May, 2020


Don Meyer, District 5970 Foundation Chair

Foundation First newsletter
May, 2020
Dear Rotarians,
You can be very proud of District 5970 Rotarians.  The response of our clubs to fighting the Covid-19 pandemic has been remarkable.  Thank you!  Our District was very fortunate to receive a $25,000 Disaster Response Grant made available by The Rotary Foundation for Covid-19 projects in the District.  The District Board decided to grant $1,000 to each club who applied.  To date, 33 clubs submitted a request for a grant to fund food banks, diaper banks, meals and PPE for healthcare workers, and learning supplies for school children.  When action is needed, you can count on Rotarians to be out front. 
Globally, the polio infrastructure Rotary helped build—including its tools, workforce, and extensive surveillance networks—are being used to also help prevent the spread of Covid-19 by supporting preparedness and response activities in countries around the world. 
In times like this, you can be proud to be a Rotarian.  Thanks for doing your part to stop the spread of Covid-19.  
The Duck Race Was a Virtual Success!
Thanks to the clever ingenuity of DG Michelle Bell, the annual Duck Race went off famously in her hot tub last Saturday with a facebook live event.   
                                                                              Congratulations to the three winners—Patti Kunz of the Cedar Rapids Metro North Club, Dan Melton from the Bellevue Club, and Jon Ahrendsen of the Clarion Club!  Each will receive 1,000 Paul Harris Fellow recognition points.  Thanks to all who purchased a total of 992 ducks!  
Our Global Scholar Connor Roth is Doing Well in England
   Global Scholar Connor Roth
Here is the latest from Connor:
All is well here. This past week we resumed classes online after a three week Spring Break. I had initially planned to roam around Eastern Europe and hopefully get in touch with some Rotary Clubs there. I've always been quite fascinated with the history of that region and it would have been wonderful to make contact with some Rotarians there and create some connections. Of course, that plan went bust a month before break even started, so instead I took a free course on Eastern European history. A good precursor for a trip someday!
My university has been quite helpful in moving things online since the break. I have two term papers to write and then my thesis proposal all due in June, so the lockdown has given me extra time to work on those. The only hurdle is that the university library is closed, so I've been making good use of interlibrary loans online. There are only a few things they don't have digital access to that I have had to do without. Additionally, the university announced a No Detriment Policy to ensure students were not negatively impacted by the virus. Our deadlines for term papers this semester and for our dissertation due at the end of the summer have been pushed back by two weeks. Furthermore, as long as students receive a passing grade on 2nd-semester and dissertation submissions, we cannot fall lower than our 1st-semester average. I am far above passing - my average is in a class called merit - so it basically means I am situated well!
I live on a small street that is quite residential and have been active in group chats and Facebook mutual support groups with my neighbors, offering any help I can to those who may need it. I also started volunteering online for an NGO I formerly worked for when I was in Palestine and am teaching two English classes for some of the volunteers who are missing classes in lockdown. Keeping busy and helping out in any way that I can!
I hope everyone is safe and doing okay.   All the best, Connor
District Grant Applications Due June 15
Thanks to all attending the online Grant Management Seminars held in March and April.  Attendance by someone in your club is a requirement for qualifying a club for applying for a district grant. We’re thankful for the interest in this grant program that returns to your club a portion of your giving to the Annual Fund of The Rotary Foundation.  This is why it’s so important to continue supporting the great work of the Foundation.  This year we will have around $69,000 to award for district grants. 
Final Reports Due May 31 for 2019-20 District Grant Projects
A reminder that final reports are due May 31 for this year’s district grant projects.  Please email them to and you can find the form here entitled “Grant Project Report.” 
Congratulations to the Bellevue Rotary Club for completing their renovation project to provide a new pickleball court for their community.  
Did You Know? 
Did you know your club set two goals for your giving to the Foundation last July?  Many of you know that, but it’s easy to forget and we all need to be reminded.  The two Foundation goals are the Annual Fund Goal, and the PolioPlus Goal.  Nine clubs have met both goals, but the other 42 clubs have a ways to go.  This past week, the Club Foundation Chair in your club received a progress report on your club’s giving to date.  When they reach out to you, please help by doing your part in reaching the goals. 
Remember, the funding for the grant projects your club does to improve the quality of life in your communities, and for others around the world, is a partial return of your gifts to the Foundation each year.  Right now, it’s critical we that we each do our part to keep our club’s commitment to the Foundation strong.  And to continue our quest to end polio now. 
How do you make your gift? 
  • The easiest way is to give online at sure to designate your gift for the Annual Fund or PolioPlus.  Then let your Club Foundation Chair know you did it.
  • You may also pay by check, payable to The Rotary Foundation, and get it to your Club Foundation Chair and they will send it in.  
Finally, remember that the Rotary Rush program is still on until June 10!  If you give enough to the Annual Fund that will get you halfway to your first or multiple Paul Harris Fellow level, you will receive matching points for the other half, to allow you to reach the PHF level.  Please email John Wasta, District Fundraising Chair, at for details.  
As always, please reach out to me at or at 641-251-4655 with any questions you may have. 
Thank you for your consideration! 
Yours in Rotary,
Don Meyer
District Foundation Chair                                                                                                                              

Donald Meyer

District 5970 Foundation Chair