As you visit towns, please send us your stories and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will then post these stories so other Rotary Clubs can get some ideas!
|Posted on April 9, 2021 at 5:10 AM|
We arrived in Grenfell late Friday afternoon. After booking into the Albion Hotel, we had a bit of a wander around the town, and then joined the President of Grenfell Rotary, Erica Kearnes, for a relaxing dinner. Erica outlined plans for the next 2 days, which turned out to be very busy, but enjoyable.
Up reasonably bright and early the next day, for a meander around town to find breakfast. We made a point of eating somewhere different every meal.
Some went for a quick dash to Cowra markets; a real rural market, more animals than sideshows. Met some Rotarians from the Cowra Club, yes you guessed it, BBQing sausages. Then back to Grenfell for a “Radio Plays” put on by the Grenfell Dramatic Society. “Flash Gordon” and “Easy Aces – Jane Goes to the Psychiatrist” both very enjoyable. Then, across to the Christmas shop which had opened especially for us.
From there we went to the Presidents garage where we handed over the clothes and tools that we bought with us. The clothing and tools were very much appreciated. They would help many people in the area particularly the tools as many of the young people trying to get apprenticeships have difficulty in getting together a basic tool kit. The tools, ($5,000 worth), were donated by the spouse of one of our members. He is now starting to put together some more apprentice tool kits. Looks like another country trip soon.
After a bit of a break to smarten ourselves up, we went to dinner hosted by the Rotary Club of Grenfell. Had an interesting chat with the President of Young Rotary, John Payne, about a driving simulator purchase by his club to help prepare young people to be safer drivers. Might be something we could consider to compliment ‘U-Turn the Wheel’
Sunday saw us off to Ariah Park street market, a very smart little town. There we met the President of Temora Rotary Nigel Judd, and fellow Temora Rotarians selling Christmas hamper tickets. He invited us to visit his town when we next consider crossing the mountains. We left Ariah Park and travelled on to the Temora War Planes Museum. From the museum, we went into Temora for a late lunch, then back to Grenfell for a relaxed evening and a Chinese meal with Grenfell Rotarians. Monday we all head home.
We all learnt how tough life has been for country people. Seeing how the country changed the further west, we went. The President of Young Rotary, John Payne, said that farmers were now either ploughing the crop they had hoped for back into ground or trying to salvage some for fodder. We noticed, just as the green grass got rarer so did animals, and those that we did see seemed to be picking through dirt to find something to eat.
We are looking forward to another trip west and reviewing what else we can do to help.
|Posted on April 9, 2021 at 3:15 AM|
On the weekend of 14th to 16th February 14 Camden Rotarians and spouses made the 3 hour trip to Boorowa to forge a relationship with the Rotary Club of Boorowa. Previous contact had been made by President Stephen Humphreys and Rotarian wife Judith through a previous visit in June last year.
The Boorowa Rotarians planned an extremely interesting weekend of activities starting on the Friday night with a welcome dinner at the Boorowa Pub which is owned by Boorowa Rotarian Mike Ward. We were formally welcomed by Boorowa President Ingrid Corcoran and enjoyed a great evening of fellowship and getting to know each other.
After breakfast we explored the town and did some shopping, spending money in the variety of small shops in the town. Boorowa Rotary Club operates, together with the Boorowa Lions Club, an op-shop in the town which was well worth a visit. All proceeds from sales are distributed to a wide range of community groups and is a great benefit to the whole community.
In the afternoon we were taken on a tour, in the Boorowa Hotel bus, to have a look at the countryside which has quite obviously received varying degrees of rain. Some areas are showing a slight greenness following 20mm of rain the previous week while other areas are virtual deserts. We visited a huge racehorse stud, Newhaven Park, where we were given a tour by the third-generation owner, John Kelly, and got to hear about the property’s history and see quite a few of the horses. On the way back to the hotel we stopped off at the Frogmore Community Centre which was built from funds raised through a Lee Kernaghan concert, becoming the very first ‘’Hat Town’’.
That night we again jumped into our bus transport to visit a local fish farm where we enjoyed further fellowship and a great meal of perch soup, pork and lamb. The effects of the drought were quite evident at the farm through the very low dam levels on the property which is restricting the fish farm business significantly.
On Sunday morning we visited a sheep farm owned by one of the Boorowa Rotarians. Again we were able to see first hand the significant impact of the drought at the farm which normally has 1200 fine fleece merino sheep but currently only has 600 on the 500 hectare property.
The visit to Boorowa has cemented a strong relationship between our two clubs and we are already planning future visits and discussing ways we can support the Boorowa community and surrounding areas. There is also talk of a reciprocal visit to Camden.
A really great weekend enjoyed by all.
|Posted on March 18, 2021 at 5:00 AM|
Rotarians from Caringbah and Milton-Ulladulla Rotary Clubs combined forces to put on a fun Christmas Party for families impacted by the recent bushfires.
