Updates & Announcements
Visitors included: Lynn Womack and Neil Rose
  • Service Day. Ann suggested trying to create a Rotary plus community wildfire mitigation team, like the one in NoFloCo where the guy in charge has a list of about 80 people and once a month sets a day and gets 20 people to come out and volunteer. We should do a very visible project like on Hwy 73.
  • Bill is planning a Sunday in front of King Soopers to promote Mindfest.
  • Neil has a couple of projects he is interested in getting started. Please talk to him if you are interested: Eldercare and community service.
  • Stan mentioned that we might do a Carnival or a Mardi Gras of our own.
  • Yvonne has MindFest flyers to hang up. Be sure to like and share our Facebook page to promote the event.
  • Jonathan updated everyone that the refugee family arrived at the airport. They seemed very delighted to be welcomed. Flew Kuala Lumpur to Turkey to Denver. Stan has been translating. Good to ask every time if you want to use a photograph of refugees.
  • Ruth provided an update on the Visioning results. Some members said they would circulate the top-level ideas. Do we represent the views of the whole club?
  • Ed gets the tree award for all his work on our literacy program. We gave dictionaries and thesauruses in schools, then moved to Nook readers, we’ve done math programs and robotics. We ask the schools: What are you doing that we can assist with? Deer Creek Elementary School has requirements for reading improvement. They noticed that kids get a lot of fiction reading early, and not enough informational reading.  So we will provide books for that. For example, a book for their grade level about George Washington. It costs $750 to buy books, and we label the books with, “This book is donated by Rotary” and it includes the four-way test.
  • Another school is doing One Book, One School. In the lower grades, the parents read to the kids. Older kids read the book to their parents. Everyone discusses the book in school.
  • We might work on adult literacy with MRC. Or the library literacy programs. We have an extra $500.
Upcoming Events
  • Denim and Diamonds at Evergreen Rotary, next week Friday.
  • MindFest: Live Your Best Life ~ Saturday, February 17th 9am-2pm @ Our Lady of the Pines Church
  • April 13 - 14 Foothills Home and Garden Show
  • El Rancho dinner in April: Members will pay half price $30 instead of $60. April 24, 5:30 p.m.
Meeting program
Braver Angels, Ann Johnson & Teresa McPhail
Johnson is a long-time Rotary member. Retired teacher of the deaf, ordained Episcopal priest.
Teresa explained that Braver Angels is concerned about ugliness in individual conversations. We tried to put 10 red and 10 blue voters in the same room, brought in a family therapist and set rules.  
Ann said the organization and website www.Braverangels.org were created to bridge the political divide. There’s a lot of tension, and we need to get past that. And to strengthen our democracy. If you sign up, you get a list of workshops that are happening, such as a fireside chat about civic renewal. There are podcasts. There’s a Zoom national debate: Should Trump be on the ballot? A person who thinks the Covid response was deeply flawed, and a discussion of the politics of contempt. There are groups at the local level and national, including one in the Denver area.
Teresa: It broke my heart when I realized my own daughter didn’t feel welcome at the dinner table because she was on the other side of the political divide. I think social media is at the crux of the division.
Ann: This fits Rotary’s mission of bringing people together. You can look up activities by Rotary and Braver Angels.
Teresa: Nobody is a deplorable. We are all friends. We are more than who we vote for.
Teresa: I need to respect her truth, not believe it. When data comes into the conversation, we ask, “What brought you to that belief?” The back story of how a person came to that is way more interesting. You can ask a question of the moderator. You cannot address the red or blue person directly.
We have workshops on how to have a family conversation when you are on different sides of the political equation.