Rotary Underpinning of Community Support

Submitted by Greg Cappelli

We are often asked what the Ellicottville Rotary does to help and improve the community in which we live. In the words of the Rotary District Governor, “I was very impressed with the extent of your engagement in both your community and the world at large.”

With Rotary’s two affiliates, the Foundation for Youth and Family Support for Ellicottville, Rotary does many projects. With a core of volunteers, 100 percent of funds raised go to support local projects, including a $50,000 building grant that was awarded to the Ellicottville Library. We also fund the library’s summer intern; the summer reading program; iPad, Kindle readers and computers; a new high-speed router for Wi-Fi as well as numerous kid-friendly programs.

Other youth programs at the library are funded by the Foundation for Youth as requested. In 2013, we established the Young Writers & Illustrators Club that provides a fun and educational environment for more than 20 students every week. The club provides a Kids Corner column to the Ellicottville Times newspaper, and has added a book club and fieldtrips for the students.

During the summer months, Rotary supports the park program and an after park reading program that will be complemented with student workshops and activities started this June.

Rotary provides school supplies to students at the start of the school year and supports lunch programs, travel and special projects for those in need at ECS. Every year, we award two $500 scholarships for outstanding graduates of ECS or BOCES. Special requests for eyeglasses, hearing aids or clothing are fulfilled as needed. We also fund two major programs: the Arts in Education project at Essex Arts Center for a class every year, and Rotary SLAPSHOT student leadership program, which provides a unique experience for two students every year.

We provide funding for Little League Football, the Ellicottville Historical Society, the Alley Katz, the Ellicottville Food Bank, Women’s Shelter, Meals on Wheels and many other local organizations.

Rotary’s annual Halloween Party at the American Legion provides a safe, fun environment for more than 200 kids.

We have established the Rotary Auditorium at the new Town Center, a space to enhance the Nannen Arboretum by providing an auditorium and patio for the entire community to enjoy.

Through Family Support for Ellicottville, we provide a quiet helping hand to those less fortunate in the community by providing funds for unexpected medical expenses like transportation to treatment locations. We also provide Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner every year to help make these holidays special for all.

Santa’s Workshop, also aided by Irish Christmas, brings Christmas joy to many families in the community at special times of the year.

So now, you know what your tax-deductible support and purchase of tickets to Tuscan Moon does for the community.

Thanks for helping make Ellicottville a community who cares!