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Winnie Stortzum of Vandalia was recently recognized by Rotary International District 6490 “with gratitude for leadership in service to Shelterbox USA.
Stortzum served as first lady of Rotary District 6490 when her husband, Jay, was district governor in 2009-10. District 6490 includes the Vandalia Rotary Club.
Stortzum selected ShelterBox USA as a project to support and promote within District 6490. The district is comprised of 53 Rotary Clubs, with about 2,500 Rotarians, in 25 counties. The project raised more than $85,000 for ShelterBox USA.
ShelterBox USA offers humanitarian aid to victims of disasters. It consists of a tough green plastic box containing a 10-person tent and basic equipment designed to enable a family of up to 10 people survive at least six months.
Boxes are packed disaster-specific and contain high-quality new items, which remain the property of the recipients.
ShelterBox works directly with local organizations in countries where disasters have occurred, or in partnership with other aid agencies, and through the international Rotary network.
Every ShelterBox is individually numbered and donors are advised of the identification number of their box. The final destination of boxes can then be tracked via their international website www.shelterbox.org.
District 6490 is continually accepting donations for this project. The international goal is to raise funds for 50,000 boxes per year. ShelterBoxes have been sent to victims of Hurricane Katrina and more recently to the earthquake-ravaged countries of Haiti and Japan.
More than 57 countries which have suffered disasters have been helped by the international ShelterBox project which was started in 2000. Each box costs $1,000.
All donations to “ShelterBox USA” are tax-deductible. Those who wish to help may send a check payable to ShelterBox USA, c/o Gary Olsen, Shelter Box USA Heartland Regional Representative, 3121 Village Office Place, Village at the Crossing, Champaign, Ill. 61822.