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Cor-Niel van Rooyen
Posted: 25 July 2013

Cor-Niel van Rooyen was one of fifty-one participants who attended the Rotary Youth Leadership Programme in 2012. He was part of Team Silver.

Cor-Niel was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Plimmerton and has proved time and time again to have been a very good choice. He is continually ‘giving back’ to the community and it’s always a pleasure to work alongside him. Here’s his story after the devastating storm that hit the Wellington region on 26 June.

When disaster hits there is the inevitable mess that occurs. Most grumble, and rightly so, at the damage caused and the disruption to their everyday life. There is a sense of loss which is often the subject in social media interactions or conversations around the water cooler. Often some are affected more others. In the midst of the difficulty a question often remains unasked.

What is the opportunity to help my community?

The members of the Plimmerton Rotary Club took their gloves, chainsaws and trailers to answer this question recently. After the storm, which broke records and trees, there was ample wood lying around causing a nuisance. So, in between the unofficial union prescribed breaks with biscuits and tea, all the logs were chopped up and gathered to be carted away. In the process the team was able to help out ‘The Lodge’ in Pauatahanui with the clean-up.

The chance to make a difference did not stop there and the wood is now being stored and dried for later use as firewood. It is sold at a very reasonable price to help keep homes warm in the cold winter.

It would make sense if the story was to end there and fortunately it doesn’t. The proceeds from the firewood sales are funnelled back into projects that help to make our community a better place to live. In this way, what would have otherwise been a disaster is soon turned around into an opportunity for good.

The question still remains relevant now and we can gain much in finding an answer. The Rotary Club comes up with endless ways to help our local community and the reward of rising above circumstances in fellowship with others truly adds value and fulfilment to life. I would encourage you to ask the same question.

A chance to lend a hand

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