Club Stories

Spelling Competition Students

 What a memorable Saby Sebastian Memorial Spelling Contest! An audience of 72 were there to witness the spelling efforts of our 10 brave contestants. The audience included Assistant Governor Kaye Gauci, 52 parents, siblings, other family members, friends, teachers and Principals of the contestants, 15 Rotarians and guests and 4 special guests from Sunbury Downs Secondary College. These were 3 students from the ACE program and their teacher, Nicole. These students were responsible for writing the words for this years contest. The tough ones were all their fault! The Primary school contestants this year were Lucy - St Annes , Patrick  Bolinda, Holly  Kismet Park, Ethan  Sunbury West, Skye  Diggers Rest , Angus  Killara, Luke - Sunbury, Matthew  Goonawarra, Rhys  Sunbury Heights and Isobel  Our Lady of Mt Carmel. The Contest was chaired by PP Rob R and the Quizmaster this year was PP Damian. Damian masterfully enunciated the words and the students more master- fully understood him! Better yet they spelt the words well. There were ten rounds in total. At the conclusion of Round 10, which were unsighted words, there were 3 contestants, Lucy, Luke and Skye on the same score of 9 out of 10. The students were asked to choose a number and Damian would then say the word at that number. In the first round of tie-break, only one student got their chosen word correct and that student was Luke from Sunbury Primary. Acting President David then presented each contestant with their Certificate for being their schools spelling champion, a prize of $100 and an embroidered finalist cap. The winner, Luke, will be presented with a winners trophy, winners cap and a prize of $500 at a school assembly in the near future. Sunbury Primary will also be presented with the perpetual trophy and $500 for their literacy program. Thanks go to Rotarians Eva, Kerry, Denis, John W, Damian, Robert I, Merv and Special thanks to Marg Healy and Karen Vanderloo for being judges in the Contest again this year, and the ACE kids and Nicole for their efforts before the Contest and also helping during the evening. The event went smoothly due to the fine assistance given by these Rotarians, the staff at the Footy Club, One Stop Embroidery (getting the caps ready on time) and of course the contestants and their teachers and families for helping them to be well-prepared for the competition. Two of the Sunbury Downs ACE students were previous contestants in our Spelling Contest. Also worthy of note was the fact that two Ron Cook Scholarship awardees for being dux of their secondary college from this year and last year were Spelling Contest winners 6 and 7 years earlier! This is proof that Saby Sebastians vision to take the Spelling Contest as a motivator for students to develop literacy skills and strive for education in general has been working as he predicted. A master stroke Saby!

By Rob Rindzevicius Dated May 13 2018







Les and Bruce Cutting the 45th Birthday Cake

 

 Last week's 45th Anniversary celebration was undoubtedly one of the highlight meetings for the year. Just over 60 members and guests attended in the presence of the District Governor, Bernie Bott, the District Governor Nominee, Brian Peters and our area's Assistant Governor, Kaye Gauci. We celebrated not only our 45 years of service as a Club, but also the contribution to the Club of founding member Past President, Les Whorlow, and long servicing former Rotarian, Past President Bruce Bouch, for his over 40 years of service to the Club. The success of the evening was in large measure due to the detailed planning and organisation of Past District Governor, Terry Grant, our President Elect, Kerry Kirk and Treasurer, Past President Barry Baguley. We are also very grateful to Rotarian Pedro Carlus of Pinnacle Print Group for printing the commemorative Rotasun to mark the occasion. During the evening DG Bernie made a presentation to the Club and the Club made presentations to both Les and Bruce. As a member for the entire 45 years of the Club, PP Les was presented with a letter from Rotary International President, Australian Ian Riseley. During the evening it was also a special privilege to induct Tracey Stoll into Club membership.

