22 February 2018 -Round Square Conference 2017, South Africa – Katie Holdsworth & Rachel Hoskins (Beaconhurst School)

Thu 22nd February 2018 at 18.00 - 20.30

22 February 2018 -Round Square Conference 2017, South Africa – Katie Holdsworth & Rachel Hoskins (Beaconhurst School)

Visit to the Round Square Conference

On Thursday, members welcomed two sixth form students from Beaconhurst School, Katie Holdsworth and Rachel Hoskins, who reported on their attendance in the 2017 Round Square International Conference held in Cape Town from 30th September to the 5th October. Also welcomed to the meeting was Mrs Haughton, a teacher in Beaconhurst who accompanied the girls to the Conference.

Round Square is a worldwide network of some 120,000 students in 180 schools in 50 countries across six continents.  Membership of the Round Square network offers schools a framework for excellence and continuous improvement, with schools sharing an approach to learning built around six IDEALS of learning, based on Internationalism, Democracy, Environmentalism, Adventure, Leadership and Service.  Students collaborate and share experiences with like-minded schools around the world. In recognition of Beaconhurst School’s successful engagement with Round Square, and the fulfilling of relevant criteria, it was presented with Global Status at the Conference.

Katie and Rachel explained that the slogan of the Conference was “unite to ignite the fire within’. Following a welcome by the Round Square President, His Majesty King Constantine, students were divided into Baraza groups to undertake a number of activities.  These included a race in different parts of the Cape Town Waterfront; an adventurous day walking to Language Monument and up Paarl Rock; and a day of service in a township, playing with children and giving them lunch. There were also uplifting talks from a variety of speakers.

The highlight of the Conference was, of course, the opportunity to meet and share experiences with students from around the world, with, helpfully, English being the preferred language for communication. The visits to the various areas of Cape Town gave insights into a number of important issues being faced there, including the huge disparity in living standards, particularly emphasised in the townships.  But also very noticeable was the extreme shortage of water in the country.  This meant that when having a shower water had to be saved in a bucket to be used to flush the toilet.

Summing up, Rachel and Katie spoke of their greater understanding arising from sharing experiences with others at the Conference, and of the encouragement to see that by working with others problems can be overcome.  They both thanked the Club for the donation that had helped to make the trip to the Conference a possibility.

Speaker’s Host Allan Macpherson thanked the girls for a very illuminating presentation which had helped to bring the activities of the Conference to life for members.

In addition to the meeting on Thursday, the annual Club Table Quiz was held on Friday in the Bridge of Allan Parish Church.  Teams enjoyed the challenge of solving a range of brain-teasing questions set by Rotarian Alan Lee. The eventual winners were the “Latecomers” team: Ken Murray, Alasdair Mackie and George and Lynn Morrison.