Froggie's December-January Message
Happy New Year to all Rotarians, family and friends. I hope everyone had a safe and exciting Christmas with family and have managed to fit some holiday and relaxation in.
I had a wonderful 2 weeks visiting my elder daughter in New Zealand and was looking forward, like most Rotarians, to quietly easing back into Rotary activity in the first half of January.
“Tell him he’s dreaming” is a line I recall from a well-loved Australian movie!  I sure was - mother nature had some serious disruption planned for East Gippsland residents and holiday visitors with the catastrophic fires.
You can’t keep Rotarians down though – in the blink of an eye the East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid committee had been formed, initial funding had been secured, further fundraising was underway and recovery efforts being planned. More information later in ChainMail, but wow, what an effort!
This is also the time to be thinking about the future.  There are some very clever Rotarians, one in particular Evan Burrell, who is a real guru in the Public Image area. I was really taken with his “New Year Rotary Resolutions”. We could all do well to adopt these:
Issue 6    December 2019

January is Vocational Service Month. 
The concept of vocational service is to encourage and foster:
  • High ethical standards in business and professions
  • The recognition of the worthiness of all useful occupations
  • The dignifying of each Rotarian’s occupation as an opportunity to serve society
1st January
New Year's Day
19th - 25th January 
International Assembly
San Diego
19th January at 7:00pm
District Board Meeting (Zoom)
Froggie's December-January Message Continued
Further on there is a report on the very successful RYLA Conference held in December. This is one of our pre-eminent programmes especially now that it is incorporating a Certificate IV in Business. I had the pleasure of attending on the Wednesday and was hugely impressed with the calibre of the content and presentation along with the level of engagement of the participants. Special thanks to Nigel and Ann Cousins along with Simon Varvaruc and his team of very enthusiastic young leaders.
It was a privilege to attend RC Pakenham’s presentation to the students from four of the Pakenham schools with their Junior Community Awards in December. An amazing event with lots of parents, teachers. Colour was provided by Pakenham’s beautiful pink polo shirts (oops, sorry Ken, was it fuschia you said?). There’s a report later in ChainMail.
Best wishes to all as we enter the second half of our Rotary year.
East Gippsland Rotary Fire Relief
Article submitted by District Governor Adrian Froggatt

With the catastrophic fire destruction across East Gippsland, there is going to be a significant recovery effort to rebuild communities for an extended period.
The expectation is that even more destruction is to come, as adverse fire conditions are predicted in the coming days. The extremely dry drought conditions of East Gippsland mean some fires could potentially continue to burn for months. This has been a pretty grim way to begin the new 2020 year.
Rotary, however, has been quick to spring into action. On New Year’s Day District Emergency Chair PDG Janne Speirs and I attended an interest meeting in Bairnsdale convened by AG Anne Cross, to consider how best the coordinated Rotary Cluster could respond to this emergency and the future recovery. 
More than 20 interested people attended and from this a very strong committee of 5 plus Secretary and Treasurer was formed under the Chair of Pearl Findlay-James. Our new East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid committee is for the whole of East Gippsland and can be reached at
Many Rotary Clubs have contacted PDG Janne, myself, Secretary Jane, AGs and the new East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid committee keen to assist. This is wonderful and truly representative of the spirit of Rotary. Fund raising initially is the most urgent requirement then later labour from volunteers will be needed to assist with recovery efforts like fencing and clean ups. Vouchers will be used to provide material assistance with a number of traders already willing to accept vouchers from Rotary. We will be keeping away from used clothing, water, and food distribution as these areas are well covered by other agencies.
To avoid confusion, I would like to explain the 3 ways to donate.
1. Donation to District 9820 Disaster Relief Account (633000 / 137927174)
We are encouraging clubs to donate in the first instance to the District Emergency Fund to replenish the $10k District has committed to the new East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid Committee. Once donations exceed the $10k they will be passed in full to the Committee. This is the preferred donation method in these early stages.
2. Donation to East Gipplaand Rotary Fire Committee
This is an account of the Rotary Club of Bairnsdale with the funds controlled by the East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid Committee. Bank donations to Rotary Club of Bairnsdale – Projects Account 633000 / 165960451.
