International Service

 
You are invited to “An Evening to Experience ShelterBox”
 
Each year, ShelterBox holds a benefit highlighting the lifesaving work the generous support of our donors has enabled. We hope you will join us for an hour of inspiration as we share exclusive updates from ShelterBox Response Team members on our current response efforts.
 
Whether you are new to ShelterBox or a long-time supporter, the Evening to Experience ShelterBox is an hour of inspiration, hope, and stories that personify “Service Above Self”. You will hear from families whose lives were transformed after receiving ShelterBox aid.
 
Our event will be held on Thursday, November 4, 2021, at 8:00 pm ET / 5:00 pm PT.
 
ShelterBox is the official project partner with Rotary International for disaster relief.  
 
“Through this project partnership, Rotary members around the globe can collaborate with ShelterBox to support communities in desperate need of emergency temporary shelter and vital supplies following natural disasters.” – John Hewko, General Secretary and Chief Executive Officer, Rotary International.
 
An Evening to Experience ShelterBox is free to attend, registration is required.
 
 
 
An Update from Rotary International on Events in Afghanistan
26 August, 2021
 
 
Do we have Rotary clubs and members in Afghanistan?
  • Three Rotary clubs and two Interact clubs have been active in Afghanistan.  We are working to contact those club members to convey Rotary’s support and hopes for their continued health and safety. Our thoughts are with our members, their families and loved ones in Afghanistan.  
 
What is Rotary doing in response to events happening in Afghanistan?  
  • Rotary is monitoring as events unfold in Afghanistan.  Many Rotary members recognize the gravity of the situation and are compelled to act and offer support. As an organization, Rotary is ready to provide assistance however we can

    Will Rotary intervene, take a position or issue a statement on the political situation in Afghanistan? No. Rotary’s worldwide membership includes people with varying opinions on issues related to politics, government and political parties.  For this reason, Rotary does not take corporate action or express opinions on subjects related to government, political or ruling parties or entities. *
           
  • Our clubs and members are taking humanitarian action by advocating for the people of Afghanistan and mobilizing to provide immediate and long-term help.  The connections that drive and strengthen Rotary are already at work as members network with each other and our partners to assess what is needed by Afghan citizens who remain in the country, and to provide aid to refugees who have fled the country and are resettling elsewhere. 
     
  • As we gather more information about on-the-ground needs, we expect to see new project proposals aimed at providing local humanitarian aid for Afghanistan and support for refugees and displaced persons.  
 
  1. Contact your local club, district and zone leaders to determine if there are Rotary-led efforts with capabilities to evacuate and facilitate relocations for refugees.  
  2. Clubs can also connect to the Rotary Action Group for Refugees, Forced Displacement and Migration for more information and guidance on developing local resettlement efforts to help refugees transition. You can connect at www.ragforrefugees.org.
  3. Members and participants can also help respond by contacting local government officials that are committing to providing aid to Afghan refugees to see how you can augment their efforts.  
  • We can also leverage our expertise in promoting peace and conflict resolution to help advance global peacebuilding efforts. The situation unfolding in Afghanistan is a vivid reminder that security alone is not a sustainable solution. Our experiences with the Peacebuilding and Conflict Prevention Area of Focus and support for Rotary’s Peace Center network tells us that lasting peace goes beyond the absence of violence. The root causes and conditions that foster conflict must be addressed, with communities putting into place such factors as good governance, access to needed services, sound business environments, and respect for human rights.  
 
Given President Shekhar’s focus on empowering girls, are we doing anything to support girls in Afghanistan?
  • Rotary has asked clubs worldwide to embrace opportunities to empower girls as one of this year’s Presidential Initiatives. Rotary clubs have long supported efforts to help girls in Afghanistan and we remain committed to our work. If circumstances permit, clubs are encouraged to seek out ways to support girls in Afghanistan.
 
How will this affect our polio eradication efforts in Afghanistan? 
  • In 2021, despite internal conflicts and a global pandemic, Afghanistan is seeing unprecedentedly low transmission of wild polio, with just one case reported this year. Not only has the country seen a drastic reduction in cases of wild polio, polio surveillance data confirms this progress. Significantly less virus is being detected in the environment. As conflict in Afghanistan quickly evolves, we must advocate for the children of Afghanistan. The polio program must continue to operate and collaborate with all stakeholders involved to ensure that polio immunization remains a high priority so that the gains we have made against polio do not diminish. We look forward to working with our polio eradication partners and the Afghan people to completely eradicate polio. 
 
 *From RI Code

26.020.  Rotary and Politics

Because its world-wide membership includes persons of many facets of political opinion, no corporate action or corporate expression of opinion shall be taken or given by Rotary on political subjects.  (April 2016 Mtg., Bd. Dec. 157)
Source:  November 1964 Mtg., Bd. Dec. 89
 
 
Decubitus (AKA “pressure ulcers,” or more commonly known as “bed sores”) is an uncomfortable subject to discuss.  However, many of us face it either directly or via a loved one at some point in our lives.
  
In our local environment, available medical staff usually has the knowledge and tools to combat the advancement of this potentially fatal disease.  However, in many cultures abroad this is not the case.
 
In 2015, Global Grant #1419539 successfully partnered The Rotary Club of Sun City West (D5495) with RC Miskolc-Tapolca (D1911) to combat the advancement of decubitus in two hospices, four hospital wards, and one nursing home in three Hungarian communities.
 
