District 920, composed of 5 clubs in Reunion Island and 3 clubs in Madagascar had the privilege to welcome IPP IIW Mrs Charlotte De Vos, Board Director Nelly Bratoeva, Past Board Director Ashnadelle Hilmy Mortagy to their XXIVth Conference which took place at the Museum Stella Matutina, a cultural center located at Saint-Leu, Reunion Island from 4th to 6th of May. Chairman D 73 and other members from FAMAT also joined us for the event.
The Opening Ceremony started with a parade of each club wearing a special color identifying each of them, followed by presentation of flags and national anthems, starting by Nigeria, in honor of our IIW President.
To finish a touching part of this ceremony was the live interpretation of our International Inner Wheel song, “Standing together- Inner Wheel”.
The official opening of the Conference was highlighted by IPP IIW Charlotte De Vos’ speech in which key points were mutual Respect and Harmony between Inner Wheel and Rotary as partners in Friendship and Service. This speech had an immediate impact on the audience and consequently, two Rotarian ladies who attended the event decided to join Inner Wheel and work for both organizations.
IIW President Oluyemisi Alatise sent her theme scarf to be presented to Chairman Jasmine Sery by IIW Board Director Nelly Bratoeva and IIW Past Board Director Ashnadelle Hilmy Mortagy.
Business session in the morning included multimedia presentations of each club’s activities which impressed and inspired our IIW members and guests. This pleasant kaleidoscope of dynamic reports underlined each club’s social projects “touching hearts” in our communities. The afternoon session was devoted to presenting District 920 projects of the year that were highlighted by different speakers:
• Purchase of medicines and medical equipment for ‘Terre Rouge France’s mission for women in Diego Suarez Madagascar. Dr Nicolet, President of this association presented a report about the mission and Inner Wheel’s contributions in the treatment of women’s gynecological illnesses, such as fistula and breast cancer.
• Support to Run Handi Move, an Association which offers the opportunity to people with reduced mobility carried by volunteers in “joëlettes” to discover the beauty of the island. A volunteer carrier and a reduced mobility woman carried in a “joëlette” gave presentations about their real live experience with Run Handi Move.
• Organization of a recreational day at an outdoors community center in the mountains for young abused mothers living in 3 Welcome Shelters.
The manager of one of the shelters sang an inspiring rendition of testimony written by abused young mothers.
In the evening, all the clubs of the district participated in a Talent show featuring colorful artistic and cultural folkloric aspects of Reunion and Madagascar. Club members rehearsed their dances and songs for several months in the spirit of teamwork as shown in their wonderfully choreographed performances and their enthusiastic participation.
The finale of the talents’ night was a pharaonic classic dance performed by IIW Past Board Director and Editor/Media Manager Ashnadelle Hilmy Mortagy from Egypt, that I planned as a well-kept surprise for my District. The background onstage showed images of ancient and modern Egypt.
Keynote speakers: IIW Board Director Nelly Bratoeva spoke about Inner Wheel Extention.and IIW Past Board Director Ashnadelle Hilmy Mortagy who spoke about Empowering women through education.
The Chairman’s report gave the 2016- 2017 overview of District 920. Coffee Table Book copies were presented by Chairman Jasmine to all club Presidents on behalf of IIW President Oluyemisi Alatise.
The results of District Committee elections were announced and the incoming Executive Committee presented. The Gala Dinner became a fest of continuity in Inner Wheel friendship. IPP IIW President Charlotte De Vos who chaired the meeting, presented the IIW President Oluyemisi Alatise’s banner to Chairman Jasmine Sery, Incoming Chairman Lova Rakotomalala and Rotary District 9220 Governor Dominique Pota. She also presented District 920’s collar to the Incoming Chairman
Wonderful memories of inspiring words and an evening of true friendship will long be remembered.