I am proud to be associated with Rotary International through my involvement with projects of The Rotary Club of Algoa Bay in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa. Recently Rotary initiated 3 days of free healthcare to communities across the country in their fantastic “Rotary Health Days” initiative. I covered all the social media PR & marketing for the Eastern Province, focusing on the sites in Port Elizabeth at the Nelson Mandela Bay stadium and in Uitenhage at the Volkswagen sponsored Love Life Youth Centre in Kwanobuhle.
Please see our awesome album of the Rotary Family Health Days here. I was so honoured to receive active support and involvement from the Rotary Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois, via their official instagram feed here and their Facebook page here. Rotary clubs are all over the world. They bring together leaders to exchange ideas and take action to help empower youth, enhance health, promote peace, and eradicate polio.
For more than 100 years, Rotarians have joined together from all continents, cultures, and occupations to take action in our communities and worldwide. Clubs are nonpolitical, nonreligious, and open to all cultures, races, and creeds.
Rotarians are volunteers with diverse perspectives and they’re committed to making lasting changes in communities globally. The goal of Rotary is to advance goodwill through improvement of health, education and alleviation of poverty. Thanks to my family’s involvement with them – my mother is the Assistant Governor of District 9370 – I’m never short of a community project to get involved with. See my photo gallery on giving back to various charities right here in Nelson Mandela Bay as well as in Cape Town. One such initiative was raising money to buy a bakkie (car) for the Ubomi Obutsha Community Centre in Kwazakhele township and handing out sweets and other goodies to their children. Ubomi is a community development project of Combined Christian Ministries to the Poor. Projects like these help me in my small way to make a difference. I believe in basic human rights and equality for all. I believe in empowering people through education and healthcare. I believe in nation-building and spreading love. Rotary helps me do this. Please support the Rotary Community on their official Facebook page or Instagram feed and see how you, too, can get involved in your city.
They are currently running a photo competition with using the hashtag “#rotaryhero” next to photos you upload online. I have entered a couple of the ones we took at our Health Days – one in particular spoke to my heart. It was a photo of a man named Samuel from New Brighton township here in Nelson Mandela Bay. He was in his shack listening to the radio when he heard an interview with ambassadors for the Health Days. They were leaders from the Rotary Club of San Rafael Harbour in San Francisco who had flown in especially to be part of the Health Days here. They were handing out prosthetic hands. Samuel happened to need one. He gathered up some coins, got in a taxi and made his way to the stadium where he received immediate attention and was fitted with a new hand. For the first time since 1982, he held a cup of coffee in his dominant hand. He was beaming from ear to ear and it brought tears to our eyes and to his. He was full of a hope and joy he hadn’t experienced in over 30 years, losing his hand during Apartheid.
Because of the collaborative effort of all Rotarians at the Nelson Mandela Bay stadium when he arrived (near closing time!) to work speedily and effectively to give him his hand, I nominate us for the #rotaryhero prize 🙂 Rotary is about teamwork, human rights, making a difference and – most importantly- giving people back their dignity and self-respect. Nelson Mandela believed in this too. Rotarians in Nelson Mandela Bay did just that every day during the 3 day initiative, culminating in this case on the last day. Because of it, we are all Rotary “heroes” in my eyes.
This photo encompasses it all. Please “like” our photo on Facebook here!