Mixing it up as we move out of COVID
As we wiggle our way out of COVID, several things have become evident around the ways we will meet in the future. At our meeting on 28th October, it was apparent that many members are cautious about meeting in person while there is no vaccine available. It will be challenging to book a permanent venue when many members stay away. Our weekly attendance on Zoom is just over 50% and based on those numbers; we will need to reinvent our Clubs meetings. Suggestions have ranged from different weekly formats to meeting on other days at various locations.
Zoom will still need to be the tie to include members who do not want to meet in person. Stay tuned!
Speaking of Projects
I am going out on a limb here but the weekly meeting is a great place to get a few ideas bouncing around and this week was no exception. While we have been trapped in our Zoom bubble, our member attendance has not been encouraging. It is hard to move forward without the whole club backing itself to come out of COVID ready to engage the community. I have had many conversations with members who want to get going, but we have a lot of talking and not a lot of doing. The idea that you drop an idea on the table and by some magic it comes to fruition is a myth. If an idea inspires you, own it and do it!
As an example, last year, I saw an opportunity to help BlazeAid. With a bit of help from Isobel. Cheryl, Maureen and District 7475 (New Jersey, USA), owned it and did it. Global Grants for COVID owned it and did it. Multi-District Conference registrations owned it and did it. District website owned it and did it. DIK pickups with DIK Rep Roger Thornton owned it and did it. Club IT, owned it doing it. Being President, owning and having a go at doing it. You get the idea. If you have an idea, own it and do it.
The Board cannot approve a project with no leader who will carry the project to completion. An idea is only an idea until someone has enough drive to turn it into reality. If I can turn a few projects into reality, anyone can do the same. Speaking for myself, if I have a great idea and I have time available, the right connections and a green light, it is happening! Rotary creates opportunities if you want to own it and do it!
Over the last few years there have been plenty of members dropping ideas saying "we should do that". With most of them, I would agree, we should certainly be doing a lot more than we do, but these projects are the proposer's projects and should be lead and delivered by the proposer using the help of the respective Director and members that want to be involved. To be a vibrant, active club, we need to realise that we are all responsible for action in our community and need to show leadership. Rotary is a far-reaching organisation, so our reach to do some incredible work is way beyond just the members in our Club. We can do just about anything if we really want to put in the effort.
So let's take a walk back in time for the newer members to understand what is happening. Back in 2003, the Rotary Club of Berwick was young, vibrant and had an appetite to do great things. Most members were in their 40's and 50's and couldn’t get enough. Senior members, Ray Martin and Peter Binning ensured the Club knew about Rotary and there was a strong program of Rotary information which was welcomed and embraced by many. Training at District level was of great quality and delivered with enthusiasm, with a huge uptake across the District. And then it changed! As our membership aged, we became a fundraising club and began to do less project work. Rotary training and mentorship slipped away as a focus of our club. Without Rotary training and learning about the strength Rotary has in many areas including the 7 areas of focus, we have come to a crossroad. 
I have a good appreciation of what Rotary can do through my Rotary contacts outside the club and in different parts of the world. I would love for every member of MY club to have stories of how Rotary made a difference to prove that our organisation actually matters and every member of our club is serious about making a difference. Let's get off the wall and get back into action!
You matter, I Care
Wondering how you can help 2019-2020 Bushfire affected people during Covid restrictions?
Try the Bushfire recovery support initiative: “You Matter, I Care”
The recovery phase of the 2019-2020 bushfires is far from over, not only for those directly affected by the fires, but for any bushfire affected person – those personally impacted, volunteers and workers – everyone matters!
A small but meaningful project has been developed by Rhonda Abotomey who lost three family members in the Black Saturday fires in the Latrobe Valley.  In the wake of the 2019-2020 fires, Rhonda created and launched packs of 12 postcards to be posted to a chosen recipient once a month for 12 months.
The post card fronts carry an image and a positive message.  The card back is blank for your own message if you wish. Each kit contains instructions for the sender and a message card to the recipient to accompany your first postcard.
The Rotary Club of Berwick members and friends can help by simply sending 12 “You Matter” cards – one card a month.  Cost? 12 postage stamps!  The kits are supplied for free. 
How? Once you decide you would like to be involved, contact Jane:  She has three kits ready to go with access to as many packs as we need.  Recipient contact details are with the East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid Committee. A name and contact details will be forwarded to you with your support kit. 
This initiative was brought to Rotary by District Emergency Management Chair Janne Speirs during Adrian’s Governor year and was advertised through the District Newsletter.  All credit to Janne and her team.
Invitation to Rotary's 'End Trachoma' Project
Posted by Sam McCurdy
This is a small doable project specifically suited to our club during our COVID breakout. If we can find a leader to organise the procurement of the items (with help), arrange a point of assembly for a few members to collate the items into individual packs, then we have a project with significant impact! 45 members, 45 packs. Don't want to get involved? How about putting a few dollars ($50) to make it happen anyway!
Walking to End Polio Now 
Our team in the 'Walk with us to End Polio' event, where the Berwick Boomers & Shakers have already raised $3,804 for this worthy cause. The aim is to be sponsored to walk for a targeted distance during October to raise funds.  You can set your own target distance.
We are currently in 6th place on the Team Leaderboard, but we can do better! Teams from Hawthorn, Camberwell and Southbank occupy the top three places, having raised between $8,585 and $5,681 each.
The link to enable supporters of the Rotary Club of Berwick to join the team or donate to the cause is: 
If you have not yet joined the team and/or donated, there is still time, as the event runs for all of October. Go team Berwick! Another great involvement by 10 members of the Rotary Club of Berwick to make a difference in the world!
ROMAC helps Vincent return home to Honiara
Posted by Sam McCurdy
Rotary Oceania Medical Aid for Children (ROMAC) has saved dozens of Pacific Islanders by bringing sick babies and children to Canberra for critical care, which is donated by Canberra Hospital under a memorandum of understanding. They provide surgical treatment for children from developing countries in our Pacific Region, that is not accessible to them in their home country.
Their recent efforts were recognised in an article featured on the ABC TV Breakfast Show at 6:45 am on Monday 26th October, featuring Vincent Toto from Honiara in the Solomon Islands. 
Vincent's life was set to end before it really began. His 23-year-old mother, Cosinta Matesonia, endured fear and uncertainty as she fought to keep her malnourished son alive following his birth in May last year.
Paediatric surgeon, Dr Celine Hamid, who works at the Canberra Hospital, says Vincent's life came to be in her hands after he was born with a complex anomaly: his oesophagus was not connected to his stomach, leaving him to waste away helplessly. "If he had been left in Honiara, he would have been dead in a few days to maybe a month," she explained. "Because these kids are born without the food pipe, which is the oesophagus, they drown in their own saliva. They aspirate and get lung problems.  There are no paediatric surgeons in Honiara or in most of the Pacific countries. Fiji has two," she says. "So what happens is that when the baby is born, the general surgeon is called to check the child; then they contact us at the Canberra Hospital, pictures are sent, and we contact Rotary."

