Our District, along with District 9520 has a wonderful opportunity to work together with DIK (Donations In Kind) on a project which will benefit many disadvantaged communities.   DIK Chair, David Cockshell, has been in conversations about what is to become a significant project involving the Royal Adelaide Hospital and Rotary. Planning is in its initial stages, but don’t let that stop you from getting ready to help. 
There is a key position for a Rotarian with excellent coordination and communication skills to head up this project.  We will also need many hands as the project progresses.  I encourage you to read further, to discover how you can be involved.
A Letter from David Cockshell
As Chair of the Donations in Kind (DIK) program, I met with the key directors of Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) regarding the potential provision of surplus equipment from the old RAH. The scope of goods that may be available for donation is yet to be determined. It is expected to take till Feb/March 2017 to work through the following steps to define this scope:
  • What goods go to the new RAH
  • What goods are needed in regional hospitals
  • What can be sold
  • What are the legal controls willing to make available.
This will take quite an effort to finalise but indications at the meeting are that it may well include 700 electric hospital beds, bedside cupboards, overway units etc. from the wards. Allowing for some other goods from other parts of the hospital, this would indicate something like 25 containers (40’) in volume.
RAH representatives were impressed with Rotary’s DIK organization, governance and our way of working with many organisations in getting donated goods to needy communities overseas. To manage liability risk, RAH indicated that it intends to deed the surplus goods to DIK with appropriate indemnity provisions, then DIK will coordinate all goods for overseas projects. DIK will then be the overall coordinator of all container projects, covering all organisations.
Each project would need to have its own working group and manage key aspects such as:
  • Wish list of goods
  • Funding for shipping
  • Shipping arrangements in place
  • Relevant host country customs paperwork sorted
  • Transport arrangements within Host Country
  • Manpower for relevant week to load container at RAH
  • Container drop-off and pickup at RAH arranged
The old RAH site is expected to be available for some 8 months after March 2017 for containers to be loaded at the site – hence no trucking of goods should be needed. At the expected volume, it is likely that there would be a container a week needed to be delivered, loaded and dispatched.
A high level advisory group has been formed which is investigating avenues for funding all projects through Government grants or corporate sponsorship into a Rotary Australia World Community Service project arrangement. This would reduce the effort individual project working parties need in fundraising efforts, facilitating more focus on key operational areas of projects.
With this high level coordination role, DIK committee will have an exceptionally busy year in 2017 with RAH. Hence DIK is looking for help from Rotarians in Districts 9500 and 9520 now, and next year. In particular, we are looking for a Rotarian to take on the role of DIK Collections Manager. This is a key role in the DIK team, co-ordinating the collection of appropriate donations for DIK projects. The Collections Manager does not have to personally collect the donations offered – there is a variety of options for that which brings in the coordination aspects. We get about 150 donations offered a year, from simple and routine to complex and sizable. Each requires assessment for suitability, coordination for pickup and delivery to our warehouse at Edinburgh Parks.

The role requires someone with good communication and coordination skills who can reliably relate with donors and solicit help from Rotarians and others for pickups. If you are looking for an exciting, dynamic and challenging role in Rotary helping thousands of needy people around the world, I would be very keen to talk with you.
With the RAH coordination, we are likely to require someone to oversee activities at the RAH site as goods are removed from wards etc. and loaded into containers for each project. This is to ensure that the right type of goods are collected for the relevant container by each working party each week. If you can help in this regard I would also been keen to talk with you as we set up our operational plan.

In addition, Donations In Kind would welcome cash donations and club working bees to assist the operations at the DIK warehouse in Edinburgh Parks in getting goods to needy communities. So, if your club is looking to balance its service portfolio with an international service project, please consider supporting DIK in our world-wide humanitarian project for health and literacy.

Donations In Kind
David Cockshell