Sebastopol Rotary embraces Rotary International’s commitment to world peace and the betterment of poor people around the globe.  We commit both money and volunteer time, with some of our most meaningful and memorable projects being the work we have done with our own hands in some of the farthest corners of the world.
 
               - Adopt –a-village: Over the last decade, the club has adopted small towns in Latin America, Africa, and Asia to help them with their basic needs.  This past year, the club has contributed to education projects in Mexico, and education, sanitation and development projects in a small town in Ecuador, including an effort to develop commercial sheep breeding.  These projects vary from year to year, but they give us the opportunity to find and support the determined efforts of fellow Rotarians and their communities abroad.  As with many of our international projects, our financial support is amplified by our ability, with the help of Rotary International, to find matching grants that significantly increase the amount of money we can direct to these communities.  For example, our $17,000 contribution to our Ecuadorian village grew to $78,000 with various matching grants.
 
 
               - Helping Girls Stay in SchoolThe Club is pleased to support Kathie and Frank Mayhew, two club members, whose Anthill Foundation, supports the education of young women around the world.  This year, our effort helped the foundation build a new school building for girls in rural Uganda.  Frank spent two weeks working in Uganda with villagers constructed a new building and came back to us beaming with pride about the impact that he, the foundation, and the club have had on the lives of dozens of girls who might otherwise never had a chance for a decent education.
 
 
               - Rotary International’s Commitment to End Polio Around the WorldThe club actively supports the Rotary International Foundation, which supports important peace and development initiatives around the world.  One of its great accomplishments is its campaign to end polio around the world.  Last year, the club gave $51,000 to RI’s Foundation, of which $27,000 went to Polio Plus.  After decades of work, polio is now limited to just a few spots on earth, and we are now committed to completing the task within the next decade.

 

 
               - The Peace and Justice Program – The club has just formed a Peace and Justice Committee to support and supplement Rotary International’s Peace and Justice Program.  RI is committed to promoting peace and justice around the world.  Its effort includes masters programs at Tokyo Christian University, a joint effort of Duke and UNC/Chapel Hill, and programs at universities in Wales, England, Sweden and Australia, where the University of Queensland has committed to creating a $70-100 million dollar (Aus) to support its work.  Here in Sebastopol, our committee is focused on encourage cultural exchange programs, particularly to increase contacts with Muslim culture.  We are also looking at whether we can develop a peace fellow training program at our local high schools.