ROTARY CLUB OF GLOUCESTER - COMMUNITY/YOUTH COMMITTEE.
REPORT on 2014/15 Programme to CLUB AGM 24 APRIL 2015.
This is the fourth year of a continuing effort by the Club to develop projects and activities that seek to help our local community and the wide ranging issues that prevail. Nearly all the Programme adopted at Club Assembly on 23rd May 2014 has been achieved. There has been some minor additions/changes but the budget approved by the Treasurer and Club Council, of £12,100.00 will not be overspent and there is likely to be a small underspending.
This extensive programme could not have been delivered without the funds raised, especially car parking, and the positive discussions by members of the Committee all of whom take lead roles on implementing projects/activities and contribute in discussions.
A. COMMUNITY INITIATIVES.
1.Gloucestershire Carers. The day trips organised this year by Carers Gloucestershire, for people who live in the City area, include a day out in Bath, a day to Kew Botanical gardens and a ride on the West Somerset railway. Other outings planned are to The Greenway for tea and croquet and to the seaside. Approx 200 carers have been out on these trips. The Budget of £2,500.00 provides financial assistance and the carers organisation are piloting a voluntary contribution of £5 per trip. Letters of appreciation are received. Comments include “ we had lovely day out “ “ it is a pleasure to have things organised for me for once “ “ Thank you Rotary ”.
2. Muslim Carers. These women carers have been supported through 3 workshops. On one the speaker was the cancer prevention lady from the Cobalt unit. Another workshop was a speaker who was a specialist Diabetes nurse. These informal gatherings have been invaluable for a modest cost.
3. Salvation Army. 350 boxes purchased to enable Army volunteers and other helpers to pack hampers for deserving families in need at Christmas. Provided by a local firm who deliver them direct to The Citadel when needed. In addition, for the first time, 300 Santa sacks for the toy distribution. This support has helped the staff/volunteers to re arrange the packing, now completed in one day, and enables The Army staff and volunteers to deliver the hampers themselves.
4 .Emmaus. “ Working together to end homelessness”. In Gloucester there were 23 companions in a house in Barnwood. Other accommodation has been purchased or rented so they can now offer a home for 33 people with meaningful work. The people have to be homeless and free of alcohol and/or drugs dependency. Work is provided in 3 shops in Stroud, Nailsworth, Cheltenham and at the superstore in Chequers Bridge. The companions are paid ,then contribute towards their living expenses leaving funds to enable them to save money to assist their return to community life. Several companions have now got a job and a flat to resume a normal life.
Increased numbers means they have to generate more income and run additional enterprise activities. The Club has assisted the renovation of a workshop to enable the repair ,improvement of unwanted furniture. Tests have shown that a small table stripped, repaired and/or re-painted or varnished can sell for at least twice the price. If furniture can be restored then this reduces the chance of it going to landfill. Grant of £565.00 to help restore the workshop.
5. Meals for the Homeless . There are organisations who providefood on each day of the week. Mondays is a hot lunch at The CItadel; Tuesday is coffee in the Park St. Mission with soup and sandwiches at the Seventh Day Adventist Church, Cromwell St. Wednesday is a hot drink, soup and hot snacks in Gloucester City Mission, Park St. Thursday breakfast Club at the Cathedral Café. Soup and sandwiches at the Adventist Church. Friday is a recent addition of a lunch at Mariners Church Hall.
A recent joint venture by several churches is a soup run with food and sleeping bags probably at weekends. Discussions on going as to how Rotary can best assist on a one off start up basis.
6. Rotary Community Awards. President Clive requested that he wanted any end of year surplus in the Charity Account to be distributed to small local organisations where even a small grant would make a real difference to many people. This is instead of The President awarding the grant to one organisation. This request has developed into The Rotary Community Awards 2015 and it is anticipated that The Club will be able to distribute circa. £ 5,000.00.Council have agreed that a small panel of President, John Smith and David seed to adjudicate the awards. The cheques will be distributed on Friday 19th June at an extended lunch time meeting.
There is considerable interest from organisations, the media and Club members on this significant development.
