Newsletter 132 December 2020


Christmas greetings to all our Members and others reading this newsletter, including the many invited guests and friends who have joined us at our Wednesday breakfast meetings since we went ‘virtual’.
Although we are still unable to meet face to face after nine months of restrictions, we have managed to maintain a lively agenda of weekly club meetings and other diverse social activities during that period. 
Unexpectedly, we have turned the difficulties of the Covid pandemic to our advantage, using Zoom. Our attendances have been higher than previously, and members and friends in distant locations have been able to join us regularly from their kitchens and living rooms. Notably, we’ve enjoyed the regular company of members from Prague International Rotary Club. And we’ve kept in touch with those of our members who have not been able to join us on Zoom, and look forward to the day when we can meet up again face to face.
Regular readers of our Newsletter will be aware that we’ve been putting money that would otherwise be spent on breakfast at our meetings into our charity account. This has allowed us to make regular donations to local and international charities to support those in need. One notable project we’ve been pleased to support recently is Prague International’s relief work in Beirut, through their Club’s project- Disaster Aid Europe. 
Looking forward, we are eagerly anticipating a Christmas Special at our meeting on 23rd December, where our MC, Philip Bowry, promises a programme of delightful seasonal jocularity. Don’t miss it! And on the evening of Friday 08 January we are hosting a (virtual) ‘welcome to the new year’ Black-Tie Charity Fundraising Dinner with local comedian, radio and TV star, Dr Phil Hammond, as our guest entertainer. We look forward to seeing you there!
Merry Christmas everyone, and a Happy New Year!
John Whittaker (President)

Black Tie Dinner with a difference!

Looking for a fun evening after the Christmas festivities are over. We are holding a Black Tie Charity Dinner hosted online to raise funds for See Change operating as Julian House providing support to those who are socially excluded and other Rotary Charities.
Join us online at 6.45pm on Friday 8th January 2021 (and don't forget to arrange your own food and drink). We will feature comic relief with Dr Phil Hammond a practicing NHS doctor, author, and Fringe Festival performer. Tickets £10 per head or more generous donations. To find out more email RCBBREAKFAST@GMAIL.COM


Let's Grow Together to End Polio Now

The Purple4Polio campaign has been used by Rotary in Great Britain and Ireland to create awareness of the ongoing need to raise money to continue the Polio Eradication programme which began in the 1980s and for which Rotary and Rotarians worldwide have raised so much money. Over the last few years, Bristol Breakfast Rotary Club and other Rotary clubs in Bristol have planted purple crocuses in many parts of the city including Durdham Downs, Castle Park and in the grounds of Temple Church.

Despite the extraordinary challenges that face all of us during 2020, we were still able to celebrate World Polio Day on 24th October this year and help raise awareness to ‘End Polio Now’.

Whilst it has not been possible to engage with one group and complete a mass planting activity as has been the case in previous years, we have been able to enlist the support of a number of organizations this year.

As a result, we have gone some way in raising that awareness with many people across Bristol, particularly younger people – a key ingredient if we are to maintain our focus and goal of supporting the eradication of this infectious disease across the world; for it is young people who have embraced this initiative this year and have actively helped to plant the 4,000 crocus bulbs we have sourced.

Our thanks go to the following organisations;

Firstly our headline charity this year, The Green House, and the planting support from Sue Santi and Una Tracy

For more details about the fantastic work of the Green House, go to:

The Bridge Learning Campus - The students together with Liz Hackling Assistant Headteacher, Ally Bigwood, School Business Manager and Ray Cockram, Learning Mentor at the Bridge Learning Campus

Whitehall Primary School - The Primary Age Children, Lesley Broom EYFS Lead and Lynsey Mckean, Outdoor Learning Lead & Reception Teacher at Whitehall Primary School

Bristol 9th Rainbows and Brownies and the support of Wendy Hughes


Brownies and Rainbows have been learning about the importance of Rotary’s End Polio Now campaign and they are helping to communicate this to their families and friends.

Each individual Brownie or Rainbow member has decorated a plant pot with the words End Polio Now and a Rotary Roundel in which they have planted Purple Crocus bulbs purchased and provided by Bristol Breakfast Rotary Club to raise funds for the End Polio Now campaign.

The pack’s Brown Owl told Rotarian Tony Hughes how well the session had worked “The Brownies were told of the similarities between Rotary and the Guide movement, in particular,

  • That both were international organisations.
  • How Rotary’s main motto which is “Service above Self” is so similar to the Brownie law which includes the words “A Brownie Guide thinks of others before themselves…”

Being taught about the polio virus during the Covid-19 pandemic was particularly poignant. They were thankful that Polio has a vaccine and

  • shown how this is administered.
  • They were also told that when a child receives their life-saving polio drops on mass polio immunisation days, their little finger is painted with a purple dye so it is clear they have received their polio vaccine. To help them to appreciate the fact that they have had the vaccine, they all had their little fingers painted purple.”

We also thank the support of St. Paul’s Adventure Playground with special thanks to Sue Santi

St. Pauls Adventure Playground run by APE Project CIC

Finally and not forgetting those in residential care at this most difficult time, we have bulbs planted at Collingwood Residential Care Home and we thank Wendy Pullin and her team for their support.

If you would like to know more about Rotary would like to contribute to the End Polio Campaign please just get in touch.

Further information

When Rotary and its partners launched the Global Polio Eradication Initiative in 1988, there were 350,000 cases of polio in 125 countries every year. We’ve made great progress against the disease since then. Today, polio cases have been reduced by 99.9 percent, and just two countries continue to report cases of wild poliovirus: Afghanistan and Pakistan. And we remain committed to the end.

With polio nearly eradicated, Rotary and its partners must sustain this progress and continue to reach every child with the polio vaccine. Without full funding and political commitment, this paralyzing disease could return to polio-free countries, putting children everywhere at risk. Rotary has committed to raising US$50 million each year to support global polio eradication efforts. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has pledged to match that 2-to-1, for a total yearly contribution of $150 million. 

Rotary has contributed more than $2.1 billion to ending polio since 1985


About Rotary

Rotary is a global network of 1.2 million neighbours, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who unite and take action to create lasting change in communities around the globe. For more than 110 years, Rotary’s people of action have used their passion, energy, and intelligence to improve lives through service. From promoting literacy and peace to providing clean water and improving health care, Rotary members are always working to better the world.







 Christmas Breakfast

 Wednesday 23rd December 2020

This year it will be via Zoom and will take the form of a Variety Show

Many international and home-grown stars will be appearing; there will be audience participation, grand entertainment

 & Lots of fun and prizes !!!

To help create an upbeat atmosphere, please could we all wear something that CATCHES THE EYE like a hat, pretty dress, bow tie

Please can you let Willem, our Secretary, know if you will be able to join us so that the necessary advanced technology and planned programme can be implemented?

 Very much looking forward to seeing you on the day.

 With every kind wish, Philip, MC