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Road Town

Service Above Self

We meet Wednesdays at 6:00 PM
Moorings Mariner Inn Conference Room
Wickhams Cay II
Road Town, Tortola  VG1110
British Virgin Islands
District Site
Venue Map


On Saturday, 31st October, 2015, the Rotary Club of Road Town embarked on their greatest challenge yet:  Project 1BVI.

29 Rotarians,
10 Rotaractors,
17 Interactors,
10 Community business partners and
 6  Volunteers from the BVI Rugby Association

Joined together to tackle 10 projects in one day

Partnering with the Interact Club of Road Town, the Rotaract Clubs of Virgin Gorda and Tortola, and volunteers from Wet Rollerz Painting Company, Harneys, BDO, RTW, O’Neal Webster, and the Juvenile Alternative Sentencing Programme, a productive day of hard work and fun was had by all.  

Our island home never shone this bright!
See our Photo Library HERE.  Read about our projects below.


Project 1 BVI - East End Library

Painting and Cleanup of East End and Long Look Community Public Library
The interior and exterior of the library were completely repainted with a bright new colour scheme chosen in conjunction with the Chief Librarian and the Ministry of Education.
The paint was donated by Caribbean Colours.  Wet Rollerz painting company assisted in painting and supervising the volunteers. Ongoing assistance will include provision of replacement blinds.  
Rocking Music+ Good company+ Rewarding work = Weekend well spent.



Project 1BVI - Mount Healthy

Painting of benches at Mount Healthy National Park:
Rotarians and family members teamed up, to spruce up, the seating area at the Mount Healthy Historical Park.  
Former Rotaractor,Michael Kendall, who now owns a landscape maintenance company assisted with this project by trimming back the overgrown grass.  The result was a cool amd inviting, freshly painted well manicured relaxation spot for historians and picnickers alike.  
Small Project, Big Impact! 



Project 1BVI - Enis Adams Primary School

Painting at Enis Adams Primary School:
The Ministry of Education and Culture supplied the paint. We supplied the enthusiasm and manpower.  Two classrooms and 12 doors were painted. Several Interactors and a representative from O'Neal Webster worked alongside Rotarians. 
Enis Adams Primary is the Rotary Club of Road Town's adopted school where we also sponsor an Early Act Club.  Five years ago we donated new playground equipment and we continue to work with them on various needs and initiatives, including their Reading Theatre.


Project 1BVI - Food Drive Tortola

Food Drive at OneMart to benefit the Family Support Network:

The Rotaract Club of Tortola took charge of the food drive to benefit FSN and was assisted by Interactors. 
The team collected boxes of necessities and nonperishables which were all donated for families in need. #WeCareBVI



Project 1 BVI - Roundabout Cleanup

Clean-up of Central Roundabout in Road Town:

A team of Rotarians cleared out the garbage and weeds in the Road Town roundabout and trimmed the plants to ensure that this local landmark is looking its best.  #LoveMyBVI.


Project 1BVI - Ebenezer Thomas Primary School

Painting at Ebenezer Thomas Primary School:
Interactors, EarlyActors, teachers, and PTA members turned out in numbers at the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School to add some needed colour to the perimeter wall. 

Several High Schoolers also used this opportunity to partially fulfill their Community Service requirement.  

The result was an impressive finish job with curb appeal that even a primary schooler can appreciate.  #StudentsMakeAwesomePainters



Project 1BVI -Food Drive Virgin Gorda

Food Drive in Virgin Gorda to benefit the Family Support Network:
Spearheaded by the Rotaract Club of Virgin Gorda, ten boxes of food and four cases of water were collected.
All items were donated to the Family Support Network and will be given to families in need. 



Project 1BVI- Parking Lot Palms

Planting of palms at the new parking lot across from Peebles Hospital:
Working in collaboration with the Road Town City Manager, Rotarians and businesses donated and installed palm trees in several planters which cap off each row of parking.

Project 1BVI significantly improving the aesthetics of the area.  



Project 1BVI - Hovis House Maintenance

Maintenance Cleanup and Weeding at Hovis House:
The Hovis House is the home of an elderly citizen and a pet project of the Rotary Club of Road Town.  
As follow up to the repairs, gardening and new fencing previously completed on this home, the Club carried out further maintenance on the house and upkeep of the yard as a part of our Project 1BVI weekend assignment. 



Project 1BVI Music Room Upgrade

Stock Photo
Soundproofing Practice Room for After School Music Program in Huntums Ghut: 
The Soundproofing tiles to upgrade the music room for the afterschool programme were ordered but did not arrive in time for our Project 1BVI weekend.  This assignment will be completed later in November in conjunction with our Community Partner, Road Town Wholesale.


