Sidcup Rotary Club
District 1120 RI Club No 19449
The role of the Community Service Committee within the Rotary Club of Sidcup is to be the link whereby the Club can engage with local residents. This is achieved by running or taking part in events which involve or provide a service to the local community.
Gardening boots were donned by club members to clear and replant a section of the Community Garden at Sidcup Place and a Sensory Garden was created for Marlborough School.
The Battle of Britain Concert held in October was promoted by the Club and the Community Service committee assisted in the running of this event. It is a regular feature of our calendar. The proceeds went to London’s Air Ambulance, Disaster Aid UK (a National Rotary Charity which supports disaster sufferers world-wide) and other Rotary Charities.
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Later in the month the Club sponsored tickets of a charity performance by John Lawson’s Circus at Ruxley Manor Garden Centre. This enabled the clients of various local centres dealing with disability and disadvantage to have an enjoyable afternoon out. Subsequently, in February this year, the Circus visited Ruxley Manor and again the disadvantaged in the borough were able to attend a further charity performance.
The Club also assists other charities and a good example of this is the Poppy Day collection for the Royal British Legion. The Community Service committee made the arrangements on behalf of the Club and together with our colleges from the Inner Wheel Club of Sidcup, nearly £5,000 was raised from collections held at the Morrisons and Tesco supermarkets.
At the beginning of December the annual Christmas collection got under way. This has been a feature of the Christmas season in Sidcup for many years with Father Christmas and his sleigh visiting many of the streets in the area. He was also present in the High Street assisting the Sidcup Town Team event and the money raised on those occasions and at numerous static collection points over the month amounted to nearly £13,000.
This money, donated by you the public, will be used to support local, national and international charities and the members of the Rotary Club of Sidcup are grateful to you for your continuing generosity. The Club is also indebted to our growing number of supporters and friends who give of their time to ensure the success of the event.
The year concluded with the Christmas Day lunch held at the Carlton Road Day Centre. The Rotary Club of Sidcup is a major sponsor of this event and it enables senior citizens, who would otherwise spend Christmas Day alone, to enjoy a Christmas Dinner and entertainment in the company of others. The 42 guests were joined by the Mayor of Bexley for what proved to be a very enjoyable time. Members of the Rotary Club of Sidcup assisted with the transport of the guests to and from the Carlton Centre and the Club applauds the efforts of the many other volunteers who give of their time on Christmas Day to make this lunch such a resounding success.
The annual Community Day Lunch was held on 8th March 2017 to honour the contribution made by the voluntary sector to the local community. Attending the lunch was the Mayor of Bexley, Cllr Eileen Pallen and members of charities and organisations who operate in the Borough of Bexley.
The representatives of the various organisations were thanked for their work by the President, Malcolm Greening and the Mayor, However, the highlight of the afternoon was the presentation of the Community and Vocational Service Award to John Arundel by President Malcolm.
Whilst maintaining a demanding job in marketing John has consistently devoted large chunks of his time to a number of charities and voluntary organisations.
Lark in the Park is a 16 day community festival which takes place during the summer holidays at Sidcup Place attracting thousands of people every year. It is hosted by New Generation Church, with the support of other local churches in the Sidcup area. Lark in the Park offers over 2 weeks of free community events and activities for all ages. The event is open to all and families are drawn to it from a wide area. It really is a free gift to the local community! However, the cost of running Lark in the Park is considerable – around £80,00 annually and though the local churches and individuals bear the major cost of this event, funds are also secured from local businesses and grant-making trusts. This is where John uses his expertise and attention. He tirelessly raises funds for the event by visiting local businesses and writing grant applications. And then when it starts, John, like all the 500+ volunteers, can be found giving his time freely for hours every day to make it happen. It is not simply local events that benefit from John’s generous time and effort. He promotes and raises money for The Dalitso Trust (which delivers sustainable projects in rural communities of Malawi) and has played a major part in the the success story of KangaWrap. The KangaWrap is an award-winning comfortable baby sling for mums & dads to bond with their baby on the move. Profits from the fair trade baby slings help fund maternity health training and care in the slums of Delhi and Kenya. John’s passion and skill in promoting and supporting such a variety of projects are benefitting people far and wide.
A few days later, on Thursday 23rd, Rotarians accompanied clients and carers from the Carlton Road Day Centre on a visit to Lullingstone Country Park. Walks along either the river or the surrounding park were planned but given the uncertainty of the weather there was some nervousness in the air as the walks commenced. However, all’s well that ends well and after a rather muddy stroll along the riverbank, the walkers returned to the Visitor Centre where lunch, followed by a cream tea was enjoyed by all. Luckily, the rain held off until everyone had departed for home.
Photo Derek Hope
The Mayor of Bxley Cllr Sybil Camsey at the opening of the sensory garden
Photo Derek Hope
Photo Derek Hope
John Arundel with The Mayor of Bexley Cllr Eileen Pallen and President Malcolm Greening