Community Service/ Big Dinner Big Donation

Members met on March 30th to participate in the international Big Dinner, and raise money for the "500 Miles" charity.

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"If I could walk 500 Miles .."

Members of the Rotary Club of Billericay, their partners, friends and fellow Rotarians, met for a great meal at the Ivory Rooms on the evening of Monday March 30th, 2015 to raise money for “500 Miles”.  This charity was founded by Olivia Giles in 2008.

As a quadruple amputee herself following a devastating attack of meniningitis, she says “I know  how important that independence is. The charity’s name comes from The Proclaimers’ famous lyrics, “I would walk 500 miles”, because that’s our aim – to get disabled people in Africa up and walking”.  The charity seeks to help people with mobility difficulties and give them a chance to live independent lives.

March, 2015 was designated as The Big Dinner month to raise over £500,000 specifically targeting  Malawi and Zambia.  The event consists of hundreds of separate dinners eaten all over the world, some of which were showcased in a special web-stream broadcast hosted by Fred MacAulay, who attended a celebrity dinner himself.  Every dinner will bring new life and hope to someone in Africa who needs an artificial limb or limb support, to help them achieve mobility or full body function.

Videos recorded for the Big Dinner in Edinburgh, highlighting the work of the charity and the needs of its aid recipients, were shown during our meal.

There was good fellowship, good food, and, thanks to the moving videos, members pledged £1825 (including Gift Aid) from their own pockets for this very worthwhile cause.

We have since received a very grateful thank you letter from Olivia Giles, head of the "500 Miles" charity thanking us for "the club's extremely generous donation".  She goes on to say "the money will be used to significantly improve the quality of life for people struggling with mobility difficulties."  To read the letter in full please click on the icon below: