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.  We have also continued an ongoing project begun in 1996 in conjunction with the Club Rotario Vallarta Sur in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, to provide needed financial assistance to good students in middle school, high school, and university. In the 2017-18 school year, eleven club members provided a total of $3,700 to twelve students, who used the money to stay in school and continue their studies.  As a result several club members have had the gratifying experience of helping a good student stay in school beginning in middle school through to their university graduation. 
 
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 project 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 past 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.  We continue to work with the Rotary International Foundation to sustain support for the school.
 
                Sebastopol World Friends (Chyhyryn Ukraine Hospital Project) - Chyhyryn, Ukraine is a sister city to Sebastopol.  Sebastopol World Friends, a non-profit maintains the relations between the two cities,  has committed to re-equipping the local hospital, where much of what is there is 40 years old.  The club has recently donated $5000 to SWF for the project.  The money has allowed SWF to initiate the assembling and shipping of the materials to Ukraine.  
 
               - 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.  In 2017-18, 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 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.
 
               - And one more thing: It's Not All One Way: Most of what we write about is good works that we do.  But Rotary is about international friendship and cooperation, and this year demonstrated that friendship and cooperation in a big way.  In 2011, a club member, Nao Noguchi, spearheaded a fundraising effort that sent $15,000 to the Rotary of Otsuchi, Japan.  This year, the Otsuchi club returned the favor, sending a gift of $5000 for victims of the Wine Country fires. Accompanying the gift was a note: "After the March 2011 Great Earthquake, your club send us aid money to be used for the purchase of a fire pump engine, and we deeply appreciated the thought. We will never forget your love and support."