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Rotary Grand Tour Pan-American Adventure Under the Mango Tree Club Innovation

The Official Magazine of Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland


6 20 26 28 December/January 2018


How Hollywood is tackling the issue of polio

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16 20 ©Imaginarium


CONTENTS ROTARY IN ACTION Rotary Grand Tour 6 Champion of Change awards 8 Magazine subscription 12 18 A defib saved my life Pan-American adventure 20 28 Club Innovation Apprenticeship 31 Seeking shelter 32 36 Michael Caruso Community Heartbeat 44

REGULARS Letters to the Editor Talk from the Top


Rotary International President


Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland President


The Rotary Foundation Trustee Chair


RI Director


It's Gone Viral


People of Action


32 GLOBAL IMPACT Breathe feature Peacebuilding Conference Priti Patel on polio Peace Award Under the Mango Tree

4 14 16 24 26

And Finally… 50

Rotary Grand Tour


Cover image ©Imaginarium

Get in touch Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland Kinwarton Road, Alcester, Warwickshire B49 6PB t: 01789 765 411 Editor: Dave King e: PR Officer: e: Designer: Martin Tandy e: Advertising: Media Shed (Agent for Rotary) Contact: Gareth Macfarlane t: 01354 818009 e:

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Two minutes away from death Polio sufferer Robin Cavendish was one of the UK’s first advocates for disability rights. Now Hollywood has taken hold of his remarkable story, which reached the silver screen this autumn and supported by Rotary.


WO minutes away from death at any moment – that was the chilling reality for polio sufferer Robin Cavendish MBE, whose incredible story has captured the hearts and minds of Hollywood. To coincide with World Polio Day in October, the film Breathe opened at cinemas across the UK, with a number of Rotary districts hosting charity screenings. Breathe is an inspirational true love story focussing on one man’s battle against polio. It’s about love without limits, and at its heart the movie is a celebration of positivity, bravery and human possibility. The film is based on the incredible true story of producer Jonathan Cavendish’s parents, showing how Robin’s handling and reaction to his illness had a huge impact on mobility and access for the disabled. “It didn’t seem odd to me that I was living at home with someone who was two minutes from death at any moment,” explained Jonathan. “But I realised, even as a young person, that my parents really loved

one another which helped them achieve everything they did, against the odds.” Robin Cavendish contracted polio at the age of 28 while living in Kenya. He was paralysed from the neck down, confined to a hospital bed with a respirator and given only months to live. However, with the encouragement and help of his wife Diana, Robin spent the rest of his life advocating for people with disabilities, and popularising a new wheelchair with a built-in respirator. Speaking at the film’s European premiere in London, Jonathan, who is featured in the movie, described Breathe as “probably the most expensive home movie ever made”. “The message of this film is that you can achieve anything if you have the right people around you,” he added. “If you put everything into your relationship and really go for it, life will start looking rosier and better.” Jonathan joined Eve Conway, Vice Chairman of Rotary International’s End Polio Now: Countdown to History Campaign Committee, for a question and answer session with the audience after the film’s screening in Leicester Square

to launch the London Film Festival in October. “The thing to remember about the 1960s is that we were all frightened about the things we didn’t know,” recalled Jonathan. “Nobody had ever met anybody with that degree of disability. "People were frightened by polio. "People would shout at us in the street complaining about my father being in a wheelchair when he should have been in hospital. Can you imagine that? “However my dad was a very nice, inspirational and charming man, something which has been captured in the film. My dad wanted to put everyone else at ease and imbued that spirit with other disabled people who he encouraged to move out of hospital.” Robin’s mother Diana Cavendish, who is played by the actress Claire Foy, said she loved watching the film. Now aged 83, and speaking at the red carpet premiere hosted by the British Film Institute, she said: “I decided I was going to adopt a very detached attitude. "My grandson told me to pretend it is somebody else. But I think they have made a really good job of it.


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“It didn’t seem odd to me that I was living at home with someone who was two minutes from death at any moment.”

“It is a long time ago but when it all first happened people who were as badly disabled as Robin were told they weren’t to leave hospital. If it hadn’t have been for the late legendary Professor Teddy Hall CBE, and his revolutionary chair, we wouldn’t have got anywhere.” Golden Globe winner Claire Foy described Diana as a down-to-earth and very humble woman. “When I met Diana, everything about her impressed me,” explained Claire. “She is an extraordinary woman, with her strength, her bravery and her love for her husband. Everything she did is extraordinary, and I am really pleased the story has been told.” This film, which was first screened at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, is directed by Andy Serkis and written by twice Academy Award-

nominated writer, William Nicholson OBE. “Robin and Diana were extraordinary people,” explained Andy. “They broke the mould. They were mavericks of their time, not settling for the limitations they were given about living life in a hospital waiting for death. “It was about the risks that they took, and then the joy they had as a result of that which then went on to inspire millions of others. It is quite extraordinary.” At the heart of this movie about polio is a celebration of positivity, bravery and human possibility, a theme which struck a chord with Academy Award nominee Andrew Garfield who plays Robin Cavendish. He explained: “Robin Cavendish fought for value of life. He fought to make life meaningful and not just survive it, but

to live a rich and connected life. “Out of such loss and suffering, they created such joy and that’s just an inspiration for all of us. “We all go through some version of that in our lives as we become adults, or even before we become adults in some tragic circumstances. “What I saw in their story was a template of how to live. How to live a life of meaning with the inevitable loss incorporated into one’s life. To laugh at the universe, to laugh at the cosmic joke, the absurdity of the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune which befall all of us in some ways. “They managed to do it with such grace and elegance and with a two fingers to the establishment, but also to a universe which would give Robin such a fate.”


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Helping to drive out polio

HE Purple4Polio Rotary Grand Tour is getting into gear with drivers, and their quirky automobiles, preparing to hit the roads to raise Rotary awareness and funds for End Polio Now, Rotary’s campaign to eradicate the disease. Bangers, classics, motorbikes and even motorhomes will start their engines in May 2018 when the tour begins Monday, May 21st with the chequered flag falling on Thursday, May 24th in Yorkshire at an end of tour party. Sitting at the wheel of an 18-yearold silver Volkswagen Beetle, which is in surprisingly good condition and bedecked in Purple4Polio logos, will be the driver behind the event, Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland President Denis Spiller. He explained: “The idea came from a club speaker who had completed something similar across Europe and I thought what a fantastic way to support our cause and increase Rotary awareness across Great Britain and Ireland. “The cars will be very eye-catching and that is bound to draw the attention of the public who will want to know more about Rotary. 6 // ROTARY

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“The cars will be very eyecatching and that is bound to draw the attention of the public who will want to know more about Rotary. ” “Imagine being part of the mighty push which brings the end of polio closer to its finish line. The grand tour maximizes the potential fundraising for this specific cause and, thanks to the Bill and Melinda Gates promise, £100K can be turned into £300K. “The event is sparking interest amongst our clubs. I have heard that someone wants to enter with a purple ambulance. There are hundreds of Rotarians out there with classic cars in their garages which could do with a good run and this is a perfect opportunity.” This is a tour with a twist and that is not just the roads involved. Teams are plotting their own route point to point around the districts, arranging their own accommodation and their journey begins in their home district

which removes any queueing at a start line. It is not a race of any kind. Once fully registered, teams will be sent a log-book to record their trip, a sponsor form and two large car stickers. The rest of the decoration is up to them. Check and rest points will be set up in each district to provide a break and attract the public. Non-drivers are not being left out. Join the adventure from your armchair by following the hashtag #RotaryGrandTour on Twitter and Facebook where photos and stories will be uploaded. End Polio Now has been active since the 1980s and has succeeded in saving millions of children from the disfiguring and, at times, deadly disease. This concerted effort has the support of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control. Thanks to the dedication of Rotarians administering the vaccine and raising funds for research, polio will soon be consigned to history.

Be part of the journey to end polio by registering at: and search for Grand Tour.

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Champion of Change Awards


It’s all just

champion! Do you know of a community champion who is hiding their light under a bushel? Then give them the recognition they deserve for next year’s Champion of Change and Community Champions’ awards. Library image


EING a Champion of Change opens up a whole new world of opportunity to Rotarians on a mission and it could happen

to you. Mike Yates, a member of the Cheshire-based New Mills, Marple and District Rotary Club, discovered this four years ago when he hit his first purple patch through his work with polio. He was one of the original group of Rotarians to receive the award from the then Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, at a glittering event in London. Mike was honoured for his efforts in organising and taking part in polio immunisation days for children under five in India. That recognition has spurred him on and, four years later like a true champion, he is still leading the charge to help keep India polio-free. He has organised 23 groups involving 1,267 individuals from many countries. 8 // ROTARY

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“He was one of the original group of Rotarians to receive the award from the then Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, at a glittering event in London.” He and his volunteers’ efforts will be recognised once again in April 2018 thanks, this time, to the Hazel Grove Constituency MP, William Wragg. A celebration reception is planned at the House of Commons which will serve as an opportunity to thank invited volunteers from all over the world. Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland is once again on the look-out for 12 Rotarian unsung heroes who go the extra mile with service projects in the community, both at home and abroad.

You could be sitting next to one such person in your club or know of one in your district. If so, let us know. Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland also want Rotarians to nominate eight non-Rotarians who, as individuals or as a part of other non-profit organisations, are making a difference in their community. They will be honoured as Community Champions. This is your opportunity to become involved in the Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland major awards night which in 2018 will take place in the City Hall in Cardiff, to recognise 100 years of Rotary in Wales. Give your nominations to your assistant governor or district governor but hurry, you only have until December 20th as the process takes a few weeks. Better still, do it today. The completed and approved nominations must be with the Rotary Support Centre by January 17th.

