Having just completed 47 club visits in the District, I can’t believe we are already 3 months into the Rotary year.  Mahalo for your hospitality, accommodations and for chauffeuring me around the state.  Three (3) more club visits to go and we are done.  I have learned so much from you.  I hope you found our visits profitable, meaningful and of value. 
October is Economic and Community Development Month
October is designated as Economic and Community Development Month featuring one of Rotary International’s 6 Areas of Focus, The Rotary Foundation (TRF). I’ve asked Rotarians from our District to contribute to this topic. The first is submitted by Geoff Horvath, Past President of the Rotary Club of Wahiawa-Waialua that spotlights one of Rotary’s vital causes -- growing local economies.  According to the United Nations, 836 million people still live in extreme poverty. Unemployment and underemployment, along with a lack of economic services, lie at the core of poverty.  In addition, nearly 1.4 billion employed people live on less than $1.25 a day. Rotarians promote economic and community development and reduce poverty in underserved communities through training, well-paying jobs, and access to financial management institutions. Projects range from providing people with equipment to vocational training. Our members work to strengthen local entrepreneurs and community leaders, particularly women, in impoverished communities.
What are we doing in D5000?
I hope you have enjoyed the first issue of Mauka to Makai, our District 5000 Community Service Newsletter that highlights community service projects our clubs are engaged in across our islands. Mahalo to Wally Wong, Community Service Director of the Rotary Club of Hilo and D5000 Community Service Chair, for putting together this culturally based community service program.  
One of the projects featured this month is from the Rotary Club of Hilo in which Rotarians helped plant 28 ulu trees to provide an economic development start for an education and applied research based farm that will provide cultural programs and a sustainable crop.  It’s an ongoing project in collaboration with UH Hilo and a grant thru Kamehameha Schools that supports the lease of 15 acres of land with the purpose of propagating Ulu. Kaivao Farm, an agro-forest farm, specializes in the cultivation and production of two food crops: breadfruit (ulu) and cassava, and two art crops: wauke (paper mulberry) and hala (pandanus). Breadfruit and cassava produce high yields of organic starch to supply local markets, restaurants, and a feed mill in Panaewa, while wauke bark and hala leaves support the art-forms of kapa making and weaving.  Kaivao Farm presents an opportune venue for education and research surrounding the practices and resources of the farm.
From the Rotary Club of Pearl Harbor, President Bruce Fink reminds us that October 24th is World Polio Day and brings our attention to the article, Our Goal: A World Without Polio,  recently featured in The Rotarian.  To reach this goal, the Rotary Club of Pearlridge, led by President Lasar McCabe, sponsored a BBQ fundraiser dinner with all proceeds going to Polio Plus.   A second initiative is the “Ride So They Can Walk – Polio Plus fundraiser” in which members who donate a minimum of $100 to Polio Plus before October 24 will receive a calendar. 
Let us continue to Navigate Together to Change Lives by supporting economic and community development through our service projects and by contributing to The Rotary Foundation…