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Rotary International President says Cyprus sets example
2006-01-04 12:32:28

Nicosia, Jan 4 (CNA) – The President of Rotary International, Carl-Wilhelm Stenhammar, in Cyprus on a one-day visit, has said that Rotary Clubs on the island are an excellent example of how people can improve understanding.

Speaking at a press conference here Wednesday, Stenhammar said he was in Cyprus as part of his intercity programme of meetings around the world, will meet later this evening all 18 clubs of Cyprus, including two Turkish Cypriot clubs, to discuss what happens on the ground.

This morning he met Mayor of Nicosia Michalakis Zambelas, also a Rotarian, and this afternoon he will inaugurate the Cyprus Rotary Umbilical Cord Blood Bank at the Karaiskakion Clinic of the Makarios Hospital in Nicosia, that was established from a 100.000 Cyprus pound donation, raised by local Rotary clubs to mark the organisation’s centenary in 2005.

Stenhammar said Rotary International is the world’s largest service organization that promotes peace and is active in 170 countries with 1.2 billion members worldwide and 1029 districts.

This is the first visit to Cyprus by a Rotary International President since 1999. The Rotary District 2450, which includes Cyprus and eight other countries in the region, has a Cypriot District Governor this year, Ioannis Strongylos.

Cyprus this year will host the District Conference for about 1.500 Rotarians from Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Bahrain, Dubai, Sudan, Armenia and Georgia that will take place in Limassol on April 27-May 1.

“At a time when religious, ethnic and political differences occur frequently around the world, Rotary’s role is very significant”, said Stenhammar, adding that “Rotary Clubs on the island of Cyprus are an excellent example of how people can improve understanding when joined together in a common goal of humanitarianism”.

The first Rotary Club in Cyprus was established in 1938 in Nicosia. Islandwide it has a multinational membership of about 900 Rotarians and examples of its projects on the island include housing for the aged and those suffering from Alzheimer’s, a school for deaf children, scholarships for students, purchase of medical equipment, international medical aid missions and organization of medical seminars and other programmes to benefit local communities.

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