Club news - Rotary Clubs working together to get make a difference in communities, at home and abroad

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A member of the Kettering Huxloe Rotary Club has recently returned from Africa where he visited a Ghanaian school.

Paul Bertin visited the school in Agona Swedru, a small town about three hours drive from the Ghana’s capital, Accra.

Built in 1934 by the British Methodist church the school which serves 800 pupils on site with an age range of four-years-old to 14, still has a strong Christian tradition.

Lessons normally take place outside, under the trees, as it is a better learning environment than their crowded classrooms.

When it rains they go inside but the roof leaks in several places so it is not a lot better.

Paul is now intending to raise funds for the school in order to create two large work areas, plus some smaller offices/classrooms to provide both IT and science classes for the three schools in the town.

The building would be used over an extended school day to maximise its usage.

Additional teaching staff are provided by the national service scheme, in which graduates do one year’s work in the community - in this case science and IT graduates work in the school.

At present IT is taught from text books.

One of Paul’s colleagues, who worked in Northamptonshire for the NHS, has recently returned to his home in Ghana and has established a charity ‘Mpontu’ (which means progress) and has been contacting ex-pupils of the school, who now work in the USA, Canada and various European countries, to enlist their support for this work.

The first stage of the project is to clear the ground and build the structure which, combined with a floor, would create some waterproof work areas for the pupils.

This would be followed by putting in doors, windows and utilities with the third stage being to equip the building - the whole work will cost around £25,000.

Paul is certain that this is a project that a number of Rotary Clubs could work together over a number of years and have an end result of which all will be proud.

l On Sunday September 3, the Rotary Clubs of Kettering, Kettering Huxloe, Rushden, Rushden Chichele and Corby Phoenix held their Annual Dragon Boat Races on Wicksteed Park Lake.

Forty crews took part in the strenuous rowing event which was sponsored by numerous local businesses.

The event has raised almost £150,000 since it began with the proceeds going to The Lakelands and The Cransley Hospices and many other local charities.

Away from the races teams and visitors enjoyed barbecues, games and stalls - both commercial and charity.

It was a tremendous day promoting the image of Rotary as an organisation which serves the community and a wonderful example of a multi-club project.

The winners this year were The Amaraders very, very closely followed by The Rust Bucketers and Domino’s Effect, a mainly female crew.