Category Archives: Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River
News from Bob Jehn of Burney-Fall River Rotary Club:
During President’s Day Weekend, five Interact students from Burney and Fall River High Schools traveled with five adult advisors to Agua Prieta, Mexico to perform community service alongside members of the Rotary Club and Rotaract Club of Agua Preita.
Students cooked hamburgers for 200 children in an underserved neighborhood, painted an amphitheater that had previously been a site for drug sales, handed out soccer balls to children at an after-school foster child facility, painted a mural they designed on the wall of the dining room at a nursing home, visited a local high school where they interested students in forming an Interact Club, and painted classrooms at a school for disabled children.
Intermountain Interactors were overwhelmed by some of the living conditions they saw and want to help more. The mother of one of the students who went on the trip said her daughter’s life is “forever changed”.
Rotarian Bob Jehn, who has organized the trip for the last two years said, “Providing these kind of experiences for the youth of our community gives me great satisfaction. It is a great pleasure for me to head up our Rotary Club’s youth programs, and seeing the Interact student’s happy, bright, smiling faces is what gives me hope for the future.”
News release from Bob Jehn, Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River:
Rotarian Patricia Bergman headed to Delhi on January 28 to join Anil Garg of the Rotary Club of Simi Valley, California, along with a group of Rotarians from around the world to administer polio vaccine to children in India. The group will be vaccinating children during the country’s National Immunization Days.
“When this program was started back in 1985, there were 1,000 cases per day worldwide, and it was endemic in 125 countries,” said Bergman. “Last year we had only 30 cases worldwide; the year before that we only had 22 cases worldwide, and that was in two countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan. So, we are very, very, very close in eradicating the disease.”
Bergman and the group attended three orientation programs with representatives from the World Health Organization, UNICEF and India’s national polio committee office.
India hasn’t had a polio case in five years, but because the virus is still present in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and it would take only one flight to bring the virus back into the country where, so far, Rotary has spent over $8 billion in this program since 1985.
On Feb. 1, the team flew to Nagpur, located in central India, where they were taken around the local areas to meet with different Rotary clubs. High school, middle school, and elementary school students went around town with banners promoting a polio-free country, a polio-free city, rallying to motivate people.
On February 2, the group began to administer the liquid drops to children 5 and younger.
“It is very satisfying to be able to participate in this Rotary-sponsored program,” said Bergman. “To be on the ground with a program that Rotary has been working on since I joined the organization 25 years ago is a truly humbling experience.”
NEWS RELEASE from Bob Jehn, November 10, 2018:
Imagine yourself in a foreign country trying to communicate in a new language when suddenly a massive wildfire sweeps through the town where you are living, destroying your house and everything you brought with you except your passport, your cell phone, and the clothes you are wearing. That’s exactly what happened to Valeria Romo Mejia, a fifteen-year-old Rotary Youth Exchange Student from Columbia, as she was preparing to leave for classes at Paradise High School on November 8th.
Victims of the most destructive fire in California history, Valeria and her host family endured the four-hour drive to Chico with more than 20,000 others who were trying to escape the flames, not knowing what would be next.
Thanks to the Rotary support network and a quick decision by Rotary Club President-Elect and Burney Fire Chief Monte Keady, Valeria is safely in Burney in her own room at Monte and Robin Keady’s home. The Keadys were already hosting Austrian Exchange Student Katharina Schatz, who had made friends with Valeria at the Interact Kickoff Event in Winters, California last month.
Rotary Youth Exchange Officer Bob Jehn along with Rotary District personnel is coordinating the effort to provide immediate financial assistance to Valeria, so she can purchase new clothes, school supplies, and other personal items lost in the fire.
Jehn says, “We hope Valeria decides to stay in Burney for the rest of her exchange year, but we’re taking it one day at a time. I’m just so proud to be part of an organization with members like Monte and Robin, who are always thinking of how they can help others.”