By Robert Isles Dated April 21 2018





Jason Jackson

 

 Last week we heard from Jason Jackson who runs a backyard beekeeping business. Jason also works as an Army engineer where he builds things for the ammo boys and girls to blow up. I also found out that he was once a Rotaractor from Preston and captain of his schools debating team which came runner up in a District Debating final many years ago. He related a lot of facts about bees that were very interesting. 65% of all crops in Australia depend on bees. The pollination service industry to farmers is a $1.7b industry. Bees have been making honey for some 20 million years. He talked about how a bee hive is structured from the man made boxes to what actually happens in a hive. The social structures are quite amazing and the defined roles of the Queen, the workers and the drones were well explained. Hmm, who would want to be a drone? Strangely enough the role of the Queen and the Drones are always the same, whereas the Worker, a female, in her 6 weeks of life has a chance for promotions  from pollen collector to higher duties like, nursery duties, guard, royal attendant, etc. Jason is a hard working young man who spends up to 100 hours a week on his Army work, his home business and his bees. He says he gets by with 3 or 4 hours of sleep a night and that allows him the time to also spend with and take care of his family. His observations of the worker bees and the time they spend being active must have been a natural attraction for him and so he developed his backyard beekeeping business from a simple single hive to now one that runs 25 hives. One future scary possibility he told us about was the consideration that without bees the human race could be extinct within 4 years! He then went on to tell us what we could do to help bees survive: use less pesticides and herbicides, grow organically bee attracting flowers and plants, run your own backyard beehive!

By Rob Rindzevicius Dated April 12 2018





Antonio Iannella

 More women die from Stroke than from breast cancer and more men die from stroke than from Prostate cancer. That was the message we heard on Tuesday night from our guest speaker from Stroke Safe, Antonio Iannella, him- self a stoke victim. Antonio discussed the nature of strokes, the symptoms and the importance of the quickest possible ac- cess to medical attention. Among the prevention measures he identified were healthy diet with plenty of vegetables and fruits, exercise and not smoking.

By Robert Iles Dated April 10 2018





ARH Caravan Muster in Tasmania

 It is always pleasing to hear of the involvement of our own members in the wider programs of Rotary. So last Tuesday, a good attendance of Rotarians and two guests received a most interesting talk from PDG Terry Grant on the recent Australian Rotary Health Caravan Muster in Tasmania where Terry served as one of the drivers of the support vehicles. It was great to see Tasmanian Rotarians and visiting Rotarians from the mainland enjoying the event across some of the picturesque scenery of the Apple Isle. Of even greater importance was the realisation that mental health issues are of particular significance in Tasmania and that the funds raised by the event will go into furthering mental health research. Our thanks go to Terry for the presentation of this address.

By Robert Iles Dated April 3 2018





Government House

 Some Rotarians were fortunate to attend Government House on Tuesday Mar 13th, 2018, to see the Governor of Victoria, and her husband welcome our very own Rotary International President Ian Riseley and his wife Juliet to an afternoon tea at Government House. The afternoon started with a long wait at the gates until they were opened at 2PM and we, and probably 250+ others, made our way into the glorious grounds of Government house to park our cars and then enter the Grand Hall. After a short wait the hall was full and at 3PM an officer introduced the official party, The Governor of Victoria, the Hon. Linda Dessau AC and her husband Mr Anthony Howard QC, Mr and Mrs Risely. The Governor spoke of the good work of Rotary and in particular the achievements of our President. Her Excellency is a Patron of the Rotary Club of Melbourne and she seemed quite versed in Rotary's and Mr Risely's accomplishments, referencing our efforts in fighting Polio and Trachoma and our President's past efforts including his personal stance on getting women into Rotary. After a short response from Mr Riesely the official proceedings over, we were invited to afternoon tea and to see the rooms of Government House. Memories of cucumber sandwiches, historical photos of Her Majesty the Queen and her parents on various trips to Melbourne over the years, majestic art works and stunning art pieces, no doubt gifts to Governors from local and far away places and the gardens awash with the people of Rotary will stay with me forever. I thank the club for the honour of representing them at this event. 

