Well we had a bright and sunny day on Sunday for our biggest April Market in many years. It was wonderful to see so many stallholders and potential shoppers in attendance. Thanks to all who helped make the Market such a success.
Last Thursday we had 25 guests and members at our meeting to hear our guest speaker Lei Parker. Lei gave us a great insight into his online newspaper ‘The Beagle’. Lei is certainly passionate about the Eurobodalla and keeping its residents informed and up to date with all that is happening. The Beagle continues to support our Club by publishing our media releases to promote our activities including BowelCare, Pride of Workmanship, the Renewable Energy Expo and the Busking Competition.
Di Reid and Lec Swadling representing Relay for Life also attended our meeting to receive a donation of $500 from the Club. Di, Lec and their committee have done a wonderful job organising the Relay for Life, this year. Over $31,000 was raised to support research in cures for cancer, and money is still coming in.
As members know, Bob and Merinda Antill have moved onto the next phase of their five-year plan. They finally sold their home in Narooma and made the move fully to their new home at Lake Conjola. Bob and Merinda have been a significant and important part of Narooma Rotary for many years; to recognise their achievements and to wish them well for the future we will hold a farewell to Bob and Merinda on Saturday 12 May commencing at noon. Please keep the date and time free, I will provide you with some more details next week.
Therese and I are heading off for a few days R&R so Laurelle will be in the chair this Thursday.
Have a great week everyone.
Out and About
This week we welcome a particularly fascinating speaker in Dr Ian Noble, Emeritus Professor at the ANU’s Climate Change Institute, based in Fiji. He will talk around climate change from a Pacific – Australian viewpoint.
We won’t be in the normal location, nor in the adjoining room, but most probably in the Members’ Lounge.
Our Busking Festival coordinator Sandra Doyle says busker registrations are really starting to come in now. She has 21 busker groups confirmed to date from Sydney, Canberra and across south-eastern NSW, with more registering each day. She expects the number will exceed the 57 last year; they have until 12 May to register. There are 33 hotspot so far with a couple more in the wind. They will compete for over $9,000 in prize money.
Post recent Drug and Alcohol Forum in Moruya
Moruya Rotary President Mike Dent and fellow Moruya Rotarian Rob Richmond will represent their Club at a forum this Thursday where they hope plans will be developed to address alcohol and drug abuse in Eurobodalla Shire. The forum is hosted by Local Health Network provider Coordinare. In Moruya’s Rotary bulletin this week, Mike says he expects all key agencies to be there which will hopefully mean they can have some meaningful discussion to address this growing problem.
Asha Foundation update from Pauline
Since the devastating 2015 earthquakes in Nepal, the Moruya-based Asha Foundation has rebuilt three schools in the remote foothills north and east of the capital Kathmandu. The last school to be completed is the Radha Krishna School, a 2½ hour drive east of the capital.
During Keith Armstrong’s presidency, Moruya Club donated $6,850 to The Asha Foundation’s Earthquake Appeal. Those funds were directed to the rebuild of this school resulting in 10 classrooms, a Principal’s office and an underground water storage tank. The total cost of construction was just under $40,000. Construction began late 2016 and with delays due to monsoon rains, landslides, political turmoil and logistical difficulties, the school was finally completed earlier this year. The students and teachers now have a lovely new school, properly constructed using earthquake building codes. The rebuild of the entire village has been a mini United Nations effort – The Asha Foundation built the school, a German charity rebuilt the houses, and a team of French doctors funded the construction of a medical clinic. We may speak different languages but our objectives were the same – rebuild this shattered village.
In October, Rohan and I will be travelling to Nepal and visiting the school. On behalf of the Principal, teachers and students at Shree Radha Krishna School and the Asha team, thank you to Keith and the members of Moruya Rotary for your support. You have helped make a difference.
Asha Foundation President Pauline Gleeson (reprinted from the Moruya Bulletin)
Bicycles to wheelchairs
Some of you might have seen the moving story on ABC National TV last Sunday night about the Rotary Club of Surfers Sunrise’s converting old bikes to homemade wheelchairs for disabled children in developing countries.
Wheelchair Aid Project co-founder Daryl Sanderson said he and Des La Rance, both Rotarians, started the project together with a third person 21 years ago after one of them travelled to Fiji and saw children immobilised by their disability. Since then more than 7,000 wheelchairs have been built and shipped to 31 countries including Vietnam, Vanuatu, Cambodia and Nigeria. He has seen first-hand the impact the wheelchairs have on people’s lives. ‘Having been to quite a few countries and just seeing the look on the kids’ faces,’ he said. ‘So I get a lot of pleasure out of that.’
Now more than 550 people involved directly and indirectly in the international operation, including prisoners from the Palen Creek Correctional Facility at Strathpine who make about 30 wheelchairs a month and source bicycles. The wheelchair design has changed over the years with air-filled tyres now replaced with foam tubing, which makes the chairs puncture proof.