A BBQ lunch was provided and there was lots of fun with lolly hunts, sack races and "Build a Sandman" competitions!
Santa appeared to hand each child a gift purchased from local businesses.
All food, drinks, etc were purchased from within Milton.
Many of the Caringbah Rotarians stayed a few days in local hotels.
|Posted on March 18, 2021 at 4:15 AM|
Rotary Clubs combine to deliver the Caravan of Hope
The ability of Rotary clubs to work together for the good of the community can never be underestimated. When local optometrist and Hervey Bay City Rotary club member Richard Watt and his wife Gwen were watching the bushfire disaster unfold, they desperately wanted to help the affected communities.
They started a campaign, ‘Hervey Bay adopting fire affected families’ to raise funds, initially to provide some immediate relief. Local residents responded generously to the appeal and one local resident, named Don, decided that he would donate a caravan that was not being used.
Don added, ‘It’s been in my garage for years I am sure someone else can make better use of it.’
Hearing about the plight of the small town of Lake Conjola in NSW where 89 homes had been lost and up to another 50 were considered uninhabitable, it was thought that this would be an ideal home for the caravan.
‘Some residents are living in tents and are desperate for some accommodation’ said Richard, ‘we just need to get it down there.’
Richards’ wife Gwen had the answer. With the help of Rotary Clubs along the route 7 clubs would be involved in a ‘baton’ relay taking the caravan over 9 legs.
A coordinated schedule was then set up with members committing to a day and time. Sounds simple enough, but required detailed planning and a lot of phone calls.
Local Sunshine coast residents Kath and Ian Aspinall of Caloundra Rotary and Caloundra Pacific Rotary Club are typical of the Rotarians that have offered their time.
‘We are just pleased to be able to help in some way’ said Kath.
Other clubs involved include Ballina- on- Richmond, Taree North, Caringbah and Milton – Ulladulla.
The Rotary club of Milton Ulladulla, who undertake the last leg, are coordinating activities locally, working in conjunction with a small group, the Conjola Recovery Team. Together, they are providing help where it is required, and the caravan would be intended as temporary accommodation to be passed on to other families when needed.
Stephen Hladio President of the Milton-Ulladulla club said, ‘The offer of a permanent gift, not only for immediate support, but for ongoing families suffering terrible hardship, would hopefully bring some form of normality to their lives.’
Fellow club Rotarian, Kirrily Dowling manager of the local Burrill Lake Caravan Park offered a permanent home at the park - a wonderful peaceful location for recuperation.
‘We are indebted to Kirrily and all the volunteers offering their time to bringing the caravan such a long distance to Conjola - this is just an amazing offer and one that can be utilised for many years to come’
The Goldstream caravan, a pop-up camper type, is in excellent condition barely 9 years old and at over 6 metres long will provide comfortable 6 berth accommodation for a needy family.
Hervey Bay City Rotary will kick off the first leg on 19th Feb with the final leg Sunday 23rd at Caringbah Rotary’s Sunday markets to Lake Conjola a total distance from Hervey Bay of 1700km.
After promotion in the local media in the Sutherland Shire two more caravans were donated to Caringbah Rotary and have been delivered to residents in the Lake Conjola area who lost their homes in the bush fires.
|Posted on March 18, 2021 at 12:30 AM|
Over the weekend of 22-24 August 20 members of Caringbah Rotary visited Lake Conjola and met with members of the Milton-Ulladulla Rotary Club.
The weekend began with an afternoon tea at the Conjola Recovery Centre, run by Peter and Lindy Dunn. It was commented that capable people co-ordinating activities on the ground made such a huge difference to the initial response.
In Lake Conjola there was one road in, one road out and it was blocked.
The role of the Recovery Centre came about post the fire when donations began flooding in and they focussed on distributing those items. One thing that was evident was that cash/voucher donations are much more practical and also supports the local area.
Our Club was thanked for the vans and the impact of these on the lives of the recipients was explained.
Rotarians from Milton-Ulladulla joined us for dinner at the local Club.
A meeting was held the next day with Milton-Ulladulla Rotary to discuss potential future projects, followed by a family BBQ.
|Posted on March 17, 2021 at 11:35 PM|
Turramurra Rotary and District 9685 support of Moree East Public School.
Last week, TRC member Pam Pritchard travelled to Moree to attend the Official Opening of the canteen and mural at Moree East Public School, where 86% of the students are Aboriginal. Pam has been in discussions with the Principal of Moree East PS since July 2020, about how Turramurra Rotary and Rotary District 9685 could support this disadvantaged school.
The Principal, Ms Lorinda Potter, has achieved two excellent initiatives for her school, namely a cafeteria where students can sit down to a hot breakfast and lunch every day, and an educational mural painted by a local Aboriginal artist.