November is Rotary Foundation Month

Playground Equipment was Donated to Enis Adams Primary School via Foundation Funds

What is the Rotary Foundation?  
The Rotary Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation that supports and funds Rotary International’s humanitarian activities locally and globally.  It is funded entirely by voluntary contributions from Rotarians and private benefactors.     

The Foundation was created in 1917 by Rotary International's sixth president, Arch C. Klumph, and has since grown from an initial contribution of US$26.50 to more than US$1billion.  The Rotary Foundation has one of the largest and most prestigious international fellowship programs in the world. 

What Does the Foundation Do? 
The Foundation  leads the charge on worldwide Rotary campaigns.   Its mission is to enable Rotary members to advance world understanding, goodwill and peace through the improvement of health; the support of education; and the alleviation of poverty.   Two of its major programs are eradicating polio worldwide and promoting global peace.  

How Can I Contribute? 
Rotarians and benefactors can contribute to the Fund in a number of ways.  You can become a:

Rotary Foundation Sustaining Member  with a contribution of $100 or more each year to the Annual Fund.

Paul Harris Fellow  with a gift of $1,000 or more made to the Annual Fund, PolioPlus, or an approved Foundation grant. To recognize someone else as a Paul Harris Fellow, you can give that amount in their name. You are recognized as a Multiple Paul Harris Fellow with each additional gift of $1,000.
Paul Harris Society Member by giving an annual gift of $1,000 or more to the Annual Fund, PolioPlus, or an approved Foundation grant.
Benefactor  By making the Endowment Fund a beneficiary your estate plans (will or life insurance) or by donating $1,000 or more to the fund outright.  
Bequest Society Member by giving $10,000 or more via your estate plans (will or life insurance).  
Major Donor  With cumulative donations of $10,000 or more.
Arch Klumph Society Member by contributing $250,000 or more. 
Read about Foundation Projects undertaken by RCRT Here


Rotary Celebrates World Polio Day With Nigerian Association

Story and Photo by Virgin Islands News Online
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- As a result of steadfast efforts against polio over the past 15 years, Nigeria is to the point where it has been declared polio free, leaving just two countries, Pakistan and Afghanistan on the list of places where the disease is still present.

Nigeria's new polio free status came as a result of work pushed by not only the international health organisations but through partnerships from organisations such as Rotary International.

To mark this achievement by Nigeria, the Rotary Club of Road Town held a special meeting last evening October 24, 2015 at Fort Burt Hotel and had as special guests members of the Nigerian Association of the Virgin Islands.

Following a short presentation on the issue of polio by acting President of the Rotary Club of Road Town, Sonia M. Webster, there was a recorded video message by Dr Mansur Mustapha Dada of Nigeria, a healthcare professional who has worked on the frontlines in Africa battling infectious diseases, including the dreaded Ebola virus.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Poliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious viral disease, which mainly affects young children. The virus is said to be transmitted by person-to-person spread mainly through the faecal-oral route or, less frequently, by a common vehicle (e.g. contaminated water or food) and multiplies in the intestine, from where it can invade the nervous system and can cause paralysis.

WHO said that initial symptoms of polio include fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness in the neck, and pain in the limbs. In a small proportion of cases, the disease causes paralysis, which is often permanent. It warned that there is no cure for polio. “It can only be prevented by immunisation.”

Read full Article HERE.


Polio and Prevention


Polio is a crippling and potentially fatal infectious disease. There is no cure, but there are safe and effective vaccines. The strategy to eradicate polio is therefore based on preventing infection by immunizing every child until transmission stops and the world is polio-free.

The disease

Polio (poliomyelitis) is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus. It invades the nervous system and can cause irreversible paralysis in a matter of hours.

Who is at risk?

Polio can strike at any age, but it mainly affects children under five years old.


Polio is spread through person-to-person contact. When a child is infected with wild poliovirus, the virus enters the body through the mouth and multiplies in the intestine. It is then shed into the environment through the faeces where it can spread rapidly through a community, especially in situations of poor hygiene and sanitation. If a sufficient number of children are fully immunized against polio, the virus is unable to find susceptible children to infect, and dies out.

Young children who are not yet toilet-trained are a ready source of transmission, regardless of their environment. Polio can be spread when food or drink is contaminated by faeces. There is also evidence that flies can passively transfer poliovirus from faeces to food.

Most people infected with the poliovirus have no signs of illness and are never aware they have been infected. These symptomless people carry the virus in their intestines and can “silently” spread the infection to thousands of others before the first case of polio paralysis emerges.