ROMAC brought Vincent to Australia as a 2-month old for urgent surgery. He stayed with his mother and a Rotary family in Canberra while he had a series of operations.  He underwent three significant surgeries, dozens of gastroscopies and ended up in the neonatal intensive care unit on a few occasions, during his 16 months of treatment in Canberra.
Vincent and his mum Cosinta
on arrival in Australia
Vincent celebrates his 1st birthdayVincent ready to go home
Dr Hamid was one of many Canberrans who farewelled Vincent and Ms Matesonia recently, leaving the pediatric surgeon to reflect on her "gratifying" work.  "I've seen him grow and become normal — from a really malnourished, small child with congenital problems to a boy who has a future," she says.  "Because he came here, he turned one in May, he's an active cheeky little child … his milestones are all developing."
Well done ROMAC!
Rotary has Talent!
'Rotary's Got Talent' is coming on Sunday 8 November!

Can you sing, dance, juggle, or do you have any other talent? Then we want to see it!
The event is a fundraiser for District Governor's Partner's Project - Rotarians Against Malaria, with a suggested tax-deductible donation of $10 to
Invitation to Casey-Cardinia Rotaract's AGM
Posted by Sam McCurdy
This is an official invitation to Casey-Cardinia Rotaract Club’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on November 19th 2020. All members of Casey-Cardinia Rotaract, Narre Warren Rotary and Berwick Rotary are invited to attend.
The AGM will occur before our normal scheduled meeting and will reflect on the actions of the club in the last financial year; in particular, highlighting the actions made by the board under Past President Campbell de Kretser.
The meeting details are as follows:
Date: Thursday November 19th 2020
Time: 7:30 pm
Location: Online (via Zoom)
If you wish to attend, please respond by e-mail to, so that we can ensure when the Zoom details are published, they are sent to all those who have acknowledged their wish to attend.
Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns in the meantime.
Liam Hines
Past Secretary
Casey-Cardinia Rotaract Club
Issue  18
28th October 2020

