While many folks are starting the second half of their calendar year on July 1, the Holmen Area Rotary Club is beginning their fiscal year.  Not only is July 1 the first day of Rotary’s fiscal year, this date marks the beginning of this relatively young club’s 10th Anniversary Year.


The Holmen Area Rotary club consists of approximately 35 members, including business owners, community leaders, retirees and spouses, school administration, insurance, financial advisors, real estate brokers and many more unique classifications.


Rotary represents greater than 1.2mm individuals around the world, making them the largest single service organization in the world.  Rotary’s motto is “Service Above Self” but can readily be described in six words:  Join Leaders, Share Ideas and Take Action.  Speaking of Taking Action, “Our club is very active both locally and internationally”, exclaimed Adam Fleis, the club’s president during the 10th Anniversary year.  


Community projects completed/ongoing include Holmen’s Hope Community Dinner, Spring Community clean up, Highway 35 road-side clean-up, a 4-sided clock located in Halfway Creek Park, purchase of a Holmen Police K-9 Dog, Camp Decorah Boy Scout Camp restoration, Summer lunches in the Park, Respect Retreat and STRIVE Program (Holmen High School mentorship programs), as well as Holmen High School Scholarships, just to mention a few of the local community projects this club has accomplished in its nine years.  And community projects are not all this club does annually.  “We host over a half dozen ‘social events’ throughout the year at various venues to promote comradery and to have good fellowship”, remarked Bryan Helgeson, club appointed social director.  “One project we are currently working on and are excited to say are very close to finalizing the fundraising portion of the project is our Deerwood Park shelter”, Helgeson went on to say.  This will be a $40,000 shelter project and will be donated to the Village of Holmen.


Internationally, this club has supported several clean water projects in multiple villages in Peru as well as a central water system and private family restrooms in another community.  These projects are accomplished through collaboration with Water Missions International in one instance and directly through a local Rotary Club in Lima Peru by providing education and funding for the construction of Bio Sand Filters.  “Clean water is something we all take for granted”, indicated Dean McHugh, Rotary District 6250 District Governor and club member, “and now, villages in Peru have experienced what it is to be able to drink a glass of water without concern for contamination”.   Outside of clean water in Peru, our club has assisted in providing financing to purchase a cow for a community school facility in Kenya.  And another international project is our ongoing support for both incoming and outgoing foreign exchange students at the high school level.


“So the projects just described do not just happen,” Fleis said, “the club accomplishes these projects primarily through three annual fundraising events – a Club Member Service Auction in the Spring, Rock ‘n Ribs Competition in the Summer and a Green Bay Packer Raffle in the Fall.”


Rotary has a Foundation that all clubs and individual members support financially.  The funds received by the Rotary Foundation are used for many goodwill projects around the world, the eradication of Polio being the primary project.  However, a portion of those funds are redirected back to area clubs in the form of Grants to support various club projects.  As a result of this club’s fundraising, collaboration with other clubs financial supporting our international projects in collaboration, coupled with grant funds received from the Rotary Foundation, the Holmen Area Rotary Club has raised and supported nearly $250,000 worth of projects in our community and internationally.


If you have a desire to “Join Leaders, Share Ideas and Take Action”, please join other like-minded individuals for a hot breakfast every Wednesday morning at 7:00 a.m. at the Holmen Village Community Room or visit our website at homenarearotary.org.


We look forward to seeing and/or hearing from you.