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Merikit Uganda Rotary Global Grant – Water!

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Kathy Napier, member of the Rotary Club of Warren County, presented “Uganda 2019” a voyage to Africa with George Karnes, Ron Napier, Beth Waller, Liz Gibbs, and other Rotary International Rotarians. The main purpose of the trip was to attend the dedication of the Sam F. Owori Memorial Wash Global Grant Project.

The idea of a project in Uganda began at the Governor’s training, where 30 rising district governors from Zone 29 and 30 met and decided on a project to honor the incoming Rotary International President, Sam Owori, who was from Uganda. Sam, who had been elected to serve as president of Rotary International in 2018-19, would have been the second African Rotary member, and the first Ugandan, to hold that office. The idea was to construct a well for a school in Uganda to honor Sam. And George, as the incoming District Governor for District 7570, was put in charge of obtaining a global grant for this purpose. Sam was thrilled at the idea of the project.

Unfortunately, after surgery, Sam died, and it looked like the project would pass with him. There was a groundswell of support for a project in Uganda to honor Sam’s memory and the proposed project in Merikit. George expanded plans for the original project to bring a much larger water system to Merikit, and enlisted the aid of other Rotary Districts and Clubs, to support the larger project. As a result, more than $228,000 was raised from 42 Rotary Districts and 22 Rotary Clubs. Rotary International partnered with the Clean The World organization, and the project became the Sam F. Owori Memorial Wash Global Grant Project.

Merikit, the remote village where Sam had grown up, is a community of 4,000 people which grows to 10,000 during the day. The grant provides a solar-powered pump water system for more than 3,000 homes and the local maternity ward. On one of his visits to the village with Walter Hughes George found that the local medical clinic required the presentation of 100 liters of water during the dry season before they would allow pregnant women to enter the facility and have their babies. As a result, many babies were born on the steps of the clinic.

Also sanitation was a problem, with the lack of latrines. This all would change as a result of the grant: the new system pumps water into the huge steel water tank, which holds more than one hundred thousand liters of water. The project also provides five schools in the area with disposable toilets, and the village received two micro flush toilets. The maternity ward now has a hot shower for its patients. No longer would pregnant women deliver their babies on the steps.

The grant also provided for the training of forty-eight toilet makers, giving these craftsmen a source of income. Thirty school teachers and ten health workers have been trained as trainers, in order to improve on sanitation, health, and menstrual hygiene for girls. A water users committee has been trained and equipped to maintain, sustain, and manage the distribution system.

On October 26, 2019, a day-long ceremony was held to officially transfer the project to the villagers, with Sam’s wife Nora in attendance, along with Kathy, Ron, and George, Rotary Club members from Kampala, and Ugandan governmental officials. It was a joyous occasion and a lot of fun, culminating with everyone dancing. Kathy said that she was struck by the friendliness of all the people in Uganda. Known as “the Pearl of Africa,” Uganda is a developing country with a bright future. After presenting a brief history of the country, she noted a striking statistic about Uganda: the media age in Uganda is 16.7. Forty-six percent of the population is 14 or under; and another twenty-one percent is aged 15 to 24.

During the trip they also visited the Light Up Front Royal Academy, a school started by Beth Waller in December 2017 in the remote village of Bunyade,Uganda. It provides educational facilities for the children of the village. The school, which has an excellent reputation, now serves more than 200 children, and Beth is actively working to improve the school.

Message from Beth: “I’m so honored to be a part of the Rotary family and to witness the amazing work they are doing in Uganda, all over the world and in my own community. I’m looking forward to an even brighter future of global impact work now that I am a Rotarian and connected with fantastic like-minded individuals working together to make more of a difference on our planet.”

Finally, after the celebration, they toured the Murchison Falls National Park, where the animals were more than happy to greet and perform for visiting Rotarians.

Watch this video of the entire presentation:

Watch this video by Beth Waller and George Karnes:

For more information, please go to www.warrencountyrotary.org.

This story is a collaborative effort by Hank Ecton & Jennifer Avery.
Photo credit: Kathy Napier (picture quote by Jenspiration)

Ugandans gift local businessman with goat for providing fresh water to African village

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Phoenix Project benefits from Tattoo Raffle by OHPMC

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Last weekend on Saturday the Ohana Pride Shenandoah County held a rally to benefit the Phoenix Project. Several members gathered for a bike parade and raffle. During social distancing times, it is really difficult to host events and fundraisers that non-profits count on. Please consider your non-profits in these unusual times. Out of the box fundraising ideas are welcomed!

Watch this video to see the OHPMC crew introduction, ride, interview with Tammy Sharpe at Phoenix Project, and live raffle drawing. Thank you to everyone in the community for your support and encouragement!

Important note from Tammy: The community can help the Phoenix Project by spreading the word about their work. Their tag line is, “A communities response to domestic violence.” They are well trained and ready to help. Never hesitate to call. You can make a difference.

Phoenix Project
Office: 540-635-2302
HOTLINE: 540-635-2300
The hotline is answered 24/7

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Community Events

Annual Spring Bazaar at Skyline High School

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The Skyline High School Community Based Instruction Program (CBI) is hosting the 2nd Annual CBI Spring Bazaar in the high school cafeteria, April 4th, from 9am – 2pm! There will be many vendors participating, ranging from arts & crafts, home-based businesses to concessions, SOUPS and more.

This event benefits the Skyline High School Community Based Instruction Program (CBI). The Skyline High School CBI is designed for students that need instruction in functional and daily living skills. Community Based Instruction is educational instruction in naturally occurring community environments providing students “real life experiences”. The goal is to provide a variety of hands on learning opportunities at all age levels to help students acquire the skills to live in the world today. This fundraiser helps to raise funds for activities, field trips, and the basics to keep this program running!

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Community Events

Join the Rotary Safari Adventure 2020 Gala!

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Join us for a Rotary Safari Adventure: May 9, 2020 | 6pm – 9pm | Lord Fairfax College – Corron Center

Experience a safari-themed mystery dinner with Rotary celebrating cultures around the world. This event raises money for the Warren County Samuels Public Library. Dress in a Safari theme or evening attire. Tickets can be purchased here or from any member of the Warren County Rotary Club. Tickets are $75 per guest for dinner and cash bar to include a silent auction, live auction, 50/50, music and dancing with DJ Skyhigh and surprises!

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Community Events

The House of Hope presents Empty Bowl Supper 2020

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Empty Bowl Supper 2020 – this is a family friendly event! Enjoy gourmet soups prepared and donated by several of our local restaurants. You don’t want to miss these delicious soups and fun entertainment to benefit the House of Hope. The event will be held Thursday, March 26, from 5pm to 7pm, at the Front Royal Fire Department.

The Bowls:

With your ticket purchase, take your pick of a variety of handcrafted beautiful bowls painted just for this special event! Use it for dinner and take it home to keep. This year we have had more groups and friends of the community than ever chip in and help paint bowls with Arline Link at The Kiln Doctor/Explore Art & Clay. Thank you!

Soups by:

  • Soul Mountain
  • VinoVa
  • PaveMint
  • The Mill
  • Blue Wing Frog
  • Blue Door
  • The Apple House
  • El Maguey
  • Downtown Catering
  • Osteria

Entertainment:

  • MC for the night: Michael Williams of MDUM Chaufeur Service
  • Live Music: Passage Creek Rising
  • Maybe some face painting for kids!
  • We will have themed baskets available too. Buy raffle tickets and have a chance to win your favorite!

Tickets:

  • Tickets are available online through this Facebook event. You may also purchase at No Doubt Accounting or The Kiln Doctor.
  • Last minute kind of person? No problem! Available at the door or call 540-636-6753.
  • Adult Tickets $30.00 | Students $15.00 | Kids (6 & Under) $5

Empty Bowl Supper SPONSORSHIP:

GOLD $1,000 | SILVER $500 | BRONZE $250

We are looking for sponsors! This year we are offering an extra special benefit to GOLD sponsorship levels. A SPOTLIGHT VIDEO🎬! Jen Avery will come out and create a short video clip that will be played the night of the event and shared on social media. Really fun way to help bring awareness to both House of Hope and your business or cause.