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Letters to the Editor A humbling experience AS a new Rotarian, having now experienced my first few meetings, I have found myself inspired and enthused by the energy and spirit of my new-found colleagues. The compassion, endeavour and altruism with which they work has been quite humbling, putting me in mind of the very thinking that I have been advocating for the past 18 months through my work with the United Nations 'Sustainable Development Goals'. Rotary, by the very ethos of its creation, inherently adheres and promotes the sustainable development objectives set by the United Nations. What the UN goals essentially ask us to do is ‘care’, and that is precisely the message that I have found to define Rotary. This message was effectively demonstrated to me by fellow Rotarian, Les Wilson, at my District 1180 meeting through only three words - service above self. I like that. I like it a lot. This simple axiom resonates with my work, as well as with my philosophy and ethics. It is this very affirmation that our planet, our environment, our animals and indeed ourselves depend upon, for it shall only be through our ability and capacity to show that we care, that future generations will have an ability to measure us by. To honour and protect our planet has to be the core value that represents our humanity. Our service is indebted to our future. So, it is with an optimistic and determined resolve that I shall seek to play my part as a Rotarian, contributing to a programme of commitment, service and compassion. Dave Benbow Rotary Club of Liverpool St Vincent’s

At what cost ? I AM responding to your request for comments re the cost of Rotary. I will say at the outset that my experience does not mirror yours. I am the Immediate Past President of Formby Squirrels which is a very new club. I attended our District Conference at which I was informed that Rotary International had decided to increase its 10 // ROTARY

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fees by $3 a year for the foreseeable future. The same year, RIBI increased the fees from £52 to £60 due, I understand, to keep the income level up in the face of presumed loss of membership. With district fees on top, that brought the cost to between £77 and £87. The increase in fees by RIBI, which is a high percentage increase, with no concomitant reduction in overhead cost did not sit well with members. My club does not charge any additional membership costs as an overhead. We have had some anecdotal evidence of membership loss driven in part by the cost of Rotary, even in our limited existence. What to my mind is more important about the cost of Rotary is the impediment it poses in attracting new members. People do baulk when trying to attract them when you mention the cost, especially when you have to be honest and say that the membership fees are not the end of incidental costs. We particularly find that the fee issue hits hardest on prospective members in the 30 to 50-year age bracket, which is the age group we really want to attract. This group usually are under the most financial strain and paying out large tranches of money, such as Rotary fees in two lots, also does not help. I wonder whether RIBI could assist in this aspect by making monthly direct debits an option for paying fees. Dave Bosworth Rotary Club of Formby Squirrels Editor’s note: There is nothing stopping clubs arranging monthly direct debit payments by their members. It is not something RIBI can do for them.

Leading the way ‘’HOW to increase membership’’ has been a challenge to Rotary for several years and I was most intrigued, whilst dipping into my copy of 2016/17 RIBI directory (purchased at RIBI 2017 Conference in Manchester back in April), to discover the listing of ‘Aberdeen clubs in District 1010 which reveals their total of 228 members out of the district total of 2,828 members. That has prompted my letter to you from District 1285 (listed total 1,970 members) to enquire about their magic

formula and suggest an article in your excellent Rotary publication to direct enthusiastic Rotarians along their path! George Ayres Rotary Club of Hazel Grove

It's all in the detail I WAS staggered when I glanced at the Welsh Rotary Centenary article on page 30, entitled ‘Hitting a century’. For me this should have been a wonderful opportunity to record such a momentous occasion, only to be marred by a glaring inaccuracy. How on earth could this have happened? The second paragraph leads with The Band of the Royal Welsh Guards, and the picture caption states the same thing. There is no such regiment as the Royal Welsh Guards. As an ex-member of The Welsh Guards, my hackles are raised. The picture shown is that of ‘The Royal Welsh’. The Royal Regiment of Wales and The Royal Welch Fusiliers (Welch is the correct spelling), were amalgamated in 2006 to form ‘The Royal Welsh’. For their ceremonial dress, they have buttons evenly spaced down the front of their red tunics, and the Bandmaster wears a white plume on the right side of his Bearskin. The picture shown and incorrectly captioned is definitely that of The Royal Welsh. The Welsh Guards, are the Fifth Regiment of Foot Guards in the Household Division. They wear two sets of five buttons on their red ceremonial tunics, and they wear a white/green/white plume on the left side of their Bearskins. Sorry to be so picky, but knowing you are particular about accuracy in everything you do, I thought perhaps you might wish to raise this issue with the particular Welsh District responsible for the faux pas. In truth I am not too fussed. However, I thought perhaps you should be warned in case many ex-Welsh Guards Rotarians get a bit upset! Glyndwr (Glyn) Davies, Chatham, Kent, UK.

A bad taste all round I VERY much regret to say that I found the tone of your editor's letter in the October/ November edition to be unnecessarily

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Get in touch We welcome your letters on any subject to do with Rotary. Submissions should not be more than 150 words long. Please include your name and address. Email: or write to: Rotary magazine, Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland, Kinwarton Road, Alcester, Warwickshire B49 6PB. The comments made on this page do not necessarily represent the views of Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland and Rotarians.

pointed in tone and inappropriate in content. And I want to say right away that I agree entirely with the new magazine arrangements to be introduced next year. If it was the case that the fellow Rotarian who emailed you had actually impacted adversely the roll-out of the new arrangements next year then I could have understood your sense of frustration. But I very much doubt that he did. The references to Victor Meldrew, Chelsea Pensioners, beach towels and Luddites seemed to me to be all quite unnecessary and frankly represented a petulant and public outburst. What you have succeeded in doing is to leave a sour taste by your clumsy reaction to a view expressed by a fellow Rotarian. Instead, you might usefully have highlighted some other aspect of Rotary business, containing a measured degree of challenge if appropriate. A pity in my view. Stuart Fraser Chipping Sodbury Rotary Club

Let's blow our own trumpet THE article by Amanda Watkin in the October issue of Rotary magazine admits that our magazine is at the heart of our communication and for £5 can be delivered to existing members' doors - great value, I'm sure. What concerns me is that this venture is preaching to the converted. I, as a relatively new member of a small club, have delivered spare magazines to various outlets within our area. I realise that other clubs may do the same, thus avoiding landfill accusations. I deliver spare or returned magazines to places such as libraries, doctors' surgeries, sports centres, football clubs, local hotels, etc. It is too early to know what effect this is having but at least it is giving the local community the opportunity to see and read about the kind of work that this great organisation is doing. Let's get out there and blow our own trumpet and possibly entice new young members to join us. We still need hard copy magazines to be able to do this. P.S. A little humour in the excellent Rotary magazine would not go amiss.

Brian Jenkins Saundersfoot Rotary Club Editor’s note: Great idea, we will look at these options going forward…

Right place, right time EARLIER this year, two friends and myself decided to do a 24 hour sleep-out for the homeless charity ‘Changing Lives’. There is nothing new in this, but as the day wore on we were joined in the Market Place at Morpeth by two very different types of people; one a gentleman of about 60 and a lady of about 35 to 40 years-old. We took some sandwiches and pizza to the gentleman, who told us that he had been homeless for 11 years and that was his choice. He was a very polite, well-spoken gentleman. The lady called Nicola, who had sat quietly beside the man, told us she was homeless having run away from an abusive partner. She had been sleeping rough in Morpeth for five nights. She was not from the town, but had got a lift from a lorry driver who had dropped her off. We did our best by giving her food and blankets. We then met Changing Lives’ fundraiser, Jill Watkin, who could not believe that in a middle class place like Morpeth we had homeless people. She spent four hours on the phone trying to find somewhere for Nicola to stay, but initially that was to no avail. Nicola had to spend two nights behind the library before Jill got her accommodation in a hostel which catered for homeless, abused women. We were so delighted. The good news is that Nicola is now doing well, receiving counselling for her low esteem and confidence and has been reunited with her daughter and granddaughter. We raised a lot of money on our sleepout, but felt that what we had done was meant to be for Nicola. She came to us for a reason, all the reasons why in Rotary we work in the community. Rhona Dunn, Morpeth Rotary Club

Subscribe to Rotary - page 12

Star Letter

£20 book token winner I WISH Denis Spiller a successful and enjoyable tenure of office. The goals are high, and with the best of intentions, I think. So, we are to proceed in the “modern way”. We seem to be disposing of our standards which have held us in high regard with the general public since our inception. Paul Harris must be turning in his grave, but perhaps not? He also was forward-thinking, but I do not think he would approve of all the ideas that seem to be proposed. To remove our principles which are the basis of Rotary, to satisfy a modernistic approach, seems wrong to me. Sure, young people these days seem to be happy to take on community work, providing it is part of their company policy, i.e. it is done in company time and they get paid for it. This is a false principle as it does not come freely and from the heart. I recognise that many young people today are light years ahead of our old ways and respect them for it. I also accept that they have a fantastic opportunity to advance Rotary, but will they? We will see. New flexibility rules should not mean capitulation to pleasing yourself and doing whatever you like. What would be the point of having a club? Would they pay membership fees, would they receive a magazine. Not everyone is in favour of Twitter, Facebook or electronic devices. Taking away formality creates a lackadaisical atmosphere where everyone is right and no-one can be wrong. This does not promote good decisions. This is not a basis for trust and confidence, either within the club, or with its associates. Yes, we must embrace new technology, I accept that, but it cannot mean that we should abandon all the principles that formed Rotary in the first place. Terry Fisher, Hoddesdon Rotary Club ROTARY // 11

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Receive 6 issues of Rotary magazine for just £5 When you subscribe. That's less than £1 each copy! From the next issue your Rotary magazine will no longer be distributed to clubs. You will still be able to access this great magazine online, but will need to subscribe to receive the printed edition delivered to your door.



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Ian and Juliet Riseley relaxing on their deck

Providing a focus for peace Rotary President Ian Riseley explains why he’s looking forward to hosting the Presidential Peace Building Conference in Coventry this February.


CHANCE conversation with a scientist at home in Australia was the persuading voice for Rotary President, Ian Riseley, to launch his Presidential Peace Building Conferences. Coventry will be hosting the second of the global Peace Building Conferences on Saturday, February 24th at the Ricoh Arena. The RI President will be joined by the Lord Mayor of Coventry, as well as The Rotary Foundation Vice Chairman Ken Schuppert, and Rotary International Director, Brian Stoyel, among the speakers. Ian explained that he regards peace as being important in a Rotary context, and he wanted to use these series of conferences to examine how Rotary’s five areas of focus were entwined with peace. “I was talking to a scientist in Canberra where we were talking about polio,” he told Rotary magazine “I told him how I believe all these Rotary areas of focus relate to peace. He said absolutely, and pointed out that we don’t talk enough about it because everything has an impact on peace. “So with these conferences, the five areas of focus are being talked about how they relate to peace and the sixth one, environmental sustainability is important to

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me, so I wanted to talk about that as well.” By focusing on the areas where Rotary does its most significant work, the series seeks to: • Elevate Rotary’s status as a global leader in each area of focus • Demonstrate The Rotary Foundation’s impact on our causes • Educate and inspire participants to increase their Rotary service • Provide an opportunity for members and non-members to explore project partnerships Other conferences are taking place in Vancouver (environmental sustainability), Beirut (water and sanitation), Sydney (economic and community development), Taranto, Italy (maternal and child health), and Chicago (basic education and literacy). Coventry’s focus will be disease prevention, treatment and peace. Ian said he was looking forward to the Coventry conference. “Put Lady Godiva to one side, but when you look at the history of Coventry, notably the Second World War, it is one of those places which jumps off the page at you,” he added.

