July 2011 - June 2012
In this section are held items that appeared on the News page of the web site during Pam Posnett's year as President, largely relating to club events and activities.
Warning Zone is the flagship project of Leicestershire & Rutland Crimebeat Ltd and was launched on 17th October 2006. Bringing together information and expertise from across the public and private sectors. WARNING ZONE combines vital messages in a single stimulating and memorable experience which helps to prepare youngsters aged 10 and 11 for increased independence and their transition into early adolescence.
Located on Frog Island in Leicester and open Monday to Friday, the core programme aims to foster an understanding of risk, consequence of actions, peer pressure and personal responsibility.
This is not wrapping children in cotton wool, rather presenting the plain and honest facts in a memorable and understandable way in order to encourage responsible behaviour and sound decision making while living full and active lives.
The Melton Belvoir Rotary Club has good contacts there and arranged a visit for their club on 18th June, inviting members of the Melton Rotary Club and the Melton Aurora Rotary Club. It was a truly inspiring visit, and the visitors could well see how a visit here would enhance the appreciation by year 6 children of risks in their everyday lives, through the use of the very lifelike scenes set up in the Warning Zone. All three clubs left with a determination to see how Rotary could support the Warning Zone's work for the children of Melton Mowbray.
For further information on the Warning Zone click here.
Our group flew out from Heathrow on Cathay Pacific. Unfortunately we were held up for 4½ hours, which gave us all a chance to relax over a pint!
Some of us managed to
11 hour flight even with the constant supply of refreshments on offer.
Breakfast was interesting. John, Joe, Eric and Kathryn chose the traditional, where as I was adventurous choosing the traditional Chinese fish congee. Congee is a glutinous rice soup rather like Polycell. Lots of flavour but an acquired taste and texture! Should have had traditional!
We had planned to have a 36 hour break in Hong Kong on the way to the Philippines to help get over any jet lag. We were met in HK by our Chinese guide Wong Wong and her daughter Michelle. Wong Wong is a business contact of another Melton Rotarian, Alison Blythe. Alison had planned to come with us until business commitments intervened. Wong Wong and her family were good enough to look after us superbly even so. Before starting our sight-seeing we had to store our luggage in the bus station. This took longer than we anticipated as we had no HK dollars and there were a number of Chinese students with the same idea! It all became quite fraught trying to close the locker doors.
Wong Wong took us to a city centre restaurant for lunch. Obviously a favourite lunch spot for locals. Wong Wong had already ordered an amazing meal consisting of at least 12 dishes. She was proud to show off Hong Kong hospitality and cuisine. "Eat! Eat!"
After lunch we took the bus to a fishermen's? village. Wong Wong had bought us Octopus cards, a bit like Oyster cards in London for the local transport, but these can also be used in some shops for small items including coffee and snacks. The local market sold fish products including dried swim bladders, lungs and whole dried fish. Although unfamiliar it did look appetising. We also tried sweet marzipan shortbread and peanut brittle. We walked through the village in the pouring rain.
The environment is changing and the fish is depleted. The village houses mostly the elderly. The young people go to the towns looking for work. A young shop keeper showed us around explaining the history of the village.
The entire time (no exaggeration) that we were in Hong Kong it rained - just more heavily at some times than others. We were soaked through - but this is Hong Kong! Humid and often wet.
We took the underground and bus to our hotel. The YMCA! Very spacious and well-appointed rooms.
We meet for dinner with Wong Wong, her husband Alex and daughter Michelle. Another banquet! We see HK nightlife. Shops and late night markets and tables with fortune tellers each with different props. We found our own way back after our meal and found something else along the way! A Rotary work of art.
Our hosts took us to a Chinese greasy spoon for breakfast. White collar and manual workers eat cheaply side by side before work. A jug of boiling water to sterilize the cutlery and a roll of toilet paper to wipe the bowls are provided. Breakfast consisted of oodles of noodles topped with fried eggs, luncheon meat and beef sandwiches, chicken wings and roast pork. All washed down with strong coffee with evap milk.
Our dining room was a large space under the market, with several kitchens and dining areas. Health and Safety! What Health and Safety?
The experience was novel but the food substantial and delicious.We took the ferry to HK Island. We planned to go to the top of the Peak but it was too misty and the rain was torrential. We managed the mid-level. We visited flower, bird and ornamental fish markets as well as IT shops. We took the MTR (underground) home but lost Kathryn when we came out of the station . We split up and started our search. On arriving back at the hotel we discovered she had been there all the time!
