|Rotarians celebrating International Women's Day today are Ann Petherick (Wanganui), Sue Gardner (Wanganui North president), Sharon Duff (Wanganui), Helen Craig (Wanganui), Kate Smith (Wanganui president) and Eileen Ng (Daybreak president)|
Pharmacist Sue Gardner is Wanganui North president, UCOL lecturer Kate Smith is Wanganui president, and businesswoman Eileen Ng is Daybreak president.
The Rotarians are a mix of retired, business and professional women and men, all sharing their skills in the community.
But 25 years ago a few clubs started accepting women as members, and now 16 per cent of the 1.2 million Rotary members around the world are women.
In Wanganui, Ann Petherick, Marion Davenport, Liz McPherson and Jill Stegmann take the Reading in Schools programme at Wanganui East School.
"We assist the children with one-on-one reading and it gives them confidence to read in a relaxed atmosphere," Mrs Petherick said.
The programme, which was co-ordinated by Rotarian Jack Kale, has now been picked up by other areas. The list of community projects by Rotarians continues to grow.
They sold the bricks with names on the Majestic Square forecourt and the Westmere Walkway is still being worked on by the Wanganui club. The club also started the River Walkway from the Cobham Bridge, which was taken over by the council.
In 2007 she took resources to the Children's Centre for Happiness orphanage in Cambodia then cycled 600km with 19 others to raise funds for Oxfam. Mrs Graham also teaches literacy and numeracy at the Whanganui Prison, and in May she will chaperone a group of exchange students to Wanganui's sister city in Japan, Nagaizumi.
If you are interested in joining a Rotary club in Wanganui, call Ann Petherick, 3477534, or Kate Smith 3458305/0292422440