It's been awhile since I've penned a Bulletin and there's been SO much happening around our Club, so here's a short & sweet summary and some important diary dates!
No tuesday meeting this week, instead it's the quarterly Stonnington Cluster combined meeting on Wednesday 3rd March, 6pm for 6.30pm start, hosted by Rotary Toorak at our new home, the Melbourne Bowling Club, 138 Union Street, Windsor. $25ph, cash only please, drinks at bar prices, special guests include District Governor Phillip Archer and guest speaker, City of Stonnington Mayor, Cr. Kate Hely (pictured below)! Please message me via WhatsApp to advise if you are coming so we can let the venue know numbers for catering? Great event to invite a guest!!
Tuesday 9th March - International Women's Day Event Meeting via ZOOM! An amazing line up of speakers talking about "A Bold New World" post covid 19. Please invite a guest, many clubs are running fundraising events to show this line up, at Rotary Prahran we're offering it to our members and their guests at no charge but we can only show it once, so please share our zoom details with potential members or invite a friend over to your home to watch it together!
Vocational Service Visit to the Shrine of Remembrance - March 20th
Cambodia - Our Donated Mobility Aids Just Arrived in Siem Reap
Remember when RAMP rep Peter Schneider was offered a huge pile of children's mobility aids by the Glen Allen school in Glen Waverley? Peter, Sue & others collected it all and delivered it to Donations In Kind warehouse, District International Service Chair Jenny Foster liaised with a special school in Siem Reap who said they'd love to have the equipment, Keilor East Rotarian Deb Sloggett coordinated Wheelchairs for Kids to donate too, organised shipping and then covid 19 scuttled the shipment for months. A few weeks ago our guys again rolled their sleeves up & loaded a 40' container, we contributed $2,000 towards the freight cost and yesterday the container was unloaded to the absolute delight of the team at Safe Haven, Green Gecko and other beneficiaries in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
Safe Haven Director (& Rotary Melbourne Passport Club member) Jess Whitney (at left in the pic above) emailed today:
Hello from Siem Reap, everyone!
I cannot tell you how amazed we are all at Safe Haven. This a truly remarkable collection of rehabilitation equipment. Incredible quality and variety - we’re already putting children’s name on equipment and can’t wait to deliver to children’s homes. The staff are ecstatic and grateful (and hot and sweaty after unloading everything!) The children’s comfort, safety, and quality of life will be vastly improved.
I will share more photos soon. In the meantime, please know how amazed and full of greatly use we are! 🏼
Our Club contributed $2,550 and was successful in obtaining a District 9800 International Grant of $1,270 to send to our project partner, Rotary Kampala Kawempe in Uganda, to purchase 500 mosquito nets, hire slashing and spraying equipment, plus signage and other supplies to keep slum families safe from malaria.
Members have met President Elect Henry Nsamba several times as he's given our Club project updates via zoom, and here are some of the many pictures he's forwarded of his Rotarians, Rotaractors and community members in the field. A life saving project with huge impact!
Rotary Prahran supported the initial Timor Consortium from 2017 - 2020, installing 32 water tanks and 4 toilet blocks for schools in the Baguia region of Timor Leste, and implementation of the WASH program. The project attracted funding from The Rotary Foundation, D9800 International Grants, donations through RAWCS and from individuals, and from 6 Rotary Clubs (Prahran, Camberwell, Chadstone-East Malvern, Glenferrie, Hawthorn, and Malvern), and cost $139,150. There were 4 Rotary Team visits to the area to assist, mainly with planning and siting tanks, checks on work carried out locally, and liaison with local officials. We have now committed a further $10,000 to the next stage.
Other benefits of the program have been
The WASH program has promoted hand washing, especially helpful now in the Covid era.
Leopoldina Guterres, a school principal at St Joseph’s High School, originator and in-country co-ordinator of the project, has become a Rotarian, joining Melbourne’s Passport Club.
Great news!! The Consortium have finally received approval from the District 9800 Grants Committee of our $6,000 District Grant and we have also received all other pledged contributions which takes their confirmed fund raising to a grand total of $97,828.