Eric met up with his cousin while the rest of us were taken to a fish restaurant for dinner. The sea food was in tanks outside and we chose what we wanted. It was then prepared and served at our table. Prawns, garlic steamed fish, razor clams with chili, lobster, some sort of gastropod, crab in egg sauce, fried fish, savoury rice and fish broth. Freshly cooked and full of flavour.
Eric has a crisis. He seems to have lost his wallet. After initial panic John settles his hotel bill and Eric cancels his cards. On the way to the airport he discovers his wallet and successfully cancels the cancellation of his cards. Phew! We say goodbye to HK.
We are met in Cebu in the Philippines. The journey to the beach resort and dive school in Boljoon is at times, heart stopping! We meet out hosts Stu and Antoinette. We have an amazing meal and settle down to a good night's sleep.
Antoinette's elderly relative helps us to get breakfast sorted at 5.30am ready for whale-shark watching.
Magnificent creatures to watch at such close quarters. Krill is used as bait to get them to the surface. John and Joe dive and John takes amazing underwater pictures. Suddenly the heavens opened and we got soaked racing for the shore.
We spent the afternoon relaxing around the pool and enjoying our surroundings.
Traveled to Balicasag Island on one of the local 'banca' boats - basically overgrown wooden outrigger canoes, where we went snorkeling and diving. There was quite a strong swell so after a quick dip some of us decided to stay on board and enjoy the relaxation. Eric, Joe john and Stu took to the deep. Disembarking on our return was a little soggy for some of us. Kathryn got very wet when she was tangled in some ropes and then dropped in the water. A lot of spluttering! A great day though.
All the above was in preparation for the following days of quite heavy involvement with Rotary clubs and projects around the islands in the central Philippines.
On road to Cebu by 8 o?clock. Heavy traffic but interesting ride. Check in at Waterfront Hotel. Amazing views from bedroom window.
Lunch meeting with RC Cebu West with Pres. Lenton. A Classification talk on insurance from a new member! Go compare! Invited to a Circumcision Service at the Catholic Church on Sunday. Think we may pass on that one!
While I head off the Reach Centre for children with autism, the rest of the team discuss medical supplies and equipment. John also speaks with Rotarian Maita about a recent container of supplies, what was received and how has it been distributed.
Pat's visit to the REACH centre is to follow up her professional speciality and see what help we may be able to provide. The REACH Centre is for children with autism, founded by Sandra Espina, the wife of a prominent Rotarian in Cebu. Sandra and her husband Yumi (Joseph) have a son, Zac, who has autism. Pat was struck by the limited space and resources, as well as the young inexperienced staff.
"I observed an hour long lesson with Lilybel counting drawn pictures on
sheet of paper. Lilybel was 17 and could read. The teacher was a nurse.
carer sat and had no input throughout. I suggested to Sandra that
things in the room could be used as an aid to counting and
Lilybel could be tested by asking, "Bring me 6 stones from the box". I also suggested the carer could be making resources or participating in a game like Snakes and Ladders. As she was not a volunteer but was being paid! Sandra felt these were good ideas and started a list. There is so much to be done. I felt there was a lack of fun - the staff not the students and the young professionals seemed to follow rigid rules of working and behaviour. There is no doubt that they care and are working under extreme conditions.
"The education is one to one therapy with a range of professionals including nurses, occupational therapists, psychologists and one or two teachers.
"Yumi built this climbing frame as the children had nothing to do during break times. It was suggested that a small piece of land could be used for a vegetable patch or a sensory garden. He began to plan immediately where he could put the shed!"
Meanwhile John's team
track down medical equipment that had already been sent out to the
Not sure where some of it was although by the end of the visit it had
After we met up we went to a lunch meeting with Cebu Metro. The club put in their bid for Global Grant funding for a major sustainable project. Dengue Fever is a big issue here. We were also presented with an LED clockwork lamp designed by one of the members, but felt it looked too much like a bomb to risk trying to bring it back on the plane.
After lunch we visited a Women's Refuge Centre who need funding to support the women who have no education or skills and find themselves in abusive situations with little help. The refuge was started by a lawyer who defended woman, won her case and was later shot dead outside her office. The centre provides legal aid, a six bed apartment for them to stay short term and IT and work skills so they can support themselves. They also provide mentoring. We were given wallets made from recycled paper and plastic. The women sell these. They were extremely well made.
