This committee aims to put into practice the Rotary international guiding principle: “the advancement of international understanding, goodwill and peace through a world fellowship of business and professional persons united in the ideal of service”.
Our theme over the past few years has been: ‘Helping people to help themselves’, and this has be reflected in our choice of projects and activities. In addition, we have supported some of the more locally based international charities. All this support comes from the charitable funds raised each year from which we are allocated a budget.
Projects which have been supported include:
When disaster strikes – earthquake, flood, famine – people are often stripped of whatever little resources they had to stay alive and healthy. Rotary has been a prime mover in the relief effort, particularly concentrating on the ‘rapid response’ niche. Each large, green ShelterBox is tailored to each individual disaster but typically contains an emergency relief tent for an extended family, blankets, water storage and filtration equipment, cooking utensils, a stove, a basic tool kit, a children’s activity pack and other vital items. The Rotary Club of Salisbury, in common with hundreds of other clubs, continues to support these initiatives.See: www.shelterbox.co.uk
Dentaid is one of the leading oral health charities in the world, having supported around 260 oral health programmes in 60 countries. In recent years, the charity has expanded its work from just supplying refurbished dental surgeries for charitable projects, to playing vital roles in oral health promotion. They are locally based in Landford. See: www.dentaid.org
Food Garden Project
South Africa A project being co-ordinated by Rtn Lloyd Whitfield of the Rotary Club of Constantia. It is an ongoing project to encourage self-sufficiency by providing families with food gardens. We will be helping to set it up for the families to use for years to come and it will include items such as a mini borehole, basic garden equipment, a shed for keeping the equipment in, a water pump, an electrical connection, initial compost/manure and similar. A Matching Grant has been provided by Rotary International.
Project Uganda is a locally based charity established in 2000 which operates a portfolio of projects in Rukungiri, Uganda ranging from the development of Gables Vocational Training Centre, the Health & Welfare Project and the Agricultural Project. See: www.projectuganda.org.uk/index
Literacy in a Box
The Literacy in a Box Trust has a key role of creating awareness and funding streams for the School Aid 4 Zambia programme, along with managing the logistics for sourcing and supplying this educational support to Zambian children. So far 15 schools in Zambia have received 229 boxes containing enough school supplies for over 5,000 children. Our primary aim remains to provide continuity of supply to the Zambian schools that have already received our boxes but as funds permit we will expand to other schools in Zambia. In April 2010 the Trust objectives were broadened to ‘advance education, primarily but not exclusively, in schools in Zambia and sub-Saharan Africa’ following which we have sent 66 boxes to the Philippines and 35 boxes to Zimbabwe. See:www.literacyboxtrust.org.uk/
Trade Aid Boxes
Individuals, families, and business are helped to become self-sufficient with the aid of custom-made Trade Aid Boxes. Each box contains specially selected supplies needed to provide people with a head start in recovering from a disaster, or other adversity, or to start working for themselves for the first time. Builders, carpenters, blacksmiths, tailor/seamstress, mechanics, teachers and handyman skills are covered. See: http://www.trade-aid.org/page/1/home/
Tools for Self Reliance
Tools for Self Reliance collects and refurbishes old tools, sewing machines and similar to provide practical help to people in poor communities in Africa who aspire to have a better life but lack the opportunity. They help skilled people to start up in business as carpenters, builders, mechanics, tailors and more, help existing small businesses to work smarter and help unskilled people get the skills they need to find work. See: http://www.tfsr.org/
The scheme supports the start-up costs of very small businesses in impoverished areas of the world. The loan has to be returned when the business is under way and the finance recycled as a loan to another small business. See:http://www.rotarianmicrocredit.org/
We have contingency funding earmarked to enable immediate and practical support to be provided to international disasters, such as the Pakistan Floods and the Japanese earthquake. On a smaller scale, we are geared to provide some help to young people who choose to spend their gap year engaged in community service work abroad.
In addition to the activities listed the International Committee sponsor:
International Dinner Night: A club dinner with a guest speaker on a topic of international interest.
St Germain en Laye exchange: The Rotary Clubs of Salisbury and St. Germain en Laye have been twinned since the early 1950s and an exchange trip has taken place every other year. In the recent past we have visited the Normandy battlefields,Compiegne, Chantilly and held a weekend in Oxford.