People with a purpose

Broadly Speaking.... 29 May 2018

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Did you know that there are children in Australia – in Bendigo – who do not know how to open a book?   That they do not know that you read across the page from left to right – and that they do not know what is the front cover?

These were the shocking facts that John Jones, the inspiring speaker, at our meeting on Tuesday, 29th May, told us.   Do you know that there are families who do not have a book in the house because they cannot afford to buy books when they have to buy necessities like food?   Well there are ,and that is almost impossible to believe in a developed country like ours.  We were shocked to hear that there is a school in Bendigo where they are only 9 families in paid employment.

John is a Past President of the Rotary Club of Eaglehawk and was telling us about the Dolly Parton Project 'Imagination Library' with which he is associated.

The catch phrase 'Reading is dreaming with open eyes' caught our attention.

The Imagination Library is a project where children aged between 0 – 5 years are sent a book each month in an effort to raise their literacy level.   It costs $7.50 per book and the package includes advice for parents and carers which makes the cost $90 per month.  There are currently 255 children enrolled and a waiting list of nearly 100.   With 1,300 births per year in Bendigo, the project is facing significant difficulties.


If you, like me, are  passionate about books and reading – and passing on that love to little children -  I would ask you to click on which will give you further information.   And, even more, I would encourage you to donate $7.50 a month.  It may not be onerous for you, and it could change a life.   You can donate at:  Make cheques out to United Way Australia and reference Imagination Library Bendigo.  Post to United Way, PO Box 0759, Queen Victoria Building NSW. 1230.  Donations can be made with monthly payments of $7.50, or annually $90 – and all donations are tax deductible.

I was delighted to present John with a cheque for $1,800 to fund 20 children for a year.

It was another 'give and take' day – when we gave a donation to the Imagination Library and received a donation from the Rotary Art Show Committee for $30,000.

The 2018 Rotary Art Show was an unqualified success and we are deeply grateful to Brian Figg and his hard working Committee for their dedication to this project.

PE Libby Hughes spoke to us about a possible project for the Club – a GardenDesignFest which could be held in November.   This would be a combined effort with our Club working with the Rotary Club of South Bendigo.   Discussions are underway.    If you have an interest in gardens/gardening, etc., this one may be for you.   Please contact Libby for further information.

I, too, am investigating another project in which our Club may be involved and am in discussion with the appropriate people.   I am hoping to be able to give you further information before I hand the reins over to Libby.   Watch this space carefully.

Julie Sloan spoke to the Club about Foundation and requested that all members return their 'Centurian' collection boxes.  If you haven't yet taken a box, Julie still has a few left. 

Last Thursday, 24th May, I had the privilege of attending 'Australia's Biggest Morning Tea' which was hosted by Andrew and Heather Hampton in Victoria Street, Eaglehawk.   Red and white checked table cloths adorned the tables and it was a very bright and happy occasion.  An absolutely delicious (and wicked!), seemingly endless, morning tea, was served to the accompaniment of 'The Roosters', a group of men who played sosngs to which we could all sing along.   All proceeds from entry fees, sale of plants and raffles were donated to the Cancer Council.     Great effort Andrew, Heather and your staff.

A reminder about our Changeover Luncheon at Silks Restaurant, at the Racecourse,on Sunday, 24th June, at 12.00 for 12.30.    Plans are well underway and all we need is you.    Invitations will be out soon and I urge you to put the date in your diaries.

And another reminder – did you remember to purchase a raffle ticket from the Bendigo Club on your way out on Tuesday?   They are raising money for the Make a Wish Foundation and requested our support.  I think you could still buy tickets if you would like.   

Monday, 4th June, will be a joint Board Meeting when members of the outgoing board and the incoming board come together for the handover.   It will be the last I chair as President of the Club.    We will meet at 6.00 for dinner together in the Bistro and then move into the meeting to tie up loose ends for the year and plan ahead.   If you are a Board member and cannot attend, will you please let Wayne Smith know.

Word of the week is scurryfunge and it caused a few giggles because it related to so many of us.   It means to rush around cleaning when guests are on their way – the hasty tidying of the house when you see a neighbour coming.

And our inspirational saying -  "Dreams and dedication are a powerful combination" - William Longgood.


Calendar of Events:

5th June -  There is a change today as our Guest Speaker is not well and is unable to be with us.   So -  TODAY WILL BE A FELLOWSHIP DAY.  BRING YOUR WIVES AND PARTNERS – and also your wits!   Don't ask why – just come along and join in.

Chair will be Valerie Broad – Sergeant is listed as Hugh Wheeler.

12th June -  Hearing Specialist Dirk de Moore will be our Guest Speaker today.   He will be introduced by Chairman, Graeme Clarke and Tabitha Abbott is listed as Sergeant.

19th June -   Our delightful young Exchange Student, Laura, will speak to us about her Australian adventure over the past 12 months, following which she will leave us to return home on 30th June.  Chairman will be Joy Bruce with Tabitha Abbott as Sergeant.

Sunday, 24th June, Our Changeover Luncheon at the Race Course in Silks Restaurant.  12.00 for 12.30.


As I said last week – and so ends an amazing year, one which I, personally, will never forget.   Thank you all so much for your trust in me, your encouragement and your support.   It has taken me all this time to become accustomed to being called 'President Valerie' and I will now have to come to terms with being called 'Past President Valerie'!

Until next week – and remember, I said, bring your wits with you...........

'May the sun shine warm upon your face and the wind be always at your back'.

President Valerie. 

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