McHenry Area Rotary distributes $43,415 in grants
Starting in the fall of 2021 and continuing through early this year, the McHenry Area Rotary has distributed 16 grants totaling $43,415 toward local and international academic and humanitarian causes, club leaders announced.
The allocations range from $315 to Johnsburg High School for Advanced Placement testing for college-bound students to grants of $5,000 each to Pioneer Center for Human Services, Youth and Family Center of McHenry County, Kids In Need of McHenry County, and the Wheelchair Foundation, as well as a total of $6,000 in two separate allotments to Home of the Sparrow.
Other grants awarded since September 2021 were:
• $500 to the Wonder Lake Food Pantry;
• $600 to Operation Wild Horse;
• $1,000 to the Johnsburg High School Interact Club;
• $1,500 for Knights of Columbus Council 1288's Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday dinner program for more than 200 needy area families;
• $2,000 for Advanced Placement testing at McHenry High School;
• $2,500 to Feed My Starving Children;
• $3,000 each to the FISH of McHenry Food Pantry, Shelter Box International, and Colorado Rotary District 5450, the latter for local disaster assistance in connection with wildfires there.
"We are proud of our club members for championing all of these worthwhile causes," said Matt Perley, McHenry Area Rotary president. "We're also very proud of our community. It is in large part due to the community's support of our efforts -- and their support of Blues, Brews & BBQ in particular -- that we are able to do what we do."
Blues, Brews & BBQ co-chairmen Don Tonyan and Denis Buch agreed, noting that the more successful the annual fund-raising event is, the greater the good the club can achieve.
"From the AP testing grants that enable students to save thousands of tuition dollars to the emergency food and shelter assistance we've been able to provide -- it just feels really great to be able to contribute in these meaningful ways," Tonyan said. "We hope to keep it all going with another terrific Blues, Brews & BBQ out at Petersen Park this Aug. 19-21."
Buch noted that while coordinating the three-day music, craft beer and food fest requires a lot of effort, the outcomes are gratifying. He, too, said he hopes for an especially successful 2022 event, and invited past and potential contributors to reach out early regarding this year's sponsorship opportunities.
The McHenry Area Rotary Club also coordinates Rotary Secret Santa, which provides thousands of toys to needy families throughout McHenry County each December. Club members meet at noon Thursdays at Buddyz Pizzeria on Green Street. Anyone interested is welcome to come check out a meeting.
To request a Zoom link to attend a meeting virtually, or to request general club information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.