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July 2005 - June 2006
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In this section are held items that appeared on the News page of the web site during David Morris's year as President, largely relating to club events and activities.

Index:


IT Project, RC Cebu Capitol North - LATEST NEWS - August 2005:

Eight village IT centres are now in full operation, with four more in various stages of being set up. The one in Sogod visited during our club visit at Easter 2004 is pictured above. John Dehnel visited a second project in Sudlon, high in the mountains of central Cebu, in May 2005, and together with Bernie and Acs handed over a batch of educational software. We also visited the training centre in Cebu where the young adults (approximately aged 18-25) who will run the centres about to be opened are taught not only computer skills but a wide range of general business skills, so that they can run the computer centres as financially self-supporting activities.

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A Walk on the Wild Side

On 24th September 2005 David Shepherd, the world-famous wildlife conservationist and artist, spoke about his life and experiences with large jungle animals, the RAF and the Royal Navy, and how it all came together in his current passion, the David Shepherd Wildlife Trust. The Trust raised over 5,500 from the sale of pictures, prints, memberships and other memorabilia, which together with the few hundred pounds raised from tickets and the raffle will all go to support endangered species worldwide.

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The Rotary Club of Melton Mowbray is pleased to have been able to support such a worthwhile cause. We thank the Loughborough Grammar School for supporting us in hosting this event.

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The two Rotary Clubs of Melton Mowbray held their first

POP POTENTIAL

contest in Melton on 29th September 2005. Modelled on the TV programme the X-factor, young pop singers from the area were invited to test their skills in front of a panel of Melton's pop music judges and an audience of 75 in the Sarson School.

What a great afternoon of pop music we had. 18 contestants entered, all hoping for the chance to make a professional recording of their music at Melton's Roar Recording Studios. The owner, Joe de Bie, had donated this as a first prize, to give the winner of Pop Potential their first step on the ladder to stardom. Joe was one of the three judges. Tony Rifugiato, the owner of Melton's music centre MelTone, and Lornette Ford, the vocal coach and professional singer joined Joe on the adjudication panel.

The 18 contestants each sang a song they had chosen, then "faced the music" as the three judges made comments about their performance. Without exception the judges were impressed with the abilities and with the courage of all 18 to put themselves forward for such an event. After much hard discussion 6 contestants were chosen for the final - it was to have been only five, but the choice was that hard.

All 6 then performed again, with much interest in the audience as to how much the contestants would have learned from the judges' comments after their first performances. The standard was again superb, and yet again the judges had a real problem to decide on a winner. After much debate, they chose the winner of Pop Potential - Melton Mowbray 2005 to be

Zoe Kirk

We look forward to this becoming an annual event - bring your friends next year!

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District Conference - Torquay

Members of the club with their partners attended the District 1070 conference in Torquay over the weekend of the 30th September to 2nd October 2005. There were many excellent presentations illustrating projects that Rotary is running and supporting:

The Melton club also ran a display over the weekend of our work in the Philippines, showing some of the health, education, and livelihood problems we are trying to help overcome, with some of the success stories alongside.

 
     
 

Editor's note: if anyone has any interesting, informative, or just plain embarrassing photos of the conference I'd be happy to add them to this story. John.

Next year's conference is in Eastbourne, from the 29 Sept to 1 Oct 2006. If any club members and partners wish to attend this conference please let Ben Abbott know as soon as possible.

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Progress in setting up a pilot Seaweed Project

Discussions about the potential seaweed project have begun in November 2005. David Collins attended the latest "seaweed congress" in the north of Bohol recently. The Rotary Club of Tagbilaran will host the next one, in Tagbilaran. The major practitioners of the seaweed industry in the Philippines have agreed to work with RC Tagbilaran supporting the pilot project we propose to fund there.

David's report:

"Baby and I went to the first ever Seaweed congress held up on the north end of the island. We made many good connections. We met Oscar A. Monzales , the Secretary General of the Seaweed Industry, of the Philippines. We are arranging for a first ever Rotary Sponsored Seaweed growing seminar to be held in Panglao . I will let you know how it goes.

Oscar said that the area which I was hoping to use is ideal for seaweed growing and offered to help us with the setting up of the cooperative for that purpose. As we indicated before, it is not expensive to set up.Under $500.00 USD will get us off the ground.

