Club Leaders
President:        Dr. Robert Steinberg
President Elect:          Rebecca Tanaka
IPP & Secretary:          Ellen Young
Treasurer:     Ellen Young
Membership:      Dr. Robert Steinberg
International Service:   Dessie Panomitros
Rotary Foundation:     TBA
Vocational Service:   Dessie Panomitros
PR & Marketing:      Marianna Zeidler
Our Club is #2 in District 6440
for Per Capita Giving


Contact the Club President for an invitation to join, or speak our monthly
Second Thursdays only
Email Club Leaders directly (click on name on left)
or write
Club Board Meetings are via Zoom the 3rd Saturday of every month at 3:00PM.
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Furthering International Understanding

Check Marianna Zeidler's weekly bilingual posts in

Current International Project

Global Matching Grant ##2119211 budgeted at $41,419 for a Mobile Medical Van for Hemophilia Screening

Donate: [TRF]

Rotary Disaster Response Fund

Click below to join

District 6440 Polio Plus Society

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Register before December 31, 2023 and Save
District 6440 Conference
[Together with District 6450]
April 20, 2024 - 8AM - 6PM
at Rotary International Headquarters
 Evanston, Illinois  ∙
District 6440 -
Mental Health Task Force
Dessie Panomitros, Sharon Weingarten, and Marianna Zeidler are leading the activities.

Learn more through the Rotary Action Group
Connect during the Open Members zoom on the second Saturday of August, October, December, February and April at 9am New York time. The meeting ID is 834 0892 3476 (
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Club News
Our own Dr. Cristina Anez gave a very healthy presentation to plan a healthy new year.  Her approach is to maintain a balance between your mind, food and exercise; not necessarily thinking about what to think, eat or do; but rather about "HOW" your mind, your nutrition and your physical activity is.  Her full presentation can be downloaded here.  

World Mental Health Day October 10th is an opportunity for people and communities to unite behind the theme ‘Mental health is a universal human right” to improve knowledge, raise awareness and drive actions that promote and protect everyone’s mental health as a universal human right.  Read more here:

Our mental health influences how we think, feel, and behave in daily life. It also affects our ability to handle stress, face and overcome challenges, maintain and build relationships, and recover from difficulties and setbacks.

Click on the image to watch the entire World Mental Health Day Webinar October 10th
Here are a few everyday mental health tips to help you elevate your mood and become more resilient. 
  • Practice self-care and make yourself a priority.
    • The first step in practicing self-care is to take care of your body:  - Eat a healthy diet; - Exercise; - Get enough sleep.
  • Disconnect from electronics and social media.
  • Engage in activities that provide meaning.
  • Volunteer.
  • Engage in meditation and/or mindfulness.
  • Avoid heavy substance use.
  • Get help from a licensed mental health professional when and if you need it. Seeking help is a sign of strength — not a weakness.
Club President, Dr. Robert Steinberg and PR Chair, Marianna Zeidler joined Rotarians from the Arlington Heights, Buffalo Grove and River Cities, to help weed out around St. Anne, a facility acquired by Maryville Academy to serve as shelter for unaccompanied minors.  Another activity is planned for October 21st to do some fall planting and prep the gardens for the winter.
PDG Ellen Young and Incoming Club President Dr. Robert Steinberg attend the District 6440 Installation event at The Glen.  Club members Sharon Weingarten and Marianna Zeidler were also in attendance.  This event gave everyone an opportunity to meet and/or reconnect with Rotarians from other Rotary Clubs in the D6440.
Club members Dr. Robert Steinberg, Dr. Zenobia Tantra, Dessie Panomitros & Marianna Zeidler attend and connect with Rotarians from across District 6440 at a New Member Orientation event at Rotary International headquarters in Evanston, Illinois.  The day ended with a tour of the newly remodeled One Rotary Center.
(Click on the image to access Michael's complete presentation)
Past Rotary International Vice President and current Chair of the International End Polio Now Committee, Michael McGovern gave us an update on Rotary’s End Polio efforts and challenges. Rotary has been working to eradicate polio for more than 35 years. As a founding partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, we have reduced polio cases by 99.9 percent since our first project to vaccinate children in the Philippines in 1979.  The eradication of polio is Rotary’s longest standing and most significant effort. Along with our partners, we have helped immunize more than 2.5 billion ... Pakistan and Afghanistan had been the two countries where Polio immunizations were not quite possible.  Unfortunately, an increase number of cases have been recently detected; four cases in Mozambique … even when Africa was declared polio free in 2020.  Now, the first U.S. case of polio in nearly a decade has been confirmed in an unvaccinated individual in Rockland County, N.Y.  Polio is a very contagious, life-threatening viral disease that causes permanent paralysis in people who are not fully vaccinated in about 5 out of every 1,000 cases. Most of the U.S. population has protection against the disease because they were vaccinated during childhood. But in areas with low vaccination coverage, such as the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community in Rockland County, people who are not vaccinated are at high risk. There is no treatment for polio, but vaccination prevents the disease.  State health officials on Monday confirmed that Rockland County's polio case is genetically linked to samples found in wastewater around Jerusalem and in samples taken in London.  The person with polio in Rockland County had never been vaccinated against the virus.  Mike stated that the optimism that Rotarians show, brings hope.  The battle continues and funds should continue to be raised to match the challenge.  Help from the Gates Foundation, private organizations and individual advocates, make the promotion of vaccines and immunization campaigns possible.   Read more:   ∙

