Weekly Newsletter | February 23, 2016

Club members Cynthia Witham and Bo Nyleen departed for Haiti last week, along with their spouses and another Rotarian from Keizer named Doug Lusk. One of their missions is to visit the locations where wells and latrines have been installed under the sponsorship of Rotary. Our Club and others in the Willamette Valley banded together in two previous Rotary projects to make these facilities a reality for the villagers in Haiti. Since the magnitude 7.0 earthquake struck early in 2010, the majority of Haitians are still without electricity. And many are without clean water to drink.
One of the wells is currently pumping safe drinking water for a nearby orphanage. Another one is in a small city, next door to a hospital that had been boiling their water to use for surgery.

A six-stall latrine has also been installed, helping the villagers avoid contaminating their available water sources.
Their key local contact in Haiti has been a Rotarian named Lavaud. Do you remember his visit to Salem last summer, his inspiring talk for our Club, and the beautiful reception at Don and Teresa Lulay’s new home? During this current visit to Haiti, Lavaud will show Cynthia and Bo the locations where the next set of wells and latrines will be installed. A third Global Grant for $60,000 is being written right now by our own Howard Baumann. It takes many, many hours of dedicated time to prepare the grant and gather the funding from the different Clubs. Howard and the International Service committee have been gathering pledges to total $18,000, the amount needed to attract Rotary matching funds. This funding is expected to come not only from our Club, but from 9 other regional Clubs.
Howard hopes to secure all the pledges they need and submit the grant request during March of this year. This has been a labor of love for Howard, Cynthia, Bo, and the dedicated members of the International Service committee. Because of them and our Rotarian partners, thousands of Haitian villagers now have safe water to drink and a chance at a better life.
Please note that this week’s (Feb 24) Club meeting will take place in the Dye House at Willamette Heritage Center. I will be required to miss this meeting, due to an all-day seminar in Portland. According to our Club’s bylaws, the President-Elect shall preside over this meeting in my absence. So, please be nice to Steve Ickes!