Newsletter for the Rotary Club of Dalkeith - Issue No.: 345 Issue Date: 10 Jan, 2019

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President Craig James and Gest Speaker Debbie Mason

Meeting Notes 11th December 2017 - Debbie Mason

President Craig James welcomed Rotarians and guests to the Rotary Club of Dalkeith, “the home of Rotary District 9455”. He particularly welcomed this week's speaker, Debbie Mason, who is both a rower and personal friend.  Debbie is from "Starting Over Support" (SOS) a service for women and their families forced to leave home and to move into private, public or community housing.  Our Charitable Trust made a Donation in June 2017.

President Craig also gave a special welcome to ADG Michele Alexander who provides Dalkeith with special support at district level and will attend the Dalkeith Board meeting this evening.

President Craig requested members to sing the anthem in the key of F, without John Thornton or a starting note.  The rendition was acceptable and there was consensus that the benefits of John’s recent training of members may be bearing fruit.  The members are perhaps like Apple and Olive trees that do not fruit every year.

Visiting Rotarians and Guests:  

Trevor Gorey introduced his guests Hugh Stowell and Paul Napper.

Apologies and LOA: There were 10 apologies and 1 LOA; 44 members and 2 guests are expected. There should be 46 present.

Question of the Week: 

The question for this week was read by Tom Langley:

Question: For what reason did more than 1,200 people gather at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland on Saturday, 11 November?

Answer: Rotary Day at the UN. For the first time in its 13-year history, Rotary Day at the UN was held outside of New York.‚Äč

Answered by: David Smith.

Family and Friends Announcements:

Anthony McGrath proudly announced to the members that the previous Friday he and Shelley had attended the graduation of their eldest daughter Courtney, as a Veterinarian from Murdoch University.

John Bolto advised members that his daughter Alex had announced her engagement to boyfriend Antonio Gatta on Sunday.

Michele Alexander advised members she is looking forward to seeing her son Sam, who is on a tennis scholarship in the US and will be returning shortly for Christmas.  Sam recently completed his first semester studying Sports Management and Business at Reinhardt University in Waleska, Cherokee County, north Georgia.

Birthdays and Anniversaries: David Smith announced the birthdays and anniversaries as follows:

Mon 11 Dec – Debbie Halbert’s Birthday

Tue, 12 Dec – Lindsey Shepherd’s Birthday

Sun, 17 Dec – Albert Deda’s Birthday

Wed, 13 Dec – Chris and Barbara Cole will be celebrating 48 years of Marriage

Thu, 14 Dec – Winston and Margaret Jones will be celebrating 51 years of Marriage

Sat, 16 Dec – Bruce and Sue Jeanes will be celebrating 17 years of Marriage

Sun, 17 Dec – Richard and Barbara Ranshaw will be celebrating 40 years of Marriage

Club Announcements:

Members Attendance:  Kent Warburton announced 78% attendance – 43 members present and no makeups.

Committee Reports and Announcements:

Charitable Trust: (Russell Hawkins): Russell announced the Trust committee had met this evening and was pleased with the performance of the trust investments.  He took the opportunity to alert members to the last 5 cases of Crooked Brook Chardonnay which are still available.

Club Secretary’s Report (Trevor Gorey):  Trevor reminded Board members that the Board meets tonight at David Miller’s place at 3 Mann St Cottesloe.

Club Treasurer’s Report (Anthony McGrath): Anthony advised members that on each table were a set of club and project accounts for the benefit of those who do not have the time, skill or inclination to look on the web.

Anthony also asked members to take special care to IDENTIFY both the REASON and THEIR SURNAME on all payments so money does not get lost in general revenue. Smiths should include additional identifiers.

District Conference 2018 Report: Anthony urged members to book for next year’s District Conference.  Members were reminded of the Early Bird prize, which is still current, and urged to book soon. Anthony will send all members an e-mail.

The website to book is

Club Service: (John Bolto/John Murdoch):    John advised members that his committee had met this evening and Bob Davis had agreed to take over Birthdays and Anniversaries from David Smith in the new year.

Community Service: (David Miller/Steve Halbert): David reported to members that “Cans for Christmas” had been very successful, with 2.4t of food collected in the Dalkeith club catchment and 4t of food collected in total between the four clubs that participated.

Vocational Service: (Peter Marfleet): Peter reported that his committee had met this evening and they now have three very worthy “Pride in Workmanship” entrants.  Peter advised members there was room for another entrant if one is to be found quickly.

Foundation and International Service: (Ken Ilett/Gary Dienhoff): Ken reminded members of the International Dinner on 26th February in Northbridge, and he will send a board around next week.

Public Relations: (Peter Robertson/Albert Deda): Peter Robertson advised members that now the collection results are in for the “Cans for Christmas” he will try to get some “Post” publicity for the very good results.

Membership: (David Ellis/David Smith): David Ellis advised members that RI has distributed a “How are we Going?” survey. David invited members with any concerns about lack of engagement to please talk to himself or President Craig.