Bob Selinger, District Aboriginal Support, inspired clubs to participate and John Hartley, Chatswood Roseville Rotary Club, arranged the donation of 49 iPads from Abbotsleigh School, Wahroonga. Pam was able to take nineteen of these donated iPads with her, with the remaining thirty to be freighted to Moree this week. Chatswood Sunshine Rotary Club will also donate $500 to be used for chargers, covers and Wi-Fi connections.
|Posted on September 15, 2020 at 5:55 AM|
In mid - July 2020 a group of Rotary Club of North Sydney Sunrise club members and their partners visited Molong.
The Past President of the club, Allan Coates and the current Club Secretary, Allen Colburt together with Janis Glasson & Margaret Dean of Molong Rotary Club attended a meeting of the Cabonne Shire Council on Tuesday afternoon to thank the council for their $5,000 Community Assistance Program Grant.
A further donation of $,3000 from Rotary Club of North Sydney Sunrise was added to the grant and the amount of $8,000 was matched by the Rotary Australia World Community Service to provide $16,000 to Molong’s two schools.
These funds will be used to cover the costs of excursions for the students of Molong Central School and St Joseph’s School when travel restrictions allow.
A Drought Support Celebration Evening was held at the Molong RSL Club on Wednesday night with approximately 50 attendees hearing speakers from both Rotary Clubs and Doug Kinlyside the Area Governor of the newly formed Rotary District 9705.
We also heard thank you addresses by Kevin Beatty , Cabonne Shire Mayor and from Jack Thomas , School Captain , Molong Central School representing the students of Molong.
The Rotary Club of North Sydney Sunrise would like to thank the Molong community for welcoming them and especially the Molong Rotary club for their assistance in obtaining the Council Grant and hosting a very enjoyable dinner.
Both clubs look forward to continuing their co-operation with future projects in the town.
|Posted on February 8, 2020 at 9:35 PM|
It started with a weekend visit to Gunnedah to share stories and show support for our farming communities.
Lane Cove Rotarian Lalitha Warren was so moved though that she organised her work colleagues at Fisher & Paykel to host a curry lunch, a raffle and a tree of joy to help. Rotarians Craig Brodey and Tania Mace returned to Gunnedah this weekend to deliver the gifts of financial support at a country-style Rotary Club Christmas party.
Thank you and well done Lalitha
|Posted on January 27, 2020 at 1:15 AM|
Our club has a long standing connection with Tottenham, providing work experience for students and more recently drought relief assistance.
You can help by purchasing one of these cookbooks!
|Posted on January 27, 2020 at 1:05 AM|
When Geoff Smith travelled through the Tottenham district earlier this year, he was astounded by how dry the area was.
Having spent many years as a member of the Rotary Club of Narromine, Geoff contacted the Tottenham Central School’s Parent’s and Citizens Association president, Greg Radford and enquired on the state of the community before contacting his colleagues on the eastern seaboard to raise awareness of the extent and toll the drought was taking not only on farming families, but also on the small businesses reliant on the local agricultural industry.
With the support of the Rotary Club of Narromine President Chris Barnett, Geoff found that members from other Rotary clubs were only too eager to fundraise.
The team of Rotarians enquired if their contribution could assist the students and families of the Tottenham Central School and their resulting efforts was presented to Greg Radford and Amanda Thorpe, Principal, in the form of a cheque for $8,750 at a school assembly in November.
“The Rotary Club donation to our school has assisted us to subsidise every student for their major excursion last year, giving each of our families some relief from the strain of meeting all costs associated with schooling and helping us as parents, to provide extracurricular activities for our children. We are very grateful for their substantial contribution to our community,” Mr Radford said.
“Our kindergarten, year one and two students visited the Wambangalang Environmental Education Centre and years three to six stayed at the Dubbo Zoo and visited various Dubbo attractions.
“Our secondary students were also subsidised, with their excursion taking place at the end of the year to Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour.
“As a school community, we hope to keep things as normal as we possibly can for our students whilst reducing as much financial burden as we can for our families.
“We are looking forward to staying in touch with our donors, keeping them updated about the drought, our excursions and showing them how much we appreciate their support.”
“We keep reminding our students how important it is to remember that no one has to help us, these people aren't people who know us and we must always thank people for assisting us. One day, when we have an opportunity to assist others in need, we will take it,” Ms Thorpe said.
“Our thanks and gratitude extends to Geoff, Chris and their team at the Rotary Club of Narromine and to the Rotary Clubs of Nelson Bay, Cessnock, Kurri Kurri and East Maitland; to Brian Coffee, District Governor of Rotary International District 9670 and Saint Stephens Uniting Church of Sydney,” Mr Radford said.
“We hope that into the future, we can provide the same generosity to other communities needing support.”