Free Portland News
June 2019 By Keith Barnard-Jones
Last month I mentioned how grateful the club members are to all those who have placed donations in the Wishing Well at Portland Bill. The total collected so far is now heading towards the £5000 mark. That represents a lot of people who have been helped by your generosity. Thank you all so much.
Today I have even better news for you. We now owe a massive Thankyou to Tesco in Easton who have placed our Whirly Well, (or whatever it is called) near their entrance for people to leave their donations as well. This is a fun way of collecting as children, or the young at heart, can roll their pennies, or whatever, round the top part and watch the coins spiral down, and down, and down until they fall into the collecting chamber beneath. I have not tried rolling £50 notes down yet, but there must be a way for someone who wishes to try it! Let me know.
The nominations for this year’s Community Award have now closed and the winner will be announced shortly. We have a long list of “celebrities” who have received this award over the years since it was first won by Mrs. Nellie Mitchell in 1985. It is interesting looking back at the names which represent the individuals themselves who have just got on and helped others, and also the organisations for which they act as volunteers. We have a lot of great people on the island.
As I keep mentioning and boring everyone silly, Rotary is, actually Rotary International and there are now Rotary Clubs in almost every country in the world. Many of these work together with each other and we are no exception as we are twinned with the Rotary Club of Vire in Calvados (head south from Cherbourg, turn right at St. Lo and you are, basically, in Vire). Each year since the twinning was set up we have either sent a party of Rotarians and partners across the Channel to France, or they have come over here. This year is their turn to visit and so, in September, we will receive the delegation from Vire to the Island. Yes, some of this is social and offers continuing friendships – but that is what Rotary is all about. Without fun and friends, Rotary would not work. But we have also worked on projects together over the years – another example of Service Above Self at work.
And to work together, we need members and I am delighted to say that Robert Grigsby and Mary-Jane Cullen have decide to become Rotarians. Welcome to the team both of you.
Finally, as the Rotary Year closes, I have just returned from our District (Wessex) Assembly when all, or most of, the incoming Club Chairs for next year – International, Community, Youth, Foundation (our Rotary Charity) and all the others are trained. This was held at the Bath and West Show Ground. The new logo from 1st. July was picked by the in-coming President of Rotary International, Mark Maloney – an attorney from Decatur, Alabama - and reflect my earlier comments about the internationality of Rotary and is “Rotary Connects The World”. Being non-political and non-sectarian, that is exactly what we try and do. Mark is relatively young for a President. I actually sat on the Nominating Committee several years ago when he was judged to be too young to be a President!! Ridiculous and I voted for him as he would have been good for our image. However, he has now made it, at long last, and we look forward to another great Rotary Year with him at the helm. Keith