Metropolitan Savannah Rotary intends to support, both financially and through volunteer support, organizations that make Savannah a better, stronger, more livable community. Preference is given to organizations whose missions  incorporate programs with a tangible impact, providing lasting results for years to come. Funds should be directed toward a specific program, and applicants should outline volunteer opportunities for our members.
 
Metropolitan Savannah Rotary will partner with one organization for a year (beginning July 1, 2022), providing volunteer support once a quarter and financial support through this grant. The grant recipient will be awarded a minimum of $10,000 with an opportunity for additional funds based on the success of Metropolitan Savannah Rotary events throughout the year. Throughout the service year, there must be opportunities for hands-on service projects at least quarterly for Metro members. Recipients must also be a 501(c)(3) organization. 
 
Applications must be submitted in the Google Survey no later than April 1, 2022.
 
Selected finalists will be notified by Friday, April 22, 2022. Finalists must be able to attend an in-person interview on May 2, 2022 at a scheduled time between 2:30 and 5 p.m. Finalists must also be able to attend an in-person club meeting to present their program to the entire membership on May 17, 2022 at 12 p.m.
 
The applicant selected as Metropolitan Savannah Rotary's Annual Service Partner will be notified in late May 2022, Should you have any questions during the application process, please contact Chelsea Sawyer at clsawyer@chathamcounty.org or Cari Clark Phelps at cari@clarkcreativedesign.com
 
Please find the application HERE.

 

Metro's Past Service Partners

 

2021-22 Girls on the Run Coastal Georgia and Low Country

 

Metro hosted a "Blood, Sweat and Beers" fundraiser for Girls on the Run at Coastal Empire Beer Company in November 2021. Club members also volunteered at the GOTR Fall 5K Celebration Run and other events. Metro President Cecilia Arango said, “The 2021 international Rotary theme is empowering girls. We are proud to support the Girls on the Run program at their area schools and community centers. This program inspires girls to become future leaders and provides them the skills and voice to build confidence and enact action.”

 

2020-21 Urban Hope and Bike Walk Savannah

Metro Rotary made a $5,000 donation to Urban Hope to support the nonprofit’s summer camps, which offer programs, “change the lives of children and youth, bringing them a sense of hope and a sense of future through spiritual and educational development and life management skills.” The club also donated $5,250 to Bike Walk Savannah to support neighborhood street safety audits and other programs that make streets safer for people using all modes of travel.

“Urban Hope will utilize the generous contribution from Metro Rotary to help run our free summer camp program for Savannah area children,” said Jennifer Oetgen, president of the Urban Hope board of directors. “The summer camp program provides a safe environment for underserved youth ages 6-18 for eight weeks. Metro Rotary’s funds will play a vital role to facilitate this impactful program for Savannah’s youth this summer.”

The program involves children in the fine arts, gardening, field trips, and fun activities. It also features a leadership development track for students as they progress through the program. Lunch is provided daily.
 
 
“Bike Walk Savannah is grateful to Metro Savannah Rotary,” said Executive Director Caila Brown. “We thank them not only for the monetary contributions, but also for coming out to support our community cleanups and our street safety audits with the Edgemere-Sackville neighborhood. In 2015 Metro helped us launch our New Standard Cycles program and we were thrilled to be selected as a service partner again this year.”
 
The audits are a collaborative effort with the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health grant administered by Healthy Savannah and the YMCA of Coastal Georgia, and are designed to create activity friendly routes to everyday destinations. The goal of the audits is to identify opportunities to improve transportation infrastructure that will make it more convenient and less hazardous for people to walk, bike, and take transit to school, jobs, and other important destinations.

 

2019-20 Coastal Empire Habitat for Humanity

Metro worked with the Coastal Empire Habitat for Humanity organization to help move their administrative offices from a former residence to a newly-created office space in the Habitat Restore. The move gave the organization a more efficient workspace so that it can more effectively work towards its vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.

Tasks included work parties to fix up the former residence inside and out in anticipation of its future sale. Metrotarians also assisted by physically moving the entire contents of the administrative office from the former residence to the new Restore location.

 

2018-19 Ogeechee Riverkeeper

The Ogeechee Riverkeeper (ORK) mission is to protect, preserve, and improve the water quality of the Ogeechee River Basin. Metro worked with ORK to support the Stormwater Wise Windsor Forest project to connect and educate local residents in positive ways on land, water, and their neighbors while providing tangible ways for homeowners and renters to build awareness about drainage systems.

