Action for Change: Supporting Local Organizations to Aid Children in Crises with Kiana Pollard

This is the meeting for the week of February 5, 2018 through February 11, 2018

This Meeting at a Glance:
Program: Action for Change: Supporting Local Organizations to Aid Children in Crises with Kiana Pollard
Program Description: Action for Change is an initiative that connects a local non-profit organization called the International Children’s Action Network (ICAN) to the students at Nagoya International School. ICAN provides necessities to children living in areas afflicted by war and poverty such in Yemen and areas in the Philippines. By encouraging students to help fundraise and join educational activities, the club aims to support ICAN and spread awareness about global issues. We create opportunities for students to take action so that we can create a positive change in the lives of the children we support. Action for Change hopes to inspire students to become the change they wish to see in the world.
Speaker: Kiana Pollard, full-time student & Founder of the Action for Change Initiative

Is this your first time to visit us? If so, welcome to our weekly online meeting! To complete our meeting, please continue reading from here to the bottom of this page. 

Each Monday our week’s meeting is posted early in the morning, U.S. Pacific Time. These meetings are designed so that you can read and watch what we post anytime during the week. The entire meeting takes about 60 minutes to complete, with the video conference recording of the program being the bulk of the time.

Note that you can easily read this meeting with your favorite device, so feel free to take our meeting on the go with you; read it while on public transit, waiting in line for coffee, or even at the park! Please also make sure to complete the attendance form at the bottom and leave a comment. Enjoy!

Welcome to the Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley!

Here’s a message from President Stephen:

Hello E-Club Rotarians,
Last week every club member should have received an email from me regarding club position nominations! If you did not receive that email please contact me directly and I will see that you get it immediately. Now that we are in the process of nominating our club leaders for Andrew’s Presidency year, I would like to encourage everyone to take some time to look at the nomination list from the email I sent out and submit your nominations before the deadline on 11:59 PSTFriday, February 9th.

Yours in service,

Stephen Zhou, President
Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley

Weekly Funny with the Lady of Laughter (LOL)

We believe laughter is an important part of life, and we should all make time to laugh a little. This segment of our meeting is meant to tickle you just enough. These funnies are curated by member Yvonne Kwan, our “Lady of Laughter!”

From Yvonne: “This past Sunday was Superbowl Sunday in the US, so here are some football jokes that will score a chuckle.”

Why did the football coach go to the bank?
To get his quarter back.

Why didn’t the dog want to play football?
Because it was a boxer.

What do you get when you cross a quarterback with a carpet?
A throw rug.


Weekly Inspiration: Meet the Man Bringing Hip-Hop to the Deaf

Every week we start our meetings with a short video highlighting innovation, inspiration, entrepreneurship, or social change. This week we are featuring a video from Great Big Story about entrepreneurship in a unique way.

Although he’s had profound hearing loss his entire life, Matt Maxey didn’t learn to sign until he was 18 years old. He began to practice his ASL by signing along to the lyrics of his favorite artists and uploading videos to YouTube. Now, as the CEO and founder of DEAFinitely Dope, he’s translating hip-hop music alongside artists like Chance the Rapper and D.R.A.M.

Last week we shared an inspiration video about a taxi service for disabled people. This week we just shared a video about an entrepreneur helping bring an experience to an underserved group of people. What great ways do you see entrepreneurship being able to help underserved groups in your community?

Coffee with a Rotarian

It’s back! Coffee with a Rotarian is one of our member initiatives where every month we pair Rotarians and ask them to take an hour out of their busy schedules to have a 1 on 1 chat with their fellow Rotarian. These coffee sessions happen in-person over coffee, online over coffee, and everywhere in-between. In this segment, we feature some of the stories we’ve heard from Rotarians and what they’ve learned about their fellow members.

In this week’s Coffee with a Rotarian featured story, we’re sharing a submission from member Rushton Hurley from California, USA. Rushton was paired with member Roger Plested from Canada.

Here’s what Rushton learned about Roger:

Related Links to the Coffee with a Rotarian video:

Thanks for sharing, Rushton!

Special thanks to member Tzviatko Chiderov for coordinating our Coffee with a Rotarian sessions! Are you a member and interested in joining in these coffee sessions? Reach out to Tzviatko at [email protected] or to President Stephen at [email protected]

For Members Only: Updates

This segment of the meeting is dedicated to our club members. This section includes announcements and new initiatives. Guests, you are welcome to read this section or just skip it.

Final Opportunity to Submit Your Photo for The Rotarian Magazine’s Annual Photo Contest!

