Rotary celebrates milestone with more giving

COLLETTE DEVLIN
Last updated 05:00 30/04/2014
rotary
COLLETTE DEVLIN/FAIRFAX NZ
COMMUNITY SUPPORT: Rape and Abuse Support Centre Southland chair Roger Ngahooro, The Rotary Club of Invercargill president Mark Bain, Rotarian Tom Sawyer, who was the recipient of the Paul Harris Fellow award, and Coastguard Bluff vice-president Wayne Williams celebrate the club’s 90th birthday.

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It may have been The Rotary Club of Invercargill's 90th birthday but it was other community organisations who had reason to celebrate last night.

To mark its milestone The Rotary Club of Invercargill made significant donations to Coastguard Bluff and Rape and Abuse Support Centre Southland.

It donated $10,000 towards the purchase of a new fit for purpose-built Coastguard vessel.

The club had previously given $10,000 towards fundraising in June last year from the proceeds of its 2013 book sale.

Coastguard Bluff vice-president Wayne Williams said it was one of the biggest donations and the $20,000 had gone a long way to reaching their target of $1.2 million.

Rotary Club president Mark Bain said that last year Coastguard Bluff gave 2357 hours of voluntary service and rescued 33 people. "We think it is vital Coastguard Bluff volunteer crew has a boat that is safe and well equipped to rescue people in Foveaux Strait and in the waters around Stewart Island."

Rape and Abuse Support Centre Southland chairman Roger Ngahooro said the $10,000 donation, which came from the proceeds of the Southern Wild Food Festival, would be a nest egg for the organisation.

The huge gift would give the centre some financial breathing space and bring relief to the much stretched purse strings.

Meanwhile, Rotarian Tom Sawyer was the recipient of the Paul Harris Fellow award at the festivities last night. Named after Rotary's founder, Paul Harris, the award recognises the "service above self" contribution that the individual has made to their community and is one of the highest honours a Rotary Club can bestow.

Sawyer made a long and varied contribution to the community as a sailing mentor, advocate and educator for safe recreational boating, former Chamber of Commerce president, Rotarian and president of the Kumagaya Friendship Association, Bain said.

"Tom embodies the ideals of Rotary's motto, ‘service above self', through his generosity, enthusiasm and community involvement. He is always positive, always ready to lend a helping hand."

 

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- The Southland Times

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