From Bob Jehn:
Underscoring their penchant for community service, members of the Interact Clubs of Burney and Fall River High Schools spent Sunday, October 28 performing chores at the only animal rescue center in Shasta County.
Sixteen students descended upon Bella Vista Farms in Cottonwood to muck out animal stalls and clear brush for fire protection supervised by Interact Advisors Bob Jehn, Willie Rodriquez, and Brenda Rodriguez. Burney High School Science teacher Mark Harner wielded a chain saw while students dragged branches and weeds into burn piles to be burned later this fall.
Owners and operators of the facility, Chic Miller and her husband Bob, ages 71 and 80, respectively, were very grateful for the help as they depend on only grant funding and private donations to support the operation. The facility houses over 100 animals that have been abandoned, abused, or injured, and as Chic says, “We don’t adopt out – the animals live out their lives at Bella Vista Farms.”
Chic does much of the veterinary work at the facility, and has written a book about caring for animals.
The Interact Club of Fall River High School has also made monetary contributions to the facility to help support the work that Chic and Bob do. After the latest contribution from the Interactors Chic said, “Oh my gosh, I can’t thank you all enough…I can’t tell you how much I love you kids.”
Once again it was wonderful to attend the annual Hertage Day at McArthur-Burney Falls Park to get a taste of life in the 1870’s. The event took place on Sunday October 7 from 12-4 p.m.
There were lots of hands on events like black-smithing, hatchet throwing, candle-making, pine-doll crafting, branding, tug-0-war, two-man sawing, and weaving.
Fine music was played by various North-State groups from the Old Time Fiddlers Association. Once again I got to listen to one of my favorite groups of performers, The Shooting Stars and friends.
Sons of the Pioneers were there showing guns and implements from the old days and explaining about life on the frontier.
There was delicious apple crisp prepared fresh in the Dutch Oven and fresh pressed cider from Rotary. The Lions and Lions Auxiliary were there with hamburgers, hot dogs, and other treats.
The Burney Lions Club came early to help direct parking. Leos and Scouts helped to man the events and displays. Lots of volunteers lent a hand to bring the past to life. Parking on Heritage Day was free. The weather was beautiful. In addition to enjoying the fun, the food and the music, many took time to hike the trail and observe the falls. It was awesome!
Heritage Day is sponsored each year by the McArthur-Burney Falls Interpretive Association in partnership with CAL PARKS.
Press release from Bob Jehn at Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River Oct 4:
Since the fall of 2014, the Rotary Club of Burney-Fall River has been quietly
engaged in a program at both Burney and Fall River Elementary Schools
that provides mentoring to first through third grade students.
The idea for the venture was originally conceived by Rotarian Sally Armstrong as a way to teach table manners to the elementary level students, but quickly morphed into an avenue to provide a sounding board for the children in the form of a non-judgmental adult. School counsellors have lauded the positive changes in some children because of the program.
Students who were quiet and didn’t interact with others have become more
outgoing and interactive, and students who were loud and boisterous have
learned that they are able to garner attention in other more acceptable
Students who participate in the program are chosen by the school behavior
paraprofessionals, Jeanine Ferguson in Burney and Sheri Crane in Fall
River. Rotarians visit each school once a week at lunchtime, Tuesdays in Burney and Wednesdays in Fall River. It seems that being chosen to sit at
the “Rotary Table” at lunchtime is considered an honor by the students, and many lobby their teachers and counselor for the opportunity. Typically, three Rotarians sit with 8-10 students each week and ask them how their day is going while engaging the students in conversation about a variety of topics.
The Rotary Club plans to continue the program indefinitely, as long as it
provides a benefit to the students and the community. The Rotary Club of
Burney-Fall River was chartered in 1974 and currently has 43 members of
the community who are active in the Club. The Club also sponsors two
Interact Clubs, one at each High School. Interact is an organization for
students ages 12-18 who perform community service and promote