Posted by Wes Baumann
There were 34 persons in attendance at this week’s meeting – 29 members, three guests and our two speakers.  Bob Sanfilippo, the recently appointed director of the Counseling Center of the North Shore was the guest of David Grant and Liz Taylor, Board members of the CCNS, as well as his predecessor Robert Mardirossian.  Bob has expressed interest in becoming a member of the Club.  Marie Kuipers brought Laura Cunningham for her second visit.  Lee Padgitt brought his daughter, Annie, who is teaching in Steamboat Springs, Colorado.
There was a rendition of ‘happy birthday’ for Ned Meissner and president Tom Nash recognized that Ginny Hilton has been a member of the Club for 20 years.  Tom also announced the upcoming District Assembly this coming weekend as well as the District Conference to be held in Sheboygan from May 17 to 20. 
Rich Lalley told the Club that Darrel and Karen Malcom would be retiring this year from their positions with the Kids Against Hunger program.  Rich proposed presenting the Malcoms with an honorary Paul Harris Award from our club.  The couple has been instrumental in the many years our Club has packed meals for this fantastic program.
Bill Leske reminded the Club that our annual benefit would be held on May 11th from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at A. Perry Homes at 1220 Washington Avenue in Wilmette.  The cost is $80 per person with the proceeds going to support the Club’s foundation’s Community Grants program.  Patti Van Cleave said she is seeking items for the silent auction as well as bottles of wine for gift baskets.  Tying in with the benefit Brooke Peppey, Foundation chair, mentioned that the Club will match dollar for dollar up to $100 contributions to organizations that the foundation is recognizing with a grant.
Patti Van Cleave announced the Winnetka Club will be sponsoring “Housewalk 2018” where participants can tour five fantastic homes in Glencoe, Kenilworth and Winnetka on May 17th.  Tickets for this fundraiser cost $35 per person.
Happy Buck$ came from Ned Meissner for his great trip to Ecuador and his successful back surgery procedure this past Monday -Tony Kambich contributed for David Birkenstein for bringing in a speaker on stem cells that have provided Tony with relief- Robert Mardirossian in honor of Bob Sanfilippo – Rich Lalley for the award our Club won for its website –  and the theater got recognition from Heather Higgins for a great play she saw called “Memphis” at the Cadillac Palace Theatre – Terry Dason in tribute to the Writer’s Theatre in Glencoe for its play “Smart People” – and Barb Tubekis touted “a Taste of Things to Come in Water Tower’s Broadway Playhouse at Water Tower Place, a play about four Winnetka housewives.
John Thomas capably handled Dig ‘n Grin and provided his audience with a few chuckles.
David Birkenstein introduced the day’s speakers from the Senior Center of the North Shore:  Dr. Elizabeth Gordon, the Director of the North Shore Senior Options at the NSSC and Eddie Meyer a program specialist and outreach liaison for this program.  The NSSC has a service area of an eight miles radius around the Northfield Campus, but they will not refuse service to those outside of this area.  There are service sites in Niles, Glenview and Evanston, but its main campus is in Northfield, which is also the location of its House of Welcome.  The House of Welcome offers services for adults with memory loss giving caregivers a break.  Music and art therapy, gardening, discussion groups, table games, trivia, storytelling and exercise are among the activities offered to this group of seniors. The agency has an annual budget between 6 and 7 million dollars and a staff of 125 full time equivalents. 
Dr. Gordon also spoke about programs providing assistance to grandparents who are raising their grandchildren, adult protective services and caregiver support groups.  The Center also helps seniors with housing issues such as how to get housekeeping chores done, how to look at the possibility of moving to assisted living, navigating the complexities of Medicare and dealing with the infirmities of aging.  They also help pre-seniors in dealing with aging parents. The Senior Options program covers many of the issues of growing old gracefully.  The North Shore Senior Options program is a 501c that is always looking for areas where seniors have needs.  Care management is fee based.  They do a comprehensive assessment to determine the senior’s needs.  The Senior Option program provides in home therapy that can help depressed senior determine a course of action.  The program can also provide help for seniors with their financial paper work i.e. paying bills, preparing taxes, etc.  They will also provide a home safety assessment.
Tony Kambich provided a brief history of the NSSC emphasizing Rotary’s involvement with the Center and the fact that its first home was the Winnetka Community House.  Another feature that was brought up by a member is the Lending Closet whereby seniors can borrow, at no cost, some durable medical equipment such as walkers, canes, crutches, raised toilet seats, wheelchairs, shower benches, etc.
The main conclusion one comes to is that we are extremely fortunate to have this fantastic agency in our own backyard.