Prom Coast Post - 14th December 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 14th December 2009

Prom Coast Post - 7th December 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 7th December 2009

Prom Coast Post - 30th November 2009

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Prom Coast Post - 23rd November 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 23rd November 2009

Prom Coast Post - 16th November 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 16th November 2009

Prom Coast Post - 9th November 2009

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Prom Coast Post - 26th October 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 26th October 2009

Prom Coast Post - 19th October 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 19th October 2009

Prom Coast Post - 12th October 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 12th October 2009

Prom Coast Post - 5th October 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 5th October 2009

Prom Coast Post - 28th September 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 28th September 2009

Prom Coast Post - 21st September 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for the 21st September 2009

Prom Coast Post - 14th September 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 14th September 2009

Prom Coast Post - 7th September 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 7th September 2009

Prom Coast Post - 30th August 2009

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Black and Silver Dinner Dance

Annual Gala Dance and Auction

24th of October 2009
Commencing at 6:30 pm

Traralgon Vineyard
Burnets Road, Traralgon

$85 per person
(including GST)
3 courses with drinks at the Bar Prices
Attire for the evening is "semiformal"

RSVP by 30th September 2009

Prom Coast Post - 24th August 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 24th of August 2009

Prom Coast Post - 17th August 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 17th August 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 10th Aug 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 10th Aug 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 3rd Aug 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 3rd Aug 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 27th July 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 27th July 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 20th July 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 20th July 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 13th July 2009

Click link to read the Prom Coast Post for 13th July 2009.

Prom Coast Post - 6th July 2009

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Prom Coast Post - 23rd June 2009

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District Governor to visit

District Governor Brian Norris and his wife Kerrie will be paying us a visit on 17 August 2009

Best behaviour!!

Handover Dinner - 29th June

Foster Football Club
6.30pm for 7.00pm.
Guest Speaker: Cate Johnson from Anglicare will be speaking on -
Foster Care in Gippsland

Apologies to Susan Lamb

President's Report

Dear Rotarians,

Welcome back to our intrepid PNG explorers. By all accounts the trip was very enjoyable and the fines box will be overflowing for the next few months, to judge from some of the stories I have heard! Plans are afoot for return journey.

Your Board has spent a good deal of Club money over the past month. The main recipients have been: Shelterbox, Polioplus, Interplast, the Gippsland Bushfire Appeal and action is in hand to donate the profits from the Train of $2500 to the SG Hospital, to benefit the children. I hope members approve and if there are other proposals members would like the Board to consider please let know.

The last few days have been busy ones for Foster Rotary, with Meals on Wheels, tinny rattling for the Salavation Army and a working party clearing trees at the Museum in preparation for the old gaol. It is great to have so much support but its always the same people who do the volunteering. Come on, both old and new members, put your hands up when help is needed. We actually do have fun doing the tasks.

Don't forget the meeting on 1 June at the Football Club, with partners and the handover dinner, again at the footy club, on 29 June.

Best wishes to Jack Howe for a speedy recovery. I am told he is back in Foster after a stay in Traralgon Hospital.

Yours in Rotary,
John Rice

Leave of absence: N Nicoll, R Lomax, B Richards – Mid June – September. D Bligh has leave from 14th May to 29th June.
Request that those who have leave of absence should fill in the apologies book at the motel for the weeks they will be absent.

President’s Report

Dear Fellow Rotarians,

It has been a very busy and productive month. And our thanks go to all those dedicated Rotarians who have given up their time and energies to help those in need.

The aftermath of the fires is still with us and the tool collection was a most successful initiative. Special thanks go to Rod Cooper and Barry Richards for organising the collection and delivery. The people of Foster were so generous. One amusing incident was the donation of a rare Peterson hoe, which Barry sold to a collector, at antique shop prices, a few minutes later . The profit/funds were used to buy wooden handles for other donated tools. A good demonstation of the multiplier effect, or better described as "canny". Mention should also be made of the sterling efforts of the fence posters.

As many of you are aware we have "ring fenced" in our accounts a minimum of $2000 to be spent on bushfire relief. The Board, with Club concensus, agreed that it should go to an identifiable project and not swallowed up in a general donation. If members have such a project please let us know. One project ( not needing funding ) which was suggested to me by a Probus member, was the cultivation of plants, bushes, trees etc for replanting in devastated gardens. Most of us have a few pots in the shed and can take suitable cuttings for cultivation. Let us discuss at the next meeting.

What a great GSE team from Canada we had. They told me that they had a wonderful time in the area. Although it rained for some of the time they could even see the grass grow. We had memorable trip to Snake Island, and David Bligh didn't get his trousers wet when wading to shore from the boat. He debagged! And Bill Fuller went well prepared with his fishing waders. Many thanks to Cheryl for putting so much thought into devising and arranging such an interesting and enjoyable programme for the visitors. Thanks also to the hosts, the Iser family for lending their house in Sandy Point for the team's rest day, and everyone for the behind the scenes catering and chauffering duties.

