Russell Hampton
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Support Lurana at our Golf Tournament!   

Lurana Shelter is a first-stage, emergency shelter providing safe, secure refuge and emergency services such as meals, clothing, personal care items, transportation, and child support, as well as services related to advocacy, and staffing 24/7 for support and security.  One-on-one counselling is provided in partnership with a community agency. 

Child-specific programming is available to assist vulnerable children and youth as they deal with the abuse they have been exposed to. Highly trained staff provides support, guidance, and system navigation, as well as specialized learning and recreational activities.

Recognizing that domestic violence is a complex issue, the Intensive Case Management (ICM) Team provides comprehensive wrap-around services that support women and their children in shelter or transitioning from the shelter to the community.

All services at Lurana Shelter are provided free of charge. 

Note from the President
President’s column – May 23rd, Edmontarian
The spring of 2021 is in full swing, with flowers bursting into bloom and birds returning to our yards and parkland spaces. Vaccines are widely available, and students are back to in-person schooling. Hope has never been brighter.
The Capital Region Rotary Clubs’ Integrity Awards was this past Monday May 17th. Organized this year by our club, it was a huge success. We honoured the recently retired Executive Director of Boyle McCauley Health Centre, Cecilia Blassetti as our recipient. As matters occur, Dr, Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Public Health Officer and Integrity Award recipient from Edmonton West Rotary Club interned at Boyle McCauley with Cecilia. What a village in which we live!

From our club, and the entire District 5370 thanks to club Past-President Neil Lang and President-Elect Jim Saunderson for the leadership they provided, and club member Lesley MacDonald as the ever sterling emcee.
Our club continues as leaders in our community with “Service Above Self”. 
Rotary’s Vision Statement is:
TOGETHER we see a world 
Where PEOPLE unite to take action
To CREATE lasting
CHANGE across the globe in our communities and in ourselves.
We recently completed a member survey and focus group sessions to do some strategic thinking and longer-term planning for the club. So, what was concluded?
Key Themes:
1) Community – Local, Downtown, Meaningful, Engaged, Legacy
2) Service – Volunteering, Hands-on, Group effort, Impactful, Local, Global
3) Membership – Fellowship, Networking, Speaker Program, Have fun
These themes are being further developed into objectives and actions by the incoming club executive and boards of directors.
We are vibrant; We are growing:
We are well funded.
Rotary is needed ever the more in our communities.
As the incoming RI President Shekhar Mehta outlines his year slogan:
“Serve to Change Lives”
One month left for our new 50/50 raffle!
Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h
A number of our club members virtually attended District 5360's conference on May 1st. It was almost like attending a Rotary International convention.  Keynote speaker topics included;
1. Inclusion and Diversification
2. The future is YOUth, Youth panel
3. Inclusion Boot Camp
4. Resetting the World with Wellness
5. The Power of Rotary, amazing feats by Rotarians

What was interesting is after each speaker we were directed into breakout rooms for group discussions.  Nice to converse with Rotarians in Southern Alberta and hearing their challenges are similar to ours.

While there were many lessons learned I did hear in the Wellness session that instead of saying "How are you?" state "How are you today?"  Especially relevant in the current pandemic.

