by Chris Waugh

District 5110’s first Satellite Club formed at the Springs Retirement Community in Eugene after several Southtowne members moved there. Since they chartered in January 2020, they’ve grown from 10 to 15 members. The secret to their growth has been to invite non-Rotarian residents to help with their volunteer projects.

They hold regular meetings twice a month, and maintain physical distance. At this time, no outside visitors are allowed. One new member earned his Paul Harris Award already! They focus on service. Before COVID, they hosted a performance about the “shortcut” some Oregon settlers took off the Oregon trail. At that event, they passed the hat and raised $750 for a scholarship.

They have collected 50 bags of recyclable bottles – even getting the Springs Pub to join the effort – to support a tiny home project. They stuffed reading books in school bags for local kids. With the onset of COVID, though, they really stepped into action. To support the Southtowne Emergency Food Box project, they filled hundreds of small containers of hand sanitizer to add to the boxes. They made small packages out of industrial sized containers of chili pepper, paprika, oregano and other spices to distribute in those food boxes. And they approved a Christmas tree project to assist families, including all the Springs residents.

Since the wildfire situation east of Eugene, they responded to people who have been displaced. They collected almost 200 bags of clothing and necessary supplies and took them to the evacuation sites. They produced a promotional flyer to let residents know about their club, and have a new application or two in the works at this time.

Once the COVID era has passed, we’d invite you to stop in for a visit – or a make-up. The Springs meets
on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month at 4pm.