B. YOUNG PEOPLE
7. NEETS - ROTARY COMMUNITY QUALIFICATION. Since the Club assisted Prospect Training and Sarah Powell to develop and organise this course there has been 260 young people who have attended one of the 3 courses organised each year for the past 3 years, 93% of these young people have achieved the qualification and we can see a trend emerging of young people who take part in this course are more likely to progress into further education, employment with training or an apprenticeship. The Rotary Community Qualification is now accredited nationally. This qualification provides enrichment, wraparound support and the opportunity for young people to understand more about Rotary, how to become a volunteer and understand the community in which they live or are part of.
At the recent District Conference Sarah and her team led a break out session on the topic. As promised a “ Box” had been produced explaining to Clubs how to get started, the programme for the day’s course, and samples of training material. The cost per box is a one off fee of £320.00 and the Club will receive 15% from the sale of each box in recognition pf our early financial support. So far in D.1100 although none have been sold interest is growing and Sarah has been asked to contact some of the Rotary Clubs that attended the Conference to see if there is enough interest to get the qualification moving in their community. This may well be a slow burn because it is something different and Rotary Clubs will need to drive this forward with other partners/providers.
8 .RYLA. Two places to be funded from a budget of £1,000.00. The 2015 course is fully booked and starts on 28 July. There is an increasing interest in this leadership Course. A number of possible applicants from secondary schools. Interviews may need to be arranged.
9.Kids Out. Club support for 4 inner City primary schools to select children to attend Cattle Country.
This years event will be held on Wednesday 10 June 2015. The financial cost includes coaches to Cattle Country, T shirts, baseball caps, sandwich lunch, drinks and ice cream.
The entire organisation before the day and on the day is a Club responsibility. This year there will be 11 Rotary Clubs bringing 480 children, many with disabilities. In addition there will be 173 helpers, 73 rotarians plus members from our Club and Inner Wheel. The ladies organise, with precision, the lunch arrangements. Tea and coffee and other soft drinks available free throughout the day. The venue has to be tidied up at the end. Donation of £1,600.00 to cover costs from 2014 Tree of Light.
10. Life Education. An independent organisation has mobile classrooms which deliver age related educational programmes to primary schools to explain the effects of smoking, alcohol and drugs. Schools book the mobiles but in recent years the effect of budgetary constraints has persuaded Governors and Heads to cancel these regular annual visits.
The Club recognise this issue and decided that inner City schools need financial support to continue with this much needed programme. In the current year arrangements have been agreed with 3 inner city primary schools to pay 50% of the daily charge to enable the school to book the mobile.
12. Contact with Youth Organisations. This was a new activity. The Brockworth platoon of the ACF agreed to help at the Asda store collection and Tree of Light. Rotarians on the rota agreed that the 5 cadets were smart, polite, enthusiastic, and a credit to the Regiment. They each did a 4 hour shift at both locations. Agreed a donation of £150.00. The cadets ‘s involvement in a community activity has been particularly successful. They want to help the Club at other events.
13. Urban Theatre. A new involvement. Funded 6 workshopsto enable children at MilestonesSchool to experience the performing arts. The children enjoyed the workshops and put on a show in the Cathedral. This was a successful initiative. The founder of The Urban Heart Theatre gave a talk to the Club.
14 Holidays for Disadvantaged Children. Holiday in Hotel in Weston-super-Mare for two single parent families, each with 2 young children from Matson. Owners reported no problems. Letters/cards of thanks received. Total cost £450.00. Grant of £400.00 received from a Rotary Holiday Trust, so net cost to the Club was £50.00.
15. Pantomime. Another new activity. Children from the Coney Hill Primary school with the Head and Deputy Head together with teaching staff attended. All had a great time. Thanks documented in a colourful card and a file of pictures and drawings prepared by the children.
16. District Football. A late notification of a District organised Under 12’s football competition but through contacts by a Club member Abbeymead Rovers represented the Club and won the District event. Next stop is the national finals at the FA centre.
C. VOCATIONAL VISITS
Visit to Jet Age Museum , Staverton which due to numbers interested there were two separate visits. Arrangements under way to visit the Skills Centre in Tuffley.
I hope you have all read this lengthy and I hope informative report- my thanks for doing so.
Finally my appreciation again to all members who assisted to raise the Charitable funds and to the Committee members for all their support and willingness to be active in “ Serving our Community”.
David Seed. Chairman.
15 April 2015
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