Members supported the project by:
  • Cleaning tires and debris from marshes in the Coffee Bluff area
  • Placing tiles at drain locations throughout Windsor Forest to serve as reminders that the drains lead directly to receiving waters and to discourage dumping of toxic substances there
  • Constructing rain gardens in Windsor Forest to increase rain infiltration and reduce surface runoff
 
 
 

2018-17 Loop It Up Savannah

Loop It Up's mission is to provide creative art experiences and connect resources to children and families throughout Savannah. Using the arts, they foster stronger relationships, allowing them to work together to build a sustainable and interconnected community where everyday needs are met with creativity and confidence.

Metro members painted Loop It Up's new community center, constructed book boxes, and volunteered at Soup It Up (Loop It Up's major fundraiser). 

 

2016-17 Fresh Air Home

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The Fresh Air Home, located on Tybee off Butler Avenue, has been in existence since 1939. The nonprofit offers a beach camp, overnight experience to at-risk children ages 4-11 from Chatham and surrounding counties.
 
The camp provides each child with all that they need. They must only bring a bathing suit and tennis shoes. While the children are with Fresh Air, they experience the beach twice daily, field trips, picnics, arts/crafts, music, outdoor sports, talent shows, square dances and movies.
 
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Metro money was primarily used to replace the wooden floors in the main building (pictured above). Metro Rotarians completed hands-on projects throughout the campus, including building shelving units, painting nursery furniture and dining room tables, enhancing playground equipment and the ball field, and lots of painting.
 

2015-16 Forsyth Farmers' Market: Farm Truck 912

 
Metro Rotary's 2015-16 Annual Service Partner was the Forsyth Farmers' Market's Farm Truck 912 program. Farm Truck 912 delivers fresh locally grown fruits and vegetables via weekly stops in low-income neighborhoods.  Farm Truck 912 utilizes SNAP/EBT and financial incentives for doubling purchases, helping low-income Savannahians afford healthy produce.
 
Farm Truck 912 also provides nutrition education and health screenings with emphasis on the importance of healthy eating. Through these efforts Savannah’s community members with the least access to good food and healthy choices will be able to “bring home” knowledge of healthy eating and lifestyles, simple cooking and choosing more fresh fruit and vegetables for a well-balanced diet.  All Bring it Home project activities are designed to invite our neighbors to learn, move and grow in a healthy way both with us at the Forsyth Farmers’ Market or in their own neighborhoods via Farm Truck 912.  
 
 

2014-15 Savannah Bicycle Campaign

 
 
Metro's partnership with Savannah Bicycle Campaign (SBC) helped fund and refurbish the New Standard Cycles bicycle lab.  The bike lab enables SBC to refurbish bikes and donate to those in need of reliable transportation to work and school. 
 
Savannah Bicycle Campaign works through advocacy with local government, education of drivers and cyclists, and encouragement of bicycling as a healthy means of transportation or recreation.  Their goal is to provide bikes to people who need safe and affordable transportation.  “We want to make it safer and more convenient for people who are not elective cyclists but who use bikes as their primary transportation,” John Bennett, executive director, said.
 
 

2013-14 Greenbriar Children's Center

 
The Metropolitan Savannah Rotary Club chose Greenbriar as its 2013-14 annual service partner. Club members held two major fund-raisers for Greenbriar, built 20 irrigated and raised beds on the Center's Hoskins Street property, and taught Greenbriar students the ins and outs of gardening.  Funds raised will also be used the maintain the garden.
 
The mission of Greenbriar Children's Center is to promote the healthy development of children and the strengthening of families. The nonprofit provides services that include an emergency shelter, runaway/homeless, residential car, independent living, family preservation, early childhood education and car, and Project Safe Place.
 
 

Metro's First Unofficial Service Partner: West Broad YMCA

Before we started officially launched the Annual Service Partner program Metropolitan Savannah Rotary Club's first service partner was the West Broad Street YMCA. Members of the Metropolitan Savannah Rotary Club presented the West Broad Street YMCA with a check for more than $4,000 which was used to purchase new soccer equipment and gear for the children.
 
The soccer program benefits children by teaching teamwork, commitment, healthy lifestyle and self-confidence. The director of the West Broad Street YMCA says the children will benefit tremendously.  "You know one of the mottos of rotary is service above self and this club really exemplifies that.They are coming in tonight, putting the goals together and bringing in the equipment. They are going to spend time with the kids. I mean, who could ask for more? It is absolutely perfect," said Peter Doliber, West Broad Street YMCA executive director.
 
 
 
 
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