September 2018 District Bulletin

From the Governor's Desk
Rotary days: People of action

Would you like a day designated to celebrating all that is Rotary?  What about a day to invite non-Rotarians to learn more about Rotary?  Would you enjoy a special day for our clubs to be united in action, being the inspiration? You’re in luck! April 27th, 2019 will be just that day. Rotary Days: People of Action, is a day designated in Rotary District 5400 to celebrate and illustrate who we are – people of action, doing good in the world. 

If your club would like to participate in this one-day event, begin planning now to participate in a manner that works best for your club.  Here are some ideas to help with planning:

  • Rotary International President Barry Rassin has asked Rotarians to continue the work that Past Rotary International President Ian Risely started – planting trees for environmental sustainability.  If your club wanted to utilize this service project as the base for the day of service, you could:

    • Plant more trees or shrubs
    • Install a watering system for a prior project
  • Jill Skeem, Twin Falls Rotarian, suggested a Rotary Works Day.  The club identifies several projects throughout the community, and solicits Rotarians and non-Rotarians to fulfill these community needs, coming back in the afternoon to celebrate together.
  • Utilize an existing service project and plan for it to take place on April 27th, if possible.
  • Design a service project that is specific to your community!

Some points to consider in planning:

  • How will you include families and non-Rotarians?
  • How could you collaborate with other Rotary, Rotaract, and/or Interact Clubs in your region?
  • How will you incorporate fun and social time into your event?
  • How will you promote this event before, during and after?  Be sure to use the hashtag, #rotarydays on all social media, and post your event on Rotary Showcase.

Let’s unite in celebrating who we are, and what we accomplish on April 27th.  The world is watching, and they need more inspiration… we’re the right people of action for the job!

Jennifer Deroin, '18-'19 D5400 Governor

The Rotary Club of East Idaho Falls hosted a Rotary Family barbecue event at the home of Paul and Loa Jenkins. Club President Jonathan Coles awarded several Paul Harris Fellows that evening to members and a delicious meal was enjoyed by all!

From left: Loa Jenkins, Jonathan Coles, and Paul Jenkins

aberdeen's community needs assessment

The Rotary Club of Aberdeen had one of those problems that’s “a good problem to have”.  They have money, but they weren’t sure where to spend it. They wanted the money to be used for its best and highest use, but they hadn’t come up with an answer yet.  The solution?  A community needs assessment.  President Stephen Love organized a “Town Hall Meeting”, inviting other community partners to join in and give feedback.
The assessment started with an inventory of the great resources the community has.  Next, they identified opportunities for improvement utilizing a rapid brainstorming process that facilitates input from everyone in the room.  As ideas were shared, they were grouped into like categories, identifying themes. 
Each of the theme areas was discussed as a group, by answering two questions:
  1. Why is this important?
  2. Is this something we can impact?
After the discussion was finished, each person in the room voted with the use of sticker dots. As is often the case in this process, a majority winner emerges.  If not, a secondary vote may be done using sticker dots of another color with the top round one picks.
The result? The Rotary Club of Aberdeen is going to launch a downtown and neighborhood beautification project. They will partner with the City, the Chamber, and downtown businesses.  Why does this matter?  They want to drive more economic development to their community, while also creating a sense of community pride.  And just maybe, others may decide they want to join this club that unites people, exchanges ideas, and takes action to create lasting change. Well done Aberdeen – you are the inspiration!

Jennifer Deroin, '18-'19 D5400 Governor

World Polio Day: Oct 24

World Polio Day will be celebrated on polio vaccine pioneer Jonas Salk's birthday, October 24, 2018.  Visit for information about the 5:30-6:30PM (CST) live-stream and how to plan and register your club's World Polio Day event! 

What is your club’s event?  Please contact district PolioPlus co-chairs Mary Reiman or Lisa Armijo to share how you’re planning to raise funds or awareness of Rotary’s polio eradication campaign. Some examples are Emmett’s Pins for Polio, Blue Lakes-Twin Falls’ Pints for Polio, Boise Metro’s Ride to End Polio or the district’s Stomp Out Polio shoe campaign.

RI’s '18-'19 goal for PolioPlus fundraising is $1500/club.  That's an unrealistic and unreasonable metric in a district whose club’s range in size from 5 members to 143. I prefer to look at the “ask” as $37.29/capita across the district. Each club has set its own PolioPlus goal, and I encourage you all to meet or exceed your goal. D5400 Rotarians gave almost $35/capita last fiscal year, yet only 24 of our clubs achieved its goals. If we do what we’ve done in the past and those clubs that didn’t make their goals last year make a more concerted effort this year, we WILL meet the RI benchmark.  Pocatello Portneuf has done that already, having contributed $45 per member.  Thank you!