“These conferences are talking to people outside of Rotary, as well as Rotarians, so I am hoping, that the world will understand that Rotary cares for these areas of activity, in particular. “I like the fact we have six areas of focus. In the past we have tried to be all things to all people, the areas of focus have narrowed our focus of our major activity. “This is a chance to tell the world about our activities, in particular our areas of focus. We talk to ourselves a lot, we don’t talk to people outside anywhere near enough, so I hope people outside of Rotary will come along to these conferences. “The outside in itself is a pejorative – it smacks of us and them - and we have got to get over that to the stage where people know that Rotary is an organisation which, dare I say it, does make a difference in all sorts of ways. “The world is relatively volatile and turbulent. I think Rotary is almost uniquely placed to make a difference in peace.”

For more information visit:

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UK government and Rotary DAVE KING

Standing tall

in the fight against polio

Earlier this year, the UK government backed Rotary's polio campaign by giving £100 million. Shortly before her departure as Secretary of State for International Development, Priti Patel discussed the global challenges which lie ahead


OUTH Sudan, Yemen, north-east Nigeria and Somalia – countries in turmoil, weighed down by conflict, famine and poverty. According to Priti Patel, the world is currently facing a series of humanitarian crises which, when taken together, are on a scale never witnessed before. And that’s why, according to the former Secretary of State for International Development, the United Kingdom needs to be taking a lead. “There are no words which can describe the horrors we are witnessing in terms of famine and drought, but also persecution,” she explained while in post. “Of course, many of those problems are man-made. I have been to South Sudan where I have seen people persecuted, people who have been left destitute. We don’t turn our backs on those countries and those individuals who need a voice.” It’s why, when pushed on the controversial 2015 decision for the UK to commit 0.7% of its Gross Domestic Product on foreign aid at a time of austerity when other Whitehall departments were having their budgets slashed, Priti Patel doesn’t bat an eyelid. Opponents argue how can the UK justify such a commitment when that cash 16 // ROTARY

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“Health is a very good example where we are spending money to not only save lives but change lives, and achieving that domestically. Diseases know no boundaries or borders, whether it is polio, Ebola or the Zika virus. “We have been at the forefront of tackling those diseases, as well as looking at the remedies. Look at money we have spent on innovation and research in British universities which, by the way, has created jobs in the UK. “When it comes to our aid spending,


MP Priti Patel

could be spent on key areas at home such as health and education? However, Priti Patel points out that because of this commitment, other countries have now stepped up to the plate. “Instead of being vilified, it is a Conservative government which deserves credit for this,” she insisted. “The point about 0.7% is how you spend it and how you leverage it in terms of your own domestic security, along with domestic and international interests.

A woman marks a house to indicate the occupants have been vaccinated against polio

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“We need to go on that extra mile of the journey towards polio eradication,” added Priti Patel. “People’s life chances, their life expectancy to get themselves out of poverty are hindered by these diseases. “So I think we should stand tall, not just for the commitment that we have made of £100 million to eradicate polio, but actually it is the UK, thanks to the generosity of British taxpayers, which has enabled this. “By putting in the money now, by working collectively with Rotary, Bill Gates, with the big partners who have come together to end polio now, we can say to other countries and governments to step up now. “We should be very mindful of the countries we are working in: Nigeria; Afghanistan; and Pakistan where there have been very significant cultural barriers to immunisation. This is something we all have to collectively

tackle and be responsible for. “And when there have been attacks on polio workers, we need to call out this type of behaviour which needs to change to ensure immunisation can take place so polio workers can continue saving lives and make a big difference.” As for the future, Priti Patel says she wants the Government to work closely with Rotary in areas such as poverty alleviation, slavery, trafficking, as well as women and economic empowerment. “Together, we need to end some of the appalling things, which quite frankly, are taking place in the 21st century and which should have been dealt with a long time ago. “I think working with Rotary to show the UK is leading the world in these areas, that we can be a force for good and strong leaders in all of these areas, is exactly where we should be coming together.” l


no-one can accuse this Government of just spending money. I have been mindful of stamping out the inefficiencies of spending. It is taxpayers’ money. And you will not find a stronger advocate and champion of the UK taxpayer than me.” Priti Patel revealed she was delighted the government committed £100 million of her budget this summer in the fight against polio. Rotary’s campaigning heavily influenced her thinking towards making the financial commitment. “Rotary played a big part in the decision to give that money,” she explained. “Rotary has a great footprint, not just locally, but internationally for all the good work it is doing. Through that awarenessraising, it has made a very big difference. But for the election, we would have made this announcement much earlier.” Polio, she said, is just one of many of the ‘medieval’ diseases which need to be tackled and eradicated in the 21st century.

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A defib saved my life

A helping hand


HEN a Musselburgh shop owner raised the funds for a life-saving defibrillator, he hoped he’d never have

to use it. But when an elderly man dropped to the ground just metres from his shop, quick-thinking Neil Wilson was able to bring him back from the brink of death with the heart-starting device for which he had raised the cash. Neil, President of the Rotary Club of Musselburgh, was in Gordons Chemist a few hundred metres from his own shop when 85-year-old John Brown collapsed. As dispensary assistant Fiona Dornan began CPR, Neil dashed to grab the automated external defibrillator (AED) from the wall outside his shop and within minutes the machine had administered a heart-starting shock that paramedics later said had saved Mr Brown’s life. “The adrenaline kicked in,” Neil explained. “I have dealt with first aid situations before and passionately fundraised for the AED but since it was installed a year ago, have never used it. “It is hard to put into words what was going through my head at the time. "I have dealt with people who have split their head, broken their hip, but there has always been a sign of life. But there was none with Neil and for that machine to work its magic alongside the CPR is just amazing. “The paramedics said we gave John the best chance of surviving and there was nothing more we could have done.”

Fiona said it was a terrifying moment when the OAP collapsed during her shift, but her natural instinct kicked in. “The patient came in for a routine prescription,” she explained. “He passed out and I was on the phone to 999. I was alarmed and it was very scary but your instincts just take over to preserve someone’s life.

“The paramedics said we gave John the best chance of surviving and there was nothing more we could have done.” “I was completely overwhelmed but the main thing is the patient is recovering well. "Without Neil and the defibrillator I don’t know what the outcome would have been.” Mr Brown’s family gave their heartfelt thanks in a Facebook message with John’s great niece Rosenna Elton saying: “We can’t thank you all enough for your incredible actions yesterday. Thank you for giving my great uncle the time of day. And to the lady in the chemist. Both of you have undoubtedly saved his life. “My family really appreciate this incredible act of generosity you all have shown. Thank you again.” Neil said the incident was a shock the town needed to come together and raise money to buy more external defibs. “There are only two external defibs in Musselburgh and with a population of 20,000 we could quickly raise enough for more," he added. The Rotary Club of Musselburgh initially raised the £1,500 for the AED unit outside Wilson’s greengrocers and is now focussing its efforts on raising more.

©Greg Macvean

Neil Wilson and Fiona Dornan who used the defibrillator outside Neil's grocery shop

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N many ways, The Rotary Foundation is an invisible presence in our clubs. Most of what we do in our clubs and our districts, on a weekly basis, we do without the active involvement of the Foundation. But our Foundation is invisible in our clubs in the same way the foundation of a building is invisible when you’re in it: just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not holding you up. The Foundation that enabled Rotary to take on polio is, in many ways, the foundation upon which our Rotary service is built. For 100 years, since it came into existence with a first donation of $26.50, the Foundation has supported and strengthened our service, enabled our ambitions, and allowed us to be the organisation that we are. Because of the Foundation, Rotarians know that if we have the ambition and put in the work, very little is truly beyond us. It is an incredibly effective model that we have here in Rotary, one that no other organisation can match. We are completely local and completely global: we have local skills, connections, and knowledge in over 35,000 clubs, in nearly every country of the world. We have a deserved reputation for transparency, effectiveness, and good business practices, and because we are highly skilled professionals as well as volunteers, we achieve a level of efficiency that very few other organisations can approach. To put it simply, a dollar given to The Rotary Foundation has a great deal more muscle than a dollar given to most charities. If you want to spend a dollar on Doing Good in the World, you can’t do better than to spend it with the Foundation. That is not just me speaking out of pride; it is verifiably true and is reflected in our rankings by independent organisations. In the Foundation’s centennial year, Rotarians surpassed our goal of raising $300 million. If you were part of that achievement, you have been part of something tremendous. Somewhere in the world, someplace you have probably never been, people you may never meet will lead better lives because of you.

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Pan-American Adventure DAVE KING

Life in the fast lane Meet Rotarian Nigel Tailyour and wife Sharyn who completed an amazing 20,000-mile motorbike journey from Argentina to Alaska along the Pan-American Highway.


MSWORTH is a picturesque village nestling on the Hampshire/Sussex border. With Chichester Harbour lapping at its shores, it's a popular place for boaties and those seeking a quiet, relaxing life. Not so Nigel and Sharyn Tailyour, whose home looks out on a pontoon lined with yachts. Now in their sixties, this adventurous couple definitely like living life in the fast lane. Nigel, 68, along with wife Sharyn, 66, have just completed the latest leg of an epic road trip - a 20,000-mile motorbike journey along the Pan-American Highway from Argentina to Alaska. The six-month scramble took in nine countries along the world's longest 'motorable' road.

