Kirkintilloch: Top award for Alice (92) for her outstanding humanitarian work

A 92-year-old Kirkintilloch woman has been awarded Rotary International’s highest award for her exceptional humanitarian work.

Thursday, 27th May 2021, 8:32 am
Updated Thursday, 27th May 2021, 8:35 am
Alice McKenzie with Donnie Campbell, Secretary of Kirkintilloch Rotary and Bob Tomlinson -Assistant District Gov. ( ADG) of Rotary International.

The Paul Harris Fellowship Award is is given to a Rotarian or a member of the community that has made an outstanding contribution to the community.

The award for ‘Service above Self’ was presented to 92-year-old Alice MacKenzie MBE by members of Kirkintilloch Rotary.

She received the award at a small socially distanced ceremony in her garden recently.

A former librarian for the Glasgow Herald, Alice became Head of Libraries in Paisley, Strathkelvin and East Dunbartonshire.

A shelf for her services was dedicated to her in 1987 in the Glasgow Women’s Library.

She was a dedicated Commissioner for the Girl Guides and led several foreign trips for them.

She also founded the Talking Newspaper service, introduced mobile libraries in the district as well as reading sessions in care homes.

On top of that, Alice founded Kirkintilloch Soroptomists and takes part in Womens Heritage events.

She was awarded an MBE by the Queen for her work with Save the Children. Following the revolution in Romania in the late ‘80s, she took essential supplies and books to universities in the war-torn country and fostered five young people who in turn adopted her as their Scottish Granny,

Alice’s work in helping families who flee war-torn regions continues. She has been at the forefront of supporting families who fled to Scotland from Syria.

This has led to the formation of the Jasmine and Thistle group which helps bring Scottish and Syrian families together. This group was represented recently at a United Nations Conference.

Bob Tomlinson of Kirkintilloch Rotary told the Herald: “Officers from Kirkintilloch Rotary who presented the award, told Alice that club members were unanimous in agreeing she should receive the honour.

He added: “I asked Alice what her favourite book was .....she said it was Alice in Wonderland and at the age of eight she was given Little Women - with no illustrations.”