The war in Ukraine is having devastating consequences on civilians as families flee their homes. According to the United Nations, more than 5 million people, most of them women and children, have sought refuge in neighboring countries and across Europe, while about 7 million more people have been displaced within Ukraine.

Rotary and Rotaract clubs in Europe and around the world have taken swift action and are working with members nearby to provide food, water, medical equipment, and shelter for refugees.

Because of our generous donors, The Rotary Foundation has received more than $15 million in contributions that will be prioritized for disaster response grants.

Click here for the full R.I. Article

Learn How Rotary Responds to the War in Ukraine

Emily Parker, a second-year Masters student in the refugee and forced migration studies program, is a refugee resettlement caseworker with Catholic Charities of Chicago. Parker works to provide refugees housing and address other immediate needs within the first months of arriving in the U.S.  Catholic Charities agencies across the country have been helping resettle refugees from Afghanistan. Chicago’s influx of Afghan refugees has overwhelmed aspects of the city’s resettlement infrastructure, leaving gaps in support services.  “No one anticipated the Afghanistan situation, it all happened incredibly abruptly,” Parker said. “So, we have kind of just had to roll with the punches and completely transform our resettlement team.” 
Catholic Charities USA’s approach to migration is rooted in that all persons have the right to find in their own countries the opportunities to live in dignity and the right to seek work elsewhere in order to survive. Sovereign nations have the right to control their borders while affording protection to refugees and asylum seekers and respecting the human dignity and rights of undocumented migrants.
In addition to providing essential services to immigrants and refugees to the U.S., they advocate for policies that protect family unity and allow newcomers to contribute to and more fully participate in their new communities.  Click on the image to share in our club meeting, and view her whole presentation.
Working with an established very local NGO with a record of service is a big bonus for our GC 2119212 global grant, that made possible the Rotary Mobile Medical Van that will provide needed attention to local Hemophilia patients.
The project inauguration was honored by RI President Shekhar Mehta and First Lady Raashi Mehta on October 20th when visiting our international partner District 3160 (Hosapete) in India. See previous news below.  
Today, the recipient of the Rotary Medical Van, the Karnataka Haemophilia Society will be recognized with the Karnataka Rajyotsava State Service Award.  The ceremony takes place today in Bangalore, India.
Join us for World Polio Day as global health experts and partners share our progress on the road to polio eradication.  World Polio Day was initiated by Rotary International over a decade ago to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, who developed a vaccine against poliomyelitis.  The annual number of wild poliovirus cases has declined by more than 99.9% worldwide from an estimated 350,000 in 1988 when the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was launched. Of the three serotypes of wild poliovirus, type 2 was certified as eradicated in 2015 and type 3 was certified as eradicated in 2018.  Your contributions count by saving a life at only $3 per child.  Our Rotary District 6440 has just launched its PolioPlus Society.  Your annual pledge of $100 per year until the world is declared polio free earns our membership.  Learn more and click HERE To join District 6440's PolioPlus Society; "Charter Membership" opportunity until June 30, 2022.

