In my household, November is the season of giving thanks. It’s more than giving thanks around the table on Thanksgiving Day, but a reminder to give gratitude and appreciation for the people and experiences that have lead to that point in the year.
Probably like each of you, I have a lot for which to be thankful. In our Rotary family, I’m thankful for each of you, the tireless effort you put into service, and your continued generous contributions to The Rotary Foundation. Each of you make the 44 clubs within District 5150 special in many ways (and, might I add, the best collection of clubs of any district in the Rotary world… but I know I’m a bit biased).
Included in that lengthy list of gratitude items is The Rotary Foundation—the philanthropic engine that powers Rotary’s many humanitarian efforts, both in our local and globally communities. It is fitting that, as Rotary asks, that in November we recognize and celebrate our Foundation.
Here's some very impressive things about the Foundation that merit much celebration:
  • In 2021-22 our Foundation awarded 1885 grants totaling $110M!  And that just that one year—our Foundation has been awarding grants for nearly 100 years.
  • Our Foundation has a global reach. Through our over 46,000 Rotary clubs we have a global network of over 1.4 million Rotarians and other volunteers and partners that work together on projects, many of which are funded by grants from our Foundation, to address pressing global challenges.
  • Our Foundation supports a wide range of projects in its seven areas of focus. These projects have helped improve education and literacy, provide clean water, eradicate diseases, improve maternal and child health, promote peace, encourage economic and community development, and help protect the environment. And, this is on top of the Foundation’s instrumental role in the global effort to eradicate polio.
I don’t know about you, but these achievements of our Foundation make me so very proud to be a Rotarian and to want to continue to support it and celebrate it.
Speaking of celebrations and our Foundation, you are all invited to celebrate our District’s progress on this year’s Every Rotarian Every Year (EREY) campaign at Yippee Ki Yay for EREY on November 18.  We’ll be celebrating at Long Branch Saloon and Farms. Come experience this recreated old west town just outside of Half Moon Bay. Learn to line dance, pan for gold, hit the sling shot range, play cowboy miniature golf, get a photo in the photo booth, play in the old west casino, and lots more…all while supporting our Foundation. If you haven’t already, you can register here. And don’t forget to invite your fellow club members, friends and all your relations! I hope to see you there.
Finally, I also want to pause and recognize the many other areas in which our local clubs have collectively made an impact so far this Rotary year:  We’ve chartered 3 new Interact Clubs; we’ve formed a Mental Health Rotarian Action Group and begun to build a partnership with National Alliance on Mental Illness; We’ve raised greater local awareness of Rotary’s Polio Eradication Efforts; We’ve given out more than $100,000 in youth scholarships; We’ve invested hundreds of hours in local services projects; and we are actively managing more than $2 Million in Global Grant projects….and that just scratches the surface.  
For ALL your efforts, I am grateful.  THANK YOU for all that you do.
Yours in Rotary,
Laine Hendricks
Rotary International District 5150 Governor 2023-2024
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