Rotary Keeping Safe & Carrying On
Rotary's People of Action during the current Covid-19 pandemic
Let Us Know What's Going On In Your Club
We would like to hear from all Rotary South East clubs about what you are doing during this period of social distancing because of coronavirus.
- Please send us your stories and #PeopleOfAction photos for us to post and share with other clubs.
- What ideas do you have for keeping in touch with club members to offer support and tackle possible loneliness?
- How are you communicating with the public to maintain Rotary's public image?
Please send your stories, ideas and photos to the Rotary South East's Project Corona Team.
What's Going On Across Our District
Rotary Clubs in Rotary South East are actively involved in:
- Helping Our NHS and Care Workers
- Tackling Loneliness and Supporting People in Isolation
- Feeding Those In Need
- Using Zoom Meetings
Online Zoom meetings are beeing held for Rotarians from all over the district to meet online and discuss a range of topics.
The first Rotary ChatSpot was held on 24th June 2020 when Ruth Portway (Rochaester) and Janet Surgison (Tonbridge) gave short presentations on taking their clubs forward beyond the Covid-19 period.
The second topic will cover Rotary's 7th Area of Focus; Supporting the Environment. Chris Compton and Steve Hanks are making short presentations on this topic before Rotarians will have a chance to open up the discussion.
Rotary Radio UK
Brian Portway has recorded a series of two minute Rotary News Bulletins, which are going out at around twenty minutes to the hour every hour.
Steve Wood says, "Clubs may get ideas when they hear what other clubs are up to and their members might even like the music. There is very little about Covid-19 and we are delighted to learn the editors and writers of The Archers have adopted a similar policy!
Listen now to Rotary Radio UK
Using District Grants
- The Rotary Club of Gravesend has used a district grant to support poor families in Kenya.
- The Margate club are using their grant money for Oasis Domestic Abuse to provide a laptop for their remote working and to set up a live chat service.
Participating in a Global Grant
The Rotarry Club of Northfleet with Ebbsfleet Garden City, joined by Rotary District 1120, the Rotary Club of Visnagar ( and 7 other Rotary Clubs and a Rotaract Club all in District 3054 in Gujarat, India) received approval for a Global Grant within 10 days by The Rotary Foundation.
The Global Grant had a total budget of $69,000 for the provision of ventilators and related equipment for updating 7 hospitals providing COVID care ( target population 10.3 million ) .
The club plans to maintain contact with the Project Team by ZOOM and email for medical advice and support.
Holding An Online Auction
The Rotary Club of Uckfield has made donations to three local hospices. They are also looking at holding an online auction to rasie more funds to support the hospices.
A member of the Rotary Club of Rye and Winchelsea is using his business to sell face masks to the public with a share of the profits on sales going back to the club.
Supporting Other Groups
- Medway Sunlight Rotary Club members are working with St. Mary's Island Community Group and Salvation Army.
- Chestfield Rotary Club members are co-ordinating offers of volunteering help with the Parish Council.
- Orpington Crofton members are donating their "dinner money" to keep local charities afloat. A new transition project working has also been established together with the community to creat bags of interesting activities and goodies for 114 cancer patients in their homes being cared for by St. Christopher's Hospice.
- Chislehurst members have made a donation to a local hospital and have a Feeding the Nation project underway.
- Chislehurst Satellite are providing primary schools with support packages for children at home.
- Hastings members are working with Hastings Volunteering Action to form a central hub.
- Tenterden members are volunteering with the Tenterden Hub and are delivering food and medicines to vulnerable residents.
- Hailsham club members are supporting Hailsham Crisis Support and have given them a donation.
- Romney Marsh & Malling clubs have sent donations to Kent Bloodrunners.
- Faversham has given a cash sum to Kent MS Therapy Unit.
- Gillingham, Strood & Malling clubs have donated sums to local branches of the Salvation Army.
- Langley Park have donated a sums to Bromley & Croydon Women's Aid, Cardiac Risk in the Young, White Chaple Mission & Demelza Children's Hospice.
- Gravesend & Meopham's Kathy Melling has undergone a drastic haircut to raise funds for the Ellenor Foundation.
- Dover club members are volunteering for "Together4Dover Covid 19 Support Group", which is providing support for people who are in isolation and have no family or neighbours to help them.
- Tonbridge Rotary Club has donated £4,900 to local charities since the lockdown started with a focus on helping organisations affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, with donations ranging from £200 to £1,700.
- One Gravesend & Meopham member has had her head shaved as a fundraiser for the Ellenor Foundation.
Helping Club Members to create a My Rotary Account
Many Rotarians will wish to keep in touch with the Rotary World via the internet whilst confined to their homes. This will inevitably mean logging in to Rotary websites; Rotary International, RGBI, our district website and club websites. However, much of the member related information is within member-only pages, and for this you require a My Rotary login.
Support can be given to those unsure how to go about obtaining a My Rotary account. In the first instance, most people will find the "How To Create a My Rotary Account" PDF file of help.
Sending Funds To PolioPlus
With coronavirus at the front of our minds at the moment it may be easy to forget Rotary's 30-year fight to end polio around the world.