By Kerry Kirk Dated March 18 2018





Dr Hunt and Donna Amanyi with Mamnie Camilleri

  After the outstanding efforts of many members during October and November last year selling tickets for the Christmas Raffle, it was a delight last Tuesday evening to hear from Dr Hunt, Head of the Neonatal Unit at the Royal Children's Hospital and the from Ms Donna Amanyi, Head of Fundraising, and to present them with a payment of $7500 for a named cot in the Neonatal Unit or the next 12 months. This is the sixth year in which the Club has supported the Neonatal Unit and President-Elect Kerry Kirk has indicated that the Club will again support the Unit in 2019. Many thanks also goes to the Sunbury community which again supported he Raffle so generously. As Club members sold tickets, it was always encouraging to hear from members of the community their stories of the help that the Royal Children's Hospital has been to their families.

By Robert Iles Dated March 12 2018





Ron Cook Scholarship Recipients

  This week we had a terrific night with members of our Sunbury secondary schools community to present the 2018 Ron Cook Memorial Dux Awards. It was very pleasing to welcome the principals of Salesian College and Sunbury Downs College, Mark Brockhus and Maria Oddo, and the Assistant Principal of Sunbury College ,Craig O'Bree, together with several teachers as well as the families of the three Duces. We heard a little of the challenges tackled and mastered by each Dux, Aiden Beard (Salesian), James Brooks (Sunbury) and Natashe Luz (Sunbury Downs), who each in turn responded. Of special note is that Natasha, when a grade 6 student at Sunbury West Primary School, was also the winner of the Rotary Spelling competition. It was wonderful to be able as a Club assist three such articulate and capable young people from our Sunbury community as they move into tertiary education. Special thanks goes to PP Rob Rindzevicius who as chair of our Sports, Recreation and Education Foundation planned, organised and chaired the evenin

By Robert Iles Dated February 20 2018





Sheryn Cooper

  Last week we were fortunate to be addressed by Sherryn Cooper from the Kids Under Cover organisation which was founded in 1993. Its purpose is to house young people in backyard units in situations where a young person would otherwise be homeless. These units are placed after consultation with appropriate governmental agencies and are removed when no longer required by that family. The units consist of a bedroom and bathroom but no kitchen thus encouraging the young person to be in contact with their family at least at meal times. The organisation has a range of fundraising activities including the removal and selling of old cars no longer required by their owners who, nevertheless, get a tax deductable certifcate for the sale price of the car.

   Kids Under Cover

By Robert Iles Dated February 13 2018





The RYLA Group

  Thank you to all members who supported our 2017 Rylarian, Robert Zammit, at last week's meeting. Robert was supported by seven other Rylarians and also by Linda Gidlund, the Chair of RYLA in District 9790 and a good fiend of our Club. Robert, a law graduate, gave an excellent address in which he identified very clearly the range of life changing benefits he had gained from his RYLA experience in November last year. It is very encouraging for Club members to hear of the benefits gained as a result of our Club's sponsorship. Our thanks is owed to PP Rob Rindzevicius  for his active support of the RYLA program last year.

   By Robert Iles Dated February 6 2018





Brandan with Daryl Knight

  Recently we heard from Brendan Davies from Tour de Cure organisation which operates bike rides to raise seeding funds for cancer researchers who need such funds in order to conduct pilot studies prior to being able to apply for more substantial funding. Those who participate in the challenging and inspirational tours themselves have to raise at least $3000 to be able to participate. he Board will consider supporting Tour de Cure when non-budgeted funds are dispersed later in the Rotary year.

   Tour De Cure Website

By Merv Minett Dated January 31 2018





Philip with Merv Minett

  Last week we heard From Phillip Spencer. Phillip is from the Space Science Education Centre, and uses this medium as a tool to engage Teachers & Students in science. Phillip explained on how they attempt to engage students in matters of Science via Space Experiments to enable them to consider careers in Engineering, Science and Technology. Philip brought various exhibits along to show engage the members which ensured that there were many questions at the end of hillip's presentation.