3. Donation to RAWC National Fire Appeal
This is the only option for those who can only donate to a recipient with DGR (Donor Gift Recipient) status, or those who want tax deductibility on their donations.  RAWCS have created a single appeal with the link to donate prominently at the top of their home page at Donors need to tag their donation to “East Gippsland” otherwise we may not receive all that we should. RAWCS do keep 2.75% of the donations for administration.
At time of writing this, clubs and individual Rotarians are already responding. This is wonderful to hear. Thank you all very much.
District Governor's Partner's Program
Article submitted by Wendy Froggatt - District Governor's Partner
Clubs are reminded that this year, the DG partner project is “Polio The Endgame”.
Clubs are to continue what they already do - plus “that little bit extra”.  What you do already towards eradicating polio is highly valued.  This Year’s Partner Project acknowledges that, but asks you to do a little bit extra for the “Endgame”. 
Now is the hardest part of our work towards eradicating polio, that “final push”. We can’t stop now even when there are other causes taking our attention.
District 9820 Conference Update
Article submitted by PDG Tim Moore - District 9820 Conference Chair   
Happy New Year to all District 9820 Rotarians!
PSSST …………… if you are very quick, you can still snare the Early Bird Registration discount!
PDG Tim Moore - Conference Chair
0418 175 895
Nominations for District Governor 2022-2023
Article submitted by PDG Janne Speirs - Chair Nominating Committee 2019-2020
Compliments of the Season to everyone in this great District 9820
I am sure that as we move in to 2020 the wonderful work will continue, and we will truly “Connect the World” by what we do.
I am writing this note as a reminder of the importance of leadership roles within our District and in particular, the role of District Governor.
As you would have already seen, applications for the role of District Governor 2022-2023 have been called for and are due to be with me by no later than January 15th, 2020.
These need to include a CV of no more than two pages, your vision for the District as Governor – no more than two pages - and also a resolution from your Club signifying the Club’s support of your application.
As already stated, all applications need to be emailed to me at to arrive no later than 15th January 2020. Interviews will be held on Saturday, February 15th 2020.
Please give very serious thought to this matter.
Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA)
Article submitted by Rob Cook - Chair District Youth Programmes
This year’s Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) was held on 9-14 December at Rawson Village. The new and improved 6-day programme was completed by 20 participants, and they all achieved a lot in their personal growth and improving their skills.
The extended time of the conference – which brought its length of time up to equivalent with every other District in Australia – allowed the participants to get much more out of RYLA than our previous 2-day camps permitted.
On the final day everyone shared their experiences which really demonstrated the benefits of the longer programme. The participants spoke about their newfound confidence and self-worth, the strong connections they had built with each other when they were strangers previously, and the new skills they had obtained. The overall feeling among the group was one of amazement and pleasure at what they had achieved, and the supportive network they had built for themselves, as they embark on their leadership journey.
Just some of the guest speakers at the RYLA conference were the motivation and self-promotion expert and former District Conference guest speaker, Lisa McInnes-Smith, the leader of RYLA Oceania and former Rotary International Convention guest speaker, Rebecca Fry, the public speaking expert, Brett Cousins, and former decathlon champion and motivational speaker, Steve Cain. The participants learnt skills such as goal setting, marketing yourself, impromptu and public speaking, leadership techniques and styles, project development, body language, values, mental health first aid and more.
There was also great Rotary representation at RYLA. The Rotary projects showcase gave the participants ideas for future projects, which included End Trachoma, Disaster Aid, Dream Cricket, and more. The participants’ surprise project, which they had to plan and implement for by themselves, was organising dinner and entertainment for the District Governor’s visit to RYLA. This Rotary presence gave the participants great exposure to Rotary’s benefits and the importance of recognising their sponsor clubs.
By participating in RYLA, each of the participants also have the opportunity to achieve a Certificate IV in Business from Swinburne University – another great innovation of this year’s programme. To complete some of the requirements of the Certificate IV, the participants will need to spend some time volunteering and guest speaking at their sponsoring Rotary clubs, giving great ongoing contact between the sponsor clubs and their participants.
Well done to everyone involved in delivering RYLA, but particularly Nigel Cousins for chairing the organising committee.