Members and visiting Rotarians, the next few days is your final opportunity to enter into The Rotarian Magazine’s annual photo contest! They have been running this photo contest annually for 90 years, and your photo could be one of the winners! A couple of years ago, our own club member and resident photo guru, Keith Marsh, was the winner of the photo contest! His winning photo is featured right above. A gorgeous composition. Learn more about The Rotarian’s photo contest and also apply by clicking here to visit the Rotary website. Deadline is February 15, 2018!

Club officer elections for the 2018-2019 Rotary year are out! Please check your emails!

Dear members. Elections for the 2018-2019 Rotary Year (July 1 to June 30) has begun! We are currently in nominations for a President-nominee (to serve as President-elect starting July 1, 2018 and then as President on July 1, 2019), a Secretary, a Treasurer, and a Director (note: Directors serve 3-year terms). President Stephen and President-elect Andrew are coordinating the election. Members, if you did not receive an email from President Stephen, please reach out to him at [email protected]

Past Member Announcements:

  • Member namebadges delayed but will be shipped out in February
  • Active members now have [email protected] email forwarders! Your forwarder should be your full first name plus the first initial of your last name. Emails going to your email will be forwarded automatically to the email you have on file with our club. If you want your email forwarder changed to a different variation of your name, please email Webmaster Mitty at [email protected]
  • Members Only Facebook Group: If you haven’t joined our members-only Facebook Group, consider joining! Request an invitation from [email protected]
  • Service Blotter Submissions: Click here to fill out The Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley Service Survey

Our Events & Projects

We hold our meetings online, but we hold regular service projects and social events in the Silicon Valley every month! This section is updated every week with our upcoming events. We welcome guests to all of our events and service projects listed here.

Also be sure to join our Meetup Group for automatic calendar updates and to RSVP for our events! These are open to all guests as well!

Rotary E-Club of Silicon Valley

Fremont, CA
140 Members & Guests

Calling all service-minded entrepreneurs, foodies, and community leaders! This group is for anyone interested in innovation, community service, education, business networking,…

Check out this Meetup Group →

Upcoming Events:

All times are Pacific Time! (San Francisco time)

THIS WEEK: Saturday, February 10, 2018 – Our Club’s Annual Rotary Youth Speech Contest in San Jose

This Sunday, we will be hosting our club level speech contest for District 5170’s Richard D. King Annual Youth Speech Contest. This contest is designed to encourage high school students to build their public speaking skills while also becoming more immersed in the good of Rotary. We will be hosting our club’s speech contest on Sunday, February 10 at 3PM at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library on the San Jose State University campus. For those who are abroad, we will also be recording the speech contest live and posting it as an upcoming meeting just as we would with any other recorded program. Anyone who is interested in attending or being a judge for the speech contest can email Yvonne at [email protected]

Other Upcoming Club Events:

  • New dates coming soon. Have a suggestion? Let us know!

More events coming soon! All events are open to guests, unless otherwise mentioned. Feel free to join us! If you ever have questions, please email [email protected]

What would you like to do?

Hey Members! What would you like to do? We’re working on putting together some exciting socials and impactful service projects for our upcoming quarter’s event calendar. Let us know what you want to do by posting in our members only Facebook Group (if you don’t have access, please request it with Webmaster Mitty). Remember, you’re only taking advantage of the full impact of Rotary when you’re stepping up to get involved.

Happy Dollars: Do Good by Sharing Something Good

Each week we ask our members to share stories with the club and toss in a few dollars to support our efforts. The primary goal of this section is to provide a fun way of getting to know each fellow members and guests, while giving back to a good cause.

Happy dollars is an opportunity to share something positive that has happened in your life whether it is personal or business. Think of it as your opportunity to brag a little, but also put a little bit into a karma jar. The money donated through happy dollars is put to charitable use, and the message that you leave for happy dollars will be posted in our online meeting the following week for the entire week for folks to see! (Pending that it’s appropriate!)

Last week’s happy dollar contributions went towards our club projects. Here are some of the happy dollar messages from last week:

Thank you to member Brian Liddicoat for his generous $15 donation! Brian had this to say:
“Reject your sense of injury and the injury itself disappears. – Marcus Aurelius (love this guy).

Thank you to member Rory Olsen for his generous $15 donation to ending polio through The Rotary Foundation’s Polio Plus fund. Rory had this to say:
“Construction is continuing slowly on my house. Hope for it to be done by mid-April. Please apply my gift to Polio Plus.”

Thank you all for your donations last week!

Happy dollars is also a great opportunity to share with the group about something good that has happened to you, while giving back to a great cause. Next week’s happy dollars will go back to powering our club’s projects locally and globally.

So what are you happy about? Share with us below to help with doing good around the world.

Fill out my online form.

Selected Six

Every week at the bottom of our meetings, there is a comments section for members and guests to tell us what they enjoyed about the meeting or to ask questions to the speaker. We select six comments every week from last week’s meeting to be featured during this week’s meeting.

