Posted by Carl Gerhardt
On June 9, 2020, the members of the Magnolia Rotary Club met online via Zoom to discuss internal topics. Pictured above from left to right and top to bottom are: Billy Riley, Carl Gerhardt, Hugh Fullerton, Chase Hogan, Janice Thigpen, Real Provencher, Richard Allison, Frank Parker, Hope Moye, Glenn Buckley, and Barbara Provencher.
Janice Thigpen told everyone that the board had increased the funds for our Rotary Scholarships from the $5,000 budgeted to $6,000. This will allow the scholarship committee to provide scholarships to everyone they wanted to give one to.
Janice also reminded everyone that the District Conferences are mostly being held on Monday nights around 7:00PM starting 06/08/2020. Not sure when the next one is but check the district site for more information. Real Provencher told everyone that the International Conference will also be held online in the near future but dates and time have not yet been set.
Janice also asked Carl Gerhardt to check with Leland Duskin about the remaining Mike Ogg Scholarships that have not yet been paid out to everyone as promised. Carl agreed to check further with Leland.
Real Provencher spoke to the membership about the efforts that have been made to allow the club to have true "Hybrid" meetings that allow for both speakers and the membership to attend meetings from anywhere in the world as well as in the club's usual physical meeting place at the MISD event center (at the same time). Real pointed out:
  • One trial meeting has been held so far in which several issues were found. Another trial meeting will be held later this week,
  • Some additional equipment will need to be purchased such as a camera, microphones and cables. Real estimated around $300 for this.
  • We will also need either a used MacBook Pro or a similar computer. Real estimated around $1,000 to purchase one unless someone donates one. On that note, Real pointed out that Kelly McDonald is checking with someone she knows at the Apple Computer Corporation who might be willing to help our club with this need. Billy Riley might also have a rebuilt computer that could be used.
  • Real pointed out that this capability would open up our club interactively to speakers from all parts of the world.
Real Provencher told everyone that there is a new Sierra Leone project that has sprung up around the COVID-19 issue. It seems that rape, suicide, spousal abuse and other family issues have increased significantly during this time as seen by an almost 300% increase in rape and sexual exploitation since the outbreak of COVID-19. The new project is to set up three 2-hour sessions with children, young adults (up to 25 years old) and parents (over 25 years old) to frankly discuss ways to reduce or eliminate these new social problems. Real indicated that our club has already given quite a bit to Sierra Leone and he asked if anyone in our membership would like to contribute to the around $200 needed for this project to email him and let him know how much they want to give.