Peter G was our very able Chairperson introduced to us by stand-in-Sergeant Tony R. Peter invited Geoff Gledhill to give us Invocation and Margaret L to present the Loyal Royal Toast. Peter welcomed our Guest Speakers Chris White and John Oxlade and our Rotary Exchange Student Jade. It is always a pleasure to have Jade with us. She lights up the room with her stunning smile.
Grant took us to Maputo, Republic of Mozambique. Mozambique is a country in Southeast Africa. It shares borders Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Eswatini (Swaziland) and South Africa. The coasts are the Indian Ocean and the Mozambique Channel which s between Mozambique and Madagascar. From 1st and 5th Century AD Bantu speaking people arrived from further north and west. During the 11th century Arab, Persian and Somali merchants began settlements and establishing ports along the coasts. In 1498 Vasco da Gama the Portuguese explorer “discovered” the land and in 1505 the Portuguese began colonizing and forming settlements. Mozambique gained independence from Portuguese rule, becoming the People’s Republic of Mozambique. Maputo is the Capital with a population of 1million, with the over-all population of 29 million. Originally it was a fishing village in the 1500s.Byy 1800 Mozambique had become one of the world’s major slave-trading centers. In 1781 the Portuguese established a fort named Lourenco Marques after the navigator who had explored the area in 1544. A town grew around the fort about 1850 and in 1898, the colony relocated its capital from Stone Town on the Island of Mozambique. In 1975 the city became the capital and rename Maputo. Grant asked us to be up-standing to toast President Ana Paula Relvas and the Members of the Rotary Club of Maputo, Republic of Mozambique. The club was chartered on 29th June 1990 and has chartered a Rotaract Club. The 15 members meet at Polana Serena Hotel on Thursday at 6.00pm. Thank you Grant for once again giving us an insight of a club on the other-side of the world.
Pres Ian once again welcomed our guests and welcomed Kevin back from his travels. He advised us that Greg’s plum trees had produced an overabundance of fruit and we should help ourselves. What a delicious treat. He once again thanked Peter L for organizing the fantastic meeting last week with Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper. Pres. Ian continued by advising us of the motion that needed to be put before the club. At the last Board meeting PP Peter O’B move that a donation that had been previously been approved for the Moira Kelly Fund be withdrawn and to be given to the Moira Kelly Creating Hope Foundation. This Foundation provides comfort, hope, protection and safety to children and displaced women from overseas and locally who need it most. The motion was carried and passed. Geoff Gartly talked of his initiative that follows from the donation that the club gave towards the farmers suffering from the drought. The money was handled by a Rotary Club in NSW and the idea is to spend time on the farms that were assisted and meet the farmers. The idea is similar to the one that Alan had organized for the Black Saturday Victims who had enjoyed spending time with our members.
We had 2 guest speakers who are working on the same project. Chris White from the Kingston City Council is a landscape architect and horticulturist and is interested to improving public open space and has been with the council for 20 years. She is working together with John Oxlade who is from a_space Australia which specializes in activity equipment. They told us about the garden/park space next to the St. Kilda Football Club with the aim of merging both properties to change the Community Space. It has been noted that there is an increase of people using the area with great enjoyment. There is a new carpark associated with the Bowling Club and in developing the social area a “ping-pong” table will be available. The park at Perry St which was previously unutilized will have an active exercise area include. A-space equipment is locally manufactured in Victoria and can be changed to 3 people ability. John explained that as a society we have more obese people because our lives have become busier and therefore we spend less time on fitness. He further explained that that as a diverse community with dexterity difficulties and age range planning has to be thoughtful. The “outdoor Gym” will be set on St. Kilda Football colors. These “gyms” are built to stringent safety standards and the range offers a complete workout system. The area is safe for people from 14 years to 90 years and can have up to 16 people at one time. Partners and co-funders such as Rotary can have signage space. The project costs up to $100,000. All the equipment is super strong and long lasting. Thank you Chris and John for coming to us and sharing the ideas and your commitment of yet another community sharing project.
Chairperson Peter reminded us that this is the 10th year of the Black Saturday Fire which destroyed so many lively hoods and lives. In recollections of this dreadful time Peter thanked Alan for arranging activities for the Bush Fire Survivors. Tony R was our Sergeant for the day. He began by wishing all our Chinese friends a Happy New Year of the Pig. We hope that this year will be a kind and prosperous one with good health and friendship. Tony decided that it would be appropriate to use winners and losers of races to fine us all. Always good fun and most profitable. Pres. Ian closed the meeting, happily announcing that Leonie (Tony’s Wife) was recovering well from her fall and that he was looking forward to the next meeting and that we should BE THE INSPIRATION
Zilla (Bulletin Reporter)