“WE BELIEVE IN YOU!” – shout out 📣

All sponsorship levels are invited to be part of the inspiring “We Believe In You!” shout out video. This video will also be played the night of the event. In addition, Jen will bring the video to the House of Hope and show the men. What an awesome way to show community support and inspiration! Sometimes just to know someone cares is motivation enough.

Call Jen Avery, Jenspiration!, anytime to discuss: 540-683-0790


ALL FUNDS RAISED WILL BENEFIT THE HOUSE OF HOPE.

  • The House of Hope is the only residential rehabilitation program serving men in Warren County, Virginia. Opening the door to hope and housing. Learn more here.
  • House of Hope, a 501(c)(3) organization
  • If you prefer to DONATE, click here.

Thank you for your support in any way! Please like our Facebook page to stay current on Empty Bowl Supper updates and sponsor shout-outs!

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Jenspiration

Rotary Club of Warren County: Christa Shifflett presents a powerful new approach

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Christa Shifflett, from the Warren Coalition, presented a program on Wednesday, in which she laid out the need for mentoring of students under a program that the Coalition has developed. Quite often, she pointed out, there is a residual effect when young people witness violence, abuse, or any number of other traumatic events, and this has a long term bearing on their development and life. Under this development, which she referred to as ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences), the trauma follows the child throughout his or her life. According to one study on rats, this effect is found in the genes. This means that the boy or girl could even have a reaction as a result of something a parent might have suffered, as well as abuse they may have suffered or witnessed.

One of the primary needs is for mentors for these children, who are about 11 years old. The mentors would meet with the child at lunch for about an hour, one day a week. These children may have been abused or have witnessed abuse. This has had a major effect on their development as they grew up, and has short circuited many of the developmental processes that would have occurred. She compared these children to groundhogs, who, when they pop up out of their holes, look around in all directions to sense danger and make sure they are safe. These children often do the same–they are constantly looking around, often standing with their back to the wall, not willing or able to sit still in their seats, constantly moving. This is because they don’t feel safe. But often this isn’t recognized and the kids are yelled at or sent to the principal. They don’t sit still because they are constantly looking out because they sense danger or they don’t feel safe, and they are punished.


Shifflett noted that studies of the brain at age 3 for children from a nourishing environment, and kids without that type of environment, have shown quite different development. But this is not only the case with children in school situations–she works in the jail two times a week, and can see the effects on these adults who have experienced the traumas as a child, with exactly the same situation and the same results.

These effects are real. Whether they are the result of heredity, or of childhood abuse or childhood trauma, it affects life choices, actions, and health. Shifflett pointed out that as adults, many have a life expectancy 20 years less than the average. This is why it is so important to reach out to these children (as well as the adults), to let them know that someone cares, by mentoring them and letting them know that they can have a better future. As she admitted, this was an hour and a half program in 20 minutes and this write-up only scratches the surface of her presentation.

For the complete program and to learn more about Rotary Club of Warren County, please go to www.warrrencountyrotary.org.

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Warren County Middle School Interact Club Induction Ceremony

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On Tuesday, February 25, the Warren County Middle School had their Interact Club Induction Ceremony. Doug Stanley, Warren County Administrator and Club of Front Royal Rotarian, lead the ceremony by introducing the students. He noted that among these students will be tomorrow’s leaders, business professionals, doctors, lawyers and more. What a crew! Club of Front Royal President Brett Hrbek helped welcome the young Interact Club members by presenting the Interact pin with Stanley.

In conclusion, the students followed Stanley as he recited their pledge as official Interact Club members. They all promised to live by the Rotary code of conduct and remember the Rotary motto, Service Above Self. Watch the video to see the students in action:

Warren County Middle School Interact is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Front Royal, lead by teacher Jennifer Stanley.

Cute moment as Brett Hrbek pins the Interact pin on daughter Annie and steals a kiss.

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