Posted by Sam McCurdy on Jul 02, 2021
Rotary Berwick & District Benevolent Society (A project of the Rotary Club of Berwick)
The main Office Bearers for the Rotary Club are also Office Bearers for the Rotary Berwick & District Benevolent Society (The Society).  As such, the 'Society' has been included as a standing agenda item at all the club’s Board meetings.
PP Gus Dominguez became our representative for the 'Society' on the Casey North Community Information Support Service (CNCISS) Board, replacing David Collyer.  Funds raised by the ‘Society’ were again mainly provided by donations from the Magistrate’s Court, with a small contribution from coin donations made by the public at Coles Berwick Supermarket.
The ‘Society’ conducted a successful 2020 Christmas collection of food and toy items, involving seven local Secondary schools and public donations at the Berwick Market Square.  These items were delivered to CNCISS in Narre Warren, where they were made up into Christmas hampers to be distributed to those in need within the local community.
In March, six Rotarians and two CNCISS staff members sorted 3 pallets of new clothes, which had been donated by a large Retailer through Rotary Donations in Kind.   From the sorting, CNCISS received 30 boxes and 20 boxes of the clothing were also provided to Windermere Child and Family Services for distribution to those in need within the local communiity.  Other items donated by Rotary Donations in Kind to the ‘Society’ included 300 pairs of CROC shoes and 132 walking frames.  These were also offered to CNCISS.  It became clear that both CNCISS and Windermere do not have sufficient storage capacity, or sufficient staff, to handle large quantities of donated items such as this.
In June, the ‘Society’ was part of a review of selected charities by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC), to ensure that they were still meeting the requirements for charity registration.  Based on our responses to the review, the ACNC confirmed that the Society has a continuing entitlement to be registered with the public benevolent institution (PBI) subtype.