Rotarians lead the way.jpg

Rotarians lead the way

THE ROTARY International slogan for the year 2006/7 is ‘Leading the way’, and the Rotary Club of Silves is certainly typifying that in more ways than one.

Rotarian Isabel Flores was recently installed as the club’s new president, taking office from retiring president Rosília Martins. The handover night was at the Vale da Pinta Golf Club in Carvoeiro, where 72 Rotarians and guests heard of the achievements of the club during Rtn Rosília’s year and the message for the future from the incoming president. Rosília thanked club members for their support and dedication to the Rotary ideals, and wished Isabel Flores every success during her year in office.

The highlight of the evening was the presentation of 4,000 euros to the Bombeiros of Silves and Alcantarilha by Rosília. Representatives from the two stations were on hand to receive the cheques. The bombeiros’ project was Rosília’s major thrust for the year, and a combination of barbecues, jazz nights and other fundraising events contributed to the total. She thanked all those who had supported the events, especially non Rotarians, without whose attendance the task would have been made all the more difficult.

Special certificates were presented by the outgoing president to Rotarians Hélio Cartaxo, Júlio Santos and Herbert Chatters, for their outstanding service to the community during the last year, and new members Ana Paula Silvestre and Maria José Santos were welcomed.

The incoming president promised to continue to support the existing projects and to serve the community. She also stressed the need to develop fellowship in Rotary throughout Portugal and North Africa, as a means of obtaining the best results. She outlined her projects for the year, creating bursaries for students and encouraging members to take part in activities promoted by other clubs. An example of this is the Praia da Rocha Eye Programme, whereby elderly people can qualify for a free eye test, provided by a qualified Rotarian, to help detect eye problems at an early stage.

During the evening, greetings were exchanged from visiting presidents of the clubs of Portimão, Lagos, Praia da Rocha, Faro, Loulé and Albufeira, together with those of visiting Rtn Mark Deering of the Rotary Club of Waco, Texas, the home of President George Bush. He has yet to attend a Rotary meeting, although 84-year-old Rotarian Mark has never missed a meeting in his 40 years of membership. Rtn Fritz Drabert, a past-president of the German Club of Mindon, also gave greetings from his club, as did representatives of local Lions Clubs.

Everyone enjoyed a superb buffet and celebrated the new Rotary year in fine style to the music of Simply Acoustic.

Other new officers for the year are vice-president Luís Guerreiro, executive secretary and Rotary Foundation delegate Maria de Lurdes Marreiros, treasurer and communications delegate Herbert Chatters, fellowship Hélio Cartaxo, chairman of community service and membership Noélia Consiglieri, chairman of community service international and youth exchange Rosa Burguer, chairman of community service in the community Ana Almeida, and chairman of business services Júlio Santos.