In spite of a weak economy or perhaps because of it, the annual Rotary Club of Abaco’s Bell Ringing was again a success. People, who could afford it, were generous enough to give. Through the efforts of the many Rotarians, Interactors and Rotaractors who rang the bell at the Christmas Festival, in front of Maxwell’s Supermarket, Abaco Groceries, Standard Hardware and Abaco Hardware, The Rotary Club of Abaco collected over $5,000.00.
The three weeks of Bell Ringing, which started the first week of December, were followed by two days of packing and distributing. Rotarians, often accompanied by their children, as well as family members or friends, showed up at Aldersgate Methodist Church to process the parcels in the afternoon of December 20 and the morning of December 21, filling over 150 boxes with dry and canned food, plus a chicken as a bonus. Boxes were then delivered throughout Abaco, from Sandy Point, Crossing Rocks, Cherokee Sound to the Central and North Abaco communities.
The Interact Club of Forest Heights Academy had collected extra food contained in what they call Boxes of Love, as well as toys for children that were wrapped in pink and blue paper. They were distributed with the food boxes to the needy families with children, adding a little something extra for the youth.
Members of the Club who distributed the parcels said that they encountered many desperate situations this year, with monetary problems added to emotional problems caused by the loss of a family member or sickness.
The 150 boxes were a blessing to many, but more food parcels would have been welcomed by many more people throughout the island, prompting the newly formed Rotaract Club’s members to start Bell Ringing for a few days until December 31 to start collecting money for next year.