In March of 2020, the COVID19 virus began to spread just like the wildfires! Our lives were suddenly put on hold as the entire population of our planet struggled to gain control over the immense loss of life! Our Rotary club is a small entity by comparison, and certainly this pandemic shut down has taken its toll on our members. That being said, I am SO proud of how this club has stuck together, adapted to  meetings on Zoom, and continued to fund projects and serve the world and our community's needs! We have had great presentations every week thanks to the combined efforts of Marlowe McAnear, Elly Dotseth and Manuela Bump-Murillo. We gained a frequent Zoom guest from the UK too! Only just recently we were able to gather at Lake Murry to sit in the sunshine and listen to  music played by member Mike McAnear and his fellow musician Grant (husband of fellow member Laurel Nishida.) 
  In July 2020 our club Foundation and Rotary's District Designated Funds bought approximately $10,000 worth of Medical Supplies for COVID-19  for a public hospital in  Atlantida, La Ceiba, Honduras thanks to Manuela Bump-Murillo's quick action to a request for assistance. 
Our Projects Committee kept busy reviewing many other smaller projects to which we were able to donate through our club Foundation as well. These included:
$2,000 to the Alliance for African Assistance to help dig water boreholes in Uganda
$2,000 to Duwara Consciousness for a Shower Trailer to assist our population living without shelter
$ annonymous donation to fund stocking the Diego Hills School pantry for one year
$450 to Stove Team International to provide 5 stoves for families and help them protect themselves from smoke inhalation while cooking
$1,000 to DigDeep for their Navajo Water Project
$1,000 for the Mesa De Justicia Garden Project to help teach neighbors how to create  gardens and grow their own fresh produce
And last but not least, we were able to contribute $ 5,000    from a generous gift from the estate of our former member Alice Patterson to help fund the La Mesa Community Garden
In June we gave scholarships to students at Helix Charter School and the Diego Hills Cluster.
In the summer of 2020, member Peggy Davis offered all of the fruit from her very productive citrus trees if our club members could come to pick and bag it.  Fern Hall ran with the idea of making this a service project we could continue to do even wearing masks and keeping 6 feet apart. She and her husband Jeff spoke with Union Tribune reporter Karen Beth Pearlman and the UT ran a great story about Fern and Jeff  (and their sweet dog Chico!) Fern began getting phone calls from people wanting us to harvest their extra fruit as well. That began a year-long service project of asking other kind neighbors if they had excess citrus or other fruits that we could harvest and deliver to local food banks to help food insecure families during the pandemic. Thousands of pounds of oranges, grapefruits, tangerines apples, and lemons were picked by a team of our club members and driven to multiple foodbanks throughout El Cajon, Santee, La Mesa and San Diego! Christine Evans was able to get a very generous donation of groceries from the Grocery Outlet so that we could fill about a hundred bags with food for the students served by the Diego Hills Charter Schools. At Christmas time we shopped for gifts for little kids so we could help those same students get items for their children they couldn't have afforded on their own. 
Now it is  April an entire year later and at long last we were able to gather together in person (masked and vaccinated against COVID19) at Lake Murray where were treated to live music performed by Mike  and Grant  We celebrated Jeff's birthday too! It is not exactly what we knew as "normal," but it was such a delight to see each other's smiling eyes and listen as we sang along! 
Please take a look at the Photo Album below to see images of the fun we have had while doing good in the world!