There are other depressed fishing villages on Panglao, and Bohol which could also benefit from seaweed farming. We will try Doljo first then evaluate the results. There are several other potential fishing villages along the coast to be considered. According to Oscar, the seaweed industry is well established on the north end of the island near Taliban, with good potential near Ubay.. This is good news, because we now have a club up there. RC Ubay was established during my term as President. We have a good team on the ground up there and they want to get going with a project.

I think that seaweed seminar and seedling materials would be a good project for the Ubay Club (down the road of course). As usual , I want to try one first, to find out the pluses and the pitfalls before spending more time and money."

The Bohol seaweed congress, November 2005

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Organ Donation

On 9th January 2006 the club heard a moving talk from Mike Bowden about organ donation. Mike urged all members to sign up to the NHS organ donor register, and to spread the message wherever possible.

Mike and his wife Veronica lost a son a few year ago whose life would have been prolonged, if not saved all together, had organs been available. This prompted them to do all they can to publicise and promote organ donation.

Should you wish to find out more or to sign up click on this link to see the NHS Organ Donor web site (in a new browser window).

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World Water Speed Record

The Melton Rotary Club's meeting on the 30th January 2006 was spellbound by the speaker for the evening, Nigel Macknight, who spoke about his ambition to recover the world water speed record for the UK. We heard of his childhood dreams, and how his focus and drive have led to a boat now being constructed at East Midlands Airport, with hopes to attempt the record in early 2007.

More information is available on the web site for the team: http://www.quicksilver-wsr.com/

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Visitors from Poland

The Melton Rotary Club's meeting on the 30th January 2006 also had the pleasure of the company of Anna Wieczorek, the incoming president of one of the Warsaw clubs, and her partner and child. She spoke about her club, the many projects they are involved in, and her hope to involve the Melton club in some of these, particularly in children's education in the poorer parts of Poland and the Ukraine.

A potential project between our two clubs was proposed early in the 2005-06 Rotary year, to assist in the redevelopment of Beslan. The status of this possibility is outlined in the attached Word document (use the usual club password to open it).

Anna's personal web site, with further information about her book publishing work is at: http://www.annawieczorek.pl/

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Charter Celebrations for the Rotary Club of Warsaw Sobieski

The Rotary Club of Warsaw Sobieski was chartered on 4th February 2006. The President of the Rotary Club of Melton Mowbray, accompanied by Rotarian Geoff Theobald and their wives, attended on behalf of the Melton Rotary Club, as part of the support from the Melton club for the founding of the Sobieski club.

The programme of the event was as follows:

Some photos from the evening are below:

 

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Hope and Homes for Children

At our club meeting on the 6th February 2006 we had a presentation from District International chairman, Chris Chew, on Hope and Homes for Children.

This is a charity which works with AIDS orphans in southern Africa, provides them with family homes, and works with children orphaned or abandoned by war. For more information please click here to see the Hope and Homes web site.

The Rotary Club of Melton Mowbray was pleased to present Chris with a cheque for 1,000 to support the appeal for funds which Rotary in Britain and Ireland will pass on to this worthwhile cause.

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Philippine Mud Slide

Appeal from District 3860 - January 2006

Leyte is an island about 250km x 50km, to the east of Cebu and Bohol. Guinsaugon, the devastated village, is on the south eastern corner of the island. Some of the rescue efforts are being directed from Cebu, the city we know so well, as the logistics are relatively easier from there and it is the major city in the region

It looks like about 1000 people will have perished, and innumerable other familes in the area will be missing husbands, wives, children and other loved ones.


22nd March 2006

Jun has e-mailed again to update us on the current situation in Leyte - which is not improving fast!

Dear John,

Despite all the publicity of donations pouring in, sadly they have not filtered down to the 3,000 evacuees in St. Bernard. It's now more than a month since the mudslide tragedy.

Gov Len is down in Southern Leyte with Rico right now to give money to the evacuees so they can have something to make up for their lost livelihood. Just talked to Gov Len a while ago and she says the 3,000 evacuees need cash for their food and daily needs. The government has done virtually nothing for them.