18 cases since January in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Rotarian contributions to The Rotary Foundation for PolioPlus are matched 2:1 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Marianne Barker, District Foundation Chair

Ken Howell at One Rotary Center in Evanston meeting with Past RI President John Germ, Past RI Director Richard Hall, Past RI Director Mike McGovern, and End Polio Now Coordinators Rocky Jacobs, Carol Toomey, Pat Killoran, Marcelo Haik and Peggy Asseo, RI Director of Campaigns.


rev for rotary

Don't wait for you car registration renewal to order your Rotary license plate!
  1.  Purchase your Rotary license plate from the DMV anytime during your current year and receive the remaining months credit toward your new Rotary plate

  2. The net premium from the sale of the Rotary license plate will be rebated to the two districts and divided by the number of plates sold in their  district. Monies received from the plate program will be spent on projects within the state of Idaho

  3. To keep this program, we need to maintain 1,000 plates by 2021 and thereafter

human trafficking in your backyard

This is a call to action for all our Rotary members.  The first step in combating human trafficking is to recognize the signs. 

As a child growing up in a small Texas town that bordered Mexico, I learned quickly that no one is safe. Ever. Going to the corner store for my mom every day was my job. One sunny day in an otherwise quiet summer, I was almost abducted stepping out of the store. A man with a large burlap sack was waiting for me. My hands held coke bottles in each hand. I felt him behind me as I was grazed by the burlap sack. I turned my head quickly to see it going down and back up, ready to go over my head. I ran. I ran fast. I didn’t scream. I didn’t drop the cokes and when I got home, I didn’t tell my mom. It would be 17 years later when I would finally tell her of my horrifying experience.  She asked me why I didn’t tell her. I told her I didn’t know. I know enough about Psychology to know that sometimes we are so afraid we hide things in our mind and pretend everything is fine. It’s the only way we have to deal with facing the world after terrifying experiences.

Women, children and even men that are thrown into human trafficking are not always chained in a dark room in order to feel like prisoners that can’t escape. They are manipulated, they are broken down into remnants of human beings so that they feel like prisoners in their own minds. It’s like installing an invisible fence around them.

Traffickers know how to use so many tactics to lure their victims. “They use attention, gifts and professions of friendship and love, many are normal children smitten with what looks like courtship, others are endangered runaways badly in need of shelter and food.” According to the US Department of Justice. “Drugs and alcohol are frequently employed to keep child sex workers compliant, converting healthy kids into addicts or worsening problems for youths already tripped up by the lure.”

Metropolitan police departments are cracking down on human trafficking so the push for the sex traffickers is to move their operations to smaller communities, where police might not have the resources to combat the problem.

We need to be able to recognize the signs; one common sign is that the person often is in the company of someone to whom he or she defers. Someone else is always in control of the situation. We need to educate ourselves in order to identify the victims.  I suggest that we start talking about it.  That we learn as much as possible and then pass it on to our fellow Rotarians, from there, we educate as many people as possible working with the Police Departments. View other signs here.

We all have a role to play in combating human trafficking.

  • Call 1-866-DHS-2-ICE (1-866-347-2423) to report suspicious criminal activity.
  • Submit a tip at - highly trained specialists take reports from both the public and law enforcement agencies
  • Text 233733 to get help if you are a victim of human trafficking.

It’s time to stop Human Traffickers!

Aurora Schuring, Baker City Rotary

pre-order v2.0

"RYLA is inspiring. 80+ young adults came to us on Thursday with nothing to say besides "Hello, my name is...", and within 72 hours they are talking about hope for the future, believing in each other, helping others, growing together, and changing the world."


'18 RYLArian

navigating clubrunner

Rotary District 5400's website helps Rotarians stay current with district information through messages and updates from the District Governor. Governor Deroin’s current message discusses Rotary’s September theme of Basic Literacy and Education and includes suggestions of projects clubs can take on to promote this theme. Information on specific programs like RYLA and Interact, as well as district and global grants is available under the programs tab. 

The club directory is one of the most helpful yet underused features of the D5400 website. It lists alphabetically by name every club in our district along with the current president, meeting day and place. You can easily find it on the homepage listed under District Info or by clicking here. 

For a deeper level of access to information like membership, log into the website by clicking Member Login in the upper-right corner of the home page. All D5400 Rotarians have a login. If you don’t remember your username or password, both are easily retrievable by clicking the "Forgot log in name?" or "Forgot password"? links provided in the login screen. If this doesn't work, email Michela for help.

Using your login connects you to information available only to D5400 Rotarians, like archived leadership workshops, a membership satisfaction survey, membership number reports and short videos from district leadership. While logged in, you may also contribute your own content to features like the upcoming events calendar. For a deeper dive into ClubRunner, schedule a 1:1 with Michela.

Amy Campbell, D5400 Trainer

Governor Jennifer Deroin and LobsterFest mascot Karl Klokke of Boise Sunrise getting ready to put on their bibs and enjoy an evening of fun and food.

