Rotary District 6650
      August 2017 Bulletin
Volume 1 |  Issue 2                                               September is Basic Education and Literacy Month
District Governor's Corner
Governor’s Column (August 2017)
August is Membership Month, and building membership in 6650 is my priority for my 2017-2018. Why is membership so important? Because membership is like a good marriage. It requires constant attention and renewal. New members bring new ideas and new energy. New members replace members who leave. Every club, no matter how great and energetic, experiences significant attrition. In the United States, the average attrition rate is about  6% per year. So if your club has 50 members, you will likely lose 3 on average every year. Over a decade, that is half your club. If you have not been bringing in new members, your club will become increasingly less viable.
Membership as a Way to Invigorate a Club
This year I have challenged every club to focus on membership and to bring new members into the club. Clubs who achieve the goal of a 10% net growth (minimum of 5 new members) will receive a Paul Harris Fellowship. I believe in incentives; hence the Paul Harris Fellowship for growth. However, I believe even more in natural incentives. Having new members reaffirms the prestige of being a member of your club, of being in the community group that has the vision and capability of moving your community forward.
How to Attract Members
I lived in Buffalo for 25 years. We had more of our share of football seasons that would make the Browns look like a dynasty by comparison. However, we did have a period when everything came together and we played in four straight Super Bowls. [Note that I have conveniently left off how we did in those Super Bowls.] I remember well a press conference in which a sports reporter asked Ralph Wilson, the owner of the Bills, how he planned to market the team in the coming year. Wilson looked puzzled as he replied, “You market a football team by winning.”
I do not believe that there is any special strategy to bring in new members. It is a combination of things that contribute to a club’s growth, starting with being the best club you can be. The 2017-2018 Presidential theme is Rotary: Making a Difference. If your club is improving the community, high quality members of your community will want to be a part of your club. But those potential members need to know about your achievements, so public relations is important. But even more important is to invite people to your club meetings on a regular basis. Do not try to read their mind about whether they want to be a Rotarian. Invite them to meet you and find out what you are doing as a club. I suspect that all will go away with a better appreciation for your club and will at least be more likely to support your club projects. However, many will want to learn more and may well want to join.
I have a button that reads “Get your ASK in Gear.” I got that button from John T. Capps, a Rotarians from North Carolina, who is a passionate speaker on behalf of Rotary. I am a Rotary member because someone invited me to a meeting and later invited me to join. I encourage you to ask people, but do not push too hard or too soon. That is a bit like proposing marriage on the first date. But invite people to meetings so that they can begin the Rotary dating process and, if the chemistry is right, will commit to membership!
The Military Family Center
I want to bring your attention to an incredible project within our district. It is called the Military Family Center (5495 Meese Road, Louisville, OH). This is an equine-therapy program for military vets and first responders suffering from PTSD. Research shows that working with horses has a very calming effect on people with PTSD, so our District wrote a grant to get equipment to provide physical rehabilitation to supplement such a program. What makes this grant particularly interesting is that a district in India contributed $20,000 to the program. In the past, we have contributed to numerous water programs in India.
I hope that all of you will consider visiting this program for the open house scheduled for September 23 from 10 AM until 1 PM. The program will be run by Pegasus Farm, a highly-regarded agency, which has provided similar treatment to children. Because it is probably not a good idea to have the children and PTSD patients in the same location, a beautiful horse farm was purchased in Louisville with funds raised through grants from Stark County foundations. In addition, Walsh University will be a partner providing physical and occupational therapy.
As great as this program is, the story behind it is even better. Our district submitted the original grant with another agency as a partner in 2014. Unfortunately, after we received the grant and purchased the equipment, an audit of the other agency found structural deficiencies in their buildings, which they could not afford to fix. Others might have returned the equipment and funds, but Rotarians do not give up easily. Led by PDG Meena Patel, Mike Pierce (Plain Twp), Ron Manse(Perry), Dan Fuline (Canton), PDG Phil Mariola and more than a dozen other Rotarians, they found another and even stronger partner agency (Pegasus Farm), they identified an incredible property for the program and raised money to lease the property so that it would not be sold to someone else, and then they worked with Pegasus and several Foundations to raise over one million dollars to purchase the farm and to run it for the next several years.
A theme of my talk to clubs is that Rotarians have a well-deserved reputation for getting things done. We see a problem, we find a solution, and we make it happen. In this case, we had to solve several unanticipated problems, but we did, and the result is a groundbreaking project to help our vets and first responders, which will serve as a model for program all over the country. This is just one of many reasons why I am proud to be a Rotarian and proud to call the many people who worked on this project friends and colleagues.

