Rotary Club Prague International
RCPI News and Stories
Climate Change is high on the agenda, particularly with the Sustainable Innovation Forum in Paris taking place in early December. Our very own Rotarian, Jonathan Wootliff, presented "Climate Change - The issue for the 21st Century" at a recent meeting of RCPI.
He explained the fundamentals behind climate change and also why the issue is not to be ignored. 'This is not about saving nature, this is about saving ourselves' said Jonathan as the audience listened with great interest to the issue as he explained it. His optimism was apparent as he gave examples of how we have already adapted and changed. less through individual actions 'such as turning off a lightbulb' but more through Government policy changes which create  significant movement. Jonathan is not adverse to a lively discussion on matters such as nuclear energy and made it clear that the very fact that we are having a discussion is a valuable and important part of highlighting an issue which was described as 'an uncomfortable truth' by Al Gore.
Jonathan also commented on the progress made in the Czech Republic in terms of legislation, adherence to the agreed protocols and public awareness.
Jonathan's presentation can be downloded in PDF format HERE. Click Sustainable Innovation Forum 2015 for more information about the world forum which starts in December.
Rotary International is a global organisation with over 1.2m members and there are many aspects of recruiting, maintaining, encouraging and supporting members which are not always apparent to all members. Irena Brichter presented to the members at our recent meeting the history and structure of Rotary and some of the aspects of the organisation relating to membership. Her presentation also focused on the Rotary Foundation, a charitable and parallel organisation to Rotary International which gives grants for projects all over the world. Irena commented on the vibrancy of Rotary Club Prague International and how this club in particular is continually attracting more members - she described it as a role model. Irena also explained what a Rotary Moment is: Wear your Rotary Pin and it is almost certain that someone during the day will ask you what it is. This is an opportunity to explain in a few words the great charitable work which Rotary does and how much fun one can have doing it!
Irena's Rotary International presentation is available for you to download in PDF format HERE  and the Rotary Foundation Presentation HERE
Jiří Richter, Executive President of SANANIM received a cheque for CZK 250,000 from Rotary Club Prague international at the recent club meeting. RCPI member Nelly Jenicek together with Jiří Richter explained the work of Sananim and some of the extraordinary successes the charity has achieved in the 25 years of operation.
RCPI club member Naomi Sullivan-Callender co-organised the fundraising gala to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Sananim which was not only an outstanding evening of celebration but also raised such a significant sum for the charity. Jiří thanked RCPI and Naomi in particular for her exceptional efforts which made the event possible.
Founded in 1990, SANANIM is now one of the largest non-governmental organizations in the Czech Republic that provides complex services in the area of prevention, treatment and re-socialization of non-alcoholic drug addictions. The 25th Anniversary Gala was supported by many companies and individuals who gave donations and their time to make this event such a success.  
"We have not only increased the awareness of SANANIM and their work but have also have raised a substantial sum for this amazing organisation",  said Naomi Sullivan-Callender, co-chair of the event.  “It was a thrill to experience such a dynamic and exciting event.  It’s an honour to work with our friends at SANANIM to celebrate their great success.  This event would not have been possible without the support of so many individuals and organisations.”
The other stars were all our guests who bid for auction items and pledged donations with great verve and generosity. 
Pictures of the event can be viewed HERE and of the cheque presentation HERE
Kateřina Šimonová joined RCPI Rotarians and friends at one of our recent club meetings. Kateřina is a human rights lawyer working for the Czech humanitarian charity Organizace pro pomoc uprchlíkům (OPU). The organisation is dedicated to helping refugees and foreigners in the Czech Republic by providing free legal and social counseling to its clients. OPU also,organizes educational activities for professionals and the general public.
Kateřina explained to RCPI that whilst the refugee situation in the Czech Republic may not be in the media every day, there are significant challenges and issue with how refugees are being treated. Over 10,000 refugees are in Czech detention centres. Whilst the majority wish to move from the Czech republic to other countries such as Germany approximately 1200 want to settle in the Czech republic. A lack of access to legal counseling and limited knowledge of their rights means that their detention is often longer and more harsh than it should be. OTP provides free legal services so that the refugees and foreigners are treated fairly and in line with Czech and European Laws.
The members of RCPI thanked Kateřina for her very passionate and informative presentation and the financial proceeds of the meeting's collection was given to OPU to assist with their work.
Dear Rotary Friends,

In my last letter I informed you of news that there were 2 cases of child polio in the Ukraine. Our friend Rasťo Maďar from RC Ostrava City sent me clarification and comforting news which I wish to share with you:

Dear Governor, dear Vadimir,
I would like to follow up on your recent District Governor letter no. 3, which spoke of the infectious child polio. In my professional capacity, I focus on infectious diseases, vaccines and Epidemiology, and further more I travel to Africa and Asia on medical humanitarian missions, so I follow very closely the process of eradication.
Just a few days ago, the World Commission on Child Polio Eradication Certification confirmed that the virus of the contagious child polio type 2 has definitely been eradicated from our planet.
This means that there remain two last virus types: 1 and 3. Til now, the last occurence of type 3 was in Nigeria in November 2012 and type 1 is circulating only in 2 countries of the world: Afghanistan and Pakistan. Unfortunately there, armed terrorists have fired on vaccination healthcare workers and some have been killed.
The recent cases of child polio in the Ukraine were caused by a weakened vaccine from an old generation of live vaccine applied by spoon into the mouth, a method not used in our country anymore. These cases were not an occurence of the wild polio virus, which happily no longer exists in Europe, and there was no epidemic. In this geographic area, the solution is to use non-live vacine as we do in our country or to increase the vaccination rate (still using the traditional method – by spoon)to pre war levels.
The eradication certification of type 2 polio virus means that there is no longer a need to vaccinate against this type and to change triple strength vaccine (OPV 1,2,3) to a double strength (OPV 1,2).The future eradication of the last 2 types would be a great success for the human race, which would mean the deletion of vaccination against infectious child polio from the vaccination chart in all countries of the world. As we all know, this has only happened in the case of one disease – dangerous true smallpox (varioly).
It is expected that total eradication of the remaining 2 types of poliovirus will be achieved in the next few years and it will be a great success for the whole Rotary movement.
I mainly wanted to point out that in the Ukraine, we are not talking about a real epidemic of child polio cases even though the clinical cases created by the weakened virus vaccine could have further serious repercussions. There is no danger of a great epidemic even though there is a civil war on going and there is no change in the European status of the eradication of poliomyelitis.
Sincere wishes,
Doc. MUDr. Rastislav Maďar, Ph.D., FRCPS

On the occasion of World Polio Day (23rd October, 2015), we are asked to make a contribution to The Rotary Foundation because for this Day, as an exception, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will triple, not double a matching contribution. Individual as well as club contributions can be sent directly to (at the same time informing our Finance Chair, Vladimir Jandik) or to the District account (account number is on page XIV of the Rotary District Directory, VS is the RI club number with the specific symbol 99).

On 23.10.2015 at 23.30 you have watch a direct broadcast from World Polio Day on:

„...........the unpleasant Syrian refugee situation is the lithmus test for world compassion.........“ says General Secretary Rotary International John Hewko. „ Rotarians throughout the world are deeply affected by this migrant crisis which is now developing in many parts of the world“ which the UN have stated is the worst crisis in recent history. „Rotary is following the situation carefully, says Hewko, we know that our members have a natural desire to negotiate, as well as lessen the suffering and uncertainty of these families and people. We ask you to act as Rotarians have acted in more than 100 years..... use your professional knowledge and experience, your contacts and mobilise your local communities to offer the appropriate help and financial means to resolve this humanitarian crisis.
Rotarians can donate money to alleviate the suffering to RI partners like ShelterBox This organisation works together with other agencies so that they can distribute help in the required areas. ShelterBox is also working with communities in Greece to offer help to the homeless migrants.

Our friend Jozef Klement from RC Zvolen has created a challenge to our clubs. Assistant District Governors will be in touch with clubs to let them know more about this challenge.
As the month of November is about focus on support and help through The Rotary Foundation, with our donations to the TRF, we are helping the needy.

Be a gift to the world!

The gala was a tremendous success and not only celebrated Sananim's 25th year but also raised substantial funds for the charity. Over 140 guests attended at the Intercontinental Hotel in Prague and enjoyed a delicious meal prepared by award winning chef Pavel Buchwaldek and danced the night away. Jiří Richter, Executive President of Sananim made a passionate speech thanking the guests for their support and stressing the importance of the work of Sananim. Founded in 1990, SANANIM is now one of the largest non-governmental organizations in the Czech Republic that provides complex services in the area of prevention, treatment and re-socialization of non-alcoholic drug addictions.
The 25th Anniversary Gala was supported by many companies and
individuals who gave donations and their time to make this event such a success. "This event would not have been possible without the support of so many individuals and organisations" said Naomi Sullivan who coordinated the event. "We have not only increased the awareness of SANANIM and their work but have also have raised a substantial sum for the organisation".
An auction of donated prizes was held during the event and raised tens of thousands for the charity. Two etchings by the famous artist Martin Sladky have also been donated and are now available for auction. Click HERE for more details.
The final amount raised by the Gala event will be revealed in a ceremony where a cheque will be presented to Sananim.
See more pictures by browsing the RCPI Photo Gallery
An excellent collection of pictures is ready for you to view on SNAPFISH
Click HERE to go to the library of stories where we chronicle the activities of the Rotary Club Prague International. You can also subscribe to our email Bulletin which is a compendium of the stories.

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A welcome from Petr Smejcky - President 2015/16
Dear Members, Friends and prospective Members,,
I am thrilled to be able to be able to greet you all in my capacity as President 2015/16 of RCPI. Our club has an outstanding reputation which is nothing other than the sum of the energy, drive and commitment which our Members and Friends have shown over the past months and years.  New members have joined us bringing a wide range of interest and talents to our club. My main focus is to give everyone a chance to participate and contribute to the club and the charities we support in whatever way they can.
If you are interested in Rotary and joining our club then come along to one of our meetings where you will see that we are a group of fun loving individuals with a common aim of "doing good and having fun". ROTARY is a great way to meet like minded people from diverse backgrounds, professions and cultures.
My motto for the year: All for one, one for all
Petr Smejcky
RC Prague International

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