PE Rico Rentuza my club's incoming president who hails from the place is heading a medical mission to St. Bernard in Southern Leyte to attend to the health needs of the survivors.

An NGO called Project Athena named after the heroic municipal nurse who was doing her duty at the schoolhouse when the mountain collapsed on them, are looking after their daily needs, and they are short of cash.. The NGO is made up of professionals from St. Bernard working in Cebu with relatives in St. Bernard.

Gov Len is one heck of a Rotary governor. She drove her car all the way from Davao ( that's the southernmost point of Mindanao) with loads of goodies solicited from friends through the mountains and valleys of Central Mindanao, crossing the straights in Surigao by ferry to the southern tip of Leyte. Not only did she brave obstacles posed by nature- going through the Philippine version of Marlboro Country but she also went into no-mans land inhabited by Communist rebels, Muslim rebels and all sorts of bandits. For a lady, she's got more guts than most men. I hope Rico brought his videocam with him because that would be a great news item on local TV.

Thanks and regards JUN


22nd February 2006

A further e-mail from Jun, confirming the plans they have for helping to reconstruct the lives and livelihoods of those who have lost so many of their families:

Dear John,

11 villages have to be relocated. We are signing a letter of commitment with a housing NGO. They will take care of the shelter needs. We will focus on getting them started on farming and other livelihood so they can sustain themselves.

A schoolhouse and a hospital will have to be built.

My incoming president's aunt was an awardee of the outstanding Rural Nurse in the Region. A hero, she was leading the celebrations of Women's Month in the school house which had a day care center. She was doing a seminar for mothers on early child nutrition when the mountain fell on top of them. Her husband is a nuerosurgeon working in the Cebu City hospitals. We plan to have the hospital built in her memory and run by an NGO composed of doctors and medical professionals from Southern Leyte working in Cebu City.

Buried school was home to math wizards

First posted 02:09am (Mla time) Feb 20, 2006, by Volt Contreras, Inquirer

ST. BERNARD, Southern Leyte -- It was one of the town's best performing public schools, its pupils especially excelling in math competitions and academic exams. That was Guinsaugon Elementary School before it became a virtual tomb last Friday.

Three days after a massive landslide, the fate of pupils full of promise despite their poverty, and of teachers dedicated to their calling despite their meager pay, remained uncertain.

Earlier, rescuers retrieved the remains of Gloria Navos, the teacher-coach of the Grade III pupils that emerged as champions in last year's Math Challenge. She also mentored this year's team that won 3rd place in the same competition.

Team of wizards

Along with more than 50 bodies taken to a barangay hall now serving as a makeshift morgue, Navos was positively identified through her wedding ring, District Superintendent Erlinda Diaz said in an interview yesterday.

Presumed trapped in one of the four GES school buildings are Navos' 2006 team of Grade I math wizards, Aira Mae Solis, Jeffrey Coquilla and Marvin Berdon, according to Diaz, citing records of the annual contest among the 27 public elementary schools in St. Bernard. The Grade I pupils' victory was no fluke: Also this year, the GES teams from Grades II, III and V all placed 2nd in their respective categories, Diaz noted. The school has long built a sterling reputation with its classroom aces. Diaz said it ranked No. 2 in terms of the average scores posted by its pupils across all levels during the District Achievement Test last school year. If other major indicators are considered, like the Division and National tests, GES was ranked 3.5 overall that same year, she said. "It's never far behind when it comes to academics and teachers' performance," she said, noting that while Barangay Guinsaugon may be relatively poor compared to urban villages, she doesn't recall it having alarming cases of malnutrition or dropouts among its pupils.

'Idyllic spot'

The school official said GES pupils must have been "reviewing" for this year's division test scheduled on Feb. 24 covering the key subjects English, math, science and Makabayan when disaster struck. She believed the majority of the pupils finished with their morning recess and were inside their classrooms when portions of nearby Mt. Kan-Abag came tumbling down on the village at around 10:30 a.m. that fateful day. Official figures placed the number of GES students at 246. Diaz said the campus was already there, occupying its otherwise idyllic spot by a lush mountain, the day she first moved to St. Bernard in 1968. This means the villagers had never considered the school -- or their homes -- to be in a dangerous location, she noted. That was until Mt. Kan-Abag moved and bitterly snapped the winning streak of the school's fledgling math Olympians and budding topnotchers.


