Ki­wa­nis Club has suc­cess­ful year

Or­ga­ni­za­tion com­mits to con­tin­u­ing ded­i­ca­tion to many causes


The New­found­land chap­ter of the Ki­wa­nis club is known provincewide for its in­volve­ment and com­mit­ment to young mu­si­cal per­form­ers be­cause it has or­ga­nized mu­sic fes­ti­vals for more than 60 years in New­found­land and Labrador.

What is less known about the club and its mem­bers is their ded­i­ca­tion to fundrais­ing and do­na­tions to char­i­ties all over the world.

One of those clubs is lo­cated in Car­bon­ear, which serves com­mu­ni­ties from North River to Western Bay.

On Thurs­day, Oct. 3, the group held its an­nual in­stal­la­tion of of­fi­cers din­ner at Fong’s Restau­rant and Mo­tel — an event held to ap­point a new ex­ec­u­tive for the up­com­ing year.

Lo­cal com­mit­ments

Out­go­ing pres­i­dent John Walsh ad­dressed the crowd of some 35 peo­ple to de­scribe the past year. He re­ferred to the ef­forts of the club — which fea­tures 33 ac­tive mem­bers and one po­ten­tial mem­ber — as “another solid year.”

“This year we bud­geted for, and do­nated to, many projects within our ser­vice area,” Walsh ex­plained.

Do­na­tions were made to or­ga­ni­za­tions such as the Com­mu­nity Hand­i­capped As­so­ci­a­tion, Col­lege of the North At­lantic tur­key drive, the Kixx Coun­try toy tree, the Spe­cial Olympics and the Car­bon­ear pub­lic li­brary, among oth­ers. The club even pur­chased a wreath for the Royal Cana­dian Le­gion Me­mo­rial Day wreath lay­ing cer­e­mony for the first time in Car­bon­ear.

Ear­lier this month, the group held its an­nual ra­dio auc­tion with a new twist. The group mod­ern­ized the auc­tion and ex­panded to in­clude an online op­tion to place bids.

“This year we formed a com­mit­tee to look at re­struc­tur­ing the whole project,” Walsh said. “And the re­sults (were) very promis­ing.” Mu­sic Fes­ti­val The an­nual Ki­wa­nis re­gional mu­sic fes­ti­val has come a long way since its in­cep­tion in 1970, when the first com­pe­ti­tion took place at Davis Ele­men­tary (now closed). It was orig­i­nally only open to Car­bon­ear stu­dents.

Since it opened in 1998, the Sheila NaGeira The­atre in the Con­cep­tion Bay Re­gional Com­mu­nity Cen­tre has hosted the event, and serves stu­dents from Trin­ity, Con­cep­tion and Pla­cen­tia bays.

Ev­ery year the pres­i­dent-elect takes on the role of pres­i­dent of the fes­ti­val. This year John Col­bourne will or­ga­nize the show.

Another change this year will be Glenys Walsh — wife to past pres­i­dent John Walsh — tak­ing the role of ex­ec­u­tive sec­re­tary/co-or­di­na­tor of the event. She is not a Ki­wa­nis mem­ber, but vol­un­teers her time to many causes.

Some big causes

Dr. Eileen St. Croix from Gan­der is the lieu­tenant-gov­er­nor of the New­found­land di­vi­sion of Ki­wa­nis, and was the event’s guest speaker. She spoke about an in­ter­na­tional cause the or­ga­ni­za­tion is ded­i­cated to — the “Elim­i­nate project.” In co-or­di­na­tion with UNICEF, Ki­wa­nis is look­ing to end ma­ter­nal and neonatal tetanus.

Canada and the Caribbean Ki­wa­nis groups have part­nered up to col­lect do­na­tions and funds to put to­wards the project, but is an in­ter­na­tional fundrais­ing ef­fort for all Ki­wa­nis clubs around the world hop­ing to oblit­er­ate the disease world­wide.

The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion ex­plains this form of tetanus is caused dur­ing child­birth when the en­vi­ron­ment the de­liv­ery is tak­ing place is un­hy­gienic and not ster­ile. The disease can be lethal when ap­pro­pri­ate med­i­cal care is un­avail­able.

The Car­bon­ear club has com­mit­ted to do­nat­ing $5,000 over five years. It pro­vided some $1,700 to the cause this year.

The web­site for the project says al­most 60,000 moth­ers and new­borns lose their lives ev­ery year due to painful con­vul­sions and ex­treme sen­si­tiv­ity to light and touch.

The goal of Ki­wa­nis In­ter­na­tional is $110 mil­lion. New ex­ec­u­tive Mean­while, ev­ery Oc­to­ber, the club hon­ours a new group of peo­ple with the op­por­tu­nity to be­come part of the board of di­rec­tors, an of­fi­cer and part of dif­fer­ent com­mit­tees.

This year, Danny But­ton — who was last year’s pres­i­dent-elect — ac­cepted the pres­i­dent role from out­go­ing pres­i­dent John Walsh.

Last year’s vice-pres­i­dent, John Col­bourne, has moved into the pres­i­dent-elect post, while Bob Wheadon has taken the role of vice.

Long-serv­ing sec­re­tary, Judy Sy­monds, will re­tain her post, while the trea­surer role has been filled by Frank Par­sons.

The board of di­rec­tors con­sists of John Dunne, Hay­ward Blake, Dave Gill, Steve Ped­dle, Fred Stone and Judy Cameron.

New pres­i­dent Danny But­ton said the club is look­ing for­ward to another suc­cess­ful year.

Past-pres­i­dent John Walsh (right) sits at the head ta­ble with his wife Glenys dur­ing the Ki­wa­nis in­duc­tion of of­fi­cers din­ner. Glenys was re­cently named the ex­ec­u­tive sec­re­tary/co-or­di­na­tor of the Ki­wa­nis Mu­sic Fes­ti­val.

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