Community Service

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Rotary Club of Ojai
Community Service
The goal of community services is to further the ideals of Rotary fellowship and goodwill championed by our commitment to the Four Way Test throughout our local community.  Leadership by example gives us an opportunity to touch the lives and make a positive impact on anyone we meet and with whom we conduct business, communicate, or especially those who are directly impacted by our charitable acts.  As Rotarians we are keenly aware of the impact we can have daily in the lives of others in making our own local community a better place to live.  Goodwill starts at home.
Living Treasures
The club participates with other community organizations in selecting and recognizing six or more individuals who have provided significant efforts and made significant contributions to the well-being of the community. The event was established in 1995 by club member Sanford Drucker, a World War II veteran and community organizer, and taken over by a joint committee of Ojai Rotary-West and the Rotary Club of Ojai shortly thereafter. 
Allan J. West Arbor Day Celebration
The club participates in celebration of Arbor Day annually at one of the elementary schools on the last Friday of April with a planting of trees and often a performance by the students and teachers about the importance of trees. The event is named after the famed forester and club member.
Community Service Month (March)
 The committee is responsible for coordinating a Rotary Work Day whereby members participate in an activity that improves the community. Most recently, members have also participated with the Green Coalition to remove non-native plants in Libbey Park.
Sudden Urgent Needs
The committee and the President budget funds annually that can be used in the event of an unforeseen emergency strikes the community. The Community Service Director makes a recommendation to the President and Board should the need arise.
Community Grants
The Community Grants Committee reviews and screens all requests for charitable donations. The request for proposals (RFPs) goes out in January and the committee meets to screen applications, then in the spring makes their recommendations to the Board. Typically, the club grants about $25,000 total to about 15 to 20 local nonprofit organizations.
Dr. Bob Skankey Humanitarian of the Year Award
The club recognizes an outstanding member of the community for their selfless efforts to aid and assist members of the community who need help the most. The award includes $2,000 for the recipient to use at their discretion. In year’s past, the club has recognized Chaparral High School principal Javier Ramirez and Tobi Jo Greene of the Empowerment Workshops. It is named after noted ob-gyn doctor Robert Skankey who has delivered more than 3,000 babies in the Ojai Valley and achieved lasting success with his medical missions to Niger, reducing maternal deaths and saving hundreds of lives with his midwife training program. 

Other Projects
During the pandemic, the community service committee stayed busy with local events including:
  • Drive-In Movie Night at Nordhoff High School: Club members organized a drive-in movie for the entire community, screened "Peanut Butter Falcon,” and raised $1,500 for the Ojai Unified School District Family Fund, which contributes to families in need and hardship
  • Adopt-a-Senior gift card exchange at holidays: Club members donated gift cards which were distributed to residents of local residential care facilities
  • Auction fundraiser for Ojai Family Shelter:  The Club organized a zoom social/auction for members and donated $2,000 to the Ojai Family Shelter
  • Each month at the Ojai Unified School District zoom board meeting, we recognized 2 students who exemplify Peace in Action.  They are presented to the Board and attendees of the meeting, receive 2 checks: one to keep and one to donate to a non-profit of their choosing. The students say a few words about their chosen charity.