IFCR International Projects and Funding

Since 1993 thousands of Rotarians have enjoyed that unique fellowship that Cricket and Rotary provide. But it is not just the fellowship and the game they have enjoyed. They have also enjoyed being able to share in helping others and many thousands of dollars /pounds etc have been raised and donated to causes around the world.

This fundraising element of the Fellowship probably started at the Second World Festival held in Chennai, India in 1999. Fordingbridge, the hosts of the First Festival in 1997, twinned with Anna Nagar in Chennai and did a Matching Grant project to provide 500 artificial limbs through the Mukti charity. This twinning link sprang into action when the Tsunami hit the Indian Coast and two new fishing boats were provided by the Fordingbridge club. The clubs have since been involved with providing some funding for a new water supply and toilet facilities for a school.

At this Festival the Lower Blue Mountains club in Sydney became a “sister club” of Chennai Towers Rotary Club, in Chennai. When the Tsunami hit, the Lower Blue Mountains provided A$30000 for fishing boat repairs and sewing machine workshops for the women.

At the same time the Australian team donated two sets of cricket gear (worth over $A1000) to a small orphanage.

Following this 4 Rotary clubs from Australia raised A$16000 through a matching grant to further support the orphanage. and create a new refuge for single mothers.

The Third festival in New Zealand resulted in NZ$23000 being raised for various causes including a generous contribution to the Rotary Foundation.   IFCR New Zealand have continued their fund raising and have just raised NZ$2000 to send a young person from the Christchurch area to England to play cricket and widen their leadership skills.

The Fourth World Festival in the Hunter Valley District of Australia in November 2004 further strengthened the friendships and as a result Rotary clubs near Lahore in Pakistan and in suburban Melbourne combined to fund a blood bank in Gujranwala, Pakistan to the tune of $US24979.

A fund raising dinner at the Festival helped to raise A$20000 for several Health Care Services Scholarships for indigenous Australian students through the Australian Rotary Health Research Fund.

The Hunter Valley local clubs got so involved with their guests from overseas that when the Tsunami hit a few weeks later, nine clubs combined to provide cycles for the children of the Tamil Nadu region of India. These cycles were presented by World President Carl-Wilhelm Stenhammar in January 2006.

World Festivals are just one part of IFCR. The other two parts are country festivals and country tours. In Australia annual festivals have resulted in fund raising events that have benefited the Children First Foundation (which helps children from war torn countries have medical help in Australia) and the LBW Trust (which helps orphans in Zimbabwe).

Country tours always create friendships that result in action to help others. When Australia visited South Africa a link was created which resulted in Rotary clubs in Australia and GB&I providing a new school bus for an AIDS orphanage in the Durban area.

The GB&I visit to South Africa has resulted in funding for a crèche in Cape Town and plans are in place for a Matching Grant project for a day care crèche in Durban

It is difficult to quantify the exact amount of funding that IFCR members have been involved with but it must run into hundreds of thousands of dollars/pounds.

The Colombo Festival in Sri Lanka in August 2007 saw teams from Australia, New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, South Africa and GB&I take part. More than 50 Rotary Clubs were represented. Substantial fund were raised from the auction of various cricket memorabilia items.

The Durban Festival in March 2010 provided the opportunity for a Melbourne Rotary club to combine with a local Durban one in a project worth USD 45021 to rebuild the ablution facilities used by both staff and students at the Ekuthuleni Primary School which is located a little more than half an hour outside the city of Durban.