In 2007, Rotarian Muriel Collison and her husband Jerry visited Kazakhstan to adopt a girl, Sophia. After they returned with their daughter, they could not forget the other children they saw in the orphanage. Muriel joined her Rotary Club and began working with the Rotary Club in Almaty to obtain a grant to purchase equipment and materials for one of the poorest orphanages, the Karakastek Children's Home.
With the assistance of Rotary International, Norsbrook Rotary Club, Deerfield Rotary Club and Rotary Club almaty, almost $13,000 was raised in 18 months for orphans from Karakastek.
This grant meant a lot not only to those children whose lives have changed for the better, but also to Muriel herself.
The Rotary Club of Almaty picked up her baton and began to work on collecting the necessary things for the shelter. First, a list of 14 most necessary items was compiled. It included not only toys, clothes, books, bed linen, beds and mattresses, but also water dispensers, refrigerators, irons and vacuum cleaners, which partially improved the quality of life of children in the orphanage.
Rotary Club Almaty received an international grant in 2010, the work on the implementation of which was started by four members of the club - the leaders of the Project "Caracastec". The rest of the club members later joined them - they helped in finding the necessary things at the best price. Using personal connections, club members were able to find sponsors who donated some things for free – refrigerators, water pumps, fax machines, copiers and scanners. The Committee requested commercial organizations to provide the lowest prices for goods and equipment for the project. Some of them responded and as a result, we received the necessary equipment for children and the orphanage with a 60% discount from the original price, which significantly increased the overall efficiency of the project.
The project was completed in February 2011. Thus, the Rotary Club of Almaty celebrated its 15th anniversary.