Glacier Valley Rotary club reveals humble beginnings

Posted: Thursday, March 19, 2009

In 1979, the Glacier Valley Rotary needed a way to fund various community service programs. The group decided a garage sale with a boat theme would be a successful endeavor.

"It was really a hodgepodge of some old boats and some used items. It really didn't have the right attitude yet," Dahl said.

Thirty years later and 55 members strong, the show funds the group's philanthropic efforts that stretch across the globe.

The volunteer organization provides aid to small communities just outside the city of Colima, Mexico, Williams said. They sponsor shelter boxes to areas of the world that have experienced catastrophic events and contribute funds to help restore sight to people in India whose diet causes blindness. Additionally, the group provides dental, health and medical care to areas in need, as well as safe drinking water, food and supplies.

Glacier Valley Rotary does "anything that needs to be done, wherever it needs to be done," Williams said.

But the group's reach is not only overseas. Locally, the Rotary club does a variety of things to help both businesses and individuals succeed.

"We just finished a food drive the for the Food Bank, where we collected 4,300 pounds of food," Williams said.

They also support Interact, a high school program to support individuals interested in public service, as well as Rotaract, a version of Rotary aimed at young professionals.

The group also hosts the "Pillars of America" speaker series, cleans up Duck Creek, raises money for the Juneau Pioneers Home, builds dugouts for sports fields and maintains Rotary Park, just to name a few.

It's all in the spirit of service, Williams said.

"There is nothing greater in the world than to give something to someone," he said.

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