Welcome to the Sunrise Spirit –
the Weekly Newsletter of The Rotary Club of Arcata Sunrise
We hope that you will attend one of our lively Friday meetings,
whether or not you are interested in joining Rotary.
Usually, we meet on most Fridays at 7 am in the Plaza View Room
at Arcata’s historic Jacoby Storehouse,
however, during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are meeting online.
Please visit the RCAS Website for the meeting links.
Together, we see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change
– across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.
The Calendar …
RISE: “Rotary Involvement Strengthens Everyone“
- March 10 – Sunrise Swednesday – Compassionate Mindfulness with Charli Murphy
- March 14 – Hands-on Garden Renovation at Jacoby Creek School from 10 am to 2 pm
- April 16-17 – District 5130 Training Assembly
- June 12-16 – The 2021 Rotary International Convention – Online!
- November 11-14 – The Zone Institute, tentatively scheduled for Tuscon, Arizona
- June 4-8, 2022 – The 2022 Rotary International Convention in Houston, Texas.
For Openers …
Two of last week’s guests were from McKinleyville High School, and they told us about the upcoming Success in Both Worlds Conference. MHS student Isabella Sundberg and MHS Indian Education Coordinator Karen Skoglund told us that the event is “put on by students for students”. RCAS is donating $1,000 to help fund the conference, with funds from our “Masks With a Message” fundraiser, and President Maggie’s Birthday Fundraiser to support BIPOC youth.
We also learned about a new hands-on project at Jacoby Creek School. On Sunday, March 14th, Sunrisers armed with shovels, weedwackers, and other tools will meed at JCS to help renovate its garden areas, prior to the school’s reopening.
Big thanks to John Gullam, Charli Murphy, and Stephanie Lane for packing and distributing Backpacks for Kids last week!
Gratitude and Health
President Maggie reminded us that our Sunrise Swednesday for this month is coming up on March 10th, and it will feature Charli Murphy guiding us in some Compassionate Mindfulness, and one lucky attendee will receive a special gift basket, courtesy of Tami Camper!
Rachel Sarvinski shared the things she is most grateful for, including her “new little nugget” – her son Isaac, the fact that she is gainfully employed during the pandemic, and that Isaac has love and support from three sets of grandparents!
Lori Breyer provided an update on the Club Health Challenge, which is drawing to a close. In the 300-mile category, Vanessa Griffin and Romi Hitchcock Tinseth are very close, while Stephanie Lane, Ray Noggle/Noogle, and Lori Breyer will soon reach the 200 mile plateau. JOYC, Scott Hunt (or maybe Scott Heller), Chris Hemphill, Lisa Hemphill, and President Maggie are all just about to the 100 mile mark. Due to popular demand, we will be resetting our odometers on April 1st to begin a new round, so be ready!
Fighting Inequities in Criminal Justice
The Featured Speakers at the March 5, 2021 RCAS Meeting were Vanessa Vrtiak and Tony Wallin-Sato. They discussed the issue of racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and how it affects all of us.
They explained what racial disparities are and why they exist in the justice system. They also worked to reduce the stigmas often attached to formerly incarcerated people, and they provided suggestions to allow us to help this population. This is important because one of every three Americans has a criminal record, which means that we have as many people with records as college degrees.
Racial disparities in the justice system lead to unequal access to resources needed by those currently incarcerated as well as though who have been released.
Vanessa and Tony are working to engage the community to promote alternatives to incarceration, and they encouraged us to look at the cumulative nature of racial disparities, become aware of our own biases and stigmas, work for systemic change, and welcome home those returning from incarceration.