... and a second email, received from Jun Ferreros on 20th Feb:

Some geologists have also been warning the people in Southern Leyte about the fault lines in the area, particularly the people living in the town of St. Bernard. where the soil was said to be very rich, being of volcanic origin. There was a mild 2.0 earthquake preceding the slide.

Tonight hopes went very high when the radio reported that the Americans and the Taiwan rescue teams detected noises with their sophisticated sound devices where the school was buried. Unconfirmed reports say that there were 50 people that were alive underneath the 30 meters deep mud. The rescue is now focused on the school house. We are praying for some miracles. What they are recovering now are body parts.

The rains have not stopped. There is again a low pressure area that has been spotted in the vicinity of Leyte. Casualties included one British national who married a Filipina from Leyte and retired in St. Bernard. Cebu has a big migrant population of people from Southern Leyte . It is a major center for relief operations because the disaster area is closer to Cebu and more accessible by sea than Ormoc, its capital.

We are thankful for the help that the International community, particularly the US and Japan have been pouring in.


20th February 2006:

Following is a copy of an e-mail received from the District 3860 International / Foundation chairman, Jun Ferreros. District 3860 is the one which covers Cebu and Bohol. The District also covers the island of Leyte (to the north east of Cebu), where there are 5 Rotary Clubs.

Dear ......

My club's president elect, Rico Rentuza is from that town. His aunt is one of the teachers in the elementary school that was covered by the mountain and could not be found. He is in Leyte right now to do an assessment. He says that they have enough of the food, medicines, clothing, etc. and that it is the distribution system that is chaotic. What he would like us to do is to raise funds to focus on reconstruction and recovery for the surviviors and the evacuees from the 11 barangays in the future, particularly helping them get started with their livelihoods. That's also when media coverage and funds trickle to a halt as a result.

JUN

The following story is copied from Associated Press and the Yahoo web-site http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060219/ap_on_re_as/philippines_landslide_73

Philippine Rescue Teams Find More Bodies

GUINSAUGON, Philippines - Weary rescue teams recovered only bodies Sunday at a Philippine village engulfed by a landslide, fearful of sinking beneath the unstable mud and losing hope in the search for survivors.

No one has been found alive since Friday, when a mountain slope collapsed on the farming village of Guinsaugon. Nearly its entire population ? 1,857 ? was feared dead. Officials had said 57 survivors were pulled from the mud Friday, but on Sunday lowered the number to 20, without immediately providing an explanation. At least 72 bodies have been recovered ? including 14 on Sunday.

Volunteers with two sniffer dogs digging around an entombed elementary school found no signs that any of the 250-300 children and teachers inside were alive. The hunt for survivors focused on the school because of unconfirmed reports some inside had sent text messages to loved ones. Teams were also digging around the site of the village hall, where about 300 people had been attending a women's conference. "The dogs smelled something. We started to dig, but there was nothing," said Ian Degamo, a rescuer digging with another 14 volunteers and the two dogs from the Red Cross.

About 32 U.S. Marines in combat pants and shirts helped with the digging. They were from U.S. military ships carrying 1,000 Marines who arrived at Leyte island in eastern Philippines, diverted from planned joint exercises to help with recovery efforts. Another 30 Marines, based in Okinawa, Japan, were at the site to assess relief needs.

Communist rebels who are active on Leyte warned U.S. troops not to stray into insurgent zones, but assured they would not attack unless provoked. The New People's Army rebels have been waging a Marxist rebellion since the late 1960s. "The NPAs, if they would not be provoked, would not take steps against them, especially in this time of calamity," said rebel spokesman Gregorio Rosal.

In Guinsaugon, police dogs arrived in the sunshine Sunday after days of constant rain that raised fears of more landslides and hampered efforts to rescue any survivors. Still, low clouds and thin mist suggested that rain could return. Rescue workers had been warned to tread carefully or risk becoming casualties themselves as the uneasy mud settled, 30 feet deep in some areas. With entire families wiped out, officials were talking about a mass burial for unclaimed bodies. The situation was so delicate that a no-fly zone was established over the area out of concern that blasts of air from the helicopters' rotors could send the mud oozing again in Guinsaugon, about 400 miles southeast of the capital, Manila.

