SIMPSON BAY, Sint Maarten – The Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle and The Rotary Club of St. Catharine’s Canada continue to support the efforts of the children at Player Development with the collecting of can tabs from aluminum cans.
The collecting of can tabs started back in 2015 when Rotary coaches from Canada visited Player Development and spoke about collecting can tabs to help people in need. The children liked the idea and it was agreed that they start to collect can tabs and visiting Canadian Rotarians would carry the tabs to Canada to be sold for recycling. With the money they raised from their efforts they decided they would like to purchase wheelchairs for those children in need of them here on St. Maarten. It was slow going at first, then the children hit on the idea of making collection cans for the can tabs and placing them at restaurants, it was difficult for the children to get them placed so they enlisted the help of Rotarians from the Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle who spend time with them once a month reading and helping with homework.
With this initiative after the passing of Hurricanes Irma and Maria a container of supplies was send from Canada which included eighteen wheelchairs, and a nineteenth one donated anonymously by a family.
In May 2018 Mid Isle presented thirty-two pounds of can tabs to Player Development, with the other can tabs collected by Player Development Canada were keen to send another wheelchair to St. Maarten. Up till now we have not found anyone requiring the twentieth wheelchair.
The children at Player Development were now really keen to become part of Rotary. In October 2018 they were chartered as a community based EarlyAct club for children aged 5-12 years, sponsored by The Rotary Club of St. Maarten-Mid Isle. They now needed an International Project and decided they would like to help the Oyster Bay Railroad Museum in Long Island restore Engine 35.
In April Mid Isle presented fifty pounds of can tabs to the Earlyact Club and the proceeds from these and others they have collected will go to help save and restore Engine 35. Mid Isle were helped by The Palms, Vesna, Avantika, Little Jerusalem, Wasabi Charlie, Chesterfield, Emilio’s, Jimbo’s (Odessa) and Hot Wings Restaurant, the Driftwood Bar and the Rotarians of Mid Isle.