If you ever get a chance feel free to attend these conferences in other districts.... or even the RI Convention in mid June.  Not too late to register for this big virtual event.  You will be overwhelmed by the number of speakers and discussions.
Rear view shot of Integrity Awards at Infinite Events studio.  130 participants on the Zoom meeting!
Indigenous Speaker Series
Join us at the May 31st club meeting with special guest 
Rennie Houle, from Whitefish First Nation #128 on Treaty #6 land. He is a devoted advocate for his community and his determination and commitment go beyond his day-to-day duties as an Employment & Training Program Manager over the past 15 years.
Rennie's resume includes:
Graduate Recreational Programmer – Lethbridge College Child Care Diploma – Blue Quills College
1st Nations Recreation Manager
Youth Development Programmer
Employment and Training Manager
Director of Emergency Management
Dog walker
New Member Article:
New Member: Nik Sihapanyaxay              
Hi, my name is Nikone (Nee-con), but I often go by Nik. While I'm commonly mistaken as Filipino or Chinese, my actual ethnic background is Laotian. My parents were born and raised in Laos. Somewhere in the 80s, they moved to Thailand where my sister was later born. In the late 80s to early 90s they moved to Canada and later in 1992 I was born in flatland Winnipeg, MB. I grew up in WPG and graduated from the Asper School of Business at the University of Manitoba, class of 2015. I took advantage of several exchange programs that were offered, which allowed me to travel to places like the UK, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. I've been to countless cities and still have an itch to get back out there.
Throughout university, I spent my time working as a casual employee of TD Bank in their retail team. I spent 4 years as a teller and upon graduating moved into the Financial Advisor role with TD for 1 year before moving on. I was eager to grow my career in banking, so I started looking for jobs across Canada and was presented the opportunity to move to Edmonton. I accepted the offer to move into TD Bank's Commercial Banking team in September 2016. Here, I spent 1 year learning the ropes, managing business clients, their financing needs, and overall banking needs.
In 2017, the opportunity to move up the ladder presented itself and I volunteered to move to Grande Prairie. My work was virtually the same, though at a higher level with greater responsibility. I spent 2 years in Grande Prairie and I don't regret any of it at all, except maybe the condo I bought and still own. I learned so much from the GP team and met a lot of great people. In the 2nd year, I began to get more involved in the community and found myself engaged with Community Foundation, Rotaract and attended a few Rotary meetings with my colleague.
After the 1st year in GP, my girlfriend moved up to be with me, but her work contract was only for 12 months as she was covering a mat leave. Near the end of her contract, she decided she wanted to try something new and she missed her family, so we chose to relocate back to Edmonton. TD did not have any available positions for me, but that's OK, because I was privileged to find a great position with Servus Credit Union. I work in the commercial banking team as a Relationship Manager. I manage a book of business of over 80 businesses, provide new financing, and identify opportunities to add greater value to my members.
My girlfriend and I just purchased a home, so come June 1, 2021 we are calling the neighborhood of King Edward Park our home. I think it's safe to say we likely won't be moving from Edmonton anytime soon. I'm grateful to be part of Rotary Edmonton and look forward to meeting more of its members over the years. I plan on being as active as I can be, so will likely be seeking to join a committee and of course, volunteering my time where I can.
Future Monday noon Meeting Speakers:
June 7 -
Jimmy Morrison - Community Relations
Operation Friendship Seniors Society 
June 14 -
June 21 -
Brian Edwards
My year as Club President, or "Getting your dream role in the midst of a pandemic"
Save this link for all these meetings:
Editor's message:
You may have seen an article in the District CONNECTIONS newsletter about different graphics of our Rotary Wheel. 
Although we see lots of examples of this version, it actually is the OLD brand:
So the proper Rotary wheel is the all yellow one, which I shall attempt to use in all our graphics but forgive me when once in a while the old one pops up!  Oddly most of the logos on the Rotary International website for download are the old ones!
Neil Lang
For lots of info on the brand and to view or download various approved versions of Rotary logos, videos, posters and advertisements see:
Note you will be prompted to log into your MyRotary account.
Ninety Four Rotary Fellowships
Check out the many Rotary Fellowship groups which share a hobby or profession such as GOLF.  I belong to the skiing group who meet yearly at some international ski area to alpine ski.  The Golf group meets somewhere for a competition and fellowship.  Other fellowships include cycling, gourmet cooking, genealogists, railroads, Whisk(e)y and yoga.   Bound to be something you are interested in.
         Rotary Club of Edmonton
"Swing Fore Lurana" Golf Tournament
Mark your calendar for Monday August 9th, 2021!!!
The Highland's Golf Club is hosting the Rotary Club of Edmonton's 3rd Annual Golf Tournament. Blessed by Father Mike, who will be with us in spirit.
Register today!
Support has been growing, however we are not there yet. We must decide by early June whether to hold this key fundraise, and "fun" tournament. Our club's somewhat "wait until the last minute" approach to registration is greatly hampering our promotion of the event. 
We need to move quickly towards our goal of 120 golfers. 
If you haven’t signed up already but plan to, please make a point to do so soon. Very soon. If you are not a golfer or cannot attend, you can still promote the event to neighbors, coworkers, clients etc. Please pass information with a link to the registration site on to family, friends, colleagues and associates who wish to play golf, support RCoE and maybe, just a million dollars!
Click on the black graphic above for a closer look and check out our sponsors below.
New Member: Elena Ramirez
I feel so grateful and blessed to be accepted by the Edmonton Rotary Club.  I was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, being a daughter of military father, and my mother a panting artist. I was raised with discipline, but also with love, high ethical standards, good values and love for science and art.  I am the oldest of four children and all of my siblings are in the Medical profession. In year, 2017 I had the honor of joining Club Rotary Plateros Centro Historico in Mexico City.  After completing my degree in Medicine, I moved to Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico, and there enjoyed my 20 years of General Medical practice, and Regenerative Medicine for chronic degenerative diseases, 
anti-aging and Medial tourism. During these years I was blessed with 2 girls. Approx. 10 years ago, I had the opportunity to visit Canada and fell in love with Alberta.  Looking for a better quality of life, we spent the next 3 years completing the long process, that was required to get our Permanent Residence status before we moved to Canada. 

