This Meeting’s Highlights
- Speaker: Peggy Pollard and Godfrey Dembe Kasozi
- Program: Clean Food, Clean Water Connect Cultures through Rotary, UCSC and Sister Cities
- Meeting for the week of May 4th to 10th, 2015
And it’s already May! Is it just me, or is this year zipping by quickly?
It turns out that there are lots of things that can happen quickly. The chance to say something kind to someone else at a moment when that person needs it can come and go in an instant.
Saying something that hurts someone else is also one of those things that sometimes happens before we think through what we mean, or even before fully understanding what that person meant in an earlier message or comment.
Let’s strive to take every opportunity to build up others this week, remembering that they may be facing challenges we don’t see.
Guests, we welcome your comments, as well, and ask that you consider contributing the cost of a meal to the service projects our club is putting in motion. Feel free to use our donation system for Happy Dollars, or you can mail a check made out to the Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley to our treasurer: ℅ Allen Thompson, 13500 Cascade Ct., Bakersfield CA 93314.
The Power of Images
Last weekend in Santa Clara was the annual Relay for Life event benefiting cancer research, awareness, and patient care. My wife Tabitha and I take part in this every year, and enjoy the chance to connect with friends, encourage those battling the disease, and remember those we’ve lost. This year we added names to our team’s poster honoring a number of our club’s members and their families.
“Cancer never sleeps, so neither will we.” In Relay, each team tries to have someone on the track for the entire 24-hour time the event goes. At the opening, the first lap is called the Survivors Lap, and cheering those battling cancer who take part (those in the purple shirts) is a special moment for the event. I can never hold back tears when I see the children in the survivor shirts.
And now, a bonus image for this week!
from Camera Czar Keith Marsh:
Here are a few panoramas I took in Yosemite a few years ago from various vantage points. I took these the old fashioned way with my DSLR. Using a tripod, I take 4-8 photos overlapping by 1/3. All of my settings are set to manual, including the focus. Avoid using a wide-angle lens because of the distortion. In Photoshop, I use the photo merge feature to combine the images. To make the combined image, I bring each image into a new file as a layer and apply “layer styles” like drop shadows for effect.
Well done, Keith!
Ominous title to a section, no?
Actually, this is just your notice that next week we are asking our members and guests to help judge a service video competition. You’ll be given a link to a set of short videos (averaging about two minutes) created by students telling of the work of nonprofit organizations in their communities. Please reserve an extra twenty minutes or so to help with this effort.
Do you start each day with a positive message? If this is something you are striving to do, Jessica is your role model.
What We Do
Rotary International President Gary C.K. Huang sent a note out last week noting that one way Rotarians can support the relief efforts following the terrible disaster in Nepal is to donate to Rotary’s partner, ShelterBox, which “provides emergency shelter and vital supplies to support communities around the world overwhelmed by disaster and humanitarian crisis.” Find them at this link.
Helping in Sri Lanka
You may recall the great program from François Tessier about his Ayubowan Project to help the poor in Sri Lanka. We have an update on his efforts:
An NGO called Barefoot Doctor is going to take Phase 1 of the Ayubowan Project under its umbrella since it is in accordance with its mission. This will allow doing the first mission in Sri Lanka in November 2015 and also putting together a media kit to help fundraise for a larger-scale project in the future. I am now targeting opening a permanent clinic, or more…
Way to go, François!
Kudos to Mitty
Rotary promoted an article published last year in its online features last week. Why mention this? The article tells about our own Mitty Chang, who was our presenter last week! If you are curious why it doesn’t mention our club, just remember that when the original version was published, we weren’t around. Catch the full article here. Very cool, Mitty!
You can find our district governor’s April newsletter here.
On Friday, May 8, from 5-8 pm at the Rowell Ranch Rodeo Park, the Rotary Club of Castro Valley is having its annual chili cook off. If you make a mean chili and want to take part, you could with the top prize of $500! To get involved, visit the club’s website (click on the chili cook off link on the right) and then contact event chair Randy Vanderbilt. Money raised goes to support the club’s community projects.
eClub Social for May, Part 1
Up for a linner? A dunch? [Shags suggests, “dunner.”] I’m not sure what to call a good eating gig that happens in the mid-afternoon, but whatever it’s called, we’re going to do one. On Saturday, May 9th, a group of us will gather at the Drake’s Brewery Tap Room in San Leandro. You can drop by anytime between 1:30 and 4:00. Find us at 1933 Davis St, San Leandro, CA 94577; they are directly to the right of the Walmart entrance, a little bit hidden next to the truck unloading/loading. It will help us if you RSVP, of course. Do so by writing webmaster Mitty Chang at [email protected] or member Stephen Zhou at [email protected].
