The Rotary Club International President-elect Barry Rassin in Kampala a head of the 1st the first Rotary East African project fair. He is also expected to officially open the fair, launch the construction of Sam Owori Vijana Poa Village and commission a vocational institution in Buikwe.
The event slated to take place at Imperial Resort Hotel in Entebbe is expected to partners from countries such as United States, Europe, India and other parts of Africa. It is organised Rotary district 9211, which covers Uganda and Tanzania and 9212 which covers Kenya, South Sudan and Eritrea.
During the press conference at Sheraton Hotel on Thursday afternoon, Rassin hailed rotary clubs in Africa for gender diversity, saying this has in turn improved the delivery of services in different spheres such as health, disease prevention and treatment, maternal and child health.
He also hailed youth for their engagement in rotary activities saying currently, there are about 116 Rotaract clubs in Uganda.
“I congratulate Uganda; you have 116 rotaract clubs here which is exceptional; it’s one of the highest in the whole world. This implies that there are a lot of young people who understand rotary and they are willing to give back to communities,” said Rassim.
Kenneth Mugisha, the Rotary district 9211 noted that the rotary fair starts today up to February 12 and the international partners in attendance will partner with local rotary clubs on how best they can serve communities.
He said some local rotary clubs have always failed to benefit from the global grants because they lack international partners. “…to apply for a global grant, you must need an international partner; most of the clubs in our district which is Uganda and Tanzania, 70% were participating in global grants because they didn’t know how to identify international partners. By bringing the first Rotary East African project fair, you are bringing international partners at our door steps so that the local clubs in the region come and sign MOUs with them,” said Mugisha.
Mike Sebalu, the organising chairman of the fair said local rotary clubs will be trained on how to benefit much from the rotary fund. He added: “Currently we get international grant worth $3.5m (sh12.6b) per year but we would like to expand it up to $35m (about 126b).The only limiting factor has been lack of partnerships and linkages with international partners.”
noted that through the partnerships, a lot of money is sent to the country to help in different project being undertaken. He said the increased funding would also help boost diversification of the projects.