Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Strobell Speaks of Guatemala Stoves

Lots going on in SGR.  The Rotary car show committee has added a Friday night dinner with entertainment for registrants.  Dutch oven cookers are needed.  If you have one to loan or want to volunteer to help with this project, see Ken Sizemore.

Terance announced the board has agreed to donate $1000 a year for the next 5 years to the St. George Children’s Museum.

He also announced the beginning of a club visioning session.  More information to come.

Speaker Dan Strobell noted RI expects each club to support their community through service but also encourages each club to have an international project, as well.  In the case of SGR, our longtime international service project is building stoves in Guatemala, considered to be the poorest country on earth.  And the Mayan villages we serve are “a  4th world country within a 3rd world country, where children often are not schooled because they must spend up to 3 hours a day gathering wood.  SGR’s involvement spans more than a decade of building now 350 stoves, and more recently also providing books and toys for the children, beans and rice for families, shoes, dentistry, glasses, training on such issues as dental health and newborn resuscitation.

This year, members of SGR have applied for another Global Grant (if awarded this will be the 3rd GG in 5 years), but must provide a match of $13,000.  To date, we have received funding support in the amount of $5000 from the Cedar City club and additional funding has been pledged from both the Richfield and Provo clubs.  

Monday, April 18, 2016

SGR Hears of Ugandan Dental Program

“Teaching is the most important thing we do,” said Dr. Drew Cahoon of his dental work in the East African countries of Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi, speaking to SGR on Monday, April 18, 2016.  Supported in his efforts by a handful of Rotarians in his home club in Raymond, Alberta, Canada, and donations from SGR, his program has raised more than $2 million in ten years for the purchase of 106 dental chairs, x-ray and other equipment and have taken the work “from dream to clinic in 2 ½ years.”

“Our next goal is to go from 98% extraction to 50% extraction and the rest prevention and control.  We’ve done what we set out to do but there is so much more we can do,” noted an enthusiastic Cahoon   Other accomplishments during a decade of work in East Africa include partnerships with 13 regional referral hospitals which provide free dental work; a donation of $22,000 worth of equipment and supplies from A-dec (an Oregon-based manufacturer of ergonomic dental equipment), the implementation of ACT (atraumatic restorative treatment) which provides filling decayed teeth at a cost of just $2.30 per students (to date 66,500 family members have been treated through this program); and, 27 courses completed each with 18-20 participants, and each receiving 2 sets of instruments to enable them to provide limited dental care for others. 

Most recently, Drew’s program was awarded a Rotary Global Grant in the amount of $116,000 and the services provided – previously 98% extractions – are moving toward restorative care.  Another recent improvement is 4 clinics are now digitized.

Special thanks to BJ Cox and Phil Hall who have committed to donating $100 a month for the next 18 months to Drew's project.

“Come join us,” Drew invited.  “You will love the experience and the people and I will promise you a miracle a day.”

Monday, April 11, 2016

Vacation Advice from Whata Deal Travel

Today’s speaker was Warren Gourdeau of Whata Deal Travel.  Travel is responsible for some of life’s most memorable moments, said the enthusiastic travel agent for more than 20 years of “meeting or beating the prices of most internet travel sites and advertisements.”  Specializing in all-inclusive resorts (his hands-down favorite Caribbean destination is Sandals, followed by Palace and Charisma … but there are dozens of such sites) and cruises, he gave some good travel advice including:

·      *  Allow yourself a minimum of 2 ½ - 3 hours for layover in between international flights
·      *  SLC is the best place to go through customs
·      *  Research the cost and weight of baggage when traveling internationally
·      *  A global entry pass makes life a whole lot easier for frequent international travelers
·      *  European rail trains provide an excellent vacation experience … but you can’t purchase before 90 days ahead
·      *  Passports needed for international travel must not have an expiration date within 6 months of your vacation plans.

For more information, see or call Warren Gourdeau at 801-860-8536.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

New Members and the Police Chief

From left:  Jim Coleman, sponsor for Ace Robison; Jennifer Robison;
new members Paul Tikalsky (also sponsored by Jim Coleman)  and Gregg McArthur and sponsor Durant McArthur.

St. George Police Chief Marlon Stratton shared the details of keeping the community safe from crime noting his force of 106 officers, including 12 in area schools, are an outstanding law enforcement team. According to the department's highest ranking authority, "It is the mission of the St. George Police Department to work with the citizens of our community to preserve life, maintain human rights, protect property, and promote individual responsibility and community commitment."

Despite the SGPD's stellar efforts, "there is a lot of negative rhetoric around the county about our performance."  The department is seeing an increase in "suicide by cop" and drugs are a big problem, particularly heroin which has a "100% markup" since it is easy to get and inexpensive.  The chief noted the city is divided into 7 districts with the area with the highest crime rate is "downtown, followed by the Dixie Downs / Sunset area and finally Bloomington Hills ... while Bloomington / SunRiver communities are considered the safest."  

Chief Stratton reminded members of SGR to resist the need to answer cell phone calls, dial numbers and carry on lengthy conversations while behind the wheel ... and to slow down and pay attention when driving. Traffic is a big one!"