Philippine Lt. Col. Raul Farnacio said searchers were focusing on the elementary school, where 240 to 300 students and at least six teachers were caught in the avalanche of mud. Rescue workers shouted and banged on boulders with stones in hopes that survivors would hear. There was only silence.

"All the efforts of our government continue and will not stop while there is hope to find survivors," President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said. "The nation is grateful for the continued prayers and concern, help from our world allies. "Addressing residents' claims that illegal logging contributed to the tragedy, Arroyo said: "Let us link arms to preserve our environment and protect what remains of it for our next generation."

Survivors had trouble figuring out where houses once stood in the 100-acre stretch of mud. The area has been drenched by 27 inches of rain over the last two weeks.

A Taiwanese team of 32 rescue workers with heat-sensing equipment arrived to help, while in Geneva, the International Red Cross appealed for $1.5 million to buy temporary shelter materials and other emergency health and cooking items.

Many residents of the landslide area were evacuated last week because of the threat of landslides or flooding following heavy rains, but had started returning home when the days turned sunny.

In November 1991, about 6,000 people were killed on Leyte in floods and landslides triggered by a tropical storm. Another 133 people died in floods and mudslides there in December 2003.

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Young Musician 2006

The Melton Rotary Clubs' Young Musician of the Year Festival took place on the 4th February at the Melton Mowbray Baptist Church, Leicester Road. The audience was treated to a feast of good music across the age ranges, with all performers doing well.

Entrants each played two pieces of varied style, and of a length depending on their age group (Junior 4 minutes, Intermediate 6 minutes, and Senior 8 minutes). They were judged by expert adjudicator Aljich Jialich. The event finished with the announcement of the winners of the various sections, and the announcement that

Jessica Ibbotson is

Young Musician of the Year, Melton Mowbray, 2006

Winners and runners up will all be invited to take part in the Rotary District 1070 Young Musician Festival, with the semi-finals taking place on the 4th March (again at the Melton Baptist Church) and the final on the 7th May in the Melton Theatre.

The winners of the various sections of the Festival on the 4th February were as follows:

JUNIOR SOLO VOCAL (ages 6 to 10)

  1. Rebekkah North
  2. Olivia Platts

JUNIOR SOLO INSTRUMENTAL (ages 6 to 10)

  1. Oliver Dalby, Clarinet
  2. Joseph Steele, Violin

INTERMEDIATE SOLO VOCAL (ages 11 to 13)

  1. Stefan Gackowski
  2. Victoria Keep

INTERMEDIATE SOLO INSTRUMENTAL (ages 11 to 13)

  1. Sara Hall, Clarinet
  2. Ellie Slorach, Piano

SENIOR SOLO VOCAL (ages 14 to 17)

  1. Jessica Ibbotson
  2. Ria Turner

SENIOR SOLO INSTRUMENTAL (ages 14 to 17)

  1. Paul Mountford, Piano
  2. Steven Tinsley, Flute

JUNIOR ENSEMBLE (ages 6 to 10)

  1. Gaddesby School Recorder Trio - Oliver Dalby, Charlotte Davies & Joseph Steele

INTERMEDIATE ENSEMBLE (ages 11 to 13)

  1. Danielle Grange & Emily Fionda, Clarinets

SENIOR ENSEMBLE (ages 14 to 17)

  1. Erika Palmer, Gina Roy & Sara Hall, Clarinets

JUNIOR GROUP (ages 6 to 10)

  1. Rearsby School Band
  2. Gaddesby School Recorder Group

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Dick Turpin Trophy

On 23rd February 2006 we held the annual(-ish) small bore rifle shooting competition between the Rotary Clubs of Melton Mowbray and Rutland.

The Melton club narrowly (!) held onto the trophy. John Dehnel shot the highest score - but was closely contested by Phil Bendal, Joe Carrington, Jim Green, and Tony Lord with only 3 points separating these four. The detailed results are in the attached spreadsheet.

Many thanks to the Holwell Rifle Club for their excellent hospitality. Also to David Ward for his great organisation of the event.

