Opinion

Good works by Rotarians — Parksville Qualicum Beach clubs have global origins

Opportunities for an education vary throughout the world, and the well-publicized courage of Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan has reinforced the need to provide schools for every child, girls and boys. In her speech on Malala Day at the UN, she urged everyone to wage a global struggle against illiteracy, poverty and terrorism.

Rotarians have made education a priority in projects all over the world, and a number of literacy programs in our own communities are supported by local Rotary clubs.

The Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach Sunrise is purchasing books for children at Qualicum Beach Elementary School and Rotarians will read with them to improve reading skills.

Rotarians in the Parksville AM Rotary Club will be acting as “reading buddies” with children at the Parksville Elementary School, and the Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach is working with the Vancouver island Regional Library to provide age appropriate literacy kits on different themes, such as “Amazing Machines” or “First Nations People”, for children who visit their local library.

One project, called Building Learning Together, is designed in partnership with the Vancouver Island Library to help adults cope with literacy associated with technology, and Rotary clubs in Qualicum Beach and Parksville are helping to fund this local community endeavour.

On the international scene, local clubs have given money for school supplies in Guatemala and in parts of South Africa. This year the Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach is helping to fund the education of a nursing student in Guatemala. Rotary clubs in Parksville and Qualicum Beach have for many years funded school supplies for children overseas, especially rebuilding schools after disasters.

Rotarians in our community have also supported local high school scholarship and vocational programs, and Rotary International offers the generous Ambassadorial Scholarship, which rivals the Rhodes scholarship program, for senior students to attend different world universities.

Rotary jottings: The Rotary club of Parksville AM has scheduled “A Taste of Oceanside” for March 29 at the Parksville Community Centre...The Rotary Club of Qualicum Beach will host the annual “Rotary Wine Festival” on April 5 at the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre.

This column about the works and events of Rotary clubs appears monthly in The NEWS. E-mail Norm Watts at:

mnwatts@shaw.ca

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