Phoenix Rotary 100 (D5495) plans to partner with RC Miskolc-Tapolca for Round 2 of this fight.  We are looking for additional team members to join us to help conquer this terrible disease.   Round 2 will use the proven methodology of Round 1.  This will permit Rotarians to expand their reach and “do good in the world” for the residents of more communities throughout Hungary.
 
The project will address the needs of bedridden patients receiving long term acute or chronic hospital care, and critical end-of-life issues for the elderly in selected hospitals, nursing homes, and retirement communities.  Specifically, it will fund the procurement, delivery, installation, and training for several types of state-of-the-art mattresses and suspension systems to counteract the development of decubitus, a debilitating and fatal disease if unchecked.
 
There is a short and very graphic .ppt presentation that addresses the original (Round 1) project.  It summarizes the successful completion of that Global Grant and lays out the goals for Round 2.  This presentation can be compressed into a 15-20 minutes segment and include some time for Q&A.  It is available to be shown via Zoom to your club’s members and/or board. 
 
Should you wish to schedule a presentation, contact Jim Dowler at james.k.dowler@gmail.com.
 
 
 
Pearlette Ramos, Rotary 100 Member, is creating a documentary entitled Three (Extra)Ordinary Women using her upcoming climb up Kilimanjaro (September 2021) as a metaphor for the struggle too many girls and women must overcome, particularly race and gender inequality, to find their rightful place in our world.
 
Please view this 4 minute clip to get a glimpse into these women’s lives, and the journey they are about to take.
 
This project aligns perfectly with the statements of our Rotary International President Shekhar Mehta:
 
"Equality is a fundamental human right, and it's necessary for a peaceful, prosperous, and sustainable world. Still, girls and women worldwide face inequities in areas including health and education and experience significant violence and disproportionate poverty. 
 
Rotary encourages clubs and districts to prioritize projects that improve the health, well-being, education, and economic security of girls in their communities and around the world. Take on a club-based initiative, a district grant, or a global grant that engages members of your community in a project that will protect and empower girls and increase equity by ensuring their access to resources that will improve their lives."emphasis added. 
 
Pearlette and her hiking sisters’ fund-raising goal is $700,000. This amount includes making the documentary and the social impact campaign that that will focus on showing this documentary to women and girls across the world. 
The Social Impact Campaign
The film will be strengthened through a Social Impact Campaign which will be initiated after the film’s release in April 2022. Having the ability to catalyze positive change and inspire solutions through storytelling, the social impact campaign will include a combination of film festival runs, broadcast, virtual and in-person community screenings aimed at:
1.   Bringing together educators, policymakers, social justice advocates, non-profits and grass root organizers for an educational campaign aimed at advancing gender and racial equality and peacebuilding locally and globally;
2.    Strengthening the capacity of girls and women to engage in collaborative approaches and community networks that support and inspire girls and women to step into leadership roles; and
3.   Encouraging humans everywhere to have meaningful dialogue about human differences and similarities—and the value of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The campaign will be targeted to Rotarians and non-Rotarians alike.
We request you and your club's support for this effort. Please join us in making this worthy project a reality.
 
* The contribution can be made through Film Independent a 501(c)(3)    https://my.filmindependent.org/ThreeExtraordinaryWomen 
 
 
Dear District 5495 Rotarians:
 
ShelterBox is sending a response team to the Caribbean region, after a powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake and aftershocks that struck Haiti on Saturday.
 
We are seeking support from Rotary clubs and districts to help in our efforts at https://www.shelterboxusa.org/2021-haiti-earthquake
 
Buildings have been flattened. Hospitals already under strain from COVID-19 are overwhelmed. Now with Haiti in the path of Tropical Storm Grace, survivors of the earthquake could be hit by strong winds, driving rain, flooding, and mudslides. Many will be facing these conditions with their homes already destroyed. Rescue efforts could be severely affected.
 
The ShelterBox team will work with fellow humanitarians to assess damage reports, understand from communities what they need, and work on the challenging logistics of delivering aid to areas where buildings have been reduced to rubble.
 
Early reports are that almost 3,000 homes have been destroyed and at least 5,400 more damaged – but search and rescue is the priority right now, so damage reports will soar in the coming days and weeks.
We’ve responded several times to Haiti, including the Las Cayes region near the earthquake epicenter.
 
We will be using everything we’ve learned, and our close partnership with Rotary International, to forge local connections and make sure the right emergency shelter reaches communities when they need it. Our Partnerships will be critical to us navigating logistical challenges, but they also inform the way we work with hard-to-reach communities to provide the support they need and share skills for the future.
 
From our response to the Les Cayes region after Hurricane Matthew in 2016, we know that the geography near the quake’s epicenter could make access to vulnerable communities – and the materials they need to recover – especially challenging. Homes are often made from concrete, wood and corrugated iron, leaving them vulnerable to strong earthquakes. Heavy rainfall from Tropical Storm Grace could cut off roads. Communities will want to recover/rebuild. It is important that we listen and respond in a way that supports these efforts while doing no harm.
 
In 2016, people were trying to repair their homes or build temporary shelters, so they could move out of collective centers – but this was challenging because of restricted access to resources. This lack of access to materials was due to the geography of the area and the underlying poverty. The move to leave collective centers will be even more urgent in the age of COVID-19, and the low vaccination rates in Haiti.
 
Please share this within District 5495 and your help with any available funds is greatly appreciated, thank you.
 
Bill

ShelterBox USA
Bill Tobin
Rotary Relations Manager

m: 916.616.6973
w: www.shelterboxusa.org