A few of us are off to the District conference at the weekend. I will report in due course.

Lastly, welcome to our new member, David Brook and his wife Ruth.

Yours in Rotary,

John Rice

Foster Rotarians join Bushfire Relief

R.C. of Foster has been in the "frontline" with assistance to the victims of the bushfires in the Traralgon South area. Club members and partners started work on fencing/support to a 78yr old in Baloook on the 1st March, with perimeter fencing being replaced and the a follow up visit on the 5th March to complete the work.

On the 10th March, volunteers once again returned to the area and assisted with clean up along the perimeter of one property and preparation for more work on the 18th March at a property in Calignee South Road, Balook. The arrangement to date has been to focus on boundary fences, with internal fences to be attended to at a later date under a different agreement.

There have been a number of ideas put forward as to how Rotary can assist the victims. One of these is that Rotary clubs "adopt" a family or road and help one group at a time. This will depend on the number of Rotarians prepared to assist and the specific nature of help that can be provided.

The VFF has been proactive in appointing a coordinator to assist with the fencing work for the Traralgon South area (Ben Thexton) and volunteers from the Tasmanian Timber Industry will be arriving later this week together with equipment, to help speed up the repair of farm fencing.

A major site clean up is being planned in a few weeks time and this should provide opportunities for other Rotarians to assist. Special acknowledgement must be made to the commitment of Rotarians in the work since the 1st March: Dick Edwards, Don Nicoll, Nev Williams, Ian Griffiths, David Brook, Liz Hall and partners, Ruth Brook and Murray Dale.

Rotary Report - From Katelyn Ardley in Brazil

The Journey

The plane trip was looooong, but I really enjoyed it and made a few good friends. The longest flight was around 14 hours from New Zealand to Argentina, I didn't sleep a wink. Landing in Sao Paulo was so exciting, we were finally in Brazil! Some of the students would be living in Sao Paulo and so we had a fantastic welcoming party and many, many photos.

The remainder of us travelled through the city lights of Sao Paulo. we all oooh´ and 'aaaah'ed at the appropriate intervals as our rotary guide pointed to the amazing examples of wealth in the large city but we were really taken aback when possibly the most Australian of us all turned and said bluntly ´´shit. the favellas´

We all turned and there was my cultural experience right there in front of my eyes. It was where the poor in the city lived, it basically looked like somebody had dropped large crates and boxes in a pile and people started living there. There are no gaps, every space is filled, some houses don't have windows, a house with a window is just a wooden box with a hole in the wall. The most immense contrast between rich and poor I'd ever seen in one city, even on one street, some favellas were just placed where they could fit, like between high rise flats and 5 star hotels.

Finally we arrived at the homes of the Rotarians. Here we would spend the night, they lived with high security, like a little town inside a town. At the gate we were told it was like living inside a prison but after entering I think prison was the last thing on anybody's mind. It was a series of mansions with beautiful gardens, swimming pools and clean streets. We were dropped off in groups at the homes in which we would sleep before our final flights in the morning. Each group was dropped off at their identical mansion each with smiling, waving family out the front and swimming pool out the back. When we arrived we found showers and bed and slept.

Five in the morning and off to the airport,.... our final flight, We almost missed it because the boarding gate suddenly changed and none of us spoke Portuguese but luckily an old man helped us out and it was okay. It was a beautiful flight and I finally got my window seat. When we arrived in Joinville my family was right at front with flags and signs, we introduced ourselves, I spoke some bad Portuguese and English and finally drove to my new home.

The Family

There's my mother, Maria, she is adorable and does so much for me. My father, Wanderlei who is also lovely and is always telling jokes (probably about me, I don't understand) and laughs heaps. My eldest sister, Dani, twenty-six years old - speaks very little English and loves to bake and my other sister Manu who now lives and studies in a different city, she speaks better English and we have fun some weekends.) and of course, hello, who is super dooper radical and currently based in Korumburra, Gippsland, Victoria. District 9820.


School is soooooo boring, I have to wake up at 6:30 and get ready and walk to school to be there at 7:30. I sit in the same class room all day, every day and study Portuguese, read, write and try to get some sleep. The teachers are so strict and the desks so uncomfortable that even sleep becomes a challenge. i have some `friends` but really they are just nice to me. it's.. okay. DIFFERENT.


I haven't done anything super cultural yet. carnival was good, i went to Picarras with my family to our beach house and I went to Bali Hai (a high cred summer club) with Bonnie, a couple of her exchange friends, my host ´cousins´ Keisy and Ana and my sister Manu, it was lots of fun. I have sent photos, at about 4 in the morning the entire club was filled with foamy soap suds, it was fantastic, I almost drowned.

I spent the next few days and nights with my cousins (and favourite people in Brazil) in Picarras where we went to the beach, rode on a banana boat took an ´on beach dance class´ and went to many street parties with alot of cross dressers. I have also been to a pub with some school friends in Rio Negrinho, Cafe no Bule, the only place to go, open only on Fridays, it was very nice.

