no capacity to help them. Please come join us!
We hope to see all of you again next year, as we continue our journey to save Children’s lives and train the Pediatric Cardiac Staff at Bustamante Children’s Hospital in Jamaica.

Rotary Club of Gastonia

Food Drive for Crisis Assistance Ministry

On Saturday, April 29, members of the Rotary Club of Gastonia partnered with the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer and Crisis Assistance Ministry for drive-through food collection event.

35 volunteers were on hand to receive food and supply donations at the church, load them on pickup trucks, drive them across town to the CAM facility, and place them on storage shelves ready to help community members in need. These volunteers included 18 club members, a prospective member and her son, members of the church, CAM staff, and a member of the Belmont Abbey Rotaract Club. A surprise was the volunteer help from four firefighters from the nearby Gastonia Fire Department Station 4, who arrived by fire truck and stayed to help! Many other club members collected different pantry items at their workplaces and dropped them off at the event. All together, the drive yielded an estimated 1,040 pounds of food items, paper products, cleaning supplies, and personal care items. In addition, $300 was donated to assist CAM clients with rent utility bills.

This service project began in the midst of the COVID pandemic and has now become an annual event.

Global Service Awards Gala

The Charlotte International Rotary Club celebrated its Sixth Annual Global Service Awards Gala at the Carmel Country Club on April 18, 2023. Honored were Manny Ohonme, Founder of Samaritan’s Feet, and Assistant District Governor Kevin Kendrick. The Reception in advance of the dinner included musical renditions of classical and contemporary standards, hors d’oeuvres, and a silent auction. The dinner in the Grand Ballroom featured a duet of steak and salmon, accompanied by seasonal vegetables, and was followed by coffee and a dessert tower. As dinner concluded, Ann Evans, the sponsor of our international service project presented her personal observations of curing blindness in a remote village in South Sudan. Our honorees presented reviews of how their lives were shaped by their circumstances and how even small events can lead them to efforts to bring about significant changes in our world. The evening’s festivities concluded with a live auction and a wine raffle.

2023 Global Service Award Recipient: Manny Ohonme

The vision for Samaritan’s Feet was conceived over 28 years ago. With that new pair of shoes, young Manny Ohonme went on to compete in sports activities in Africa. Then he was offered the chance to attend an institution of higher learning in America under a full basketball scholarship! He later earned an executive position in a leading technology company. In spite of his successes, Manny left the comfort and security of his executive position to birth the vision of Samaritan’s Feet. Samaritan’s Feet is a humanitarian aid organization that serves and inspires hope by providing shoes to those in need around the world. Samaritan’s feet is one of the services projects that CIRC serves.

2023 Rotarian Service Above Self Award Recipient: Kevin Kendrick

Kevin Kendrick has worked in both the public and private sectors, amassing different yet valuable experiences in each. Worked in the public sector for two police departments, then joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation and spent the next 25 years in the FBI working in virtually every area of investigative responsibility. He retired from the Bureau in 2006 to be the Executive Director of Global Security for the Dow Corning Corporation in Midland, Michigan. He participated in various leadership roles. Since he retired in April 2017 and moved to Pineville, Kevin enjoys being a Rotarian, serving on several boards, leading several “services above self” projects such as MedAssit, Promising Page, Second Harvest Food Bank, Rise Against Hunger and more and spending time with his wife, grandchildren, and dogs.

CIRC RY22/23 South Sudan Surgical Suite Project

Proceeds from the event support our global service eye surgery project in South Sudan, restoring sight to hundreds of desperately poor blind and nearly blind people. Forty million people in the world suffer from cataract blindness; most live in poverty in the developing world. Cataract removal and implanting a $6 lens made in Nepal takes about 15 minutes. Annual eye surgery clinics held by the Himalayan Cataract Project (cureblindess.org) remove cataracts from 250-400 people in the village of Old Fangak and its surrounding area. The current surgical floor is not structurally sound. Movement within the surgical suite causes the floor to bounce, creating a preventable risk during eye surgeries.
The project is to remove the original thin-set concrete sheet flooring of the surgical area, stabilize the floor with heavy angle iron, replace the concrete flooring, and add a waterproof plywood layer for additional stability. The project provides for the purchase of needed supplies; construction and labor costs; as well as shipping the materials from Juba to Old Fangak. Our project to stabilize the surgery floor will greatly improve the safety of several hundred cataract surgeries this year. This project is jointly funded by the Charlotte International Rotary Club and District 7680 Designated Funds.

