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SEATON: Rotarians pull together

Thursday, 15 May 2014

JOINT?EFFORT: Carol Jeffs (left) from the Illawarra Sunrise Rotary Club in Australia, with Jean Smith of Seaton Rotary Club, during her visit last week

JOINT?EFFORT: Carol Jeffs (left) from the Illawarra Sunrise Rotary Club in Australia, with Jean Smith of Seaton Rotary Club, during her visit last week

Rotarians in Seaton have helped to secure clean water for a school in the Philippines, after raising more than £500 towards an international project in conjunction with Rotary Clubs around the world. Seaton Rotary Club first became involved with the relief effort eight years ago and has since established a close relationship with the Illawarra Sunrise Rotary Club in Australia and the Metro Bacolod Rotary Club in the Philippines itself. Through the joint efforts of the three sister clubs, volunteers have paid for entire villages to be vaccinated against forms of Meningitis and worked to build key facilities for communities, among many other projects over the eight years. And now, after another year of fundraising closer to home, Rotarians in Seaton were able to celebrate installing a portable water system that will not only help school children access clean water, but teach them important skills to help them into work later in life. Jean Smith, who is in charge of international projects at Seaton Rotary Club, said: “When the children leave school it is unlikely that they will have much in the way of employment opportunities. “But this facility will enable them to learn how to grow vegetables and look after livestock, which gives them vital knowledge of farming and animal husbandry. “We must extend a big thank you to everyone who has helped us raise this amount but we are urging people to continue to support the project through Seaton Rotary Club over the next year – there is still more work to do.” More than half the £1,070 total donated to the project was raised by members of the group over the last year, with £500 granted by the Rotary District Foundation. Seaton Rotarians also welcomed Dr Carol Jeffs, a former president of the Illawarra Sunrise Club in Australia who has been heavily involved with the project, to give a talk at their meeting last week. Dr Jeffs said: “Over the last eight years we have been able to provide vaccinations against forms of Meningitis for several outlying slum villages in the Philippines. “We have also provided assistance with the building of a school and maintaining its facilities year after year. “But there is still a lot of damage due to the recent hurricane and our work there is an ongoing project. We must keep raising more money to enable us to continue the work.” Anyone who would like to send a donation for the next phase of the project should send a cheque made payable to Seaton Rotary Club to Stafford Cottage, Stafford Cross, Colyton, Devon EX24 6HZ. Seaton Rotary Club would welcome new members and anyone interested in joining the club or finding out more about Rotary to ring Jean Smith on 01297 625607.

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