ISSUES: Homelessness, climate change, need for disaster preparedness...

posted Jul 5, 2017, 8:57 AM by Wayne Wieseler   [ updated Jul 5, 2017, 10:11 AM ]

There are many issues that we are facing: homelessness, climate change, need for disaster preparedness, pollution, water, food shortage, etc. As an individual, it appears hopeless, overwhelming, daunting at best but as a member of a church congregation or a service club such as Rotary, Lions, or Odd Fellows, maybe not.

The Rotary Club of Sebastopol Sunrise prepares bag lunches for approximately forty homeless individuals every Wednesday morning. We have handed out laundry vouchers. We created the West County Homeless Advocates to address the needs of the underserved by partnering with church members and other concerned West County residents. Sebastopol City Council members, Sebastopol Police, a Sonoma County Supervisor have attended our meetings. We meet at the Sebastopol Area Senior Center, at 167 North High Street, Sebastopol from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. one Monday of the month. Why not join us?

Our motto is to encourage and inspire each other to be informed and courageous. We inspire each other to be more open-hearted, generous, serving and responsible for ourselves and others. We want to build lasting friendships and enduring partnerships. We share governmental budgetary news, work to supply immediate needs to homeless (food, tarps, tents, sleeping bags, etc.), support social services to homeless, including medical services and counseling, work to obtain shelters/alternative housing for the homeless and support existing and emerging governmental and related nonprofit initiatives. To learn more about West County Homeless Advocates, email richard@richardruge.comand ask to be included in the group’s email distribution list.

The point is together we can do a lot. There are so many worthwhile activities to join. LikeDailyActs (, the Sebastopol Area Time Bank (, the Sebastopol Area Senior Center (, Rotary, Lions, etc.

Do something. Form new friendships and partnerships. Serve somebody. Be inspired by others and be inspirational. Amaze yourself! It feels great. There is nothing that focused self and communal effort cannot achieve. What better way to spend the rest of our lives.

My wife and I were in Bodega Bay recently watching a large bird soar high without once flapping its wings. If we commit to service, we too can rise so high that we can contribute without once flapping our wings.

~ By Richard Ruge and Jim Glomb