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"Camp Sunshine"
MY “story” this month is on Camp Sunshine on Sebago Lake.  This is a camp for children and their families.  There is a child in each the family with a life threatening disease and all the families there on a specific week have a child with similar diseases.  When I became District Governor in 1997, Immediate Past District Governor Craig Wellman wanted to know if we could do a project at Camp Sunshine as he did not get it done in his year.  I agreed but required him to be the chair of that committee.  Craig got many carpenters and non-carpenters involved.  It became a district wide event!  We were going to shingle and stain their activity center that was a quarter mile around it in one weekend in September.  We constantly publicized it, encouraged Rotarians and families to come take part.  We had bright yellow t-shirts ordered with the Rotary Wheel on the back along with Camp Sunshine logo.  There were newspaper reporters and television cameras on site on Saturday along with over 350 Rotarians and family members.  It was a site to behold – bright yellow backs all displaying Rotary and Camp Sunshine as they were busy working.  I was never more proud to be a Rotarian!  Everyone had a job whether it was putting up shingles, staining them, picking up scraps, delivering drinks to the workers and preparing and serving meals.  We had one 80 old gentleman who wanted to help and putting him on a ladder or staging was not the thing to do so I had him help with registration.  It was the best thing I did that day!   He had so much enthusiasm it was contagious!  We had food donated and the Wells Rotary Club put on a Chicken BBQ for those in attendance.  On Saturday night a group of “Rotary Workers” went into Windham to the grocery store still wearing their Yellow t-shirts and had people come up to them and say “we just saw you on TV” and wanted to know if they could help on Sunday!  We had non-Rotarians show up on Sunday along with all the Rotarians again and guess what – “WE DID IT!”  The entire building was shingled and stained by the time we stopped on Sunday.  The owner and the contractor were both there and said they didn’t believe we could do it in one weekend!  The contractor told me that Rotary saved Camp Sunshine $60,000 that weekend and that the area around the building was neater than if his crew had done it!  I was so proud of this District and its Rotarians and thanks to PDG Craig Wellman, PDG George Rice and PP Lee Hanson, these guys were the driving force behind it, they made it happen in September 1997. 
In addition to shingling the activity building, in 1997-1998 I was promoting literacy and I asked for donations of books for Camp Sunshine so that every child sick or healthy the summer of 1998 would leave Camp Sunshine with a book – ONCE AGAIN you did it!  My husband, Bruce, and I delivered over 400 books to Camp Sunshine in May 1998.  Everyone who participated that year whether in helping with the shingling, painting or books made a difference in a child and their family’s lives and I couldn’t have been prouder to be a Rotarian! 
If you were there that weekend, PLEASE Share your “story” with me and the District.  Also, if you see Lee Hanson from the Wells Rotary club thank him for going back and putting the sunburst design over the front door of this building.  ROTARIANS ARE WONDERFUL PEOPLE!!
Story by Marie A. Williams, PDG August 2016
From: Nancy Hawes []
Sent: Monday, August 1, 2016 9:29 AM
To: Marie Williams ( 
Subject: Your Rotary story
Thanks for the memories your story brought back. What I remember from that day:
It was the same day as Princess Diana’s funeral and I was sobbing on the way to Camp Sunshine;
Dan Mooers wanted me to get something out of his car and he tossed me his keys from the top of a ladder so I could go get it for him. I thought that was a little unchivalrous of him until I found out later that he was so sore he could hardly get down!
Hope you’re having a good summer!
Nancy Hawes
Editor's Note:  There were a lot of sore muscles and bodies that weekend and my husband was another one!
I got one reply in the month of September from Bill Drapeau from the Rotary Club of Durham-Great Bay, NH.  See his story below.
Friday, September 2, 2016 10:36 AM Bill Drapeau wrote:
On Sept 7 1997 some 250-300 Rotarians turned out at Camp Sunshine to put siding shakes on what is now the main building.  In Sept 1999 about 100 turned out to side the two family bldgs. And stain the main bldg.  In 2013 (I think) during the year (Getting old) Peter Johnsons wife’s term.  About 30 or 40 showed up to do a relandscaping project.  I can get the dates in Question if needed.  Any questions please call me at 603 659 7992.  After 1997 my wife and I have been heavily involved with C/S.  I have served on the Board of Directors for the past 7 years I would be willing to answer any questions.  Bill Drapeau Durham Great Bay.”
I emailed Bill and he sent me additional information as follows:
“I should also mention that on 4 occasions 3 or 4 members of DGB came up to C/S with me to do volunteer work  Three days was given cutting down and chipping dead trees.  The fourth time it may have been 6-9 members who spent the days pruning, weeding etc.”
“The trips and work were the result of my being on the bd (Board of Directors) and a member of DGB (Durham Great Bay).  Current members. John Belcher, Rich Whitney, Ric Erickson, Tom Crosby.  Former mbrs John Ramsay, Henry Brackett, Art Bradbury. (Late) Bob McDonough.  Best I can remember.”
THANK YOU BILL FOR SHARING YOUR MEMORIES!  PLEASE note that as the result on one Rotary Service Project, Bill Drapeau continued his work with Camp Sunshine, became a member of the Board of Directors and got others involved from his club to continue going back to work.