ROTARY International recently made a presentation outlining its contribution to Basingstoke Deane.

The 'Supporting Our Communities' presentation was attended by volunteers and guests invited to note the club's past successes and future projects.

One of the project highlights has been the eradication of Polio initiative launched in 1985 when 350,000 new cases were reported annually in 125 countries.

As result, in cooperation with the World Health Organisation and UNICEF, nearly three billion children, spanning 122 countries, were vaccinated against the disease at total expense of $2.2 billion.

The efforts scaled down polio cases by 99.9 per cent, with just Afghanistan and Pakistan reporting the presence of the wild poliovirus still.

Basingstoke embraced Rotary's Shoebox Scheme, with local schools and businesses working together for the common good of the community.

Over the past decade, this scheme has brought "Something Special" for Christmas to 250,000 children, with 15,000 boxes sourced from Basingstoke.

In the past year, Basingstoke Deane financed three Shelterboxes for Gaza, each containing a tent, cooking utilities, water filtration equipment and tools to promote self-reliance.

Consultant cardiologist Andrew Bishop explains the use of the cardiac equipment supplied by Basingstoke Deane Rotary.Consultant cardiologist Andrew Bishop explains the use of the cardiac equipment supplied by Basingstoke Deane Rotary. (Image: Supplied)

Another highlight was from Dennis Vystavkin of CCLL The Helping Hand For Ukraine. The charity, initially established for the Chernobyl-affected victims, now supports Ukrainians affected by the war.

The support includes petrol generators that suffice for small utilities, such as schools and medical centres. Thus far, Basingstoke Deane supplied five generators to the cause, funded partially by the 2023 Festival of Transport.

Eighty per cent of the people assisted by the Rotary are local to Basingstoke, extending support through finance and volunteering to nearly 40 regional organisations.

Luke Brashier, Recycle Bike Hub co-founder, detailed how Rotary's support helped raise funds for Naomi House and Jacksplace.

Consultant cardiologist Andrew Bishop spoke about the £60,000 worth of equipment funded for the Cardiology department at Basingstoke and North Hants Hospital by the Rotary.

This year, the annual Basingstoke Festival of Transport supported the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance, lauded by Jill McDonagh from the service.