Rotary Club of North Melbourne has ensured that the ‘democracy sausage’ is a feature of our local polling booths.

The club ran the sausage sizzle at North Melbourne Primary School at the federal election and turned the day into a successful fundraiser.

Setting up the equipment and cooking a few sausages is not as simple as it sounds. There’s a lot of organising and always a few snags along the way.

The club’s first job was to estimate the quantities of food required. We put in big orders of beef sausages, veggie burgers, hamburgers, eggs, bacon, and onions, as well as three types of sauces and lots of bread and rolls.

Rotary also had to jump a few necessary bureaucratic hurdles to get approval from the school, the Australian Electoral Commission, and the City of Melbourne.

Club members arrived by 7.00 am to set up the equipment and start cooking. We kept serving until around 3.30 pm when the food ran out. Fortunately, that was about the same time that the queues of likely customers started to dwindle.

We had 24 volunteers on the day and collected close to $4,000. While we have several uses for the money, we contribute to the school fund that pays for school camps and excursions as well as uniforms for students whose parents struggle with such costs. We expect our first payment will be about $1,000.

North Melbourne Rotary happily admits its prices were set at a level to make a profit with the aim of using that money to do as much good as possible.

At $4 a sausage and $5 an egg-and-bacon roll, they were probably offered the dearest election sausages in Australia. However, of the roughly 1,000 sales, only two people commented about the price. In fact, many generously left the change with us.

This one event took up more than 150 volunteer hours and leftover food went to Missionaries of Charity in Fitzroy

MOOMBA BBQ- Small club's big snag handout

North Melbourne Rotary Club is one of the smaller clubs in District 9800 but runs a high-profile and well-paid event every Moomba Parade. Its task is to feed free hot sausages, hamburgers, and veggie burgers to the parade’s participants and helpers when the parade finishes. The venue is at the Melbourne Grammar School staging area. They have been engaged by the City of Melbourne for the Moomba Parade BBQ for over 10 years and have a very good reputation there.