   Space Science Education Website

By Merv Minett Dated December 12 2017





Bruce Howard with Paul Craig

  Last week we heard a local business man, Bruce Howard, speak about his long time fight with depression and addiction. Bruce is the owner of the Angry Butcher Bicycle shop in Sunbury. His honest discussion about his life clearly made us understand why his shop is named so. is life started in a small town of Balranald and he felt he was privileged because at age 17, after working hard, he owned his own butcher shop in town. He had a successful sporting life as well being a part of three senior premierships for the towns footy team. He met and married his childhood sweetheart. Life was good. However, societys circumstances changed the dynamics and economics in the town and as a result he had to start a new life in Bendigo, and then relocate to Sunbury.
He loved the move to Sunbury and saw a great future here. His wife, three daughters and himself were growing successfully in the town. A ll that changed when his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer. The familys dynamics were severely affected and eventually after her passing, he had to raise his three girls on his own.
Bruces biggest battle has been fighting off falling into his black hole. This fight has been with him for the greater part of his life. He has fallen into it sometimes with the result that his addictive nature took over in gambling and drinking as he fought his anger. To this day even though he staved off bankruptcy and re-established his life and his business, he is still in a fight with his depression.
We appreciated hearing the honest story that Bruce gave us and it helped us to understand the truth behind depression and how even seemingly successful and well-balanced people can have these battles going on in the background.
If you need help, call Lifeline 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue 1300 22 46 36. And dont hesitate to call or to talk to someone.


Fathering Project

  On Tuesday, October 17th in the company of staff from three Primary Schools and representatives of their respective parent communities, our Club held an excellent meeting last Tuesday focussed on the Fathering Project. The Primary Schools represented were Kismet Park, Sunbury and Sunbury Heights. The Guest Speaker was Colin West who is the co-coordinator of the Fathering project in Victoria. Colin has previously been involved in the establishment of the program in over 100 primary schools in Western Australia. The three Sunbury schools are among ten schools piloting the program in Victoria. Colin outlined the purpose of the program which aims to get fathers and father figures (grandfathers, uncles, sporting coaches, etc.) more involved in the lives of children. The benefits of such involvement were outlined by Colin and are well established and under- stood. It is pleasing that the Club was able to donate $400 to each of the schools to assist in their further development of the Fathering program. You can read all about the Fathering Prolject at this website:

   Fathering Project




Rodney and Damian Harman

  On Tuesday, October 10th, we were fortunate to have a return visit from Rodney Richards, a pilot from Angel Flight. He relayed a couple of interesting facts about Angle Flight. He described how Angel Flight had a parallel to Rotary in that they both were started by one man. Paul Harris started Rotary in 1905, and today Rotary International has over 1.2 million members. Angel Flight was started by Bill Bristow in 2003 and since that time Angel Flight has transported some 25000 isolated patients to and from their appointments to their doctors in the cities by volunteer pilots in their own aircraft. Without Angel Flight they would have to spend many long hours in a car to get to their appointments. Earth Angels are the ones who take patients to and from the air- ports where patients whom are flown by Angel Flight. The Earth Angels transport the patients from airports to and back where they need to go to receive treatment. You can read all about Angel Flight at this website:

      Angel Flight Website

By Rob Rindzevicius Dated October 10 2017




Josh Buzza

  Last Tuesday our meeting was addressed by Josh Buzza who represented Australia at the Under 17 International Inline Hockey championships. Josh was supported by his parents Heather and Glen and girlfriend Solar. Josh explained the nature of Online Hockey competition and showed pho- tographs from recent games. Josh has been supported by the Club from the Sports, Rec- reation and Education Fund.   Victorian InLine Hockey Website




