Posted by Roberta "Betty" Ramirez-Lara on Sep 06, 2017
Dear Fellow District 5930 Rotarians,
I was not prepared for what happened on Friday August 25, 2017 - Hurricane Harvey.
We decided to travel on to Laredo on Thursday the 24th as I was scheduled to arrive for Club Visits on Sunday to meet with the 5 Laredo Rotary Clubs on Monday and Tuesday.  Every hotel room in Laredo was booked!  It was a good thing we arrived on Thursday. 
I made every effort to reach Club Presidents in the Coastal Bend to make contact.  I wasn't successful in reaching them all.  I was constantly on the phone and staying on top of the weather.   Our Communities of Rockport, Port Aransas, Aransas Pass, Port Lavaca were hit the hardest.  Goliad and Victoria also received damage.  I had to make some quick and tough decisions.  I developed a Monetary Fund where I knew that our Rotary Communities could access funds immediately.   The Relief Request Form has been sent to our Rotary Clubs that were directly impacted where they can receive funds as soon as this week.  The outpouring of help has been tremendous and it is very heart warming to witness Humanity in Motion.  Since Rotary District 5930 was quick in developing our Relief Fund, Rotary International Ian Riseley promoted our website District 5930 on Facebook and on the Rotary International website .
Rotary International and our Rotary Foundation have also developed a Gulf Coast DAF (Donor Advised Fund) #608.  I will be meeting with Rotary International Pres-Elect Barry Rassin and Greg Podd in Dallas next Friday September 15th and Saturday September 16th along with other District Governors in the affected areas of Hurricane Harvey.  We will also have access to these funds for our Rotary District 5930.  
I have visited 28 out of the 52 Rotary Clubs in our District.  As I mentioned, my schedule is aggressive but I am glad I had visited the Clubs that were impacted by Hurricane Harvey.  I could only see the faces of our Rotarians that I had met there.  I had made the connections and created relationships with them.  
Our work has only started to help our Rotary Communities for recovery and rebuilding.
I have made my donation to our Rotary District 5930 Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. Please keep in mind that 100% of the monetary donations will be used for relief efforts.
For those of you that have made a donation - THANK YOU!  
Please visit our Rotary District 5930 FaceBook Page for Updates.  
Betty Ramirez-Lara
2017-2018 District Governor
Rotary District 5930