Help the Hospice
Bob Baird, Enniskillen Rotary Club's World Community Chair and District Officer for Child Protection and Health and Safety for Rotary in Ireland, gave an inspiring talk of how a small, but very committed, club can achieve so much. Bob had become more and more disillusioned helping terminally ill children on their way to the Children's Hospice in Belfast. He persuaded his Rotary Club to adopt a project to raise enough funds to build a hospice just outside Enniskillen. They initiated the Ladies Midnight Walk through Enniskillen to raise awareness and funds.
On the first walk they had 350 ladies all with purple tabards and lights but were horrified when the police said they could not provide any officers to give the ladies protection as there was a sensitive meeting that night in the town. However, they went ahead as no trouble makers would dare face down 350 committed ladies! But there were difficulties that night - persuading 350 high spirited ladies to go home at 2.30am in the morning after a little light refreshments provided by the Club members. On that first walk they received a full page of publicity in the local paper for the Enniskillen Rotary Club; in subsequent years they now get two full pages of publicity for the Club and their fund raising events. Since then they have raised £350,000 towards the Enniskillen Hospice and the Children's Hospice Movement in Belfast have taken on the project and are organising Midnight Walks from Customs House Square 25 May and in Enniskillen 9 September.
Bob introduced Karen Dunlop the Fund Raising Co-ordinator for the Children's Hospice Movement, who is looking for help from any member who could act as a marshall in this year’s Belfast Marathon where the nominated charity is the Children's Hospice. She would also be delighted if any member would volunteer to help in the Hospice or raise funds for the Hospice; as out of the £3m annual running costs, the movement only receives £500,000 from the State.