Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Orofino Rotary extends outreach internationally

Randy Bowen of Orofino, fourth from left, represented the Orofino Rotary Club during its 2008 international project in the Philippines.

By Randy Bowen

Since it was chartered in 1978, the Orofino Rotary Club has lived the Rotary motto, “Service above Self.

Locally, Rotary has completed many service projects that have benefited the Orofino and Clearwater communities. These have included running the annual Fourth of July Log Drive to provide scholarships to Orofino and Timberline High Schools, constructing the helipad at Clearwater Valley Hospital, building the Museum patio, creating the Rotary softball field, and erecting the gazebo in the City Park (to name only a few) .

The Orofino Rotary Club, part of Rotary International and Rotary District 5080, also strives to provide service to the international community. Examples follow:

In 1984, six years after the club was chartered, club members organized a project that sent hospital beds to the Philippine Islands.

In 1985 medical supplies and an ambulance were driven from Orofino to Mexico.

During 1998/99 the club was actively involved in building a housing project in Peru.

In 2002 Orofino Rotary partnered a local Rotary Club in the Philippines and applied for money in support of a large computer literacy project in Cagayan de Oro, Mindanao. The clubs delivered 10 complete computer units to the Cugman Elementary School there.

In 2006 Orofino Rotary partnered with the Rotary Club of Cagayan de Oro Far East. Utilizing a District 5080 Simplified Grant, the two clubs provided computer literacy to the Balubal Elementary School in Mindanao.

The year 2008 saw Orofino Rotary create partnerships with the Rotary Club of Cagayan de Oro & the Ayala Foundation and GILAS (Gearing up Internet Literacy and Access for Students), two Filipino foundations that promote computer literacy. Together the partnership provided 6 computers, printers, furniture, and a server with internet access to Bayanga National High School outside of Cagayan de Oro City.

During the 2009-2010 Rotary year, the Orofino Rotary Club realized a humanitarian goal of providing potable water service to 300 homes in the Philippines. Previously, each household had to buy drinking water from a water broker daily and haul it two kilometers back home.

Last year, the club provided much needed school supplies to over 200 students at the Special Education Unit of City Central Elementary School in Cagayan de Oro.

In October of this year, Orofino Rotary will be providing school supplies and basic protective footwear to students at Cabalawan Elementary School in the San Juanico area of Leyte Island, in the Philippines. To accomplish this project, Orofino Rotary has partnered with Aaron and Heidi Garcia of Orofino, the Second Indian Presbyterian Church of Kamiah, and the Nez Perce Indian Churches’ Joint Session. The Orofino Rotary Club is highly appreciative of these individuals and organizations for their financial partnerships!

The Rotary Club of Orofino is consistently involved in the international community to help achieve world understanding and peace through international humanitarian, educational, and cultural exchange programs.

Locally, with the assistance of Orofino High School managers, the club is also working to organize a High School Interact Club. This Rotary-affiliated club for high school-aged students will also be required to be involved in international “Service above Self” projects yearly.

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