They have submitted an order for ten (10) 5,500 Ltr Galvanised Water Tanks to the Timor Roofing & Training Unipessoal Lda in Baucau, which should be ready for collection in March/April 2021
Ms Leopoldina Guterres, the In Country Co-ordinator, will arrange for these to be collected and delivered to the first 10 village sites where local Villagers will construct stone and concrete Tank Stands and instal either Gutter and Downpipe systems from school buildings or polypipes from nearby fresh water springs to fill these Water Tanks which form part of Stage 1 of the Project.
Stages 2 and 3 are scheduled to take place in October/November 2021 and March/April 2022 espectively and will comprise more Water Tanks and hopefully some School Toilet Buildings.
Whilst local Villagers are capable of installing Water Tanks using skills imparted to them by our earlier Rotary Volunteer Team Members, the construction of School Toilets really requires prior scoping by Rotarians. When we can travel again this would be a great project for some of our members to get involved in in Timor!
Pinchapoo Partnership Vocational Service Chair, President Nominee (for 2022/23) Sylvie Berchick is project managing on our Club's behalf, the huge District 9800 wide collaboration with not for profit Pinchapoo, offering basic personal care packs 4 times a year and special orders of one off packs such as full sized Sukin toiletries that are worth thousands of dollars and mean so much to vulnerable people supported by Rotary clubs all over the District.
In the January quarter 2 clubs ordered 250 packs, combined male/female. in the December quarter, 12 clubs orders 2390 basic packs.
Sylvie reported that between Father's Day & Christmas, she was able to provide Clubs 5/6 full size Sukin products in a large cellophane bag totalling around 20,000 products, free from Pinchapoo.Clubs distributed these full sized products to Seniors projects, Fire and Drought Relief, End Trachoma, both Seafarers organizations, The Alfred Hospital Mental Health Care Unit, homeless projects, Churches, Afri-Auscare (although Sylvie has now set up for them to order directly), victims of domestic violence, selected charities and more. When covid has limited opportunities for fundraising, being able to support vulnerable people with products or 'in kind' donations has meant community service has continued without a lot of cash, thanks to partnerships that Sylvie has forged, donations of goods that she's procured and networks established. Thanks Sylvie!
RAMP Continues Collecting.... and even Susie is a client! Thanks to Peter Schneider who fields most of the inquiries from people wanting to donate mobility aids and who has borrowed the DIK truck to collect from all over Melbourne many times, we are regularly stocking Donations In Kind with all sorts of mobility aids for local and international use. As testament to 'It's not what you know but who you know", when Susie Cole missed a step in the middle of the night, swapping a carload of equipment picked up from Sunbury and Templestowe for a moon boot, crutches & a kneel on scooter at DIK was a fair trade! Thanks Laurie for the selection of boots & Bob for the scooter!
Every friday we are still delivering food packed at Uniting Prahran & donated by Fareshare & Food Bank, to homeless people in crisis accommodation around Melbourne. Thanks to all our volunteer drivers, David & Jan Rosenberg, Sue Vincent, Sylvie Berchick, Yvette D'Mello, Gordana Ardaut, Peter Schneider, Jim & Liz Smith for this regular community service!
Fundraising Despite the limitations of covid lockdown, our Club has run a successful raffle, run the parking for the National Trust Christmas Market at Como Park North, returned to the Bunnings BBQ circuit and will soon be hitting the pavements again delivering City of Stonnington event notices for a few more $$$. Thanks David Rosenberg for leading the charge and for all our wonderful members and volunteers for helping out, we don't raise millions but we make every $ count!
The Bunnings team at work!
New venue, new members, new projects!
We had our first 'face to face' meeting at the Mission to Seafarers and were pleased to induct new member Yvette D'Mello(pictured below with her sponsor David)! Yvette has already volunteered in the friday food deliveries and is joining the International Service committee with Susie.
Let's stay connected! Join us every tuesday night, the 1st & 3rd weeks of the month at the Melbourne Bowling Club, 138 Union Street Windsor, the 2nd, 4th & 5th tuesdays via ZOOM, invite a friend, meet new people, get involved!
If you are still having difficulties, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or members can send a note via our WhatsApp group and we will call you to talk you through it.
As you know our Club theme for the year is "Inspiration, Collaboration & Perspiration", and as you can see from just some of the projects above, we're doing well in all three! I know I've missed mentioning some projects and acknowledging everyone in the Club who's helped out with so much lately, but thank you everyone for everything that you do, we're a small club in membership but big in impact, thanks to you!