Happenings in Rotary
PDG Sandy Mackay spoke about Rotary Foundation, the charitable arm of Rotary, and the charity to which all Rotarians belong.  The Rotary Foundation was started by the 6th President of Rotary, Arch Klumpf, who donated the net proceeds of his international convention in 1917, the sum of $26.50 to "Do Good in the World".  Through a century of prudent investment, generous donations from Rotarians and careful management of costs, the Rotary Foundation has now distributed over $3B, for projects in every corner of the world.
All Rotarians know that the eradication of Polio, is the primary job of Rotary International, and we are down to 12 cases worldwide this year.  So from a modest beginning in 1985, we are "this close" to eliminating that disease from the planet. PDG Sandy spoke about Rotary's hope that all Rotarians would donated $100 each year, to ensure that the work of the Foundation goes on.  Our club has been very generous in donations to the Foundation, and lucky to have 3 members of the Arch Klumpf Society as members.
Sandy emphasized his point about doing good in the world, a little at a time, by showing a video presentation of our clubs participation in a 4H project in India approx 10 years ago.  The video can be seen at https://vimeo.com/17165881 . This project is one that our club is very proud of and continues to be a model for International projects with the Foundation.
Sandy spoke of his wish to use that model to work more closely with our own First Nations communities, to build some understand and rapport with them.
Sandy completed his talk by encouraging all Rotarians to consider the Rotary Foundation as their charity of choice, to the extent that they each can on an individual basis and thanked all of the club for their support over the last century.  A number of questions were asked and answered, and Sandy was thanked by President Karen.
District Governor Rick Istead was in attendance for his annual club visit and was introduced by Assistant Governor Dave Panabaker. DG Rick started his speech by stating Rotary is the oldest and largest service club in the world and has been Making a Difference in the World for 112 years. He also congratulated our Club for being around since 1918 and looked forward to helping us celebrate our 100th Anniversary in June 2018. DG Rick highlighted some of Rotary's achievements, in particular our fight to end polio through our Polio Plus campaign. In 1985 when Rotary set out to eradicate polio there were 350,00 case of polio in the world, today there are 12 cases in 2 countries and we are "that close" to ending this terrible disease. Rick related a story that when the idea of eradicating polio was first proposed, people said it couldn't be done.  His comment was never tell a Rotarian it can't be done.
DG Rick when on to discuss of some of the initiatives being undertaken at the district level. Last year district conducted a Member Survey which was completed by 40% of the district membership. Feedback from this survey was very valuable and the District Executive are working on strategies and actions to  address issues raised. He also reiterated that District Committees are there to serve the local clubs. Rick then touched on the issue of membership and pointed out the fact that Rotary's biggest problem is not recruiting members rather retaining them. RI and District are working on strategies to allow more flexibility in clubs to keep members engaged and appreciated.  
Rick then turned to a discussion of The Rotary Foundation (TRF). First of all, he thank our club for being a District 5360 leader in supporting the  Rotary Foundation.  He encouraged more Rotarian to make TRF their charity of choice 'To Do Good in the World'.  In 2016, The Rotary Foundation was rated the #1 Foundation in the world and for the past 8 years has received a Top 4 Star rating from Charity Navigator. 97% of money donated to TRF goes to Rotary projects, with 50% going to Global Grants and the other 50% coming back to our District to be allocated through a variety of District Grants. 
In closing DG Rick thank Rotarians for donating their Time, Treasure and Talent to Doing Good in the World. He then suggested we consider registering for the District Conference in Calgary in May and the International Conference in Toronto in June. Apparently the RI Conference in Toronto is closest it will be until 2025 when it will be held in Calgary.
President Karen thanked DG Rick by presenting him with one of our Medalta coffee mugs.
The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed Chris Christie to the meeting today, to provide an update on the activities of the Community Foundation of Southeastern Alberta.  Chris began by congratulating the club on our Centennial, this year is the 25th anniversary of the Community Foundation.  Chris started in February of this year, and made a point to mention that the previous ED Mike is no relation, but she now has him on speed dial to try to catch up to all the intricacy's of the job.  It has been a long process.
Chris mentioned that over the course of those 25 years, over $5 million has been given out to deserving projects and charities.  The CFSEA now has over $12M under management in the endowment, and employs a professional manager for the funds.  She was very happy to report that they achieve an administrative cost of 1.5%, which is superior to many charitable organizations.
She spoke about the rebuilding of the office staff over the summer and the work that has gone on to put out Vital Signs 2017.  She believes, given the work involved that it will not be an annual publication in the future.  She advised that they are working on giving advisory groups in both Brooks and Oyen, to help direct local funds in the best way.  She also spoke about making grants both responsive and impactful.
A good crowd was on hand to ask a few questions, and Chris was thanked for her work by President Karen.
One of the activities that new Rotarians are asked to perform is to give a short presentation to the club about themselves, introducing all of us to their family, their career and the activities in their lives that have brought them to Rotary.  This week we were all pleased to learn more about Jillian Koch, a new Rotarian in the last year, who is currently an Accountant and Partner with JMH & Co. in Medicine Hat.  Interestingly, accounting was not her first career choice, in fact she was certain that she was going into Library Science.
She grew up as a reader and lover of books.  She still is!  She was born and raised in Medicine Hat, her father was in construction and her mother an English instructor at the MH College.  As a teenager she worked in a number of libraries in the local area.  However when she went to university in Calgary, she got a degree in archeology and spent a little time working in the field.  However she soon learned this wasn't the right career for her and went back to school, eventually obtaining a degree in accounting.
She has now spent 9 years with JMH and in the company of her Wheaten Terrier, enjoys reading, cataloging and yoga in her new home.
She has enjoyed the opportunities of Rotary, has been active in our Gala committee last year and worked on the International Service committee.  She is the incoming treasurer of the Rotary Music Festival Society and looking forward to that challenge.   A number of questions were asked and answered and we all enjoyed Jillian's talk.  Again, welcome to the Rotary family.
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Medicine Hat

We meet Mondays at 12:00 PM
Medicine Hat Lodge
1051 Ross Glen Drive SE
Medicine Hat, AB  T1B 3T8
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Rotary Club of Medicine Hat
PO Box 1058
Medicine Hat, AB, T1A 7H1
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