Rotary Club of South Launceston District D9830
2018 theme3
Club Meetings:
Thursday for fellowship at 6pm followed by Dinner at 6:30pm
Hotel Grand Chancellor, 29 Cameron Street, Launceston, Tasmania

Latest News | Guest Speaker


Errol Stewart - Development in Launceston

Thursday, 13 Dec 2018

Our Guest Speaker last week was Errol Stewart, who was accompanied by his wife, Aidie. Errol spoke about his developments in Launceston, starting in 1992 when he purchased Jackson Ford.
Having moved to Victoria from Launceston earlier in his career, he and Aidie decided to return to Launceston. Their first purchase was the Glen Dhu High School, which they developed into a comfortable residence. It was then that he decided to develop the old Salisbury's Foundry into the new Jackson Ford complex. This was a very difficult job, and set a trend for him in terms of not being put off by difficult projects.
It was a meeting with Jim Bacon and John Lees which started discussions on the Seaport development. Money was hard to borrow for such a project, and he had to resort to bringing in other people as partners. This approach continued throughout all his work.
He gave a summary of all his projects, including not-so-successful ones such as the George Town Ferry Terminal development. Fortunately, these failures were rare.
He talked about the sourcing of the marina for the Seaport, the Silo Hotel complex, and the C H Smith area. One thing which has been a feature of his projects is his ability to involve not only private developers, but Local and State Government. This approach was the catalyst which made them viable. The current works include the new Motor Museum opposite the Silo Hotel, and he outlined plans for the precinct. The Silo Hotel is a very sig-nificant part of the North Esk River Park, Rowing Complex and general recreation area. It will be a great tourist attraction. He is even interested in developing the old Kings Wharf, and creating yet another public asset.
It was a privilege to hear from one of the main developers of public space in Launceston, and we thank him for giving us his time, as well as congratulating him on his work.

Errol stewart

Rotarian Diana Butler, CEO of the Care for Africa Foundation

Wednesday, 28 Nov 2018

Last week’s guest speaker was our own Rotarian Diana Butler, CEO of the Care for Africa Foundation, which Diana founded in 2006 along with the late Dr Peter Hewitt.
The foundation provides various aid projects to the Tarime district, a particularly impoverished area of northern Tanzania.
Diana said Australia has one doctor per 400 people. Tanzania has an av-erage of one per 50,000 and the Tarime district has one per 125,000 people.
The work which Care for Africa does in Tanzania is aligned with the Unit-ed Nations’ and UNICEF’s Sustainable Development Goals.
On a recent visit, Diana was presented with the Order of the Uhuru Torch, a significant Tanzanian honour, in recognition of the work she and the Care for Africa team has done in the country. Diana has also received support from the Australian High Commissioner in East Africa.
Diana emphasised that all the programs Care for Africa undertakes are community driven, with strong involvement of the local people, so the work can be sustainable without reliance on ex-patriate personnel.
The foundation has recently established a Centre for the Empowerment of Women, based in a newly constructed building with sponsorship from the Rotary Club of South Launceston.
Other projects the foundation has initiated include water wells, child sponsorship, breakfast pro-grams for school children, sanitation projects, provision of sanitary products in partnership with the ‘Days for Girls’ organisation, a mobile health clinic, family planning programs, adult learning schemes and the building of schools in remote areas.
Care for Africa provides a fully integrated program of Water & Sanitation, Health, Education and Social Enterprise.


Our outgoing exchange student Lucy Rivers

Wednesday, 28 Nov 2018

Our outgoing exchange student for 2019 is Lucy Rivers, who will be going to France.
Lucy visited the club last week and gave the talk and Powerpoint presentation she has prepared to give to clubs in France.
Lucy is 15 years old and is in year 10 at St Patrick’s College. She was born in Sydney and came to Tasmania when she was three years old.
She lives in an 180 year old house in Campbelltown. During the week she stays in Launceston with her aunt, who was present with her.
At home she has four dogs and a cat. She loves early morning scenery, camping and hiking.
The rest of her presentation gave information about Tasmania, Rotary in Tasmania and in particular our club. We wish her well as she prepares to go somewhere in France next year. She is yet to be in-formed of her exact location there


