The Key 20th January 2014

This week’s meeting

This week’s meeting will not be held on Monday 20th January, but instead we will be attending the National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) Session C dinner on Thursday, 23rd January at the Ainslie Football Club. This will be a great night where Rotarians from around the District and their guests will have the opportunity to hear speakers from the field of science as well as meet many of the NYSF students, several from overseas. Registration for dinner to and follow the prompts. There will be no provision for cash payments on the night.

On Sunday 12th January, a couple of our members home-hosted NYSF students from Session A.  From all reports it was an experience that was thoroughly enjoyed by members and much-appreciated by the students as they were able to put their feet up, catch up on washing from a busy week and chat with members and their families while enjoying home-cooked meals.  Those attending the Session A dinner reported that it was a very worthwhile night with excellent speakers.

Home Hosting – Sunday 26 JanuaryQueries/cancellations for NYSF:  Adam de Totth, Chairman, NYSF Committee or phone on 6288 1441.

Last Week’s Meeting – Guest Speaker: Beth Peters

Beth spoke about her work as a broker between the ACT Chamber of Commerce and the ACT Government, particularly in relation to our area of Gungahlin. It was extremely interesting to hear about the work that has been done across the ACT, such as multi-generational partnerships between schools and aged care facilities, for example, students undertaking projects requiring them to record oral history of aged residents, taking residents for coffee outings, and also ensuring interactions with the staff in the facility. In the ACT there are now eight schools and eight aged care facilities with partnerships. Beth explained that her role is to make the connections for community partnerships, provide guidance, then move away.

Another interesting program, “Re-engaging Youth”, received funding from businesses as well as DEWR, the federal agency that also provides direct funding for certain community programs run by the ACT Chamber of Commerce.  As part of the youth program “Project Dinnertime” Poh, the famous chef, encouraged youth to prepare eight healthy dishes from the basic bolognaise recipe.

In Gungahlin, Harrison Primary School and Wells Station (a working farm with a 99-year lease) have established a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in order to move forward with a partnership to provide the means for children to gain a better understanding of life in days gone by as well as how a farm operates now.  It is anticipated that it won’t be long before there is much wider community involvement with individuals and volunteer groups, such as Rotary, developing ideas to restore and improve facilities on the farm.

Members found Beth’s talk very interesting and there was a great deal of discussion and brain-storming. Beth was asked to keep us informed of relevant community projects in Gungahlin, particularly Wells Station which would be worthy of a visit in the near future.

Update on our 2010 Ambassadorial Scholar, Michelle Jester

140120_the-keyMichelle is still living and working in Washington DC.  She is still with the National Association of Community Health Centres and is enjoying carrying out research projects and writing public policy.  At Christmas she returned to the family home in Rome GA, accompanied by her boyfriend, Jino. (see photo).


Late last year our Club donated $1,000 for the purchase of a ShelterBox.  This Rotary disaster relief program provides shelter, warmth and dignity to those who have been affected by disasters worldwide.

At the heart of the large durable plastic box is a tent for a family of up to 10 people.  Other essentials include a stove, cooking equipment, water containers & purification, mosquito nets, tool kit, thermal fleece blankets, waterproof groundmats, children’s activity pack and warm hats & gloves. Members can track our ShelterBox by the unique number, 12369, on the website

Club Social Night – 3 February – Thai Herb, Gungahlin

This will be a great social night for members and guests.  Please advise Liz of numbers.  Banquet $25 or $30pp.

Other Important Rotary Dates for Next Year!

Members are reminded to register early for these great opportunities:

  • District Assembly, Bega (3-4 May 2014)
  • Rotary Peace Scholars visit Canberra (preliminary date 3-6 May 2014)
  • Annual Rotary International Conference in Sydney (1-4 June 2014)