October-November 2018 | Features

The power of partnership

The power of partnership

Here are five more projects run by Rotary clubs in Great Britain and Ireland which demonstrate the power of partnership in changing the lives of others through The Rotary Foundation.

These projects are teaching peace and conflict resolution, providing basic sanitation, support access to education and so much more.


Bringing basic sanitation to a remote village in Malawi

Area of focus: Providing clean water

Host sponsor: Rotary Inverness Culloden, Scotland

International sponsor: Rotary Lilongwe, Malawi

Total budget: £48,000

Background: The project focussed on the eradication of open defecation in rural communities and waterborne diseases by addressing education and training.

Scope: Providing a water pump for clean water, building a new well, and  providing two toilets with hand washing facilities.

Fun fact: International partners came from Scotland, England and France – the more partner clubs, the less financial burden on any individual club.

Top tip: Work on projects in phases. This phase was the second of three distinct, but related projects, designed to improve the lives of ordinary children in Malawi.

basic sanitation education malawi

The project focussed on the eradication of open defecation in rural communities

“Each of the villages with a nursery school was given a nutrition garden, as well as tomato, rapeseed, mustard plant and pak choi seeds to grow food to supplement the children’s diet – any excess vegetable production will be sold as a fundraising exercise for the village.”

Rotary member Duncan MacDonald

Introducing peace and conflict resolution to scottish students

Area of focus: Promoting peace

Host sponsor: Rotary in Southern Scotland

International sponsor: Rotary in the East Midlands, England

Total budget: £24,000

Background: Conflict within some of our most deprived areas can destroy lives and condemn young people to a life of misery and lost opportunities.

Scope: The project worked with the Duke of Edinburgh’s Awards scheme to identify individuals and provide mediation training.

Fun Fact: No club cash was needed for this project since all sponsor funds came from The Rotary Foundation’s District Designated Funds.

Top Tip: Remember, all of the nations within Rotary Great Britain and Ireland are treated as separate countries, so they can co-operate in global grants.


“I feel the impact has been consistency and being able to have a responsibility within their local community by helping others through their sectional awards and feeling better about themselves through exercise and health and wellbeing within their Duke of Edinburgh’s Award.”

Katie Nicol, Operations Manager, Muirhouse Youth Development Group

Providing solutions for feminine hygiene in India

Area of focus: Fighting disease

Host sponsor: Rotary Pune Inspira, India

International Sponsor: Rotary Cardiff
Bay, Wales

Total budget: £59,500

Background: Providing cost-effective solutions to the 250,000 female sanitary towels discarded in the Indian city
each year.

Scope: To provide 68 public areas within the city with waste incinerators, plus training for over 10,000 young women.

Fun Fact: A first in this type of project sponsored by Rotary and its Foundation, but which can now be replicated globally.

Top Tip: You can easily meet up with international partners – volunteers from both Rotary clubs met online via Zoom to discuss their project and celebrate success.

female hygiene sanitation project pune rotary foundation

10,000 young women received feminine hygiene education in Pune.

“The club was anxious to ensure that it was responding to a genuine local need and not simply imposing a project on a community that was not a priority for that community.”

Rotary member Steve Jenkins

Bringing the gift of hearing in Uganda

Area of focus: Saving mothers and children

Host sponsor: Rotary Sunrise, Kampala

International sponsor: Rotary Luton North

Total budget: $48,494 (£37,300)

Scope: Providing new Visual Reinforcement Audiometry which allows for behavioural hearing assessments of children over six months of age. This machine is the first and only one in Uganda.

Fun fact: The training aspects of the project produced enough capacity to introduce a newborn hearing and school hearing screening programme for the first time in Uganda.

Top tip:  This project was related to a previous project which sent a Vocational Training Team of experienced NHS audiologists to work with the local community and prepare the groundwork.


“The quality of life for many children and their parents will improve as result of our project. The new data will give the Ministry of Health an incentive to implement these programmes nationwide.”

Rotary member Paul Denton

Early years education support project Nepal

Area of Focus: Supporting Education

Host sponsor: Rotary Kathmandu Midtown, Nepal

International sponsor: Ellon Rotary, Scotland

Total budget: £50,586

Background: Rotary members North Scotland, with Ellon as the lead club, used district and global grants to transform the lives of communities affected by the 2015 earthquakes in Nepal.  Just as families were recovering from the earthquake, the monsoons with flooding and then fuel shortages followed.

Scope: Rotary provided access to quality education to all children in rural Nepal. With the aim to improve the quality of early years education, which has gradually extended to include older children, by focusing on the quality of teaching and learning environment.

Fun Fact: Rotary clubs can use a combination of global and district grants to implement a project. District grants were used for parts of the project that fell outside of Rotary’s Areas of Focus.

Top tip: Work with a Rotary club in the area and a good charity (First Steps Himalaya in this case) that knows the area well. Local knowledge and working with the community is essential to the success of a project.


“It is wonderful to have support from Rotary and First Steps Himalaya. We have learnt so much about how to run our school better. The classrooms are now bright and welcoming and the children are so much happier.”

Gyan Tamang, Jitpur headmaster

Read how The Rotary Foundation has brought more Rotary clubs together across the world in providing 50 clean water wells in an area of Sri Lanka ravaged by civil war.

Where’s there’s a well, there’s a way

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