ROTARIANS in Westbury have raised £1,400 for the relief effort in earthquake-devastated Haiti, thanks to the generosity of the town’s shoppers.
After the earthquake measuring 7.0 magnitude, struck the caribbean island on Tuesday 12th January, the Westbury Rotary Club decided to organise an immediate collection on the following weekend.
Rotarians took collections on Friday morning on the High Street and Saturday outside Morrisons, and raised an incredible £1,430.
Rotarian Bob Lee, who helped organise the collections said, “People were very generous as you can see from the amount that we managed to collect. It was a very good total for the length of time that we did it.”
The earthquake killed up to 200,000 people and has left an estimated 1.5 million homeless.
Bob added, “The earthquake happened on the Tuesday and on the Wednesday we had a meeting where we decided we should do a collection. By Friday we had managed to fill a rota so we did a collection for three hours, and on Saturday we had permission from Morrisons to collect there.
“It was excellent, it went very well and we are very pleased. We’re very thankful to the people of Westbury and the area.”
The club has decided to donate the money to two charities associated with the Rotary Club; ShelterBox and Water Survival Box.
ShelterBoxes contain a durable 10 person tent, blankets, ground sheets, water purification supplies and tools, as well as a children’s pack, amongst other items.
Water Survival Boxes include a container to collect water, mugs, cooking utensils, anti-septic spray, cotton, needles and thread and basic tools, tarpaulin and bungee cords.
Both types of boxes are held in reserve by each charity, ready to be dispatched immediately, and their contents can be tailored for the specific needs of recipients in an area.
Bob said, “We thought that these boxes provided the immediate relief needed, so we contributed towards that. ShelterBox tents have already been used as hospitals in Haiti.
“The main thing is that we decided action needed to be taken straight away. A lot of people were saying to us ‘Thank goodness you’re doing something’.”
The money raised will pay for two ShelterBoxes, which cost £490 on average, with the remainder going towards Water Survival Boxes, which typically cost £150 to assemble.
Westbury Rotary Club president, Jim Heath said. “The amount collected is a massive tribute to the generosity of the people of Westbury and the surrounding villages in the wake of this terrible disaster and the desperate need for help in Haiti.”