Having Jenny Cooke back to update the members of East Kilbride Rotary Club on her fund raising journey was one of the highlights of the speaker's calendar. Jenny, a winner of Young Scot of the Year 2016, had spoken at a club lunch in February 2016 and members were eager to learn about her progress with her fund raising and how she coped with fund raising, schooling and her own health issues, all this being planned and organised from a purpose built office in her back garden. We were not disappointed as Jenny launched confidently into her talk opening with the fact the fund for the Glasgow Children's Hospital had reached a breath-taking level of £288,000. With her infectious charm she went on to list the events she was organising, ladies tea parties, lighting up the Kelpes purple for one day, some of the many events being planned. Always at her side with unstinting support for Jenny is her mother Kirsten, and she has been volunteered for Jenny's next fund raising escapade, climbing the 3 highest peaks in Scotland, England and Wales - all within 24 hours. This gives a new interpretation to "getting on your bike". The club had put Jenny forward as their representative for Rotary Young Citizen Award. The Rotary International Great Britain and Ireland (Rotary) Young Citizen Awards (YCA) were created to celebrate the achievements and commitment of inspiring young people across Great Britain and Ireland which epitomises Jenny however she was not successful on this occasion. Giving the vote of thanks George McGraw commented on the dedication, enthusiasm and confidence of Jenny in coping with IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), still bubbly and effervescent and determined to continue on her fund raising mission.
On the 21st of April 2017 President Bruce Gunn had the pleasure of presenting Honorary membership to Eddie Robertson. Eddie became a member of the club in October 1980 and it was with a heavy heart he resigned early this year.
He maintains the club history site and has records going back 53 years, plenty of nostalgia for some of the members. This will allow retain his link with the club and in contact will the many friends he has developed over the years. Eddie took time with a few words to thank the club for their kindness in granting this award & that he would endeavour to live up to their granting Honorary membership to him
The emotions of East Kilbride Rotary Club members were moved as they listened to Jacqui Nelson and Angela Quinn describe their pilgrimage to Lourdes, France. Both are teachers at St Andrew's and St Brides and have visited Lourdes on many occasions. Groups from all around the world organise a pilgrimage holiday to Lourdes for disadvantaged and disabled children and adults. Jacqui and Angela determined their visit this year would include taking 8 disadvantaged children from East Kilbride and surrounding area. An ambitious undertaking as they had to select 8 disadvantaged children from all faiths and none, raise £10,000 and find volunteer helpers to make the journey to Lourdes. Undaunted the two dedicated teachers raised the funds, selected the children and secured volunteer helpers which included 3 of the schools 6th year pupils. All helpers paid all of their own costs. Jacqui became quite emotional as she recounted her experience while selecting the disadvantaged children. Local children whose homes are disjointed, some with no mothers, a father out of work no furniture in the house, alcohol issues, scarcely any clothing or shoes and never sure of when they get their next meal and despite all this they are happy children. They organised the trip through Hosanna House & Children's Pilgrimage Trust (HCPT), founded in 1956 by Dr Michael Strode. The 8 children and helpers set out during April for Lourdes where they visited Gavarnie in the mountains, took part in torchlight processions and mingled with children from other parts of the world for fun and games. The Lourdes holiday is somewhere the children are not judged on disabilities or material possessions, where everyone is equal. Closing their talk Jacqui and Angela said they were preparing for next year's pilgrimage holiday, with the target of raising more than £10,000 and increasing the number of children in the group. Rotarian David Taylor gave the vote of thanks commenting he himself had been involved in similar missions as a minister thanking the ladies for an excellent talk and the work they were doing in the community