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Scannelli column: Clemmons Rotary Club leading gifts

Sandi Scannelli is president and CEO of the Clemmons Community Foundation

Another week, another chapter in living through a pandemic. It should come as no surprise that Rotarians with an international motto of “service above self” are front and center to serve. The Clemmons Rotary Club boosted the COVID-19 Response Fund for Clemmons and Lewisville with their gift of $20,000 this week. This gift, the largest gift to date, originated with the generous leaders who formed what is now the Clemmons Community Foundation. Scott Spillman, club president, shares “this is what Rotarians do … we serve our communities year-round and especially in this time of uncertainty and need. We invite others to join us. We’re glad to serve on the Response Team, to support the local effort with dollars, and to provide on-the-ground support.” Yes, the Clemmons Rotary Club is working out details with Senior Services Inc. in Winston-Salem to provide local porters or runners for one of the most virus-vulnerable groups, individuals over the age of 65. When older adults call Senior Services for groceries or other items, Clemmons Rotary Club members will pick up and deliver to local residents and help seniors “stay-at-home.”

The total collected and pledged to the COVID-19 Response Fund for Clemmons and Lewisville is now $50,562 and our communities will need this as the impact of the local and state “stay-at-home” order unfolds. The Response Team met virtually last week and will meet weekly as its members continue to monitor the local impact to determine critical needs and the capacity of safety-net organizations. Among the areas the team is monitoring are vulnerable individuals, childcare for essential workers, and resource needs of out-of-work parents with children. Members of the Interfaith Alliance of Clemmons and Lewisville report that many area churches and faith-based centers are putting together strategies to provide support and connection for their members, especially seniors who live alone. The Interfaith Alliance and the Women Who Care for Community are working closely with local public-school social workers to help families and inform a financial response.

We’re blessed by the generous gifts. We’re also mindful that we are early in the journey. As the federal support package details become clearer, gaps will emerge that require supplemental solutions. The longer the journey, the greater the strain on residents and local safety net organizations. None of us knows what the future will look like, but with thanks to the Clemmons Rotary Club’s recent gift and the generosity of others, we’re better prepared than a week ago with a ready source of support to expand capacity and soften the impact of this crisis.

Visit clemmonsfoundation.org/covid-19 to list services your organization is providing, find local resources, or to make a donation. And thank a Rotarian for all they ways they live their mission of service above self in our communities.

Sandi Scannelli is president and CEO of the Clemmons Community Foundation.