Youth: (Kim Smith/Leon Lorenzen):  Kim reported his committee meeting tonight where they have three RYLA candidates, of which they hope the club can sponsor two.

Sergeant Peter Panek and AG Michele Alexander

Neil Wilkie gave an update on the Club relationship with the Dalkeith Primary School where he had recently attended an assembly and presented a book prize.

Announcements and President’s Report:

President Craig asked members who had not already done so, to collect their Cricket Sweep for the Ashes Series tonight. He reminded members they need not be concerned that the games were already being played because the winner is not determined until the last ball of the last test.

President Craig also thanked organisers Bruce McGeorge and Richard Ranshaw who had contributed so much to the success of the Christmas party at President Craig’s place on December 8th. He reported that the excellent organisation made it very easy for he and Colette to thoroughly enjoy themselves.

David Smith gave an update on the work he is doing with Geoff Hicks to get medical supplies together for the new hospital supported by the Tabitha Foundation in Cambodia. Nokor Tep Women's Hospital in Phnom Penh recently commenced providing women in Cambodia with improved health facilities and services. The first floor has been opened and is now operating.  The current challenge is to raise funds for the cost of the sea container transport from Perth to Phnom Penh, which is $2,700 each. David is seeking funding support for the first container which will be ready to go shortly.

Sergeant: Sergeant Peter Panek and Corporals Bruce McGeorge and Stuart Brash.

There was celebration of birthdays, anniversaries, the wine table, departure tax, arrivals tax, and club service celebration.  Kim Smith celebrated a working telephone, John Bolto a future of reduced parental responsibility, Bob Davis winning the sailing, Bruce McGeorge for selling his boat and restoring his wealth, and President Craig for achieving lawn burns with a reel mower.  Everybody celebrated the UN “Rotary Day.” The Sergeant advised members he has relented and lapel pins will only be celebrated when lapels return in May.  Reverse parking will become optional and no longer cause for celebration.

Guest Speaker: Richard Ranshaw introduced Debbie Mason as a person who saw the light on the Nullarbor. Debbie is a member of the Zonta Club of Perth and had the idea to form the Starting Over Support service (SOS) while driving across Australia about four years ago and has already provided many families with essentials to furnish a new house including beds, couches and white goods, as they come out of refuges.

Debbie described Zonta as like Rotary. Perth Club members are drawn from a wide range of occupations including business owners, health professionals, CEOs, lawyers, scientists and engineers.  They all have one thing in common – a commitment to improving the lives of women and girls around the world.

Covering the metropolitan area, it is the only service in Perth that provides everything for the house.

When Debbie approached Zonta House Refuge Association three years ago for support to start up the service she was provided a double garage and a granny flat that they outgrew very quickly.

SOS became incorporated as a registered charity this year and is now based out of a Bayswater warehouse from which they do regular deliveries of cleaning products, tables, chairs, vases, cutlery, power boards and other items needed to start life over.

Debbie described how when SOS gets to the families they are sleeping on blankets and pillows on the floor, they haven’t got a fridge, cutlery, plates.

She said that the biggest problem for women who’ve come from a domestic violence situation is that everything seems difficult, everything’s a challenge. The SOS service is a special thing that helps make life normal. Most of the families are quite shocked that people are prepared to give them so much and that it’s all free.

Debbie said that the most needed items included fridges, washing machines, microwaves, brooms, mops, vacuum cleaners and chests of drawers.  SOS has an electrician that comes in every week to tag the electrical items to make sure they are safe for people to use.

For more information or to donate members can call 0431 291 816. Or they can visit the SOS facebook page:

The biggest costs that SOS has are the warehouse rent, truck running costs, power and phone.  Because these are recurrent, not capital expenditures, government funding is not available.

Dalkeith members can assist with gifts of money, volunteered time, household products and cleaning products.

President Craig thanked Debbie and presented her with a Rotary cake as a gift.

Future Events: President Craig noted the following future events.

Board meeting tonight at David Miller’s place.

Rev P Smith’s Christmas message on 18th December.

Family Barbeque on January 15th, 2018.

International Dinner 26th February 2018.

Boat-Tie-Up 18th March 2018.

District Conference … 6-8 April 2018.

Close: President Craig thanked Debbie again for her great work and informing the club members of it.

He thanked the NGC staff Denise and Emma, Cupid Caterers Mandy and Sandy, for an outstanding effort to feed twice the number usually catered for. He acknowledged Sponsors Lizzie Bee Florists, Stirling Partners (Club Auditors), Paragon Consultants (Charitable Trust Auditors) and PSZ Accounting (Charitable Trust software).

He called on members to recognise RI President Ian Riseley’s Presidential theme for the year, Rotary Making a Difference.

Members were asked to acknowledge the Flag.

Author: Leon Lorenzen

Published: 12 December, 2017


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