Meeting of November 24, 2019
President Jeremy summarized the discussions at the Board meeting the prior Monday, i.e. 1) Chris Chidester and Vicki Stewart were approved to present to the club for new membership (one week waiting period), 2) we would celebrate World Polio Day on October 24th, 3) November 8th will be our Rotary Foundation day, 4) Rotary After Hours this coming week will consist of a service project at the Food Pantry followed by socializing, 5) our Thanksgiving feast for seniors may be prepared with the help of the First Federated Church, 6) electronics recycling fundraiser may be back on soon, 7) December 19th will be our Yankee Swap at Spring Hill, 8) we may soon have a display case at the town hall to show off our Rotary achievements, 9) the 2 grants are moving along; and we also briefly covered the topics of citizen of the year, our Interact club's trick or treating for cans (we will help with trucking), and possibly supporting an exchange student.  We also agreed to commemorate the bicentennial of the state of Maine at our Geography Quiz Night, especially if that happens in March, the month of the true bicentennial.
So, mark your calendars for:
Halloween (help with trucks, those who signed up)
November 7 - Club Assembly
November 14 - Rotary Foundation Presentation
November 21 - Speaker provided by Stan Shapleigh
November 24 - Serve meals for Seniors for Thanksgiving
November 28 - NO MEETING
December 5 and December 12 - speakers provided by Jeremy and Carol Chapman
December 6 - Home for the Holidays
December 19 - Yankee Swap
We were privileged to have Katherine Kolios address our club about the program for which she is executive director, Rain for the Sahel and Sahara.  The organization is headquartered in Portsmouth and provides assistance to the country of Niger in Africa.  Niger is 50 times the size of the state of NH and has only 20 million people despite the expansive desert there.  For those who didn't know, Sahel means "the shore" and Sahara means "the void".  They work with mostly nomadic people and the country is impoverished by most world standards.  The main ethnic groups they serve are the Tuareg and the Wadabe, and the country has enormous needs and happens to have the highest fertility rate in the world.  Last year alone, her organization helped over 14000 people in the following ways:  1) accessing food and water (mortality from water-borne illnesses is very high) by drilling wells with solar-powered pumps which provide not only drinking and clean water but the means to irrigate gardens and increase harvests, 2) providing opportunities for women entrepreneurs by helping them to form savings and loan groups to help them finance their business ideas, 3) education beyond just primary level plus practical skills through mentors, and support for children to attend schools for higher education, which at this point is middle school and beyond.  Obviously the work is challenging for the small group that works there, but extremely rewarding.
For more information, see