Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Rotary Club of Roggebaai and Rotary Family Health Day

One of the many wonderful elements of the Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholar programme is that they place each scholar with a host Rotary Club. 

I was lucky enough to wind up with a small vibrant club of 12 members, the Rotary Club of Roggebaai (pronounced more like rock-a-bye but substitute the 'ck' with a throaty 'G' sound).

The club has been wonderful and taken me under their wing. Aside from my host family, one couple in particular (Sonia and Humphrey) have opened their home to me – they’ve had me for over for din and shared about their experiences living in Zimbabwe (now Rhodesia) and South Africa. They are exactly how I would like to be in retirement. They do things that interest them, travel, keep wonderful company and give back to their community. I suppose I shouldn’t wait until retirement to aspire to be like them!

Humphrey, Renata (Ambassadorial Scholar from Germany), Sonia and the dogs at their house for din

Another Rotarian in the club, Peter, is a retired photographer and has been kind enough to give me lessons. He is warm, friendly and has a great sense of humour!

As much as the social aspect is wonderful, Rotary South Africa also does some amazing work.

Over the next few posts I will feature a few different projects that I Rotary does here. First up is... 

Family Health Day:

Rotary Family Health Day

Rotary Family Health Day - TB Screeing

Earlier this year, Rotary, in conjunction with the South African Department of Health, set up centres where people could come for free health services. 

Blood pressure testing

Condoms, pamphlets on medical male circumcision

The event was held throughout the country and services included blood pressure, blood sugar tuberculosis and HIV testing, deworming, vaccinations for children and free condoms and sanitary pads. They also provided information on a host of other health-related topics.

During a lull in visitors, I went through the ‘circuit’ of family health day activities with Peter capturing it on camera to show some of the things that they offer and get my health sorted at the same time.

Getting registered

Blood Sugar Test

Blood pressure test - mine is a bit high :S

Pre-HIV test counselling

HIV test

What a great initiative to support the government in providing some basic health services. I wrote recently about access to health care, focusing on the unfair reality that access to health care is oftentimes determined by the circumstances people are born into. Given that many South Africans have poor access to basic health services, programs like Family Health Day help to fill that gap.

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