David Meadows, a retired engineer

Sunday, 25 Nov 2018

Last week’s guest speaker was David Meadows, a retired engineer. He gave an interesting , but bleak account of North Korea. He became interested in North Korea after his father, a British Naval Officer had visited the country. It is called the Democratic Republic of Korea. David said that it is neither democratic nor a republic. It is a brutal dictatorship. No dissent or criticism of the regime is tolerated. Dissenters are executed and that covers three generations—their parents and children are executed as well. The country is slightly larger in area than Tasmania, but has a population of 25 million. It has limited arable land, so struggles to feed its people. Malnutrition and famine are widespread. The population is ageing, there are more people over 60 than under 30. Most North Koreans are under five feet tall, due to malnutrition. If couple have a child, the man will deny himself food so his wife and child can have more. Consequently many men die of malnutrition. Many women with babies try to flee into China by crossing frozen rivers. If successful, they are often kidnapped and married to Chinese men. Due to the one-child policy in China, there is an acute shortage of women. Some women manage to escape to South Korea via Malaysia and Thailand.
All industry is government owned. There is very little activity outside Pyongyang. David said that the country is very quiet , with little traffic and industry noise outside the capital.
The military is the main employer. Compulsory military service lasts for seven years. The country has a standing army of 700,000 and reserves of 1.2 million. The country’s main export is military hardware and its principle foreign exchange earnings come from the wages of North Koreas employed abroad, mainly as laborers on construction projects.
David was motivated to help North Korea when he discovered that babies and young children were sleeping on wet concrete floors in orphanages. They had no beds or blankets. His organisation, the Troas Trust, has provided around $45 million worth of aid to North Korea. The organization has now been shut down by the Australian government.
The present leader, Kim Jong-un, has ignored his undertaking to President Trump to cease the country’s nuclear weapons and missile program. Underground nuclear tests have been suspended due to rock fractures, that it is feared might reactivate a 1000 year-old dormant volcano. One encouraging sign is that recent military parades no longer include missiles.


Sheryl Thomas, CEO of Studentworks.

Wednesday, 31 Oct 2018

Last week’s guest speaker was Sheryl Thomas, CEO of Studentworks.
Sheryl began by thanking club members who participated in the working bee in August by painting their dining room.
She mentioned that Studentworks was celebrating its 40th anniversary and was holding an Open Day the following day—Friday October 26th, to which club members were invited.
Studentworks is a not-for-profit organisation funded by the Education Department.
Sheryl also mentioned that Dale Luck was president of their board and that Wayne Higgs had also served as a board member.
Studentworks provides an alternative education program for 14-16 year olds who struggle with the convention-al education system, by offering a more practically oriented program in the areas of woodwork, metalwork, warehousing and catering.
They aim to provide productive pathways to fulfilling lives by using a teenage workforce producing real prod-ucts being sold on the open market. Early in their existence they made products for Repco, Coats Patons, Preci-sional Tool Annexe, the Branxholm Sawmill and Cornwall Coal.
Today they make pine beds for the Migrant Resource Centre, outdoor furniture, including picnic tables and seats that have been installed in the Gorge. They produce products for QVMAG, the Prospect Medical Centre, Southern Cross Care at Low Head as well as children’s chairs and tables, feed lockers and rubbish bins.


UTAS Northern Transformation Project - Rotarian James McKee &  Chelsea Wingrove

Wednesday, 24 Oct 2018

Last week’s guest speakers were Rotarian James McKee (Central Launceston) and Chelsea Wingrove (daughter of former South Launceston Rotarian, the late Phil Wingrove).
They came to our club to talk about the UTAS Northern Transformation Project, which includes the transfer of the Launceston campus to Inveresk.
The aim of the project is to increase the volume and diversity of Tasmanians involved in learning, particularly at university level. Tasmania currently has a rate of people involved in university education equivalent to the Northern Territory.
The project wants to position UTAS to offer flexible and relevant course options and flexible entry approaches in co-operation with TAFE. The introduction of the University College is designed to meet a gap in the education market not currently being met by TAFE.
The project also aims to remove barriers to further education learning by developing vibrant shared community spaces with a distinct heart.
Current university buildings at Newnham are no longer suitable for a modern university. They have a utilisation rate of about 14%. In the past, students lived on campus and spent most of their university life there. Today students may only spend a few hours a week on campus.
The new campus at Inveresk will be designed to reflect this change and the desire for the university to be much more connected with the community around it, particularly the city centre.
The university wants its programs to stimulate economic growth, productivity and innovation in partnership with the government and the business community. It is moving from a hub and spoke model to a network ap-proach. The northern campus will be focusing on the areas of Health and Human Performance, Food Innovation, Smart Design and Wood Innovation.
In conjunction with The Tasmanian Institute of Sport, UTAS will be promoting high performance and a standard of excellence in sport, particularly in rowing and cycling.
The university will also be promoting the adding of value to agriculture, tourism and forestry. In relation to the latter, it will be facilitating smart design and wood innovation.
UTAS wants to emphasise the notion that learning doesn’t stop at graduation and wants to provide increased options for post-graduate study.
The new campus is being designed with integration with the com-munity in mind. It includes a research centre on the Willis Street site.
The new campus is aimed to demonstrate design principles, com-munity, aesthetics, distinctiveness, technology and function.
The campus will include a village green, which it is hoped will be-come a community focus.
UTAS expects to move into its new campus in 2022.


