Michelle Patrell

Johnstown Rotary Club President Michelle Patrell.

The Johnstown Rotary Club has launched an effort to assist the community during the difficult road ahead regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through a widespread effort, the organization has developed an action plan to help the poor, mitigate the spread of the disease and encourage others to spend locally.

“The rotary’s stance is to take care of the community,” Johnstown President Michelle Patrell said.

What spurred this plan was the desire of the group’s members to stand as leaders and help others.

Moving forward, the club will model recommended mitigation protocols and also find alternative methods of fundraising.

Part of that undertaking will be asking citizens to wear masks, wash their hands frequently and socially distance.

Patrell said they’ve seen a lot of “great support” for COVID-19 relief efforts, but not much communication on the best practices.

“We actually want to see more of that in our community,” she added.

As part of that endeavor, future in-person meetings will be discontinued in favor of virtual gatherings.

Patrell said the group has seen success with remote efforts recently, such as the annual reverse raffle and Christmas party, and wishes to continue with that format to make sure everyone is safe.

Other efforts of the rotary to support the community include a soup collection drive to benefit area food pantries taking place throughout the month and a push to buy and eat local.

Patrell said the club has been choosing one area restaurant to support each week “from Wooly’s to Eat’n Park” since last summer, and will continue that patronage. 

Additionally, the organization will continue their campaign for residents to purchase goods from regional businesses.

“If you can order from a local store, why wouldn’t you do that?” Patrell said.

Joshua Byers is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @Journo_Josh.

Trending Video

Recommended for you