5, 6, 7 June 2009
High Suffolk (UK), Leipzig (Germany), Nieuwkoop (The Netherlands), Rotselaar (Belgium) Le Vesinet (France) and Lublin (Poland).
Thursday 4 June 09
Early (very enthusiastic!) arrivals from UK – together with our highly-respected Coordinator from Belgium, Patrick Billiet – were warmly greeted, and the opportunity taken to celebrate Poland’s Independence Day with champagne in the historic Stare Miasto (Old Town)market square
Friday 5 June 09
After a fascinating visit by the “early birds” to the magnificent Palace of Kozlowka, RCL greeted the main group of Rotarians and Partners at the conference base, the Hotel Europa in Lublin. An informal meeting was held at the nearby RCL meeting room in Czartoryski Palace at 6 pm, attended by the members of RCL and all guests.
After formal preliminary welcomes and introductions in the Great Ballroom, the itinerary was explained and an informal reception held in the meeting room. The high spot was the many songs contributed by guests from their own country – everyone joined in with gusto, and this was the perfect way to guarantee the meeting of hearts and minds vital to a successful conference. One or two glasses of good cheer went down very well – which was so productive and enjoyable that many stayed till after midnight and joined in the “Cultural Open Doors” events in Lublin’s famous and beautiful 14th Century Stare Miasto (Old Town).
Saturday 6 June 09
The keen interest in the historic Old Town (given colour by a special public welcome to the Rotarians by Lublin’s official Town Crier in 15th-Century costume) was maintained by a number of visits to key locations like Lublin Castle, the former Jewish enclave, The Catholic Cathedral, and the Orthodox Cathedral, where the choir gave a special performance for the Rotarians.
Then came a visit to the location of an RIC officially-sponsored project – The Handicapped Children & Teenagers’ Rehabilitation Centre – where delegates met and interacted with patients and staff, and facilities inspected, with particular care to exchange encouraging words and appraise the equipment being funded by RIC activity, some already in use, the rest being planned and specified.
In the evening was the Gala Dinner in the Europa Hotel Ballroom, with fine entertainment interspersed by informal speeches and the forging of enhanced friendships!
Sunday 7 June 09
The final day started with a tour and brunch at The Museum of the Countryside, part of the spectacular reconstructed mediaeval village of Skansen. For many delegates there were final discussions & au revoirs.
6 June 2009
Rotary Club of Lublin
Held in Lublin, Poland, 6 June 2009
Chair – Piotr Lopatynski, President-elect of RC Lublin
All Clubs were represented- RC High Suffolk (UK), RC Leipzig (Germany), RC Nieuwkoop (The Netherlands), RC Rotselaar (Belgium), RC Le Vesinet (France) and RC Lublin (Poland).
Welcoming address by President Waldemar & President-elect Piotr Lopatynski of RC Lublin.
President Elect Piotr Lopatynski of Lublin welcomed all delegates to the meeting. He thanked Rotarians Patrick Biliet, Waldemar Swiatkowski and other Lublin colleagues for their fine efforts in organising the weekend. He also thanked the Nieuwkoop President for last year’s excellent event.
Minutes of meeting held in 2008
Minutes of the RIC Meeting held on 6-8 June 2008 in Nieuwkoop were presented and adopted.
Matters arising from the minutes.
Handover of RIC banner to RC Lublin.
The RIC banner was formally presented to Lublin, to be held for 2009/10 by the President of RC Lublin.
Roll call of the 6 Presidents and RIC participants.
Annual Presidents’ Reports from member clubs (5 minutes/club).
Jurgina Feith, Secretary, reported that the club now has 32 members, including 8 ladies. The funds they raised came mainly from ‘Jazz on the Plaz’. Support goes to children (locally and in South Africa). 5 defibrilators were bought to be used in the Nieuwkoop area.
Luc Staudt, President, explained that club members, as true Rotarians, emphasise community service & friendship. The club tries to have bilateral contacts with all RIC clubs once during the year. The fundraisers were the golf-walk and the Christmas sales (chocolates and champagne), which allowed the investment of a large sum of money for a fire-alarm system in a house for young girls on the fringes of society.
Daniel Rether, President, explained that finally the matching grant for the Addis Ababa project (last year’s RIC project) had been approved. The fundraisers are still the „Evening with Magicians” and the Wine & Food fair.
