From The Top
 
Co-President Scott opened the meeting with the pledge led by Jason Tewes, and grace by Charlie Spencer. Today’s guest speaker was District 7255 Foundation Chair, Marion Stark. Other guests were Pat Ziegler and Laura Brennan.
 
Announcements
 
New Member Application – The board has approved the membership application of Pat Ziegler. Her name will be posted to the general membership today.
 
Dictionary Project – Our 2018/2019 Dictionary Project wrapped up today. Twelve hundred dictionaries were distributed to students in 15 elementary schools in our service area.  Many thanks for the dedicated work of Co-Chairs Frank Seibert, Marc Horowitz, and Pam Giarrusso, and to all who helped make it another highly successful project.
 
Shoe Drive - The Northport Rotary Club is sponsoring a “Soles for Souls”Shoe Drive again this year, and Megan Noble has again agreed to offer her office as the collection point for our club.  If you have lightly used shoes that can benefit some needy person, please tie or band them in pairs and drop them off in the a drop off box in the hallway of Megan’s office at 1801 Argyle Square in Babylon Village. The shoe drive will run through March 22nd.  
 
 Dog Walk FundraiserThe Dog Walk Fundraiser committee is proceeding with arrangements and sponsors for our new Dog Walk Fundraiser, to be held on Saturday, April 20th. You can register for the event through the Babylon Rotary Facebook page (click on “Events”), and through the Eventbrite page: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/babylon-rotarys-paws-for-a-cause-dog-walking-event-tickets-57609554729. Also, if you can lend Josie a hand with the many event details that need attention, please contact her at: (josieannmuniz@gmail.com).
 
A Dog Walk committee meeting will be held following our regular meeting next Wednesday, March 20th. Please attend, bring your best ideas, and see how you can help.
 
Arbor Day – The date and time of our Annual Arbor Day celebration is still TBD. However, it will be held at the Parliament Elementary School in North Babylon. Trees have been ordered and preparations are underway; stay tuned for more information.
 
Today’s Program
 
Marion Stark gave a presentation on the Rotary Foundation.
She began with a summary of the networking and ethical business standards set by the founders of Rotary, and of the origin of The Rotary Foundation.
 
 A decade after the founding of Rotary, the organization turned from self-serving interests and began accepting endowments for the purpose of doing good in the world in charitable, educational, and other avenues of community service. Accomplishments were modest until donations to the Foundation started pouring in immediately following the 1947 death of Rotary founder Paul Harris.
 
Today, The Rotary Foundation is the charitable arm of Rotary that helps fund Rotary’s humanitarian activities, from local service projects to global initiatives. The Foundation also takes the lead on worldwide Rotary campaigns such as eradicating polio and promoting peace throughout the world. Due to the hard work and generosity of Rotarians worldwide, The Rotary Foundation has improved the lives of millions of people for over 100 years.
 
The Rotary Foundation also offers district and global grants that any Rotary club or district can apply for to support a wide variety of projects, scholarships, and training.
 
Global Grants fund large international humanitarian projects, vocational training teams, and scholarships that have sustainable, measurable outcomes in one or more of Rotary International’s six Areas of Focus. Project fundind requests must be for a minimum of $30,000. A key feature of global grants is partnership - grants are sponsored by at least one Rotary club or district in the country where the project will take place, and one or more outside that country.                                                                      
 
District Grants are block grants that allow clubs and districts to address immediate needs, generally small-scale, short-term projects, in their communities and abroad. Each district chooses which activities it will fund with these grants.
 
Marion gave several examples of District 7255 projects supported by Rotary global grants. She explained how project funding can be magnified through district and Rotary International matching, emphasizing the wide ranging economic and social impact of Rotary projects in depressed communities throughout the world.
 
Marion concluded by describing the Rotary Peace Scholarships, fully funded academic fellowships to pursue a Masters Degree Program or Professional Development Certificate, related to peace and conflict resolution and prevention, at one of five peace centers around the world.
 
Next Week’s Program
 
 At our next regular meeting on Wednesday, March 20th, Caroljean D’Aquila will tell us about Habitat Suffolk.
 
Membership Minute
 
Member Recruitment & Retention Is Everyone’s Job
 
Every Rotarian is keenly aware that the vitality and long term prosperity of the club requires that every member continually strive to identify and recruit new members. This entails not only encouraging friends, associates, and other candidates to join, but to help create public awareness by introducing non-Rotarians to Rotary, the BRC, and the good works of our club.
 
Retaining good members is even more critical to long-term growth and health of the club as the recruitment of new members.  The only way to achieve low voluntary attrition is to make BRC membership a productive, rewarding and enjoyable experience for everyone. Every member plays a vital role in this process.
 
Successful member retention involves many elements, from properly welcoming, orienting and assimilating new members, to continuous, active involvement in motivating club projects and other activities, interesting meetings, comprehensive communications, education and training, and ample opportunities to network and socialize with fellow Rotarians, community leaders, friends and families.
 
Obviously, there are many important member recruitment and retention issues where we need improvement, and the Membership Development Campaign will address each of them. Our success depends wholly on the cooperation and support of every club member.