The Rotary Los Amigos Project has been notified that the Alberta Government, Community Initiatives Program has approved a $15,000 grant for their 2017 Project.
Los Amigos is an international service project organized by Rotary Club of Lethbridge Sunrise. Each year since 2011 Los Amigos has coordinated the donation of 29 decommissioned Canadian vehicles to Mexican communities. These vehicles include ambulances, fire trucks, handi-buses and school buses. All vehicles are in regular use for medical emergencies, fire fighting or transportation of young students and disabled individuals in Mexico.
Los Amigos is funded through Rotary and government grants, donations and sponsorships. Rotary clubs in Mexico assist by identifying appropriate destinations for the vehicles. Throughout the year, Rotarians work diligently with their local communities to obtain donations of decommissioned vehicles, supplies and services. The vehicles are inspected and made roadworthy. Rotarians are recruited as volunteer drivers who make a 7 day, 3,800 km journey from Lethbridge to Mazatlan. Since 2011 over 20,000 hours have been contributed by Project volunteers in Canada who serve in a variety of roles. Mexican Rotarians and community volunteers also contribute a significant amount of time assigning vehicles based on need, hosting celebrations in receiving communities and overseeing operation of the vehicles to ensure compliance with Project standards.
An advanced training program was launched in 2015 and delivered in Mexico to help emergency medical technicians and fire fighters develop their skills. In turn, they offer training to their co-workers. The Los Amigos training team consists of experienced trainers including fire-fighters, licenced health-care practitioners and emergency medical technicians. Sessions and printed materials are offered in English and Spanish. Topics include emergency services and fire fighter training.
Rotary unites leaders from continents, cultures and occupations to exchange ideas and take action to meet the needs of communities around the world. Rotary’s more than 34,000 clubs undertake service initiatives to overcome challenges facing their local communities and partner with clubs from around the world to help improve international communities.