Our landscape stretches the imagination with national forests, wildlife refuges, farmlands, urban development, beaches, hills, swamps, bayous and the mighty Mississippi River.  District 6840 Rotarians are People of Action - Improving lives and communities locally and globally. Projects big and small, right here at home and across the world, built through principles of sustainability and community connection. Serving Southeast Louisiana and Southern Mississippi.
Unites the diverse cultures of Southeast Louisiana and South Mississippi.
The District embodies the multicultural flavors of many, all blended in our varied cuisine, festivals and Southern Hospitality.
Rotary Between the Lines
Greetings from the Gabby Governor
Did You Know?
When I was younger, I tried to start a hide-and-seek team.  It didn’t work out.  The really good players were hard to find.
Should everyone have access to clean drinking water?  What about water for cooking meals, bathing, or DRINKING?  This is something most of us take for granted.  We know clear, clean, drinkable water will always be there.
This is not the case in many parts of the world.  Women and children can spend more than four or five hours, each day, walking to get water.  And, in many cases, this is water from the local river.  More than 800,000 people die each day from diseases contracted from drinking unsafe water.
I am asking every club in the district to be part of a district-wide effort to raise funds for HANWASH.  WHY HAITI? First, Why Not Haiti? To be a little more specific, HANWASH has started an initiative that will provide the entire country with access to clean water.   It has been discovered that well-meaning organizations, like Rotary, have in the past, gone in and provided what they believed to be a solution to providing an area, in great need of drinkable water, a water well.  A few years later the well stops working.  No one in the area knows how to repair the well, and even if they did no one knows where to get the needed parts.  So, the well stays broken!   HANWASH has come up with a solution to the problem.  Folks from the local area are part of HANWASH.  Locals are also taught how to maintain the water system.  In addition, parts are found locally.  And, the missing puzzle piece has been identified.  Locals are also charged a small fee to have this service.  We now realize that when someone pays for something they put a greater value on it.  HANWASH is not a short-term band-aid.  HANWASH is a long-term solution!  We all know Haiti is one of the hardest places in the world to get anything accomplished.  Rotary feels if it can accomplish this goal in Haiti, it can do so anywhere in the world. 
Ryan Rowe, Executive Director of HANWASH will be a featured speaker at our district conference in May.  Wouldn’t it be great if we could present him with a big fat check to help support HANWASH efforts?  (Note:  PDG Brain Hall, from the Covington Club, is also HANWASH treasurer.  Give Brian a call and he will gladly speak at your club.)
The goal is to have every club in 6840 take part in this very meaningful service project. Let us join forces so that together we can make a difference.  We can’t change the whole world but we can change the world for one small part of it.  PLEASE SAY YES!
Checks should be made out to:  Rotary 6840 Foundation, c/o Brian Hall.
Information on HANWASH can also be found on the district website.  Or, give me a call.
Yours in service,
Vicky Gutierrez
It’s a Great Day to be a Rotarian!
Remember to have FUN!!
May 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 2024
On October 1st it will go to $40
Registration includes all conference general sessions and breakouts. (Meals not included.)
Registration will be required to attend the Friday Night Food Fest.
YOUR Admission to Food Fest INCLUDES
you and your family. 
All Food, Drink, AND Entertainment Included!
Live BAND.

Turkey and Syria were struck by a devastating earthquake on 6 February that has killed tens of thousands of people, destroyed thousands of homes and other structures, and left people across the region without shelter in bitterly cold winter weather.

The Rotary world responded to this catastrophe immediately. RI President Jennifer Jones activated our disaster response efforts, communicated with the affected districts, and encouraged governors in those regions to apply for disaster response grants and share information about their relief efforts so that Rotary can amplify the calls for support.

The Rotary Foundation Trustees decided that all donations made, from now until 31 March, to the Turkey/Syria Disaster Response Fund will be used to aid earthquake relief projects through disaster response grants

Here's how to have the greatest impact:

  • Give to Turkey/Syria Disaster Response Fund. Donations help clubs and districts provide aid and support rebuilding efforts where the need is greatest. The funds are distributed to affected communities through disaster response grants. 
  • Support local initiatives. As we learn about local response efforts that are being led by clubs and districts, Rotary raises awareness about how to support them. People can then support these projects by working directly with Rotary members in the region. Contact us to share information about local response efforts.

Rotary's project partner ShelterBox’s team is in Turkey, collaborating closely with Rotary district leaders to respond to provide people affected by the earthquake with tents and essential aid items they need. Visit ShelterBox’s website for the most current updates on how we are collaborating to respond. 

What better way to spend your weekend than swinging the golf clubs to raise money for student scholarships along the Coast?

The Gautier Rotary Club is set to host their 36th annual Student Scholarship Golf Tournament at the Hickory Hill Golf Club. The Rotary Club tries to give away 15 to 30 thousand dollars worth of scholarships back to students every year.

Sponsors can enjoy a great day on the course while giving back to the community and promoting their businesses. All golfers will receive goody bags, lunch, dinner, refreshments, and prizes.

The Tournament Chair states that the requirements for students applying for the scholarships. “There’s an application process that the guidance counselors handle. They get the applications to our scholarship committee. Financial need, class rank, community service, ACT scores, types of AP classes, and those things will help them land those scholarships.”

Within 30 years, the Rotary Club has given away over half a million dollars towards scholarships for local students.


After a long hiatus due to COVID, plans are underway for a D6840 Rotary Friendship Exchange (RFE) trip to New Zealand in April 2024!  Accommodations are usually bed-and-breakfast style in Rotarian homes, except for perhaps the arrival night and pre-departure night, depending on convenient access to the airports involved.  Meals other than breakfast, are sometimes hosted by Rotary clubs or hosts, but there will likely be additional meal expenses for visitors at restaurants, admissions, special outings, etc.  
A huge advantage for these RFE trips is the local Rotarians who know the special features, events, or opportunities that an ordinary tourist would never know about.  Usually, over a 2-week period, visitors would have 4-5 different host families, for 3-4 days each.
This trip will be for the southern part of New Zealand’s North Island for the first week, and the South Island for the second week.
            Fly into Wellington on April 5, 2024
            Fly from Wellington to Dunedin on Friday, April 12, 2024
            Fly from Queenstown on Friday, April 19, 2024
The major expenses are the flights to and from NZ, and in this case, flights in-country since we will be visiting both islands.  Land transportation is usually by van, with the expense of the van rental shared among the visitors, with locals to do the driving.  
  • Having a sense of adventure, flexibility, a sense of humor, and a go-with-the-flow attitude are features of a happy and successful visit!  It is NOT like 2 weeks in a Marriott!  It is a unique opportunity for some wonderful friendships and special experiences.  
  • Personal travel is fine before or after the PLANNED RFE program, but it is really important to stay with the plan during the program planned by our hosts.  
  • Ideally, an RFE program may be the catalyst for joint service projects, and/or Global Grant partnerships, etc. 
New Zealand is a FANTASTIC land, with warm and delightful Rotarians.  This is a TERRIFIC opportunity and may get oversubscribed.  Therefore, PLEASE let me know ASAP if you are interested in going!!  It will not necessarily be a first-come-first-served situation, since our committee may need to form a group of no more than 12 with some folks who have not previously had a chance for one of these rich Rotary experiences.  
Yours in Rotary service,        
Karen Babin
ksbabin@gmail.com, 518-588-9096
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