For this reason, WHO considers a single confirmed case of polio paralysis to be evidence of an epidemic – particularly in countries where very few cases occur.

Read on to learn  more about Polio and Rotary's involvement



Why End Polio Now?


Why End Polio Now...

  • The Human Cost: If we don’t end polio now, experts say the disease could rebound to 10 million cases in the next 40 years.
  • It’s Achievable: There is no cure for polio, but the polio vaccine successfully prevents cases. Success in polio eradication sets the stage for the next big global health initiative.
  • It’s a Good Investment: The world has invested $9 billion dollars toward polio eradication and an independent study published in the medical journal Vaccine estimates the net economic benefits at US$40 to 50 billion over the next 20 years – a savings that can be put toward fighting other diseases.

The infrastructure for polio immunization also strengthens the systems for other health interventions.

Polio anywhere is a risk to children everywhere. The Global Polio Eradication Initiative is committed to fighting the disease until every child is safe.




Rotary Supports Disaster Response Training for Businesses

Article and Photos by BVI Department of Disaster Preparedness

The Department of Disaster Management is partnering with the Rotary Club of Road Town to offer Business Emergency Response Training (BERT) for local businesses.

The training is being conducted by the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) at the BVI Red Cross Headquarters and is designed to increase preparedness of the private sector. The training complements the Tropical Shipping sponsored Business Recovery Planning workshops which were held during the months of September and October. During this period, businesses were assisted in the development of plans and procedures to support continuity of operations in the event of any disruptions caused to their enterprises.

DDM’s Deputy Director, Mrs. Evangeline Inniss-Springer said the BERT program was designed specially to support business self-sufficiency through the development of teams that have the capability to respond to incidents that occur in the workplace or those that occur on a national scale.

Read More HERE


Forever Friends!  

Story and Photo by BVI Platinum News
The Rotary Family of the British Virgin Islands and the United States Virgin Islands celebrated their annual Friendship Day over the weekend. This year’s event was hosted by the Rotary Clubs of the BVI at the Lambert Beach Resort.

Approximately 70 persons from the Rotary Family visited from the islands of St. Croix, St. Thomas and St. John. A welcoming team of Rotarians from the Rotary Clubs of the BVI greeted and welcomed the visiting Rotary Family at the Terrence B. Lettsome International Airport, West End Ferry Terminal and the Road Town Ferry Dock.
Read full Story at BVI Platinum News: HERE



October is Economic and Community Development Month

Nearly 1.4 billion employed people live on less than $1.25 a day. Our members promote economic and community development and reduce poverty in underserved communities through training, well-paying jobs, and access to financial management institutions.
Projects range from providing people with equipment to vocational training. Our members work to strengthen local entrepreneurs and community leaders, particularly women, in impoverished communities.
Learn more from  Rotary International 



Rotary Launches Writing Competition

JOHNSON'S GHUT, Tortola, VI – Students of First Impressions Primary School have expressed high optimism about entering the Rotary Clubs of the Virgin Islands’ Butterfly Story Book competition as they desperately want to emulate what one of their colleagues did last year- win the competition.

The writing competition was launched earlier today September 29, 2015 at the First Impressions Primary School in Johnson's Ghut.

Acting Governor Delma Maduro, along with representatives from the three Rotary Clubs in the Virgin Islands; Rotary Club of Road Town- Ryan Geluk, Rotary Sunrise- Mrs Rosmary Flax and Rotary Club of Tortola- Ms Valarie Georges-Thomas and others, interacted with the students at the launch.

Giving a brief overview of the project, Mrs Maduro said this is the third year the territory is involved in the project and last year Marlie Hughes of First Impressions won the competition. Her winning story was entered in the Butterfly Story Book.

“This story book project was started here in the BVI two years ago together with the E-Club of the Caribbean and we have been very fortunate here in the BVI that we were able to produce four young authors over the years who had their stories published in this book,” said Mrs Maduro.

‘Giving something special to someone special’

The theme for this year’s competition is ‘Giving something special to someone special’.

While being engaged by President of the Rotary Club of Road Town Ryan Geluk, students threw out a number of ideas for their storyline, including doing something for a child who has a brain tumor, sharing gifts with the less fortunate, and making the dream of a less fortunate child come through. Some of the children even reflected on good deeds they would have done at some stage in their young lives.

Mrs Maduro told the student that, in addition to becoming ardent readers, they should adopt the habit of recording/documenting significant activities in their lives. “We can start writing by recording what has happened to us during the day, experiences during the day or memories…. Not just for the story book but you should get into the habit of recording things.”

According to Mrs Maduro, she and others were inspired to do same by teacher Jenny Wheatley.

