LA5 and Covid-19
March 18, 2020

In my role at the University I attend daily COVID-19 briefings (offered virtually, by the way) with reports from government officials, physicians, and scientists. They are all saying the same thing: It is essential that we distance ourselves from one another and that we prepare to do so for a lengthy period. 

One of the most disappointing outcomes of this virus is the sudden distance I feel from my Rotary club. LA5 has become such an important part of my life. I find meaning in our work and I count each of you as a friend. As I have made phone calls to many of you, I have sensed that you feel much the same way.

In an attempt to preserve the social fabric of our club, we are going to connect to one another through several platforms. First, I encourage you to reach out to one another by phone. Think of the people you sat with during our last meeting together and give them a call. Ask how they are doing. Using good judgment about matters of privacy, share what you can with me. Perhaps there is a way our club can be of help. I have asked Brenda Wiewell to form a LA5 Care Team. She is looking for other members to partner with her to help respond to member needs as they arise.

Second, continue to read the weekly El Rodeo and respond to its request for feedback. This newsletter has been one of the most unifying initiatives to come out of LA5 in a long time. Malinda Monterossa is doing a fantastic job as its editor. She is committed to keeping it going through this crisis.

Third, from time to time we are going to gather virtually using a platform called ZOOM. In fact, we are going to have a brief ZOOM check-in meeting tomorrow. My guess is that many of you are already using it. If not, let me point you to the ZOOM tutorial linked below. It might help. Also, please note that ZOOM can work on smartphone, tablet, laptop, and desktop. It uses your audio and video system. You have the option to simply call in if you choose. 

Zoom Tutorial

Note: This tutorial features a brief overview of the ZOOM paid subscription plans. You only need the FREE version for our purposes.

During tomorrow’s online meeting we will check-in with each other. We will review ways we might use ZOOM to hold virtual meetings in the future and I will announce this month’s Rotarian of the Month. The caricature is finished and ready to be revealed. Tomorrow’s check-in will be brief. It will serve as a proof-of-concept. It might be a little tricky at first, but I am hopeful it will work. I hope you will join the video call and try it out.