PARADISE ROTARY TAKES TOP HONORS
The Rotary Club of Paradise is part of a very large District extending from the Oregon Border to Berkeley. It is one of the largest districts in terms of both geographical size and number of Clubs. It boasts membership of seventy one (71) Clubs. Each year, around this time, the District holds an Awards Dinner, where outstanding Clubs and individual Rotarians are recognized for their efforts during the past year.
The top honor that any Club can receive is the Cliff Dochterman Spirit of Rotary Award, named after Cliff Dochterman, a living legend in Rotary, whose name alone represents all that Rotary stands for, locally, and globally. It is a perpetual honor bestowed on a Club each year which emulates all that Rotary represents. The Club receiving this award has displayed the best of “Service Above Self”, the Rotary motto, as well as friendship, fellowship, and displaying the highest of ethical standards with Peace and Understanding locally and around the world.
This year, that award was bestowed upon The Rotary Club of Paradise. Under the leadership of Dean Fender, President for this past year, the Club made several major contributions to our local community, as well as internationally. It started with the Bille Park children’s playground renovation. This was a $50,000.00 project in partnership with the Paradise Recreation and Park District, under the leadership of Mike Trinca, himself a Rotarian. Rotary, locally, and with the assistance of a District grant, contributed $20,000.00 to the project and assisted in the final stages. The children’s park has been renamed The Paradise Rotary Playground.
In the past, Rotary provided each third grader, with a beautiful hardbound dictionary. With the advent of the computer world, the dictionary became less effective, and so we combined the cost of that project with funds we used each year for limited teacher grants, and this year were able to give each 5th grade classroom, funds to purchase something useful for the classroom. The funds had to be spent on something tangible, sustainable, and for direct student use. This will be an ongoing project yearly, this next year devoted to the 4th grade and on down each successive year.
On an international level, Paradise Rotary has partnered with The Chico Rotary Club and several other district clubs in an international project in Tanzania, to provide potable water to its inhabitants. This is a several year and thousands of dollars project, in which Paradise Rotary has been financially very supportive.
Further, Paradise Rotary took a leadership role in raising money for District Governor Laura Days’ Kenya Smiles project, where, with the help of funds raised, is purchasing and providing Kenya children with dental packets and hands on instruction on how to care for their teeth.
A Paul Harris Fellow is an honor bestowed on a Rotarian who has contributed $1000.00 toward the Rotary Foundation. It is rare to see a Rotary Club with 100 per cent Paul Harris membership. Under the leadership of Kathy Maxwell and Bob DiPietro, both very active members of Paradise Rotary, this Club reached 100% Paul Harris Fellows this year. This represents approximately 80 Rotarians who have reached this level.
Paradise Rotary is extremely proud of receiving the top award, represented by a traveling banner, which will remain with Paradise Rotary and prominently displayed for the entire year at its meetings, and, perhaps in years to come as well, depending on how well we do in the future. Paradise Rotary is composed of community leaders, who don’t know the word “failure”. It is for that reason that Paradise Rotary is so well known for having so much fun while serving the local and global community.