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Tuesdays at 6:00 PM
The Emerald Hotel
415 Clarendon Street
South Melbourne, VIC 3205
0407 112 141
1st and 3rd Tuesdays of the Month
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BIue Illusion
We held a successful FUNDRAISER at Blue Illusion and raised $300 towards Tiny Sites project.  It was a delight to walk into the store and be greeted by the friendly staff, a glass of bubbly and some delicious morsels to eat.  There was a lot of chatter and lots of laughs along the way. 
Pam Dittmer was our model and Lauren was the model from Blue Illusion.  They were both ‘catwalk’ ready and injected a lot of fun into the event. The two different body shapes and heights showed the versatility of the styles on offer as there was so much choice. Many thanks to the catwalk team. Many thanks also to Blue Illusion and our attendees.
The following day I popped in to thank Carole, the manager, for her support of Rotary with some delicious chocolates for the staff.
Wendy Shan
Wendy Shan:
I was honoured to attend the 2022 Year 12 NYSF Program that ran from January 10th to 25th, 2022. I am a Year 12 student at The Mac. Robertson Girls' High School. I have always been more academically inclined and aspiring to pursue a career in the STEM field after I graduate from high school. Last year I completed Chinese and Maths Methods 3&4 and this year I will be completing, biology, specialist maths, chemistry and English.
We used a variety of communication channels, like the Whova app for webinars, task assignments and communication, discord for group networking and Zoom for smaller meetups. The options were abundant, ranging from coral reef preservation to defence drones, even Nobel Peace Winner speeches. There was a chat and Q&A function under each session too, meaning we all got the chance to make interactions with speakers, no matter if they were located in Australia, USA or Antarctica.
Among the many memorable activities I engaged in, the highlights were undoubtedly the career expos, the charismatic presenters and the science challenges.
Career Expo
The career expo was a series of 2hr sessions, delivered by 10-15 speakers from a variety of different fields in STEM, there to give insight into their daily lives in their work positions. I found this especially applicable for me, because as I'm approaching subject selections, I have been very intrigued and overwhelmed by the endless paths that could await me. I could barely fathom the idea that this one decision could essentially shape the course of my whole life. Perhaps it was this confusion that made the National Youth Science Forum such an enticing and must-attend opportunity for me.
With the speakers, we embarked on journeys through live tours in laboratories, analyses of data collection and mathematical formulas, as well as life stories that seemed to have a dozen twists and turns. I felt inspired by the passion each speaker seemed to contain for their job. There was a speaker meeting with us from a research camp located in Australia. She was the general medical practitioner there, covering all ailments whether it was tooth ache, fractures, or high blood pressure. She even acted as the chief veterinarian for the seals and penguins that could find themselves in a pickle. Just by looking at the shelves and shelves of medical equipment she managed, I could imagine the grand supply of knowledge she must exhibit to cover so many medical practices. But unlike many of us may assume, she did not feel at all tired or pressured by all this responsibility, instead she appeared to really love what she was doing and fulfilled knowing that there was more for her to learn and do. This sparked an epiphany in me. I realised that this is what it looks like to be chasing a dream!! Each new task brings her closer to attaining that.
Now each time I'm studying for an exam, reading a new book, or encountering a new idea, I like to think back on this story and ask myself: "What is my dream?". Even though I have yet to come to a definitive answer, I am no longer in a rush. Because another thing I learnt from the career expos is that the future does not need to be linear and that passions come naturally with age.
One of the scientists at the convention, Professor Mike Rogers taught me that in our lives, we should never do anything that limits our options, and instead always aim to be general then specific. He himself went from being a medical practitioner to being a medical research scientist, then a university lecturer. He assured us that none of this was in his original plans, yet the process of exploration has fostered so much growth with the realisation that medicine practice and theory are not mutually exclusive. We also met engineers who became entrepreneurs of scientific innovation, psychologists who became science news broadcasters.
Hearing all this offered me an inner solace to take my time and not rush into a career, to focus on the learning process rather than the eventual outcome, to purely love science like everyone else attending this program.
Charismatic Presenters/Challenge
The many whimsical and unique presenters at the event really made it even more remarkable and engaging.
A very notable guest was Dr Karl Kruszelnicki. I have always enjoyed his entertaining science books, so I really looked forward to finally meeting him and he did not disappoint. With his humorous presentation skills, he captivated the hearts of all the students attending this program. With colloquial language and occasional sarcasm, he was able to bridge the gap between us, as members of the public, and the professional scientists. Without all the complicated lingo, he took on the role to inspire and not only educate, introducing me to the idea of scientific communication.
This was solidified by a challenge where we as participants were given the opportunity to construct a form of scientific communication ourselves. The entries were blooming with creativity. Students used Tik Tok as a telecommunication pathway, made stop motion videos, wrote songs and raps. Accustomed to the duller side of science in the school curriculum, it was eye-opening on simply see how fun learning can be!
I approached Port Phillip School, amongst others towards the end of last year.  When the year began and a new variant was detected, I knew the school would be under strain with RAT procedures and mask wearing for some time so waited to for the end of term one to email again. Port Phillip School has classes from Prep to Year 12 and they average around five students per class.  It is a school for children with special needs.
During the holiday break, the principal of Port Phillip SDS, Juliet Cooper organised a meeting with me. After consulting with Juliet, I was given the go ahead to run a garden program with a group of the secondary students with their teacher, Tom.  We meet each Thursday at 1.30 to 2.30pm.  We have met two times so far and have opened our senses by smelling and touching various elements in the garden; spent lavender flowers, rosemary, peppercorn leaves, bark and shapes of flowers.  We have discussed briefly about the life cycle of a plant and the needs of plants. Last week we cut some rosemary and after stripping, put them into glasses of water, which the students will replace daily.  Hopefully, some time soon we will see roots beginning to emerge.
A couple of things really struck me and that is the passion the principal and the staff have for the students and the fun that the kids have.  The more enjoyment, the greater the learning.
Food Waste
An estimated 30% of all food produced globally is lost or wasted every year.
Rotarians are a practical canny lot and partnered with SecondBite very early on
in their development to correct this statistic.  The graphic highlights
SecondBite’s wonderful work for the disadvantaged and the environment.
Our Food Waste lunch is on in less than 2 weeks, and we hope you take the
opportunity to book.
Don’t delay!! Please book your place today for this inaugural event and
support our activity in the Rotary Area of Focus – The Environment.
WFK is a registered charity established in 1998 by Rotary Club of Scarborough WA in partnership with Christian Brothers. The objective is to provide wheelchairs to families with disabled children living in developing nations and the latest count is 52,500 wheelchairs provided free of charge and delivered via disability centres in those countries. WFK operates totally with volunteers, so each wheelchair is provided at a cost of only $250, which is required to cover the cost of materials.  WFK is an outstanding successful charity project of Rotary club of Scarborough. You can find details of the fully adjustable wheelchair we produce and examples of recipient children on their website
Marg introduced me to Russell Hayes through the email and I have spent an interesting time reading all about their ventures.  I am sharing a small section with you.
The introduction of the self-propelling rims also helped to highlight the risk offingers slipping into the moving spokes of the wheels. Thanks to the efforts ofvolunteer Peter Hoo, we now have spoke covers / guards fixed onto the wheels,
which both protect the fingers and provide a little extra bit of publicity.
Hopefully everyone wins!

Rotary Park
St. Kilda Rotary Park in Jacka Boulevard is finally undergoing a transformation, albeit a different style to what was initially agreed upon.  No longer will there be water features where the public could enjoy by running under and through but a small play equipment suitable for five children at a time, swings and natural play equipment using logs and large flat rocks will be installed.  There is wrap around seating around a tree, which I suspect was already there before the works commenced,  and an area is currently being worked but I wasn’t sure what that will become.  I spoke to one of the workmen but unfortunately, he was unable to tell me what was happening to the wall with the Rotary insignia and the name of the playground.
I visited South Melbourne Park Primary School, which is award winning for its architectural style.  The school incorporates the historic Albert Park Signal Depot and Drill Hall buildings and is located in the Albert Park Reserve.  The building retains many of the features that were part of the original building with examples of beautiful woodwork columns and fireplaces.  The additions are second to none. I was struck by the quiet working environment as I walked around with the acting principal, Matthew Vines.
I was invited back to work with 75 Year 2 students to discuss pollination, pollinators, parts of flowers and the critical need for pollination pathways.
Later we went out to the open space to fill pots with soil, strip cuttings and plant in small pots along with some seeds.  The students will look after these and also 40 tubes of plants that I collected from Bilis Nursery.  The students will be looking after the seedlings and cuttings until they are ready to be planted out, hopefully at the Towers.
It was a lot of fun with a sprinkling of chaos when we got to the planting stage.  However, a lot of fun was had.
I have been invited back to run a lunchtime garden club and am looking for a couple of green thumbs.  Mine are not!
When I was at the nursery, I collected a bag full of finger limes, which were delicious.  I took them to the school so the children could share them with the teachers.  The picture of the tree against the brick wall is the lime tree and is an attractive feature.  If you have space in your garden, I encourage you to plant one and reap the benefits in the years ahead.

Dentist visit
I went to the dentist last week and chatted away to my outstanding dentist in Hampton, Joanne, about Rotary.  Joanne was really interested to hear the many projects we are involved in and the partnerships we make.  When I told her about the Backpacks4VicKids program, she raced out the back and came in with a bag of toothpastes and a bag of toothbrushes, many small ones especially for small children, as a donation.  So, the moral, fellow Rotarians, is keep talking even when in the dentist’s chair!