January 4, 2023 Breakfast Meeting Notes

January 4, 2023 Breakfast Meeting Notes


Tony opened with NH Trivia! (“I’m going to warm up in the lodge” edition)


Braden just received a check for $150 from PRHC for the Penny Sale.


Program: Steve, Susan, Lisa and Alex talked about their Christmas Convoy to Ukraine last month. 

They started in Zamosc, Poland, working with Polish Rotarians to deliver 18 tons of food, several generators and a lot of sleeping bags to 21 orphanages with 1300 children. They also had Christmas bags full of candy canes and other special treats. It took 7 hours to load all 30 of the trucks, which were loaned by local Rotarians. The local Rotary clubs also supplied members to help load.


Peter, the DG from Poland, Zoomed in to our meeting at this point. Poland is one district, with 1680 members in 80 clubs. Almost every club in Poland is doing something for Ukraine and he expressed gratitude to Rotary clubs in the US and the UK for their help. They anticipate a long war and plan to be there to help with the reconstruction once the war is over. Alex asked what is most needed in Ukraine right now. Peter replied that they are focused on orphanages, women and children’s aid and trying to get deeper into Ukraine. Meetings are ongoing to decide what to purchase next (for example, dishes are needed to feed the children.)


Once they crossed the border, they had a police escort to accompany them into Lviv. An Eastern Orthodox priest blessed all of the vans, and local TV filmed the event. At the time of delivery the area had 10% of the normal electrical supply and they plan for a future with no power at all, and the drive was dark. The orphanages are on unmarked roads to protect the children, because in the eastern part of the country, Russians are kidnapping children, trafficking them and harvesting organs. As a result, many of the eastern orphanages have shipped their children to the western part of the country, exacerbating the problem of supplies in that area. The truck got stuck in the snow at the entrance to one orphanage and a group of good Samaritans appeared to tow them out.


Our Plymouth Rotarians delivered supplies to a monastery housing 150 children. Temperature indoors was 40 degrees; their dinner was 1 slice of bread, 1 potato and 1/2 of a banana. Each child got a book, a toy, and a solar lantern, as well as a food delivery. After the gift distribution the children sang Ukrainian Christmas carols.


Next our group visited a wood stove manufacturer to see if it would be feasible to buy and deliver them. Our food deliveries (on Dec 18) will only last 40 days, so we need to keep working to keep them supplied with food. The campaign will be going national, advertising with national media (thanks Marybeth!) and we hope to raise $10 million in total. 


Ken Williamson won the 50/50 and donated it to Ukraine.

Lora won the chance to draw at the card game but pulled the 7 of diamonds instead of the ace of spades.


Respectfully submitted, 

Lora Miller, secretary