The Satellite Group & Greenoaks School

How the Group has "adopted" the Greenoaks School

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Our Club was one of the UK's pilot Club's for which a Satellite Group was approved as an experiment in making Rotary more accessible to those in existing Clubs who find a regular lunch time meeting difficult to make on a regular basis.  Our Satellite Group has been active for a little while now, and the following is an insight into what goes goes on from one of its members.

"The Satellite Group's principal aim, apart from fully supporting all the activities of the club, is to be actively involved with the community, whether this is by way of spectacle collections, gardening or projects etc.  Early on, we realised that the Rotary Club of Northampton had raised a lot of money over the years to support specific needs of a wide variety of charities here and abroad.  However, in the vast majority of cases once the donation had been made, we lost touch and moved on to something new.  Sustainability and Rotarian involvement are the key issues with District & Global Grants, so why not with the support we give?  As a result Satellite decided to "adopt" Greenoaks School.

Greenoaks have been part of Kids Out for a great many years and will be with us again on 10th June 2015. Furthermore, they supported our Swimarathon raising several hundred pounds.  In return they gained a grant from the event to enable them to buy some outdoor beanbags.  They were delighted.

Currently we are building them a hexagon of raised garden planters, expertly designed by Rtn. Clive.  We anticipate delivering them to the school mid-April - the start of the summer term.

The major overhaul of Fairfields School library cost less than expected as so much was "hands on" work, and the planters for Greenfields School came in substantially under budget.  With available funds, we were pleased to agree to buy books for Greenoaks library, nearly 90 in all, at a cost of just £200.00.  Margaret & I visited the school in February, and were surprised to find that a special assembly had been arranged to formally thank Rotary.  Head teacher, Rebecca Osborne, pictured back row second from right, and Lynda Green, Literacy Leader pictured far right, each read the opening page from one of the books.  After a few words from yours truly, Rebecca announced that the special unit were once again entering a team for Swimarathon, and that all parents of the pupils in the mainstream school would be getting a letter from her urging them to support the event.  She said she would hope that at least 12 more children would enter and that would make three teams in all.  She said this was a good way to show their thanks for all that our club was doing for their school.

Later this year, we will be covering the cost of the children in the special unit going to the Hub for the evening, and for refreshments.

As I write this Greenoaks are selling crocus badges to celebrate Rotary Day, a Club member has lent them a canoe for a school project, and at some stage I hope we can get a rota together to listen to children read on a regular basis.

The Satellite Group is convinced that this relationship is good for both the school and the club, and we expect to be involved with more projects for them in future months/years.  We have not forgotten our other contacts, and as and when requests come our way they will be given careful and sympathetic consideration - funds and time permitting."

Rtn Trevor Thomas