In the fall of 2012, Welland Rotary became aware of a dire situation in Candelaria , Philippines, in which aid with water sanitation, education, and the need for occupation help was desperately needed. Doug Johnson, of the Welland club, went to the Philippines and met with Arman Lirio of the Rotary Club of Candelaria to evaluate the situation and to set about correcting it.
With the help of funds from Welland Rotary, Rotary District 7090, the Rotary Foundation, and other Rotary clubs initiated an ambitious project. They provided 5 High Schools with training equipment and supplied 23 elementary schools with up-to-date scientific and social media apparatus to enable them to further their education. In addition, since clean water (which all of us here take for granted) was absolutely essential they built a water pump station, 3 water systems and installed useable toilets for the schools. Because many of the students did not have much of a future after school, this team concentrated on occupational skills, such as baking, sewing, and auto repair to facilitate their transition the outside world.
However, the work there is far from over. The team is now in the process of providing 62,000 students, in 7 schools in low income areas, with educational with programs. To date, Welland Rotary, under the direction of Doug and Armin, together with the other members of the Rotary family, have transferred nearly $500,000 in aid to the Philippines. Hopefully, this will make life a bit easier for the people of Candelaria.