"Back in 1921, when Rotarian Edgar Allen founded the Society for Crippled Children, who knew that what became known as Easter Seals and Rotary itself would become the world leaders in charitable services that they are today?" Dr. Hodgens said.
Targeted for a new day care program at the Easter Seals location in Bradenton, FL, the donation is one of the largest the club awarded this year. Paul Gesko, President and Treasurer of Miller Gesko and Associates of Sarasota, FL serves on the Board of Directors for both Gulf Gate Rotary and Easter Seals. He championed the day care program for inclusion in the Club's recent awards program.
"We raise money all year long for a reason," said club President Jim Pippenger. "We believe strongly in the Rotary motto 'Service above Self' and in the theme of incoming International President Sakuji Tanaka 'Peace through Service'."
BACKGROUND: Rotary International
Rotary international is one of the largest and oldest international service organizations in the world. Founded in 1905 by Paul Harris, it now has over 1.2 million members in 34,000 clubs in over 200 countries and regions. Rotary clubs are nonpolitical and ecumenical. The Sarasota Gulf Gate Rotary Club was founded in 1973. There are a total of 36 members including 11 winter residents. The cumulative Rotary membership for the club members well exceeds 400 years.
BACKGROUND: Easter Seals
Rotarian Edgar F. Allen founded the International Society for Crippled Children in 1921 with help from the Rotary Club of Elyria, OH. Rotary Founder Paul Harris served as Chair of the Society. Providing access to adequate medical care was an important cause to Allen. In 1907, one of Allen's sons died due to lack of medical care after a street car accident. Allen committed himself to building a hospital in Elyria and sold his successful business to devote his efforts to fundraising. On 30 October 1908, the Elyria Memorial Hospital opened. Allen also helped to build the Gates Hospital, the first hospital in the United States devoted to the care of children with disabilities, which opened in 1915.
Daddy Allen, as he was called by the children who knew him, has been credited with coining the phrase “Keep on keeping on.”