A Special Gift from Rotary

Members of the Rotary Club of SaddleBrooke had fun preparing Rotary dictionaries to be delivered to students in Sand Manual and Catalina. Just a few of the Rotarians participating include Dr. Debbie Rue, Monica Oszust, and Tom Fraoli.

Rotary International and Barbara Barr Bengen

A group of third graders are going to be receiving a special gift—the gift of words. The Rotary dictionary project is a nationwide effort to provide young students with their own personal dictionaries. Members of the SaddleBrooke Rotary Club distribute the dictionaries to students in third grade at Mountain Vista School, San Manuel Elementary School, and Coronado Elementary School. The students treasure receiving and writing their names in their own copy of the dictionary, and the whole family gains an added literacy benefit as the dictionaries are taken home.

This dictionary is filled with more than just words and definitions. It also includes a mini encyclopedia filled with math facts about U.S. presidents and math conversion tables.

Many of the children who receive the dictionaries come from homes where English is a second language and they may not have access to a lot of resources. Rotary members say seeing the joy on the children’s faces when they learn the book is theirs to keep makes the project worthwhile.

Throughout the months of November and December, the Rotary Club of SaddleBrooke is delivering the Rotary dictionaries to elementary students in San Manuel and Catalina. Working in teams, the Rotarians visit one classroom at a time to distribute the books.

For the Rotarians, there is so much joy that comes from delivering the dictionaries and spending time with the students. One excited third grader asked one of our Rotarians if he could take the book out to recess so he could read it. A parent of one of the students works on the golf course in SaddleBrooke and told one of the players that his daughter was so excited about the book that she slept with it every night.

What is Rotary? Rotary is made up of your friends and neighbors who have fun working together to make the world a better place. Rotary is the world’s largest volunteer organization and is found in more countries than the Red Cross, Starbucks, or McDonald’s. Together with our friends, we are working to make a difference and change lives.

The Rotary Club of SaddleBrooke is an award-winning club. We meet on Thursdays at 11 a.m. for lunch at the Ranch House at SaddleBrooke Ranch, then we meet in the ballroom for an educational program or presentation by a speaker. Rotary is open to those who live and work in SaddleBrooke, SaddleBrooke Ranch, and the surrounding communities. All are welcome! For more information, check out saddlebrookerotary.com or contact the club’s Membership Chair, Diane Demeroutis, at [email protected].