Now Reading
Berks Rotary Service Day for the Environment

Berks Rotary Service Day for the Environment

A new gazebo at the Kernsville Dam parking lot was...

Boyertown Rotary Clubs Fleetwood, Hamburg, and Kutztown dedicated a whole day to the environment.

Robert Hobaugh, Rotary District Governor challenged District 7430 Clubs of to sponsor a Rotary Service Day. He chose April 30, as it coincides with the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, April 22, and Arbor Day, April 29.

Hobaugh stated that each of these days offers a great opportunity to plant trees, clean parks and repair riparian stream or pond banks. He also suggested that you can do pollinator projects to encourage insects to pollinate crops and gardens.

40 of the 46 clubs in Districts were involved in an environmental project. They were located in Berks County, Lehigh County, Northampton, Northampton, and most of Montgomery and Bucks county.

Hobaugh stated that the project brings together all Clubs in our district by helping them do what they already do. This year’s Rotary theme is Serve to Change Lives. We have found that our service not only transforms the lives and lives of those we serve, but also changes our own lives.

Hobaugh thanked the Rotary Clubs and their partners and said, “It is clear that District 7430 Rotarians increased the impact of their service by doing good in this world and inspiring others to do the same.” It changes lives. This service makes our lives better.

He said that Rotary Clubs can tell their stories better if they work together.

“We find that we make and impact not just by doing good in the world but also by telling others about that service, he said. It is inspiring and informative. It inspires others to do good in this world.

While Rotary Clubs have been involved in supporting the environment for decades, Rotary International designated Environmental Sustainability as the organization’s 7th Area of Focus in 2020, effective July 1, 2021.

Terry Reed, Chair of Environmental Sustainability, led the effort to coordinate District Clubs in their commitments to all undertaking an environmental project on the same date.

Rotary supports activities that enhance the conservation and protection natural resources, promote environmental sustainability, foster harmony between peoples and the environment. Reed said that it is a goal of Rotary to increase awareness of environmental issues and to educate and inspire Rotarians, Interactors and other Rotarians to effect positive change.

She explained that Rotary Clubs collaborate with college Rotaract Clubs, student Interact clubs, and Rotary Clubs at high school to promote the Environmental sustainability Teams. Their purpose is to increase awareness of sustainable solutions to restore ecosystems and contribute positively to the environment.

Reed said that we are just starting to plan and explore projects in Berks County and around the world that will have a long-lasting effect on our communities.


Loretta Ottinger, Fleetwood Rotarian served as Rotary Day of Service Coordinator for Fleetwood Rotary Clubs, Hamburg, Muhlenberg Muhlenburg, Kutztown and Reading.

Ottinger stated that there is a strong sense of pride, fellowship, and visibility of Rotarians working in support of the community.

Two projects were chosen by the Rotary Club of Fleetwood.

There were 21 people involved in supporting the environment. These included Rotarians, Interact Club youth, community members and Borough staff. It was a great turnout. said Ottinger. Everyone pitched in and made the work easier.

Fleetwood Interact Club members applied labels to the Fleetwood Borough storm drain drainage grates with a warning sign, No Dumping! Fleetwood Rotary Day of Service: Drains to Creek (Submitted photo)

Volunteers installed warning labels with an illustration showing a fish, which read, “No Dumping!” Drains to Creek at the Fleetwood Borough storm drain drainage grates. This label is required by the state under Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System regulations, in conjunction with Department of Environmental Protection, in order to protect waterways against harmful discharge.

Fleetwood Community Park was also visited by volunteers who were directed by borough staff to clean up and mulch trails that lead to the exercise stations. These stations were purchased by Rotary and other civic organizations in order for the community’s better health. They also mulched around playground equipment in the park.

The Fleetwood Rotary Day of Service included mulching playground areas at the Fleetwood Community Park. (Submitted photo)
Fleetwood Rotary Day of Service consisted of mulching the playgrounds at Fleetwood Community Park. (Submitted photo)

Ottinger said that we arrived prepared with our gardening tools, such as shovels, gloves, and were able to move mulch piles and label drains together in just one morning. Although it’s difficult to make an impression as one person, there are 1.4 million Rotarians who can help make the world a better environment and build peace.

Fleetwood Rotarian Tammy Gore was the organizer of the Fleetwood Rotary Day of Service.

“The real joy of this event was that we had many people coming together throughout the area with the sole purpose of improving our communities for the day,” said Gore. “A single person may think it is hard to have an impact, but with 1.4 million Rotarians worldwide, we can make the world a better place through our environmental, humanitarian and educational projects, with the goal of building a better world. The Rotary 4-way Test asks four questions: Is it truthful, fair to all, will it build goodwill and better friendships, and will it be beneficial to all? This is the hallmark of Rotarys throughout the world, and guides all that is done.”


Boyertown Rotary Club, in collaboration with the Borough Of Boyertown, organized a community-wide cleanup that included collecting trash along roadsides.

