Above picture: Every hectare sponsor receives a Certificate of Appreciation for their welcome support

In July this year the Rotary Club of Knights Pendragon increased its sponsorship of the Mouse-Free Marion Project by a further 20 hectares to bring its total to 84, following its initial sponsorship of 10 hectares in 2022, increased in stages to 64 ha by May this year.  The Club’s Executive Secretary, Jim Rankin, when sending in Proof of Payment for R20 000 writes: “Our Rotary Club, Knights Pendragon, has not been dragging its heels!”

Rotary Club of Knights Pendragon Executive Secretary, Jim Rankin

Indeed it has not, as Jim Rankin explains quite how its welcome sponsorships have been raised: “My company (AGFACTS) administers an industry association, the Construction and Mining Equipment Suppliers’ Association (CONMESA).  We had a Golf Day at the end of last year and we managed to twist some arms to donate to the Mouse-Free Marion Project via our Rotary Club”.  He adds: “In our weekly Club meetings we have a brief “feel good” agenda item where anyone with something positive to say has his or her say and donates a sum of money to the Mouse-Free Marion Project.  This brings in about R1 000 a month [equivalent to a one-hectare sponsorship] for the project.  We have got to 84 hectares so far.  My personal goal is that the Club sponsorships will get to 100 hectares by the time the project comes to fruition!”

On behalf of the whole MFM Team, Project Manager Anton Wolfaardt has expressed his pleasure with the continued support, writing back to Jim Rankin: “That’s fantastic news, thanks very much to you and the Rotary Club of Knights Pendragon.  Your continued and generous support of the MFM Project is hugely appreciated.”


The Rotary Club of Knights Pendragon is a club within Rotary District 9400, which is one of 529 Rotary Districts with more than 32 000 clubs across the globe, all of which are members of Rotary International.  “Rotary is a global network of 1.4 million neighbours, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves.”  Fittingly, one of Rotary International’s current seven “Avenues of Service” is directed at the environment.  Last year the Rotary Club of Knights Pendragon issued a challenge to the other Rotary Clubs in South Africa (and around the world) to make their own hectare sponsorships.  They will all be welcomed!


John Cooper, News Correspondent, Mouse-Free Marion Project, 12 September 2023


A Light-mantled Albatross flies over on Marion Island; photograph by Stefan Schoombie, poster design by Michelle Risi

The Mouse-Free Marion Project is a registered non-profit company (No. 2020/922433/08) in South Africa, established to eradicate the invasive albatross-killing mice on Marion Island in the Southern Ocean.  The project was initiated by BirdLife South Africa and the South African Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment.  Upon successful completion, the project will restore the critical breeding habitat of over two million seabirds, many globally threatened, and improve the island’s resilience to a warming climate.  For more information or to support the project please visit mousefreemarion.org.