Community Service

  

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.

Later in the month the Club sponsored tickets for 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 colleagues from the Inner Wheel Club of Sidcup, nearly £5,000 was raised from collections held at the Morrisons and Tesco supermarkets.

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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.

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The Annual Community Day Lunch was held on 14th March 2018 to honour the contribution made by the voluntary sector to the local community. Attending the lunch was the Mayor of Bexley, Cllr Peter Reader and the Mayoress Irene Reader 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, Peter Wilkes and the Mayor. The Community Award this year went to the Charity Shop in Hatherley Road, Sidcup and was received on behalf of the team by the chief executive of the Canterbury Oast Trust. The photograph shows some of the volunteers at the Sidcup Charity Shop in Hatherley Road with Joanne Creighton, Chief Executive of the Canterbury Oast Trust, receiving the Community Service Award from The Mayor of Bexley, Cll. Peter Reader and Peter Wilkes, president of the Rotary Club of Sidcup.

It was over 60 years ago when the Rotary Club of Sidcup, Queen Mary’s Hospital and the local community set up the ‘Friends of Queen Mary’s’. The new Friends Café was opened in 2017 after the Friends Refreshments Bar was closed as part of the major redevelopment of QMH and is now situated inside the main entrance to QMH. The Café also has a counter serving the Urgent Care Centre. The Friends also run a Trolley Service serving clinics and wards.

The Friends is supported by volunteers who work to generate profits which are then distributed in the form of discretionary awards for the benefit and well-being of patients, visitors and staff at Queen Mary’s Hospital. More than £3m has been awarded over the years. Without the considerable efforts of the volunteers these grants could not be made. The Friends need more volunteers. Can you help?

  

At the heart of the Friends are the Volunteers.  Without them there would be no Friends. The Friends need to look ahead to the challenges of a constantly changing hospital environment. Queen Mary’s Hospital is now secure for the foreseeable future with the services being offered expanding gradually. There is always a demand for more volunteers to develop and expand the facilities within the Hospital.

Do you like the idea of becoming a volunteer? Volunteering provides an excellent opportunity for you to meet people, utilise your existing skills or gain new ones. It will also give you a sense of personal satisfaction as you will be playing a part in keeping Queen Mary’s at the heart of the community.

Currently there are up to seventy volunteers; many are retired and wish to give back to the community. Whether you are working or retired, the Friends would love to hear from you and, of course, more volunteers are always needed, particularly at weekends, to fill in the gaps due to illness, holidays and family circumstances. There are also plans to open a Friends Kiosk on the second floor for the use of patients, and staff, attending the always busy outpatients’ clinics. There is always a need for more Volunteers. Even with the amount that we have, we simply cannot keep the Friends Café open all the time that patients attend the hospital. We would never have enough Volunteers to cover the Urgent Care Centre, which is open 24 hours a day.

If you can offer your services for a few hours per week, the Friends would very much like to hear from you.

Please email us at friendsofqmh@gmail.com or phone Mrs Linda Anslow on 07811 411700. Or you can write to her at:
Friends Shops Limited, Queen Mary’s Hospital, Frognal Avenue, Sidcup, DA14 6LT

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