SINCE 1915, THE Rotary Club of London (often known as the “Downtown Club”) has been an integral part of the fabric of our community, devoting time, talent and treasure to the betterment of our city and the world at large. Members of this service club have lived their philosophy of “service above self” and have been the change they wanted to see in the world.
Rotarians celebrated the Club’s 100th Anniversary in true Rotary fashion. They pledged $100,000 among 10 local and international Anniversary Projects. The renovation of Rotholme Women’s & Family Shelter’s Activity Room was one of them.
As a multi-purpose room, Rotholme’s Activity Room morphs constantly to serve as play room, staff training room, medical examination room and now, thanks to the generosity of the Rotary Club of London, and Bud and Gwen Gowan, also as a computer lab.
The lab allows clients computer and Internet access in an inviting space, which makes it easier to search for jobs, look for permanent housing, strengthen digital literacy skills, access information in a client’s native language, and complete homework assignments for school-aged children. It also helps clients stay connected with supportive family and friends who may not be local, but who play an important role in combatting feelings of isolation or despair, as clients journey towards a fresh start.
“We are blessed to count friends like Gwen and [the late] Bud Gowan, and the Rotary Club of London among our family of supporters and partners,” says Ericka Ayala Ronson, Director of Fundraising/Development at Mission Services of London. “Rotholme is a more welcoming place that can better assist clients in times of crisis because of their generosity.”