Klaus Muller President-elect, reported that the club has 68 members, but that their increasing age is becoming a problem: they are actively looking for younger new members. The projects were „the School in Africa” and support for professional choices in high schools. The club volunteers to organise RIC2011.
Susan Hansen, President, gave the anual report. The club has grown to 23 members, incl 2 ladies. The club and the whole area suffers from economic probems. The club raised money for a project for dogs for blind people.
Piotr Lopatynski, President-elect, reported a membership increase of 3, now standing at 37. On 26 November 2008, RC Lublin organised for The Association for Physically Disabled Children & Youth ”The Great Charity Concert”, featuring two of Poland’s most popular cabaret acts, who performed free. Over 750 tickets were sold. The Swedish RC of Alvesta donated 250 mobile walking frames for the grateful use of hospitals and old & disabled individuals. We joined RC Chelm, Poland, & RC Douai Sud, France (District 1670), in a matching grant for Caritas in Chelm, to construct a special rural holiday facility for the disadvantaged, involving, inter alia, installing a water delivery and purification plant.
Report on the joint project for 2008/2009 by RC Nieuwkoop
The funds went to the cultural society of Nieuwkoop. In the building all social layers of the community are brought together through art and culture; also children (socially underprivileged and refugees) play an important role. With the money the building space could be expanded so more people can be reached.
Report presented by Piotr Lopatynski on the joint project for 2009/2010 by RC Lublin.
“The Association for Physically Disabled Children and Youth has its HQ in Lublin, and serves our whole Province. At the HQ is the large Handicapped Children & Teenagers’ Rehabilitation Centre, employing about 40, including professional physiotherapists, who monthly give over 700 individual rehab sessions to over 200 children, mostly suffering from infantile cerebral palsy, autism, muscular dystrophy and Down’s syndrome, as well as serious accident injuries. The centre also has additional activities for young people from poor or pathological families in neighbouring districts.
This fine work came to the attention of RCL 3 years ago and all the affiliated clubs from the 6 countries decided to combine activities in cooperating with and aiding the Association.
Now the Association needs to open a new rehabilitation room, but they do not have the funds to buy the necessary equipment, especially for physical therapy. Specialised equipment for the new rehabilitation facility in the Centre has already been selected. The total sum necessary to finance the whole undertaking is around US$25.000 The estimated project-completion time is 4 months.
As the first step towards raising the funds for this equipment, RC Lublin organised on 26 November 2008 “The Great Charity Concert”, featuring two of Poland’s most popular cabaret acts. The artistes and concert agency fully supported our worthy cause and took no payment for the performance. We sold over 750 tickets for the show and received additional funding from sponsors, so raised US$10.000, which we have allocated to spend on the Association’s equipment needs. Also a Grant Application is to be lodged.
The next step is THIS conference! A great opportunity to visit the actual centre to which your generous donations have been made and – we hope – will be made, to show how these funds are being put to excellent use and to interact with the patients, therapists and directors, to give encouragement and support, and to appraise their precise equipment needs. The intention is to make this liaison an ongoing activity into the foreseeable future.
May I conclude this report by thanking you all again for your invaluable support and donations for the centre and your eagerness to visit the Centre. We are confident this will fire your further support.
Thank you so much”
RIC Discussions led by High Suffolk
High Suffolk presented a few ideas to share with the wider RIC community and to consider throughout the coming year; on which the club will send a formal notice to all other clubs
- Clubs should have the option of holding RIC events outside their immediate area to keep activities fresh for RIC attendees who have been to previous RIC’s in that country.
- RIC projects should be published well in advance (the year before) to ensure that all clubs have the chance to review and comment on the proposed project.
- High Suffolk would prefer that projects be of an International nature, outside any of the six RIC countries, making the benefits truly international.
- The club is strongly in favour of a common RIC website to be used throughout the year by all RIC clubs
Gerard Spaggiari (RC Le Vesinet) proposed that we should think about expansion towards the south of Europe (Italy or Spain).
Confirmation of RC Rotselaar as organising club
RC Rotselaar will host the next Annual General Meeting on 5 June 2010
Presentation of the programme.
Dirk gave a presentation on next year’s RIC. The main idea is PIM – participation integration mix.
It will be a programme with some new ideas, necessary now that the first cycle of RIC meetings has ended. All information will follow soon via the regular RIC newsletter and the (in construction) website.
