East Bay Rotaract
Below we attempt to summarize the activities by East Bay Rotaract from roughly July through December, 2012. Berkeley Rotary sponsors two Rotaract clubs, East Bay Rotaract and Cal Rotaract. East Bay Rotaract basically is for young adults, aged 21-30, who are working or in grad school. They have recently changed their policy and are now open to members who are on community or college campuses lacking campus Rotaract clubs or young adults working under age 21 who have not gone on to college. If you know a young adult looking for an opportunity to do service and find fellowship, invite them to check out East Bay Rotaract. If you're ever looking yourself for a hands-on service project to participate in on an unscheduled weekend, either of our two Rotaract clubs would love for you to join them. You can monitor their upcoming events at their websites: www.eastbayrotaract.org Ah, to be that young and energetic again!
East Bay Rotaract ranges between 15- 25 paid members as well as other young working post-college adults in their listserve network who occasionally come out for service projects or social events. It came into existence three years ago, being formed by graduating leaders of the Cal and Davis Rotaract clubs, but has only been officially chartered two years. They meet twice a month, including at least one meeting with speakers, and sponsor service projects and social events many weekends each month.
They were set up with the sponsorship of our club to serve all of District 5160 and the East Bay, not just Berkeley. Thus, they have members who live as far north as Richmond and south as Fremont, as west as San Francisco and east as San Ramon/Danville. They are the only community-based (older post-college) Rotaract club in District 5160, although some others may be chartering soon. Indeed, as some of their original members have moved south and out of our District, they have already formed two new Rotaract clubs in Fremont and Sunnyvale. We have also encouraged East Bay Rotaract to work with Rotary and Rotaract clubs all over, They have been invited to join in working at fundraisers in Danville, San Ramon, San Leandro and other Rotary clubs, where their work helps build the EBR treasury for EBR's own projects.
Our desire, and something incoming President Phil Henry is giving special attention to, is that as EB Rotaracters achieve job stability or reach age 30 and beyond, we make it an easy path for them into Rotary - whether with Berkeley or whatever Rotary club their job and residence takes them to.
East Bay Rotaracters work side by side with Berkeley Rotarians on many of our Rotary club's projects - e.g.at the Kite Festival (where we provide fun for 30,000 by managing parking and transit), the Solano Stroll booth and parade, and the Berkeley Streets booth, and packing food baskets for Berkeley's poorest families at Thanksgiving. Indeed, they come out for most of our club projects.
BUT they do much more on their own initiative. Club members were aware and some came to their successful fundraiser at an Oakland restaurant to help finance setting up a chicken/egg producing business at an Ethiopian orphanage for girls; that orphanage needed to find a way to sustain themselves financially so they could keep serving the children of those who died with AIDs. But East Bay Rotaract since the summer has engaged in many other service projects. Since June, 2012, they
o participated in an AIDS fundraising walk in Golden Gate Park
o assisted Cal Rotaract in the Great WAPI Build, the service experience for the 300 Japanese students that came to Cal from high schools destroyed in the Japanese earthquake/tsunami last year.
o staged a games night for the children at the Elizabeth House in Oakland that serves battered women;
o served food and generally were employed by San Leandro Rotary Club for a casino fundraiser
o worked on houses and nonprofit facilities with Rebuilding Together of Oakland.
o financed the acquisition of a Shaken Baby training doll and donated it to the Brighter Beginnings clinic serving new young parents in Richmond
o assisting the Vision Health Society in San Francisco in screening disadvantaged children and adults for vision problems.
o went to the training as a group for volunteers for the Rotacare clinic in Richmond, our club is helping found with the other BARSHEEP clubs
In addition, they party. They have had a Games Night in Chinatown of Oakland, had a happy hour starting at 6 pm at Make Westing, held a golf event and dinner social (bringing in a San Ramon Rotarian as a golfing instructor), been guests at the Mid-Autumn Chinese Festival staged by the Chinese Consul's office in San Francisco, and been the invitees of the San Ramon Rotary for a club dinner meeting.