From the District Governor

Happy New Year!!  Let’s hope we can continue our lives with some form of normality.
I have now completed 39 DG visits out of 47 clubs comprising 28 by zoom and 11 in-person meetings.  That leaves 8 clubs to complete in the new year.  I was also able to participate in five special Christmas meetings with clubs.  If there are other special events such as anniversaries, art shows, or other fundraisers that you would like Judy and me to attend, please let us know.
I managed to graduate from the Rotary Leadership Institute held in Drouin along with 15 others from seven clubs.  David Hanlon and Tim Wills did a great job and kept us all interested in learning more about Rotary.
Registrations have closed for the RYLA training week at Rawson during 17-22 January 2022.  If you are interested in learning more about RYLA, you are welcome to attend the open day on Wednesday and watch the young people participating in their activities.
There are a number of BBQ’s and other celebrations which some clubs are organising on Australia Day, including a Victorian Multi-District virtual event similar to last year.  Watch out for more information on this in the coming weeks.
Registrations for the District Conference to be held in Traralgon on the weekend of 25-27 February 2022 opened in September.  At last count we had 106 delegates registered for this exciting event.  The beautiful new venue is due to be completed by Christmas, with seats and carpets now installed.
A few things to remember:
  1. Accommodation needs to be booked as soon as possible, especially if you intend to stay on the Thursday night.
  2. It is a requirement of Latrobe City that all attendees be double vaccinated.
  3. Don’t forget to book your golf tournament, or winery tour spot when you register.
Rotary International Position Statement: COVID-19
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:
  • support equity in vaccine access for all people,
  • combat misinformation hindering the fight against COVID-19,
  • 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
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

District 9820 Conference 25 - 27th February 2022

District Conference Platinum Sponsor – Latrobe Health Services
Latrobe Health Services is an Australian-owned not-for-profit community-focused private health insurer with more than 81,000 members across Australia.
Founded in 1950, Latrobe Health was established by power industry workers to provide for the health care needs of residents in the Latrobe Valley, Victoria, and at the time focused on providing medical services such as hospitals and ambulances. Much has changed since 1950, with Latrobe Health now providing hospital and extras coverage for members Australia-wide. However, the spirit of Latrobe Health Services founders remains. Latrobe Health Services is still a regionally focused and based private health insurer that exists to benefit and support its members and the communities in which they live.
Latrobe Health Services is a proud supporter of regional communities, most recently donating $25k for the Traralgon storm emergency and $25k for the 2020 bushfires to Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund. In support of its community throughout the COVID pandemic, Latrobe Health Services donated a whopping $1M to bolster much needed family violence, youth and mental health supports throughout Gippsland and regional Victoria.
In 1991 Latrobe Health Services established Maryvale Private Hospital, Gippsland’s only private acute medical and surgical hospital. Since its inception, Maryvale has cared for more than 44,000 patients in the Gippsland region. Today, it’s a key health hub contributing to education and clinical programs such as diabetic care, cancer services, palliative care, breast care and men’s health.
We have some excellent speakers: 

Luke Richmond – adventurer & motivational speaker
Luke is a professional adventurer and author who lives in Tasmania, Australia. He has climbed the highest mountain on six continents, survived minus 60degree temperatures in Antarctica, been held captive in the jungles of West Papua, and paddled Australia’s longest river. He has witnessed death before his eyes on the highest peaks and healed his mind with a 55day ocean row across the Atlantic, setting a new world record. Luke, with his wife Elise, dragged carts containing all of their food and water across 1800kilometres of the Gobi Desert in Mongolia. Luke has found comfort in suffering while on adventures and his hard-earned lessons are shared in his two bestselling books. ‘We only have one life, and one chance, so get out there and make the most of it.’ – Luke

Erin Coldham – Speaker for Star of the South Project
Erin Coldham is the Chief Development Officer at the Star of the South project, which seeks to harness Bass Strait winds to power more than a million homes with clean energy, while creating thousands of jobs.
Erin is proud to be part of the team progressing this critical infrastructure project for Australia, bringing her extensive experience working with all levels of government on major, multi-billion-dollar infrastructure projects.
In her role at Star of the South, Erin is currently responsible for all development activities required to bring the project to construction and operation, working with industry, regulators, policy-makers and local communities to bring offshore wind to regional Gippsland and the State of Victoria.
Included in A Word About Wind’s Top 100 Women’s Power List 2021, Erin is a champion for female talent in the energy industry and is driven by the positive opportunities offshore wind represents for Australia.  
From Rags to Riches
Drouin Rotary Club and Warragul Rotary Club joined with Drouin Lions Club to assist with the removal of badges from discarded Ambulance Victoria uniforms.  This allowed them to be recyled and distributed to Syrian refugees, indigenous people in the Northern Territory and people in Sri Lanka and the Philippines. To read the original article click here
Club Visioning Facilitation 
Vision Facilitation helps a Rotary club design its own vision and to set out the steps necessary to achieve that vision. 
For more information click here:  Club Visioning | District 9820 ( or contact: 
Brian Norris, on 0418 633 446 or 
Aled Roberts on 0409 136 005 or 

Mornington Art Show 21 - 26 January 2022 

RYLA January 2022
RYLA Leadership Conference District 9820 is on 17th to 22nd January 2022.
This six day conference will be held in Rawson, north of Moe. To read more, click here:

Midsumma Festival 23rd January 2022

For the past four years Rotary Clubs in Districts 9790, 9800 and 9810 have promoted Rotary at Melbourne’s annual Midsumma Carnival and marched in the Midsumma Pride March. With Rotary’s recently refreshed and increased commitment to Diversity and Inclusion, and in my capacity as President of the LGBT+ Rotary Fellowship, I extend an invitation and offer of support to continue our presence at these events.
Midsumma is Melbourne’s queer arts and cultural festival, bringing together a diverse mix of LGBT+ events, artists, performers, communities and audiences. Midsumma Festival, runs over 22 days in Melbourne's summer (January/February) each year with a range of queer events that include the Midsumma Carnival and Pride March. Rotary’s presence at Carnival gives Rotary a chance to market membership to LGBT+ people and allies by showcasing our events and providing membership information. Marching in Pride, and indeed attendance at the carnival, shows Melbourne that Rotary is a welcoming, diverse and inclusive place, shows our commitment to DEI and indicates to LGBT+ people and allies that Rotary membership is open to them.
Alexandra Gardens, 23 January 2022
We will need a roster of Rotarians to staff a stall at the carnival, addressing membership queries and providing information about Rotary.
There is a $641 fee for the stall which split across the 5 districts comes to $128.20 each.
Fitzroy Street St Kilda, 6 February 2022
We will welcome any Rotarians who wish to march the opportunity to register and march with us. The two most common reasons that Rotary participates in Pride Marches across the world are to empower their LGBT+ members to show Pride and feel safe within their clubs, and to demonstrate to the general public that Rotary is queer-friendly.
Rotary International Convention Melbourne 2023
For an update on the planning for the 2023 Melbourne Convention and hear about opportunities for Clubs and Rotarians to be involved in Host Hospitality Events and volunteering for the Convention see the video on the District website using this link.  

What's happening in January

Editors Note

Request for inclusion in the newsletter can be made using  

Janet Pugh 
0410 328 636