Record-breaking collections go towards Water Aid funds

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The Rotary Club of Steyning & Henfield would like to sincerely thank the residents of Steyning in showing amazing levels of generosity and support for our Christmas Collections in 2015.

The weather was wet, very wet and windy - but despite this, the kind residents of Steyning, Bramber, and Upper Beeding brought their children to their front doors in order to say hello to Father Christmas and his Rotarian elves and to begin their Christmas celebrations in earnest.

Many people told us how much they look forward to the Christmas Carols being played on the Christmas Sleigh at their front doors, and the excitement of their children meeting Father Christmas, to assure him that they have been exceedingly well behaved this year, and yes, they have written their letters. For many, this is the beginning of their Christmas celebrations, and we in Rotary are delighted to be part of this.

It also provides an opportunity to invite people along to the Carol Service in Lancing College Chapel, with the Salvation Army Band and leadership, solo singers and our fellow Rotarians from Shoreham & Southwick. We are always delighted when so many people come along to join us in this great Carol Service, and to celebrate Christmas in Song in aid of the hungry and homeless.

Our collections over Christmas have raised funds in the region of £2,930 which we have already started to use to help Charities, Organisations and people we support, such as The Salvation Army, Christmas FoodParcels for those in need locally (with generous support from The Steyning Co-op), Steyning Grammar School - Young Musician, Leadership Scheme, and Interact, Steyning Area First Responders, Steyning Millennium Trust, Chanctonbury Community Playscheme, Friends of Lancing College Chapel, and Henfield Scout Group - ‘The Oldest Existing Scout Group in the World’.

We are now responding to an urgent Worldwide call for support by making a donation of £3,000 to WaterAid which will be matched by the UK Government to make a total donation of £6,000 direct to WaterAid. People need clean water if they are to survive, and every penny spent in support will save lives. Other Charities we are supporting this year includes Macmillan Cancer Support, The Three Forts Challenge - supporting Ferring Country Centre - for training and work experience for people with learning difficulties, Shelterbox, Marie Curie and many other local deserving causes.

The Rotary Club of Steyning & Henfield is part of Rotary International, a volunteer organisation formed of local people, united in fellowship to provide support for local people and beyond, and for social groups through fundraising and other activities. We are a small club of around 18 members, all local people who freely give their time to help to make a difference to those most in need. Our members come from a wide range of working backgrounds and we are always keen to welcome new members. Call me if you would like talk about meeting us. We have no rituals and are very informal. We meet for fellowship and dinner at the Castle Hotel in Bramber once a week on Thursdays. If you are interested in finding out more about us, call me and I’d be delighted to answer your questions.

Report contributed by Denis Cummings, president, Rotary Club of Steyning & Henfield.