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"It was our biggest challenge so far, but we loved it," explained Nigel, who is a member of Havant Rotary Club. "People thought we were crazy pensioners, but it was an amazing experience witnessing so much contrast in landscape, culture and the people we met." When it comes to mad-cap motorbike escapades, Nigel and Sharyn have got form. They've biked to Nordkapp in northern Norway, travelling the furthest north you can go without needing a visa. Merzouga, a small Moroccan town in the Sahara Desert near the Algerian border, was their destination when the Hampshire bikers tried to repeat the feat in a southerly direction, and the Ukrainian town of Chernobyl was the end-point of their westward non-visa challenge. To complete the set, in 2014 Nigel and Sharyn completed a gruelling 18,000-

mile round the world motorbike trip via Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Kazakhstan, Korea, Canada and then America. "Why do we do it?" asked Sharyn. "For starters it's fantastic fun and it's a chance to travel the world and meet other people. “You hear about so much horrible stuff going on in parts of the world where we've travelled, but when you get to these countries, you find that people all over the world have similar dreams and aspirations, doing their best for their families." For the Pan-American trip, Nigel and Sharyn travelled aboard a formidable BMW R1200 GS Adventure, which they bought from an Austrian biker and which already had 81,000 miles on the clock. They picked it up in the Brazilian city of Recife before driving 4,000 miles south to Ushuaia in Argentina, the southernmost city in the world and the starting point of

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their journey last March. "At that time of the year it's autumn in Ushuaia, so we had to be out of there before April when the snow arrives," explained Sharyn. "We also knew we had to reach Alaska by October for exactly the same reason." For their epic journey they carried a tent, two sleeping bags, airbeds, and a cooking stove. They were restricted to two sets of clothes, a swimming costume and a fleece. It was the tightest of packing for the pannier boxes to cope for a variety of conditions from snow to 47 degree desert heat. What about luxuries? "I packed lipstick and mascara, and for Nigel it was quality chocolate," added Sharyn. "Or maybe a whisky!" They carried with them a Sat Nav as well as a mobile phone to keep in touch with news from home. Theirs was a journey of enormous contrast and an ever-changing landscape taking in Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia, crossing the Andes and into the Atacama desert. From Panama City, the route took them through Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, San Salvador and Mexico, before withering in the Arizona heat, easing through California and into Canada via British Colombia and the

Yukon before finishing the journey in the Alaskan town of Haines in July. In South America, Nigel and Sharyn stayed in hostels, but opted to camp once they had reached America. The couple used the trip to highlight the Samaritans, for whom Nigel serves as a volunteer in Portsmouth. They managed to visit a couple of Rotary clubs, including the Rotary Club of Ushuaia, who begin their meetings by singing the national anthem and then hosting three flags on poles the size of a wine bottle representing Argentina, Ushuaia and Rotary. And they called in on two clubs in San Clemente, California. "We tried to hitch up with the International Fellowship of Motorcycling Rotarians," said Nigel. "They had a big meeting near the border with Uruguay, but the timing didn't work for us. We would have loved to have visited more clubs."

Despite the scale of the trip, the bike suffered just one breakdown in Peru, which required a replacement drive-shaft, and they incurred just one $10 speeding ticket in Nicaragua! "We met some fabulous people who showed us wonderful hospitality," said Sharyn. "We didn't feel threatened or scared. In Central America, there are a lot of armed guards and checkpoints which tested my comfort zones, but you just have to be careful and not stray off the main routes." Nigel added: "The brilliant thing about being on a bike is that people want to talk to you. The hospitality of people was an abiding memory, in direct proportion to their wealth - the less they have the more they welcomed you. "The one thing we learnt is that even at our age we are quite resilient. Always remember that nothing is too bad which can't be overcome." l

What about luxuries? “I packed lipstick and mascara, and for Nigel it was quality chocolate.�

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Rotary GBI President



OUR months of this Rotary year in already and we are at the peak of conference season. Penny and I have attended seven so far and I must say a public thank you to all districts and Rotarians for such warm welcomes and encouraging feedback. My message has been quite direct, but received with recognition of our membership challenge and most encouragingly, fantastic enthusiasm for the future and generation of new Rotary opportunities to attract our 30 to early retired into our numbers. My challenge to districts was to create 250 new club opportunities by June 2018 through satellites, Rotaract and new clubs and I am so pleased to tell you that your district governors are reporting we are 50% there already. I know that when we launch nationally in January, we shall have a marvellous story to tell. This year we have seen the biggest Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland awareness campaign ever through World Polio Day on October 24th. Clubs have been on the streets, illuminating buildings and running any number of events. It started for me in District 1240

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with a Swing Band concert in a packed 400-seater theatre with as many general public attending as Rotarians. I was able to tell them all about the significance of Purple4Polio and the eradication programme. On October 23rd we were privileged to attend the London charity showing of Breathe, the wonderful film about Robin Cavendish MBE, a total paralysis victim of Polio and his fight to improve the lives of thousands of similar cases. An extremely moving yet happy film. Please watch it, and you will for certain understand the reason why we have worked so hard for over 30 years to save millions from a similar fate. Finally, we had a long but fantastic day at the London Olympic Park where Rotarians and Polio Ambassadors including Julia Roberts, a QVC presenter and broadcaster, Konnie Huq of the BBC and of course Ade Adepitan MBE, helped to plant 50,000 crocus corms. The Purple4Polio Racing Caterham

7 of Mark Tredwin, and my Banger Rally Beetle were on display right in front of the Olympic Stadium where some of us, including my daughter Alice with bright purple hair, were painting purple pinkies on anyone we could stop to talk to. I must thank Immediate Past President Eve Conway, Jannine Birtwistle, our Polio Champion, and the Support Centre team for making it all happen. Please ensure you share your World Polio day successes too. The major part of our membership generation plan is public awareness. We must let the public know that we are the organisation to join, for community service, personal networking and for a great fun filled social life. The Purple4Polio Rotary Grand Tour in May 2018 is just the way to do this. We have received over 60 enquiries for vehicle entries already and we are now open for registrations. Visit the website and search for Grand Tour. Keep Making a Difference and enjoying your Rotary. l

Ade Adepitan, Koni Huq and Julia Roberts were among some of the volunteers who took part in planting crocus corms at the Olympic Park in London

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Peace Award


A Jean Best speaking at the United Nations


Best for Peace

EAN BEST was on holiday in Greece with her husband Keith when she received the email, and was gobsmacked. “I didn’t believe it,” she said. The former headteacher had just been told that she was one of six people who would be honoured in Geneva as Rotary’s People of Action: Champions of Peace. So in November, as part of Rotary Day at the United Nations, Jean received the prestigious award at the Palais des Nations from Rotary President, Ian Riseley. “Peace is much more than the absence of violence,” he said, noting how the world’s conversation about peace is shifting to positive, achievable and tangible measures of human wellbeing and progress. For Jean, a member of the Rotary Club of Kirkcudbright in Dumfries and Galloway, the award is recognition of the Peace Project which she founded. This is a skill-based training scheme which teaches youngsters in 10 countries how to resolve conflict within themselves they then go on to promote peace to others in their schools and communities. “It is an amazing feeling to have been put forward for this award,” added Jean. “It is a fantastic achievement for Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland, as well as my District 1020, showing Rotary just what we are doing and how it is getting results.” Central to the Peace Project initiative is the creation of peace advocates, as Jean and her team of Rotary trainers work in

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schools with groups of teenagers on a six-step programme to control conflict and empower success. They then become mentors to work with other youngsters in their communities. “When we think of conflict we think of guns and tanks,” explained Jean. “But we are talking about the 21st century where we are looking at conflict around what I do, what I wear, what I eat. “This is about giving youngsters those skills to make the right decisions – should I pick up that knife, should I strap a suicide belt around my waist, should I become radicalised?” There are other specialist programmes which focus on bullying, self-harming and suicide. Jean’s initiative has been welcomed by educators because it is a one-stop approach towards addressing conflict. So far, she has set up hubs in Scotland, Yorkshire and Norfolk, and has also been working further afield in Australia, Mexico and the USA. Shortly before travelling to Geneva, Jean spoke at the Rotary Ireland conference in Donaghadee to discuss expanding the programme to the Emerald Isle – both north and south of the border. She would like to see Peace Project training implemented as part of the Peace Fellows programme at all of the Rotary Peace Centres. She said: “This would give the Peace fellows an opportunity to take something back to their countries to start creating peace with their young people, at no cost to anyone.” l

FEW months ago, I raised the question, “What do the trustees do, anyway?” I reflected that a critical role of ours is to listen. This month, Rotary Foundation Month, I can happily report that you speak volumes – and that you are heard. The late RI President-elect Sam F. Owori said he saw in Rotarians “an incredible passion to make a difference” and wanted to “harness that enthusiasm and pride so that every project becomes the engine of peace and prosperity.” From your letters, reports, and wonderful stories, we know you share Sam’s vision of a world where Rotarians unite and take action to create sustainable change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves. Last year we saw an increase in the number of global and district grants initiated and another record high in Rotary Peace Fellowship applications. We also saw increased totals in overall giving, reflecting your passion for what we do as “People of Action.” A special thanks to Rotary’s club and district leaders for providing continuity in all our endeavours. Recognition as the World’s Outstanding Foundation by the Association of Fundraising Professionals at its international convention affirms the work you are helping make possible. AFP’s committee of judges cited Rotary’s comprehensive campaign to eradicate polio as a major factor in the Foundation’s selection. To benefactors, bequest society members, and all levels of major donors, thank you! You are building financial stability for the future. Our Endowment Fund continues to grow because of your belief in the Foundation and its continually evolving programs. We are well underway with our “Building TRF Endowment: 2025 by 2025” initiative – to achieve $2.025 billion in gifts and commitments by 2025. As one Rotarian to another, from my heart to yours, please accept my personal thanks for your unflagging work and many accomplishments over the years. Let us celebrate Rotary Foundation Month together! l

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Under the Mango Tree DAVE KING

Under the mango tree! How a small charity in Cheshire is helping children in a remote Kenyan village gain a better education to escape the cycle of poverty.


AMBE is a poor, rural area lying some 30 miles north of Mombasa, Kenya’s second largest city. “It is a subsistence farming area, slightly bush type area, fairly hilly, where you will see lots of small areas of crops being grown, with cattle and goats wandering about,” explained Gordon Atkinson. It was there that Gordon and wife Angela visited with their church from Northwich in Cheshire seven years ago, dropping in on a school which has become a big part of their lives. After the church group began to support Timboni School, Gordon and Angela made the decision in 2012 that if this support was to become sustainable then they needed to start up a charity. And that’s when Under The Mango Tree was born. “We used the name Under The Mango Tree because when the school began in 2000, it started with the children literally gathering under the mango tree,” explained Gordon. “The community had no buildings, no classrooms, nothing. “What we found in 2010 was a very humble school with a small number of classrooms. “We met some of the elders of the village, people who had not been to school, but who had the foresight to understand that education was the best chance these children had of breaking that relentless cycle of poverty.” What the couple saw was a community with very few resources, but a very determined understanding that education was a key to the future. One of the charity’s first tasks was to build a classroom, raising £8,000 in the process. Under The Mango Tree is continuing that work by providing critical resources such as pens, pencils, books, classrooms and safe toilets.

