Speaker meeting 7th September 2015

Jenny with President Tony and Pam

President Tony Beenham and the members of the Rotary Club of Church Wilne welcomed Jenny Cuadrado and Pam Black from CHICKS" to their speaker meeting on Monday 7th September at the Royal Oak in Ockbrook.

Jenny, who is the Daleside Community Fundraiser, said that CHICKS is a national children's charity that provides respite breaks for disadvantaged children from across the UK. Since its inception in 1992 they have provided over 12,500 breaks for children at its retreats in Devon and Cornwall. Each retreat takes up to 16 children, eight boys and eight girls, at one time and is overseen by highly trained and enthusiastic Respite Break Leaders along with a team of energetic and fully-vetted volunteers.

Currently they are renovating Daleside at Fenny Bentley, near to Ashbourne in the Peak District and this should be up and running next year. Daleside will naturally provide much easier access to areas such as Nottingham, Derby, Leicester, Birmingham, Manchester and Liverpool and will provide breaks for a further 600 children each year. Currently they have raised just over 50% of the total costs for Daleside.

The members were treated to a DVD when activities such as many seeing the sea for the first time, canoeing, horse riding, ice-skating, tobogganing, swimming, discos, camp fires and seeing friendships made.

Pam spoke about the safe environment at the retreats, the positive effects on all sitting together at meal times and said they mostly were shy on arrival, somewhat aggressive and showing off and they leave happy, content with memories of a wonderful time made with new friends and experiences. 40% of the children return the following year and they all say it's an experience of a life time.

Volunteers are always welcomed and most valuable and for further information email volunteer@chicks.org.uk

The Club's vote of thanks was given by Mike Stevenson who congratulated the work of the organisation and said it was tremendously successful and worthwhile. Giving respite to many at risk brought into focus the problems that still exist today. He wished them every success with their third retreat at Fenny Bentley which is all through donations and fundraising.

For any further information on speaker evenings and upcoming events, contact Rotarian John Astell at: rccw1220@gmail.com

Ray Terry
For the Rotary Club of Church Wilne

24th August 2015


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