Welcome to the Elkhart Rotary Club Meeting on July 29, 2019; Today we welcomed both the Interact Club AND Rotary Peace Fellows Sarah and Jonathan Nahar. A special fifth-Monday 'double feature' presentation.

President Candy Yoder opened the meeting and introduced Jim Rieckhoff who offered inspirational words, reminding everyone that today is the first day of the rest of your life, led the Pledge of Allegiance, and Four Way Test. What will you do with the first day of the rest of your life?

Our guests today were Kaitlyn Banks and Casey Ianigno (Jim Rieckhoff), Jodie Papandrea and Palmer Garton (Eric Garton), John Weiler and Scott Smith (Thad Naquin), Larry Knight (Jack Cittadine), Frances Ringenberg (Ron Ringenberg), Christy Hann (Nick Corpe), Alex and Grace Wagler (Erin Wagler), and the Interact Club and several of their respective parents. Students in the interact club included: Carter Rief, Austin Arbaugh, Jon Rehmels, Abraham Hill, Will Nolan, Hadley Malloy, Kortney Buckley, Leah and Keely Duehmig, and Patricia and Genevieve Yeakey. Honorary Rotarians Jenny and Mike Nolan were the trip's chaperones, along with  Kelly Buckley and Rotarian Ashley BowenWelcome to ALL, we hope you can all join us again some other time!

Announcements for July 29:

  • Dave Dygart, on behalf of the Caring Committee, shared that Phil Penn is having health problems, please have Phil and his family in your thoughts.
  • Peter Norton announced a volunteer opportunity for the upcoming Quilt Gardens Ride on Saturday, August 17. Participants will enjoy a day of riding in Elkhart County, venturing the scenic countryside and touring the quilt gardens throughout our communities. The Quilt Gardens Bike Ride benefits Cancer Resources of Elkhart County. Ride to advocate healthy and safe cycling throughout our beautiful county. If you're interested in volunteering for the event, please contact Peter directly.
  • Tina Weldy announced that Volunteer Signups are underway for Taste of the Gardens on Sunday, August 25. Contact Jodie Papandrea at Wellfield Botanic Gardens to signup!

Today's Guest Sergeant was Howard Edwards, who offered a new feature: "Name that Rotarian", a great way to get to know our fellow Rotarians AND raise some funds. Great job FUNdraising today, Howard. Rotary fines are collected weekly and are pooled into a fund throughout the year. In the spring more than $10,000 is distributed as grants to not for profit organizations around our county. Thanks, All, for your contributions!

Today's speakers were introduced: The Interact Club and Rotary Peace Fellows Sarah and Jonathan Nahar.
Part 1: The Interact Club
The Biblioteca David Kitson is a full-service library and community center with access to over 16,000 books, an internet connected computer center, and a variety of specialty programs located in Nosara, Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Annually, the Elkhart Rotary Club sponsors Interact Club Members to visit Costa Rica for an annual service project. This was the fifteenth year that Elkhart Rotary Club's Interact Club went to Nosara.
  • The Mission of the Fundación Biblioteca David Kitson enriches and empowers the people of our community by encouraging the lifelong habit and love of reading; providing welcoming spaces that offer collections and resources that inform, inspire, enrich, empower and entertain; promoting educational and training opportunities as an integral part of the community; creating a link between cultures that builds local and global awareness through cross-cultural understanding and friendship. 
  • Members of this year's trip included students Carter Rief, Austin Arbaugh, Jon Rehmels, Abraham Hill, Will Nolan, Hadley Malloy, Kortney Buckley, Leah and Keely Duehmig, and Patricia and Genevieve Yeakey. The trip's chaperones were Jenny and Mike Nolan, Kelly Buckley, and Rotarian Ashley Bowen. 
To learn more about the Fundación Biblioteca David Kitson visit their website: https://www.bibliotecadavidkitson.org/
Part 2: Sarah and Jonathan Nahar - Rotary Peace Fellowship
Sarah Nahar (Thompson) is a native Elkhart resident, attending Hawthorne and Roosevelt Elementary Schools, Bethany Christian Middle and High Schools, Prairie Street Mennonite Church, and was inducted into the Elkhart County Athletic Hall of Fame in 2008 for her achievements in multiple sports. Sarah attended Spelman College, was a Fulbright Scholar in Argentina, and is a graduate of the Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary. 
Jonathan Nahar (Brenneman) is from St. Mary's, Ohio, attended Huntington University and the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame. Jonathan worked as a human rights advocate in Hebron Palestine with Christian Peacemaker Teams. He was lived in Elkhart for three years and works for the Mennonite Church USA as the Israel-Palestine Partners in Peacemaking Coordinator.
  • Jonathan and Sarah participated in the prestigious Rotary Peace Fellowship Professional Development program in Bangkok Thailand. From January to April of this year, the couple joined of a cohort of peacebuilders from around the world. Each week a new peace scholar would teach new tools to assist in analyzing specific conflicts they were working on. 
  • Each year, Rotary awards up to 100 fully funded fellowships for dedicated leaders from around the world to study at one of our peace centers. Through academic training, practice, and global networking opportunities, the Rotary Peace Centers program develops the fellows into experienced and effective catalysts for peace. The fellowships cover tuition and fees, room and board, round-trip transportation, and all internship and field-study expenses.
  • In just over a decade, the Rotary Peace Centers have trained more than 1,200 fellows. Many of them now serve as leaders at international organizations or have started their own foundations.
To learn more about the Rotary Peace Fellowship visit: https://www.rotary.org/en/our-programs/peace-fellowships
Thanks to both the Interact Club and Sarah and Jonathan for their great presentations, showing the impact of Rotary beyond our borders!
About Rotary:
Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, community leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and act to create lasting change – across the globe, in our local communities, and in ourselves. The Elkhart Rotary Club was founded in 1917 and serves its community through volunteerism, providing grants to not-for-profit organizations, sponsoring, and participating in service projects such as ringing bells for the Salvation Army, roadside trash collection, and are the originators and sustainers of Wellfield Botanic Gardens. Elkhart Rotary Club’s membership consists of approximately 150 dedicated individuals from various professional backgrounds and diverse interests. Membership in the Elkhart Rotary Club is by invitation. We welcome guests to attend any of our meetings and hear from our great lineup of weekly presenters.
For more information on the Elkhart Rotary Club, visit elkhartrotary.org or email elkhartnoonrotary@gmail.com. Like and follow us on Facebook at www.facebook/ElkhartRotaryClub to stay current on meetings, upcoming events or speakers, and initiatives in the community.
Upcoming Meetings and Programs:
Join us for our next meeting:
All meetings are at noon on Mondays at the Matterhorn Banquet and Conference Center, 2041 Cassopolis St. in Elkhart IN, 46514. In months that include a FIFTH Monday, the Elkhart Rotary Club holds an alternative meeting or activity.