As we end the year, we as Club members can deservedly take a sense of pride from our accomplishments this year.
Demand is increasing from those seeking assistance, with many more requests than we can satisfy – a healthy situation, but a challenge for next years’ Board.
Our situation remains very good financially, and thanks to the CRFM for their excellent work here.
Focus on our activities; ‘in kind’ and funding
This is a selected report of highlights and not a complete list of activities.
Revenues and Investment
The Capital Region Farmer’s Market (CRFM) remains our main revenue stream and, as with all our committees, we are indebted to the work of Committee members. The CRFM still is performing strongly under the guidance of an active Committee and market manager and assistant manager.
Stronger ties were formed this year with Jerrabomberra Rotary Club, who assist us in running the markets through staffing of the information stall and traffic control, by acknowledging financially their contribution to the success of the markets. A Memorandum of Understanding and Standard Operating Procedures are under development between the two Clubs, to ensure we document our mutual good intentions and observe sound governance principles.
The Investment Committee continues to perform well, continuing our conservative investment strategy. As a result returns are not as high as in originally received, due primarily to market volatility, but returns remain attractive when compared to Big 4 bank rates.
Expenditures and other Contributions
Community Service ($30,000 Disbursed)
We continue to support the MULCH program at Marymead, this year funding a horticultural igloo purchase.
Other Community allocations have been made to ACT Deafness Resource Centre, Stuart Southwell to attend Deaf 8-Ball Association tournament in the UK, ongoing assistance to Miracle Babies, the Australian Rotary Health Fund, and Lara Jean Association for kids outings.
This year being the Centenary of ANZAC, a donation was made to the Royal Australian Artillery Historical Company, to be used for the training and maintenance of gun carriage horses that pull a restored World War I field piece.
In addition funds were allocated to for miscellaneous catering expenses, and Telstra Services to the Headmaster’s Cottage, Hall Primary School.
In addition to funding, Club members provided assistance in terms of labour and/or catering equipment to three events at Fraser Primary School, the Sony Foundation at Canberra Grammar, the Hall Collectors Club and a local business that lost its kitchen during a fire.
Youth & Vocational Service ($75,000 Disbursed)
A significant increase was made in Youth and Vocational funding this year to acknowledge the additional expenditures involved in, in particular, the University of Canberra scholarship program and the inbound Youth Exchange student for 2014-15, Martina Baumeler. Some the highlights include the following.
The Club continued its involvement in providing financial assistance and mentoring to students at the University of Canberra through its Scholarship program. In addition to the two scholars continuing from each of 2013 and 2014, three worthy recipients were selected for the 2015 program.
Apprenticeship Awards were made to this year to four Building apprentice recipients sharing $5,000 in prizes, with a further $10,000 shared by this years apprentice Chefs.
The Club continued its financial and other support for the Rotaract Club of the Rotaract Club of the University of Canberra, and intends to provide seed funding for the Rotaract Club of Shoalhaven.
School Programs continued stringy this year for the Melba-Copeland College (Years 11 and 12) FLEX program and LSU (Learning Support Unit), attendance of Jeyanthan Rasalinkam at the Rotary Murray Darling School of Freshwater Research in April 2015, and this year we sent four high school students to the two RYPEN sessions.
Martina Baumeler (Switzerland) has been our guest as an inbound student under the Youth Exchange Program through the Rotary year and will be farewelled from the Club in July. Also on July, a new inbound exchange student, Gerardas Merliunas, is due to join us, and James Coffey is to be sponsored as an outward bound student, departing for Germany in January 2016. A former student, Sophie Howard, returned in January 2015 from her year in Vienna, Austria.
In August 2014 the Club sponsored Ed Boy dell as a District Global Grant Scholar. Ed left Australia in August 2014 for the UK to study for a year.
Other youth support included assistance for Bradley Fleming (third year MBA Group Training apprentice) to attend the Port Resolution School RAWCS project on Tanna Island in Vanuatu, Linden Mueller-Wong to attend Tasikoki Wildlife Rescue and Education Centre in North Sulawesi, Indonesia, and Chloie Eggins, a year 12 student at Dickson College, to join a Japan school trip.
International Service ($30,000 Disbursed)
The International Committee continued its work in key areas of need. Our flagship program of provision of safe drinking water in Laos through the Abundant Water program continued.
This year we continued a joint project with the Rotary Club of Oak Bay in Canada to provide medical supplies to the Bairo Pite Clinic in East Timor.
We also supported the work of other endeavors including Dr Luc in the Congo, Shelterbox, Rotarians against Malaria, Operation Cleft, and the Rotary Foundation.
Notably we assisted a University of Canberra student teacher to attend Cur Ardens Mlandizi, a farming project in Tanzania.
Members also provided assistance to Rotary programs such as ROMAC and the effort at a time of sadness and hardship following Cyclone Pam. Yvonne Robson Brian Goldstraw and Susan Alexander deserve special mention here.