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They also pay the small wages of three nursery class teachers. "Without this funding, many nursery age children wouldn’t even have the chance of starting school. “What we found was that nursery teachers are not paid by the government,” added Gordon. “So the children would have to take a few pennies to cover the cost of their teaching and running the school. “The school’s way of working was if the children did not bring those pennies they would be sent home. So we decided that we, as a charity, would cover the cost of the whole nursery school so that is three teachers and 90 children and we cover those costs, which is very humbling – it is £4,000 a year.” Attendance rates for the nursery school immediately went up, as they did in the neighbouring primary school since the older children were not being kept at home to look after their siblings. What started with nursery children under a mango tree has grown with

Timboni School offering education to 300 children aged between four and 17-yearsold. Some walk to school as much as five miles each day, each way. The support is ongoing, however. Under The Mango Tree wants to raise more money to build another classroom and complete the infrastructure – something which will cost around £40,000 and several years to complete. Gordon is a past member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Northwich Vale Royal. Northwich Vale Royal adopted Under The Mango Tree as part of the club’s charity partner programme. Gordon said: “The club has been really supportive and has directly funded the purchase of new desks, mosquito nets and sponsored a district grant to refurbish the kitchen. "In addition to this financial assistance the general support and encouragement of club members for Gordon and Angela has been really

Children from the Timboni School are grateful for the charity's support

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The Under the Mango Tree project has transformed the lives of a rural community

“We used the name Under The Mango Tree because when the school began in 2000, it started with the children literally gathering under the mango tree,” explained Gordon. “The community had no buildings, no classrooms, nothing. valued”. There has been similar valued support from a number of other clubs in District 1180. In a separate, allied project, the Cheshire-based club has been working with the Rotary Club of Bahari-Mombasa to secure a Rotary global grant. The plan was to provide a solar power system in Kambe, with a dirty water catchment plant installed alongside. Unfortunately the Rotary Club of Bahari-Mombasa was unable to commit to fully supporting the project so this project is not going ahead at this time. There is much to admire about what this small scale project has achieved, with the school flourishing and growing to the point where it has become a focal point of the community in Kambe. Every day, women will come to the school bringing sticks for cooking, men will turn up to do jobs, and others will

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arrive just to have a chat. “Timboni School has become a focal point for the wider community as something they can be proud of,” suggested Gordon. “Personally, you feel pride in what you have done, frustration that you can’t do more quicker, but that is always almost the case with charity work. “It is lovely to visit the school. When you go they are so grateful for everything you have done and they want to thank you. "But what they don’t understand is this is not a one way street. “These are very engaging people and you gain a lot of friendship and fellowship. I don’t believe in the concept of altruism. "Few of us do some things without getting something back, and you do get a lot back when you go to Kenya.” l For more information visit:

ORLD Polio Day on October 24th attracted worldwide interest after the West End premiere of Breathe telling the life story of polio victim Robin Cavendish MBE. Role actor Andrew Garfield’s interview on the BBC’s ‘Andrew Marr Show’ went viral within minutes as praise was directed towards Rotary and governments for their commitment towards polio eradication. Our Institute in historical Riga, Latvia showed the internationality of Rotary fulfilling the expectations and preparation of the organising committee. The 2018 Institute will be held in Stratford-uponAvon in November – further details will be published on our website. Another date for your diary is February 24th in Coventry, and a unique experience inviting children and adults to Rotary’s Peacebuilding Conference with an emphasis on disease prevention, treatment and peace This will be an event featuring empowering speakers, with time for discussion and engagement. We hear of disaster every day, affecting communities, nations and individuals, always with heart-rending consequences which so many wish to address. The September Board meeting established a dedicated page on www.rotary. org where anyone can donate direct to the region of choice through local Rotary clubs and Rotarians. President Ian Riseley’s ‘What If?’ session at the next Board meeting will centre around regionalisation of Rotary and the format of our Council on Legislation with experiences gained from recent online Resolutions procedure. There was great pride for these islands at the United Nations Day in Geneva where Rotarian Jean Best (Rotary Peace Project curriculum for young people) and Peace Fellow Kiran Sirah (storytelling as a path to building peace and resolving or preventing conflicts) were recognised as Champions of Peace. This is an outstanding achievement for both recipients. Together with our family, Maxine and I wish you all a peaceful and joyous Season of Goodwill and we look forward to seeing you on our travels in 2018. l ROTARY // 27

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Club innovation

Living in the video age


Rodney Howell takes a look at eClubs and the Rotary eClub of East Anglia.

NNOVATION is the current buzzword as Rotary International loosens the rules for clubs to vary the structure and timing of their meetings to suit the changing needs of their members. When most Rotarians think of clubs which do things differently, often foremost in their minds is the Rotary eClub. But what is it they do and how do they handle their affairs? First formed 14 years ago as an experiment, there are now 300 eClubs world-wide - so I dropped in on the Rotary eClub of East Anglia, which was formed in 2014 and has had time to settle into an established working pattern. To attend one of their Wednesday evening meetings I was sent log-in details and instructions on downloading the necessary conference software. Joining a few minutes before the 7.30pm start, I found a stream of members popping in with a cheery greeting as their video image joined those already in place – a video camera and a headset are essential. About a third of the members eventually came online to listen to speaker 28 // ROTARY

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Harry McCann, a young Rotarian from Dublin who advises the Irish Government on engaging the young in science and technology. This shows a big feature of an eClub since they were able to get a high-profile speaker at zero cost. Speaking from a distant location, they were not asking for more than half an hour of that person’s time. Following the speaker’s departure and some light-hearted banter, the members drifted away and the meeting closed after about an hour. Members are mostly resident in East Anglia, but there are some based in the USA and the Middle and Far East. If the time zone is against you, all meetings are recorded and members can catch up at a more convenient time. Around 60% of the members have belonged to other clubs and eClub Secretary, Martin Brocklebank, sees retention as an important part of their function. He said: “We keep people within the Rotary family who would otherwise have been lost to the organisation”.

A club intranet (or ‘The Coffee Pot’ as it is known) provides a 24/7 chat space for members to discuss ideas or operate project groups. As for fund-raising and service, those members that can form a ‘cluster group’ can run events that require a joint physical presence but, otherwise, individuals arrange something for themselves or raise money via online sales. l


embers not confined to meeting •Mtime conversation ll members push activities on •Asocial media o costs other than £90 •Nannual subscription


•Little face-to-face contact an be time-consuming as •C‘doing Rotary’ is not confined to fixed times Not for those who dislike social media


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The new Rotary People of Action marketing materials are now available. Bring your club to life with these new, informative tools and help the world better understand who we are and what we do.

New Member Welcome Guide

People of Action Making a difference in our communities

New Member Welcome Guide The ideal resource to inspire and welcome new members taking their first steps on their Rotary journey. This stylish, 36 page, A4 book is the perfect introductory gift for your club’s newest recruits.

Prospective member booklet Capture prospective members with this 12 page, A5 booklet. The perfect introduction for those expressing an interest in joining Rotary and wanting some detailed, but concise information.

People of Action Making a difference in our communities

First contact booklet A pocket-sized booklet designed for first contact with people who may be hearing about Rotary for the first time. It’s a quick overview of who we are, what we do and how they can get involved.

Available in our shop now!

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Embracing apprenticeships


How Rotary is getting involved with a new Government initiative to promote work-place training.

OM ADAMS joined the Rotary Support Centre in December 2016 as an apprentice based in Club and District Support. One very busy year on and Tom has overcome his fear of phones, has a wealth of Rotary knowledge and helps to train others: “I am surprised at how many skills I have picked up, particularly with the support phone calls. "I used to put people on hold and ask my colleagues for help,” he said. “Now I don’t need to. If someone is frustrated or upset, I can calm them. "I recently spent over an hour helping someone with a database query, knowing that by helping them, they can help their club.” Tom completed an IT qualification at Stratford College, however, course delivery was impacted by high turn-over of lecturing staff and ever changing demands. This left him at a crossroads of either finding another study path or a job. Tom opted for the best of both worlds and researched apprenticeships. Luckily, the Rotary Support Centre was looking for an apprentice and, being in Tom’s home town of Alcester, proved to be the right choice: “I had often walked past the building but had never known what it was or what was going on in there,” he admitted. “When I was offered the interview I researched Rotary and discovered a remarkable

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organisation. We offer many different things here including audio conference calls and webinars. I didn’t expect it to be so advanced. “Charities focus on one area of support whereas The Rotary Foundation does so much for so many people. "From vaccinations to teaching a child in Africa, the scope is huge. People in communities understand what those communities need.” Despite being committed to IT and computers, one of Tom’s favourite moments was getting out of the office and meeting Rotarians face-to-face at the assemblies. He added: “I had been speaking to Rotarians for about three months on the phone and via email. Going out and putting faces to names was really great. It was enjoyable to see, first-hand, how Rotary uses our support. “I went to the Birmingham Regional Assembly and sat in a couple of sessions about social media and engaging with the public. Absorbing information and seeing how Rotarians use those tools was interesting.” His confidence and Rotary expertise has grown vastly, thanks to the support of his colleagues and Tom frequently returns the favour. “I had a training

Tom Adams

session for the database management system and then showed my colleagues. It was satisfying to give something back as they have given me so much. "I would not know what I know now if it hadn’t been for them.” Tom’s Rotary journey does not end here. Following a successful year, Tom is now joining Rotary as a permanent member of staff.

Apprenticeships THE apprenticeship combines practical training in a job with a course of study. A new Government levy came into effect earlier this year which is helping to fund more placements and increase access for young people into the world of work. Depending on the size and salary expenditure, a company can pay zero to 0.5% of payroll towards the levy. As a small business, Rotary is able to help start a career rather than provide high level mid-career development opportunities. Rotary can shape apprentices into meeting business needs whilst they complete their education. The initiative aligns well with Rotary’s commitment to offer young people opportunities to develop skills experientially, not just from theory books. The apprenticeship model builds confidence and helps the apprentice understand their high value in society through the workplace experience. This is really important to Rotary. ROTARY // 31

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Rotarian Alison Sutherland enjoying a coffee with one of the asylum seekers who she has helped

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Alison Sutherland

Seeking shelter Alison Sutherland from the Rotary Club of Cardiff Bay has been working with refugees and asylum seekers at the Cardiff Resettlement Centre as part of a programme which is helping to change lives and perceptions. Here is her story.


