Rick Volpe Receives RotaCare’s Humanitarian Service Award


Due to the pandemic, RotaCare held their first virtual Phantom Ball fundraiser earlier this summer in support of its work to facilitate free health care for the relief of pain and suffering to those who have the most need and the least access to medical care.

The Phantom Ball honored Rick Volpe, President and CEO of Van Buren Buick GMC with a Humanitarian Service Award. Community service has been part of Volpe’s life for many years. As a member of the Ed Smith Mineola Lions Club for more than 25 years, he served as president of the club twice. As a Lion, Volpe has helped raise a tremendous amount of money distributed to local charities that support the blind and blind causes.

The Phantom Ball raised an unprecedented $75,000. Patrons were able to purchase traditional sponsorships and journal ads as if they were attending a traditional gala. Since an in-person event was fogoed, the Phantom Ball allowed RotaCare to raise funds needed without the added costs of an event. This results in even more contributions directly supporting RotaCare’s lifesaving work.

There are more than 28 million people in this country without health insurance. A great number of the uninsured are the working poor who are often in dire need of medical attention and have little or no access to health care.

To address the needs of the uninsured in Nassau County, RotaCare was initiated in 1992 by members of the Mineola-Garden City Rotary Club working with the Interfaith Nutrition Network (INN) and local hospitals and other community minded people.

An all-volunteer operation, the doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses and clerical staff all are committed to giving quality health care to those in need. RotaCare was adopted as a Rotary District 7250 project and has been supported ever since by Rotary clubs and other concerned companies, organizations and individuals.  Every year, more than 100 volunteers handle more than 2,000 patient visits. For these individuals, it’s the road back to a healthy and productive life.

The Mineola-Garden City Rotary Club recognizes the seven members of  the club who serve on the RotaCare Board of Directors. They are Jim Brady, Gary Fishberg, Tom Gelsdorf, Bob Schoelle, Helmut Schuler, the Very Rev. Michael Sniffen and Ray Sikorski.

Upcoming Speakers for September

Tuesday, Sept. 14 at 12:15 p.m. at Calogero’s Restaurant—John Feyrer, digital expert, will speak on how technology has changed the world.

Tuesday, Sept. 28 at 12:15 p.m. at Calogero’s Restaurant—Nassau County Executive Laura Curran will report on the county’s current issues and concerns.

—Submitted by the Mineola-Garden City Rotary Club

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