The Rotary Club of Melksham are delighted to announce that since the ArtHouse Café opened on 4 July 2011, over £100,000 has been raised for local good causes. This has been achieved thanks to a team of wonderful volunteers and Rotarians. Apart from our 3 fantastic cooks, everyone who works in the café is a volunteer, so all the profits can be given back to the local community in the form of grants. We have to thank Julie Swindlehurst who manages the volunteers for 2 shifts a day, 6 days a week.
The ArtHouse has monthly changing art. It is the only venue in the area that accepts amateur art, and we have a waiting list for artists to display. Anything is accepted on any media, so it is always interesting to see what is displayed next. We have to thank Pattie Lockett who arranges this for us. A small percentage of all art sales goes into the ArtHouse fund too, for local good causes.
Local groups and organisations are invited to apply for grants twice a year, which we follow up with a presentation evening where we ask all our recipients to tell us a little of what they do and their use of the money. It is always an interesting and often heart touching evening, and of course, a good opportunity to network as there are often more than a dozen organisations involved.
The project is our major project, and not always straight forward, but has been really rewarding and is well respected in the town. It gives us a real focus, but also gives us a venue to hold meetings, somewhere we can do other fundraising activities for the wider population, and we also offer it as the local Memory Café where Rotarians provide the tea and cakes to those who come along free of charge.