UITE often I drive along the stop-start Newport Road in Cardiff to visit my daughter. Two years ago, I remember noticing a fair-sized group of men sitting outside a fairly non-descript building. They were just chatting. When I got to work, I decided to find out what the building was used for and discovered it was a resettlement centre for refugees and asylum seekers. At the time I thought how sad it was to see these people just hanging around on a busy road-side, waiting for their cases to be researched and presented. I decided something needed to be done, so I met John Kerry, manager of the resettlement centre, known as Lynx House. He agreed that I could visit the centre every Sunday to deliver a programme to these people on behalf of Rotary District 1150. The programme is provided by PeaceJam, a US charity. It has the support and input from 13 Nobel Peace Laureates, including the Dalai Lama, the retired Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Oscar Arias, the former president of Costa Rica, and Iranian human rights lawyer, Shirin Ebadi. Wales is home to several thousand displaced people from Eritrea, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Uganda and other countries. When they arrive in the UK seeking asylum, they have to wait for up to a year for a hearing to determine if they qualify for official refugee status. We get up to 1,000 a month seeking refuge in Cardiff. Life during that time is extremely frustrating for them. They’re not allowed

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to work. Meanwhile, of course, they are very afraid. Their journeys have been horrendous. Because of the diverse backgrounds, nationalities and languages of the residents, it’s only possible to deliver a twohour chunk. Arabic is the major language, but often, the sessions are delivered in up to 10 languages with residents translating for each another. Sometimes, though, this is not always possible. The programme looks at the Laureates and touches on some of their stories, highlighting their lives and how they handled conflict in a peaceful way. It illustrates how the Laureates also had to flee their home countries in fear of their lives. And the programme deals with identity and difference, universal human rights, plus the culture and traditions of the UK, specifically Wales. The point of the programme is to equip these would-be citizens to integrate quickly into their new communities. It helps them to hold on to who they are while, at the same time, understanding and embracing the differences. We want to set them up for integration, rather than isolation. I take the attitude that we’re not looking at the root cause, we’re looking at the presenting issue. They’re here, and we need to help them. During the first year, 16 residents of Lynx joined Rotaract. They attended social events and volunteered alongside City of Cardiff Rotaract and Cardiff Bay Rotary. They shook tins, stewarded at the big firework event at Cardiff Castle, facepainted, dressed up as Christmas Elves in support of a local children’s hospice and

got involved with street cleaning and a blood pressure event. These residents did not always fall within the prescribed Rotaract age range, but it was not possible to offer them Rotary membership as they were not in possession of their citizenship, plus the costs were also prohibitive. However, the Rotaractors decided that they wanted to support and subsidise them. The background of the residents of Lynx varies considerably. There was an international human rights lawyer from Libya, a surgeon from Syria, a petro chemical engineer from Sudan and so on. What we are doing in Cardiff is making a small, but significant difference. The programme runs every other Sunday where I am assisted by two City of Cardiff Rotaractors, one of whom acts as an Arabic translator. Each of the recipients, especially those who joined Rotaract, have said that they felt this programme is vital. They said that no one else is giving them this information. They believe the friendship, welcome and respect which they received has helped them enormously. I’m passionate about justice. I’m passionate about being the voice of the voiceless. I think everyone is entitled to human rights and to opportunities and that some wrong turns don’t define the rest of their life. One of the residents told me how the programme had prevented him from committing suicide. And that, perhaps, is the most sobering thought of all. l

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It's Gone Viral


What is being watched, posted, liked, shared and tweeted around Rotary in the world of social media.

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram


Dozens of Rotarians and volunteers came together in the Olympic Park in London for Rotary GBI’s flagship World Polio Day event. We were joined by our #Purple4Polio ambassadors Ade Adepitan, Julia Roberts and Konnie Huq, and you can watch their interviews on our YouTube channel.

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram



Rotary International’s 5th World Polio Day livestream event was beamed around the world, with over 100,000 people tuning in live on Facebook. You can catch up on the stream on YouTube by visiting This year’s event came from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation HQ in Seattle and celebrated the unsung heroes in the fight to end polio. The countdown to history is underway.

Hollywood stars Claire Foy, Andrew Garfield and Andy Serkis all shared their support for Rotary and End Polio Now. As cast and crew of the film Breathe, the trio have brought to life the inspiring true story of Robin Cavendish, a polio survivor who was determined to live life the full. See their message on the @EndPolioNow Twitter page.

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram ©James Hitchings-Hales, Global Citizen

Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram



“Chaos” was how Paralympian and polio ambassador Ade Adepitan described it. But this wasn’t politicians going head to head in parliament, they were going head to head on the wheelchair basketball court in a special World Polio Day event. In a collaboration between Rotary and One Last Push, teams of politicians gave Ade’s sport a go to celebrate the UK’s commitment to ending polio. Check out the feisty highlights at Rotary International’s Facebook page.


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Rotary clubs across the world raised awareness for World Polio Day by bathing monuments and buildings in their communities in purple light, including this at Canterbury Cathedral, organised by Rotary South East. Search #EndPolio to see more club celebrations.

Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland


Rotary is grateful to a number of celebrity ambassadors and supporters helping us raise awareness of the fight to end polio. This year, wrestling star John Cena, Oscar-winning actress Viola Davis, musician Ziggy Marley and adventurer Bear Grylls all got behind the campaign.

Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland

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Michael Caruso

Why first impressions

are everything


MERICAN Rotarian Michael Caruso is proving a popular attraction on this side of the Atlantic. Six months after lighting up the Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland Conference in Manchester, Michael returned to these shores recently and was a guest speaker at the Rotary in London District Conference at Stratfordupon-Avon. “I never charge for Rotary talks, and Rotary soon found out!” joked Michael, who started off life

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as a salesman for a telecommunications company and now teaches presentation skills around the world. His first contact with Rotary was as a Group Study Exchange scholar 20 years ago. “To be on the GSE you had to be a non-Rotarian,” he explained. “I learnt more about Rotary in six months than most Rotarians would learn in six years.” Michael belongs to a Rotary club in Troy, Michigan, which is facing the same sort of membership challenges as other clubs around the world. They want to bring in younger people so that the club can remain relevant. “Rotary has been around for more than 100 years and every 20 years a new generation is exposed to Rotary,” explained Michael. “If you think about what has changed each generation, the one that has rocked us in the past 20 years has been technology and that has been a game changer. “Rotary was slow to come to the table with technology, but we are catching up now. It has been a slow sense of awareness.” In his presentations, Michael talks about the power of the first impression. Everyone needs to make first impressions, he said, but the reality in this fast-moving world is that we now have less time than ever to make those first impressions. Rotary is not immune to that principle. First impressions are everything, especially with recruiting, because if you don’t give a good first impression to a visitor, there will be no second visit. “Visitors who come to our clubs have

“A lot of times, because we are so proud of Rotary, we are overzealous and try to over sell it. I have a saying ‘show interest in others, then others will show interest in you'.”

first impressions when they walk in,” said Michael. “It’s what do they notice about the club and environment. Do people in the club say hello to the visitor? A lot of times they don’t. “We know who the visitor is, but often we are too busy chatting to fellow members. You could argue that sometimes clubs treat their members better than they do strangers. "So it is an easy shift. Incorporate the visitor into your conversation. “I tell Rotarians to ask questions which are related to our six areas of focus or our five values of service. Ask the visitor do you like to travel, because if they like to travel then later on international service is a good topic to bring up. Ask them if they have children or enjoy youth, because pretty soon you can talk to them about the subject. “A lot of times because we are so proud of Rotary we are over-zealous and try to over sell it. I have a saying ‘show interest in others, then others will show interest in you’. “You are not selling Rotary, you are answering questions from someone who is already interested in it. “Rotary is the best service organisation in the history of the world. Our job is to convey that value proposition so they stay with Rotary. “We can all communicate better. Communication is like driving – we like to think we are pretty good at it, but there are still plenty of dented cars on the road.” l

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Join us for the 2018 Rotary Conference in Torquay from 6th – 8th April. Conference is the place to be inspired by the programme of speakers, be educated at a series of workshops and be entertained by the functions and excursions on offer. There is so much to see, hear and learn. We are people of action and together, we connect to make a difference. Join Rotary on the Riviera for an unforgettable weekend. Register now at

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EN years ago Azad Choudhury, a member of the Rotary Club of Birmingham, returned to his home village in the Sylhet region of Bangladesh where he was inspired to set up a school. Without a school, the prospect of education for local children was almost nil, with opportunities to enrol in colleges of further and higher education denied to them. Supported by grants from the Rotary clubs of Birmingham and Solihull, together with grants and individual contributions, the Asian Azad Choudhury Academy was born, growing from a single structure to a

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six-storey building. “Six years of students have left the school, many with qualifications they would not otherwise have had,” explained Barry Badham, who serves as a trustee. “Today, the school has 650 pupils and 23 teachers. Currently, four pupils are studying at university for courses including medicine and business studies. “Perhaps, more importantly, the school has changed the culture surrounding education in the local area. Education was maybe for boys, but education for girls was unheard of. Today, 50 per cent of the pupils are girls.” The school receives no funding from

the Bangladesh Government. However, a recent £10,000 grant from the Rotary Club of Solihull will enable the school to tackle some building defects. Boxes of tools and sewing equipment from Trade Aid International are supporting the students’ skills education, backed up by funding from clubs and individuals in Rotary District 1060.

Any Rotary club looking to get involved should contact Rotarians Barry and Monika Badham at:

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HE Heritage Lottery Fund has awarded £9,900 of lottery funding for an innovative new project by the Rotary Club of Poole Bay which will add a new dimension to the interpretation of the Dorset town’s fascinating maritime history. “Pirates, Castaways and Codfish” is based on the lives of three influential figures who helped shape the town’s development in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. The project will tell their stories which includes privateering, piracy, smuggling, codfish, colonial settlement, merchant venturing, international trade, war and maritime security, all of which influenced the successful development of the port of Poole. This new initiative grew out of the original survey undertaken by Poole Bay Rotary to map and record the old alleys of Poole, in order to protect them for future generations. The club discovered possible links between three of the alleys and important historical figures in the town’s development: Admiral Sir Thomas Button; Captain John Bennett; and Governor Woodes Rogers. During the 11 months of this new project a variety of volunteers and local organisations will be playing their part. By the end of the project, the club will have produced new exhibition materials for Poole Museum, a heritage booklet and self-guided walk, CD/audio visual display together with a range of educational resources for schools. Don Nutt, project manager for Poole Bay Rotary, said: “There has already been tremendous interest from local groups to help us tell this story about the development of Poole as an international trading port. “We are looking forward to making this new information easily available in a variety of different forms through this project”.

