Representatives of "Partnership for Children"
Spoke to the Club
Terri Rickel opened the meeting and encouraged members to walk in Elkhart Cancer’s Compassion Walk on May 7th at the request of Patricia Brotherson (spouse of Jim Brotherson, longtime Elkhart Rotarian).
Laura Ezzell introduced HS Students: Martin Salazar, Rachel Swanson, Brian Vance & Lauren Weirich
Doug Risser again discussed upcoming ‘Give-A-Book’ service trip to Costa Rica May 17-25 a joint project of the Peace Corps and Rotary International.
Sergeant Jeff New among other things schooled members on Passover, Matza, and Prunes.  Funds generated by the Sergeants are shared annually with local non-profits.
The topic for the day was the ‘Partnership for Children.’ First to speak was Kevin Deary, Elkhart County CEO of the Boys & Girls Club, one of the members of the partnership which also includes: Bashor Children’s Home, 5 Star, Lifeline Youth Ministries, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Elkhart County, Caps, Ryan’s Place, Center for Community Justice, The Post, The Crossing, The Tolson Center, and Oaklawn.
Kevin’s part of the talk was to lay out the history and the need that all organizations that dealt with children in the county often would have a youngster that had mental health needs that exceeded the capacity of all these organizations. In a meeting called by Bashor CEO Don Phillips, the organizations collectively agreed to ask Elkhart County Community Foundation to fund the mechanism through which any organization could send these children to Oaklawn for proper care.
Then Ben Strickland described how Oaklawn has been the single point of entry for mental health assistance by discussing the 72 families since last July who have been helped including several youth who are still alive today because of the Partnership.
Upcoming Programs:
April 25, 2016: Dr. Jonathan Neufeld from Oaklawn
May 2, 2016: Matthew Miller, President of Newmar Corporation