Posted by Carrie Fenn on Oct 16, 2019
Busy meeting this morning! 
Guest Dan Parot from Jericho, VT, spoke about Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP), a national non-profit organization that provides beds and bedding to children without.
Club committees gave updates on the car raffle, the Charlotte tractor parade, club finances, and the upcoming Halloween Parade.

Charlotte Shelburne Hinesburg Rotary Meeting

Trinity Episcopal Church

Last week’s guests included Don Horenstein, Dan York, MaryAnn Horton, Kohl Davis and our speaker Don Chatfield.

This week we are joined by Dan York and our speaker, Dan Parot.


Ric Flood reported out on the Car Raffle, which raised $10,000 profit! Next year, we’ll save some money because we won’t have to pay Vermont Tent as much (Shelburne Farms will have the tables and chairs). Thanks to all who helped out, especially the set up and clean up crew. Wow, Yay for Roz Graham who landed a $5,000 payout!! Congratulations! Now it’s time for club members to get ready for the direct mail campaign!

Dan Parot, co-president of the Jericho branch of Sleep in Heavenly Peace, is our speaker today. SHP is a nationwide non-profit that supplies free beds and bedding to kids who are sleeping on the floor. In January, he and Robert Brosseau started the branch here in Vermont. The two went to the national headquarters in Idaho for training on how to build the beds. The bunkbeds are stained with white vinegar and steel wool, which creates a nice pigmented finish and kills bed bugs! SHP has developed a relationship with the big box stores and Rice Lumber for materials and tools. The organization provides bed frames, pillows, mattresses, sheets and blankets to kids who don’t have beds, which is a much more widespread problem than most people realize. Lowe’s provided tools to the group for 50% off and Hannafords gave them 100 gallons of white vinegar. This month they plan to provide 20 beds. Families in need of beds can apply on Facebook, which has an application form that goes to the main organization in Idaho and they contact the local chapter from the zip code provided. The group accepts donations of new bedding only. 

SHP  builds the beds in a garage in Jericho, using templates bolted to the jigs, so anyone can come in and help build. Kids are welcome to join in and it’s very safe. The builds are great but deliveries are where the real magic happens, and volunteers are welcome to join those efforts. It’s very heartwarming to bring these beds to families. Builds happen twice a month and volunteers are welcome. Next build is October 26, 9 am to noon and the more the merrier! The builds take place in a garage behind Joe’s Snack Bar in Jericho. 

Margo (Yay!! And thanks!!) has put together a budget from a calendar year perspective, which makes everything easier. There are a couple of large expenses yet to be realized including Thanksgiving turkeys and Hands to Honduras, leaving the club with a $13,000 shortfall, which should be made up with the letter writing campaign. The finance committee is considering looking at expenses as a percentage of income instead of straight dollar amounts. At next Thursday’s board meeting, the board will establish a protocol for approving expenses which will be brought to the club on October 30 for a vote. Richard requested the board look at growing the organization as opposed to focus on contracting the expenses. More active individuals leads to more fundraising and more dollars in the coffers, which helps us do to more good work. “No money no mission!” Expanding the club leads to new energy and new ideas. Only 15% of our members participate in the letter writing campaign, so perhaps members aren’t interested in doing this. Instead of members writing the checks, we should consider new ways to fundraise that involve the broader community. While the majority of members aren’t engaged in the letter writing fundraiser, it brings in between $8000 and $15000, so in this go round we could see if broader participation elicits greater results. We can use this opportunity to reach out to the greater community and ask businesses and the professional community to join our club. A special event to engage non-members in service to show what we do could be a better way to attract new members. Our next letter could include images of service in action coupled with an event and an update on the work we’ve done to date. 


The next Race Vermont event  is November 3 with 500 runners. We’ll need lots of folks to help out.

Tractor parade parking went great- Carrie Spear was very grateful. Carol, John L., John H., Linda G. and Charlie parked more than 500 cars! Attendees asked if Rotary had a donation jar so that’s something to think about for next year. We had six volunteers but needed 10, and we have committed to providing parking volunteers next year. We can put up a free booth as well. 

Donation jar at the Halloween Parade is a good idea. 

Dan York noted that he started coming to meetings because of interesting speakers, but he doesn’t quite understand what the club does. We need to do a better job of broadcasting our service. Jessica noted that she attended a meeting where she saw a Lund video that did a great job of explaining the work of Lund. She suggested CSH Rotary do the same so that the greater community can get a deeper understanding of our work. Should we send written invitations asking interested folks to come to meetings? The parent demographic is better served by our 8:00 am start time, but we need to follow up with personal invites. Roz says for all the jokes about breakfast, it is an important selling point- it’s an efficient use of time to incorporate breakfast into the meeting. 

PR committee has designed reusable signs to advertise the Halloween Parade- 20 for $300 or 30 for $500. Expense approved for 20 signs. Be sharp with placement to make sure the DOT doesn’t remove them.

Veterans breakfast is November 13. 

Polio Day is October 24. We’ll have a collection opportunity for members at next week’s meeting. 

Sergeant of Arms

Jessica is happy for the discussion on increasing membership.

Roz- Today is Grahams’ 55th wedding anniversary and they are going to spend the prize!

Richard says we need judges for the parade!

Carrie is happy for John Hammer who called her every Wednesday for four months to remind her about Rotary.

Phil is happy for our speaker.

Charlie and his wife are celebrating their 55th wedding anniversary, and Light the Night raised $800 (doubling last year’s efforts!).

Erik is happy for Dan Parot coming to talk about SHP.

Sophie Conway is the new farmer’s market manager!

Cash rolls over-

Take a Halloween parade sign and post it at your office!

Meeting adjourned at 9:05. See you next week!