Did you know the same polio workers on the ground in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Nigeria and a host of other countries are also now being used to support the work of combatting the spead of coronavirus. Using the vast infrastructure developed to identify the poliovirus and deliver vaccination campaigns, the polio eradication program is pitching in to protect the vulnerable from COVID-19, especially in polio-endemic countries. From Pakistan to Nigeria, the program is drawing on years of experience fighting outbreaks to support governments as they respond to the new virus.
So a big thank you to all clubs who are continuing to send funds to Polioplus this year.
The Rotary Clubs of Kings Hill and Sittingbourne Invicta are carrying on with what Rotarians do best; supporting our communities. Both clubs are currently opening up their Community Chests for applications for funds from local small clubs and groups.
Faversham Carrying On
Faversham Rotary Club has just agreed to a donation of £500 to Serve Kent Bloodunnners. In addition, one of our (younger) members will be supporting the West Faversham Community Support hub in the delivery of essential food supplies to the vulnerable.
We are currently looking at support to the local food-bank and are providing small Easter gifts to the Cottage Hospital, Alms House and Care homes.
Rotary Whilst Exercising
Getting some exercise on a cycle had a different dimension for one Sittingbourne Invicta cyclist today (26 Mar). Whilst cycling 12 miles, taking in two local villages, the cyclist stopped outside the homes of 9 fellow club members and called them up on his mobile to check they were all OK.
Other Rotarians are using long walks for exercise as an opportunity of passing the homes of other members and checking they're OK from a distance. Keeping in touch with Rotarians, friends and neighbours is particulary important at this time to combat loneliness.
Covid Symptom Tracker App
Kings College London launched a new App on 24 March which tracks symptoms related to novel coronavirus (COVID-19), allowing anyone to self-report daily.
Rotarians are now downloading the Covid Symptom Tracker App and providing daily updates on their health. This will help researchers track both healthy and Covid-19 positive people. The information will help the researchers identify high risk areas, those people most at risk and how fast the virus is spreading in your area.
This research is led by Dr Tim Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London and director of TwinsUK a scientific study of 15,000 identical and non-identical twins, which has been running for nearly three decades.
To join in this study and links to the App please go to the Covid Symptom Tracker webpage.
Getting Club Officer Data for 2020/21 Updated
Clubs have been updating their club officer data for the next Rotary year in DMS following a request from RI. As of 25 March 2020 there are now 75 out of 77 2020/21 club presidents listed in DMS. However, there are only 53 Secretaries and 51 Tresurers listed. Now is the time for clubs to update DMS with the names of their next year's President, Secretary, Treasurer, Rotary Foundation Chairma and Membership Chairman.
Setting-up the Romney Marsh Support Hub
The Rotary Club of Romney Marsh has been involved in the setting up of the Romney Marsh Support Hub. The group includes a number of charities (C.A.R.M, Shepway Foodbanks, etc.) as well as local church leaders, Kent Police, FHDC, New Romney and Lydd council members, Rainbow Centre, doctors surgeries, community wardens, scout groups and others.
The aim of the Hub is to ensure that there is a consistent and factually correct message going out to the public and to avoid duplication of effort. Club members are of course very happy to be involved.
The club has also issued Coronavirus Update No. 1 dated 20th March 2020; a newsletter to keep all club members updated.
The Rotary Club of Canterbury is aware members are feeling isolated, bored, and stressed. One member came up with the idea of a series about hobbies - past and present. This will give members something to read and maybe inspire some. Members will also learn about each other and stay connected.
Joining E-Club Meetings
It was supposed to be a scatter week for the Rotary Club of Canterbury i.e. attending another club's meeting. Sadly, this was not possible because of the coronavirus crisis, so one member decided to "visit" an e-club instead.
Keeping Rotarians connected and carrying on.
Reaching Out To Other Clubs & Rotarians
The Rotary Club of Sittingbourne Invicta has known a Rotarian in India since 2005 when a joint project was undertaken. News and information about what is going on in the respective countries during the current covi19 pandemic is being shared.
Other clubs like Dover are reaching out to their Contact Clubs. Rotary The World Over.
Members of the Rotary Club of Maidstone Dawn Patrol have been taking regular exercise whilst maintaining social distancing during the Covid-19 outbreak.
Whilst out for a walk they have also been litter picking and carrying on caring for the local environment.
Using Social Media
Many clubs are continuing to reach out to other clubs, Rotarians and friends to maintain their networks.
Social media needs to be updated regularly to maintain your club's public image. Make sure your community know what volunteering activities your club is doing during the Covid-19 period.
Rotarians can reduce the possibility of loneliness by using their own social media platforms to reach out daily to their friends.
Updating Club Websites
The Rotary Club of Sittingbourne Invicta has created an "event highlight area" to announce that meetings are now online and events have been cancelled or postpones for the coming months due to coronavirus. This is banner at the very top of a club's RIBI template website - see invictarotary.org.
If you would like to put a similar banner on your club's website please contact the RSE web team.
Some Rotarians are issuing the neighbourhood card to homes in their community.