NEXT MEETING: January 22, 2015

Sharing Abundance with People in Need: the White Pony Express Story

If you’ve looked around the community of Richmond and elsewhere in Contra Costa County, you must have noticed that there are pockets of poverty and hunger. Did you know that for years 30-40 percent of the food in grocery stores had to be thrown away rather than given to hungry and homeless people? The problem has been distribution – how to get the large abundance to those in most need.

White Pony Express, an all-volunteer organization founded only two years ago, has begun to change that picture. They have rescued over 2 million pounds of fresh, even perishable food from about 100 generous donors, and distributed it to 60,000 people through 50+ nonprofit groups, within less than 24 hours of receipt.

Gary Conner, Executive Director of WPE, will describe how this award-winning program grew from two volunteers using their own cars, to over 400, with a fleet of donated vans and trucks.

MEETING OF January 15, 2015

Welcome

PP Jon “Kahuna” Lawlis filled in for Prez Alan who was away because of the passing of his wife’s sister. Condolences to Alan, Geri and the family. David Cole led us in the Pledge and Herb Cole offered a prayer for freedom, peace and justice. Sid Chauvin offered the thought, “If you want a real friend you can trust in Washington, get a dog!” Harry Truman

Visiting Rotarians and Guests

  • Connie Tritt had as her guest Susan Romero
  • Mike Winter’s guest was Jim Findley a member of Mike’s SIR group.

Announcements

 

  • Richmond Rotary Crab Feed will be on February 6 at Salesian High School. $45/ticket. Let’s sell the joint out and make some money. This is one of our biggest fundraisers.
  • Herb Cole invited anyone interested to join him and other Rotarians in the Wheel Chair program happening 3/30-4/3. Contact Herb if you are interested.
  • David Brown announced that Rotary will be part of a Day of Service in the Parchester community on 4/9 (mark it in your calendar) where we will be responsible for assisting 36 homeowners
  • Jim Young‘s health took a sudden turn for the worst, we were informed by Tom Waller. Messages of support are welcome. You can email Linda, Jim’s wife, at zmom@comcast.net, or get updates and send messages through the Caring Bridge website, at http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/jimyoung2

 

Recognitions

Happy and Sad Dollars

Norm’s Nonsense

PROGRAM

Hack the Hood: Community & Tech for Richmond Youth

Stacey Street introduced our guest speaker Susan Mernit, CEO and Co-Founder of Hack the Hood. Started in 2013 the program involves low-income youth ages 16-25 of color learning tech by helping small businesses. By the end of 2015, 210 low-income youth will have provided $1.6 million in free websites and online visibility to 300 small businesses. Recruiting the youth is the easy part. Getting small businesses involved is the most difficult part of the program. The program is a 6 week immersion program where the youth get hands on experience in creating websites and learning entrepreneurial skills. This past summer Hack the Hood worked with the RYSE Center in Richmond and hopes to expand to include 7 partners in the coming year. If you would like more information or to get involved you can contact Susan at susan@hackthehood.org.


- The Menehune , Rotating Editor