Moving to Canada has been the most amazing and yet shocking
experience in my life, and yet it has not been easy. I arrived with just 1 suitcase, full of hope and dreams. As an immigrant, the English language was not my only barrier. I had to face many challenges, like finding work, getting used to the cold weather, as going. Now that I am settled in Canada, my 2 girls, age 15 and 17, I am spending all my time possible, to study for the exams that are required to be accepted as a Canadian Medical Physician.
My passion is to help people and doing things for my community. I hope that being a Rotarian, I can help people and make a difference in many lives.
Hands on Volunteer opportunity:
Habitat for Humanity ReStore
Sat June 5th morning or afternoon or all day
With the leadership of Yousif Abbas, our club is organizing a volunteer day at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.  As you may know, the ReStore recycles used construction material and helps fund Habitat’s work providing decent homes for needy families in Edmonton.  Habitat is a tremendous organization and our club has worked on their builds over the years.  This year, because of Covid, there are no volunteer builds, but they still need a little help moving inventory around the ReStore.  There are morning, afternoon and full day shifts available with proper social distancing, etc.  Let Yousif if you and any other club members are interested in joining us!  There is NO cost, but a great opportunity to do something together.  The Restore can accommodate up to 10 volunteers at a time.   Steel Toed boots will be provided if you do not have a pair.
Contact Yousif at stating your preferred shift (Morning, Afternoon, or all day).  limit 10 per shift.
ReStore is located at 4004 99 Street NW
Our first totally virtual Rotary Integrity Awards was a terrific success.     Fifteen Rotary and Rotaract clubs honoured sixteen award winners.  This was the highest representation of clubs participating in the Integrity Awards.
Our club honoured a special person well known to our club, Cecilia Blasetti.  Cecilia, former executive director  Boyle McCauley Health Center, spoke at our lunch meetings several times over the years.  Due to the tremendous work of the staff, we have contributed to the Health Centre numerous times.   
Catch our May 31st noon hour meeting for a special presentation to Cecilia!
Many thanks go to Jim Saunderson as the primary co-chair for this event.   He did most of the work and is a great example of Service Above Self.   Virtual hugs to Jim!
The incredible list of nominations included:
Margo Long
Traumatized youth in Edmonton have a passionate champion in Margo Long, President and CEO of Youth Empowerment and Support Services (YESS). Youth facing addiction, mental illness, violence, victimization and criminal involvement find the support they need on their journey towards healing and community integration thanks to Margo and YESS.
John Ashton
John dedicated his life to community involvement. In 1990, Strathcona County’s public art collection consisted of two works. John spearheaded efforts to bring public art and heritage recognition to Sherwood Park. He founded and served as President of the Heritage Mile Society and was Project Manager for the Heritage Mile and Monument Park. A labour of love for John, the Heritage Mile is a tribute to Strathcona County’s rural heritage and gives us a wonderful snapshot of the history of the county.
Clarence Shields
“Get’er done!” is an adage that has become
synonymous with Clarence Shields. Clarence’s legacy
is comprised of his ‘family’ business ventures, his
community service endeavors and his commitment to
his family.  
Mieko Ouchi
an actor, writer, director and filmmaker, understands how powerful a tool theatre can be to engage young people. Theatre can show them the potential consequences of their choices and leave them with a clearer understanding of complex issues.
Cecilia Blasetti
In 2000 Cecilia moved to Edmonton for a
one-year contract at Boyle McCauley Health
Centre; when the year came to an end, she
knew she had found her calling and very
happily stayed until she retired in 2020.
During this time Cecilia worked with
many dedicated staff and board members
who shared her passion for ensuring that the
most marginalized members of our community
receive accessible, high-quality health care.
Kathy Hamelin
Kathy was born and raised in the town of Peace River. While growing up in several foster homes, she experienced things no child should ever endure. She became a lifelong advocate for
Indigenous families and healing through community building, sharing traditional knowledge, and ensuring people get the medicine they need no matter what. “I am not here to judge”.
Kathy is one of the Co-founders of the Sixties Scoop Indigenous Society of Alberta.
Germaine Chau
