Narooma Rotary Beacon 30 July 2020

Rolf’s Ramble

Last week’s Zoom meeting… shame about the photographer…

Last week we could enjoy each other’s company at home via Zoom which is the safest place to be at the moment. Thankyou Charmaine for putting the word out there and on Facebook.

Cobargo BlazeAid is in urgent need for a ‘work ute’ to move volunteers and equipment around. The organisation has been able with the help of volunteers, now mostly stranded backpackers, to replace hundreds of kilometres of fences in the Cobargo area alone. The vehicle would only be needed until ordered utes make it across the border from Victoria. Our Club is also discussing again helping out the camp once more with a donation towards catering for the now only about 14 volunteers at the Cobargo Camp.

The long awaited rain finally came. Staying home and staying safe was never as easy for me as it has been over the last few days. If it wasn’t for the garbage bins, I would have stayed dry too.  As Mike predicted three weeks ago, our July market would have been a total washout but thankfully we had already cancelled because of Covid.

This week we’ll have a Zoom meeting again; we’re getting quite good at it now. Everyone can attend and it seems to be suiting us best at this time. Thank you Frank for offering to suss out some possible guest speakers for one or more of our Zoom meetings.

The Rotary Down Under Magazine July issue was interesting as always, full of knowledge, facts and ideas. One article, ‘SHEP goes global’, honoured the work of Shirley and John Hayes-Cornish (guest speakers last year), former members of Moruya Club. Shirley received the District 9710 2019 Excellence in International Award for her work with Sexual Health Education by  Pictures. Congratulations to Shirley and John.

Please let me know if you like to discuss a topic or idea at this week’s meeting. Thank you.

Stay safe

Pres. Rolf


Again a Zoom meeting. Members should have already received details.


From Moruya Rotary

Moruya’s plan to hold the first regular weekly meeting at Moruya Golf Club on Tuesday 4 August was shafted by the latest Covid edicts on permissible bookings in clubs. They think now such meetings at Moruya Golfie may not be until the end of August.

Whether the Moruya Races will be held on 4 August is still up in the air at the time of going to press which means organising Rotary’s roster for the canteen is a work in progress.

Moruya was planning to host the visit of the Men’s Health Education Rotary Van (MHERV) to Moruya during its visit to the south coast, but that visit has been cancelled after consultation with the NSW Public Health Unit. MHERV is a Rotary project, an initiative of D9670. It’s made possible by fundraising, generous sponsorships and time freely given by hundreds of Rotary volunteers. A custom built caravan with a dedicated registered nurse travels New South Wales offering free health screenings to regional and rural men. Les Corrigan of the MHERV Management Team from the Rotary Club of Warners Bay hopes the Covid situation will improve to enable MHERV to reschedule a visit to the south coast in 2021.

From Bega Rotary

The Club’s Rotary Book Fair planned for September has now been cancelled due to the uncertainties caused by COVID-19 restrictions. The Club will try again 7-10 January 2021.

Bega is now meeting formally twice monthly at The Grand Hotel when COVID-19 restrictions allow.  Bega has informal meetings on the other two Thursdays.  

From Batemans Bay Rotary

Bay Rotarians plan to hold their first market for some months on Sunday 16 August, bringing their food van brought out of ‘hibernation’.

They will hold a Zoom meeting this Thursday night with a guest speaker and hope to hold their first dinner meeting for months the following Thursday.

The July issue of Rotary Down Under has an article about former AG Vere Gray and Bronwyn Geppert representing the Bay Club at the Club’s sanitation project in the Philippines. Our Narooma Club made a donation towards this project last year.

The Bay’s newsletter reports that, thanks to the tireless efforts of Maureen Manning, the Club has received a $10,000 grant from the District Bushfire Relief Fund. This money will resource the Mental Health Unit at the Mogo Happy Hub. In addition they have a $3,000 District Grant to assist in obtaining plants to replant gardens of people affected by the bushfires, with Maureen in discussion with the West Wollongong Rotary Club to assist in replanting of the gardens.