Join our meeting

7.20pm for 7.30pm start
Book into a Meeting
Coffee Catchup
Nov 07, 2020
10:00 AM – 10:30 AM
District Governor Annual Checkup
Nov 18, 2020
7:20 PM – 8:30 PM
View entire list
Executives & Directors
Rotary Foundation Chair
International Service Director
Vice President
Immediate Past President
Membership Chair
Public Image Chair
Ex Officio Officer
Youth and New Ideas
Ex Officio Officer
Avenues of Service Chair
Fundraising Chair
Club Protection Officer
On to Conference
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Laury Gordyn
October 6
Gary Castricum
October 11
Alf Giesen
October 23
David Collyer
October 28
Shoey Schumacher
October 29
Tim Moore
November 7
Rosemarie Hughes
November 18
Maureen Scott
November 30
Spouse Birthdays
Marlene Cooper
October 20
Helen Lay
October 23
Wendy Froggatt
October 23
Henny Castricum
October 27
Tim Moore
November 7
Judy Button
November 11
Helen Rosenthal
November 17
Sheeja Prabhakaran
November 26
Bob Lay AM
Helen Lay
October 3
Eric Boon
Wendy Boon
October 7
Join Date
Betty Tudge
October 9, 2003
17 years
John Rosenthal
October 9, 2003
17 years
David Grant
October 21, 1999
21 years
David Button
October 28, 2004
16 years
Eric Boon
October 31, 1996
24 years
Cheryl Zuhlsdorff
November 1, 2017
3 years
Gaetano Fina
November 1, 2017
3 years
Gary Castricum
November 1, 2017
3 years
Laury Gordyn
November 3, 1994
26 years
Gerald Treasure
November 10, 1988
32 years
Gus Dominguez
November 23, 2006
14 years

Seventy-five percent of the world’s plant species are dependent on pollinators, such as the monarch, to survive


After returning home, many students miss their lives abroad. Rotex helps keep the international connections going


Deepa Willingham established a learning center in poverty stricken Piyali, India to provide a better future for girls


Contact tracing has been a cornerstone of public health for much of the past century, even before the novel coronavirus.


Rotary’s World Polio Day Online Global Update on 24 October hails this year’s historic achievement in polio eradication.

ClubRunner Mobile
Playground re-purposing
On Tuesday our Club removed a playground as part of Rotary Overseas Recycled Playgrounds (RORP) in Noble Park. This is the first one for the "Rotary Club of Greater Dandenong and Endeavour Hills. We have a good relationship with the local Council who will be using RORP for the future removal of playgrounds in the area.
The advantages to the Councils, Schools and commercial enterprises that want to replace their playgrounds is that it is:
1. Cheaper for Rotary to be involved in removal (i.e. saves ratepayers money)
2. Reduces landfill
3. Helps a community overseas
4. Makes you feel better by saving money and the environment while helping others!
Normally the removal is all done in one day with a contractor (and the playground loaded onto the RORP trailer) but due to logistics, the uprights will be removed, concrete broken off and the uprights taken to the RORP shed where retired tradesmen volunteer their time to refurbish the playground (this one is going to Sri Lanka and already booked into a container with other Aid items managed by Rotary Donations in Kind).
A big thanks to the Club members involved.
Something the Rotary Club of Berwick could be involved with.
November is the month we support our FOUNDATION
The Rotary Foundation allows us to do our work by providing funds for our projects. Only by supporting our own charity are we able to change the world one project at a time.
The Rotary Foundation has supported the Rotary Club of Berwick in the last 12 months with contributions to our BlazeAid project, further support for our Philippine water project and our involvement with three Global COVID grants with our partners in District 7475, New Jersey, USA. Without our own Foundation Charity, we could not do the work we do.
Please support the Rotary Foundation in November. Contact PP Mark Caulfield for details of how to donate to our fully tax deductible charity.
The CLIMATE & PEACE FORUM is an initiative of the Rotary Club of Sydney Cove, supported by the Rotary Clubs of Sydney and Darling Harbour.  While initiated by Rotarians, this quarterly forum is open to everyone. 
Through engagement with concerned individuals we hope to promote climate action generally and to increase advocacy within the government and corporate community; to raise awareness with Rotarians and NGOs; to identify and promote activities and to establish partnerships. 
We look forward to you joining us on the webinar.
Steady and Strong
Summary of the COVID-19 World Profile
Extracted from the Rotary Club of Traralgon Central's October Bulletin
Compare these figures for COVID-19 numbers on October 17 and July 30:
New Infections           30/7                 17/10                Increase
FRANCE                     1377               25,086                 X 18.2 
UK                                846               15,650                  X 18.4 
VICTORIA                    723                        2                 Avg 4.6.    

30 - Including Australia, New Zealand, Laos, Singapore, Fiji, Cameroon, Cambodia, Brunei, Timor Leste.
14 – Including China, South Africa, South Korea, Egypt, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia.
90 - Including USA, UK, Italy, Israel, Ireland, Norway, Argentina, Cuba, Finland, France, Spain.

Both the BBC and CNN have reported and praised our achievements in Victoria.  If you examine Ireland’s new regime of restrictions, it is a cut and paste of what we have done.

Thank you to our sponsors.