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FTER spending 11 months in Kenya as a volunteer at a school for orphans, Tracey NealeFerreira decided to return to Africa, using up £30,000 of her life savings to set up a kindergarten educating orphans and disadvantaged children for free. The Roko 20 Academy opened in January 2014 in a rural area outside of Murang'a. Tracey is from West Wales and has forged close links with Rotary in the region. As a result, two schools in Narberth and Whitland have set up RotaKids where they are going to link up by video to the Roko 20 Academy on a regular basis. One of the early projects for both schools is Operation Flip Flop, brought about by jiggers. Jiggers, or chigoe fleas, are sand fleas found in Sub-Saharan climates that burrow into the skin and lay eggs. They cause swelling, itching and infection and, if left untreated, can lead to amputation and even death in the worst cases. “The start of term brought to our attention some particularly nasty cases of jigger infestation and the sight of them brought me to tears,” said Tracey. “I couldn't post the photos on Facebook as they really are horrific; their poor feet and toes are so disformed some can barely walk properly. “The reason they get jiggers is due to

poverty. The ones who are most affected do not have a bed to sleep on so will more than likely sleep in a sack on the ground where the fleas breed.” So the Ysgol Llys Hywel Whitland and Narberth Community Primary schools are helping to collect flip flops to send to Kenya. Mary Adams, a Past President of the Narbeth & Whitland Rotary Club explained: “Simply by having shoes on their feet, the children at the Roko 20 Academy can eliminate insects getting into their feet whilst sleeping on the ground and walking barefoot. “Sadly Tracey has to transport these shoes via her luggage, but if anyone has a secure way of getting items securely into Kenya she would appreciate it.”

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HAT has the world’s first automated cash dispensing machine and a public access defibrillator got in common? They’re both sited in the same Middlesex town, after the Rotary Club of Bush Hill Park donated an automatic public access resuscitation defibrillator. The defibrillator, which is located in Market Place, has been fully accredited by the London Ambulance Service. Dr Govind Mohan, President of the Bush Hill Park club presented the defibrillator, which coincided with a training programme for cardio pulmonary resuscitation which he hosted. “The more people who know how to do it, the more lives will be saved,” said Dr Mohan. “Hands-on effective CPR, along with the availability of the defibrillator, will most definitely save lives. This will be of immense benefit to the people of Enfield.” To mark the occasion, Dr Mohan gave CPR training at the launch to Mayor, Councillor Christine Hamilton, along with District Governor Mike Hodge, and Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland Vice President, Debbie Hodge.

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DAY CARE centre in South Africa which was the focus of a mammoth project involving two English Rotary clubs recently celebrated its first anniversary. Khayelitsha near Cape Town is reputed to be one of the fastest-growing townships in South Africa. It has a young, primarily black population, with fewer than seven per cent over the age of 50. The Rotary Clubs of Swadlincote in Derbyshire and Kirstenbosch, which nestles at the eastern foot of Table Mountain, are twinned. In early 1999, both clubs sponsored the design and construction of a children’s playground in Khayelitsha. The project was carried out on behalf of Ikamva Labantu, a private organisation devoted to helping large numbers of disadvantaged children living in the area, some of whom were orphans or affected by HIV/AIDS. The playground was completed and is now used daily. Then in 2014, because of great pressure on local resources, the trustees of the Khumbulani Centre, which lies adjacent to the playground, announced plans to create a day care centre for up to 200 children. The trustees found funding from a German foundation in Germany for the design and construction of the basic three

storey building, at a cost of two million Rand (£119,000). Kirstenbosch Rotary then joined forces with their partners in Swadlincote and the Rotary Club of Chichester Priory in West Sussex to help fund equipping the day care centre with a host of equipment including a fully-equipped computer suite. In addition, School Aid, located in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, agreed to supply desks and chairs which they shipped out to Cape Town free of charge. The total cost to Rotary was R350,000 (£120,000) thanks to the financial support from Swadlincote, Chichester Priory and Kirstenbosch Rotary clubs, along with District 9350. The centre was formally opened at a colourful ceremony by the Premier of the Western Cape, Ms Helen Zille, in October 2016.

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NEWS IN BRIEF MANX HOSPITALITY FOURTEEN students from Poland, Portugal, Spain, Macau, Croatia, Germany, the Netherlands and Romania visited the Isle of Man for the weekend as part of Rotary District 1285 Summer Camp 2017. The Rotary Club of Rushen & Western Mann hosted the students who enjoyed an educational visit to Castletown with a sitting of Tynwald in the Old House of Keys.

CANAL BOAT FUN THE Rotary Club of Folkestone has donated funds to help fund a canal boat holiday for members of the Activities, Respite, Rehabilitation, Care Centre. The charity provides a day centre for physically and sensory impaired adults. The Kent club also presented a series of cheques to local charities including £400 to Shepway Spectrum Arts, £200 to St Mary’s Primary School and £500 to the Rainbow Centre Nursery School.

DEMENTIA CAFÉ PLANS are well under way to open a Memory Moments Café for dementia sufferers in Haywards Heath. Members of the Rotary Club of The Sussex Vale recently presented the charity Know Dementia with a £500 cheque after attending a Dementia Friends course.

HIDDEN HAVEN AFTER six months’ hard work, a Hidden Haven was opened at Lockyer’s School in Corfe Mullen, Dorset by Robert McBain, Chairman of the Wimborne Rotary Charity Committee. The Hidden Haven is a tranquil garden corner used by pupils and staff, and was created in an overgrown corner of the school which Rotary supported by supplying a bench seat and garden equipment storage.

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Dr Frankie becomes honorary member of Lira Rotary



SOUTH coast charity with strong Rotary links in Africa is looking for partners in the UK to help raise funds for a new anaesthetic machine in a maternity unit. Poole Africa Link is a medical charity attached to Poole Hospital which has been working in Africa for the past decade. Initially they began their work in South Sudan, but more recently staff from the Dorset-based organisation has been working in Northern Uganda. Dr. Frankie Dormon, the medical lead for the Poole Africa Link, revealed how they have partnered with a newly-formed university in Lira which is currently using the local hospital, but has ambitious plans to develop a university hospital. Dr. Dormon explained: “The first stage of this is to train midwives and open a maternity unit at the university and these plans have almost been realised. One of their difficulties, however, is finding a fullyfunctional anaesthetic machine. “During our visits we have developed a strong network of friends and one of these is the anaesthetist and her husband, Levi Abongo. Levi has been a hard working

member of Rotary for many years and recently headed up Rotary International for Uganda, Kenya and, I believe, South Sudan.” Dr. Dormon, who was recently made an Honorary Member of the Rotary Club of Lira, said the charity is trying to raise funds to buy a Glostavent anaesthetic machine, which does not require a separate oxygen supply, a commodity which is difficult to source in Africa because of inadequate supply chains. “The Glostavent is ideally suited to Africa, and I know that many Rotary clubs around the UK have purchased these machines for use in Africa, particularly in Malawi and Zambia,” added Dr. Dormon. “We are desperately searching for funds to purchase this machine and to take it with us on our next visit in March, where I will be able to train Levi’s wife and the other anaesthetists in its use. “I would be so pleased to be able to give Rotary support to someone who has worked so hard for Rotary in his own country and am very happy to come to meetings and talk should any club wish me to do so.” For more details email:



HE annual dragon boat race has emerged as one of the biggest Rotary events organised in northeast England. Clubs from across the region were involved in organising the event at Hetton Lyons Country Park in County Durham. Thousands turned out to watch the 12-team fund-raiser.

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SWESTRY Rotarians have been working with schoolchildren from Shropshire to learn life skills. LifeLine was set up 11 years ago by the club thanks to a bequest from local author and naturalist Mary Hignett targeted at 10 and 11-year-old children. Working in tandem with the emergency services, including the Coastguard and British Transport Police, the day-long camp at the Agricultural Showground in Oswestry focussed on a number of key issues. These included stranger danger, internet safety, bullying, together with cycle and road safety. A number of practical scenarios were devised to present the youngsters with challenges they might face. Some 500 children from England and Wales took part which this year was attended by Charles Lillis and Sue Thompson, the High Sheriffs of Shropshire and Powys, and Rotary District Governor, Beryl Cotton. “We continue to see the value of this event by the response of the schools and the children attending” said Oswestry Rotary President, David Davies. “We must keep revising the scenarios to make sure that they are relevant. I am delighted by the support that the services, our members, friends and family give to this event.”



UNNING 75 marathons in 75 days at the ripe age of 75 is no mean feat. But that’s what Yorkshireman Ray Matthews did in his fundraising efforts for a special school in Rotherham. The gruelling challenge raised £35,000 for Rotherham's Newman School, which caters for a range of special educational needs and disabilities. “I’m feeling better than I should be feeling,” said Ray after he completed the epic feat. He said: "It has been tough at times to do 75 marathons in 75 days, but I've done what I said I'd do.” Following Ray’s marathon effort, the Rotary Club of Rotherham Sitwell joined forces with the runner to provide an adventure woodland path and equipment for the children at the South Yorkshire school. The equipment included climbing frames, wheelchair-friendly roundabouts and swings.

Sitwell Rotary Club is well-known for raising funds for local charities and getting involved with community projects. It has been helping Newman School for some years, organising school-based events and away-day trips. The Rotary club looked to two building companies, Eurovia Contracting and Fortem to help realise the dream, and Rotherham Council also lent its support to the project which was completed over the summer holidays. The path cost £40,000 to build and, along with Ray’s £35,000, the whole project is worth £75,000 to Newman School. Money is still being raised through Ray’s website Rotarian Tom Knight said: “The school, Rotherham Council, Eurovia, Fortem and Sitwell Rotary all worked together as one team to build this project for the children of Newman School and everyone feels privileged to do so.”