“The Book Lady” at Sports Central. A big believer in literacy and very committed to helping every child read and develop a love for books. Germaine Chau has personally donated over 10,000 books and makes countless phone calls to fundraise and add to her growing network of book sources. At Sports Central,
once children are outfitted with free sports equipment, they are invited to select three books. Even with a pandemic, Germaine customized her program, packaging books in individual zip lock bags, organized according to age. 
Bernie Travis
Bernie founded the Early Onset Dementia Alberta Foundation (EODAF). She was inspired to do this because of a common frustration with the capacity of the health care system and services to meet the needs of persons experiencing early onset
dementia and their families. Through her passion 
and commitment to persons with early onset dementia, she was able to establish an organization that responded to this need.
Deanna Hagen
Deanna is an RCMP Officer, serving our community for more than 20 years who consistently goes above and beyond the call of duty. Her leadership within the RCMP and voluntary work in the community are exemplary. Deanna joined the RCMP to serve and protect but it is not always about lights and sirens and catching the “bad guys”!  It is about morals, values, survival and finding
your passion.  Deanna was diagnosed with PTSD in 2005 and suffered a duty-related brain injury shortly thereafter, that challenged her to the core.
Dr. Deena Hinshaw; Alberta Health Emergency Operations Centre
This past year has been tumultuous like no other. Extraordinary circumstances have required tough decisions. History will record the devastating fact of how the world stopped due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
John Liston
John has been a vibrant and caring leader in St. Albert for 26 years. In that time he has contributed hugely to many worthwhile community organizations; to use his own words, “I love to serve.”  He was the founder of the T8N100MEN – 100 Men Who Care.
Jeff Tetz
As the founder of SantaYEG, Jeff has made a difference in the lives of thousands of homeless and disadvantaged people in the Edmonton area. Santa YEG is focused on clothing and feeding Edmonton’s homeless population during the winter months. Since
inception in 2014, his group has delivered almost 21,000 meals to the needy in Edmonton’s inner city.
Issa Kamara
Issa Kamara is a peacebuilder who seeks to create cross-cultural
understanding. He is the founder and Executive Director of Sinkunia Community Development Organization (SCDO) an Edmonton based non-profit organization that supports the settlement and integration of African immigrant children, youth and families in the community. Issa has extensive experience in local and international community development work that spans his native country, Sierra Leone, and Canada.
Cassandra Tomas
Cassandra’s passion for running meant she went through a lot of running shoes. This sparked a need for a way to recycle her shoes, extending their life once they were no longer suited for marathons. She was the sole founder of a Soles for Souls chapter here in Alberta. Soles for Souls turns used shoes and clothing into
opportunity, providing disaster relief and fighting poverty by launching small businesses that sell donated shoes and protecting the planet by keeping items out of landfills and extending their lifespan.
Aubrianna Snow
Aubrianna is a tireless advocate for vulnerable students and has worked towards a safer MacEwan University campus. For the last two years, Aubrianna has served as Vice-President Student Life of the Student’s Association of MacEwan University.   She’s taking on new and exciting roles with Healthy Campus Alberta and Kids Help Phone.
Newel Anderson
Newell is an ambitious and passionate individual who works towards creating an inclusive and empowering environment through his cosmetics line. Newel is a trailblazer in his field and has been able to create a sense of belonging and appreciation for thousands of people. Newel and his family arrived in Canada as refugees from civil war, possessing experiences that installed in him a strong work ethic and the desire to make a meaningful impact in the communities around him.
See the full honouree descriptions and photos at:
Here are the links to the 95 minute recording of the integrity awards.  Choose one or the other below.
Makes you want to attend next year's event!
Neil Lang
Integrity Awards co-chair 2021 and 2022.
(looking for another co-chair and committee members)
Consider registering for the online conference especially to view the General sessions held very early each morning: 
Sat Jun 12 - Opportunities to Reflect
Sun Jun 13 - Opportunities to Grow
Wed Jun 16 - Opportunities to Serve
There also will be many breakout sessions plus the House of Fellowship. All online.
Check out the program at: