THIS WEEK'S MEETING: 15th March 2021 (#2627 Patrick Sherry Vitae Challenge [Physically, and also with a Zoom attendance option]
Glasgow-born Patrick, is a past member of Toowong RC, having relocated to a more geographically-suited eastside Club in 2020.
Patrick started out his adult working life Initially as an English/History teacher, but gradually moved into strategic management, taking on roles with the Commonwealth Schools Commission, and later the Criminal Justice Commission (assisting on the Fitzgerald Inquiry).
He continued to develop a career in the Qld Public Service, subsequently managing the Mt. Isa Education District and, briefly working as Departmental Liaison Officer to Premier Anna Bligh, he helped restructure Disability Services Qldand was a significant contributor to the Carmody Inquiry into child protection (which advocated early intervention to safeguard at 'risk' children).
In Retirement (December 2016), Patrick joined the Endeavour Foundation where he had various roles, including Chair of the Abuse and Neglect Committee. In July 2018, he joined 'Life Without Barriers' a charitable provider of foster care for Children, and support services for the Disabled and the Aged.
Patrick is currently Chairman ofVitae Ltd, a small-scale registered charity specifically aimed at providing social services to young children, aged 6 up to 15 years.
One of Vitae's project is already well know to club members - the Vitae Challenge, consists of a 5-day camp for 11 to 13 year old boys seen to be 'at risk' due to financial difficulties or anti-social behaviour.
(VC was introduced to the Club several years ago by Ross Pitt, who is also a Vitae Director.)
At this week's meeting, TRC members will be introduced to some of the Vitae Board members, plus two boys from the most recent intake - prize-winners for the 'most improved boy', and the 'most reliable attendee' - and their mentors.
LAST WEEK'S MEETING: Carolin Bontrup Member Profile "Me in a nutshell -
A snapshot of my last 30 years"
Carolin, a Toowong RC member since 2020, is currently undertaking her PhD at UQ, doing follow-up research based on her Masters thesis:
"Sitting Behaviour amongst
Carolin grew up in one of the most popular cities in Germany, Muenster, located in the NW close to the Dutch border. One of the reasons for its popularity is because everyone owns and rides a bicycle.
Close to Muenster, Carolin's family has a Chicken farm, selling eggs as well as veggies, so she grew up surrounded by lots of animals.
The picture [above] shows her sitting on the knees of her granddad.
She says that importantly it shows the moment she decided to become a vegetarian(once she was old enough to make own decisions!)
Having started walking at only 9 months, Carolin said that early movement determined her life, such that she decided she wanted to become a physiotherapist.
She did her first half-marathon in Berlin in 2018 at 27 years, quite a late age for a self-professed 'born runner'.
Graduation Ceremony following completion of undergraduate study,
with Carolin surrounded by graduating classmates - all Health professionals: Occupational therapists, Speech pathologists, Midwives, etc.
Noting her position in the photo - 'hiding in the front row, in a black dress' - she confessed that she had just returned from Sydney, where she picked up a Tim-Tam addiction!
In 2018, having competed her Masters,
and about to head off (on her 2nd trip) to Australia, Carolin received a prestigious award for her Thesis: "Sitting Behaviour amongst Sedentary Workers''.
In 2019 she was granted a PhD scholarship at UQ.
Carolin enjoys many things beyond her work and research, namely road trips (preferring the coast or hilly country side); hiking and climbing, unicorns and, not to forget, handsome guys.
Carolin advised that one year into her PhD research, she has conducted several interviews (which included some TRC members) on 'work ability in older workers'.
She has not yet commenced the surveys - the plan is to finalise the interviews, and then analyse the results to maximise the actual surveys. Things have also slowed down slightly due to the preparation of a grant application.
Carolin thanked the TRC members,
for their warm welcome
... and her 'Aussie' family, the Marrs & Danielle (pictured at Straddie)
Darrel, a retired accountant and business man - industrial chemist, army officer, financial planner - plus Chemistry teacher & University lecturer, went to Cambodia in 2015for a holiday with his wife Marion. While there, they saw the desperate need for clean water and sanitation in a rural village near Siem Reap.
Darrel has spent most of the last 6 years trying to help out, such that he has been able to install 363 septic-tank toilets, plus 108 clean water bores in and around Siem Reap! Most of the work has been done almost entirely under his own steam, and with the help of his 'assistant' Marie Liddell, who also attended last week's meeting.
Darrel himself is only new to Rotary, having established links with the worldwide service organisation - whose stated purpose is to bring together business and professional leaders, in order to provide humanitarian service - in the past year.
"There is no need so basic as having clean water to drink, but over half the population of Cambodia does not have access to clean water. In the countryside, most people rely on water from rivers, streams and ponds. This water is often polluted and is a major cause of health issues in children."
Darrel said that while Cambodia has a lot to offer tourists, when you look 'behind the scenes', you realise it's a different world. Darrel's late wife Marion, a nurse, saw the hopelessness and poverty of village life, and in particular the desperation of the young girls and women who had little or no access to clean water for drinking and washing, or sanitary toilet facilities, especially after the rains.
While Marion used her nursing skills to attend to some of the immediate medical issues, Darrel turned his attention to resolving the lack of clean water, by drilling some clean water bores, and to the construction of proper sanitary toilets.
One of the things that continues to symbolise Cambodia is the abundance of land mines, creating havoc all along the Thai border - a leftover from the Vietnam War days.
Princess Di did a great job focussing world attention on the problem, but there are still 5 million of them around the NW of Siem Reap today.
Just another thing that the locals have to deal with each day!
Darrel soon learned that clean water, and sanitary toilets, were critical to developing countries. Often people are kept in poverty, as money is wasted, and medicine is not available, when the population are being continually sick.
Until clean water and sanitary toilet conditions are available, none of the 'other' things can really be resolved.
In contrast to Wes's work in PNG, the aquafers around Siem Reap are only about 20m - 30m down and the water is relatively clean. There is quite a bit of arsenic in the water throughout SE Asia, but in Cambodia it is concentrated further south, near Phnom Penh.
The Toilet construction was a challenge because of the 'easy going' nature of Cambodians - for example, laying bricks without any proper foundations, etc.
Darrel's team showed the people how to 'do better' and they learned very quickly.
Seven rows of bricks provide a base for the structure so that it can be used as a wash room.
This is very important for the women as they normally have no privacy when washing. Where possible local suppliers and tradesmen (becoming quite skilled) are used.
While Clean Water & Sanitary Toilets are the main focus of Darrel's Cambodia Clean Water project, the team are constantly confronted with other issues that simply cannot be overlooked...
When Covid-19 hit, it killed international travel and tourism and the villages that relied on tourist's were struggling, even starving. Darrel and his team were feeding 52 families with rice and hygienic protein foods.
They also encouraged the villagers to return to their original farming roots by providing them with seed and farming know-how. Some fabulous vegetable gardens (in their backyards) have resulted.
One issue that Marion picked up on early was that the kids were burning off plastic with other rubbish. The resulting fumes are carcinogenic so, five years ago Darrel's group started an program to educate the locals - signs, posters, etc - about the danger.
Weekly plastic collections have been introduced to remove the problem, and the plan is to bring in some recycling processes (when possible) in the future.
Marion also picked up on the fact that only 10% of girls in rural area attend high school. The boys get through OK but, after middle school, the girls tend to drop out.
Currently six students are being sponsored with scholarships.
The boys in the image (at right) are siblings of the sponsored girls - Darrel said that it seemed unfair to exclude them.
Mon 22 Mar
Roger & Glenda Hogg
Africa 1974 Overland - Part 2
Sat 20 Mar
via Webinar (tickets sold out)
Rotary Peace Fellows Seminar (see below)
DG Neil Black
D9600 Conference 'Outside the Box', Kingaroy
Mon 29 Mar
Rae Cross +Stephanie Rice
Vitae Challenge +Albert Park (APFLC)
Mon 29 Mar
Fri 9 Apr
Sat 10 Apr
Working Bee (from 8am)
APFLC - Albert Park Flexible Learning Centre
D9600 PETS (via Zoom)
Presidents-Elect Training Seminar
Sun 2 May
The 7 Sopranos (2pm - 3:30pm)
'Opera in the Gardens' Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens (see below)
Luther Heights, Coolum Beach
Luther Heights, Coolum Beach
CLUB INFORMATION/NEWS Members please note: All past Club Bulletins can be accessed directly from our Website.
From the Home page, select the News menu option, then click on Weekly Bulletins.
Bulletins are listed, with most recent at the top - click on the date to access a specific issue.
Working with Children [Blue] Card
Club members should note that BernieC has taken over the Blue Card duties from JanelleB and has now registered us on the Blue Card Services organisation portal. This enables us to access all Club members' Blue Card information (eg. card numbers, expiry dates, etc).
The key issue for us is that some member's registration needs to be updated, and several have expired. A blue card is valid for two years from the date of issue.
Bernie will advise members individually
about any registration requirements or cards needing renewal.
'From feeling to healing:
embracing emotions in peacebuilding and a pandemic'
Save The Date: Saturday, 20th March, 2021 TBC whether this event will be in person or hybrid via Zoom 11:00am - 6:00pm
The Class XVIII Rotary Peace Fellows presenting at this seminar are nearing the completion of their Masters in Peace & Conflict degrees at the University of Queensland.
Many of the presentations draw not only from their studies, but also from the Applied Fieldwork Experience undertaken over the summer break,
which allows our Peace Fellows to extend their professional and practical skills.
Performing from the heart of the Mt Coot-tha Botanical Gardens,
The 7 Sopranos "Australia's Most Beautiful Voices" will perform a repertoire of opera and musical classics,
and joined by 'The Australian Pavarotti' Rosario La Spina
Venue: Mt. Coot-tha Botanical Gardens
When: Sunday 2nd May 2pm to 3.30 pm