In the spring of 2005, I led a Rotary Group Study Exchange team to District 4180 in southern Mexico.  A part of my heart will always remain with the many friends I made during that visit.  I will always remember the hospitality, dedication to service, and compassion I witnessed in every club I visited and each Rotarian's home where I was hosted.   The recent earthquakes were centered in the very area that became so dear to my heart.
As District Governor in District 5490 in 2009-10, we had another exchange with District 4180, and I had the occasion to attend their District Conference, staying afterward to plan a Friendship and Grants Exchange Conference combined with a wheelchair delivery project in the fall of 2010 in their district in Mexico.  Our current District Governor, Nancy VanPelt participated in that planned event and I saw her passion for Rotary service blossom as she witnessed and experienced the life-changing differences Rotary can make through collaboration with Rotarians in other countries.
At my District Conference in 2010, Past Rotary International President, Frank Devlyn, agreed to be a speaker.  He is one of my favorite Rotary Leaders.  I have never met any other individual who can remember the names and circumstances of people he has met in past encounters as this amazing Rotary leader and friend.  He resides in Mexico City and has first-hand knowledge of the devastation of the recent earthquakes.
Like our District, 4180 was consolidated into a new, combined district, and is now numbered 4185.  A friendship and grants exchange conference with District 4185 is coming up  and will be hosted in our District 5495 this October.  I would encourage you to attend all or part of the conference if at all possible.  CLICK HERE to download a two-page document containing messages recently received from DG Nancy VanPelt, and another from PRIP, Frank Devlyn outlining ways that support can be sent to relieve suffering resulting from the recent earthquakes which impacted the area that has been dear to me since my 2005 visit there.