Saratoga Rotary Community Service
 
Whether you like to wear hard hats, Santa hats or hairnets
 
If you like to collect underwear, grocery items or school supplies
 
Join Community Services to clean Highway 9, bring smiles to kid’s faces, encourage budding scientists and students, help Stop Hunger Now with our Interact Club, or tell the community about our Club at Rotary Days!
 
This year, a Rotary District goal is to expand service opportunities for club members.  To accomplish this in our club, we plan to continue our favorite Community Service programs while adding a few more so that there is something going on almost every month.  Our projects will include activities where Rotarians may actively participate – like our quarterly Highway 9 clean-up and December’s Breakfast with Santa – and drives to collect items for worthy organizations like last year’s underwear drive.
 
Two of our first collections address the start of school and the District Governor’s project.
 
Underway right now is Libraries for Latimer.  Saratoga Rotary will be providing books to classrooms at Latimer Elementary School in the Moreland School District.  Latimer is reopening this August with many teachers new to teaching and without any books for classroom libraries.  (The school was closed for 8 years because of declining district enrollment.) Books for students ages 5 to 9 can be new or gently used, hardback or paperback, fiction or nonfiction, picture books, easy readers or easy chapter books.  So clean out your bookshelves, buy a copy of your favorite childhood book, or visit our local Book-Go-Round for excellent, inexpensive used books and bring them to Rotary.  The teachers and children in our community will greatly appreciate your consideration!  We will collect books at our meetings August 1, 8 and 15, 2014.
 
Rotary District 5170 has adopted a District Governor’s Project for the year: each Club will donate school supplies to a local school, specifically items a teacher has requested.  For this project, which will start after Labor Day, our Club will be supporting Anderson Elementary School, an accomplished school in the Moreland School District.
 
Anderson Elementary is located off Saratoga Avenue, about 15 minutes from Saratoga.  The school has around 500 students, with about 85% of the students qualifying for free and reduced lunch, a commonly used statistic for identifying underserved schools.  The Principal, Tasha Quinonez has identified an exciting project for us to support.
 
One of the school’s 5th grade teachers teaches hands-on science to all the 5th graders.  He is in need of materials to use in his science classes.  An example of the type of science exploration done at Anderson is the Coke and Mentos Mints experiment.  Under careful supervision, (don’t try this at home without protective gear and tarps!) Mentos are dropped into various brands of soda to see how large an eruption ensues.  Students use the scientific method to structure the experiment and their observations.  Consumable items like these bring science alive for the students.  In September, we will get a list from the teacher of all the different, common items he needs for experiments.  We will gather the items in September and display them at the District Governor’s visit to our Club meeting on October 17, 2014, before delivering the supplies to Anderson.
 
Following the District Governor’s project, we will start working on Breakfast with Santa and an underwear drive.  We are still looking for other possible projects this year, so feel free to come to our meetings or email Cathie Thermond with suggestions.
 
The Community Services Committee meets the 3rd Monday of the month, 5 – 6pm @ Paul Conrado’s office.
 
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