The Rotary Club Of Festival City

President:  Dianne Yundt

Minutes of the meeting of March 12, 2013

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Club website:

This week’s meeting was chaired by President-Elect Bill Helmuth.

Guests: Jennifer Gritke is the guest speaker.

Draw Prize: Wayne Young won the prize donated by Carolyn Dingman.


  1. Area 3 Meeting: Bill Helmuth reported on the recent meeting. 90% of the funds going to the Rotary Foundation are used for programs. The average donation to the RF in area 3 is $163 per Rotarian. The highest donation worldwide is $173 by Taiwanese Rotarians. Membership in District 6330 is declining but the number of Rotaract clubs is increasing. Rotaract clubs should serve as a source for future Rotarians over the age of the 30. The Stratford Rotary Club reported a membership of 139, an increase of 8 this year. The Stratford club is also hosting its first Skype meeting. The district conference will be June 6 in Sarnia.
  2. The Spaghetti Dinner Cupcakes: Jean Aitcheson updated preparations for next Monday`s event. The signup sheet for making cupcakes was circulated again. Anyone who has not signed up for cupcakes but wishes to bake a dozen or so should contact Jean. Cupcakes are to be delivered to the ANAF Hall on Monday.
  3. Spaghetti Dinner Food Preparation Saturday: This begins at 1 PM at the Black Angus in St Marys. Assistance from 6 people is required. Contact Jean if you can help for about 3 hours.
  4. Spaghetti Dinner Volunteers: A signup sheet for various tasks on Monday was circulated.  Those helping setup in the hall or in the kitchen should report to the ANAF Hall around 2:30 PM. If you have not signed up for a job please contact Jean. Jobs include plating food, assisting with food preparation in the kitchen, clearing tables, selling El Salvador coffee, selling tickets at the door, selling 50/50 tickets and other jobs.
  5. Premium El Salvador Coffee. Lynne Ternosky has 1lb bags of coffee for a donation of $15. Both ground coffee and beans are available. Enough coffee has been sold to date to cover the cost of the coffee and all future sales will be put towards projects.

Guest Speaker: Bill Helmuth introduced Jennifer Gritke the Regional Coordinator for the HIV/AIDS Connection based in London. Jennifer is here tell us about the organization. HIV/AIDS Connection serves six counties surrounding London.

The agency provides education and outreach to all parts of the community. Whether it’s in a bar, bath house, online, on the phone, at a display booth, or in schools the organization will direct inquirers to the services it provides.

Other activities of HIV/AIDS Connection include the County Cupboard Food Bank. 80% of the food bank’s clients live below the poverty line. The agency also hosts social events like a holiday dinner at Christmas, a spring picnic, retreats and various support groups.

Although the services are free they are only partly funded by the Provincial government making fund raising a necessity. The agency’s annual “A Taste For Life” event takes place April 24 and involves about 40 restaurants of which 5 are in Stratford. 25% of a customer’s bill is donated to the agency. Look for upcoming promotions for this event.  The agency also hosts the “Aids Walk For Life”. Last year it raised $35000.

Jennifer also provided information about the nature of the disease and its prevalence in the world. About 34 million people have HIV/AIDS and there are about 1.7 million deaths from AIDS each year. AIDS is the advanced form of HIV. Due to medicines developed to fight the disease few people in the developed world now develop AIDS. About 30% of people living with HIV/AIDS don’t know it. Jennifer strongly recommends that everyone should get tested.

For more complete information about HIV/AIDS and the agency visit

Jennifer was thanked by Louise Spandler.