The dangers of stereotype labels

Occasionally I hear words used to describe segments of prospective Rotarians that can be dangerous when we’re working to create clubs that are inclusive. In today’s world, we hear a lot about “generational differences”. Studies tell us this is based upon environmental influences. While I subscribe to this, I also believe that the human being hasn’t had a “software update” since we began traversing this earth. 
While we have certainly evolved and the world moves faster, I believe that what motivates us was the same in the 1950s, as it is in 2018;  we want what’s best for our families, we have a longing to connect with other people, we have dreams and aspirations about our future, and we want the world to be a better place. We might go about it differently, but the motivation remains the same.
I don’t think it’s uncommon, no matter what decade it is, for older generations to look at younger generations, shaking their head. Dismay regarding choices from fashions, to music, to hobby interests, to professional aspirations, may create misperceptions. It can be easy to fall into the trap of, “If they’re not doing it like me, they’re doing it wrong”. 
When we say things like, “Millennials don’t like to join and give their time”, or “Those older Rotarians just want to come to lunch”, we create a divide. We create an environment where we say, “it’s not ok if you’re not like me”.
In my Rotary travels, I certainly have learned one thing; regardless of cultural differences, religious differences, gender differences, or age differences - we are more alike than we are different.   
When it comes to those generational differences, let’s remember that words matter. Let’s choose to allow Rotarians of all ages to define their own engaging Rotary experience, in their current season of life, without judgement. Let’s choose curiosity, let’s choose understanding, and let’s choose kindness.
Jennifer Deroin, '18-'19 D5400 Governor

polio Eradication update

One new case in Afghanistan (Kandahar province) and two cVDPV cases in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  This brings us to 18 wild polio virus cases for the year, and 43 cVDPV cases for the year. 

As Rotarians, we take pride in the many accomplishments of our fight to eradicate polio.  And we have had tremendous success, by any measure, in that fight.  Yet even with the few wild polio virus cases existing today, we are rushing to win this fight for another reason:  cVDPV cases still occur due to poor immunization rates in the afflicted communities, or to immunocompromised populations.  In these conditions, the virus remaining from the oral polio vaccine can last long enough in the community to mutate back into a paralytic form.  This isn’t to say that the vaccinations cause the paralytic cVDPV cases, but a transition to the injectable vaccinations is simply not an option in many areas where the wild polio virus remains endemic.  Our supply systems and cold chain is stretched as it is to keep up with the storage and transit requirements of the oral polio vaccinations.  Add to those requirements for the injectable form the considerable additional efforts of training a workforce to give injections and manage clean and antiseptic conditions for the equipment, and the process becomes orders of magnitude more difficult.

Instructive to this consideration is the case of David Salamone, who recently died in the US at age 28.  David was one of the last cases of polio in the United States.  David was born with an immune deficiency called Bruton agammaglobulinemia, and he was particularly susceptible to many infections and disorders, including polio.  View the complete story here.

David’s case ultimately caused the United States to switch from the oral polio vaccination to the injectable form; since January 1, 2000, the only polio vaccine used in the United States has been the IPV form.  Based on the metrics in the US at that time, the switch cost an additional $3 million for every case of polio it prevented.  That cost would be radically inflated if applied to the rest of the world today.

Right now, this consideration is mainly academic for our efforts, as we simply don’t have the resources in place to switch from OPV to IPV around the world.  But that day may be coming, and soon, as we continue to battle the few remaining holdouts of wild polio virus.

So as we remember David Salamone, we also should consider our own commitment to the eradication of polio, and the significantly increased cost which may be required to ultimately “drop to Zero” for wild polio virus cases around the world.  We’ve had the commitment to wage this fight as long as we have, and we should embrace the commitment to switch to IPV if necessary to get this job done. 

Your contributions, your advocacy and your commitment is what will lead us to victory in this fight.  Thanks to you for all you do!

The Final Three Endemic Countries:

Pakistan:  No new Polio cases reported this week. Four Polio cases reported in 2018 - the most recent case was from Sarki Tetara District, Charsada Province with an onset of paralysis on 8/01/18.  Eight cases reported in 2017.  No new Polio-Positive Environmental Samples were reported this week in Pakistan. 

Afghanistan: One new Polio case reported this week.  Fourteen Polio cases reported in 2018 - the most recent case was from the Kandahar District & Province with the onset of paralysis on 08/11/18.  Fourteen cases reported in 2017.  No new Polio-Positive Environmental Samples were reported this week in Afghanistan.

Nigeria: No Wild Polio cases have been reported in 2017 or 2018.   The most recent Polio case was reported on 8/20/16.  On 8/20/18, Nigeria celebrated 2 years without a Wild Polio case! 

Ken Howell, PDG District 5400 ’15-16, Zone 27 End Polio Now Coordinator

Upcoming Events
District Membership Zoom Call-January
Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android:
Jan 08, 2019
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
President Elect Sack Lunch Zoom Meeting
Jan 11, 2019
12:00 PM – 12:45 PM
Fireside Chat - Option #1
Zoom Meeting - See Details in Notes
Jan 12, 2019
8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
District Celebration Committee Mtg
Jan 17, 2019
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Fireside Chat - Option #2
Zoom Meeting - See Details in Notes
Jan 19, 2019
8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Pets & Rotary Leadership Summit Planning Meeting
Jan 22, 2019
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Rotary News
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