Blue Star Mothers need your holiday help

Screen Shot 2018-11-10 at 10.31.31 AMAs most of our members know, we have been assisting the local chapter of Blue Star Mothers in a variety of ways for the past several years.

The volunteer national organization that addresses the needs of military families is in the midst of its annual drive to create and ship holiday packages called “Freedom Boxes” to active military around the world.

Donna Vickery will pay a visit from the organization at our Thursday, November 29, dinner meeting. At that time, she gladly will accept any donations from the wish list shown below. In addition, Debbie Rodriguez will accept donated items on her behalf the following week, December 6.

Donna notes, “We will be packing boxes starting November 18th , right on through until we have enough donations for 1,000 boxes. We hope to get all the boxes out by December 10 so we can get them there for Christmas. I can’t tell you how much we appreciate it. I am staying awake nights trying to come up with a way to get these soldiers boxes for Christmas.”

BSM Flyer


RI asks SRC’s help in new survey

Screen Shot 2018-11-08 at 11.53.42 AMSouthern Rensselaer County Rotary is among a small number of District 7190 clubs invited by Rotary International to participate in a new online survey.

The project seeks to assess individual Rotarians’ volunteer experiences over the past four weeks. No individual identities will be revealed in the final survey report. Even if you have not been active in a volunteer effort during that period, your survey answers will help RI understand the individual Rotary experience, so we would appreciate everyone’s involvement.

The absolute deadline for responding to the survey is Tuesday, November 20.

To fill out the survey, which should take just a few minutes, simply click here.


Recycling in the rain, really

Loading a container of papers into the mobile shredder.

Recycling IconDespite wet, blustery conditions — that, of course, gave way to after-event sunshine — our latest “SRC Recycling Day” to support our youth scholarships program was quite successful on Saturday.

A steady stream of people anxious to rid themselves of documents, old TV sets, electronic components, etc., showed up at the Wainschaf Associates facility to keep our volunteers happy.

In fact, one person showed up with 911 pounds of documents to be shredded.

Numerous people expressed their support for this recycling effort, and for Rotary’s commitment to the community at large. A fair number of them also said “Keep the change,” and several others who had no chargeable items to recycle donated money to the effort. We’ll have a complete financial accounting by treasurer Murray Forth at next Thursday’s dinner meeting.

Among the volunteers: Murray Forth, Terry Brewer, Josh Wainman, Pat Bailey, Bill Dowd, Andy Leyhane, Mike Dewey, Ray and Lois Hannan, Debbie Rodriguez, Charlie Foote, Kevin Leyhane, Dick Drumm, Phil Kellerman, Debbie and Peter Brown, and Carol Orvis.

Here are a few other scenes from the day:












Meeting Clipboard: 11/1/18

SRC ClipboardHeld at Quigley’s Restaurant
573 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY 12061

Members Attending (15, quorum reached): Andy Leyhane, Murray Forth, Pat Bailey, Peter Brown, Bill Dowd, Dick Drumm, Ray Hannan, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Carol Orvis, Debbie Brown, Phil Kellerman, Terry Brewer, Kevin Leyhane, Charlie Foote.

Guests: None.

President Andy greeted members and led the Pledge of Allegiance. … Bill Dowd reported that our October drive to raise funds for ShelterBox had topped the $5,400 mark and he expected to reach the targeted $6,000 level this week. … Plans are on track for this Saturday’s SRC Recycling Day despite the forecast for rain. Several more volunteers are needed to staff the event, and anyone who is interested but has not yet signed up is asked to check with event coordinator Murray Forth ASAP. … Terry Brewer said he has received responses from about a dozen or so people to the club survey he distributed to members last week. He said he plans to follow up with people who have not responded so we have a better set of comments and suggestions to map out the club’s future. … Next meeting: Richard Zazycki, executive director of Circles of Mercy, our frequent partner in social aid efforts, will update us on the activities of his non-profit organization.

Screen Shot 2018-11-02 at 5.46.42 PMThe program for the evening was a social one, with Kevin Leyhane leading an audio competition in which attendees were asked to identify TV show theme songs.