We explored Cebu on foot, visiting the Santo Nuncio Cathedral and a Taoist Temple.
We later took the boat to Siquijor, were we spent the rest of the day exploring the beautiful Coco Grove Resort. An island paradise.
We visited the hospital where only doctors are allowed to deliver babies. They are paid the equivalent of £500 but can do private work. This is not a reality as most people cannot afford private medical care. Pay is regulated across the Philippines. Lots of medical staff seek jobs in the cities or abroad and this causes problems for the smaller hospitals. Also the equipment they have to use in the hospital is outdated and often broken with no hope of repair.
Mother and baby can stay overnight after the birth. The hammock between the beds is for the baby to sleep in.
We were taken to visit the Mayor who was seemed very political and wanted us to be aware that he was in control! He stated that didn't need money and became very defensive when the infrastructure was mentioned.
We had a meeting at the hotel with Dave Lear, president of the Siquijor Rotary Club and his fellow Rotarians. There I met Josie who was a local elementary teacher. We visited her school and again it was the same problems, lack of space, trained teachers and resources. However, Josie's campus had residential facilities for in-service training.
The boys went diving and Kathryn and Pat had a lazy day on the beach discussing what they had observed and putting the world to rights, followed by a lazy lunch on the beach. That night we all had a party on the beach with more roast pig - two in fact.
The hotel cultural concert was amazing, showing us the culture through dance and song. The north of the Philippines seems more Spanish and the south leans towards the east.
We caught an early boat to Bohol. There was welcome party waiting for us from Tagbilaran Club.
The lunch was not a scheduled Club meeting as it was Sunday but many members turned up regardless. They all enjoyed joke telling and community singing.
Again we were invited to attend a circumcision service!
We visited a hospital to check whether equipment that had been sent out had arrived safely and was being used. Kathryn found there were some problems with using ultrasound equipment and two ultrasound probes had gone missing, worth £10,000 each! Later found (we believe) elsewhere on the island. We took steps to retrieve them.
We traveled up to
Grace Ocampo. John had a discussion with her about the missing
The meal was a potluck meal! Everyone brought a dish, and we were royally entertained. Someone had baked a cake decorated specially for us.
This man is blind and sleeps outside the local health centre. They cook food for him. While we were there he was sitting curled up on a stool. He fell asleep and fell off the stool and lay motionless on the floor. Everyone rushed to help him. He has no home and cannot work. An illustration of some of the impacts of the lack of any organised social care in the country.
We visited a school campus where a water tank had been erected using new technology. Eric and John were not so sure how sustainable this solution may be. The children outside are pumping water from a well.
Our hotel that night was Monica's Midtown Inn. Basic but comfortable - apart from the rotating tap, sparking sockets and the fridge full of overheated drinks and melted chocolate!
John has some emails to send to try and track down the missing equipment.
Corned beef, scrambled egg and toast for breakfast accompanied by "3 in one coffee"! That's a packet containing coffee, dried milk powder and lots of sugar. The Philippines do have a problem with dental decay and high blood pressure due to the high levels of sugar and salt.
We traveled by boat to Leyte. We had an extra passenger on board - see picture!
The trip was 4 hours and very cosy. We are met in Leyte by Jane Arenata, the Mayor's Chief Tourist Officer.
We travel in the
to St Bernard where in 2006 there was a massive landslide which
wiped out a village killing all but 22 people. We saw sections of road
reinforced to safeguard future landslides.
Emelda Marcos has a scheme to encourage people to pay for a seedling, get a free t-shirt and get entered into a lottery. The first winner was her nephew!
We visited various Birthing Centres today to check on equipment. Blood pressure equipment donated by our club was very conspicuous. Possibly for our benefit?
Staff at the Gaum Clinic have tried hard to make a dilapidated building and poor facilities more endurable. Everywhere we went we saw projects which warranted Rotary funding. But there is only so much money. All projects need to be sustainable.
Travel from St Bernard to Mahaplag with Jane to visit the local attraction, the Agas-agas Bridge zip line. Pat (perhaps sensibly) declined but the rest of us cannot resist to half-mile "flight"!
