There were 26 attendees and four guests. Guests were Donna Lee Gulley, meeting speaker and member of Northbrook Rotary; Karen and Darrel Malcom, from Kids Against Hunger and Carol Stream Rotary; and Ken Novak from Northbrook, guest of David Birkenstein. Sam Badger cited John Steinbeck in his Thought for the Day. Carl Yudall handled the Dig N Grin presentation listing several new and different “activities” by heavy stock investors during a down market!

Greg Skirving did the “Time to Shine” presentation. After retiring in 2012 from real estate related positions, he joined his wife in the realty business at Coldwell Banker, where his wife had been for about 15 years. Greg said he wasn’t “very good at retirement”. About 80-90% of their business is in the New Trier area. There have been lots of changes in the use of technology in the business. Properties appear on-line for buyer viewing even before the realtor gets involved; people are far more informed about the market; there is a greater demand for new and rehabbed properties; there are more new properties on the market; and sellers have to be willing to invest in updating their houses before placing them on the market.

Happy Bucks were contributed by Patty Van Cleave for Darrel Malcom being willing to partner with the Winnetka Congregational Church on his packing project. Darrell has been responsible for overseeing the packing of half a million meals for needy people throughout the world, especially in Nicaragua.

Guest speaker was Donna Lee Gulley from the Northbrook Rotary Club who has been a very busy volunteer for Rotary over the last 13 years. She has made two trips to Guatemala, done polio immunizations in India and Nigeria and attended the International Rotary Convention in Brazil this year. She currently serves as the District Global Grant Committee Secretary and has spent 8 years volunteering for the ShelterBox project. Before her volunteer activities, she had a 35 year career in teaching school and counseling, concluding in the Evanston schools.

She described the shelter boxes and the Shelterbox organization which has established itself at the forefront of international disaster relief, providing aid to more than a million survivors around the world. It is the premiere international aid organization that provides shelter and life-saving equipment for survival in an easily transportable box (roughly 2 ½’x3’x2 1/2’). It provides a 10 person tent designed to withstand extreme temperatures, high winds and heavy rainfall. Each tent has privacy partitions that allow recipients to divide the space as they see fit. The kit also has warmth and protection equipment such as blankets, water purification kits, children’s books, crayons, pens, etc.; a basic tool kit; mosquito screens and groundsheets; and a wood burning or multi-fuel stove.

ShelterBox instantly responds to man-made and natural disasters by providing this essential equipment quickly to the disaster area where a ShelterBox Response Team determines the need and distributes the aid. There is a large stock of equipment warehoused in the United Kingdom and other strategic locations across the globe. Often, ShelterBox is the first outside aid agency to appear on disaster scenes. The program was started in the U.K. in 2000—in fact, the U.K. supplied 800 shelter boxes for our Katrina disaster, plus only 300 from the U.S., where the program was newer. It is an International Project with a partnership with Rotary International.. The $1000 cost for each box has remained the same for the last 10 years.

Visit the organization’s website at shelterboxusa.org and click on “deployments” to see where these boxes have been used over the years. Over $300,000 was raised by Rotary for the boxes during the year of the Haiti disaster. Donna said that Rotary would like to see each Rotary Club give $1000 each year to the project. There is a matching amount from the District available for these donations through District Grants. There is a training program for Rotarians to become members of the ShelterBox teams who help distribute the supplies. 96% of the money given to ShelterBox is used to pay for the boxes.

 
 
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