The Rotary Club of Oakland was established in 1909, and is older than all other Rotary clubs except The Rotary Club of Chicago (the first club, 1905) and The Rotary Club of San Francisco (the second, 1908). They’re a fun and active crowd, and are gathering a group to go to an A’s game the evening of Monday, May 11th. If you’d like to join in, send a note to Tom Limon ([email protected]) to see if there are still slots left. You can get more info at this page. They will also be doing a Mount Whitney hike in late July, and for that gig, see this page on their site.
Top Chef of Dublin
The Rotary Club of Dublin (California, not Ireland), has its annual fundraiser the evening of May 17th. Taste delicious food, sample fine wines, and enjoy craft beers at this gig supporting the club’s effort to help Eric’s Corner, a resource for education regarding epilepsy. Learn more at the Top Chef of Dublin website.
eClub Social for May, Part 2
There is the possibility that a group of us will go to the San Jose Earthquakes soccer match on Sunday the 24th. If that’s of interest to you, send an email to Webmaster Mitty ([email protected]). We hope to have enough of us involved to score some kind of discount. Stay tuned for more details!
Our First Fundraiser
Thanks to the efforts of member Chris Cochrane and his team, we are launching our first fundraiser this week! As you’d guess, we take a rather tech-centric approach to making it happen.
Below are two very short videos designed to spread the word about our club. With every view for each video, as measured by YouTube’s views counter, we earn half a penny, up to $5000 for a million views.
That means it’s time to share these links via Facebook, Twitter, email, and anything else for which you have an audience. Let’s see how quickly we can generate a million views!
SiliconValleyRotary Hangout (https://youtu.be/Ua4po716cjs)
Chris, a big thanks to you, the PR committee, and your team for putting these together!
The World of Rotary
There are a number of powerful successes happening with microfinance around the world. Those who know about this effort tend to think of loans in the developing world, but with a little creativity and a lot of engagement, it can happen in the U.S., as well.
A group of Rotarians in the Detroit area decided to make something happen there, and the Launch Detroit team funded thirteen entrepreneurs, starting with a strong educational collaboration in the fall of 2013. The full story is a powerful one, and reminds us that Rotarians can make things happen even in places others might have given up on.
Have you dedicated some time to helping others in the last week, or since the last time you filled out the survey below? If so, let us know!
Member Heather Shaw was impressed by the video in last week’s meeting about the Rotary PlayGarden spearheaded by the San Jose Rotary Club:
member Heather Shaw ($15):
[For the] Annual fund: Looking forward to making an impact in our community like San Jose did.
Treasurer Allen has good news, as well.
member Allen Thompson ($4):
For our grandson, who recently is two years old, $2, and for the number 2 grandchild, who is expected in October of this year, another $2. These are Happy Dollars!!
A Little Humor
from Membership Chair Shags Shagrin:
Things to Remember
- Love is grand; divorce is at least a hundred grand.
- Time may be a great healer, but it’s also a lousy beautician.
- Remember: amateurs built the ark, professionals built the Titanic.
- Talk is cheap because supply exceeds demand.
- Conscience is what hurts when everything else feels so good.
- An optimist thinks that this is the best possible world. A pessimist fears that this is true.
- Even if you are on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just stand there.
- My inferiority complex is not as good as yours is.
- I’m having an out-of-money experience.
- It’s frustrating when you know all the answers, but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.
- You’re getting old when you get the same sensation from a rocking chair that you once got from a roller coaster.
- Brain cells come and brain cells go, but fat cells live forever.
Ready to learn a little something? This week, a simple way to check the weather forecast:
Selected Comments from Last Week
Each week we ask all who attend to share their thoughts in the Disqus section at the bottom of this page. What? You don’t have time to leave a thought? That’s a little like being asked a question, looking at the questioner, then turning and walking away, you know. Don’t bring that bad karma on yourself. 🙂
member John Lozano (California, USA)
Mitty, great presentation. As a new member of Rotary, I appreciate your history lesson on Rotaract. Also, I like your challenge and explanation to why this is so important as a member of Rotary. The cycle is a great reminder for me to reflect on my service and leadership experiences and make this club part of my daily life. I am impressed with your commitment to service and many talents. Keep up the great work.
member Yvonne Kwan (California, USA)
Awesome presentation! I love the Rotary history bit at the beginning (I’m a sucker for trivia), and I definitely learned new things. As another former Interactor who moved to Rotaract and ultimately to Rotary, I know the importance of having mentors in the Rotary family. The positive influences and experiences are what powers everyone through life, and Rotarians can definitely be that positive energy for young professionals and leaders.
