Graeme's Message, 2 April 2015

Dear Rotarians and friends,

What a busy weekend for our club! Saturday at the Bike Shed was extremely busy with refugee asylum seekers and “Shine for Kids” children coming along for education as well as receiving a bike and going for a ride along the banks of the Maribyrnong.

On Sunday we supported WalkWest, again along the banks of the Maribyrnong, raising funds for Western Health Foundation. “Team Rotary Footscray” raised money and Rotarians sizzled sausages for the walkers or volunteered on the “bag drop” station. Thanks to all who helped and walked. Further details and photos are included in this Bulletin.

Events like these highlight the extraordinary work of many Rotarians within our club but it is important to acknowledge individual Rotarians who demonstrate “Service Above Self”. The Bike Shed relies on the efforts of Rodney Johnstone. His ongoing enthusiasm and diligence has ensured the success of this project. Not only is he at the Bike Shed most Saturdays but also each Wednesday evening. Of course, there are wonderful community volunteers without whom the Bike Shed couldn’t function. The work of Jo Attard establishing the link between the Council and Rotary (via Rodney) to get the project established was vital.

No BBQ run by Rotary is possible without the efforts of Ron Hunt. Not only does he purchase the sausages, bread anddrinks but he sets up the BBQ and tent and then coordinates the clean-up. Sunday was no exception and Ron’s work needs to be acknowledged.

Cluster Clubs are busy at present with special functions. Joy and I attended the Keilor East “Gala Concert” last Friday featuring the Victoria Male Welsh Choir and the well known singer Silvie Paladino. It was a great night of entertainment. 

This week Flemington is holding its annual “Past Runners Breakfast” honouring Stawell gift winners and participants. In May, Tullamarine is holding a dinner to support children with heart disease.

Last Thursday we were privileged to have Alexa Ridgway speak to us as part of her application for the D9800 Rotary Post Graduate Scholarship. We heard of her work supporting victims of family violence and how she will continue research into this area working towards a PhD at Hong Kong University. Following the meeting, a small group interviewed Alexa and gained further insight into her plans for the future and had no hesitation in supporting her application to the District Selection Committee. We wish her well for her interview on Wednesday April 1.

As we look forward to next weekend some will enjoy family gatherings, short holidays, a return to the football and others will attend special church services.

Whatever you do I hope you have a nice break.