Saturday, April 28, 2007


Show us the money? That is what Ralph Hammond did for the Merrimack Valley Rotary on March 7. Ralph told the Merrimack Valley Rotary that they could get $90,000 without raising any money. How is that possible? “Through the Rotary Foundation,” Ralph said. He came to the Club to alert them to the opportunities available through the many grants programs offered by the Rotary Foundation.

These grants programs included the Ambassadorial Scholar program, which awards $23,000 to a Club for sponsoring a student who will go to college overseas. Other programs mentioned are the World Peace Scholar, which will earn the Club $52,000; Groups Study Exchange Member ($3,000); Volunteer Grant ($3,000), Matching Grant ($8,400); and District Simplified Grant ($1,000).

Ralph used his own Club, Bedford, as an example. The Bedford Club, in over 15 years, has raised $286,000 in contributions and yet, out of that total, the Club itself only raised $33,000. $253, 000 of the funds were raised through Foundation grants. He said the process is simple, and that not enough Clubs take advantage of it.

Ralph told the group that the Foundation headquarters is in Illinois but that is not where decisions are made as to how to spend the money. The decisions are made, he said, by each of the Clubs that takes advantage of the grants available. He urged the Merrimack Valley Members to keep the program going by not only using the grants but also, by making ongoing contributions to the Foundation.

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