International Service Report
Lyn Muller
The International Service Committee began this year with a much-reduced budget compared to previous years, due to an inability to fundraise during the Covid pandemic. We have still tried to use these limited funds effectively for International projects helping some of the world’s poorest citizens.
Cambodian Children’s Trust (CCT) run by Australian Tara Winkler, helps keep Cambodian families together, and helps to educate vulnerable children, to break the cycle of intergenerational poverty. It advocates against the (unfortunately) thriving Orphanage Industry, which has detrimental effects on children’s development. Cambodia was hit by both Covid and extreme weather early in the year, and so we have supported CCT again this year to assist some of the poorest families.
Food plant solutions, a RAWCS project, was supported again this year. This is an innovative solution to end hunger, malnutrition and ensure food security that is sustainable, cost effective and proven to work. It identifies and grows the best local foods, which are highest in nutrients, to meet the nutritional needs of malnourished people throughout the world.
We supported the Myanmar crisis through a donation to Pandaw Clinics, a medical charity arm of Pandaw Travel Co, and the Rohingya children and families affected by the fire in Cox’s Bazar through UNICEF.
Friends of Nepal have their major projects in education to assist families in Nepal. This is a RAWCS supported program. This year thermometer guns were needed for schools, to enable them to reopen after the first wave of Covid. Now in May 2021 they have another larger wave of Covid, which is overwhelming their health system. We have donated to both of these projects through FONAI to the Rotary Club of Dilibazaar, Kathmandu.
Rotarians against Malaria is a RAWCS project that we have supported for some years. They have immediate relief programs including mosquito nets, clearance of mosquito breeding grounds, and supply of medication. There is also a malaria vaccine project in Griffith University on the Gold Coast supported by D9640. This year we supported the RAM project in the Pacific Islands, including the Solomon Islands.
For many years now the Rotary Club of Blackwood has been supporting Indonesian students through RAWCS projects. The money comes from Copperbox income. This year we gave $500 to project 37-2010-2011. This project supports the education of Indonesian students, and enables them to stay in their families, who could otherwise not afford to send them to school.
Thanks to our dedicated committee of Bob Sothman, Bob Lehmann, John Lewis, Bob Arnold and David Neil.
Lyn Muller
Director, International Service Committee