Press Reports/ 19th November

Gillian Price and Sarah Thomas, teachers at Croesgoch school, to talk about their visit to Mapholaneng in Lesotho in southern Africa.

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The Rotary Club met at the Bay hotel on the evening of November 19. President Maggie Stringer welcomed speakers Gillian Price and Sarah Thomas as well as several guests and partners . David and Charmian Hughes were congratulated and toasted on achieving their golden wedding anniversary. Vanessa Walker reported on the club trip to the Sunderland Trust at Pembroke Dock, highlighting the wealth of human stories and  remarkable physical relics displayed in the restored Georgian chapel. The subsequent excellent lunch at Neyland Yacht Club completed a memorable visit.

Notice was given of the sale of Grocery Grab raffle tickets  in aid of Rotary charities during the next fortnight .A short slide show of the recent District Conference in Llandudno starred the club entry as the ‘Fishguard Ferry’, imaginatively choreographed by Val Owen and featuring Secretary Nigel as the funnel. 

President Maggie then invited Gillian Price and Sarah Thomas, teachers at Croesgoch school, to talk about their visit to Mapholaneng in Lesotho in southern Africa. The schools have been linked through several 2-way visits since 2005 . Mapholaneng is a community in the highlands, remote from the capital Maseru, with only basic facilities available in local schools. An important inducement for school attendance is free porridge for breakfast – but the children must bring their own bowls! The children are keen to learn and teaching is in English from age 7 . However the style of teaching is rather didactic with little questioning by students. Gillian and Sarah stayed with local families who were very hospitable though they found the food and sanitary arrangements problematic. Unfortunately, few students proceed to high school due to expense.  However, they were pleased to see the new classroom built in part through contributions from Croesgoch . There is clearly a long way to go before students in this landlocked small country can be offered similar opportunities for learning that our children enjoy - and sometimes disregard .

Vanessa Walker gave the vote of thanks for a thought-provoking account of an unusual experience.

The meeting closed with the final toast by Richard Sheen.

John Ratcliffe 20/11/15