TJ Orphanage Update - the Last Mile
First work trip to orphanage for new year was Friday, January 8th. Joining on this trip were Greg Bowers(Lake Elsinore), Don Phinney(Murrieta), Tom Thomas(Lake Elsinore), Dee Thomas(Lake Elsinore), Sue Dell'Acqua(Hemet Sunrise and wife of 5330 DG) and Kent Demuth (Temecula and taking picture).
The project is in the final stages of cleanup: outside trim, more dry wall (will it ever end), bathrooms, new counter work area in kitchen. Other items remaining include: final paint inside and outside, gutters, more blocking and caulking outside, and carpet for the upstairs area.
With over 50 volunteers all together from area clubs and our Tijuana Rotary partners, work has continued through out the summer, fall and now winter. With only one true professional in the bunch, the team is finally seeing the finish line and "we are all proud to be part of the team".
Funding is an ongoing issue for the project.
Program Speaker for next meeting
Vanessa Cantopolis, Ambassadorial Scholarship recipient, who has just completed her studies in England.
This was a very good Christmas for Casa Hogar Impacto de Amor, thanks to a great partnership of Rotarians from both sides of the border. The orphanage renovation is almost completed. On December 18th, the Tijuana Independencia Rotary Club hosted a fund raiser for the orphanage featuring opera tenor Cesar Sanchez. On Sunday, December 20, Rotary Club of Temecula, Lake Elsinore Rotary and Tijuana Independencia Rotary Club with assistance from Menifee Rotary, San Bernardino Sunset, our District Governor Rich and his wife Sue, MOMS Club Temecula-Central and several other friends of Rotary gave the children of the orphanage a Christmas party that they will not soon forget.
For the children, the highlight was the visit by Santa Claus and the Christmas pinata. The participating clubs and supporting individuals gave the children new clothes, toys, blankets and "Mom" a shopping spree to buy things for the older children and the home.
It may seem like a lifetime to those traveling down to Casa Hogar Impacto de Amor over the past year. Just a little over a year ago Lake Elsinore Rotary, Rotary Club of Temecula and the Tijuana Independencia Rotary Club undertook a project to renovate the orphanage.
When we made the commitment to undertake the project it was an easy decision. In February 2009 there there 10 children and two adults living in small two room Tijuana house with an add-on area for bedrooms for the children, unsafe electrical, no place for all to set down for a meal, outdoor cold water bath. Click for more articles.
After initial fund raising efforts, work began in July 2009. Now we are almost there! Most of the outside is painted, the upstairs "indoor" bath, with hot water, is one trip away from being finished, upstairs dry wall is finished, flooring is expected next week for the upstairs and final painting is planned for next Friday.
Sometimes its hard to believe where we started.
Thanks to Rotarians and friends from both sides of the border we have the end in sight.
A special thanks to the members of MOMS - Temecula Central.
Several months ago April Jacobsen, club member Leif Jacobsen's wife, heard about our work with the TJ Orphanage. She and the members of her MOMS (Moms Offering Moms Support) Club offered to make blankets for the children. Her group shown here completed 24 blankets given to the orphanage at the Orphanage Christmas Party.
April, once again, a big thank you on behalf of the Rotary Club of Temecula and the orphanage.