Visit to Beckett’s Museum, Exeter

Wednesday, 03 Oct 2018

Last week about 20 Rotarians, male and female, attended Dick Beckett’s private museum at Exeter.
Dick has an extensive collection of Mack trucks from early models to some significant and valuable collector-item modern Mack trucks.
Dick has also some vintage earth-moving machinery in his collection, in-cluding an Australian-built International bulldozer, manufactured in the 1940’s which contains world-leading technology and is still in working order.
Dick is a fountain of knowledge on Mack trucks and earthmoving machinery in general and provid-ed an informative and entertaining commentary on his collection throughout the evening.
His museum also contains a large collection of photographs and memorabilia items from this many trips overseas.
Past-President Les Baxter expressed appreciation to Dick for his hospitality, at the conclusion of the evening on behalf of Rotarians present.
After the museum visit, Rotarians met at the Legana Tavern for a meal.

Mack granite 02


Wednesday, 26 Sep 2018

Henk's older daughter, Maria, gave us an insight into Henk from her point of view, in honour of our much loved fellow member, who passed away earlier in the week.
Henk was a very dedicated member of the community, and got a great deal of satisfaction from helping others, especially in recent times through his mem-bership of Rotary.
He was a gentle, quiet person who lead by example and actions. He was nor-mally a man of few words, but got his life messages over very effectively.
He was a natural teacher, both in life and in his formal teaching work at the AMC, where he used his extensive expertise in Maritime Engineering to pass on knowledge to so many students.
People warmed to him, and this was not the least seen in his recent Rotary Service trip to Fiji.
Maria shared some family moments from Henk's time in Hospital following his heart attack, and ex-pressed her gratitude to be able to at least sit with him for a time before he passed.
Henk's love of helping in the community has been passed on to Maria, and she sees herself following on is footsteps in that regard.
She closed by thanking the Club for our expressions of support over the last 2 weeks.


Rotarian behind the Badge - Lara Alexander

Wednesday, 12 Sep 2018

Our second speaker was our own Secretary/President Elect Lara Alexander.
Lara continued her own life story for the information of members and then went on to speak about a recent trip to Laos
She talked about her schooling in Communist Romania, and what that was like. After school she went on to tertiary studies where she obtained a BA(Hons) in Eco-nomic studies—and a Diploma of Accounting.
She has lived in Morocco, New Zealand, Western Australia and now calls Tassie home. Her career has been in Charity organisations, Emergency Services, Hospitals and now she has taken on the job as CEO of St Vincent De Paul in Tasmania.
Lara serves on a number or Government Boards, including Consumer Health and Immune Deficiency Diseases.
She recently went on a trip to Lao PDR, or Laos as we may know it. There she was involved in Child Health work with Save the Children. Educational facilities are under resourced, but the pupils display a determination to succeed, and value achievement at school.
Villages have financial enterprise training, and can give out small start-up loans to villagers who can then turn that into successful enterprise.
While Lao PDR is a Communist country, they still have the Buddhist Faith, and many buildings strongly reflect this. It’s quite a contradiction in many ways.


National Youth Sci-ence Forum (NYSF) , Belinda Kavic.

Wednesday, 12 Sep 2018

The first speaker of the evening was our Club’s representative at the forthcoming National Youth Sci-ence Forum (NYSF) , Belinda Kavic.
Belinda is in Tear 11 at the Launceston Christian School, and was selected for the NYSF by the inter-view panel.
She told us of her aspirations, and expectations from the Forum. She regards the NYSF as a great opportu-nity to help her decide upon exactly which subject stream to chose next year and Uni, and it will also help her establish contacts, network amongst similar minded people, and meet new people.
She also enjoys the challenge of being put outside her comfort zone.

