In a first-time-ever collaborative project, five Santa Cruz County Rotary clubs (California, US – D 5170) joined forces.
Nearly 50 volunteers sanded and painted support pillars, benches, and picnic tables.
They also installed a new dining room floor and baseboards in the HSC dining hall of the Homeless Services Centre (HSC) on Coral Street on Saturday, April 7.
The project was the brainchild of Mike Holton, San Lorenzo Valley Rotary, who presented his idea at the monthly meeting of the Santa Cruz County Rotary presidents.
Each club quickly signed on, pledging funds, supplies and labour.
“This was a perfect way to collaborate on a project that none of the clubs could have completed on their own,” said Holton.
“No matter what skills the Rotarians had, there was some way to use them. It was obvious that the HSC clients were pleased to see the transformation.”
One vision-impaired HSC client said she was happy that the support pillars were being painted a bright coloor so she could see them much more easily.
The number of people who had come to help impressed another client.
“All of us at HSC, from our employees to our residents, were so moved by this incredible effort from our Rotarian neighbours,” said Phil Kramer, Executive Director of HSC.
“Seeing the crew at work and now enjoying these much-needed improvements every day makes all of our lives better and brighter. A huge thank you to everyone at the Santa Cruz Rotary Clubs.”
Santa Cruz County is home to seven Rotary clubs. Those participating included San Lorenzo Valley, Scotts Valley, Santa Cruz, Capitola-Aptos, and Santa Cruz Sunrise.
UCSC’s Rotaract Club, a division of Rotary for young people, also joined in.
Rotary International is a worldwide service organisation whose purpose is to bring together business and professional leaders to provide humanitarian services, encourage high ethical standards in all vocations, and to advance goodwill and peace around the world.
It is a non-political and non-sectarian organisation open to all people regardless of race, colour, creed, religion, gender, or political preference.
There are 34,282 Rotary clubs worldwide with 1.2 million members.
One of Rotary’s crowning achievements is the near-complete eradication of polio around the world, as members administered vaccines to millions of people.
That effort has been helped significantly with matching funds from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.