from RI Director, Pat Merryweather-Arges

Disaster Response Funds and Grants

The Rotary Foundation Trustees have opened up funding for large disasters that are resulting in wide-spread humanitarian crises.   The Trustees are allowing Rotary members and non-Rotary members to donate directly to Ukraine, Pakistan, Turkey & Syria, in addition to donations to the General Disaster Response Fund.

Rotary Members In-Country Identify Needs

Rotary members living in Disaster areas have been identifying needs within their community on an ongoing basis.

Zones 25A, 25B, and 29 have been holding webinars with Rotary leaders that are working in their communities to bring about change. The webinars and PowerPoints provide further details to help you spread the invitation within your district and club.

Pakistan Needs

While the floods that devastated one third of Pakistan, many areas are still under water and other areas are starting to re-build.  Rotary International Director Faiz Kidwai has provided a plan to engage Rotarians in developing Smart Villages.   The Power Point is attached and toward the end, highlights the costs involved in building Smart Villages: Pakistan - Sustainable Smart Village

Ukraine Needs

The needs of Ukraine are wide-spread and affect their social ecosystem in all areas including physical and mental health; emergency response infrastructure; education; food insecurities; access to clean water; shelter; and social interactions.

On Monday, March 6, our Zones held a webinar focused on addressing some of these needs. The video can be viewed here: Disaster Webinar

Speakers and their power points included:

  • Ohla Paliychuk, MD, Rotarian in Ukraine on physical and mental health needs for children and adults in Ukraine; Ukraine - Dr Olha Paiychuk
  • Olga Maihutiak, MD, recently returned from Ukraine, on healthcare needs and support for hospitals and clinics in Ukraine; Ukraine - Dr. Olga Maihutiak
  • Chris Manson, recently returned from Ukraine, Founder of US Ambulances for Ukraine --- how your community canbe involved in organizing donations; Ukraine - Chris Manson
  • Elaine Hernandez, PhD, Rotarian in District 5930, currently in Lviv on social support needs for displaced persons; Ukraine - Elaine Hernandez

Turkey & Syria Needs

District Governor Emre Öztürk of District 2430 in Turkey provided great insight on the urgent and continuing needs following the Turkey & Syria earthquake in February where over 53,000 lives were lost and more than 850,000 people remain displaced.  A webinar was prepared so that you may understand the depth of the earthquake destruction and how Rotary is having an impact in assisting those who lost loved ones and for many that are now homeless. Hear about hope inspired by Rotary members! Learn of the extent of the disaster; the role Rotarians and Rotaractors in the disaster relief short and long-term; and the support needed to assist the earthquake victims.

Please do not delay in your response as the needs are urgent.  The Rotary Foundation Trustees decided that all donations made, from now until 31 March, to the Turkey/Syria Disaster Response Fund will be used to aid earthquake relief projects through disaster response grants. Turkey/Syria grant details.  Here's how to have the greatest impact: Give to Turkey/Syria Disaster Response Fund. Donations help clubs and districts provide aid and support rebuilding efforts where the need is greatest. The funds are distributed to affected communities through disaster response grants. 

Please Help Your District Participate!