Club News

Anil Srivatsa with the Gift of Life Adventure Foundation inc.

Anil Srivatsa and his wife gave a very inspirational talk about the importance of organ donation, misconceptions about the process, and how we can take action within our own lives.

An accomplished business person, Anil’s life changed suddenly six years ago when his brother, a 47-year old neurosurgeon, asked him if he would give him a kidney. Without hesitation, he said yes. He then found the experience changed his life. First, like many of us, he learned that there are many misconceptions about organ donation. He had assumed his life would be diminished after surgery. He was fearful about the surgery, but decided it was the only thing to do. While there is a very small risk with any surgery, he not only has no after effects from it but feels “even healthier and stronger”. Anil asked he do one operation a month for a person who could not pay; his brother promised to do three!

Anil also discovered that over a million adults are waiting for kidneys, so the need is critical. Once tied to a dialysis machine, one in five will die within five years. Once his brother resumed his professional, he asked Anil how he could ever repay him. Armed with this knowledge and the impact his gift had made, Anil decided he needed “to be the change” and devote much of his life to educating others about the importance of donation.

For the last five years, he and his wife have traveled all over the world, sharing their stories and those of other donors. They sleep and travel in their RV. They have visited over 43 countries (Russia being the “hardest to get out of”) and talked face-to-face with over 75,000 people. He also participates in marathons and the worldwide Olympics for Donors/Recipients. This event, set for Houston this year, showcases the talents and determination of thousands of individuals whose lives have been lengthened by participating in donation.

He asked us to not only to spread the word about the importance of donation but to make it clear to our beloveds that we wished “all of our parts” be made available “post life”. Some asked why we had to discuss this if our wishes on our driver’s license was clear. He noted sometimes in some states and entire countries it is NOT enough. In the sorrow, some families recoil and may not be willing to sign off on the procedure(s). They may think you meant only organ donation, not more. He explained how half of all severely visually impaired/blind individuals are under the age of 6 and stressed the importance of eye, skin, and bone donations. It is critical, “while you can”, to be clear in what you what done or not done with your body after death. It literally could change the lives of many others.

Anil and his wife have two children who live in the U.S. Six months of the year, he works full-time for the Gift of Life on the road and runs a business in India the other six months. His brother continues to perform surgeries in India. His goal is to speak to over a million individuals and “we are clearly on our way”. He lauded us for our community service and urged us to “spread the word” about the benefits of donation.

 Anil and Deepali Srivatsa and club president Jeff Revak

Anil and his wife received a huge round of applause. Only in passing did he note that he and his wife relied on donations for their gas money; quite a few members donated as they left the meeting.

A Visit from Representatives of the Armed Forces Heritage Museum

We were privleged to have Bob von Bargen (President Enerrrritus) and Glenn Hyman (Managing Director and Vice President for Major GIfts) from the Armed Forces Heritage Museum attend our meeting this morning.

After breakfast, they shared with a fascinating presitation on the Armed Forces Heritage Museum, a new mobile and virtual military museum for New Jersey.

(l to r)  Bob von Bargen and Glenn Hyman

Its charitable and educational mission is being operated, is to “preserve, interpret, exhibit, and educate all on the rich history, artistry, heritage, and environment of the armed forces on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst”.  The organization is currently in the process of releasing a traveling, educational and multi media 30 foot display trailer which will tell the military history of New Jersey and surrounding regions.

 

 

Ultimate Recipients of Gift Certificates to Provide Holiday Meals for Area Veterans

Donations of Gift Certificates from McCaffrey's Supermarket collections were distributed to

Philadelphia Veterans Administration

Bill Fenimore

Bucks County Veterans Center (Bristol)

Jeff Hoerger

Guardians of the National Cemetery (Washington Crossing)

and

American Legion Post 17 (Yardley)

Bob Craven and Dick Newbert

VFW Post 6393

Irv Perlstein and Russ Davidson

Each of these veteraans organizaiton will, in turn, be distributing these gift certificates to area veterans who have served our nation but fallen on challenging financial times.  These donations both express "Thanks" for their service and hopefully make this year's Christmas season a bit brighter.

 

A Record-setting Day Collecting for Christmas Meals for Area Needy Veterans

With heartful thanks to so many generous shoppers at McCaffrey's Yardley Supermarket

Club members Irv Perlstein, Ira Sherman, Alan Agree, Mark Nath, Steve Manas, Bob Morris, Lou Hatfied, Larry Jaffe and Syd Baron colllected a record $1,463.80 … plus an addiitonal $80 in donated gift certificates … for a grand total of $1,543.80!