All the schools throughout the territory are expected to participate in the storying writing competition. Deadline for submissions is November 13, 2015.

Students are required to get their parents’ permission and should fill out a student submission form in order to enter the competition. The stories have to be no less than 300 words and no more than 750 words, something the children of the First Impressions Primary School see as a walk in the park.

The students were implored not to make their stories long-winded and complicated but to stick to one concept and make it interesting to read.

With the competition now launched, the information will be fanned out among other schools across the territory.



Remember Me

By Richard Branson -- @richardbranson, 1 September 2015
Image from Virgin.com
This September is World Alzheimer’s Month, an international campaign to raise awareness and challenge stigma. The theme for this worthy cause this year is ‘Remember me’, to encourage people to learn to spot the signs of dementia, and not forget about loved ones living with the illness.
This reminded me of a note from my dear Uncle Charlie, who has been with his partner Barbara every step of the way as she has bravely battled Alzheimer’s. He was going through some old papers when he came across some beautiful words written in her handwriting.
Uncle Charlie didn’t know whether she had composed it herself or found it elsewhere, but it was obviously meant for him to discover. It turns out it is a poem by Owen Darnell that has brought solace to many, many people around the world who have experienced Alzheimer’s.
As Uncle Charlie wrote to me: “The verse itself tells the story of a person fighting the loneliest of battles that they cannot win. Had I known more about Alzheimer’s at the time Barbara wrote this verse, we may as a family have been far more supportive.” I can attest that Uncle Charlie has been incredibly supportive. Joan and I both had tears in our eyes as we continued to read his note.
“Acceptance comes so very hard, along with a sense of helplessness watching my best friend and soul mate for over half a century slowly drift away to a place without memories. But this isn’t about myself, there are many million like me who watch their loved ones fight this monster Alzheimer’s on a daily basis as everything they once were is taken from them.”
I had mentioned another friend whose wife was suffering from Alzheimer’s, and Uncle Charlie asked me to send on a copy of the verse. As well as that, I thought I would post it here, in the hope it brings some comfort to others too.
Do not ask me to remember,
or try to make me understand,
Let me rest and know you’re with me,
Kiss my cheek and hold my hand,
I’m confused beyond your concept,
I am sad and sick and lost,
All I know is that I need you to be with me at all cost,
Do not lose your patience with me,
Do not scold or shun my cry,
I can’t help the way I’m living,
Can’t be different though I try,
Just remember that I need you,
That the best of me is gone,
Please don’t fail to stand beside me,
Love me till my life is done.
The article above was published by Sir Richard Branson on virgin.com.  The Rotary Clubs of the BVI Alzheimer's Awareness Campaign obtained permission to re-publish as part of our recognition of World Alzheimer's Month.  We hope that you will share with us in our efforts to bring awareness to this debilitating disease, and share information on symptoms, early detection, and effective care and treatment.  
The beautiful poem above concludes Sir Branson's article.  There is so much to learn about Alzheimer's Disease.  Every four seconds someone in the world develops dementia. Head over to the http://www.alz.co.uk/world-alzheimers-month for more information on how to spot the signs of dementia and find out more.  You may also contact the BVI Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Campaign at: bvialzaware@gmail.com




The Rotary Club of Road Town is Rotary District 7020's August Club of the Month!!   Congratulations to the hard working team!!  Community Service has never been so much FUN!



September 21 is World Alzheimer's Day


Alzheimer's Request

Do not ask me to remember,

or try to make me understand,

Let me rest and know you’re with me,

Kiss my cheek and hold my hand.

I’m confused beyond your concept,

I am sad and sick and lost.

All I know is that I need you

To be with me at all cost.

Do not lose your patience with me,

Do not scold or curse or cry.

I can’t help the way I’m acting,

Can’t be different though I try.

Just remember that I need you,

That the best of me is gone,

Please don’t fail to stand beside me,

Love me ’til my life is done.

- Owen Darnell



Read To Your Kids 15 Minutes A Day

Parents are being encouraged to take 15 minutes of their time daily to read with their children. Mr. Ryan Geluk, President of the Rotary Club of Road Town made this call during a press conference on literacy hosted by the Rotary Club of Road Town at the Moorings Conference Room.

Geluk said though they recognize that the resources have changed and physical books have changed to e-books, Kindles, iPads and other electronic media, it doesn’t change the importance of literacy and the need to read.

"This is why we are working with the BVI Reading Council and Teacher Lynden to promote a program to encourage all children to read for fifteen minutes each day and all parents to read to their children for fifteen minutes per day. Fifteen minutes per day does not seem like a lot; however, reading aloud to your child is proven to be the single most important thing that you can do to help a child prepare for reading and learning," he said.

