Waunakee Rotarians may not know just how much of a difference their contributions make to others. Because of the club’s contribution to a library in Africa, many lives are changing. 


Gary Muldoon from the Madison Breakfast Club coordinates Books for the World and started a nonprofit setting up libraries and computer labs, such as one in Nairobi. 

He spoke to the club at the Sept. 1 meeting, noting Waunakee Rotary contributed to a district grant allowing the Kongoni Community Library to be built with matching grants from organizations there. 

The library has meeting rooms and even a youth hostel area upstairs for visitors from around the county to stay, Gary said, adding many people there walk. It hosts classes, camps, Boy Scout meetings and workshops, changing kids’s lives and adults’ lives, Gary said. 

Culinary classes offered there teach people to work in local restaurants, too. The library has been renamed the Resource, Recreation and Empowerment Center, Gary said. 

Gary talked about Books Around the World, with Rotary Clubs in the United States collecting used books from libraries and schools to ship to countries with few educational resources. 

It began in Texas in 2000 as a partnership between a South African and the U.S. Rotary club. 

In 2005, the Wisconsin operation began, and in a typical year, five truckloads of books are shipped to places in Africa. 

After they are collected, sorted and packed in Wisconsin, pallets go to Houston, Texas, and from there are shipped by cargo. Second Wind Foundation gets them to Houston, and from there, Rotary Clubs in the receiving countries pay the shipping costs. 

Many Madison businesses help with in-kind donations, including Hallman Lindsay, where books can be dropped off to be delivered to the Books for the World warehouse at MATC. 

The cargo containers are often reused once they arrive in the various countries, sometimes as rooms. 

Gary said in some African countries, people don’t have books, and schools and universities don’t have libraries. Having a small library is a big deal there, he said. 

Gary encouraged club members to help pack books Saturday mornings. For information, email 





Other News

-Khaja Rosenkist spoke about her experience with the World Affairs seminar at Carroll College the past two years. She thanked the club for sponsoring her. It sounded like she learned a lot and really enjoyed herself. 

-The club inducted Tony Burns as a new member. Welcome, Tony!

-A signup sheet was passed around for the Bishops Bay gathering Sept. 6. 

-Tickets are nearly sold out for the Sept. 7 Bourbon tasting, so if you plan to go, get yours right away.

-Wauktoberfest is still in need of volunteers, especially that Saturday afternoon when the Badgers are playing. 

-Ellen Schaaf, Chamber Director, thanked the club for their contributions at the WaunaFest Run and gave a few t-shirts to members. 


Guests: Khaja Rosenkist, guest of the club; Liz Meueller, guest of Jennifer Tasker; Gene Smith, guest of Mick Holm. 


Visiting Rotarians: Gary Muldoon, speaker. 


Birthdays: Sept. 10, Kevin Kearney; Sept. 14, Fritz Durst.


Anniversaries: Sept. 9, Linda and Don Olson; Sept. 14, Dan and Kimberly Evans; Sept. 14, Jennifer and Edward Hurley.


Greeters: Sept. 8, Jennifer Tasker and Howard Teeter; Sept. 15, Don Tierney and Bret Toftness; Sept, 22, Jon Townley and Max Ujdak; Sept. 29, Susan Vergeront and Ryan Walsh.