Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friend, leaders, and problem-solvers that see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change-across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves. The Brunswick Coastal Rotary club (BCR) is pursuing a number of projects to address local problems and welcomes additional help.  Several projects are outlined below; if you are interested in participating in any of these solutions, please join a club meeting to learn more.

A focus group has been formed by BCR members Steve Black, Jim Pierce, Mac Lloyd, Chris Toothaker, Tom Cole, Josh Bouchard, and Charlie Goldstein in an effort to address housing for the homeless here and around the country. The group is in the process of developing a mission statement and networking with other community groups focused on realizing the goal of adequate housing for all people. Interested in assisting with this project? Please send an email to [email protected]. The recent death of a homeless Brunswick resident who was sleeping outside was the catalyst for a related project, a night time warming center in the Brunswick area.  BRC has begun conversations with other concerned groups/citizens to address this need as well.

BCR continues to work with Habitat for Humanity 7 Rivers on a home building project in Boothbay. In December, we helped the homeowner complete a shed on the house site. The foundation has been poured and construction starts in January.  Once the house has been framed, there will be plenty yet to do and it is expected that Rotarians from the mid coast communities will pitch in to see the project through.

BCR is currently completing a shed-building project with Brunswick High School students from the school’s garden program. Rotarians, Mac and Lucy Lloyd, have led ten students in designing and building a much-needed 10’ by 12’ garden shed, complete with window, sliding door and dragon mascot.  After an initial request to BCR for help by teacher Jon Riggleman, and student Chris McCrum, BCR members and local businesses, Hancock Lumber and Creative Cottages LLC, have worked together to buy the shed materials. Rotarians Charlie Goldstein and Mac Lloyd worked with the students on designing the shed, and Mac and Lucy Lloyd have led the students in the construction of the new building.  Thanks to their help, at least ten students have been able to learn carpentry skills, and the garden program, now in its sixth year, will finally have its own shed.

Brunswick Coastal Rotary continues ongoing work on many other local initiatives as well. For example, we pack backpacks for the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program to address hunger in our community. Mary Tennent, BCR member, takes books to the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program food pantry to provide families with an opportunity to nourish the children’s minds along with their bodies. We are offering boxes of oranges and grapefruit for $29 a box at Indranis, located at the Tontine Mall, and the proceeds of this sale funds our international and local projects. There are also “Hannaford Helps Boxes” that will benefit Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program located at Tontine Mall, courtesy of John Dennen, long-standing BCR member, and other Tontine Mall merchants.

In addition to local initiatives, the BCR is starting a new international project at this time: Dr. Susan Black, who has extensive experience in working with families in countries in Africa, is in the process of developing a project to raise funds for a much-needed ultrasound machine for a hospital in Burundi.  This project will follow up on the clean water project already completed in that area by the club.

The Brunswick Coastal Rotary Club meets on most Wednesdays at 6 p.m. at the Union Street Bakery located at 40 Union St., Brunswick. Please come join the conversation and help us take action to create lasting change in our communities and around the world.

We wish for peace and good health for all in 2020!

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