Be The Inspiration

East Salem Rotary Projects

East Salem Rotarians have been engaged in numerous projects and events this year, offering a variety of activities to accommodate members’ interests and skills.  Below are a few of the projects we’ve worked on:
Donated fire & medical supplies were sent to volunteer fire departments in Mexico
Donated funds to a milk bank for non-lactating mothers in Mexico
Market Street cleanup
Assembled goodie bags for women in homeless shelters
Spread bark chips in garden at La Casita
Distributed dictionaries to fourth grade students in area schools
Built an outdoor play kitchen at Family Building Blocks

Provided Christmas gifts for children at La Placita, as well as an appearance by Santa (La Placita serves low-income families with children with special needs)
Salvation Army bell ringing
Monthly first Tuesday socials
McKay musical program in December

Here are upcoming events and projects:
Hunger In Our Community food drive–March
Palm Sunday brunch at Willamette Lutheran Retirement Community–April
Build outdoor playground for La Placita–spring

Medical Supplies Delivered to Mexico

Thanks to the work of the International Service Committee (Phil, Erik and Dagmar), fire equipment and medical supplies donated by several Oregon fire departments have arrived in Culiacan, Mexico to support their volunteer fire department. Supplies included turnouts, oxygen tanks, boots, helmets and various medical supplies. Erik Larson and Phil Sperl, along with Woodburn firefighters, loaded the equipment, and Phil drove the 26-foot truck to Nogales, Arizona. Some of the supplies were provided to the Nogales, Mexico volunteer fire deparment. Rotary club members and volunteer firefighters from Culiacan provided Phil with a certificate of appreciation and their Rotary club banner, which he presented to our club last Friday. The Rotarians from Culiacan look forward to more collaboration with us in the future.

Market Street Cleanup

We had a great turnout for the Market Street cleanup that took place last Saturday. Ten club members and a five-year-old assistant tidied up Market Street and completed the job in a little over an hour. Thanks to all who helped with this project, and to Steve Poland, photographer, for organizing it.

Fire and Medical Supplies Headed to Mexico

Thanks to the work of our International Service Committee, fire equipment and medical supplies are en route to Mexico to support the Culiacan, Mexico volunteer fire department. These items have been graciously donated by the Portland Fire Department, Lane Fire District, Pleasant Hill Fire District and the Woodburn Fire Department. Phil Sperl drove the truck loaded with twelve pallets of supplies to Nogales, Arizona, where they will be transferred across the border. Below are photos of the equipment being loaded here with the help of the Woodburn Fire Department, and the unloaded supplies in a warehouse in Nogales. These donated items will not only aid in fire safety, but will also potentially save lives.

La Casita Garden Project

Nine club members volunteered to help spread bark chips at the La Casita learning garden on Saturday, October 6th. The group spread 4.5 yards of bark chips on the walking paths in the garden. Thanks to Steve Poland for ordering and supervising the delivery, and thanks to all who assisted with this project. We anticipate providing additional maintenance to the learning garden at La Placita sometime in the spring.

World Polio Day October 24

October 24th is World Polio Day. Polio ravaged the lives of hundreds of thousands of people every year, mostly children, before Rotary made a commitment to eradicate polio. Thanks to the commitment of Rotarians since then, we now have fewer cases of polio than at any time in history. Only three countries are still polio-endemic; wild virus still circulates in only one remaining reservoir, on the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The success of this work has come as the result of decades of concerted and sustained effort by Rotary and all of our partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative. Rotary’s involvement has been wide-ranging: we have raised over 1.9 billion dollars to date, and have contributed countless volunteer and staff hours to the practical work of eradication, including immunization, fundraising, and advocacy. Our success has been tremendous, and we are confident that our work will soon be complete. Yet significant challenges remain, and the need for continued funding is acute. Until eradication is certified—at least three years from the time the last poliovirus is found anywhere in the world—every single child must be immunized, at a continuing cost of hundreds of millions of dollars per year. If any of that work is slowed or stopped, if any of our momentum is lost, we risk losing everything we have worked for, for so many years. Visit to learn more.

Rotary Club Champion

Rotary District 5100 District Governor Larry Hatch was the guest speaker at last week’s club meeting. He talked about the district’s initiatives and goals for the 2018-19 Rotary year. He also presented a Rotary Club Champion award to Phil Sperl, in recognition of his tireless efforts in seeking out international projects for the club to support. Recent projects include collecting and donating much-needed medical supplies, as well as ambulance and fire equipment, to fire departments in Mexico. These projects were accomplished with support from several other Rotary clubs in Oregon. Congratulations Phil!

Tabletop Service: Women’s Goodie Bags

Last week’s club meeting featured a “tabletop service” project rather than a speaker. We assembled goodie bags for women in local homeless shelters using items donated to Simply Birthdays. This group provides monthly birthdays to children in local homeless shelters, and distributes goodie bags to women and children at these parties. Thanks to all who came and helped with this project (including a visiting Rotarian), and please be thinking of other similar projects we can take part in at a club meeting.