Rotary of Charlotte South event will also feature a raffle for a special item from Perry’s Jewelry and some very hard to find wine from Bill Belk’s recent trip to Napa

Belmont Rotary sponsors Stowe Park bench

A bench beside the playground in Belmont’s Stowe Park now bears a plaque recognizing Belmont Rotary Club for the donation. Several members of the club gathered recently to mark the occasion. Seated at left is the Belmont club’s Rotarian of the year, Susan Mosk. Standing, from left, are Rotarians Mike Giang, Mike McKeever, Tom Hunter, Jr., Jennifer Grant, club President Whitney Norton, Sam Stowe, Dick Cromlish, Ted Hall, Ken Pahon, Jan Robinson and Rebecca Johns. Belmont Parks and Recreation Director Zip Stowe facilitated the project on behalf of the city.

Gaston County Rotary Clubs Hold 4-Way Test Scholarship Competition

The Rotary Clubs of Gastonia, Gastonia East, Gastonia-Evening, and Belmont came together to conduct a scholarship challenge based on Rotary’s 4-Way Test for Gaston County high school seniors. Students were invited to write a brief essay on the application of the 4-Way Test to their personal lives. Selected finalists were invited to a special event held at the Schiele Museum of Natural History in Gastonia on Sunday, April 30, to present their essays in person. Guest judges were District Governor Kam Chandan, District Governor Elect Debb Corbett, and District RLI Coordinator Lorena Prince.

Sharon Heinrich of the Rotary Club of Gastonia served as emcee. During the event, representatives from the four participating Rotary Clubs also spoke briefly on their club’s activities and their own Rotary experiences: Patti Black, President of the Rotary Club of Gastonia, Thomas Hunter, President Elect of the Rotary Club of Belmont, Pam Gordon, President Elect of the Rotary Club of Gastonia-Evening, and Veronica Feduniec of the Rotary Club of Gastonia East. Laurel Morris, Past President of the Rotary Club of Gastonia, presented the students with certificates and announced the winners. Richard Abernethy served as event photographer.

Scholarship winners were: Mila McNeal, Highland HS, $1,000; Gregory Cherry, South Point HS, $700; Seniaya Patterson, Bessemer City HS, $500 Health Career Scholarship provided by The Rotary Club of Belmont; and Payton Propst, North Gaston HS and Emily Parker, Stuart Cramer HS, $150 each.

Pictures attached: the five scholarship winners and a group photo of all Rotary members present along with the five students. Photo credit: Richard Abernethy.







Andy Peters, Rotary Club of Union West (Indian Trail)  will be participating in the Make-A-Wish Trailblaze Challenge: a 28.3 mile hike on the Foothills Trail on Saturday May 20. Please see Andy’s request below –

“I am doing this in order to fundraise for children who are critically ill; and my efforts will contribute to making a child’s special wish come true. The granting of a wish for a critically ill child is a beautiful compliment to medical care: the wish improves wellbeing and provides an uplifting of the spirit. Further, the anticipation of the special event coupled with its endearing memory provide a well of strength and will to draw upon. I am strengthening my resolve as I commit the time to fundraise and train for the Make-A-Wish Trailblaze Challenge. Every other week we have been completing training hikes with the most recent one at Kings Mountain for 22 miles.

A single wish costs Make-A-Wish $7,500 on average to fulfill; my goal is to grant at least one wish for a child with a life threatening condition. Appreciation to Union West Rotary my home club which has become one of the sponsors of this event as well as every contributor to this organization on behalf of my hike.

