Monday, 8 June 2020

Winter in the Time of Covid-19

Winter is upon us and we managed to get the 100 blankets, paid for with the proceeds of the Quiz Night, to their recipients just in time.
     We all know how harsh Johannesburg winter nights can be, even if you do have a proper roof over your head. If you don't, life can get very tough.
     In these times of coronavirus it can be even tougher than other years.
Lorna Lourens accepting blankets for the Woodside Sanctuary
     We started the rounds handing over the blankets at Woodside Sanctuary where Lorna Lourens, marketing and fundraising co-ordinator, accepted them on behalf of the home.
     Sanitisation protocols are very strict there to protect the patients and neither we nor the blankets were allowed inside the building. The blankets were taken in after being thoroughly cleaned.
The kids at Christ Church Christian Care Centre looking forward to a warm winter. Noel Bouwis, the education co-ordinator and Margaret Lediga, the supervisor joined in the fun
     Our next port of call was the Christ Church Christian Care Centre in Yeoville. For those who've not been, it is housed in the old Yeoville Hotel building on Louis Botha Ave, with the entrance at the rear of the building.
     There was great excitement when we arrived, probably because the children are getting tired of being cooped up.
     About 70 children live on the premises along with staff and social workers. The children range in age from toddlers to Matric.
Pastor Mike Sunker joined us for the handover of the blankets
     Pastor Mike Sunker, director of the home, said they're battling to get donations to keep the home running and there is always a shortage of supplies.
    The area around the home was teeming with people, very few of them practising any form of social distancing and definitely not everyone wearing masks.
Handing over blankets to Candice Harrison in Forest Town. Candice hurt herself jogging
     Our next stop was at the home of Candice Harrison in Forest Town. Candice is helping the homeless in the suburb and at the Pieter Roos Park with food parcels and other kinds of donations such as the blankets.
     She was a Rotary long-term exchange student in Canada and she and members of her host club, St Catherines in Ontario. Candice  will be joining us for the Zoom meeting on Wednesday evening.
Jankees and Judy Sligcher with supplies for Soweto
     Our final stop was at the home of Jankees and Judy Sligcher, who will take the blankets and supplies donated by members of the club, to the Rena Le Lona (We Are With You) Creative Centre for Children in Diepkloof, Soweto tomorrow.
     Rena Le Lona is a project of the Soweto Community Corps, with whom New Dawn is establishing a relationship with the aim of getting a Soweto Rotary club going again.
Jankees Sligcher and me wearing Rotary branded masks
     The meeting on Wednesday promises to be a busy one with overseas Rotarians joining in. President Judy Sligcher has convened the meeting specially to thank all the donors, both local and from overseas clubs, for contributing the the R150 000 that New Dawn has managed to give to the Alexander Education Committee over the past few months.
     Diarise: Remember, the meeting this week is an evening meeting and will start at 6pm sharp.
     Other Dates to Diarise: Discon 2000 is this coming  Saturday in the comfort of your living room. All you need to do is register as per the email sent from District and log onto Zoom on Saturday. For especially newer members, it's a great way to get to know your organisation better, meet some of the other people running it and this year it costs nothing.
     Saturday 4 Judy, 6 - 7.30: The induction of Ian Widdop as President of the Rotary Club of Johannesburg New Dawn for the year 2020-2021.
     And Finally: Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Carol Stier (foot) and Joan Donet (shoulder) from their operations. The club needs you both.
     A Thought for the Week: When I was a boy I was told that anybody could become President. I'm beginning to believe that. - Clarence Darrow (1857 - 1938)

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