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E-mail from Dave Collins on 20th April 06. See the e-mail from David Collins below:

Dear John, Good news

We received a check for P845,600.00 on Friday April 7,2006, which is approximately $16,500.00 USD. This check will be deposited in the new account opened at Metrobank Centro Tagbilaran #123-3-12336103-3

As in the past MG, we will be sending frequent reports, along with photos. We can send the reports to all participating clubs, if you wish or you can forward them, if that is your preference. Just send the e-mail addresses.

Our goal has not changed. We will deliver the final report one year from today, if not sooner. It is not too early to offer to travel to England to present the final report to the participating clubs, and hopefully have an opportunity to present at your District Conference in 2007 at the same time.

Can you tell us your plan to visit Bohol? As you know, you and your entourage are welcome to stay with us while you are here.

We will be organizing the seaweed farming Co-operative. after Easter We will be start immediately to implement portions of the Matching Grant.

We want to thank you, your club and the other clubs for having faith in our ability to deliver the project on time, and on budget..

We will be tracking expenses on Quicken, backed up by receipts. Progress reports as before, via e-mail.

Regards, Dave and Baby

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News article on Aquaboxes

The following article (courtesy of Geoff Beardsley) appeared in the Daily Mail, on Tuesday, April 25, 2006:

Thirst for giving the world safe drinking water

A hill overlooking Cromford, the Derbyshire village where, 200 years ago, Sir Richard Arkwright harnessed the water power of the River Derwent to change the way in which the world spun wool and cotton. The warehouse on the hill's crest is the property of a wholesale fruit and vegetable merchant. But his boxes and crates occupy only half the building. The rest is rented by a company called Aquabox.

On every -weekend morning several men, of an obviously professional appearance, labour in the warehouse yard. None of them is in the first flush of youth. Last Saturday, all the men were members of the Wirksworth Rotary Club. The Aquabox project - wholly dependent on the effort and energy of volunteers - is, in the words of the Club's mission statement, designed 'to promote humanitarian aid and safe drinking water wherever it is needed in the world'.

That hope is made reality by a scheme which Gordon McGlone - the managing director of a biscuit-making company and 'honorary general manager' of Aquabox - describes as 'absolutely simple, like all the best ideas'.

Plastic boxes, about the size of a baby's bath, are sent to 'emergency areas'. Each one contains a filter and enough purification tablets to make 1,000 litres of polluted water safe for human consumption - enough to provide a family of four with decent drinking water for five months. But that is only part of the ingenious basis of the Aquabox scheme. By the time the equipment arrives at its desperate destination, the boxes are packed with the essential items of everyday living that most of us take for granted, but much of the world lacks. Each Aquabox is sponsored - 50, including transport from and to the Cromford site. Sponsors are asked to fill the spaces above and around the purification equipment with items from what the Wirksworth Rotarians call 'the recommended packing list'. It includes 'buckets - strong plastic, rubber or canvas, safety pins, scissors, safety matches, candles and clothes-lines'. The accompanying instructions are efficiently specific. 'All boxes should be carefully filled to the lid. Agencies have advised against substantial quantities of clothing. Please use all the space.' All the boxes are checked on their return to the depot.

Last Saturday, one that was destined for Serbia lay open in the warehouse. It contained a dozen mugs, a baby's bottle and assorted knives and forks. On a nearby table, a cast-iron frying pan awaited transfer to another box. 'Too many of them,' said Gordon McGlone, 'and it becomes too heavy to carry.' Aquaboxes are loaded by hand. Pallets and fork-lift trucks could not fill every inch of space in the lorries. Down in the yard, they were being sealed ready for dispatch. Frank Lund (a retired chartered surveyor from Sheffield, who was the first 'general manager' of Aquabox) was pulling a trolley on which a dozen or so were loaded. Frank Lund is 87.

He attributes the success of Aquabox to the recruitment of volunteers who enjoy helping other people. It's that spirit that has enabled the organisers, during the 14 years of its existence, to send 65,000 Aquaboxes containing 65 Million litres of pure water and 2,000 tonnes of humanitarian aid to emergencies all over the world.

The Wirksworth Rotarians talk of emergencies rather than disasters. Suffering goes on - day after day, year after year -throughout the world. But it does not always catch the headlines. Pure water is needed in places that are never mentioned on the front pages of newspapers in the developed world. Of course, the demand is greatest at times of crisis. Aquabox has a normal annual income of 350,000 to 400,000. In the year of the tsunami, the figure rocketed to more than 2.5 million.

