Mar 012016

Rotarians of District 7770,

In October 2015 many parts of Rotary District 7770 suffered significant devastation from a flood.  I have been extremely proud of the ways in which Rotarians have responded to the event, to the flood victims and to requests for assistance.  Thank you, Rotarians, for all that you have done to help the flood victims.  Initially our Rotarians reached out to their communities, in the spirit of a family of Rotary and provided helping hands and financial assistance to agencies working with flood victims and to individuals affected by the flood.  Like all disasters there was a flurry of activity during the first months; but as time passed, the volunteer interest waned.  It has been five months since the flood, and we are not nearly finished with the task.

Most recently our Rotary district partnered with the St Bernard Project (SBP) to help repair and rebuild homes affected by the flood.  The mission of SBP, founded in March 2006, is to shorten the time between disaster and full recovery.  Since its founding, SBP has rebuilt homes for over 950 families with the help of more than 100,000 volunteers in New Orleans, LA; Joplin, MO; Staten Island, NY; Rockaway, NY; Monmouth/Ocean Counties, NJ; San Marcos, TX, and most recently Columbia, SC.  SBP is not the only organization helping flood victims and not your only choice to invest your time.  Find your niche and help others.  If your Rotary club would like a real hands-on experience in providing service, let me recommend that you organize a work day focused on helping a flood victim.  Even if you do not live in one of the 26 flood-affected counties of South Carolina, you can still help.  Will you consider volunteering to “Be a Gift to the World” through service to those in need?

Rod Funderburk



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