Also to Bonnie's in Jaragua and to London pub to see very good dj ´dj puff´ and most recently, this weekend I went to a pub called ´Bier´ with Keisy and Ana where we saw some reggae and listened to a D.J. I love the weekends.
I am NOT learning Portuguese so swiftly, it is soooooooo difficult. Oh well, I'll get it, that's enough for now.

My laptop has photos and it is currently lacking internet but I have sent this to Anne and I will send to you Gus when I get the internet back.

Thanks a heap District 9820,



Excerpt From Des Hansen’s letter

Fairly close to Australia as the crow flies but light years away in terms of real development, Tapini….only 1/2 hour flying time from Port Moresby but is located in a remote mountainous area and is one of the poorest parts of all PNG.

To put it mildly, life is interesting. It's the Goilala District a tribe with a long reputation for its fighting, cheating and violence. You'd never really know as they are very happy-go-lucky, friendly people but beneath this they steal anything given the opportunity and lie without blinking an eyelid.

No birds in the area anything that moves is killed and eaten. They are lazy and love their sleep inherent in their culture. They are subsistence farmers and their plots of land dominate their lives. Kau kau (a sweet potato) is their staple food. They live for the present…"eat drink and be merry for tomorrow we die ".

The longer you stay here the more you realize not to be surprised by anything. One student who started the year in grade 10 is now in jail for murder; another year 8 boy being held as a murder suspect. My best year 9 English student was expelled for raping a primary school girl...I could go on! Despite all that I feel safe...just a matter of getting my head around how they function/think/live.

Everyone is unanimous that the country is going backwards...corruption is rife at all levels particularly at high government levels. Port Moresby is a dirty place, full of criminals and a mecca for the unemployed. Having said this there are some pluses. Their friendly nature is magnificent; the way they care for wantoks (family and friends) is amazing; rarely do you hear a cross word amongst the students….terribly patient and tolerant.

Their care for family members has to be seen to be believed. Only about 40% of the young people receive any education at all. Those that do, see themselves as "made", which is rather sad because they really have little idea about education and study. Educating them is a real challenge. About 10 students each year go on to further education at year 11 and 12 at neighbouring secondary schools .

Sacred Heart High at Tapini caters for grades 7-10 and has 170 boarders and 50 day students. Tapini is the centre of the marijuana growing in PNG and is illegally cultivated as a cash crop. The students depend on it to pay their school they hoof off to Port Moresby, sell it and they have their school fees for the year.

Communication is a challenge have to find a courier to take a letter to Pt Moresby for postage, we have regular blackouts and no phone lies since July so no phones or emails. What has happened in the cricket???? One has to have patience, understanding and a sense of humour. No one gets married here...a young girl and guy just go off into the bush, have sex and so they become a couple…..married….so easy. No one dies….they are always 'killed' by someone. The 'Someone' responsible for the death is usually the one who doesn't grieve enough at the burial. Sorcery is believed in and widely practiced.

I'd like to thank the Rotary club for their donation to PALMS in 2008. When you take on a venture like this any form of assistance is welcomed. The year here in Tapini has been very topsy-turvy with conflict between the Head Master and the board of governor's Chairman which has been extremely disruptive for the school. 2009 looks much better. It is comforting to have some contact with Australia and any funding provided, I can assure you, is well spent.

In appreciation,
Des Hansen

President’s Report

Dear Rotarians,

It has been a sad but productive month. The fires have dominated our lives for the past couple of weeks. They have affected all of us. But I am so proud to be a member of Rotary in Australia. We have helped.; not only do we have firefighters amongst us but the many Rotarians who have turned up at Yanakie to serve breakfasts and dinners to those CFA volunteers, not only locally but from as far away as Narre Warren and Berwick. 

It would be difficult to name all Rotarians who helped but outstanding is Adrian Fyfe and Rose. Adrian organised us and has been elected to be the "cluster group" fire aid co-ordinator. Some anecdotes might amuse: The egg-xtrodinary efforts by Liz and Murray to perfect the fried egg ( page 17 of the Red Cross handbook), and the "yolks" we had with the CFA about the greenies.

The most poignant was the waving "bye" to the firefighters as they left for the Front. Emotions of those in 1915?

 A statistic; of the 21 people who turned up to volunteer for the Red Cross emergency service 10 were Rotarians. 

We had a very enjoyable evening at the Foster Museum with the Yarram Rotary Club and the Rotary caravanners. Many thanks to Barrie as MC and his team of helpers, notably Adrian, Les, Geoff, Liz, Margaret, raffle sponsors and of course the partners who provided delicious salads and desserts.

The next few weeks will be busy. We have the Foster Show (gate duty) GSE visit, the Seachange festival, joint visit to Yarram RC at the Port Albert Museum (15 April ? with fish and chips) and Craft Markets on March 8 and 12 April.. Hope to see you there.

Yours in Rotary,
John Rice