Courtesy of Bega’s Rotary newsletter

This really appealed …

Narooma Rotary Beacon 23 July 2020

Rolf’s Ramble

Last week we were able to have a face-to-face meeting at our beloved Golfie with hand-sanitiser, ID and temperature check beforehand. Attendance was awesome. We filled the 1st Hole with 10. Fellowship with a beautiful meal was enjoyed by everyone; no take-aways or cook-at-home meal. I hope we can keep it up.  

The International Toast was to the Rotary Club of Sherwood Forest in England. Thank you Laurelle, always entertaining and informative. It was the first time we could welcome Tony Butcher to one of our meetings. Tony was one of the volunteers who helped us at the Rotary BBQ cook-offs at the unforgettable New Year’s Eve and Day at the Evacuation Centre. We have kept in contact and hope to see more of Tony as a possible new member of the club.

The Board meeting went well, thanks to Rod the secretary extraordinaire (best ever) and of course helped by being face-to-face.  Thank you Lynn for having the books up to scratch. The meeting included a very important discussion about the Markets. The Board decided to cancel the upcoming Market on 26 July after serious consideration along the lines of ‘Stop the spread. Stay home, stay safe’. Thank you Chris and her team who were eager to bring the van back into shape with all the new COVID 19 rules. Only if we can keep a clean environment for our members, visitors and stall holders AND the distance and face-mask rule we might, but only might, have a monthly Market soon. Until we get a vaccine I fear nothing is really going to change. In what position did we humans just put ourselves into?

Thank you everyone who came last week.

Stay safe. President Rolf

THIS WEEK:  This week’s meeting should still be at the Golf Club. Please let Bob Aston know today (Tuesday) if you are not coming to this week’s meeting. We’ll keep you updated if there is any change.

Our guest last week Tony Butcher helped us out at the Evacuation Centre during the bushfire crisis.


Moruya Rotary

Moruya Rotarians were looking forward to their first regular meeting at Moruya Golf Club on Tuesday 4 August (note the move to Tuesday rather than Wednesday meetings), but the latest restrictions limiting bookings in Clubs to ten people puts resumption in doubt.

Similarly Moruya Rotarians are hoping to man the canteen at Moruya Races on 4 August, their major fundraiser through the year, after a gap of many months. But they’re a little wary after their costly experience with the last planned race meeting on Monday, 13 July. They had ordered food, planned menus and filled the roster, but Racing NSW made a last minute decision to abandon the races. So the Club is in close communication with Moruya Jockey Club to clarify whether the August races will go ahead.

Meanwhile Moruya has agreed to host the Men’s Health Van 7-8 September.

Batemans Bay Rotary

Batemans Bay’s new President is Chris Watson. This week’s meeting is in Chris’ home. The Bay Club hopes to have their first dinner meeting since the lockdown on Thursday 6 August.

Bega Rotary

Bega’s new President is Dorothea Polonyi. Their newsletter reports their Rotary Meetings are a little unpredictable at the moment. They aim to have a fortnightly meeting, if possible, on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month and a daytime social get together on the 2nd and 4th Thursday. Members are notified of arrangements in advance. This Thursday they are meeting in the open, (hopefully in the sun) at Kisses Lagoon for lunch with pizza ordered for those coming. Members are asked to bring a drink and a chair.

Bega Club is still planning to have their popular Book Fair in the Bega Showground 18-20 September. With recent restrictions the Book Fair had been delayed from their usual July School Holiday timing.


Possibly at the Golfie. We will keep you informed.

Narooma Rotary Beacon 16 July 2020

Rolf’s Ramble

Outgoing President Bob Aston handed over the chain of office to incoming president Rolf Gimmel.

I feel proud being part of Narooma Rotary and Rotary International and that we continue to do good in communities around the globe. I have adopted the Four Way Test in my daily life and that has helped me make decisions along my journey through life.

My plans for the year ahead? I feel responsible for the well-being of members of our club. Unfortunately the current situation and regulations with Covid 19 require quite a different approach to social gatherings than before, and fundraising activities have become more difficult. 

Hopefully we can keep up the good work and support, such as helping Monty’s Place. Ongoing support for Meals on Wheels is important too as services such as this may become even more necessary in coming months. 

I hope to see you Thursday.

