RCEPI President, Shirley Dunne and other RCEPI members met the Governor at the Estoi Casa do Povo to show him the improvements that the Club has provided for the building over the years, including heating and wheelchair ramps. The Faro Food Bank distributes food packs monthly to families registered with them and RCEPI provides long-life milk to supplement the packs together with olive or vegetable oil which is no longer readily available from other sources. At Christmas extra goodies were organised together with presents for the children of the registered families.

During lunch at the Pousada a presentation was played showing the Club’s achievements during the year. In addition to the ongoing project at the Casa do Povo, RCEPI has also supported the purchase of a Laparoscopy Tower to benefit the whole Algarve. We have provided funding for a local Estoi girl, Margarida to go to Faro University and supported the costs of much-needed equipment for her to continue to walk unaided. RCEPI have been helping her since she was 9 and in a wheelchair. The Club raised funds for her to have 2 hip operations enabling her to walk properly when she was 15.

The Club has also provided Shelterboxes to help the humanitarian crises in Pakistan following the flooding and in Turkey and Syria after the earthquakes. A bike ride raised 500 euros for the End Polio Now Fund which was matched 2 to 1 by the Gates Foundation.

English/Portuguese dictionaries were given to the local school in Estoi and career talks will soon be taking place there. Summer camps have been arranged for 16 students to attend to meet contemporaries from around the world.

The biggest project undertaken by the Club was providing water filters to Ukraine. The original target was to raise 200.000 euros and provide 10.000 filters. Due to a fantastic response from various donors, 306.000 euros was achieved meaning 18.000 filters can be distributed. For those of us who can turn a tap on every morning without a second thought, it is almost impossible to understand what a huge difference this makes to the families affected by the devastation of their infrastructure systems.

The Governor gave a talk on the Rotary International goals for this year reiterating the Rotary theme for 2022-23 - “Imagine, a world that deserves our best,” where we get up each day knowing that we can make a difference.”

If you would like to make a difference in your community and learn more about how Rotary can help you achieve that please contact info@rotaryestoipalace.org or visit www.rotaryestoipalace.org.