“I’m feeling better than I should be feeling,” said Ray after he completed the epic feat. He said: "It has been tough at times to do 75 marathons in 75 days, but I've done what I said I'd do.” 42 // ROTARY

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HE Devon-based Marpool School RotaKids Club has just completed its third year and this year alone it has seen membership grow

'MyLife' has been developed and run by the Reflex Charity, providing life skills training for young offenders, helping them integrate back into the community on release from prison.

by 90%. Earlier in the year, they were the first RotaKids Club in the South West to be awarded a National Presidential Citation after meeting all six of the qualifying standards. For the end of year RotaKids’ lunch, they invited President Martyn Clegg of the Rotary Club of Exmouth & District to join them and to accept a cheque on behalf of the End Polio Now Campaign. The youngsters raised £550 through packing bags at a supermarket, and End Polio Now was one of four charities to benefit. The Rotary club's aim is to empower three years of RotaKids to fulfil their dream of further service through the formation of an Interact club.



AMSEY Rotary Club has been supporting an innovative programme which is working with young offenders in Cambridgeshire. 'MyLife' has been developed and run by the Reflex Charity, providing life skills training for young offenders, helping them integrate back into the community on release from prison. Nationally, there are some 850 to 950 youths aged under-18 who are in custody at any one time. Reflex works with around 40% of these, in the face of statistics which reveal that 68% reoffend within a year of release. 'MyLife' is an accredited course for young people exploring attitudes and behaviours. It addresses social, moral and spiritual development, bringing positive change to the lives of young people as they transition into adulthood and helps break the cycle of offending and reoffending.

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With the help of a Rotary grant, the Ramsey club has supported the accreditation and helped fund an administrator to recruit and train volunteers to work with young offenders – over 200 youths have been through the course this past year. Meanwhile, Peterborough Minster Rotarians visited HMP Peterborough. During a tour of the facilities they were shown the work being carried out by prisoners and discussed the potential for Rotary to get involved in a scheme to develop employability skills. Rotarians agreed to help by holding mock interviews similar to those held for local school pupils. The first interview sessions have already taken place and it is hoped this exciting new initiative can develop. This is a significant opportunity for Peterborough Minster Rotary to take on a new project helping the local community.


Got a story for us? Send it in (with a good quality picture) to

Look for us online at or follow us on Facebook: /RotaryinGBI Twitter: @RotaryGBI YouTube: Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland

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Community defibrillation: a guide to Rotarians


OTARY has been at the forefront of supporting the placement of community defibrillators, ever since they were deregulated in 2009. However, the keenness of Rotary clubs and its members has led to a plethora of different project types, styles, equipment and generally a lack of awareness of governance issues. In 2017, Rotary in Great Britain & Ireland agreed to follow a standard process for community defibrillators, addressing the equipment, liabilities and governance. Working with the national and leading charity, the Community Heartbeat Trust, all projects now have a standard high specification defibrillator choice;

• A cabinet choice to reflect different situations

• A full Governance package allowing Rotary to see all projects under way and installed

• A full training regimen to ensure that projects are accepted well into the community.

All funded or supplied projects should also show sustainability for at least 10 years. Most ambulance services also now insist on evidence of governance, and many will require a local contract to be agreed before they will activate. There are now many defibrillators to choose from for placement into the public domain. However, few have been specifically designed for community use. A modern device will be easy to use, 44 // ROTARY

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provide maximum support to the rescuer, have features enabling good CPR to be undertaken, allow easy access to the clinical data and are cost effective over the life of the unit, typically 10 to 15 years. Older designs are unlikely to have these modern features. An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a powerful medical device and if used correctly as part of a system of integrated events, can save a great many lives and every community should have access to one, but done with knowledge and resilience, and not done just to ‘tick the box’. Most members of the public will not know or necessarily understand the subtleties in the differences of defibrillator equipment. Therefore, CHT helps communities by undertaking a review of all common defibrillators, asking some 52 questions of the device in its relation to use by untrained members of the community. A score is applied and the top third are deemed as being very suitable for community use (we call these group 1 devices). We do the same for cabinets, applying the ShockBox marque. Whilst cabinets can be locked or unlocked, the choice should be based upon need and local factors, and if a locked cabinet used, it should have a marine grade, vandal resistant lock or similar – you cannot afford to have a cabinet jam in a rescue. It is unwise to use mild steel singleskinned cabinets within five miles of a coastal location, and if in Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Cornwall and some inner cities, dual language may be a requirement

(for example, adherence to the ‘Welsh Language Act)

Undertaking a sustainable Rotary project Firstly, all aspects of the project need to be considered, including the sustainability aspects, and a full understanding of the project and a map of the process to undertake. In the recent project undertaken by Bedford Rotary Club, an analysis of the marketplace was undertaken, consultation with the local ambulance service and parish councils undertaken to ensure the placements were not duplicating already placed resources, and an analysis of suitable equipment undertaken. In this case, the Cardiac Science G5 was chosen as this also matched another project undertaken with CHT and the Bedfordshire Fire service to place G5 devices throughout Bedfordshire, thus allowing compatibility and ease of support and training. At least one life has been saved by this Rotary project, with a successful rescue in October 2017. Communities should also realise that community defibrillators are covered by ‘Activation radii’ set by the local ambulance service. In the East Midlands this is 500 metres, but in the South West it is only 200 metres. This can have an impact on the equipment chosen, how it is activated, and also whether it is supported by a localised group of trained volunteers. The ambulance service also will not activate a community defibrillator if there is a lone rescuer present.

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Defibrillators and children A child in defibrillator terms is anyone under 25Kg in weight. Typically in the UK this means seven and under, although a six-year-old weighing 29kg would be an adult. Cardiac Arrest occurs very rarely in this age group, and for a community placement ambulance services recommend only using adult devices in the public domain. This reduces the liability of incorrect usage of paediatric devices on anyone over 25kg. Some devices, such as the Zoll AED 3, have paediatric buttons which will automatically revert to adult settings, and thus are probably more appropriate than other devices with child ‘switches’.

About the Community Heartbeat Trust charity (CHT) CHT invented the concept of the community public access defibrillator – cPAD, as well as the concept of using redundant telephone kiosks. As a national charity, working across the country and also supporting placements in Greece, we began by setting high standards and quality at a time that everyone else was trying to just cut costs. As such we work to a high level, ensuring communities are protected, use the right/best equipment and making sure the projects are long term sustainable. In addition to Rotary, we also work with the Rugby Football Union, cricket, many commercial organisations such as MidCounties Coop, and about 600 town and parish councils. To date we have delivered approximately 4000 sites across the UK, with the vast majority governed by the WebNos Governance system, the UK’s only defibrillator governance system. We are advisors to NHS England and also the Welsh Government, and also work with all 11 of the UK ambulance services, as well as many fire and police. Like Rotary, we believe in ‘service above self ’.

For more information, or to obtain your ‘Guide to Community Defibrillation’ please contact the CHT at our website or call 0845 86 27739

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An old phone box becomes the new home for a defibrillator

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Special feature

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Editor's letter

and finally... with Managing Editor Dave King


NE of the perks of being your magazine editor is interviewing some interesting people and occasionally posing challenging

questions. In this month’s issue, I particularly enjoyed chatting to Rotarian Jean Best, whose innovative peace project was recognised at the United Nations. Jean is a softly-spoken Scot, but that belies the passion and determination she shares to succeed in this ground-breaking initiative. It’s a project which is changing minds, re-focusing attitudes and shaping the future – and we need strong-willed people like Jean to take up the mantle. There is much we can learn from children, said Jean. Unlike adults, youngsters are far more open-minded, they listen and are receptive to change. That’s why she is so excited about extending her project to Ireland. This generation will never truly bring peace to the Emerald Isle, she reckoned, it requires the next generation to come together to recognise how peace is the only pathway. It was good to see Paralympian Ade Adetipan MBE fronting TV coverage of the Invictus Games from Toronto recently. I know that Ade is so excited by how close we are to eliminating polio for good and recognises how Rotary has been at the forefront of this mission. Ade really is as charming and cheeky as he comes across on TV. When I met him earlier this year at the Manchester conference, it was clear this a guy whose passion is sincere and who, incidentally, has promised a wild party the day polio is

kicked into touch. But this year my highlight was meeting the dream-like actress Virginia McKenna OBE to talk to her and son Will Travers OBE about their Born Free Foundation. I’ve been fortunate enough to interview a vast number of celebrities in an interesting journalism career. The wrestler Giant Haystacks once accidentally damaged three vertibrae in my neck after an overexuberant post-interview photoshoot, while I have occasionally been hugely disappointed by some celebrities' off-camera persona. Not so Virginia, who is now 86 and looking fantastic. After the interview about her conservation charity, I mentioned to Virginia that one of my favourite movies is the 1958 war film Carve Her Name With Pride, where she plays the secret agent Violette Szabo, who embarked on espionage missions in occupied France. She must have been asked about the film so many times, but Virginia spoke movingly about how much the movie means to her. She revealed how she takes pleasure from regularly attending a service

at Hereford Cathedral to mark the life of Violette. It is attended by the heroine’s daughter, Tania, where Virginia reads the moving Leo Marks poem which was used by Violette and the Special Operations Executive as a code: The life that I have Is all that I have And the life that I have Is yours The love that I have Of the life that I have Is yours and yours and yours A sleep I shall have A rest I shall have Yet death will be but a pause For the peace of my years In the long green grass Will be yours and yours and yours What a privilege, what a lady!

Dave King interviewing Virginia McKenna and her and son Will Travers

Editorial material and opinion expressed in Rotary do not necessarily reflect the views of Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland or the publisher. Every effort is made to ensure that the magazine’s content is accurate. Information is published in good faith, but no liability can be accepted for loss or inconvenience arising from error or omission. The editor welcomes contributions of articles, news items, photographs and letters, but is under no obligation to publish unsolicited material. The editor reserves the right to edit for clarity or length. Contributors must ensure that all material submitted is not in breach of copyright or that they have obtained any necessary permission, in writing, for its reproduction. While every care will be taken with material submitted to Rotary magazine, no responsibility can be accepted for loss or damage. Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland believes in the highest standards journalistic integrity. Rotary International in Great Britain & Ireland and the publisher do not accept responsibility for advertising and insert content. Advertisements are accepted at face value and no liability can be accepted for the actions of advertisers.

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Rotary Magazine December 2017 - January 2018  
Rotary Magazine December 2017 - January 2018  

In this issue we speak to Jonathan Cavendish, the producer of the Hollywood film Breathe, which is bringing the inspiring true story of his...