We travel on to
with Rotarians Allan and Desiree. As we go through the village
house and garden decorated, we think for a wedding! It turns out to be
reception committee. They have spit roasted a pig and prepared a feast
traditional dishes, including lemon grass tea. Unfortunately a
torrential rainstorm starts and we have to escape inside.
I talk to Desiree's mother about education. She is a retired school teacher. John, Joe Eric and Kathryn go up the hill to visit the water project!
The mainstay of the forest economy is coconut harvesting. The word coconut is derived from the Spanish "cocos" which means grinning face. Every part of the coconut is used, so it is called "Tree of Life".
Down came the rain. Although not far it was all uphill. Everyone comes back very wet and muddy.
We return to Cebu by the late ferry
Pat had a morning meeting with Sandra Espina to discuss what help is needed at the Reach Centre. John and Eric go to buy medical supplies needed immediately by health centres we have visited, and Kathryn and Joe head off to track down the missing ultrasound machine and probes - successfully.
We meet up for lunch
back to the hotel and miss out on a planned visit to the
Bird Sanctuary. There is a lot to discuss over lunch and everyone is
We do go on a local sightseeing trip to visit the memorial to Lapu Lapu who killed Magellan after he tried to invade the Philippines. A few years after his death Spain succeeded and the country was ruled by them until its control waned in the mid-19th century.
Later we are collected by Rotarian Lenton and taken to a Chinese restaurant to meet up with other Rotarians for a Chinese banquet. We were presented with a full size pull out banners complete with stands that they had copied from our bannerettes.
Up at 4.00am for our flight to HK and home. We say goodbye to Cebu and the Philippines.
An amazing trip. A lot achieved but still more to do. An incredible mix of Rotary project work, leisure time in the tropical seas, fascinating culture, and so many wonderful people to meet - old friends and making new ones.
It was a humbling experience with memories which will remain with us for ever.
Will you be with us next time?
On Saturday (26th May 2012) several members form the Melton Rotary Club had an fun evening at our "daughter club" Melton Aurora's Charter night and were one of the first to receive their new banner! As it was a South Pacific themed evening we were dressed accordingly. We were welcomed with a drink of fizz and neck garland and sat on a table named Tahiti. We dined royally on a buffet supper provided by Fig Catering and were entertained by David Morris, Asst DG Garner Roberts and friends singing "There ain't nothing like a dame" and a chorus from Aurora singing "I am going to wash that man right out of my hair". There followed dancing to a 40's disco with lessons for those of us needing help! which was enjoyed by all. They had a raffle and "Charity Auction for holidays" and the evening raised £2270 for their Romanian Charity and Club Funds.
Aurora and thank you to you all for a great evening and 1st year
birthday party for the record books!!
The Club had 5 swimmers involved in the recent Swimarathon, combining with the Aurora and Belvoir Clubs. Many other members were assisting with the District Semi-final of the Young Musician Competition. The whole event was organised by the Grantham Club, intending to break the World Record for numbers of swimmers swimming at exactly the same time, 12 noon to 1 p.m. GMT. The record was more than doubled with more than 5000 swimmers taking part.
The second object was to raise money for the Elimination of Polio. Again the event was very successful, with at least £50,000 being raised.See more at
Rotary Global Swimarathon 2012 - slide show Part 2
N.B Such was the enthusiasm and success of the project that it is intended to hold it again next year on February 23rd 2013 !!
Following their visit to Stapleford Park Country Hotel, where they had to rise to the challenge of working under the watchful eyes of head chef David Ellams, Lydia Swift of Long Field School and Tom Mallender of Belvoir High School took part in the Northern Rotary Young Chef District 1070 Final in Leicester, during January 2012.
With an age range of 11 to 17 the standard at the Final was extremely high and all competitors worked confidently to produce tasty and very professional three course meals.
Lydia?s meal, with a menu of curried parsnip and apple soup; filo pork with apricot stuffing and ratatouille and lime cheesecake cream on a biscuit base, won her the first place, a real achievement given that she was one of the youngest competitors.
Lydia will now represent Rotary District 1070 in the Regional Final to be held in Ilkeston on 24 March 2012.
|Lydia at work||The winning entry||Tom Mallender|
|Lydia and Tom||District Governor Linda May presenting trophy to Lydia||Our competitors|
The 9th Christmas Tree Festival was a community event with over 200 organisations, schools and businesses taking part. A total of 457 trees were on display for the 5 day festival which was visited by 6,500 paying adults and an equal number of children for whom admission was free.
