This morning we had a joint meeting between our club and the Morningside Rotary Club of Johannesburg, South Africa.
We have a long and fruitful association with Morningside.
This morning the South Africans reported on two of their projects, and C-K Rotary reported on one of our projects.
Greta reminded us that the relationship of between Morningside and Cataraqui-Kingston goes back at least 10 years.  At one of her yearly visits to Cataraqui she pitched a project out that her club in South Africa was undertaking.  During the last year we have participated with Morningside in two other projects.  Morningside also hosted the Canadians during the friendship exchange, and we had a wonderful visit here with the South Africans.
We started with a round table introduction of all the members that were present today.  Jack then talked about the Sechaba project.  During COVID 19 many children were unable to pay school fees and the teachers lost their income.  Students were also instructed to stay away from the school, losing out on their only hot meal of the day.  The principal of the Oratile ECD (Early Childhood Development) centre, Abram Kgari, took the last of his own money and decided to start feeding the kids.  The Morningside Rotary Club took on the project, and working with the early care foundation raised the money to keep feeding the children and the teachers.  The Principal continued to manage the project.  The first priority was to raise 13,800 Rand per month to feed the children.  The second priority was supporting the caregivers at the school who lost their only source of income due to the pandemic.  The third priority was to support Abram in the feeding scheme. Over six months donations totalled 221,000 Rand.  This was split between the three priorities of the project.  The anchor group was a major donor with 35,000 Rand, and C-K Rotary donated over 25,000 Rand.  The project continued until the end of October although the principle still continues to provide meals when he can.  Abram has been awarded a Vocational Service Award for his work during this time.  Morningside Rotary has continued to support the project, and will pursue a grant from Rotary International.  Morningside is also going to pursue its relationship with the schools in the area to help get them registered to receive more assistance.  Many centres do not have the facilities needed and operate on an informal basis.
Check out more on this project at
Jack also spoke about the club’s blanket drive, which has been operating for several years.  Rotary clubs in the district participate in the blanket project as well.  A logistics company helps distribute the blankets to clubs from Johannesburg as far South as the cape of South Africa.  These blankets are then distributed to the the townships.  Over 500,000 Rand has been raised for this project.  This is a very popular project and the Rotary Club of Morningside is very proud of the work they have done.
Heather Nogrady then talked about our F.A.R. (Facilitator of Alumni Relations) project.  As this project has been presented at length during several meetings, we won’t go over all of the details here.  This project was initiated by our club and received a Global Grant from Rotary International and support from many clubs and individuals, including several clubs in India.  The FAR project was the first of 12 projects marking Rotary’s centennial in Kingston.
Heather spoke about the philosophy of the F.A.R. project. She spoke of the work of Pathways To Education Kingston, and how the F.A.R. project is an extension of the work that Pathways does in high schools.  Heather spoke of the challenges that the students of Pathways face in their everyday lives, and went on to explain how the FAR project supports these students as they transition to post secondary education.
In response to questions, and Michelle asked if Morningside had a particular time frame for their partnership with the Sechaba project.  Jack responded that they are partnering with other organizations to continue the project for the long term. This may include constructing kitchens and sanitary facilities in the centres.
President John thanked all who attended this morning, especially the Rotarians from South Africa.  John also held the door open for cooperation down the road on other projects between our two clubs.