Brazilian Arch C. Klumph Society member driven to 'move mountains'
Major Donors Virgilio and Nina Pina (center) are the first Brazilian members of the Arch C. Klumph Society. From left: RI President-elect Dong Kurn Lee, Rotary Foundation Trustee Chair-elect Jonathan Majiyagbe, the Pinas, Past RI President William Boyd, Past RI President Glenn Estess Sr., and Foundation Trustee Chair Robert Scott.Photo by Alyce Henson/Rotary Images
Sometimes it takes a Herculean effort to turn a dream into reality. Past District Governor Helmut Keitel says that’s not a problem for Rotary Foundation donor Virgilio Pina of Brazil, who takes on every challenge in overdrive.
Keitel, of Wisconsin, USA, calls Pina “a man who can move mountains. If I were to ask Virgilio what is the heaviest burden you can carry, his answer would be having nothing to carry.”
Pina has transformed dreams into reality many times. A member of the Rotary Club of Santos-José Bonifácio, São Paulo, he was the driving force behind the club’s formation in 2006 and served as its first president. He has also led by example in promoting club support for the Foundation’s Annual Programs Fund, contributing approximately US$255,000 to the fund since the club’s founding.
In addition, Pina challenged club members to become Paul Harris Fellows by offering to match their $500 contributions with his available Foundation recognition points. His plan resulted in 55 new Paul Harris Fellows and raised more than $25,450 for the Foundation. He has offered to continue the challenge until every member of the club is a Paul Harris Fellow.
Under Pina’s leadership, Santos-José Bonifácio became the world’s highest per capita contributing club to the Annual Programs Fund in 2006-07, averaging $6,054.63 per member. This helped propel District 4420 to the top as the highest per capita contributing district worldwide at $394.59 per member. Moreover, the club’s membership increased from 45 to 153. It now has 162 members and is the largest club in the district.
Pina is also helping his club organize a network of public health clinics in Santos through a joint project of districts 4420 and 6250 (parts of Minnesota and Wisconsin, USA).
“The first clinic serves a needy population of approximately 10,000 people,” he says. “It is one of 12 that will be funded by partnerships with private companies. All the equipment and material will be funded by Rotary Foundation Matching Grants.”
“Virgilio decided that the poor have the same right to good medical facilities as the rich,” said Keitel at a ceremony inducting the Pinas into the Arch C. Klumph Society at RI World Headquarters on 19 February. The society is named after the founder of the Foundation and honors supporters who contribute $250,000 or more.
“The gifts that you share change lives,” said 2007-08 Foundation Trustee Chair Robert S. Scott of the Pinas’ generous Foundation support. “Your gifts bring food, education, water, and medicine to those who are hungry, who are thirsty, and who yearn for a dignified life, to which all human beings are entitled.”
Pina says that Rotarians are well-equipped to make life better for others. “Rotary International is a tool that allows any Rotarian to transform the dream of serving into reality. When a Rotarian gets involved in Rotary, there are no limits to the capacity to serve.”