The Rotary Club of Excelsior and its Board of Directors met on Election Day, Tuesday, November 3rd via Zoom.  Prior to the Club Meeting the Board met at 11:00.  Notable actions include:
  1. Club meeting to continue on Zoom.
  2. Declined to sponsor Lake Street Business with AM Club.
  3. Molly Swenson has resigned as Social Director.
  4. Speakers needed-Kate will send out an appeal.
  5. Jim Greshem has resigned from Club.
  6. All STRIVE Scholarships have been paid and we are in good financial condition.
  7. Board is exploring giving scholarships like with MAD this year without there being STRIVE.
  8. Bell Ringing on Tuesday, Nov. 17th – sign-up will be sent to members.
  9. Resource West – Gloves, boots, hats and coats in full swing.
  10. Member Survey to pick color of Club shirts today.
  11. Need for serious discussion on member recruitment – this is a great time to get new members.
Our speaker on November 3rd was Kim Bowman from Way to Grow.  Don Draayer gave the intro and stressed that Way to Grow is the best non-profit out there that emphasizes early child learning and health with parenting support and services. 
Kim bowman is also a member of Rotary #9 our largest club in District 5950 and knows Rotary well.  She is the Director of Major & Planned Giving for the Way to Grow Organization.  She stated that the mission of Way to Grow is, “Working closely with parents and communities, we ensure that children within the most isolated families are born healthy, stay healthy and are prepared for school.”  It was the brain child of Don Fraser back in 1989 and is a 501c3 with 4 million in funding coming from some government and mostly private donations. 
The program stresses that the parent is primary to a child’s learning.  They equip parents in how to aid children’s learning and health with wrap-around services by 20 family educators to isolated families with children from birth to 8 years of age.  Kim notes that 80% of intellectual development happens in the first year of life and their Parent and Teacher Curriculum helps parents to use effective parenting skills both in the mental and physical health of their child.   The great thing about the family educators are that they are matched to the family’s culture and race reaching out to whites, blacks, Hispanic, and Indian families.  Their slogan “Great by Eight” demonstrates their efforts to have all the children in their service reading by 3rd grade.  They have some 1,737 clients and their success rates are all in the high ninety percepts for healthy births, reading readiness, non-repeat of teen pregnancies and involvement in Parent-Teacher Conferences.  Kim concluded her remarks by pitching our club that their program has proven results and that the way to make a significant difference that lasts over generations is by donations to Way to Grow.  Kim then took lots of Q&A’s from members.  This was a fascinating program and one that our club should make a charitable donation to.
The meeting ended with our new model of Happy Bucks where members can pledge a donation and Lou Graber will add it to the next quarters billing.  We raised lots of Happy Bucks today that will go to our scholarship fund!