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Programme Action. Education- Mary’s Meals 2012/13 and 2018

Mary’s Meals 2018

It was decided to again support Mary’s Meals as members had gained much satisfaction from collecting goods knowing that many children in Africa would be able to attend school, some for the first time, and to enjoy a hot meal.

At the same time we were contacted, on Facebook, by a member of the public, who had in her possession a number of brand new back packs as well as sweat shirts and fleeces that had become available after a school changed it’s uniform.   Although we couldn’t send the clothing to Mary’s Meals contact with RAFT (Refugee Aid from Taunton) charity through a club member enabled us to send the new clothing to Syria via that charity.  We filled 25 back packs and sent another 25 empty bags to Mary’s Meals charity.   That was good news and even better news is that ‘member of the public’ is now a member of SI Bilston & District.

Mary’s Meals project is completed -backpacks on the way to Malawi. 2014

Past President Elaine with then President Tina and club members at the end of the day.

One of Immediate Past President Elaine’s chosen charities was Mary’s Meals. The Charity provides a daily meal in a place of education. Chronically poor chidren are attracted to the classroom where they can gain a basic education that provides an escape route from poverty.  The vision is that every child receives a daily meal in school. Very often the parents of the children supported cannot afford to buy even basic items such as pens, notebooks or even suitable clothes for their children to wear to school. The Charity asks for back packs to be filled with everyday items that can be sent to children who really need them.

Elaine challenged members to collect back packs from any source including charity shops and to find the cheapest article.  To date we have collected over 74 bags the cheapest of which was 50p!  The idea is to mark the 70th birthday of Bilston Club.  Now the bags have been secured members are providing goodies to fill them.  It’s great fun finding items of clothing knowing how well they will be received by children who have very little. This work will continue through 2013/2014.

A selection of the back packs already collected.

Six members of the Programme Action Committee gathered to sort through and categorise the items of clothing.  Club members have been most generous with their donations and as a result we are left with only shorts and sandals to make up the clothing for 74 back packs.  Now we are collecting items of stationery in the hope that bags will be packed in July and sent to Mary’s Meals in Scotland.

On 13th August 18 members gathered to sort and size clothes together with many stationery items in order to fill the 77 back packs we had collected.  The day went quickly with much laughter.  In true Bilston fashion the activity soon became competitive but that helped to complete the task.  At the end of the day we loaded 10 sacks ready for the courier to collect the following day.  We waved off the sacks at the start of their long journey to Malawi via Glasgow.