Destiny Rescue with Jordan Wakelin

  Last week the club members heard about the wonderful work that Destiny Rescue do in 5 countries. Jordan Wakelin, who is currently Destiny Rescues Youth and School Coordinator, was our guest speaker. He described how Destiny Rescue started from one mans determination to do what he could to stop children as young as his daughter, who was 12 at the time he got inspired, or younger, to be taken into slavery and/or prostitution. That man is Tony Kirwan, an Australian electrician, who on a trip overseas encountered a child prostitute. She was his daughters age and he could not believe she was in this life and he was shocked into action. He started Destiny Rescue (DR) and developed the system where DR agents go to brothels or sex shows, befriend sex workers who are younger than 18, then they either take them away because they trust the agent, or they set up a ruse where the police raid the hotel room where the agent has the child prostitute and the child gets taken away from the brothel/sex show and the brothel/sex show gets into legal trouble for having under-aged workers. Once rescued these children are taken to Rescue Houses where they get education, nutrition, skill training and love. Jordan said, Children should be able to be children. At a Rescue House they get an opportunity to be children unlike while in their previous location. Lives have been changed in these Houses and the children get a new life and opportunities to work in careers where they do not need to go back to prostitution. Some of these children are now teachers and are teaching the newest residents to change their lives. DR are now working in five countries saving children; Thailand, Cambodia, the Philippines, Laos and now in India. To date, Jordan told us that they have rescued over 2000 children since they started and Tony Kirwan has an ambition to rescue 100,000 from a tragic life by 2020. Jordan himself has become an agent and by the end of this year hell be heading overseas to work directly in saving more children from slavery and/or prostitution. Jordan talked about the ripple effect; you throw stone into a pool and the ripples expand and move out from one small splash. That stone makes a difference and so does DR. I ts interesting he used this expression as Making a Difference is Rotary Internationals theme this year. God bless him and DR for what they do.   Destiny Rescue Website

By Rob Rindzevicius Dated September 10 2017




Sue Gunningham

 

  On Tuesday the 5th members and guests listened to a moving and heartfelt address from Sue Gunningham who lost her part- ner in the Black Saturday bush fires. Many of us left the meeting in awe of the courage and resil- ience that people like Sue are able to display in the face of great adversity. Sue's address also served to remind us why our Club willingly makes its resources available to assist in such disasters.

By Robert Iles Dated September 5 2017




Robert and Rob

 

  Last Tuesday we gathered to hear Past President Rob Rindzevicious give us an account of his recent visit to Cam- bodia and especially to the Ro- tary Club of Battambang. It was also good to hear of the contribution former Sunbury Rotarian Tamara Salajic and her husband are making to the Battambang Club. Rob's enthu- siasm for assisting a young Club establish itself and be involved in service projects that will make the local community a better place was very evident to all who hear him. In his response, Mike McCabe very graciously extended the thanks of the Club to Rob.

By Robert Iles Dated August 29 2017




Robert and Rob

 

  At our Clubs recent change-over evening, President Elect Robert Iles presented out-going President Robert Rindzevicius with a hand crafted Huon Pine Wall clock in appreciation of the 12 months of dedicated service he has made to our Club and Rotary International as President. Our thanks must go to Ian Lupson, and members of the Hume Men's Shed, Sunbury, for their very kind manufacture and provision of this wonderful momento, constructed from their prized small and rare stock of wood.

By John Webster Dated August 17 2017




Lindsay Cox

  What a privilege to hear the stories from Lindsay about the involvement of the Salvation Army in supporting our armed forces and all theatres of war since WWI. The horrors of the trenches in Turkey and France were counteracted by the dignity that a cup of coffee and a kind word would bring. They also supported the troops by conducting mass in the most difficult circumstances, carried the wounded and dead from the battlefront, helped with medical needs, counselled those who needed emotional support and performed burials; many, many thousands of them. Well known to the Salvos and who achieved great things in their time with the troops, most of all remaining stoic and faithful in adversity, were some officers of repute. Chaplain William McKenzie was the first to leave an impression and was followed in years to come by Captain Ernest Harewood, Captain Robert Henry and Major Adelaide Ah Kow. All heroes in their own right. By WWII, the Salvos became known as the Red Shield and women officers were also going more regularly. The famous symbol on their specially equipped vans was a blessing for those in need of comfort. The slogan, Make yourself at home. Hop in. was such a relief for those coming out of conflict. Lindsay told a story about a group of soldiers on the Kokoda Trail that had pretty much given up and resigned themselves to die. Until a Salvo officer with a couple of fuzzy-wuzzy angels carrying a record player and car battery for power spent some time with them, played music, had a cuppa and a kind word and then moved on to find the next group of haggard soldiers. These soldiers reported that the Salvo gave them the inspiration to get up and keep going. He saved their lives. The Salvos were honoured by Colonel Arnott when he named the SAO biscuit. SAO stands for Salvation Army Officer. A fitting reminder for us all. Lindsay was well thanked by Rotarian Fred and the Salvos suitably recognised by Rotarian John W who talked about the real situations that he knew of where Salvos made a difference to the lives of the soldiers they helped.

