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Omelet Breakfast Benefits Students
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Sunday's annual Super Bowl Breakfast put on by the local Escalon Sunrise Rotary Club was designed to raise money for scholarships for local students, but the organization continues to also reach out in service around the world.

An ongoing project of the club, in fact, will see more work in helping bring clean, filtered water to multiple schools in Mexicali, Mexico.

"It's the second water project we've done with a Rotary Club there," said Escalon member Dave Mantooth. "Originally, we did a playground project, some of our Escalon kids and some from Stockton went down on spring break."

That playground project several years ago paved the way for continued cooperation and eventually resulted in the first water filtration system being put in, benefiting several schools.

"We had built up a rapport with the club in Mexicali, when the playground project ended we asked them to come up with ideas so that we could continue working with them," Mantooth explained.

Putting a water filtration system in for elementary schools provided a variety of benefits, from insuring the clean water supply to helping schools save money by not having to buy bottled water.

Work was done through a combination of grants and fundraising, with the local club raising money that is matched by the District (5220) and then by Rotary International.

"This was a fairly inexpensive way to solve a problem," Mantooth said.

A massive earthquake a couple of years ago impacted many schools in Mexicali, he added, so continuing to work toward a clean, stable water supply is even more important now.

Schools have to contribute as well, with a dedicated area for the system that can be locked and with limited access, as well as having a couple of staff members trained in the use of the system.

The current project has a goal of bringing the filtration system and clean water to 10 schools in the area, said Mantooth. All equipment is purchased in Mexicali, supporting the local economy there, and a trio of Stockton Rotary Clubs have also contributed financially to the project. Mantooth and his wife Sally were able to attend a dedication ceremony following completion of the first filtration system.

"It has been an incredibly successful project," he said. "We're happy to provide them with clean water. For some, it's the only clean water they get."

The Escalon Sunrise Rotary Club is also active in the local community and recently was recognized as the highest per capita fundraising club in the district.