A World Polio Day video created by Barbara Blane is on Vimeo at this link:

The Rotary Northeast Chicagoland Passport Club is excited to announce the recently approved District 6440 grant which supports a project which addresses the key area of child and maternal health as well as supporting local economies.   The project targets the ever growing issue of food insecurity and access to fresh produce within our local communities that exist within local food deserts.
The Northeast Chicagoland Passport Club extends throughout District 6440. Several key geographic areas of need in Lake County include North Chicago, Zion, and Waukegan. Ninety percent (90%) of the food provided are shelf stable products only.  There is a deep need for fresh fruits and vegetables to support the nutritional health of those individuals in the community who rely on food pantries for their basic nutritional needs. Poor nutrition is the root cause of many significant health needs such as diabetes and cardiac issues.  Obesity caused by dietary limitations is a key factor in many of these adult onset diseases which often have their roots in childhood. Adding the availability of more fresh fruits and vegetables can assist in making the dietary changes needed a reality.
The district grant provides multiple ways for our Rotary Club members to be involved at various levels. It can also offer those in the club who would like to have some hands on involvement to assist with shopping at the markets, communicating with farmers or making deliveries. The grant activities will take place through November as Farmer’s Markets continue through final harvest times. The $1000 grant ($500 from the district and $500 from donations from members) are being used to purchase fresh produce in large quantities for distribution to three organizations: North Chicago Community Partners Food Pantry, Midwest Veteran’s Closet and the Lake County Haven. 
In addition, the club has assisted with actual gardening and harvesting through a partnership with Rondout School District 72’s community garden.  Superintendent Jenny Wojcik, a Passport Club member, will coordinate the hands-on-gardening for those who are interested.  Several local businesses  Including Impact Networking have also volunteered to work in the school garden as well as some Rondout families to assist during the summer months while students are on break. Produce from the school garden is also donated to the three targeted organizations.
This project serves to support local economy and small farmers as well as those living with food insecurity who are dependent on the food pantries.  It also has health benefits from the standpoint of Maternal and Child Welfare while having fresh fruits and vegetables enhances wellness through enhanced nutritional opportunities.
We are thrilled with the impact of the District grant on the lives of those in need in our communities.  We are exploring how to keep the project going and “growing” in the days ahead. There are so many ways that this project can grow yet at the same time, the current simple plan has already made an enormous impact toward achieving our goal.   Food for Life is truly making a difference in the lives of many families. For more information, please feel free to contact the Club President Ellen Young, or Foundation Chair, Dr. Jenny Wojcik @ 

Binish Desai, former Rotary Youth Exchange Student hosted by the Waukegan Rotary Club in 2009, heads today his own EcoEclectic Technologies - EETech company designing and implementing processes for recycling solutions.  Now, Dr. Binish Desai having earned a degree in Environmental Engineering, has a spot on Forbes' 2018 list of Asia's top social entrepreneurs under the age 30 [Recorded Program].  His story is featured in the August 2020 issue of the Rotarian Magazine, "Full Circle" starting on page 34. He credits his success to the boost received from his Rotary experience.  

Every hero has an origin story. “I was 10 years old when the entire journey started,” explains Binish Desai. It began with a cartoon called Captain Planet, an animated TV series from the 1990s about an environmentalist with superpowers. Desai can still recite the show’s refrain: Captain Planet, he’s our hero / Gonna take pollution down to zero! “That tagline stuck in my mind,” he says. “I wanted to do something to help Captain Planet.”  Full Circle Video


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