By Rob Rindzevicius Dated August 15 2017




Marianne and Bryce

  Thanks to Marianne Williams and Bryce Lindeman for the excellent talk they gave last Tuesday on the continuing development of the Sunbury Neighbourhood Kitchen. It is very encouraging to know that an initiative of Neil and Marianne and supported by the Rotary Club now stands on its own as an incorporated body and has developed into a very significant part of the support network in Sunbury. It was pleasing to hear that the success of the Kitchen in meeting needs in Sunbury is resulting in the search for larger premises. Rotarians are still actively involved in the Kitchen and a number serve on its Board. As President of the Rotary Club of Sunbury, I was delighted to be able to hand to Marianne and Bryce a cheque for $2000 as an indication of the Clubs continuing support for the Kitchen and its work. Through this donation the Club is continuing to honour the undertaking given to assist the Kitchen in covering insurance costs. The Club congratulates all the many volunteers who keep the Kitchen operating each Monday evening.

By Robert Iles Dated August 8 2017




Message from President Robert Iles

    I am very pleased to provide my first message as your President. Thank you for the many offers of support that I have received from members and friends. I look forward to an enjoyable and productive year as together we continue the work of the Rotary Club of Sunbury into its 45th year of service.
Last Tuesday evening we held a low key but enjoyable evening for my Induction. I thank all who attended and contributed to the success of the evening. My particular thanks goes to the following:
Our Immediate Past President, Rob Rindzevicious. It was a privilege to formally thank Rob for his enthusiastic and committed leadership of the Club during the 2016-17 Rotary year. The good health of the Club is a credit to Rob and his Board. To mark his year as our President, Rob was presented with mantle clock set in a piece of native timber organised by Ian Lupson and prepared by one of the woodworkers at the Hume Mens Shed to which the Club was a foundation contributor.
Thank you to Assistant Governor Kaye Gauci for attending, leading the Induction ceremony and conveying assurances of her support for the Club in the year ahead. Our Irish Dancers Ciane and Alexandra who entertained us with their amazing dancing skills in acknowledgement of the support given by the Club to them from the Sports, Recreation and Education Fund this past Rotary year. The support assisted the girls to attend the world championships in Dublin. Country and Western Singer, Kelli Brogan, for her outstanding singing at the end of the evening. We wish Kelli success as she heads off to the USA to produce a Country and Western recording in Nashville. Damian Harman for his very professional chairing of the evening and his willingness to transport much of our memorabilia from its present location in a storage shed. Paul Craig who provided a personal perspective on what Rotary means to him in giving the Toast to Rotary International and PDG Terry Grant who ably responded. My grandson, Nicholas Cocco, who skillfully folded the origami swans that decorated the tables. Past President, Maureen Kear, who arranged for the attendance of the Irish Dancers and Kelli Brogan. At the evening, the new Board was introduced, see the meet our Board Link.
I thank each of the above members for their willingness to service the Club through membership of the Board and I look forward to working productively with them. The Board will meet shortly to commence the task of implementing our plans for the coming year. In the words of Past President, Mike McCabe, I look forward to a year of fun, fellowship and fund raising so that we are Making a Difference by doing good in the world.

By Robert Iles Dated August 2 2017




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