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We are sure the Immediate Past President Andrew Bates will not take offence with the opening expression but for the new President Melanie Hughes of Rotherham Sitwell Rotary Club this has more than one meaning.

Last Thursday was a Speaker Meeting and the subject was Slavery and People Trafficking. The presentation was given by Sheena Field of the Medaille Trust. Sheena explained the work of the Trust and its aims. Some of the facts she gave us were very surprising, not least the fact that UK Nationals are the most commonly reported victims in the UK followed by Albanian and Vietnamese.

At the Handover Meeting on 5 July, Melanie Hughes took over as President of Rotherham Sitwell Rotary Club for the Rotary Year 2018-19. In our 30th Anniversary Year Mel is our second Lady President and at the age of 43 is also one of our younger members. We all wish her a fantastic year in office.

The Paul Harris Fellowship Award is one of the highest honours Rotary can bestow upon a person.

Last month saw the traditional "Kids Out" visit to Cleethorpes by pupils from Newman School. Rotarians John Walton and Phil Crutchley accompanied 14 pupils, staff and carers from Newman School on the annual visit to the seaside. The visit was led, as always, by Rotarian Catherine Bridge.

Wow, what a superb trip! 34 Rotarians and partners went to Pomorie in Bulgaria on Thursday 24th May, and returned Bank Holiday Monday 28th. Andy Bates booked the flights, the hotel, and several coach trips with a very witty local guide whose English was better than many English people!

Members of the club acted as marshals for the Pawson 10K and Fun Run event on Sunday 6 May at Clifton Park and surrounding area. We have had a “thank you” from the organiser, Steve Gaines, and agree with him that the events went really well; lots of fun in glorious sunshine, some excellent performances; also good support in the park and round the streets close to the park.

Rotherham United are delighted to have been chosen as the 100th community supported by local charity Start-a-Heart 24:7, who have raised money to have the milestone defibrillator installed at AESSEAL New York Stadium.

The team at Maples Cancer Care on Badsley Moor Lane know how a cancer diagnosis can affect everything in your life, and they believe no one should face cancer alone.
Rotherham Sitwell Rotary Club has supported the Centre over the last six years, and our members have been happy to be involved.

Start-a-Heart count themselves very fortunate to be one of the charities supported by Rotherham Sitwell Rotary Club and are grateful not only for their financial support but also for their help at fund raising events, particularly the annual Family Fun Day at Woodlaithes Village and the Magna Ultimate Quiz Parties.

Last Thursday was a Speaker Meeting and the talk was given by our very own Ann Ogley. When most of us think of a holiday we picture ourselves lying on a sun-soaked beach sipping our favourite cocktail.

Yesterday evening we inducted two new lady members – very appropriate on International Women’s Day.

This week Ian Ward, from Dronfield Rotary Club, and pictured here with our own Paul G Daniels, visited to provide an update on the Fishtail Project in Nepal. This is a scheme where the Dronfield Club raises money to pay for the education of gifted children in Nepal who come from poor backgrounds, and whose parents cannot afford the costs of education (clothing, books, transport).

At Thursday’s meeting, Sitwell Rotary Club welcomed its newest member, Councillor Maggi Clark, formerly Mayor of Rotherham. As Mayor Maggi had been an Honorary member, and she is the first Honorary Member to move on to full membership.

On Thursday 25th January members, partners and guests went ten pin bowling at Rotherham Superbowl. (Our thanks to members of Wortley Rotary Club who also supported this event.) We managed to avoid any serious injuries (to ourselves as well as nearby spectators) but I am sure that there were a few aches and pains the following day.

This year is the 25th Rotherham Real Ale and Music Festival, once again to be held at Magna on 1st 2nd and 3rd March. The event is sponsored by BEST Solicitors, and will feature real ales, ciders, wines and a diverse music programme over the three days.

Our speaker last Thursday was Gaynor Smith, Clinical Lead with Rotherham Abuse Counselling service. This is a charity, which operates for local people aged 13 and over, providing help with a whole range of physical, mental, sexual and other serious abuse and/or violence issues. She is pictured here with Mel Hughes, who introduced her to Sitwell Rotary Club.

In 1979 Rotary International made it their mission to eradicate Polio, starting with a major inoculation programme in the Philippines. Alongside the Bill Gates Foundation, the World Health Organisation and UNICEF, Rotary has helped make this dreaded disease is a thing of the past in developed countries and we are just a hair’s breadth away from making this the case throughout the world.

Once again members of the Club accompanied Bernardo's' Young Carers to the Christmas pantomime at the Civic Theatre. There were 20 Young Carers, 4 of their staff and 4 Club members. Everyone had a great time ( Oh yes they did!).