Happy New Year

Last year we got our Rotary Year off and running with another good zoom meeting. The meeting was well attended and our speaker John Ryan really gave us a great update about the workings of Joseph's Corner.

It was the first time we have had anyone talk about Joseph's Corner other than Sr. Jean Dwyer. But she is being hampered by a stoke that is affecting her left arm and while she still holds the office of CEO she is being forced to reduce her involvement. After all she has been at it for 21 years now and she was 65 when she started.

It was good to hear from Herbson that his wife and 2 children are making progress on their journey to join him here in Melbourne from Malawi. Hopefully, they will all be together next month.

At the meeting it was decided not to have an in-person meeting for a little while yet so this weeks meeting has been changed to a Zoom and the Mercure Hotel will be ready for us in 2 weeks on 3rd February if we are ready to come back then

Since our last meeting, our club has received our account for our member's RDU subscriptions and it has been paid. 

We also received a couple of Rotary emails. One from the Rotary Club of Melbourne advised that they are able to supply RAT tests.

Their email read as follows:

Over the past few weeks we have become very aware of the situation regarding the spread of Covid within the community and the impact this is having on everyone.

 The changes surrounding testing and the mandated and extensive need for access to Rapid Antigen Self Testing Kits have impacted many organizations and individuals, especially the charitable organizations with which Rotary has many contacts, but also businesses with which we are connected and essential workers amongst our family and friendship circles. 

 Through his medical supplies business President-Elect nominee (2023/24) Dr. Chris Sotiropoulos has access to significant quantities of ATAGI approved Rapid Antigen Tests, which subject to demand, can be delivered within a week to 10 days.  We are coordinating with other District 9800 Clubs, and other Victorian Rotary Districts to assemble firm orders by the pallet load (4,000+ twin-test packs) of RAT’s that can be supplied while the retail supply of tests is catching up with demand.  Bob Glindemann has indicated that we will be able to store and manage collection of Testing kit orders from the DIK warehouse in Footscray.  

 Each kit supplied includes 2 self-tests.  

 The kits are ATAGI approved and manufactured in Australia.

 The kits are available at a cost - of $22.00 including GST for kits of two self-tests.  They will be delivered to the DIK Warehouse in Footscray from where Clubs will be asked to collect their full order.

 If you or someone you know needs to get speedy access to RAT’s please complete and return the revised attached Rotary Melbourne order form and payment to the Rotary Melbourne Office.  

 There is no minimum or maximum applicable to orders placed within the club.  Your order will need to be by payment in full - see full pricing details in the attached order form.

 Please note that this initiative is intended as short-term, to assist charities, businesses, and people in need to gain access to RAT tests that are at present difficult to find in retail outlets.  While Rotary may purchase some of the test kits for distribution to charities or individuals in need, we are not underwriting the purchase, hence the need for payment in full when ordering.

If you would like to purchase some test kits please email ASAP on page@ghp.biz or advise me at the meeting tomorrow as I will be putting through any orders almost straight after the meeting as all orders have to be in by midday on Friday

The other email that all D9800 Rotarians should have received was from or District Governor explaining the position of Rotary International and vaccination. it read as follows:



As the first organization to envision a polio-free world through the mass immunization of children, Rotary believes the decision to vaccinate against COVID-19 is a civic and humanitarian imperative.


• Rotary is strongly encouraging all eligible people, including its members, to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

• In areas where the coronavirus is surging, communities are facing extreme challenges, health systems are overwhelmed, and contentious rhetoric is dividing us.

• We are requesting our global membership to continue to:

o support equity in vaccine access for all people,

o combat misinformation hindering the fight against COVID-19,

o recognize the lifesaving services provided by health workers, and personally support the effort by getting vaccinated. 

• Global vaccination is the pathway to ending the coronavirus pandemic and the emergence of new variants.

• We believe it is critical for the global community to contain the coronavirus through vaccination and continued prevention measures.


How is Rotary helping to support global vaccination against COVID-19?

• Our long-term commitment to fighting disease meant that we were prepared to respond when the pandemic struck. 

• Rotary has provided over US$ 49 million in grants for projects related to COVID-19, and members have donated supplies, sourced PPE, supported hospitals and health workers, and publicly highlighted the efficacy of vaccines. 

• Globally, Rotary is actively engaged in assuring equity in vaccine access for all people.

