Manila Rotaractors bring relief to storm-weary city
Victims of the typhoons in the Philippines line up to receive emergency aid. The Rotaract Club of Manila was recognized as this year's Outstanding Rotaract Project international winner during the 2010 Rotaract Preconvention Meeting for its effort to help victims. Photo courtesy of District 3770
After two powerful typhoons hit the Philippine capital of Manila in September, members of the Rotaract Club of Manila knew they wanted to do something to help their community bounce back.
Even though some of the Rotaractors were among those affected by the storms, which caused severe flooding and displaced thousands, the club collected canned goods, mobilized volunteers to work with relief agencies, and took part in two medical trips to assist residents relocated to evacuation shelters.
Rotary International recognized the club's Response and Relief effort as this year's Outstanding Rotaract Project international winner during the 2010 Rotaract Preconvention Meeting in Montréal, Québec, Canada, 18 June. In all, seven Rotaract club projects were singled out for honors.
"This is truly an honor for our club," said club president Tiffany Go. "This award adds more strength to the bond between our members, and fires up passion to continuously serve the people and the community. We know that our hard work has planted seeds and something good will bloom."
The club collected US$5,000 in canned goods and supplies, which were delivered to Cordillera, Laguna, and Pasig. In cooperation with the Rotary Club of Olds, Alberta, Canada, Rotaractors also brought in more than $2,500 in funds and equipment, a portion of which was used to help rebuild a library inside a daycare center for children evacuated from the hard-hit areas.
Manila Rotaractors also took part in two medical trips to assist people in evacuation shelters. They teamed up with volunteer doctors from the University of the Philippines during a visit to a shelter in Santa Ana, Taguig, and cooperated with the Rotary Club of Manila and Jancen Cosmetic Surgery to help evacuated residents of Pasig in the Philsports Arena. Two members of the Rotaract club are doctors and assisted with basic family care. Other members helped direct patients and volunteered in other capacities.
"Each of you is making the world a better place through your efforts," RI President John Kenny told the award recipients on 18 June. "It is my sincere wish that many of you will go on to be Rotarians in good time. But Rotary is already a part of you today, and so are you a part of Rotary."
The other outstanding Rotaract projects recognized during the awards ceremony were:
- African districts: Rotaract Club of Quatre Bornes, Mauritius, for Let's Change Their Future, providing bathing facilities and supplies, nutrition education, vitamin-rich foods, and school uniforms to 400 impoverished students at Serge Coutet Government School in Baie du Tombeau.
- Asia Pacific districts: Rotaract Club of Taipei Chung-Yuan, Taiwan, for Rotary Promises We Achieve, raising $10,000 for the global campaign to eradicate polio.
- European districts: Rotaract Club of Izmir-Göztepe, Turkey, for the Clean Sea project, raising awareness of the need for clean water and sanitation among 7,600 children in 47 primary schools in Izmir.
- Latin American districts: Rotaract clubs of Chilpancingo de los Bravo, Puebla Centro Histórico, Puebla de los Angeles, and Puebla Industrial, Mexico, for Centros Rotaract de Iniciación Technológica para Niños Indígenas (Rotaract Technology Centers for Indigenous Children), providing four computer labs and remodeling one school dormitory serving 300 indigenous youth in the state of Puebla.
- South Asian districts: Rotaract Club of Women's Christian College, India, for Stree Suraksha, creating awareness of domestic violence among the general public in Chennai.
- U.S., Canadian, and Caribbean districts: Rotaract Club of Florida's First Coast, Florida, USA, for the Black Tie and Blue Jeans Gala, raising $22,000 for a school serving children with special needs in Jacksonville.