President Kim opened meeting with Pledge of Allegiance and introduced our speaker, District Governor Suzanne Uhl-Melanson. 
Before DG Suzanne spoke, Jane Lafleur gave the Thought of the Day, which was a poem by Kathleen O’Hara called “And People Stayed Home”:
“And people stayed home
and read books and listened
and rested and exercised
and made art and played
and learned new ways of being
and stopped
and listened deeper
someone meditated
someone prayed
someone danced
someone met their shadow
and people began to think differently
and people healed
and in the absence of people who lived in ignorant ways,
dangerous, meaningless and heartless,
even the earth began to heal
and when the danger ended
and people found each other
grieved for the dead people
and they made new choices
and dreamed of new visions
and created new ways of life
and healed the earth completely
just as they were healed themselves.”
DG Suzanne spoke to West Bay about her travels to Guatemala for the District Global Grant project in 2019/2020, concerning Chronic Malnutrition.  This project targets women and children, and due to early funding the project was able to get started prior to full approval by RI of grant funding. DG Suzanne indicated that there will likely be 2 more similar grants over the coming 3 years.
DG Suzanne shared her slide presentation of the stove construction projects being built in the cooking huts of homes in the village of Pavit. The grant funds are being used to pay for the stone masons and materials for stove construction, with the labor performed by local Rotarians and villagers. DG Suzanne also indicated that she and her group also visited Simajhuleu, which is a larger village where other stove projects had been completed.  In this village, there is a training program for women involved with health promotion, where they are being trained in growing vegetables, food preparation and proper nutrition.
After DG Suzanne’s presentation and questions from West Bay Rotarians, Sandy Cox provided a status report on the Midcoast Rotarians initiative (, which involves several area Rotary clubs, in addition to West Bay.  The initiative is a clearing house for identifying information, making donations, and seeking help or assistance.  Sandy indicated that there has been an initial surge of requests, but things have calmed this week, though the team expects an increase in requests for assistance over the coming weeks.
Sandy, President Kim Milton and John Viehman then discussed the newest project for West Bay Rotary, called the WBR Matching Challenge. West Bay has pledged up to $5000, to match donations made on the specific West Bay Rotary site on the United Midcoast Charities Rapid Response Fund website. In the first three days, over $3200 of the $5000 has been pledged by a number of West Bay Rotarians, and there is hope that each West Bay Rotarian will strongly consider pledging some funds, given the matching feature. Deborah Fink identified that there are articles now published in the PenBay Pilot, Bangor Daily News and Village Soup now, with forthcoming articles in the Free Press and Camden Gazette.
Lisa Dresser reminded those in the meeting to begin collecting their pile of donations for the upcoming Yard Sale project at the MRC later this summer.
Next week’s meeting speaker is State Representative Vicki Doudera.
We will again send an email to all West Bay Rotarians and any identified guests prior to next week’s meeting.