The Parish Church feels that this is one of the greatest outreach events drawing so many from the town in participation and visitors.
The Rotary Club of Melton Mowbray were joined this year by the new Aurora Club and many other Rotarians took part with their companies submitting a decorated tree.
Com Voc Committee
|Paul Nyibek is a scholar, a human right advocate, and a community organizer with intense commitment to global politics and peace and security issues. This commitment stems from his personal story and background. He has seen first-hand the dire consequences of lack of security and peace growing up in South Sudan. Many people were fleeing their homes due to the violent conflict when the lives of a ferryman and family of three whose boat had capsized while crossing the river depended on his swift action. Audaciously, he rose to the challenge despite the fact that he was just a child. This incident shaped his life and accounted for his long-time fascination with politics and war and peace issues.|
'The prospect of Minor Sports glories in 2011/12 was brought crashing to the ground on Tuesday evening 29th November 2011, at the refurbished skittle alley of the Carington Arms in Ashby Folville. The little fancied Rutland team literally destroyed the odds-on favourites of Melton within the first two legs of the competition, Rutland now progress to the next round.
The evening was one of excellent fellowship, brilliant banter along with the usual nervous performances.
A further rubbing of salt into our wounds occurred when our own 'Killer Legend' John Horn failed to take the monies in the 'killer' finale losing to Sue from the Rutland team, allowing her to take the £2.30 spoils back to Rutland.
Fortunately the battle pains did not last long, summarised by the casual comment of: - ' I have known Sex last longer than this'.
The Melton team on paper looked outstanding, in experience second to none, in fitness a sight to behold, unbelievably focused, with a brilliant team spirit, what more could an 'interim Captain' have wished for before handing over to an 'interim, interim Captain?
Over two weeks in November 2011, Belvoir High School, Long Field School and John Ferneley College have taken part in the opening rounds of the Rotary Young Chef competition cooking and serving a healthy meal, suitable for two people, within the cost and time limits allowed.
the Rotary District Finals in Leicester on January 21st.
|On 28th August
Federation of Flying Rotarians met for the last of this year's Air
Commodore's lunches, this time at Fife airport on the
of Glenrothes town. Rotarians John Dehnel,
Goodwin flew up from
Melton Mowbray up to join
them, accompanied as in our previous flight by Chris Hall.
We met eight other Rotarians, including some from the Rotary
of Glenrothes -
not fliers, but the local club were kind enough to meet us for lunch.
One of their members took the afternoon to drive us up to the
conservation town of Falkland. The town has an impressive
castle and many well-preserved historic buildings around the town
square. An very enjoyable diversion which also gave us the
to see some of the Scottish countryside from ground
Our route up to Fife we went across the mountains of Derbyshire and Yorkshire, over to the Lake District (where we caught a glimpse of Scafell Pike - the scene of the second our our Three Peaks climbs last year), then on to Carlisle. At Carlisle we took a short stop to stretch our legs and swap around seats, then on to Fife. The flight back was in one leg. We were lucky enough to get permission to fly right over the centre of Edinburgh, and then set off to the coast at St. Abbes Head. From there our route took us down the coast to south of Sunderland, inland to York, thence to the Humber and the Trent, over TwinLakes and Melton, to our base at Leicester airfield.
We're all looking forward to next Spring for yet more IFFR expeditions.
the plane at Leicester||Leicester
|Warfedale||Morecambe Bay||Ribblehead viaduct||Ribblehead|
|Dentdale||Lake Windermere||Scafell Pike is in there somewhere!||Fife airport|
|The IFFR lunch||Falkland Palace||Falkland Palace||Checking the plane again|
|It needs painting again||Murrayfield||The Meadows||Bass Rock|
|Berwick-upon-Tweed||Seals at Holy Island||Holy Island||York|
|York||Belvoir Castle||TwinLakes||Melton Mowbray|
|Colwyn Bay and the Llandudno Peninsula||The Conway River||The Conway River||Llanfairfechan coast|
|Llanfairfechan coast||Approaching the Menai Strait||Approaching the Menai Strait||The Menai and Britannia Bridges|
|Chris at the controls||The Welsh Hills||Snowdon||The Pyg Track up to the summit|
|The other easy way up - the rail station||The IFFR crowd at lunch||The crew and the PA28 G-USSY|