Geluk stated that in addition, it also builds quality time between parents and their child, something that is severely lacking in the society where television and video games have replaced books and reading.

"In fact, if we read to our children for 15 minutes each day for the first 5 years of their lives, this will equate to over 27 thousand minutes or over 450 hours of quality time."

Teacher Lynden Smith, Co-President of the BVI Reading Council during her remarks expressed her pleasure and passion to be a part of literacy in the Virgin Islands.

"My mother taught me how to read, but my father taught me to love reading," teacher Lynden stated. She also recalled that her father would read to all ten children in the evenings.

She presented the goal of "15 minutes reading, every parent, every child, every day", which is easily achieved via a bedtime story.

Teacher Lynden noted that if a child doesn't learn to read by Grade 3, they are very likely to drop out of school later.
The Rotary Club of Road Town has embarked on a number of projects surrounding literacy, including a new project which they have termed, ‘Word for Word’.

Further, each month, members of the Rotary Club of Road Town will be visiting the local library and community center in East End, where they will be reading aloud to the children there.

According to the club, it will continue to take an active role in the annual Spelling Bee competition within the primary and secondary schools.

Rotary Club of Road Town stated that it will also continue to support the Books for Babies program which is put on by Dawn Smith and others.

During the press conference, Health Literacy and Disaster Risk Reduction Literacy were also mentioned.



Giving The Gift of Literacy 

Photo: Grade 4 Students at the Althea Scatliffe Primary School show off their new dictionaries
The new school year brings with it excitement of new classes, new teachers, new classmates and, for grade four students around the territory, new dictionaries donated by the BVI family of Rotary. 
On Tuesday 15 September 2015, representatives of the BVI Family of Rotary visited the Althea Scatliffe Primary School to launch this year’s annual distribution of dictionaries to the young budding readers. 
Minister of Education and Culture Hon. Myron Walwyn expressed appreciation to the Rotary Clubs for their consistency in working with the territory’s youths. Speaking on the importance of community service, Hon Walwyn announced the Ministry’s upcoming initiative that will require primary school students to perform community service hours as a part of their school curriculum. 
In her response, Rotary’s Assistant District Governor, Delma Maduro noted that the Althea Scatliffe Primary School was already a few paces ahead in providing community service as it has its very own Rotary sponsored EarlyAct Club.
President Ryan Geluk of Rotary Club of Road Town also addressed the youngsters speaking of Rotary International's focus on literacy and local Rotary efforts over the years.
Also present at the launch were President Jeanette Scatliffe Boynes of Rotary Sunrise, Vice President Lynette Harrigan of the Rotary Club of Tortola and other members of the Rotary family.
At the end of the formalities, the eager young recipients filed on stage to accept their dictionaries and to graciously shake hands with the Minister and their Rotary benefactors/representatives. 

Each year the BVI family of Rotary distributes dictionaries to all grade four students territory wide as a part of its literacy promotion campaign.  Distributions are scheduled to take place at various schools throughout the Territory over the next two weeks.



Rotary Expands Local Literacy Initiatives 

Story by Lavina Liburd

Basic Education and Literacy is one of the key Rotary International Areas of Focus noted RCRT Past President Elvis Harrigan.  This year the Rotary Club of Road Town’s literacy initiatives go well beyond the annual Dictionary Distribution to class three/ grade four students in the territory. 
The Press Conference on Literacy hosted by the Rotary Club of Road Town, was held at the Moorings Conference Room at Wickham’s Cay II, yesterday September 15th.  The panel of presenters included Ryan Geluk, President of the Rotary Club of Road Town, Teacher Lynden Smith, Co-President of the BVI Reading Council, Lion’s Club District Governor Marvin Grant, Mrs. Carleen Parsons, Principal of the Enis Adams Primary School, and Ms. Evangeline Inniss-Springer from the Department of Disaster Management.
“The ability to read, write, and communicate connects people to one another and empowers them to achieve things they never thought possible.” President Ryan opened his presentation with a quote from Frederick Douglass, former slave and noted abolitionist who stated, “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” He went on to state that “literacy doesn’t only refer to the ability to read and write; we must also consider areas such as literacy in knowing what to do in case of disasters; literacy to recognize and understand the effects of diseases.”  These are of course, references to the education component of the Disaster Risk Reduction Program in which Rotary is partnering with DDM, and the clubs ongoing emphasis on Health education through its Annual Health Expo and now the Alzheimer's Awareness Campaign.  Also noted were Rotary’s participation in the Books for Babies program, reading to children at East End Public Library and Community Center, and new “Word for Word” program.