Rotary eClub One, District 5450
World's 1st eClub (Jan 2002)

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Community Service Grants – putting your donations to work in local communities

As a club with members across the world, Rotary eClub One is positioned to provide service wherever there is need. Thanks to your donations, we are able to help when called upon. Below are some recent projects that the club has supported.

BrainWise, eBooks and Homeless Men ~ Liz Lewis Knoelker (Project Champion)

This project was a collaboration between Rotarians from the Denver Mile High Rotary and Rotary eClub One. The project was designed to help improve decision-making skills in homeless men. As part of the project, participants were selected from The Crossing, a Denver residential facility run by the Denver Rescue Mission. Each participant was provided a Nook ereader so they can read approved books. Participants were also taught BrainWise critical thinking skills.

After completing a book, they were asked to fill out worksheets applying BrainWise critical thinking skills to the characters and problems in the book. Rotarians were available to assist participants with poor reading skills complete their books. About 70 homeless men participated in the project.

Dr. Marilyn Welsh, a psychology professor at the University of Northern Colorado, conducted the evaluations (pretest and posttests) to measure the degree of improvement the program had on the problem solving and executive functions skills of the men who participated in the intervention. Reporting the results of the evaluation, Dr. Pat Gorman Barry stated, “Homeless men who completed the short version of BrainWise – two four-hour sessions called BrainWise CPR, showed significant improvement in problem solving skills as measured by a series of standardized psychology measures, compared with a control group who did not have BrainWise"

The participants did not have reinforcement outside the classroom, which is why the introduction of the ereader to analyze books using the 10 Wise Ways will further reinforce their use of their thinking skills. Additionally, the use of the one-page problem solving worksheets will boost their retention and use of BrainWise thinking concepts – all very exciting. Practice is key to retention, and for individuals who have never learned skills to stop and think, it is important that they receive opportunities to use their new skills.

Project champion, Liz Lewis Knoelker, used a Rotary eClub One community service grant to support purchase of the Nook ereaders.

CCFA's Camp Oasis ~ Tressa Breindel (Project Champion)

The Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to find a cure for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis) and improve the quality of life of children and adults affected by these diseases.

The CCFA established Camp Oasis over a decade ago to enrich the lives of children with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis by providing them with a safe and supportive camp community. This co-ed residential camp program brings children together with supportive counselors and volunteer medical staff during the summer.

Project champion, Tressa Breinde, used a Rotary eClub One community service grant to support tuition expenses for kids to attend the 2014 Camp Oasis (August 3-8) in Red Feathers Lake, Colorado at the Girl Scouts of Colorado Magic Sky Ranch.

High School Music Program ~ Robert W Steen (Project Champion)

Working with a local arts foundation, Wallace-Rose Hill Friends of the Arts, project champion, Robert W Steen, has secured a Rotary eClub One community service grant to purchase and rent instruments for a high school music program in North Carolina. 

The Wallace - Rose Hill Friends of the Arts was created in 2004 to promote local cultural growth and awareness of the Arts.  Their objective is to bring Fine Arts programs to the schools and the entire community, donating any surplus proceeds to the school system's Art and Music programs. They have matched Rotary eClub One’s funds which will assist the enthusiastic students in this rural high school who require some assistance in acquiring musical instruments which helps in the continuation of their music program.  

Friends of the Arts schedule outstanding performances for all students in the local attendance area, kindergarten through high school. In addition, some of the performing artists visit the classrooms and work with the students on such things as song writing, storytelling, and playing various musical instruments. The group’s community-wide events include an annual Christmas Show, Summer Outdoor Concerts and the annual production of the Messiah with members of the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra.  

In addition, some of the performing artists visit the classrooms and work with the students on such things as song writing, story-telling and playing various musical instruments.


  • The make-up article was developed using reports submitted by the project champions.
  • The project champions are members of Rotary eClub One.
  • The opinions expressed by the authors of each Make-up Article do not necessarily represent the opinions of Rotary eClub One and its editorial staff.

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