No speaker scheduled for this meeting – allowed us to continue with club business. Attendance was 9.
Past President Gerald gave a brief report of a meeting he had attended with President Jim Kyle, convened by Ayrshire Governor Hazel McCully for all 9 clubs in the area. It was a well attended meeting and covered a variety of developments proposed for the future operation of the new local area. These included future finances, branding, membership recruitment, possible Ayrshire wide leaflet, support for the Dunaskin Heritage Railway, and a possible Christmas Ball. Members were also to be encouraged to continue support for Rotary Foundation.
Our members then discussed which charity should be the main beneficiary of our club’s fund raising events this year. There were 3 contenders proposed by 3 different Rotarians. After hearing brief reports on each charity, a vote was taken and the majority of support was for the Honeypot Children’s Charity at Dalleagles, which provides respite short breaks for young carers. The other 2 charities which were Lochlans Legacy and Whiteleys Retreat may still be supported with one off payments
The club raffle this time had 2 winners – Gerald and Dave.
Attendance 10 to hear our speaker, Carol Anne McMahon, manager of the Honeypot Children’s Charity, based at Dalleagles. The charity was set up in England in 1996 and has established respite centres in England, Wales and Scotland for young carers. Carol told us that there are 800,000 young carers aged 5-12 in the UK, 90,000 of them in Scotland. These are children who because of a parent or sibling requiring attention and support in the home with no one else in the family able to cope, have to take on the responsibility.
This puts an enormous pressure on the young carer, whose own needs may be ignored. The demands on their time and efforts may adversely affect their school work, their physical and mental health, and their social and emotional needs.
The charity offers a variety of short breaks (up to 4 or 5 days) in a staffed centre with other children in similar circumstances, with full catering, social and leisure activities, excursions, and comfortable living quarters and bedrooms.
Carol thanked the Rotary Club for our proposed financial support, and intimated that the Dalleagles Centre had a fund-raising Open Day planned for Friday 15 September. Some members indicated that they hoped to be able to be there.
Our club raffle tonight was won (again) by Dave who at first thought to decline the prize, but then decided to offer it to Carol’s Honeypot Charity.