Like so many other groups, the Inner Wheel Club of Retford’s activities have come to a standstill as far as meetings and events are concerned. They enjoyed their final meeting on 12th March. They celebrated the fact that their swimming team, in the Rotary Swimathon, had raised £360 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association and the swimmers were presented with their certificates. They enjoyed an amusing account of life as an Open University student studying English Literature given by Maureen Lilley, one of the members. At the age of 65, Maureen found that providing she completed the degree by the age of 80, she had plenty of time to study at a leisurely pace, a subject of interest to her, after a life devoted to nursing and its teaching. She made it quite clear that Bleak House and all its 1,067 pages, was her least favourite book.
The Inner Wheel year runs from July to June so at this time, the club is usually looking back over their activities and achievements for the year. Despite the lockdown, they still have a good list of what their members were involved with in different ways before March. They have volunteers donating and working for the Food Bank; Cedar House and Bluebell Wood hospices; working in charity shops and Aurora Wellbeing Centre; doing volunteer reading in schools and helping with St Vincent de Paul to make visits. They also are involved with knitting hats and pairs of comfort blankets for premature babies. Since last July the Retford club has raised almost £3,000 for different charities like Leonard Cheshire, Jessie’s Fund, local flood victims, Women’s Aid and this year had started an ongoing collection for Riding for the Disabled. They have also contributed £470 to a COVID-19 fund which is also ongoing and will soon be given to those in need.
During the last 11 weeks the club have had a ‘phone a friend’ activity so that no member is left without contact and a weekly news and fun activity sheet to keep in touch. One member, Marion, has been very involved in the making of face masks for fruit pickers and workers. Dani, the club’s youngest member, has been continuing to work with vulnerable children. Some members have produced wonderful knitted items like tea cosies, baby hats, blankets, baby jumpers and more. They have painted garden fences and furniture and sorted drawers, photos and cupboards, probably like many others.
The spirit of friendship which is so much part of the purpose of their club is alive and well for now and will continue into an unknown future, when they hope they will be able to meet up again. For further information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.