Here are six comments selected from last week’s meeting featuring the program on Acta Non Verba: Deeds Not Words:

Member Rushton Hurley (California, USA) had this to say:
“Loved the video about the Difa City Tour folks, and any story of those who see possibilities where others see problems. Kelly, ANV is a really impressive program. I love the orientation to healthy foods in your summer programs, and know that this is giving those kids so many ingrained lessons that will be valuable to them for many years to come. Thanks for all the heart and soul you put into it!

Guest Celine Neal (Belize) had this to say:
“I enjoyed the video about the Difa Tour amazing idea Triyono. Awesome project Kelly! I am glad you took on the intiative to bring a positive change in your community. Continue to promote a healthy environment for the children.

Member Megan Breyer (California, USA) had this to say:
“Kelly, thank you for your service to this country! And thank you for sharing your amazing work with our club. Truly inspiring!”


Member Catherine A. (California, USA) had this to say:
“Really enjoyed your presentation, Kelly. What a wonderful service project and super experience for kids. You might enjoy connecting with a former neighbor of mine, Gopal Dayaneni, at: https://www.storybasedstrat…  Thanks for your service to our country and for your enterprising dedication to inner city youth.

Member Mark Dohn (USA) had this to say:
“Kelly, having grown up a farm, I really appreciate the positive message you bring to the kids through farming. It teaches nurturing and growth, where the results of your effort can be seen. I think I’m going to have to connect with Brett and Angelea to swap some faming stories too! The story of taxis for the disable is a great example of action over policy; sometimes is better do first and then to legislate.

Member Heather Shaw (California, USA) had this to say:
“Kelly I really appreciate this project on so many levels. Besides the savings program and brighter future outlook for your participants, you are supplying them with valuable nutrition that so many youth do not get. Also they will actually recognize what real food looks like and have the skills to know how to prepare it. Thanks for sharing your gifts to benefit our youth!”

Be sure to leave a comment at the end of this week’s meeting after you watch the program below, and perhaps you’ll see your comment featured next week!

Program: Action for Change – Supporting Local Organizations to Aid Children in Crises

Every week we bring to you a new program on innovation, education, technology, and humanitarian service. This week our guest speaker is Kiana Pollard, a student in Japan who founded Action for Change, an initiative to help support local organizations in aiding children in crises.

Kiana Pollard is a Grade 11 Diploma Programme student at Nagoya International School. She was inspired to create Action for Change the following year after joining a Skype conference with former street children in the Philippines at the office of a local NPO called ICAN. She remembers vividly how the children expressed their dreams with bright smiles on their faces and were struck by the impact that the organization has had on their futures. Knowing that she could do something to help, she started small, by collecting unused postcard stamps to raise money. Afterwards, she volunteered at fundraisers and built connections with the interns at ICAN as well as other volunteers. When entering her junior year of high school, Kiana was set on starting a club that could inspire others just as ICAN had inspired her. That idea materialized into Action for Change. She has many hopes for this service club and feels genuinely excited about the possibilities.

Members and guests, please welcome Kiana to our meeting!

Related Links:

Share with us your thoughts in the comments at the bottom of this meeting page! If you have questions for Kiana, feel free to ask in the comments!

Upcoming Program Schedule

All of our guest speakers and programs are recorded live online over Zoom video conference. We welcome members and guests to join us in one of these upcoming recordings. Recordings are approximately 30 minutes long and are subject to change without notice.

Upcoming Recordings:

If you would like to join us for any of the live recordings, you are welcome to join us. Our online video conference room link for these recordings is always Please note the timezone for all recordings are listed for San Francisco, California, USA time (Pacific Time).

You’re Almost Done! One last thing: The Attendance Survey…

Thanks for reading and watching this week’s meeting. You have two last things to do before you’re done. First, we have a very short attendance survey below for you to fill out to record your attendance.

Visiting Rotarians, this is how you can get an email receipt to pass along to your club’s secretary as proof that you’ve attended our meeting if you need it for makeups.

Non-Rotarian Guests, we would love to see who is dropping by our meetings! This part is optional for you. If you think you may want to join our eClub at some point in the future, we would strongly recommend you fill out the attendance form as it will improve your chances of success for your membership application.

More importantly, for all members and guests — we strongly recommend and ask that you leave a comment below in our comments area below. Tell us how you enjoyed the program. Ask this week’s speaker any questions you might have. Or just stop by and say hello and tell us where you’re from!

Fill out my online form.
  • Tzviatko Chiderov

    I really enjoyed the Matt Maxey video.
    And wow, Kiana, you seem like such an authentically nice person. Great to hear about your leadership in acting on your desire to want to do good for others.