Boyertown Rotary President Stephanie Landis said that she hopes that the community of Boyertown will not only be maintained and looked after, but that it will also inspire residents to take care of their town.

Boyertown Rotarian Wendy Barton and volunteer Joan Spence collect trash along Gehringer Road for the Boyertown Rotary Club Day of Service. (Submitted photo)
Boyertown Rotarian Wendy Barton, and Joan Spence, volunteer, collect trash along Gehringer Road in Boyertown for the Boyertown Rotary Club Day of Service. (Submitted photo)

Boyertown Rotarians and community volunteers pulled weeds at the General Spaatz Memorial Plaza and planted flowers. They also picked-up trash from the borough and supported the electronics recycle program in Boyertown Community Park.

Boyertown Mayor Lori Carnes said that it was a beautiful day with lots of good things taking place. I hope their leadership in this Day of Service inspires others to take pride and clean up their community. Help each other! Every day can become a day of service.


A town clean-up was sponsored by the Rotary Club Hamburg and Our Town Foundation. Hamburg Borough was clean up by volunteers.

Working together with other community groups allows us to share resources as well as contacts. This makes it easier for residents to feel connected and makes the town cleaner, stated Kay Greenawalt, Hamburg Rotarian.

Our Town Foundation and Hamburg Rotary Club sponsored a town clean up for Rotary Day of Service. (Submitted photo)
Our Town Foundation and Hamburg Rotary Club sponsored a clean-up of the town for Rotary Day of Service. (Submitted photo)

A dedication was also held at the Kernsville Dam Parking Lot for a new pavilion. The project was initiated by the Hamburg Rotary Club and Blue Mountain Wildlife Associaiton. The Rotary Club applied to receive a matching grant for $4,500. The Association then contributed the remainder. The Greenacres of Hamburg, Allentown built the gazebo.

Blue Mountain Wildlife just decided to do something in that area to allow people to rest and relax. Greenawalt said. This location was chosen because it offers the best view of the Blue Mountains and the reclaimed distilling basin.

Hamburg Rotary also hosted an open house for bee-house builders. Two Rotarians donated the materials for participants to build a beehouse to use in their gardens. They will be installed at Kernsville Butterfly Gardens.

Greenawalt stated that Pennsylvania has over 10,000 native bee species. This workshop is intended to raise awareness about native bee populations and the importance of bees in pollinating gardens and farms.

Greenawalt spoke out about Rotary’s environmental focus. He said that each of us can make a difference on the environment, regardless how small or large the project. This initiative, with the large number of Rotary members, will have a significant impact on our local and international projects.


Kutztown Rotary Club partnered Kutztown Community Partnerships Kutztown Thriving to complete the Rotary Day Of Service project at the pollinator-friendly garden at the Welcome to the Kutztown sign, Greenwich Street.

Robyn Underwood, of Kutztown Thriving, said that the pollinator garden attracts pollinators like monarchs, native honeybees, and birds and provides habitat and food for those birds that overwinter here in Kutztown.

It is always a lot of fun to see native wildflowers in the wild.

The garden is a place of beauty and joy for all who stop to look at the flowers and the bees. Her favorite thing about the garden is watching monarch caterpillars eat happily.

The community has been happy to see thegardengrow. Underwood stated that some of the plants can get very tall and may fall over during storms.

Kutztown Rotary Club partnered with Kutztown Thriving for the Rotary Day of Service project at the pollinator garden. Building a fence at the garden are John Galbraith and Charyn Ayoub with Connie Lawrence standing nearby. (Submitted photo)
Kutztown Thriving and Kutztown Rotary Club joined forces to help with the Rotary Day of Services project at the pollinator gardens. John Galbraith with Charyn Asyoub, and Connie Lawrence standing near the garden fence. (Submitted photo)

The Rotary Day of Service project involved installing a fence to support plants so they can stay upright and off the sidewalk. It also added curb appeal to thegarden.

It was planted in a prairie style and is kept tidy. The fence will give the look some structure and neatness.

Volunteers also removed the plants from the space within two feet. These plants will be mulched to keep it cleaner.

Underwood said that Kutztown Thriving was thrilled when Rotary approached it.

Many hands do light work, and we are grateful for their efforts. In the past, we’ve just maintained the garden to remove weeds. Underwood said that this year, with the fence being installed, there is more work to do.

We are delighted to be working alongside another community group that does positive work in Kutztown, and the surrounding region. She added that she hopes to forge new friendships with the group and build a network in order to find new ways to support the community and work together.

KCP has really made an impact inKutztownand it is something we are proud to be a member of. Melissa Kirk, Kutztown Rotarian said that the organization will allow us to expand our Clubs volunteer efforts. It is possible to make a greater impact on the town when community groups work together. It also creates a ripple effect that spreads goodwill throughout the town.

Kirk is especially excited about Rotary’s new environmental initiative.

It is now the 7th Area for Focus for Rotary. I believe it has the potential to make a real difference in the world, with the power of Rotary behind.

View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.