Rotary Rewind – Nov. 23, 2022

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If you didn’t make it to our last Rotary Club of Forest Grove meeting, here’s what you missed…

Welcome Back: We welcome everyone back for our weekly meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 12 p.m. at Pacific University. Our own Michael Yakos will be presenting on The Rotary Foundation. We hope you can join us!

Mobility Assistance: If you have mobility issues and would like assistance on the Pacific University campus to get to and from parking areas to our meeting location, please contact Amy Tracewell at 541-844-9467 or at least one day before our scheduled meeting. She will work to make sure you can make it to the University Center. Please give one day’s notice for assistance.

Holiday Meeting Cancellations: Our club will also not meet on Wed, Dec. 21 and Wed., Dec. 28, the two meetings surrounding Christmas. Our last regularly scheduled meeting of 2022 will be on Wednesday, Dec. 14.

December 14 Joint Meeting: We will hold our annual joint meeting with the Forest Grove Daybreak on Wednesday, Dec. 14 at the Forest Grove School District offices. This meeting will include our annual concert with musical groups from Forest Grove High School. We will require a head count in advance for this meeting. If you plan on attending, please contact President Janet Peters.

Memorial Service For Lois Johnston: A memorial service for Lois Johnston, a longtime honorary member of our club, mother of Geoff Johnston and grandmother of Mackenzie Johnston Carey, will take place on Sunday, Dec. 4, 2 p.m., at the Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way (across from the Pacific University campus).

Wreath Fundraiser: Thank you to everyone who either purchased wreaths or sold wreaths to friends during our annual wreath fundraiser. The wreath sale netted around $1,177 for our service projects in the community.

Hope For The Holidays: We are looking forward to continuing our Hope for the Holidays service project this December with a new format. Instead of offering shopping sprees to needy families, we will be partnering with the Forest Grove High School Food Pantry to provide food boxes for a holiday meal. Our distribution event is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 12, 4-5:30 p.m., at the Food Pantry building on the Forest Grove High School campus.

There is a need for committee members to help with the execution of the event. There be work to be prior to the event packing the boxes and preparing them for distribution. Details on when that will take place is coming soon. For more information and to get involved, please contact President Janet or Parri Van Dyke.

Holiday Pledge Cards: Happy Holidays! November is here and along with that comes our annual pledge drive.  President Janet has chosen Hope for the Holidays, Gardens of Hope (our international project), The Rotary Foundation and our Scholarship Fund as the focus for this year.  As you plan your end of the year giving, we hope that you will consider one of these options. A pledge card is available by Clicking Here.

Hope for the Holidays will be a bit different this year. We have partnered with the Forest Grove High School Food Pantry and will be providing 80-90 holiday food boxes for the families that they serve weekly. We have received a $2,500 grant from the district and have matching funds earmarked from our very successful Concours for this project, but your donation would be greatly appreciated.

Gardens of Hope: Our International project in Aguascalientes, Mexico is in its third year. Mike and Claudia Yakos provided an overview of the project on Sept. 28. It is available to view on our YouTube channel. This project has helped impoverished families learn to prepare the soil, provided kits for irrigation and seed and grow their own organic food. There are technical experts who help them get started and see success in this project. The kits and technical support cost about $290 per family for startup.

The produce that they are growing helps provide a more balanced diet for these families.  They started with 40 families in 2021, added a Home for Girls with 8 gardens (this provided fresh produce for the girls and additional produce that was sold to restaurants with the proceeds going to educational and vocational programs for the girls) and an additional 20 more families and 40 new gardens during 2022.   The goal for 2023 is 100 new families and a global grant. Please consider this project in your giving.

The Rotary Foundation: Your gift to The Rotary Foundation funds service projects that change lives both close to home and around the world. Since it was founded more than 100 years ago, the Foundation has spent more than $4 billion on life-changing sustainable projects, improving health, providing quality education, improving the environment and alleviating poverty.

Dollars for Scholars (Scholarship Committee): Our club has been providing scholarships to local high school seniors for many years, having awarded over $225,000 since recordkeeping began in 2013. The funds for scholarships primarily come from the Concours d’Elegance, but if education is important to you, then this is a great cause to donate to!

Thank you for considering donating to Rotary and our projects!

New Member Orientations: Our club’s next New Member Orientation meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 7, 6:30 p.m., at Wauna Credit Union, 3532 Pacific Ave. New members to the club who have not taken part in an orientation should plan on attending this meeting. If you know of someone who might be interested in our club, this is a perfect opportunity to introduce them!

Additional New Member Orientations are scheduled for March 1 and June 1. Watch the Rototeller for times and locations. All Rotarians are welcome to take part. If you know of someone who you believe might be interested in joining us, this is a perfect opportunity to introduce them to our club.

New Treasurer: Lucas Welliver will be stepping aside as club treasurer at the end of December as he transitions to program chair as part of the officer’s rotation. We are happy that Sharon Olmstead has agreed to step into that role beginning in January. Thank you, Sharon, for your continued service to the club!

Concours Concert Event – Help Wanted: The Concours Committee has given the green light to go ahead with another concert event linked to the annual show. The concert is tentatively scheduled for Friday, July 14 with the Concours taking place on Sunday, July 16. If you are interested in helping plan and execute the concert event, please contact Court Carrier at 971-404-7864 or

Caterers For Future Meetings: President Janet is looking for one to two more members to serve with herself, Howard Sullivan and Court Carrier in identifying local caterers that could serve the club at future meetings. We will have a number of meetings coming up where we will meet at the Forest Grove School District offices and will need catering for those meetings. If you would like to assist, please let President Janet know.