Martin Beresford, a retired building services manager, was at the Aquabox warehouse every day during the weeks that followed the devastation. So was Martin Cruttenden, before his retirement a sales director of British Coal and then an industrial consultant. It is because of men like them that the project goes from strength to strength. It now ships out Aqua30, a combination of Aquaboxes which provides 30,000 litres of water to meet the needs of a whole drought-ravaged village.

But the most spectacular feature of the operation is the modesty of the volunteers whose labour makes it work. They are all desperately anxious to emphasise that Rotary Clubs from all over the region lend a hand from time to time, and that two Wirksworth churches have organised the packing of two million loose tablets into the water-purifying sachets.

There is a strong feeling at Aquabox that it is more blessed to give than to receive. In 1864, in a field about ten miles away from the hill above Cromford, John Hanning Speke - the explorer who identified the true Source of the Nile - died in a mysterious shooting accident. He was one of the men who opened up - Africa to English trade and English ideas. Aquabox is doing more than meeting a desperate need. For morning after morning, week after week, the volunteers from the Wirksworth Rotary Club demonstrate that Englishmen still believe they have an obligation to the countries which were once the Empire.

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Visit to Ferndown Rotary Club

Four members of the Melton club visited Ferndown Rotary Club on the 3rd May 2006. Ferndown, just outside Bournemouth, is the club that John Bartholomew joined when he retired and left the Melton club. We had a fascinating speech from the firm that oversaw the redesign and rebuilding of Windsor Castle after the fire which devastated a large portion of the castle in 1992.

We took the opportunity to fly down to Bournemouth, helped by one of the Ferndown members Bill Field, who is a member of the Bournemouth Flying Club. He facilitated the reception at what is now a busy international airport. John Dehnel borrowed a plane from the Leicester Flying Club.

Together with Bob McCord, Marshall Pobjoy, and David Ward we flew initially to Oxford airport, where we stretched our legs with a leisurely walk along the nearby canal to a pleasant lunch outside a canal-side pub.

On the return flight we stopped at Wycombe Airpark, and joined 12 other members of our the club in a visit to see the HQ and work of Hearing Dogs for Deaf People- an RIBI charity for 2005-06. We arrived back at Leicester about 5pm - well in advance of those who'd had to drive up from High Wycombe!

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Presidential Citation

On 5th June 2006, Assistant District Governor Chris Knight presented David Morris with a citation from the President of Rotary International, in recognition of the outstanding achievements of the club during David's year as President of the club

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E-mail from Dave Collins on 6th June 06.

Dear John,

GOOD NEWS, The Dry toilet at Bantilino High School is nearing completion. We will be finishing this job shortly.. As soon as completed we will send more pictures.

Work on Windy Nook [one of the rural houses] is almost completed, but the owners have to do some finishing touches in order to call it a finished product.. They are however living in it.

We will be working on the kitchen in Doljo shortly.

Regards Dave and Baby

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What follows is an email from David Collins, of the RC of Tagbilaran, on 12th June 2006:

Thanks to a Matching Grant from Rotary Club of Melton Mowbray of U.K. another environmentally friendly, odorless, composting dry toilet has been completed. This is the fourth dry toilet block to be completed at Bohol schools and replacing out-houses.

Batonilao High School, is located in the mountains northeast of Tagbilaran. With over 400 students sanitation, and lack of safe drinking water has been a continuing health concern of the Principal. Just in time for the start of the new school year, Senior Scouts from Bantilinao High made short work of painting the new facilities.

The original:

Painting the new block:

Finished:

Inside:

Construction has begun on a first of its kind, rain water collection and filtration system. This system is also being constructed for Bantilinao High School. With an annual rain fall of over 60 inches per year, there will be more then enough safe drinking water for all students for the entire school year, once the project is completed.

Regards, Dave Collins.

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The toilet block at Batonilao school is now complete, and has been officially handed over to the school on the 21st June 2006.

Some pictures from the hand-over:

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Olde Time Music Hall

On 23rd June 2006 the club was delighted to present an evening of Olde Time Music Hall at the Melton Theatre. The star of the show was the superb entertainer Toni Stevens, who captivated our audience with a wonderful variety of songs and jokes.