Cheers Rolf


5pm Board meeting at the Golf Club’s First Hole Room

6 for 6.30pm meeting, again in the First Hole Room, followed by dinner and fellowship.

The Week that Was

Our changeover at the Golf Club last Thursday, held under strict Covid restrictions, was certainly different to any previous changeover. But everyone enjoyed our first face-to- face meeting since the lockdown.

Retiring President Bob Aston described the past year as one of the most challenging in the Club’s 62-year history. In the absence of any one person willing to take on the presidency, Charmaine White, Ange Ulrichsen and Bob Aston shared the presidency through the 2019-2020 year.

At the Changeover Bob described the first six months as business as usual with dinner meetings with some great speakers, thanks to Ange Ulrichsen, and our monthly markets. But the second half of the year, overseen by President Bob was through the bushfires and then the Covid-19 lockdown.  Even so, the Club still managed to contribute over $30,488 to local and international causes.

The Club recognised Cr Lindsay Brown as a Paul Harris Fellow at the Changeover.

The Club recognised Cr Lindsay Brown as a Paul Harris Fellow for his community leadership at the Evacuation Centre during the bushfires, while Gloria and Neil Jenkins were presented with a Certificate of Appreciation for their generous donation towards bushfire relief in our area. Laurelle Pacey was awarded the Club’s Rotarian of the Year. Disbursements on the night were made to Monty’s Place and to the Dalmeny Rural Fire Service.

President Bob Aston presented Helen Smith of Monty’ Place with a donation, supported by three Rotarian volunteers at Monty’s – Ange Ulrichsen, Chris O’Brien and Robyn Miller.

In handing over the chain of office to our new President Rolf Gimmel, Bob read from a message from an obviously chuffed Narooma PP Ted Bladwell, now in Toowoomba, who had invited Rolf to join our Club 11 years ago.  

“It is very satisfying for a Rotarian to propose and have their nominee inducted into Rotary and to then maintain a worthwhile service record as well as giving to the Community and to Rotary,” PP Ted said. “… It is very gratifying to know that Rolf is a Rotarian who the members of the Narooma Club now look forward to for the year ahead of leadership, direction and fellowship for Rotary.”

President Rolf is optimistic about the year with Rotary International’s theme ‘Rotary Opens Opportunities’ and the return of the Markets.

Special guest was the District Governor’s representative Past District Governor Phil Armstrong.

Gloria and Neil Jenkins


District Awards earned by our neighbours

District Awards given to or neighbours

Rotarian of the Year

PDG Phil Armstrong, the DG’s representative at our Changeover last week, was recently named the District’s Rotarian of the Year for his leadership of the combined Districts’ Bushfire Recovery Committee. That was at the recent District Changeover. In January 2020, Districts 9700 and 9710 formed the combined Districts Bushfire Recovery Committee (DBRC). It needed a dedicated and skilled leader, and that leader was PDG Phil Armstrong from the Rotary Club of Moruya. Phil has had an extensive involvement in Rotary, as have many of his family members. He was District Governor 2012/2013 and has held various key positions in Rotary and business along the way. Phil has led the DBRC in a decisive and caring way since its inception.

Phil has agreed to continue to Chair the DBRC through the next Rotary year and the rest of the Committee is also continuing.

Community Service Award

This was a hotly contested Award. The Rotary Clubs of Bega, Merimbula and Pambula won the District’s Community Service Award for their joint Sapphire Coast Bushfire Recovery project. The three clubs worked together as a Rotary Australia Benevolent Society project (established by RAWCS) to deliver bushfire relief and recovery projects to impacted families and communities.

Centenary of Rotary in Australia

Last Friday saw the launch of a baton which will travel to clubs around Australia over the next 12 months to mark the arrival of Rotary in Australia and the establishment of the Melbourne Rotary Club on 21 April 1921.

The ceremony was watched by 830 Rotarians around Australia as it was streamed live. The Governor General and Mrs Hurley opened proceedings. The R100 Centenary Ambassadors were also introduced; they will carry the baton as it travels across Rotary clubs and Districts.

There is also a R100 Centenary project, “Rotary Give Every Child a Future” which aims to save young lives in Pacific nations. Statistics show that in nine Pacific nations, one in 16 children die before the age of five.