Upcoming Events

District Rotarians have indicated they would like to be aware of Rotary activities throughout the District in order to be supportive.  This is your chance to let everyone know about your upcoming events/projects.  Please submit your information to Lauri at or 330-452-2882.

This calendar is there for you.  It is easy to add your event.
If you have administrative access to your website, please follow these directions.  If you do not have administrative access, contact Lauri at or at 330-452-2882.
On the website:
  • Go to Administration
  • On the left go to Events
  • Go to Event Planner
  • Insert your information
District 6650 Clubs Making a Difference
District Rotary Foundation
Local Grants UPDATE Checks were mailed to Club Presidents in mid-August. If you have not received your funds, please let me know. Keep me informed of progress and send pictures of the final project for the website
Global Grants UPDATE - As we begin a new Rotary year, the District Rotary Foundation Committee has approved Global Grant funds for several international club projects in our District.
Please consider supporting one or several of these projects ‘Doing Good in the World’. Individual donors and clubs will receive tax-deductible receipts. Donations count toward Paul Harris Fellow recognition.

Do You Know a Student Who May Be Interested in Being an Outbound Exchange Student?
The first overnighter of the Youth Exchange Year was conducted on August 19-20, at Camp Stambaugh, in Canfield.  We welcomed 17 Inbound Exchange Students to District 6650, provided orientation, processed paperwork, and introduced them to their fellow Inbound students for the 2017-2018 year.  The next overnighter will be sponsored by the Sugarcreek Club on September 30 – October 1. 

We are also starting to recruit for the 2018-2019 Outbound class.  Applications may be accessed and completed at District 6650’s Youth Exchange website.  Applications are due by October 1.  We will be conducting interviews, for the Outbound class, on December 3 and 10 at Louisville High School.  If you would like someone from Youth Exchange to visit your school and discuss the Outbound Program, please contact Bill Wood (330) 284-4779 or Aletha Carver (330) 614-1367.  
Kampala Rotary Meeting
The following email was received from Professor Lou Picard and Pauline Greenlick (his wife)  who attended the Rotary Club of Kampala, Uganda.
Lou, Victoria and I traveled into Kampala, Uganda today to attend the Kampala Rotary meeting at noon.  It was quite a moving experience as the Rotary members were honoring the late International President Sam Owori.  There were 85 members present which filled the entire room and they all were overcome with grief and sadness.  
We were graciously received by Godfrey who was most welcoming.  We were still allowed to speak, though briefly, because they had planned  a tribute to Sam Owori.  We were the first speakers.  Lou introduced himself and mentioned Warren, Ohio Rotary and then Victoria spoke as well.  following their speeches, about 10 members spoke about their relationship with Sam.  They mentioned how humble a man he was and devoted to his Rotarian vision and work.  I so regret I never met him.
To read this article in full, click on the "Read More" tab below.
Open House - The Military Family Center
The Military Family Center
5495 Meese Road, Louisville, Ohio
The collaborative effort of Rotary District 6650, Pegasus Farm and Walsh University
Saturday, September 23, 2017 from 10:00 - 1:00 pm
World Polio
There are new materials available on to support the End Polio Now: Countdown to History campaign.

World Polio Day is set for  24 October 2017

Get ready for our 5th annual World Polio Day event, co-hosted with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. We will stream live from Gates Foundation headquarters in Seattle, Washington to bring together more than 50,000 viewers around the world. Celebrities and global health experts will join us to share our progress on the road to polio eradication. Additional information and support materials are available at
To reach our goal of $50 Million and to take advantage of Gates 3 to 1 match, each club is being asked to donate $1500 toward our end game.
Thank You
PDG Geoff Goll
Water Project through Global Grant

The following update on the water project for Oholi, Maharashtra, Inidia has been provided by PDG Meena Patel.  

This Rotary Global Grant provided funds for the installation of a water well, purchase of machinery and pipelines to help transport water to individual homes in the Oholi Village.

Our District contributed $8,000.00 of our DDF for this project which was completed in record time.  The total cost of this project came to $33,000.00.

Click on the "Read More" tab below to view the update on this water project.


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