PROGRAM: Yvonne Cavalli, founder of Bountiful Harvest, presented a program about how her organization meets the needs of low-income and homeless people in the Brighton area.
PROGRAM: Yvonne Cavalli, founder of Bountiful Harvest, presented a program about how her organization meets the needs of low-income and homeless people in the Brighton area.
  • Welcome back President Adrienne Knack.
  • Jane and Mike McManus are now Paul Harris recipients plus four. Congratulations.
  • Dash or Crash updates: Flyers available for distribution; PDFs of flyers will be sent to all members; 2 different firms have registered 10 runners, putting us ahead of pace from two years ago; Piet will hold an obstacle meeting after regular meeting next Tuesday; come out to Mt. Brighton for Slush Cup Saturday to promote Dash or Crash at special table there; be sure to register as a volunteer on the dash or crash web site; social meeting promotion is getting a lot of shares and likes; billboard expected up this week.
  • Bill Anderson said Brighton Rotary bowling team raised more than 1,000 bucks for Big Brothers Big Sisters.
  • Donna Craig announced that club has received a receipt for its 2000 gift to Shelter Box USA.
  • Nancy Johnson and Beth Walker stressed that there is a 500 dollar anonymous gift waiting if enough Rotarians read the March Rotarian and find four references to Michigan. Fill in the page numbers on green slips available at meeting through end of month. (Hint: One of the page numbers is the same number of losing cards in Tom’s deck after the Ace of Spades and the joker are removed.)
  • The Brighton Women’s Role of Honor celebration has grown so large that it has been moved to the Brighton District Library at 3:30 March 25. Many of the 87 members are Brighton Rotarians.
  • Beth Walker says that Kroger sent a check to club for 45 dollars that will go to scholarship fund.
  • Practice ACT test is April 22; early registration date is April 10.
  • Carol Bullion said there is still room at a Rotary table for the April 1 Fur Ball.
  • The cows are back. A 10 purchase of a small moo-er will purchase 12 gallons of milk thanks to the Michigan Milk Producers. (Follow-up: All 20 of the cows were adopted, bringing in more than 200 dollars.)
Yvonne Cavalli is a long-time Brighton resident who spent some time in Florida but returned to Brighton where she answered the call for community service. In 2011 she founded Bountiful Harvest, which operates out of donated space in the basement of St. George’s Lutheran Church on West Main Street in Brighton. She says that even though Livingston County is the wealthiest county in the state, there are many people who are homeless and in need. In its first year, Bountiful Harvest served about 800 clients. Last year, that number grew to 4,311 families and 11,756 people, about a quarter who are senior citizens. This is accomplished even though Bountiful Harvest is only open 6 hours a week over three days. Last year they gave out one-quarter of a million pounds of food.
The organization does more than hand out food. It serves hot breakfast one day a week; it has started a clothing store, giving out 546 winter coats in one day last year; and it has started a laptop distribution program for low-income students who otherwise would fall behind at school.
There is no rent to pay, various churches rotate responsibility for running the pantry, and no one gets paid; yet the annual budget is still 92,000. Part of that is raised at its fund-raising dinner which is Friday night at Cleary University.
Jane McManus, Rich Perlberg and Carole Bullion all failed to find the Ace of Spades.