  • Nathan Gildart

    Kiana, you’re doing wonderful things and are an impressive individual! Thank you for sharing with our club. It
    it’s a privilege to see the great things you’re doing at Nagoya International School and outside of our community. You’re a star!

    I loved the Great Big Story video as well. My grandparents sign for the deaf at their church (my brother and I unfortunately forgot how to sign after moving away from them as children).

  • Rory Olsen

    Kiana, thank you for a great program and for what you are doing.

  • Keith Marsh

    Kiana, it was wonderful to hear about the great work you are doing. We need more young people like you to be getting involved in important world issues. I also loved the Matt Maxey video. Amazing kids.

  • Catherine A

    Kiana I was inspired by your dedication and kindness in efforts to aid children in crisis. Your talk reminded me of my favorite charitable effort, Liter of Light, which Illac Diaz developed as a student in the Philippines. Liter of Light began as a solar means to light the homes of the poor after the last major hurricane, using recyled liter soda bottles. Now, Liter of Light and Liter of Light at Night have gone worldwide, with chapters in the USA: (More at: )
    Kudos to Keith Marsh for his beautiful photography, to Rushton for the lively CWR segment and to our team for re-posting the Great Big Story Matt Maxey “DEAFinitely Dope” video.

  • Rebecca

    You are such an inspiring leader Kiana, with wisdom and insight beyond your years! It was such a pleasure to learn more about Action for Change and ICAN and the difference these initiatives are making in the world. Subtanstial synergies with Interact, Rotaract and Rotary and given you’re following a similar membership based model it may be worth checking out some of the resources available on the Rotary International website. All the best with your quest to make a positive impact in the world!

  • Celine Neal

    Matt I love your drive and what you are doing for the deaf community.
    Kianna, you remind me of when I started Rotaract in 2013. I was so intimated being the youngest in the club. But the more meetings I attended the closer I became with my members. I can imagine how great you feel after completing a fundraiser or community service. Continue the great work you are doing and no matter how small you think your work is, always remember it’s the impact that counts. I have encouraged rotaractors and prospects to always focus on how you can impact a person. That is what really matters. When you see a smile and a thank you through there eyes is when you feel you really accomplish something. Trust me you will never forget that experience. If you ever want to help in another country to experience a project, you can join our project name Adopt a village whereby we have sponsored around 80 children to attend elementary school and alomg with school supplies. We don’t do high school as it is more costly for us. So we assist them with a start to an education.

  • Andrew Taw

    Kiana, this is amazing! I’m certain your club will grow as you continue to do the cool work you do!

  • Kiana, you inspire us! Also loved the video about Matt Maxey and how he brings hip-hop to deaf culture. Great story.

  • BDL

    Kiana, you’re amazing. I don’t think I had it this together until I was about 40.
    This video was really a lot of fun to watch. It would be great to see a video from Nathan taking us around his school. I love me some Nagoya.

  • Steven Shags Shagrin

    What an outstanding program, Kiana! Thanks for sharing the story with us.

  • Amazing. Thanks for sharing

  • Brett Sham

    Kiana, thanks for sharing your fantastic story! Great stuff on seeing the opportunity and the need and taking the initiative. I hope that one day you become part of the Rotary family.

    I love your passion and drive in getting the group started. How are you preparing for when you leave the school for the club continuing to do its good work?

  • Richard Knaggs

    How incredibly innovative is Matt Maxey. We have five students in our school who have come up with an innovative design and process for water transport and storage for our rural communities and with the current drought in Cape Town this now applies to everyone. It is fantastic when entrepreneurship affects the entire community and has potential to affect the world. You are an inspiration Kiana, keep up the great work for as small as it may seem to you it is HUGE for those you are helping. As the very good man, Srini Swaminathan, I know says, “If you have nothing, then something is everything!”.

  • john lozano

    Kiana, thanks for your presentation. Keep up the great work and look forward to hearing more about future of your program.

  • Raquel D. Juncal

    Kiana, thanks for sharing your story with us! Fantastic program!

  • This meeting was great not only for Kiana’s dedication and results but also the interaction with the attendees. The flow of ideas and interacting may stimulate more results from this project. Awesome and the sign language video was great too. I love the recent focus on disabilities

  • Mark Dohn

    Another amazing video concerning accessibility! I believe this shows how through art, people with disabilities can go beyond getting access and equity to the playing field and instead redefine the playing field.
    Kiana, thank you for sharing your story! What I see is that you are working towards is not creating a club at the school, but fundamentally changing the culture. This is no small feat and takes time and a clear vision through ICAN you have everything you need. (Having that Gildart guy available is pretty cool too!)


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Copyright Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley 2015-2017, located in Rotary District 5170 in the sunny Silicon Valley of California, USA. Rotary International club #86428. Inquiries can be sent to [email protected]

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