The link is below for you to make a contribution to this amazing organization on my behalf. Will you help me support Make-A-Wish by donating today? https://secure2.wish.org/site/TR/WishYourWay/?pg=personal&fr_id=4502&px=7865334

Submit your articles, stories and upcoming events about your Club projects. These will be showcased in our district monthly newsletter. Submissions are due by 25th of the month – https://tinyurl.com/7680districtnewsletter

Offer people who have fled the war a stable environment

Rotary has been collaborating with our partners and other organizations to meet humanitarian needs in and around Ukraine. Clubs have been providing food, water, medical equipment, and other supplies. What people who have fled their homes need most is safety — and Rotary members have been instrumental in finding them shelter. But people still need help. That’s where Rotary members in the U.S. can get more involved. Rotary is collaborating with Welcome.US, an organization working to engage more Americans in welcoming newcomers, with a focus on sponsoring refugees. Through Uniting for Ukraine, Rotary and Rotaract clubs and members in the U.S. can sponsor a person or a family that has fled the war and help them relocate to the United States.

To sponsor a Ukrainian refugee family and offer them a stable environment:

  • Sign up to get connected to a Ukrainian family.
  • Use district grant funds to help with resettlement costs.
  • If you have more questions, write to trf.welcome@rotary.org.
  • Learn more about the Rotary-Welcome.US collaboration.
  • Find resources and answers to some common questions.

Korea’s first female district governor speaks about women in leadership

Sunghee Nam received her doctorate in Education from Yeungnam University in 2001 and is currently the president of Daegu Health College. She is a founding member and past president of the Rotary Club of Daegu-Sooryeon and has held various leadership positions at both the club and district level. She is currently RI President’s Representative for District 3610. Read the full article here.


The Rotary Foundation has established two temporary funds to help people in Pakistan and Ukraine

As a global humanitarian organization, Rotary continually takes action to help communities in need. Because you are a dedicated leader in Rotary, we want you to be among the first to know that The Rotary Foundation has established two temporary funds to support immediate relief efforts in Pakistan and Ukraine. In Pakistan, a severe monsoon season has caused devastating floods and affected millions of people. In Ukraine, the ongoing war has led to a continued humanitarian crisis. We’ll begin fundraising efforts soon to finance disaster response grants from these funds.

The Pakistan Flood Response Fund will help communities recover from the disaster that displaced people and destroyed crops. It will accept contributions, including District Designated Funds, until 31 December 2023 and distribute grants until 30 June 2024 or until the funds are spent. Any unused money will be transferred to the general Disaster Response Fund.

The Ukraine Response Fund will also accept contributions, including District Designated Funds, to support grants for districts affected by the war. It will operate on the same schedule as the Pakistan fund, accepting donations until 31 December 2023 and awarding grants until 30 June 2024 or until the money is spent. Any unused funds will also be transferred to the Disaster Response Fund.

Districts affected by the flooding in Pakistan or the war in Ukraine can apply for grants from the relevant fund to provide items such as water, food, medicine, shelter, and clothing. To learn more and help these communities, you and your members can:

Donate to the Pakistan Flood Response Fund or the Ukraine Response Fund
Contribute your District Designated Funds
Learn more about both funds and how to apply for disaster response grants
Fundraise among your colleagues, friends, and family using Raise for Rotary

We appreciate your assistance in supporting Rotary member-led projects to help these communities recover.

Membership Action Plan (MAP)

“Bite-Sized” webinars, every month on the second Monday at 6 pm ET

May 8th at 6 pm

Membership Success Center


The target audience is club leaders, Presidents, Assistant Governors, Presidents-Elect, Membership Chairs, and anyone else who has an interest in the long-term viability and vitality of their Rotary club. All District leaders are also encouraged to attend.

The MAP Page on the Zone website has past recordings, registration links for upcoming events, and a library of membership collateral: RIZones33-34.org/membership-action-plan

What is the MAP?

It’s a unified, multi-year membership growth initiative spanning Rotary Zones 33 and 34 — 1,700 clubs and 66,000 Rotarians from Pennsylvania to Florida, then extending through the Caribbean to the coast of South America.

In search of a strategy to mitigate membership decline and get our clubs on a path of consistent, moderate growth, RI Director Jeremy Hurst launched a task force in January of 2022.

