November 2021
November is Rotary Foundation Month.                                                
People of Action
Presidents Message
It's the end of June as I write this message. It's pretty much the end of our Rotary year.
Traditionally it's when we change over our Presidents and recognise that a Changeover function. For us we are doing it a little bit differently and we are having Joint Presidents. Sandra de Gruchy will join me for the next twelve months. We will sort out the role between us and hopefully it will all work smoothly. It gives me the opportunity to mentor Sandra in the first few months and she will gradually take on more. of the day to day running of the Club. I will have more time for other projects particularly our Homelessness project and other District duties. Sandra retains the Youth Director role.  See story and pics below.
Also June turned out to be a big month for me as I did The Pushup Challenge for mental health. We did all the 3,139 pushups and raised over $4,000 for Lifeline. See story.
In May we had our District Assembly where Rotary Clubs get together to update their plans for the year. We followed this with our Club's Strategy Workshop where we set the resource and operational plan for our key projects.
We are confident that our Club activities, and working together with other Rotary Clubs, will lead to significant benefit to our local community. We have ambitious and challenging goals for 2022-23, including the Cookbook, Homelessness, mental health and other projects.
Please call/text me if you would like to know more about Rotary, our Club and our 2022 projects. Do you know you can be involved in some of our community projects in the Blue Mountains, working alongside some pretty interesting people. It's always rewarding to participate and have fun while you're doing it. 
Bill Pixton
June, 2022
0418 113643
So Happy to See You
Tuesday, November 2 was one of the best days in more than 20 years of this Club’s history.
After many months of “existing” in a government-imposed locked down and depending on Zoom technology for Club meetings, we have finally returned to face-to-face contact.  Our venue imposed strict COVID requirements but the Club members were able to meet them without a problem. As you can see it is a great spot for breakfast, with its unique ambience and charm.
What a difference!  The minimum functionality of zoom did allow the Club to continue without noticeable interruption; future events were discussed; speakers offered forth opinions on varying subjects; even a wedding was planned.  However, it was never the same on Zoom and  face-to-face interaction is so important in developing and maintaining relationships. We are all time deprived, and whilst there is a lot of commentary about how meetings can be a waste of time right now, how much time is actually wasted by poor communication over email and with other digital mechanisms. More often than not, a short, well structured and well-planned meeting can save an incredible amount of time. Sometimes new tech is not always better tech.
Nonetheless, thank you, Mr. Zoom, Ms. Face Time and Miss Skype for allowing us to communicate through an electronic platform.   However, just because it's becoming easier every day not have face-to-face meetings, it doesn't mean we should exclusively.
In addition to our first Face to Face Club meeting in months, Tuesday, November 2 was Melbourne Cup.
How Sweet It Is!
How symbolic was it that our first day back face to face was on Melbourne Cup Day. This year, the race will look a little different once again, with just 10,000 spectators allowed on course due to corona virus restrictions. That follows last year's race, which was run in front of empty grandstands at Flemington.
Horseracing has been an important and widespread part of Australian sporting culture since soon after European settlement of the continent. By the mid-19th century, various racing clubs had been set up and rules were being laid down to organise the industry. The Cup s is one of the world's few major handicap races. As always since the beginning of our Club, members eagerly placed their bets “on the sweep” with the winner taking home enough dollars to shout drinks for the house.
We got into the swing of things with the Best Hat of the Day. It was clear that our members spent at least several hours getting ready on the day, and even, we imagine, employing hair stylists the day before and professionally had their face made up at dawn.
I guess it’s true what they say; nothing makes a fashion statement like a killer hat! We believe that the photos here speak for themselves.
Liz Romalis                                                   Les Margulis
This year was no exception.  Little did we realize that we had so many fashionistas among us.  Voting was ever so close, but Liz took first prize among the ladies and Les, our erstwhile on-field entertainer, won among gents with his eye test “Kiss Me” hat.
Margaret Greening                                       Bryan Bartlett
Phill Isaacs                                                    Sandra de Gruchy, Ann Margulis
Well done, to all members and participating horses.
Lift The Lid
Earlier in the month, on the morning of October 12, Ian Scott joined us also via Zoom for the weekly Club meeting. Ian has been a longterm member of the Rotary Club of Central Blue Mountains'
Ian has served in the Royal Australian Air Force full time and reserve since 1968 and has held command at all levels. Along the way he managed to acquire an MBA and a Masters of Arts in Strategic Studies. He retired with the rank of Air Commodore and was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 1996 for his service to the country. Ian spoke about the Mental Health Foundation Australia ( and the training that is offered.  Ian informed us that the training was first developed by one of the Rotary Clubs in Canberra and is now offered in more than 25 countries and there are more than 500,000 graduates.
The course that Rotary offers is over two days and costs only $30 for materials and the necessary insurance.  There are a number of variants in addition to the standard course which are adopted to the specific needs of teens, seniors, individuals with Aboriginal heritage etc.
If you have an interest in taking the course and a number of Club members have in the past, we would suggest that you contact Ian directly in order to determine the schedule for the upcoming year.  He can be reached at.
Ian's visit dove-tailed well with our Lift The Lid High Tea where we raised over $1,000 for mental health research through Australian Rotary Health.
Stepping Stone Delivers for our Youth

The Club was very fortunate that in October we were able to snag a number of very interesting speakers who came to Leura via Zoom.

On Tuesday October 19 we were introduced to Max, the founder, and Jason, the CEO of an organization called Stepping Stone.  Since 1989, Stepping Stone House has provided a safe place for children and young people, aged 12-24 who are at risk or experiencing homelessness so they can begin to heal, build resilience, create connections and become the very best they can be.

Many of Australia’s young people have experienced domestic violence, sexual and emotional abuse, alcoholism and drug addiction. In addition, approximately 30% of this country’s young people have been forced to leave home because of their sexuality.

This is the reason that Stepping Stone House offers a dedicated and safe community for young people at risk by offering them a long-term shelter and a number of support programs, such as:

§  A sense of family and home away from home across the programs

§  Development through outdoor adventure education

§  Learning over 800 Life Skills

§  Creating lasting positive childhood memories

§  Graduation to either employment or tertiary education

§  Long term “after care” – they don’t stop support programs at age 18

We congratulate Max, Jason and the other Board Members and Team Leaders of Stepping Stone for reaching out to an at-risk segment of our community and making a difference. Access to their knowledge and expertise will be helpful as we roll out our own homeless project in the Blue Mountains.




Blue Mountains Rotary Clubs
It is great to see the various Rotary Clubs in the Mountains working together to address common community issues. eg supporting Mountains Youth Services Team (MYST) in their mental health programs in High Schools in the Blue Mountains.
Club Information
Welcome to our Club!
Tuesdays at 7:00 AM
Robyn Yates Centre for Cancer Wellness Support
105 Railway Parade
Leura, NSW 2780
425 302 473
Our face to face breakfast meetings are at The Robyn Yates Centre for Cancer Wellness Support. We will still have some ZOOM meetings. Check Calendar for details.
Jul 05, 2022
The Big Issue
Jul 12, 2022
His literary work
Jul 26, 2022
Equine Therapy
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102-2060 Winston Park Drive, Oakville, ON, L6H 5R7
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