Are you encouraging all Rotary members to be vaccinated against COVID-19? Does Rotary support vaccine mandates?

• As the first organization to envision a polio-free world through the mass immunization of children, Rotary believes the decision to vaccinate against COVID-19 is a civic and humanitarian imperative.

We strongly encourage vaccination for all individuals, including our members.

• Rotary is a non-political global network of community leaders. We are not involved in government policy-making discussions, nor are we acting in a political manner on this issue.

What is the current plan for having RI employees return to the office?

• Rotary’s World Headquarters staff at One Rotary Center in Evanston will have the option to resume in-person office operations beginning Monday, 10 January 2022.

• Rotary International has joined a growing number of employers who are requiring COVID-19 vaccinations, including boosters, as a condition of employment.

• Proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 is required for any guest of Rotary entering Rotary International’s world headquarters in Evanston. 

How can Rotary – a non-health organization – responsibly issue an endorsement of the COVID-19 vaccine and encourage people to be immunized?

• Rotary always aims to use accepted scientific data to drive impact. Vaccines have proven to be one of the greatest advances of modern medicine.

• Rotary’s efforts to eradicate polio – our flagship program since 1985, has only been successful because of vaccinations.

• In addition to polio eradication, two of our seven areas of focus - disease prevention and treatment and maternal and child health - rely upon vaccinations.  

• The World Health Organization estimates that vaccines save between 2 to 3 million children’s lives each year, and the Global Polio Eradication Initiative estimates the polio vaccine has saved 20 million children from paralysis.

• Vaccines are safe, effective and are responsible for eliminating or controlling many other vaccine-preventable diseases such as smallpox, measles, rubella, and Ebola. And now, there is the opportunity to end the COVID-19 pandemic through vaccines.

Is Rotary’s endorsement of COVID-19 vaccination a departure from your non-political stance? Are we getting too political?

• We’re following the science and data around COVID-19, which clearly indicate that unvaccinated individuals are significantly more likely to contract the virus, become ill, require hospitalization, or die compared with those that are fully vaccinated.

• Misinformation is hindering the fight against COVID-19, and we are committed to providing our members with science-based information.

• Our support for vaccination is not about politics, it’s about safety and humanity.

• For more information, please contact Rotarysupportcenter@Rotary.org.

 Will this endorsement of COVID-19 vaccinations take the focus away from Rotary’s other causes like polio eradication?

• The eradication of polio remains a goal of the highest order for Rotary. We can apply the lessons we have learned in fighting polio to the efforts in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

I thought Rotary was non-political. I am/members of my club are/my entire club is threatening to leave Rotary because of this endorsement of COVID-19 vaccinations.

• Rotary is a non-political global network of community leaders. 

• While we’re actively engaged on societal issues that impact our communities, Rotary is not involved in government policy-making discussions, nor are we acting in a political manner on this issue. 

• Rotary has long supported disease prevention and eradication through vaccinations.

• We hope you or the members of your club reconsider, but we respect your decision. Please do continue your efforts to make the world a better place through volunteer service.

If enough people are upset with this endorsement of COVID-19 vaccinations, will you change your mind?

• Our endorsement of COVID-19 vaccination was a unanimous decision made by the Rotary International Board of Directors and The Rotary Foundation Trustees. We stand firmly behind our position and expect there will be continued support from the Rotary family.

Further questions can be directed to rotarysupportcenter@rotary.org

At last week's meeting President, Sainab Sheikh advised members that the Somalian Women's Development Association is planning to run an Australia Day event at the park next to the North Melbourne Community Centre and has asked our club to assist with a BBQ. I have not heard any further details but I expect at the best we could provide the Marquees and portable BBQs that we used for the community BBQ we did in North Melbourne last December.

Thursday 20th January 2022 at 6.45 pm on Zoom - Jalal Ahmadzai

Jalal is an Administration Officer - Innovation & Marketing at AMES Australia and is going to tell what life was like in Afghanistan before and after the Taliban and what it has been like for those that have had to escape the country as refugees so that we can have a better understanding of it.


Meeting ID: 828 8560 5624        Passcode: 585402


Thursday 27th January 2022 at 7.00 pm on Zoom - Board Meeting
We have already had a few acceptances for tomorrow's meeting do I hope you can join us on Zoom.




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