The Rotary Club of Athlone started its new season on 1 July, 2021. At a recent Zoom meeting Des Campbell took over from Billy Nott as President of the club. Des is a dentist practising in Irishtown and is well-known in musical circles in Athlone and also as a senior oarsman in Athlone Rowing Club.
Des outlined his plans for the year which will include an extensive youth programme involving the schools in the Young Leader, Young Writer and Young Chef competitions. Ethel Gavin, recently retired as a prison governor in the Prison Service will head up this programme. Ciaran Mannion will continue with the international programme. He is currently transferring mountain bikes from the container in Ballinasloe to the Prison Service for repairs prior to their transfer to Gambia as part of the School Bikes for Africa project. Despite COVID 19 the club ran the “Tree of Remembrance” over the Christmas period last year, providing much need funds to local and Rotary charities. Next year this project will be headed up by local pharmacist, Philip McGorisk.
Rotary is a worldwide organisation with 72 clubs in Ireland, North and South. The general theme for this year is “Serve to change lives”. Its key humanitarian project has been to rid the world of polio. Back in 1988 it spearheaded this campaign at a time when there were over 1000 cases a day in 120 countries, paralysing and even killing children. Since then the number of cases has dropped by 99.9% leaving only 2 countries with this terrible disease today.
The club is run by a Council (committee) which meets regularly to organise events. This year new Council members are Mike Ganley and Simon Cavanagh with Pat Ryan as President elect. Club Officers Tom Murphy and Martin Egan continue in their role as honorary secretary and treasurer respectively.
The club is also delighted to announce that one of its members, Tom Mulligan, has been appointed as an assistant governor for Rotary Ireland.
Last year Athlone Rotary was successful in adding a number of new members to their list and anyone interested in joining should contact the Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org) or any member of the Club.
The Rotary Club of Athlone was established in 1985, celebrating its 36th year this year. Rotary International was founded 110 years ago and now has a membership of 1.2 million with more than 35,000 clubs. The Athlone Club has been meeting on a Monday in the Radisson Hotel but in the current pandemic is conducting its meetings on Zoom. It is intended to return and restart meetings in the Radisson when it becomes possible.
Mission. The Rotary mission is to provide service to others, promote integrity and advance world understanding, goodwill and peace through our fellowship of business, professional and community leaders. The members of the Club give their time and talents to serve our local community and enjoy business as well as social networking opportunities.
Rotary members believe that we have a shared responsibility to take action in our world’s most important issues. Together we:
• Promote peace
• Fight disease
• Provide clean water, sanitation and hygiene
• Save mothers and children
• Support education
• Grow local economies
• Youth programmes for schools including Leadership, Young Writer and Young Chef
• Youth Exchange
• Tree of Remembrance at Christmas in aid of local and Rotary charities
• School Bikes for Africa
• Humanitarian aid to Lebanon
• Annual Concert in aid of local charity
• Fellowship and social events
Be part of a global network of volunteers, trying to make the world a better place. Please also see the 'links & news' page for information from the local district and live feeds from Rotary International and Rotary International in GB&I.