Although Paarl Rotarians have been unable to meet face to face since June, the club has been active behind the scenes, including at Kerith Retreat, where a vegetable garden is being developed, says president Hester Visagie.
"Since my induction as President of Paarl Rotary at the end of June, it has been unfortunate that we have not yet had the opportunity to see one another for our weekly meetings at the Paarl Bowls Club. As Covid prevailed, we continued with our meetings via zoom, which allowed us the opportunity to listen to the most amazing speakers, making each meeting worthwhile. Now that the third wave has waned, we are resuming our “live” meetings again at the bowling club and hope to see all our members there."
Wet cycle race
The Cyle Race Committee experienced a tough couple of months, not knowing whether the planned Winelands Cycle Race on 5 September (a seeding race for the Cape Town Cycle Tour) would in fact take place or not. They never let their guard down, and in spite of the late approval by the health authorities to allow the race, each committee member can be proud of an extremely successful day despite the very wet and cold weather experienced. Of the approximately 900 entrants, 504 turned up for the race which started in pouring rain, with approximately 400 crossing the finishing line (the rest having given up the battle along the way). My sincerely appreciation to each member who assisted to make it a memorable day, nevertheless. We are looking forward to our next cycle race to be held on 30 January next year, hopefully in much better weather. 
Wine Auction
Unfortunately, the wine auction that was planned for 10 October had to be cancelled owing to the current Covid situation but we hoping to have a live auction during the first half of 2022. 
The Projects Committee has been hard at work, with some of the highlights being:
Garden at Kerith Retreat
The vegetable garden at Kerith Retreat for mental health in Muldersvlei is “in the making”.  Reliance has donated compost while Kerith rented the digger loader to prepare the soil. The first lemon trees have been planted and more planning and hard work will continue on this major project. 
Donation from Wenhold Trust
We are extremely thankful and humbled by the donation of R100 000 received from the Wenhold Family Trust.  As per their request, R70 000 will be allocated to the Royalty Project empowering girls and R30 000 to nature conservation in the Paarl Mountain Reserve. A letter expressing our heartfelt thanks and appreciation has been sent to the Wenhold Family.
After receiving a donation of 1200 Eduboxes, the Committee has engaged with District to involve other clubs in our District to purchase boxes of educational toys at the cost of R100 each, as a fundraiser for our Club. Quite a number have been sold, including a consignment which has been sent to Luderitz. Should members know of any organisation involved in Early Childhood Development that might be in need of Eduboxes (as a donation) please contact Deon Erasmus on 082 552 3319. 
With our major fundraising function having been cancelled, our project funds have been under some strain.  After careful planning we were nevertheless privileged to financially support a number of worthy beneficiaries, which included RC Hillcrest and Agri-SA after the recent looting in KZN and Gauteng; Lingelihle Creche (water tank); House Andrey Murray (projector); Love Your Valley Blanket Drive; Masizane Soup Kitchen; Royalty Project; Kickboxing Academy; and Milani Day Care Centre for disabled children. Each of these organisations is adding value to our communities in their own special way.
  • Members will be volunteering as marshals at the Cape Town Cycle Race on 10 October and at the Cape Town Marathon on 17 October. Please confirm your availability with Eugene.
  • Please ensure that you download the Clubrunner app from your cell phone’s PlayStore for easy access to Rotarians’ phone numbers.
  • Our “food stall” caravan (see below) is for sale. Contact Eugene on 082 774 5720 for further details.