Syd Baron

Ira Sherman and Mark Nath

Bob Morris

These monies will be used to purchase gift certificates from McCaffrey's which the Club will they donate to VFW Post 6393, American Legion Posts 137and 148, the Guardians of the National Cemetery in Washington Crossing and the Bucks County Veterans Adminstration Center in Bristol … as these organizations area aware of the most deserving and needy veterans and their families for whom these gift certificates will make a real difference and their Christmases a bit brighter.

For just the second time during the four years of our Club has been collecting to provide these Holiday (Thanksgiving and Christmas) meals for needy veterans who have served our country at home and abroad a donor has anonymously donated a $100.00 bill. 

Over the couse of our four 2019 collections this fall, unselfish shoppers have donated an amazing total of $4,714.10

This brings also brings our four year total collections to just shy of $15,000!

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The Rotary Club of Shady Brook owes a deep sense of gratitude to McCaffrey's (Yardley), Shop-Rite (Lower Makefield) and Colonial Farms (Washington Crossing) without whose cooperation, partnership and willingness to permit our members to solicit funds at their entrances such collection sucesses would not have been possible.

 

 

 

 

Building Gingerbread Houses – Demonstrating N-gauge Trains and Donating Matchbox Trucks

Alan Aagre, Irv Perlstein and Jerry Redington took the time today to visit the WIlliam Dick School where they paarticipated with the Kindergarten children in building gingerbread houses for Christmas and the holiday season.

Alan Agree

Jerry Redington

Irv Perlstein

Alan bought 60 matchbox type trucks and cars.  Each of the 48 excited kindergarten kids received a car or truck as aa gift from the Rotary Club of Shady Brook.

Alan also made a small poster board layout of N-gauge Trains. 

The students from from both kindergarten classes had an opportunity to see the trains running as well as use the transformer to run them. 

The greatest screaming excitement was when one train engine trailed the other and eventually caught up. The kids simply loved it!

Actually, if the truth was known, it is appaarent that Jerry, Irv and perhaps most of all Alan had as much fun as the students!

 

 

 

“Thanks” from Students at the William Dick School

Our ongoing commitment to the WIlliam Dick School and, more importanly, its students remains one of our Rotary Club's most significat initiatives. 

Therefore it is especially rewarding when we perioodically receive hand-made cards from some of the students.  One of any expressions of "thanks" we have reccently received can be seen below.

  Front Cover

Notice what they list first among the many things we've done for the school

Here we are even given credit for some activities we were not really responsible for putting on … in this case the Franklin Institute's sicence show, complete with rockets.  But, it is telling that these students are apprecaitive of what outside groups do for them!

Back Cover

Colonial Farms Gourmet Market Helping Us Collect for Veterans’ Holiday Meals

Under the leadership of Irv Perlstein, Club members raised another $1,025 to purcahse gift certificates for veterans who are facing challenging economic times and their families at Colonial Farms Gourmet Market in Washington Crossing.

Helping over the two -day, weelkend fundraising effort were Mark Nath, Syd Baron, Alan Agree and Irv's grandson, Bobby.

Syd Baron

The Club extends to so many of Colonial Farm's customers who contributed to the effort to help those who have given so much to defend our nation's freedom.

Aa veryspecial vote of thanks is extended to Nick Angelakis, Colonial Farms owner, who not only allowed us to again solicit funds to help veterans but provided coffee and pasteries to our participating members … which were especially welcome on Saturday when cool and rainy weather made the conditions less than ideal.

 

Recognizing Veterans Organizations Who Partner with the Club in Providing Holiday Meals to Needy Veterans and Their Families

The Club welcomed VFW Post 6393 (Yardley), Aamerican LEgion Post 317 (Yardley), the Guardians of the National Cemetery and the Jess Soby American Legion Post 148 (Langhorne) for their part in distribution the gift certificates to provide holiday meals for needy veterans and their families. 

As in past years, those gift certificates were purcahsed with monies the Club raised from generous shoppers outside Shop-Rite and McCaffrey's supermarkets prior to Thanksgiving.  This year alone, more than $2,100 was collected.

Irv Perlstein presented a Certificate of Apprecaition to Russ Davidon, Post Commander VFW Post 6393

Dick Newbert preesnted a Certificate of Apprecaition to Bob Craven, President of teh Guardians of the National Cemetery in Washington Crossing and Member of Americal Legion Post 317

Irv will be presenting a Certificate of Apprecation to Bob Osterhout, Post Commander of the Jesse Soby Americal Legion Post 148, who could not attend this morning's breakfast meeting.

Each Certificate of Appreciation read as follows (with repsective Veteraans Organization noted)

Bob relayed one story of a currently deployed veteran whose family was just scraping by.  One of our Gift Certificates was given to them … where it made a huge impact on their Thanksgiving.  Helping people in need … it's what we pride ourselves on doing!