ROTARY CLUB OF MARANA MINUTES
Submitted by PDG Randy Brooks, Secretary
Pledge completed, thought for the day absorbed by all …… lost two famous musicians this week in the US. I would guess that other important things happened this week, but because we try to stay above the fray in Rotary the election results were not openly discussed. Maeve told a joke …. Randy, as usual, did not get it.
Guests: Sandra Vargoe, Student at Pima Community College and a scholarship candidate from The Rotary Vocation Fund of AZ. Will be interviewed at the end of the meeting. She is a working poor mother with two children at home. Her goal is to become a Pharmacy Technician and later an IV Technician.
Joseph Farr, Assistant Vice President, Bank of the West. Invited by Maeve Johnson. He is a potential new member.
Bouba Hamadou – member of the e-club and Tribal Chairperson of Malam-Petel. More later.
Linda Balzer from the Rotary Club of Port Moody, BC, Canada. This is the woman responsible for encouraging Eric Miller to rejoin Rotary. Would this encourage a round of applause or a “moody” sigh? I say applause. Enjoy your winter visit Linda.
Tony Hunter discussed a person he learned about that cannot leave their home because of disability and her property has no wheelchair access. The club determined that we could use leftover funds from our previous “Home Improvement” project to fund this one time project. Discussion about how we need to temper these important yet financially draining project in order to do our best with limited funds. Don Jorgensen asked questions about the fund and budget. The club may spend “up to” $1,500.00 residual funds on this project. The proposal brought forward by Tony Hunter was passed.
Harold discussed how, sadly, there will be no “Boxing for Troops” this year. Unfortunately his home was flooded while traveling and he simply has not had the ability to purchase needed items and organize the event. Perhaps next year. Harold, thank you for caring so deeply about our troops serving abroad.
Dan Contorno discussed Tour de Cookie and said he received a warm reception and interest was up among the riders this weekend at a GABA event. Thanks Dan.
Maeve Johnson reminded us of the El Tour de Tucson and the need for volunteers. Set up crews will arrive about 8 AM and we will host the stop until about 3 or when officials say the last rider has passed. Be sure to say hello to all the dignitaries from Evanston, Canada, California and the rest of the world. This will be a great event. Thank you to all that donated to Polio Plus in the name of the riders (Eric, Randy and Deb).
Marana Healthcare Center will have a grand opening at the Dove Mountain/Twin Peaks/Tangerine intersection on Thursday at 7:30. Please plan to attend and support Clint. Those of you that do not know he is the CEO of the Marana Healthcare Center and a wonderful club member.
Randy suggested members consider donating to the Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona (trvfa.org) and make tax deductible and tax credit contributions to this fund. Continue to support your other charities at schools and church and consider donating to the Fund as well. The rate that one can give to these programs are $400.00 per individual and $800.00 per couple. So I divided mine and gave $400.00 to The vocational fund and half will go to Marana High School. Just sayin ……..
Bouba Hamadou presentation. Bouba was a member of the Marana Rotary Club until the recession hit ….. He then moved on to greener grassy areas. He joined his first Rotary Club in 1985 when most of us were still children. Currently he is a member of the District Rotary e-club. We are pleased to have Bouba here, he is a great Rotarian and friend of the club.
As well as running his own business that provides transportation for the Tohono O’Odham Tribe for non-emergency medical services he spends half of his year in Cameroon, West Africa where he is the “Tribal Chairman” for the Malam-Petel Area. There are four schools in his area that are very basic and do not reach the standards of schools we would expect here in the USA. Students sit on logs in the open air, but covered classrooms. The nearest water is 5 miles away for many of the 60,000 residents. A borehole is being drilled as he speaks.
He was quite proud to show us photos of “Youth Day” where the children were singing, dancing and having what appeared to be a great time.
Bouba was able to assist in building a new medical clinic but no supplies have been gathered for the structure to provide the medical services he hopes eventually will take place.
Bouba discussed issues with the Boko Haram. A terrorist group in the area ….. These people are active in Cameroon, Nigeria, Chad and Niger. They are vicious and unrelenting in their quest for power. Under the guise of religion they kidnap, assault and terrorize locals. 500 hundred teachers have resigned from education because of the fear from these people. This has effected 100,000 students. The military is trying to fill in and educate but they are not trained to provide education for children. There have been 52 suicide attacks this year, 5,300 cattle have been stolen during the same period. A very sad statistic is that 20% of the bombers were small children. 1.6 million People have fled Nigeria in the past year because on Boko Haram. Yet Bouba keeps returning, trying to help his people the best he can. His father was the Tribal Chair, and upon his death Bouba assumed his position. When he left the country to live and work in the USA his cousin became the Chair and upon his death Bouba keep the commitment to his tribe and returned to work to better his community against tremendous odds. Thank you Bouba for educating us today. Our thoughts are with you as you courageously reenter Cameroon to serve others.
After meeting … meeting …. What’s the word I’m looking for? O’ well:
After the meeting was over President Mary Straus, President Elect Jo Holt, Rotarian Eric Miller and PDG Randy Interviewed Sandra Vargoe. We recommend to The Rotary Vocational Fund of Arizona to fund this young lady for her training in Pharmacy Technician Certification in the amount of $3,000.00. Remember none of these dollars come from our club.
Whew, busy day.