Monday, 3 February 2020

Good Friends Keep New Dawn Going

Old friends are good friends at New Dawn and so it was proved when Bert Ettekoven and his wife, Marja van Leeuwen attended the meeting last week.
     Bert, an architect, was a member of New Dawn from June 2009 until June 2010.
     Both hail from Delft in the Netherlands and are members of clubs there.

Marja van Leeuwen, Judy and Jankees Sligcher and Bert Ettekoven
     Marja's club, the Rotary Club of Delft, donated 6000 Euros to New Dawn in 2016 when we helped Hotel Hope Ministries to buy a flatbed truck mainly to transport furniture from their factory to their charity shops in Melville.
     Bert reported that he and Marja had contacted Oliver Quambusch of Hotel Hope during their visit and had discussed further ways of helping him.
President Judy Sligcher welcoming Bert and Marja and the other guests
     PDG Jankees Sligcher told how he'd been standing in the queue at the Woolworths store in Hyde Park when he hear the couple in front of him in the queue speaking Dutch.
     When Marja noticed his Rotary pin she introduced herself and Bert and said that she was also a Rotarian in Delft.
     Jankees invited her and Bert to visit New Dawn, which they did, and Bert subsequently joined as a member. Unfortunately the funds for his project for social housing dried up and the project was terminated, after which the couple relocated back to the Netherlands.
President-elect Ian Widdop addressing the club 
     Bert is still part of a foundation that works in social housing and urban renewal in the Pretoria township of Mamelodi and works with three equity firms who support the underprivileged.
     Both are very good contacts for future Global Grant applications by the club and expressed keen interest to help.
     The couple last visited New Dawn six years ago and made sure they would be able to attend the meeting last Wednesday before flying home later in the evening.
Chibesa Chitangala of Zambia
     Another visitor last week was Chibesa Chitangala of Zambia, a member of the Rotary club of Chilanga in Zambia.
     He's in South Africa to support his brother, who had a heart attack and was recovering in the Milpark Hospital.
     Chibesa said their club, like New Dawn, was chartered in 2009. The club started with 36 members but dwindled to only 6 members before they started a process of renewal, which includes their hosting their Discon in May for Rotarians from four countries. They now stand at 19 members and are growing.
     He says their chief project at the moment is to rebuild a derelict school in the area.
Audrey Gatawa
     A return visitor was Audrey Gatawa, who works at Standard Bank and attended a number of meetings towards the end of last year.
     Audrey has already submitted her CV to the board and if all goes well, should be conducted in the coming's weeks.
     Audrey is involved in the Campaign for Financial Independence in Africa. Their aim is to have basic financial literacy and saving to be embedded in school curriculums all over Africa within the next ten years.
     Kenneth Kaunda, former Zambian president, is the honorary patron of the project.
Peter James-Smith, Ag to New Dawn and a former club president,
came to say hello to Bert and Marja
Kasthurie Singh
     Also at the meeting as a guest was Kasthurie Singh, a friend of Helene Bramwell, who also expressed interest in joining the club.
Ian Widdop reporting
     President-elect Ian Widdop, who championed the Global Grant process, addressed the club on the first annual report for the grant for The Link that was due by the end of January. Everything is on track and we could submit statements and narrative reports of just more than R100 000 spent on three new schools where The Link have established centres for their literacy and numeracy teaching.
     A Thought for the Week: Our character is what we do when we think no one is looking. - H. Jackson Browne, Jr. (1941 - )

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