We are hoping for more involvement from each club going forward, so if you are interested in being part of the RYLA organising committee, or if you have participants that would be interested in next year’s programme, please contact:
RYLA Chair Nigel Cousins at 
or the
District Youth Programmes Chair, Robert Cook at 
Rotary Junior Community Awards
On the evening of Tuesday 3rd December, the Rotary Club of Pakenham presented its Rotary Junior Community Awards.
This District 9820 youth program gets year 6 students involved in community service and teaches them great new skills!
Congratulations to all the recipients from John Henry Primary School, Lakeside College Primary School, Pakenham Springs Primary School, and St Patricks Primary School!
Berwick Carols by Candlelight
Article submitted by Sam McCurdy - Rotary Club of Berwick
The Rotary Club of Berwick held their annual 'Carols by Candlelight' event on Saturday 21st December at the Edwin Flack Reserve.
The preceding day had provided temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius, so it was with some relief that Saturday produced an acceptable sunny 24 degrees, although occasional chilling gusts of wind were experienced.
The program included the Berwick College Vocal Ensemble, Casey Choir and Bethany Fisher, as well as solo singers Dhee and Lucinda Da Silva.
The children particularly enjoyed Bethany Fisher's performance and of course, the arrival of Santa Claus and Mrs Claus in a CFA fire truck.
An estimated crowd of around 4,000 enjoyed the evening's entertainment, which culminated in a spectacular fireworks display.
Many thanks to all those who contributed to the success of the event, including members of the Rotary Club of Berwick, Casey- Cardinia Rotaract, Inner Wheel Club of Berwick, Rotary Club of Narre Warren and our own exchange student Andrea.
'U Alright Mate'
Excerpt from ‘The Tide’ Issue 18, 17 October 2019
The Rotary Club of Frankston reported in their bulletin, “The Tide”, on a talk given by their guest speaker Cameron Oates and chaired by Roger Oates.
The Oates family has experienced great sadness in the last 12 months, following the loss of their son/brother Troy, as a result of mental health issues.
As expected, there were some elements of emotion as Cameron described the lead up to Troy’s loss. He handled it all extremely well (as did Roger). His presenting skills were exceptional, as he spoke with great passion and had the room mesmerised.
Cameron pointed out that his subject is very emotional for everyone, not only those directly impacted. He suggested the best way to deal with this was with statistics.
Data he presented included the fact that 800,000 people worldwide die each year as a result of suicide. For everyone who dies, there have been many, many attempts prior (often more than 20). So, you can see we are dealing with an epidemic.
It is admirable that the “Oates Clan” has responded to this adversity by converting the negative energy generated by tragedy into action. They are in the process of forming a foundation called, “U Alright Mate”, to assist those dealing with mental health issues and to educate everyone into identifying those at risk and then providing support.
Faluwai School 70% Complete
Article submitted by Roger Thornton - Chair District Donations in Kind (DIK) - Rotary Club of Berwick
The construction of the school at Faluwai in Timor Leste, is about 70% complete.  It is funded by the Rotary Club of Port Melbourne with the project being managed by ‘Spend it Well’ and the Balibo House Trust.
The latest reports are that it is all moving ahead really quickly and looking great. The school construction has proceeded well, the walls and ceilings have been plastered. Currently, they are working on the floor outside the school or terrace and in the toilet as well.
It may be finished this month, except for the water connection work that will be built when the Water Engineer has completed the planning.
Australian Golfing Fellowship of Rotarians (AGFR)
Article submitted by Peter Faulkner - Rotary Club of Endeavour Hills
Australian Golfing Fellowship of Rotarians is a fellowship within the Rotary organisation and is part of what Rotary is about, that is fellowship within its membership. 
Rotary has many fellowships from fishing, caravanning, motor biking, bridge to various vocations, one of the more active fellowships is the Australian Golfing Fellowship. Each year we meet in a town or city somewhere in Australia and have a golf tournament over a week. This week is rotated on a State by State basis annually.
Rotarians travel from all parts of Australia, Hobart to Cairns, Victoria to Western Australia and Darwin for the week of golf and fellowship. Generally we have around 100 Rotarian golfers with 30- 40 playing partners and 20-30 non-playing partners.