Home' Rotary Down Under : May 2014 (International) Contents www.rotarydownunder.org 15
Through the generosity of individuals,
Rotarians, their clubs and the business
community, ShelterBox Australia raised
in excess of $1 million for the Typhoon
Haiyan appeal. Thank you to all
When we started the typhoon appeal,
we gave it priority over an appeal already
running for the Syrian crisis. Because of
ongoing tragic issues there, ShelterBox
is shifting its focus back to Syria. There
is no sign of the Syrian crisis easing and
little prospect of early resolution.
In the past year, the number of people
who have fled starvation, fear and death
has more than trebled: United Nations
Refugee Agency (UNHCR) statistics
show that on March 9, 2013 there were
834,567 refugees. Six days ago there
ShelterBox has worked tirelessly to
get aid to thousands of refugees and
displaced families in the region. With a
long-term presence in four countries, the
charity is now focusing on two fronts – in
neighbouring Lebanon, and via a route
into Syria itself. Partnership and planning
have been key.
“ The Syrian crisis is complex and bloody
with no end in sight,” said ShelterBox
Response Team (SRT) member Toby Ash,
who was recently at a secret location
near war-torn Syria.
“But ShelterBox is able to make a
real difference on the ground. We have
developed strong partnerships with
those able to operate on our behalf in the
country, and through careful distribution
management and the increasing use of
technology, we are able to effectively
identify and reach the most desperate.”
As you know, ShelterBox provides
emergency shelter. We work with and
alongside many aid agencies. We all
need your continued support.
Please visit our website
with Bob Furner
Chairman ShelterBox Australia
www.rotar ydownunder.org 15
Rotary is lending its support to a new early
learning program in Victoria’s Glenelg Shire,
aiming to improve literacy rates in the region.
Glenelg helps local children
imagine a life of literacy
Glenelg Shire’s three Rotary clubs
have joined forces as part of an
historic fundraising campaign to
help boost funds for an innovative
early learning program, helping local
children discover the joy of reading.
Efforts are underway to expand
the Dolly Parton Imagination Library,
a partnership between United Way
Glenelg and Portland Aluminium.
To mark Rotary Literacy Month, the
Rotary clubs of Portland, Portland Bay
and Casterton came together for the
first time to fundraise for the program.
The program aims to target the
alarming trend of Glenelg Shire
students failing to complete Year
12, with the 2012 Australian Early
Development Index ranking children in the Glenelg Shire as some of the most
vulnerable in all of the Local Government Authorities in Victoria.
Launched to great acclaim last year, the Dolly Parton Imagination Library proved
an immediate hit. The initiative currently supports 300 children from across the
shire to receive a free book each month from birth until five years of age. However,
the overwhelming response to the program has meant that a freeze had to be
placed on processing new applications, pending further funding.
United Way Glenelg’s Executive Officer, Nicole Reefman, said the knowledge
and skills that local Rotarians possess will be invaluable in ensuring more
children in the community can access the program.
“Rotary International and local Rotary clubs know that literacy is an essential
ingredient for reducing poverty, improving health and encouraging community
and economic development,” Nicole said. “Given that 15.1 per cent of Glenelg
Shire children are identified as being developmentally vulnerable before
entering primary school, we want to ensure every child has this opportunity
and this is why we’re inviting our Rotary clubs to support the program.”
Portland Aluminium Production Manager Peter Chellis has welcomed the
assistance of Rotary.
“We are delighted to welcome our local Rotarians as they join us to ensure
even more children have access to the books and resources that will foster a
lifetime love of learning,” Peter said.
Glenelg Shire Council Mayor John Northcott said the program was an
investment in the future of children living in Glenelg Shire.
“Reading is the cornerstone to many opportunities we have in life. We want
to ensure our children are given the resources they need to develop not only
the skills needed for a good education, but an interest in it as well.”
Treasurer of the Rotary Club of Portland,
Vic, Frank Farnsworth, President of the
Rotary Club of Casterton, Vic, Sue Kilsby,
Executive Officer of United Way Glenelg
and Rotary Club of Portland member
Nicole Reefman and President of the
Rotary Club of Portland Bay Ann Dickenson
Links Archive April 2014 (International) June 2014 (International) Navigation Previous Page Next Page