Proposals concerning RIC 2010
It was decided that each club would discuss 2010 plans and exchange proposals during the year, so that consensus is reached before the next RIC and decisions are formalised during the 2010 AGM.
Patrick Billiet accepted once more being the RIC coordinator for the coming year.
There being no further business the meeting closed at 13.35 hours.
Social project Lublin 2009
Dear Rotarian Friends,
Enclosed please find information relating to the Project for our local community which consists in supporting the Association for Physically Disabled Children and Youth in Lublin.
Within this project we would like to donate money received from the clubs associated in RIC.
I would also like to stress that we plan to carry out the project within an international grant from Rotary Foundation, for which we transferred money collected by our Club. Moreover, our project was also joined by our founding club from France, RC Douai – Sud under the leadership of our friend Marcel Stefanski, Past Governor District 1670.
Association for Physically Disabled Children and Youth has its seat in Lublin and covers all the territory of our Province with its activities. We got in touch with this organization quite accidentally. Two years ago one of the persons whose child was taken care of by the Association on the daily basis, asked us for help in gathering money for a specialist rehabilitation running track for the Association’s charges to use. Our club instantly responded to this and very soon we were able to transfer to their account around €2,000.
The most import ant effect of this undertaking was the fact that once we visited the seat of the Association to hand in our gift, we were surprise by the by the scope and resilience of their activity. The Association (managed on a daily basis by just three persons) runs a very big rehabilitation centre used monthly by around 200 children having over 700 different individual rehab sessions. The centre employs ca. 40 persons, including professional physiotherapists. Their charges are mostly children suffering from infantile cerebral palsy, autism, muscular dystrophy and Down’s syndrome, as well as children who suffered in accidents. Moreover, caregivers from the Association offer additional activities for the youth from a nearby district form poor or pathological families.
It should be noted that the members of the Association bought the building in which the centre is organised taking loans as individuals. At the moment they use the support of some governmental agendas, but the funds they get are sufficient only to cover a part of their monthly expenses. The remaining funds are raised by the by the Association on their own, i.e. from donations, members’ fees as well as from its own minor activities (like, for example, sales of Christmas Cards made by their charges).
After the first undertaking, we decided to organise an action that would allow us to collect more significant funds. We were even more motivated when we learnt that due to the increasing number of disabled children, the Association is forced to open a new rehabilitation room, but they did not have enough funds to buy the necessary equipment, especially the equipment for physical therapy.
Organising on 26/11/2008 “The Great Charity Concert” featuring two Poland’s most popular cabarets was the first step to gain such fund. I have to emphasise here that the artist who fully supported our noble cause did not take any pay for the performance. We were also supported by the concert agency which organises performances of these two cabarets on a daily basis.
The tickets for the performance (over 750) were sold in just a couple of days and we got additional funding from sponsors. During that night we manage to raise around €9,000.
Additionally, RC Douai – Sud Club decided to give a $3,000 grant, which allowed this Club – in relation with organising an international grant – to get an equivalent of this amount from District.
This money however is still not sufficient to finance the whole undertaking. That is why we decided to allot for this purpose also the money transferred by your clubs and to finally increase the amount by organising the grant.
I would like to inform you that all rehabilitation equipment which will be in the new rehabilitation facility in the Centre has been selected and – though in some cases only – pro forma invoices have been issued. I made the purchase plan in such a way so as to adjust it to the amount collected. The point is to finance the most necessary equipment first and then, if there are sufficient funds, to continue with the renovation of the room which will make it possible to adapt this room to new purposes.
The total sum necessary to finance the whole undertaking amounts to around €40,000.
Therefore we would like to ask all Rotarians from the clubs associated within RIC to express official consent to allocate funds transferred by you (compliant to para. 11 of RIC rules) to the grant created by us for the benefit of the Association for Physically Disabled Children and Youth.
In the event of granting such consent by you, it shall be necessary to confirm your clubs’ participation in the grant in writing. The declaration would formally open the way for your clubs to obtain support from the international grant funds of particular Districts.
Joint participation of all clubs supported by their Districts and acquiring funds from the Rotary Foundation would allow us to wholly complete this undertaking.
All charges of the Association and us are looking forward to your support and positive answer.
In order to present, we hope, the future undertaking, we plan a visit to the seat of the Association and meeting with the disabled children during the annual RIC meeting.
President Elect 2009/2010
Coordinator, Grant for Association for Physically Disabled Children and Youth in Lublin