THE Rotary Club of Kingston increased the number of community outreach projects it executed during the past administrative year, amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Among the major projects completed between July 2020 and April 2021 were the donation of life-saving equipment valued at $21 million to Bustamante Hospital for Children; provision of homes and food for the homeless; water tanks to an early childhood institution; and gallons of sanitising and hygiene products to a golden age home.

In March this year the club handed over the keys to a two-bedroom, one-bathroom house with kitchen, small porch, water and septic tanks and solar lights in Salisbury Park to Margaret Ritchie, her daughter and grandchildren, who were homeless. The donation was made in partnership with the Rotary Club of White Bear Lake Minnesota, USA, and Food For the Poor.

According to the Rotary Club of Kingston’s Project Manager Condell Stephenson: “It was a delight to see the smiles on the faces of the new owners, who received the second home in the club’s Home for the Homeless Project for 2020-2021.”

Speaking on behalf of the club, Alva Wood, president for administrative year 2020 to 2021, said: “It is a fulfilling feeling knowing that our club was able to assist another vulnerable and needy family to get dignity by owning a proper shelter with some of the basic necessities such as water and sanitation.”

During the past administrative year the Rotary Club of Kingston installed two 1,000-gallon water tanks, together with pressure pump at Laura’s Basic School in Duhaney Park. The tanks will provide clean water to 142 students and 14 members of staff. The donations were made in collaboration with the Port Authority of Jamaica, C&WJ Cooperative Credit Union and the Rotary Club of Temecula, California.

Principal of Laura’s Basic School, Edith Chapline expressed gratitude.

“Words cannot express how grateful and proud we are to be recipients of this well-needed gift, as well as the technical advice and support we continue to receive,” she said.

In response, Stephenson said: “It is gratifying to know that the school’s water woes will now be a thing of the past as we provide ‘Service Above Self’.”

With the support of Unicomer Jamaica Limited (Courts Jamaica), the Rotary Club of Kingston also presented a washing machine and microwave oven to St Monica’s Home for the Abandoned Elderly in White Marl, St Catherine, in April, 2020.

According to Nurse Hermine Bascoe, the equipment will make the work of the ancilliary staff lighter. She also pointed to a recent donation from the Rotary Club of Kingston of 100 chicks to supply protein to the inmates of the home.

During the curfew, the Rotary Club of Kingston joined with Kingston & St Andrew Municipal Corporation in serving 300 hot meals together with sodas, water, snacks and masks to street people.

Other partners included the Rotary clubs of Kingston East & Port Royal as well as St Andrew and Trafalgar New Heights, and Assistant Governor of Rotary Marie Powell.

Jamaica Observer