Thousands donated to good causes by Clitheroe Rotary

President Frank (right) presenting new president Sandy Morrison with the president's chain of office aboard a Blood Bike.
President Frank (right) presenting new president Sandy Morrison with the president's chain of office aboard a Blood Bike.
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Local charities received £10k from the outgoing president of Clitheroe Rotary Club during a recent presentation evening.

Outgoing president Frank Brown presented the funds to Life Education Lancashire, North West Blood Bikes, Ribble Valley Crossroads Care, Ribble Valley CRB, Art as Therapy, Pets as Therapy, Bowland, Pendle and Rossendale Mountain Rescue, Derian House Children's Hospice, Macmillan Nurses, Dance Syndrom, Ribble Valley Field Nurse Trust, Little Green Bus, East Lancs Hospice and the Rotary Foundation.

Frank with organisation representatives receiving their donations.

Frank with organisation representatives receiving their donations.

Other funds have been donated to charity during Frank's year as president from a total of £22,000 raised by Clitheroe Rotary.

Also during the meeting, Frank handed over the reins to new president Sandy Morrison, an Anglo-Scot who after many years travelling the world working for Unilever, settled into retirement in Clitheroe with his wife Heather.

At the inauguration ceremony Sandy gave thanks to the extremely positive welcoming atmosphere he encountered when he joined Clitheroe Rotary six years ago and said he is both honoured and proud to take up the challenge of being president in these times of change for all voluntary organisations.

Despite being one of the biggest Rotary Clubs in the North West of England, Sandy says that as president he will maintain a strong recruitment drive, successfully pursued for several years by many Rotarians and more recently by Bill Honeywell, to encourage younger community-spirited members in Ribble Valley to join Clitheroe Rotary.

For this to succeed the club will need to become more flexible in many ways and capture the enthusiasm of newer younger members for less formal meetings and flexibility on location and habits. Time will tell if these efforts will achieve the desired results.

Apart from the recruitment drive, Clitheroe Rotary also plan to maintain its strong support through Rotary International for the global eradication of polio.

In addition, the club hopes to undertake more projects to help the local community in Clitheroe and the Ribble Valley. Efforts to raise funds for a host of smaller local charities similar to the ones which received donations from outgoing president Frank Brown, will also continue.

The club has also historically been a strong supporter of emergency funding to global and regional disasters, including helping Whalley in December 2015 and thereafter through the Flood Action Group. The club has also helped a self-help project in Africa called Mary’s Meals, and projects undertaken in places like Nepal by sister clubs in the Rotary district.

Sandy will continue to support the club with this work but also support a new activity called “little sun” which since 2012 has focused on small cheap solar self-charging lights to allow many activities but specifically targeted at children’s learning during darkness in rural Africa. For every “little sun” people in the UK purchase at +/- £25 for caravans, camping, etc the “little sun” charity will donate a similar lamp to Africa.

On a personal level, Sandy’s chosen charity for his year is Calvert Trust at Keswick which organise outdoor venture-style activities for physically and mentally restricted teenagers and young adults.

So like all his predecessors over the years, Sandy is determined to lead the Clitheroe Rotary Club to continue doing the many Rotary activities to help individuals and communities - thus maintaining the traditions of the club of transforming lives, making a difference and being a non-political inspiration to our community. All examples of the Rotary ethos over the last 84 years of “Service above Self” in the Ribble Valley and Clitheroe area.

Anyone who has a good idea or a needy organisation should feel free to contact Clitheroe Rotary Club.

Rotarian David Wymer was also installed as president-elect during the lunch activities.