Toni, a Rotarian (and currently President of her club, the Rotary Club of Morisset, New South Wales) was visiting the UK to see her family. She had emigrated to Australia 37 years ago and has become a highly successful star of stage and screen down under. She met one of our club members, John Dehnel, when he was visiting New South Wales a year or so ago, and this resulted in an invitation to Toni to assist in raising some funds for the Marie Curie Cancer Care charity.

John Hurton compered the evening, which opened with Rif's Jazz Band - Brian Humpherson on Piano, Dave Partridge on Bass, Don Blakeson on Trumpet, Tony Rifugiato on Drums, Judy Nichol on Tenor Sax, and Stuart Braithwaite on Trombone. The second half was started memorably by Kate Bale with "Songs From The Shows".

Well over 2,000 was presented to Marie Curie at the end of the evening, mainly money raised over the year by the Melton Mowbray Ladies in Rotary, but complemented by the several hundred pounds raised through ticket sales for the Music Hall, sales of CD's of Toni Steven's music, and generous donations by the audience as they left the theatre.

The Rotary Club and Marie Curie Cancer Care are very grateful to Toni for contributing her time to such an enjoyable evening's entertainment, which also will help to do so much good in the community.

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Hospital Equipment Donated to the Philippines

With the support of the Melton, Rutland and Harborough PCT, a container full of older hospital equipment surplus to needs following the opening of the new Melton Mowbray Hospital left Melton Mowbray on the 20th June, on route to the Philippines to re-equip a hospital destroyed by the horrendous mud slide in Leyte in February.

This equipment sent includes:

We also shipped 18 computers complete with screens, keyboards and so on, courtesy of Stapleford Park hotel, and about 35 kg of educational software, donated by club members, local businesses, and the King Edward VII School.

And to complete the load, we've sent 21 bicycles, for use by the mothers group supporting the UK sisters program in the North Reclamation Area. See Jun Ferreros' note below.

Thanks to Sasha and Tony Lord of PP Removals for collecting the equipment from the hospital, and for storing for it for several weeks. Thanks also to the K-line shipping company which has given us a substantial discount on the shipping; the Rotary club is paying the approximately 900 balance.

Some pictures of the loading:

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We've received the following e-mail from Jun Ferreros, the Philippines District International Chairman:

Hi John,

We intend to donate the hospital equipment to the rural health unit of St. Bernard in Southern Leyte, where the landslide occurred and where 3,000 evacuees are living under sub-human conditions. With your equipment we will be able to put up field hospitals at the evacuation centers. The rest will be going to the nearest hospital which is about an hour's drive from St. Bernard. Its only 2 hours by fastcraft and another 4 hours by land from Cebu.

Of the 22 survivors who were pulled out of the mud, 3 have already died for lack of proper medical attention. Small pox has broken out in the camps.

Despite all the publicity about millions of dollars worth of aid received, the evacuees are all asking where the aid went to. So far the local government has given out P 6 million worth of aid that went into shelters, medicine and food for the survivors and the evacuees- that's about P 22 (US$ 0.42) per capita per day since March 2006. Diet is rice and canned goods and noodles. Rice is rationed out at 10 kilos per family every 2 weeks.

The [Rotary] district has been sending out medical missions and humanitarian missions regularly. District Governor Len Magno was among the first Rotarians to visit the area, driving all the way from Davao. She's going there again this weekend. Attached are some pictures of our club's recent mission last May 20-22.

The bicycles will be very useful for the mothers group supporting the UK sisters program in the North Reclamation Area. We are conducting non-formal education and feeding programs to about 1,200 children in 10 locations throughout the Port Area and the slums in the reclamation area. Some of the bikes will be converted into tricycles for hauling people and goods in the area which are not part of the regular jeepney routes. This will provide some livelihood for the unemployed youth.

The educational software we intend to share with Bernie [at the Rotary Club of Cebu Capitol North] and the learning centers run by the sisters where we have set up hole in the wall computer centers for the out of school youth using the second hand computers we received from Japan. Do you have some educational software for early childhood education? [Yes we do - it's being sent].

Thanks and regards.

JUN

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