Rotary International Director Ron Ferrill, from Virginia, along with Rotary District Governor Waddy Sowma, from Suriname, and Past District Governor David Edwards, from Barbados visited Dominica from January 29th – 30th, 2018. The high ranking Rotary officials came to assess the damage caused by Hurricane Maria and visit the recovery projects being undertaken by the local Rotary clubs to determine how they can assist with funding at the District and International level.
Upon their arrival on Monday January 29th they visited homes in Marigot, Woodford Hill, and Calibishie which have had their roofs repaired by the Rotary Club of Portsmouth following Hurricane Maria. The club intends to repair a total of fifteen homes that suffered roof damage in the north.
The delegation, accompanied by Ezra Fabien, President of the Rotary Club of Portsmouth, and other Board members, also visited a home in Dublanc that received one of over a thousand water filtration systems distributed by US based charity Waves for Water with assistance from Rotary. They were also present for the handing over of ten fish pots made by Nicolas King of Cottage Hill to the fishing cooperative of Bioche and Dublanc. The Rotary Club of Portsmouth which commissioned this project had already distributed twenty fish pots to the fishermen of Portsmouth, and an additional ten pots will to distributed to the Bioche/Dublanc cooperative upon completion.
On Tuesdays January 30th the group, along with Haynes Jacob, Acting Assistant Governor for Dominica, and Aylmer Irish, President of the Rotary Club of Dominica, paid visits to the President of the Commonwealth of Dominica His Excellency, The Honourable Charles Savarin, and the Acting Prime Minister Honourable Reginald Austrie. Both President Savarin and Ag. PM Austrie praised the efforts of Rotary, pledged their support to Rotary, and made suggestions on projects the clubs can undertake.
The ensemble then visited the Operation Youth Quake, in Savanne Park, and the new Grotto Home for the Homeless building, in Bellevue Rawle. Both buildings were severely damaged during Hurricane Maria and require extensive repairs to their roofs. The Rotary Club of Dominica has initiated projects to fund the repairs required.
During the visit to Dominica both clubs hosted the foreign delegation at a dinner in Picard on the 29th and a cocktail in Roseau on the 30th respectively. Rotary International Director Ron Ferrill and Rotary District Governor Waddy Sowma addressed the members of the clubs, and members of the Rotaract Club of Roseau. They praised the work that the clubs have done to date, encouraged the membership to continue making a difference in their communities despite having been affected by the ravages of the hurricane themselves, and indicated that both District and international funding is available to assist with their efforts.
At the ceremonies the Rotary Club of Portsmouth inducted its newest member Rudolf Stomps, while the Rotary Club of Dominica inducted four new members Donalson Frederick, Abigail Antoine, Jasmine Timothy and Brenton Hilaire.