Berlinda kavic2

Impromptu talk on Flood Protection - Harry Galea

Wednesday, 05 Sep 2018

The Scheduled Guest Speaker was not able to attend, but Rotarian Harry stepped in and gave an impromptu talk on Flood Protection schemes in Northern Tasmania.
He talked about the historical location of Urban centres on flood plains so that they could be close to waterways.
This leads to the necessity for levees, such as in Launceston. Others have been constructed in Longford, and are now coming to La-trobe.
It is necessary to determine the level of risk, for example 1 in 200 year, 1 in 300 year, or whatever is appropriate/affordable. The flooding in Latrobe in 2016 was estimated to be the 1 in 300 year event. Launceston’s levees are designed for the 1 in 200 year event.
Funding for Levees is necessary to be a combined effort from Federal, State and Local Government. They fre-quently have to be built on poor ground because of their location next to rivers.
Some of the large floods are caused by particular weather events, like those in the North and South Esks, which emanate in large part from the substantial East Coast troughs which occur in Tasmania.
The Latrobe Levee will only protect the township, due to cost constraints.
Thanks Harry!

Harry g2

Operation Christmas Child - Beth Garwood

Wednesday, 29 Aug 2018

Beth Garwood represents Samaritans Purse, a not for profit organisation which helps all sorts of groups in many ways. Tonight she talked about especially the Shoebox scheme, Operation Christmas Child.
The Samaritans started in 1990, sending 200 boxes to Ro-mania, expanding to 327,000 globally in 2017.
These boxes are the ones our Club has participated in over the last few years.
Contents able to be put in are clothes, toys, school items, hygiene items, and special gifts.
Other Samaritans projects include Providing drinking wa-ter, personal hygiene education, Education, health and nutrition, and Disaster Aid in Australia. Beth related sev-eral stories of the joy given to the kids who have received shoeboxes, and what a huge difference a small gift can make to their lives.
The boxes go to children in need, and the current focus is on Cambodia. All help which individual Ro-tarians can give is greatly appreciated. There are currently no major sponsors, instead relying on peo-ple such as ourselves.

Beth garwood

St Vincent de Paul Society - Maryanne Singline

Friday, 17 Aug 2018

Maryanne Singline who is the Fundraising and Communications Manager at St Vincent de Paul Society (Tasmania) spoke to us last night on the many areas of assistance offered to the community.

Maryanne has been an employee of Vinnies in Tasmania for twenty one years and it is obvious that Maryanne enjoys working in this sector and co-ordinating fundraising and community events.

She told us that the St Vincent de Paul Society in Tasmania has more than 1,400 members and volunteers, who assist people in need.

She told us many stories of need in Tasmania, many of which were heartfelt.

She touched on a few of the many services that she has been involved such as Homelessness Accommodation, CEO Sleepout,  Food Vans, and Vinnies Shops (35 shops in Tasmania).

We thank you Maryanne for your speech and the dedication shown and wish you and Vinnies all the best.


Dr John Whettenhall - Tackling Malaria

Tuesday, 14 Aug 2018

Dr John Whettenhall spoke to the club last week about his attendance at the 1st Malaria World Congress held in Melbourne from 1st –5th July this year.
The congress featured 200 speakers including Foreign Minister Julie Bishop. The congress was sponsored by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and research institutes such as the Burnett Institute and the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute.
500 delegates attended from 50 countries. 200 posters featuring re-search projects were displayed.
Attendees at the congress were not just medical personnel. The problem of malaria, as well as be-ing a medical one, is also a social and economic one.
In 1900 few countries in the world did not have malaria present. In 2018 many countries now have not had malaria present for the last five years.
However, the disease is still a major world problem. For example, Papua New Guinea had 478,000 cases in 2016 resulting in 306 deaths.
Tackling malaria requires a multi-pronged approach.

Dr john

Mary Gill talking about Recycling

Monday, 06 Aug 2018

Mary Gill from Launceston Recycling spoke to our members last Thursday evening.

She explained that contamination in the bins, such as food, nappies, lawn clippings and plastic bags hamper the recycling process and cause hazards for the sorting staff at the Materials Recovery Facility.

To help with letting households learn what can and cannot be recycled,  recycling auditors have been getting elbow deep in rubbish to help out.

The assessment process is as follows:

Each kerbside recycling bin is been checked three times and stickers for a pass, improvement required or fail sticker has been left on each bin after each inspection.

She said that people do have concerns that recycling actually goes to landfill, but she said that it doesn’t here in Tasmania. The recycling here does get sorted and is sold off.