This group of District and Zone leaders has developed a set of “Bite-Sized”? webinars (1 hour or less), delivered once a month, that are 100% actionable by the clubs. No concepts. No theory. No figuring out how. Everything is there. Strategies that are GUARANTEED to work (they’ve worked for hundreds of clubs), together with recipes, templates, slides, videos, worksheets and scripts. There’s also an awards program that will recognize both clubs and districts for their participation and achievements.

How can YOU help?

Embrace, publicize and promote participation of all your club leaders in these monthly events. Yes, they are being recorded, and, yes, all the material presented is downloadable from the MAP Page on the Zone Website: RIZones33-34.org/membership-action-plan.

Here are seven reasons you’ll want to attend the 2023 Rotary International Convention in Melbourne.

1. You’ll (re)connect with the Rotary family.

The last Rotary International Convention, in Houston, was proof there’s nothing like connecting face to face. But for many Rotary members in the Asia-Pacific region, where COVID-19 restrictions complicated travel plans, Melbourne will be their first in-person convention in four years. With five districts (representing more than 250 Rotary and Rotaract clubs) across the state of Victoria hosting the event, it’s sure to be a big reunion.

2. You’ll explore the world — all in one place.

The convention is the best way to appreciate Rotary’s global scale and reach, says Rebecca Fry, founding chair of RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) Oceania and charter president of the Rotary Club of Social Impact Network, New South Wales. “The House of Friendship is a true festival of Rotary, showcasing our organization’s fellowships, action groups, and community projects from around the world.”

3. You’ll discover cities within a city.

The coastal metropolis is known as the Australian capital of culture, food, sports, architecture, and theater. It’s also a shopping mecca.

Mary Barry, chair of the Host Organization Committee, proudly notes Melbourne’s regular recognition as one of the world’s most livable cities. It is a family friendly place where visitors will feel instantly welcomed and at ease. “The city looks after its tourists with excellent public transport to unique attractions,” says Roslyn Teirney, an assistant Rotary public image coordinator for Zone 8 and a member of the Rotary Club of North Hobart, Tasmania.

4. You’ll be inspired.

Rotary conventions are all about an exchange of ideas. And each year’s gathering brings you big name speakers to inspire, connect, and spur solutions to the world’s toughest challenges. Just look at the list of some past speakers: Bill Gates, Justin Trudeau, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Princess Anne of the United Kingdom. “While still early to announce 2023 program highlights, be assured only outstanding international speakers will take part,” says HOC Chair Barry.

5. You’ll get your kangaroo fix.

Experience quintessential Australia with a visit to the Melbourne Zoo for a close-up and safe encounter with some of the world’s most unusual, cute, and dangerous species — kangaroos, koalas, snakes, spiders, crocodiles, wombats, and platypuses. Just 13 miles northeast of Melbourne’s central business district, the Gresswell Forest nature reserve provides spectacular sightings of eastern gray kangaroos, says Jennifer Scott, a past district governor and member of the Rotary Club of Central Blue Mountains.

Need more cuteness? Head to Phillip Island, 75 miles southeast of Melbourne, and check out the largest colony of little penguins in the world.

6. You’ll feel energized.

Looking for a place to hang out with all your new Rotary friends once the day is over? Melbourne has endless options. Laura Telford, chair of the Rotaract Australia multidistrict information organization and member of the Rotaract Club of Canberra, describes Melbourne as another of the famous cities that “never sleep.”

“Visitors will enjoy jumping on one of more than 475 trams that cover 250 kilometers [155 miles] of track to take you to every corner of this exciting city.”

7. You’ll want to see more of Australia.

While the distance can be a challenge in traveling to Melbourne, visitors may fly in to Sydney, Brisbane, Darwin, or Perth to make the most of a unique travel opportunity by seeing other parts of Australia. “The Great Barrier Reef, Uluru and the Red Centre, our tropical north, and the rugged coast of Western Australia all present memorable sightseeing experiences,” Scott says.


Do you have QUESTIONS?

Call PDG Bob Wilson, 7680 Melbourne Convention Promotion Chair