member Shags Shagrin (California, USA)
Mitty – you are on your way to a great life history with Rotary! No Interact where I lived when in high school, and Rotaract came to U of Miami (Go ‘Canes!) in my junior year. Ten out of 26 years is impressive!! Fun history of young adults and Rotary’s connection – things I didn’t know. More importantly is the sharing of your insight into how we can bring all generations into the Rotary World for the benefit of all. An excellent adaptation of Campbell’s work. Let’s work on applying this knowledge to the growth of our eClub. And I’m shocked that only recently there was a “PETS” for Rotaract. We try to get Interact leaders to RYLA, so it’s a natural next step. I’ll share this meeting with my terra District where I reside, 5160. Let’s talk about eCSV as the place to get online recorded and live leadership training for Rotaracters. Also, there is no e-Interact Club yet. Hmmmmm… And the James Dean photo to your back right is awesome – love to hear the story behind that! Keep on keepin’ on, Mitty – vroom vroom ssshhhhhhh!!!
member Manju Ramachandran (California, USA)
Mitty, I am so inspired by your passion and simple presentation. That presentation not only highlights the emotional life cycle of a Rotarian but definitely of anyone entering the nonprofit world and engaging in work that really benefits others. I would love a copy of the presentation please. Taking it a step further, I’d love to see if we can incorporate/start a Rotaract club at the India Community Center in Milpitas. I’d love to cultivate that type of mentorship. We have so many programs that a rotaract wanting to make a difference right here can impact either in person or even virtually. Let’s email/talk!
member Chris Cochrane (Ontario, Canada)
Mitty …our club’s own James Dean. (I love his picture behind you in your recording). Excellent background on Rotaract. Personally I learned much. Keith, another stunner of a picture ….
member Andrew Taw (California, USA)
Thank you Mitty for being my mentor in the Rotary family! Great presentation! It’d be cool for this club to sponsor a Rotaract E-Club and for us to start a mentorship program for Rotaract members. This could be a way for us to recruit Rotaractors who are in more transient populations like community colleges and maintain a more cohesive journey into Rotary after they transfer.
member Rushton Hurley (California, USA)
Given membership numbers in North America, Rotary has had a less-than-optimal record here of bringing younger leaders into the organization. Rotaract is clearly the natural target for helping these young, service-oriented people into clubs in order to help them better develop their leadership skills, connect with others in the community, and foster ever-bolder ideas on how we can address the problems we face. Mitty, your vision for Every Rotaractor, Every Rotarian is a winning one!
member Mitty Chang (California, USA)
Everyone who is going to be in the Bay Area on May 9th – you are all welcome to join us at our eClub’s monthly social meet-up! It was mentioned in the meeting under the events section.
We’ll be at Drake’s Brewery in San Leandro starting at 1:30 PM oN Saturday, May 9th! Come join us anytime from 1:30 PM to 4 PM! All guests are welcome. You don’t need to be a member to hang out with us! Just looking for the Rotary Sign that will be sitting on a table. 🙂
This Week’s Program
In what was easily the most internationally-attended program we’ve recorded yet, we have for you this week Peggy Pollard and Godfrey Dembe Kasozi.
Pollard and Kasozi work to support the Santa Cruz (California) – Kasese (Uganda) Sister City relationship, and today you’ll learn about that dynamic effort on both sides of the globe.
Godfrey Dembe Kasozi graduated 1999 from the organic farming internship of the CASFS (Center for AgroEcology and Sustainable Food Systems), part of the University of California Santa Cruz.
He is the founding director of CETRUD, the Centre for Environment Technology and Rural Development in Kasese where he teaches sustainable agriculture to 2,000 farmers a year. He also sends 200 orphans to school, and trains students in microfinance entrepreneurship, HIV/AIDS education, and rural technology. CETRUD has five staff and a board of five directors.
Kasozi has a B.S. In Agriculture from Kampala, Uganda; a Masters Equivalent in Environmental Technology from Dresden University, Germany; certificates in Sustainable Agriculture; and he has been sponsored by United Nations, UNICEF, Firelight Foundation.
Peggy Pollard is member of the Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary Club, is staff of Intenational Students Inc. at the University of California Santa Cruz. Peggy serves as Chair of Santa Cruz Sister Cities and its Kasese, Uganda, subcommittee. She is also President of the UCSC University Interfaith Council and teaches ballroom dance. She will be leading the first Sister City and Rotary delegation to Kasese, Uganda Aug 24 – Sep 6, 2015.
Godfrey Kasozi ([email protected]) would love to hear from you, and welcome you as a visitor to CETRUD educational center for sustainable agriculture, rural technology and economic development work in Kasese, Uganda. You can stay at their inn and visit CETRUD’s demonstration farm.
You can take a few minutes to view the 2013 interview on Community Television of the Kasese Sister City Mayoral Delegation and this 3-minute video of another UK Rotary Club’s delegation to Kasese, which won first place in Rotary Internationals Friendship Exchange video contest.