We had three teams competing for top honors. The winning team consisted of Andy, Phil, Terry, and Murray. Thanks to Kevin for coming up with an offbeat social activity.


Meeting Clipboard: 10/25/18

SRC ClipboardHeld at Quigley’s Restaurant
573 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY 12061

Members Attending (13, quorum reached): Andy Leyhane, Murray Forth, Pat Bailey, Peter Brown, Bill Dowd, Dick Drumm, Ray Hannan, John Justino, Jim Leyhane, Roberto Martinez, Carol Orvis, Becky Raymond, Carole Spencer.

Guests (5): Dr, Martha Lepow, David Palmquist, Mr. & Mrs. Bill Nathan, Linda Decelle.

President Andy Leyhane called the meeting to order, and welcomed members and guests. … Bill Dowd reported that donations for our ShelterBox fund drive have topped $5,200 with a week remaining to reach the $6,000 goal. He reiterated that members and friends of Rotary have donated in widely varied amounts, and encouraged everyone else to donate something of any amount to help underwrite the organization’s many ongoing disaster relief efforts around the world. Donors can mail checks, made payable to ShelterBox (and are tax deductible), to Bill at 7 Hyland Circle, Troy, NY 12182, or give them to him at our November 1 meeting which will be the final day to do so. … We had 10 people enrolled in  last Saturday’s Rotary Leadership Institute held at the UAlbany School of Public Health, the largest group from anywhere in District 7190. We had four new Rotaractors among our numbers, and Roberto Martinez received his certificate for completing all three levels of the program. (Click here for details of the event.) …

… SRC is working to support the Greenbush YMCA’s Caring Community Basket Brigade effort to collect, assemble, and deliver Thanksgiving baskets to needy families. Shopping lists, dropoff hours, and other items of information are included in the event flyer that has been posted on the website. Click here to see it. … Online registration is available for the annual Foundation Dinner, scheduled for Thursday, November 8, at the Glen Sanders Mansion in Scotia. … Murray Forth, winner of the raffle for a wine-pairing dinner for 12 at Cafe Capriccio in Albany, informed us the event was excellent. President Andy asked if members would like to hold another such raffle, perhaps early in the new year and the consensus was favorable. He also noted that Bell Top Elementary School may do the same thing to raise funds for the therapy dog project we are helping underwrite there.  … We still need several more volunteers to staff next Saturday’s (November 3) Recycling Day. Please see Murray if interested. … Next Thursday’s dinner program will be a TV theme song quiz — table vs. table — being put together by Kevin Leyhane.

Dr. Martha Lepow updates attendees on the global polio situation.

SRC member John Justino, director of the Center for Global Health at the UAlbany School of Public Health, spoke about the 6th annual World Polio Day, which was marked on Wednesday of this week. John then showed a copy of the livestream video that was created to mark the day.

John introduced Dr. Martha Lepow, a pioneer in polio research in the 1950s and ’60s. Martha, who was featured in the “History of Polio” video SRC made in cooperation with UAlbany, CASDA, and District 7190, continues to keep current about polio research and treatment, and updated attendees on the global situation, noting that endemic polio still is showing up in just three countries — Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria — after being declared eradicated in 122 other nations.

She stressed the need for ongoing vaccine programs because, while polio cannot be cured, it can be prevented. In response to questions from the audience, she explained the various types of paralytic and non-paralytic polio, and said the occasional appearances of what are described as “polio-like symptoms” in the U.S. “are very distant cousins of polio,” not the poliomyelitis strain that once was a global scourge.


Basket Brigade seeking Thanksgiving donations

Members and famiies of SRC are being asked to assist the Greenbush YMCA, where SRC member Shannon Romanowski is the director, in its Caring Community Basket Brigade.

The effort collects food for needy families in the community at Thanksgiving. The flyer below contains all the details.

A purchasing tip: The variously-branded Golub Corp. supermarkets — Price Chopper, Market 32, and Market Bistro — have a wide variety of 10-for-$10 grocery items on sale this week.

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