Past Programs: Did you miss a meeting or want to go back and check out a program again? Most of our programs since May 2020 are archived on our club’s YouTube page. Visit

Service Opportunities For Club Members
Holiday In The Grove:
The City Club of Forest Grove has volunteer opportunities during this week’s Holiday In The Grove on Saturday, Dec. 3. Volunteers are needed both during the day and for the Holiday Light Parade that evening. You can up for a volunteer shift by Clicking Here.

FGHS Community Food Pantry: Our club’s support for the Forest Grove High School Food Pantry continues.  Thanks to its partnership with the Oregon Food Bank, food donations are still welcome but are of less need at this time. Of need, however, are toiletries and hygiene products as well as household cleaning materials.

The Food Pantry is open on Mondays from 4-6 p.m. The pantry is now open in its new site in the building along Nichols Lane between the football field and the Basinski Center.

For information on the Food Pantry, please contact Brian Burke, If you wish to make a cash donation to the pantry, Click Here.

Additionally, Rotarian Gwen Hullinger has put together an Amazon wish list of items that can be purchased and donated. Click Here To View That List.

Around District 5100
District Committees – It’s Not Too Late!:
A number of district-wide committees are looking for members. If you are interested, you can find contact information for the committee chairs in the latest District 5100 newsletter (link below).

Vocational Service – Lal Bhatia, Chair

Working to promote the awareness and opportunity to advance our vocations as an opportunity to provide service to our communities.

Public ImageDiane Noriega, Chair

Working to promote Rotary through our club projects and communications with the general public and with Rotarians within District 5100.

MembershipDennis Long and Julie Fugate, co-Chairs

Focusing on finding ways to attract new members, but primary emphasis this year is to engage our existing members to retain them as members by finding their interests and focus.

Grow RotaryMarcia Wimmer, Chair

Growing membership will be accomplished by identifying opportunities for new clubs and to add Satellite clubs to existing clubs to provide additional opportunities to participate.

District 5100 Newsletter: Click Here To View The Monthly District 5100 Newsletter

Around Rotary International
Rotary Peace Fellowships Impact Thousands (By Alexandra Rueda, 2008-10 Rotary Peace Fellow, University of California Berkley):
When I became a Rotary Peace Fellow in 2008, the presidential theme was Make Dreams Real. My dream was to support the Colombian countryside by improving the quality of life of farmers and, in turn, to achieve a more responsible use of nature and the ecosystem services it provides. I also wanted to help resolve the social conflict that Colombia has experienced. Or at the very least, to contribute to the development of projects that would spur economic and social recovery in areas that sorely needed it.

I was already envisioning a new professional focus in my life, through my pursuit of a master’s degree in Energy and Resources from the University of California, Berkeley. But coupled with the Peace and Conflict Resolution program, I was touched by a totally exciting new topic: sustainability. I knew that sustainable practices would be needed across the globe. As a peace fellow, I learned valuable tools to have an impact and make a difference in diverse communities.

During the last decade, I have been able to interact with hundreds, if not thousands, of farmers in Latin America. Nearly 4,500 farmers have been impacted by the programs that we, at NES Naturaleza, have developed. The Rotary Peace Fellowship started a chain of positive impacts. A chain of light which we have been able to continue and bring to the farmers.

Rural people have gained access to knowledge and been trained in sustainable practices in very remote areas of Latin America. Some of them have already been certified in existing sustainable standards. Unmistakably, without the Rotary Peace Centers program, this would not have been possible.

The knowledge I gained, I was able to spread to thousands of people. Farmers who in turn conveyed it to their relatives. Entire families were impacted. Thanks to Rotary and my experience through the peace fellows program, many of these farmers are now entrepreneurs. Those who did not know very well their markets or their potential, now have a completely different vision, not only of their farm as a business, but also of the surrounding natural ecosystems that complement them.

Nevertheless, there is still work to do.

This year’s presidential theme, Imagine Rotary, returns us to a spirit of dreaming and doing. We are being invited to act for a better and more sustainable world where the pillars of sustainability become the philosophy that drives each one of us.

Our planet can no longer wait. We have seen it, we have heard it, and we have lived it. We know the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. But in our daily lives, we have not yet appropriated them. It would be great to go back to basics. By knowing the definitions of social, environmental, and economic responsibility, we will clearly understand what they entail.

Imagine Rotary is imagining our world because Rotary is in every corner of our planet. Rotary embodies thousands of people always committed to giving something more. Thousands of people who, through Rotary Foundation programs like the Rotary Peace Fellowship, have positively impacted the lives of thousands of others. It is this chain of positive impacts that shines brightly every time someone in the community dreams and acts and connects to someone else.

For this and much more, I thank you Rotary.

About the author: After completing a Rotary Peace Fellowship, Alejandra Rueda founded NES Naturaleza in 2011, a social and environmental enterprise focused on sustainable agricutlure for rural communities in Colombia and other Latin American countries.

Club Calendar
Wed., Nov. 30: Weekly Meeting, Noon
Boxer Pause Room, University Center, Pacific University
Program: Michael Yakos, Rotary Foundation

Wed., Dec. 7: Weekly Meeting, Noon
Boxer Pause Room, University Center, Pacific University
Program: Willow Oelke, Hope Squared

Wed., Dec. 7: New Member Orientation, 6:30 p.m.
Wauna Credit Union, 3532 Pacific Ave.

Thurs., Dec. 8: Executive Board Meeting, 7 p.m.
Via Zoom

Wed., Dec. 14: Joint Meeting With Daybreak Club, Noon
Forest Grove School District Offices, 1728 Main St., Forest Grove
Program: Forest Grove HS Music Programs

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