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SOUTHERN OREGON — The 3,300 Rotary members in the 66 central and southern Oregon as well as northernmost California clubs have raised more than $312,000 and invested thousands of volunteer hours to meet the hunger, safety and economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

From producing and distributing masks and hand sanitizer to leveraging a Rotary grant more than 10 times over, Rotary clubs are feeding and equipping the tireless medical community and first responders, assisting food banks, providing support for challenged businesses, school districts and senior centers, according to a press release from Judy Corwin, public image director for Rotary District 5110.

The extensive list of service efforts already completed and continuing in the region is indicative of Rotary International’s service mantra conquering global, national, regional and local humanitarian challenges for more than 115 years. Much like its decades-long dedication to the world-wide eradication of polio, the pursuit of those 2020 projects has never been easier as Rotary has been at the forefront of service throughout this latest crisis, the release stated.

The current leadership of Rotary District 5110 Governor Rick Olson of Eugene and Governor-Elect Cindi O’Neil of Bend have gathered the collective list of Rotary goodwill in the area and couldn’t be prouder of the effort.

Olson, summarizing the work, said, “We applied for a Disaster Relief Grant from the Rotary International World Fund. Upon receiving the $25,000, our District leadership team developed an equitable way to spread the grant assistance. We were not surprised that our clubs stepped it up to leverage the amount optimized District-wide to well more than $300,000. Our primary beneficiary focus was the homeless, unemployed or homebound. Just this last week most of the goods were purchased and delivered to communities most in need of assistance.”

O’Neil said, “Clubs from all around our District, in just days, began adjusting their service activities around filling local needs based on the pandemic effects. We know about the financial hardships facing small business in our local communities. Thus, grant and local funds in some cases, sourced food relief through local restaurants or private produce suppliers to increase the positive impact. We are overwhelmed with gratitude for the creativity, hard work, financial generosity, and the continued endurance that our Rotary leaders and members have shown during the COVID crisis. It’s just what Rotary does.”

Lincoln, Coos and Curry counties – Disaster Relief Assistance: $29,500

Rotary Clubs of Lincoln City, Philomath, Newport, Toledo, Coos Bay-North Bend, Reedsport, Coquille, Port Orford, Bandon-By-The-Sea, Brookings-Harbor and Gold Beach

The 11 clubs in three Oregon Coast counties will be partnering with numerous local organizations in support of the response to COVID-19 pandemic. Here is a summary of the efforts underway.

  • Coquille Rotary has been donating money to Frazier’s Bakery to help cover their losses from cancellation of their weekly meeting.
  • $6,500 in cash donations from a matching District 5110 grant has been donated to the “Common Good” and “Meals for Neighbors” partner programs for food distribution through the Port Orford Senior Center in partnership with the Rotary Club of Port Orford. Rotary volunteers estimate that 200 cars came through the Port Orford Senior Center distribution center in one day.
  • $9,000 has been donated to provide hand sanitizer from the recently certified maker of the safety product, and donation of medical equipment to Coos Bay local medical facilities to Coos County first-responders and frontline healthcare workers.
  • Bandon-By-The-Sea Rotary Club has donated $650 to Good Neighbors Food Bank, has pledged $500 to Southern Coos Hospital & Health Center for PPEs, and has provided a donation to help local foster families.  
  • $2,000 donated to the Patient Support Fund at the Newport hospital.
  • Provided meals for an entire day to the workers at Samaritan Hospital.
  • $500 donated to support emergency supplies for children in Foster Parent program
  • $3,000 donated to South Coast Food Share.
  • $3,000 to Salvation Army, which will be used for community members in crisis who cannot pay their utility bills.
  • $5,500 to the Olalla Center from various Rotary clubs.
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