There were plenty of questions about what is recyclable and what is not, so a lot of Rotarians went from the meeting better informed. Thank you Mary.


History of Dentistry - PP Craig Mitchell

Thursday, 02 Aug 2018

Club member Craig Mitchell gave a very interesting and entertaining account of the history of dentistry over the centuries last Thursday evening.

In his usual humorist way he took us on a journey that had the room in laughter and some of the primitive methods over the centuries were enough to make the next visit to the dentist a trip to remember.

Craig said that these days’ dental mechanics are mainly making mouthguards for young sportspeople, who present with a full mouth of teeth and no fillings.

We thank you Craig for a most entertaining talk, and you could tell by the questions that all members appreciated your humour.  


Rotary Youth Leadership Award - Courtney Greisbach

Wednesday, 25 Jul 2018

Our speaker last week was Courtney Greisbach, the editor of ‘The Examiner.”
Courtney spoke about ‘the two minutes that changed my life’.
She explained that the life-changing experience came about through her attendance at RYLA—the Rotary Youth Leadership Award programme.
Courtney was at the time working as a journalist at ‘The Advocate’ in Burnie.
A friend gave her the information about RYLA and she shared it with her boss, with the thought that that the paper might run a story about the event.
Her boss returned two minutes later and said, “You are given a week’s paid leave and you will be attending!
Courtney confessed that she really didn’t want to go, but she was glad she did, as it proved to be a life-changing experience and set her on a career path that she might not otherwise have dared to follow.
Courtney said her uppermost thought at the time was to leave Tasmania and pursue opportunities elsewhere.

Ryla speaker

Our District Governor Ross Carlyle and wife Penny visit

Monday, 16 Jul 2018

Our District Governor Ross Carlyle and wife Penny visited our Club last Thursday evening.

As well as talking about the Rotary Theme ‘Be The Inspiration’ he spoke about his three challenges for every Rotarian those being 1.The Generation Challenge, 2.The Culture Challenge and 3.The Inspiration Challenge.

Penny Carlyle also gave us a challenge concerning items of food and explained that there are many people who need food and during a recent visit to Hobart City Mission it showed that the pantry was nearly bare.

The Hobart City Mission (HCM) has been serving the people of Southern Tasmania for over 165 years. Launceston City Mission has been operating for over 160 years and now supports all local communities in Northern Tasmania.

Items need to be in date and non-perishable. Suitable items would be muesli bars, pasta, food items in ring pull cans such as baked beans, canned meat and fish products, sauces including pour-on pasta sauce, flour, sugar, powdered egg mix, baby formula, long life milk, evaporated milk, powdered milk, oatmeal, noodles  and more.  Basically, anything that is ready to eat and preferably doesn’t require a can opener.  Pet food is also welcome.

Any donations would be much appreciated.

Dg ross carlyle 2

Rotarian behind the Badge - Judith King

Wednesday, 11 Jul 2018

Last week’s meeting features Judith King in a Rotarian Behind the Badge’ segment.

Judith was born in Bethlehem Hospital, Caulfield Victoria, which obviously immediately sparked in her a love of hospitals, spending much of her subsequent life in such places!

She said she can trace her family tree on her mother’s side back to 1024AD. One of her ancestors was a First Fleeter and became one of the founders of the Bank of New South Wales and a pioneer in the development of the Australian merino wool industry. Her family soon moved to the Northern Territory, where her father became and Air Traffic Controller at Daly Waters. Judith grew up with many aboriginal friends, being the only white child in her school. She became friends with several members of the Namatjira family. One notable achievement during her childhood was being instrumental in starting a bushfire with significant consequences.

5july 1

Guided Fly Fishing - Simone Hackett

Wednesday, 13 Jun 2018

We were indeed entertained last Thursday evening, especially if you were a keen trout fisherman, by Simone Hackett who is a fly fishing guide in one of the most picturesque areas of Tasmanian high countries.

This is where the water starts from springs in the mountains and runs down the rivers over granite sandy bottoms and gives great clear water trout fishing, this is mostly sight fishing and leads to exciting catches.

People from all over the world come to try their luck at our cunning trout and will stay in Tassy for long periods to take in this beautiful scenery.

Simone showed us a video which even if you were not into the fishing side of the sport, should not have been missed for the scenery of the lake country.

Thank you for your talk and I feel that the questions fielded by most Rotarians were an indication of how important this sport is to Tasmanian Tourism.  

Fly fishing 2

Rotary Club of South Launceston District D9830
Order Sheep manure Launceston Tasmania