Tsunami book project comes to an end

The Rotary Club of Stamford loads the final delivery of books
The Rotary Club of Stamford loads the final delivery of books
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A Rotary club has reached the final chapter in a project to send books to children in Sri Lanka.

For the past eight years, the Rotary Club of Stamford has been collecting books to send to the children of Sri Lanka.

The books were sent to the country to restock schools affected by the Indian Ocean Tsunami on Boxing Day 2004.

It followed an appeal by the Rotary Club of Kandy in area, which was already involved because the Sri Lankan Government had tasked the club with looking after the 8,000 children who were orphaned during the Tsunami.

Along with other Rotary clubs in the UK, the Rotary Club of Stamford agreed to fund a number of orphans for three years. The Rotary Club of Stamford funded 38.

As a result, a relationship grew between the two Rotary clubs and the Rotary Club of Kandy asked the Stamford group to collect children’s reading books, suitable for youngsters up to the age of 12.

This proved successful and as the children grew up, the club was also asked for textbooks up to GCSE standard and also reference books such as encyclopaedias, atlases, dictionaries and travel books.

The Mercury backed the appeal and hundreds of books were donated by readers to our former offices in Sheep Market, Stamford, as part of the appeal.

In all, with the final shipment of 10 tons earlier this month, the Rotary Club of Stamford, has sent 29 tons of books at an estimated total new value of £600,000.

To provide the 29 tons of books has been a huge achievement and the Rotary Club of Stamford would like to thank the many contributors, such as local schools and many individuals, who have made it possible.

Throughout the period of book collection, John Teesdale provided storage at Copthill Farm and on October 2, the packing and loading of the final shipment was quickly achieved by the superb joint efforts of a team of airmen from RAF Wittering, Cummins Generator Technology staff, farm workers from Copthill Farm and the Rotary Club of Stamford members.

The task is not finished however, as it will be taken up by another Rotary Club to continue to provide help to the children of Sri Lanka through the Rotary organisation.