Christmas Hampers to Share the Spirit of the Season

The Community Committee is collecting Christmas Goodies to create hampers for families in need of a friendly helping hand this Christmas. We want to help families get to enjoy the festive season.

We are collecting good between now and Friday 9th of December. If you are able to help out please do. All goods donated will be utilised in the hampers will be utilised and then passed onto Werribee Support and Housing to distribute.

See flyer below for more details.


If you have any questions or would like more information, please leave a message below and we will answer it as soon as possible. Alternatively, you can email our club at

Rotary Foundation Centennial Dinner for Hobsons Bay and Chirnside Clusters

Hoppers Crossing is part of the Chirnside Cluster and we had several members and partners attend a special dinner to celebrate 100 years of Rotary Foundation.


President Des, PDG Julie, and AG Colin

Eight District 9800 Rotary Clubs joined together last night to celebrate the Rotary Foundation’s Centennial. PDG Julie Mason skilfully interviewed a panel of Rotary Foundation Alumni who gave wonderful insights into how their lives had been enhanced by Rotary. Rotarians, partners & friends from the Altona, Altona City, Hoppers Crossing, Laverton, Werribee, Williamstown, Wyndham & Yarraville Clubs enjoyed the dinner event.


Rotary Foundation Alumni Speakers Panel

The mission of The Rotary Foundation is to enable Rotarians to advance world understanding, goodwill, and peace through the improvement of health, the support of education, and the alleviation of poverty.

The Rotary Foundation helps fund our humanitarian activities, from local service projects to global initiatives. Your club or district can apply for grants from the Foundation to invest in projects and provide scholarships. The Foundation also leads the charge on worldwide Rotary campaigns such as eradicating polio and promoting peace. Rotarians and friends of Rotary support the Foundation’s work through voluntary contributions.

For more information about Rotary Foundation visit

Some snapshots from the night….



Norm (Friend of Rotary) and Frances


Member partners attending the dinner: June (Col’s partner) and Irene (Des’s partner)



L-R: Louise, Doug, Shaz and Trevor










L-R: Walter, Bob, Khurram and Norm


Maria (Friend of Rotary) and Mary

New Club Attire Unveiled

On Wednesday 2nd November, President Des brought along a set of th new Club Attired for members to peruse before purchasing their own.

Here are some photos of the gear and also a listing of information and pricing.

Order can be made through Totally WorkWear on Old Geelong Road, Hoppers Crossing.

Remember a 50% deposit is required upon order and please ensure you try the garments on for correct sizing as once they are customised with our logo, etc. there is no refund or exchange.

To have your name embroidered on the garments it is an extra $3.50.

To have the Rotary At Work printed on the back of your garment it is an extra $9.00.



Polo top with name embroidered on top


Rotary at Work screen printed on back of jacket

INFORMATION ON CLUB ATTIRE – Click on link below

Information and Pricing on Club Apparel

Chirnside Cluster Showcase Rotary at Pacific Werribee

Article by President Des

Our Club participated in the first of the Public Awareness Campaigns at Pacific Werribee on the 4th and 5th November, when all four cluster clubs set up rotating displays outside Big W.

This is the first collaborative showcase between cluster clubs Werribee, Wyndham, Hoppers Crossing and Laverton Point Cook and there are further workshops in the planning stages as we attempt to inform the public of the great work done by Rotary International and in particular our local clubs.rotary-showcase-photo

We have been challenged by Rotary to get out into the community and show the public the good work we do and our displays certainly achieved that aim.

However I think we may need to work with our District in gaining access to brochures/handouts of the many Humanitarian projects we support such as End Polio now, Interplast, Shine On Awards and many, many others, so that we can also showcase these Rotary endorsed activities. The lack of availability of printed information defeats the purpose somewhat.

Thank you to Louise and Alan who worked together to provide a wonderful display for our club and also to Tim, who stole a few hours away from his uni studies, and Colin, who arrived after school hours with a number if Interact members and their Baden Powell College Interact Club banner and they showed us up “big time” in communicating with the Public.

We are so blessed to have this junior service club in our organisation and they are now displaying great community spirit.

The location unfortunately was not great due to the renovations presently occurring at the Plaza but it was still a very worthwhile exercise. We now look forward to a totally different environment when we go on show at Tarneit Learning and Education Centre in the foyer outside the new Julia Gillard Library on 8/9/10 December. They will be having their Open Day with an expected 500 visitors on 10th so that should be a big day for us.


DG Neville John Visits Our Club

President Des welcomed DG Neville John and his wife (and fellow Rotarian) Rebecca to our Club. Neville took the opportunity to address the members and guests to share his thoughts on Rotary.


DG Neville John shares his thoughts about Rotary with our club.

Neville spoke firstly about the 2016-17 Rotary Theme – ‘Rotary Serving Humanity’ – and how RI President John Germ derived this theme from the words of Paul Harris, “serving humanity is the greatest thing we can do”.

Neville went on to describe the three pillars of the District Strategic Plan that are driving what we do:

  • Support and strengthen clubs
  • Focus and increase humanitarian service
  • Enhance public image and awareness

Last Rotary year 198 new members joined District-wide that created a net gain of 28 members at the end of the year. Neville congratulated the Club on inducting 4 new members within the timeframe set to receive a grant for $1,000 for a project of the new members’ choice.

A big emphasis is being placed on promoting what we do as Rotary’s efforts in this regard are often poor. To this end a Rotary Showcase will go on the road in the new year. The showcase expo can be seen on Australia Day near Bendigo and on February 25 in the Atrium at Federation Square in Melbourne. Thirty programs will be featured. Neville is aware that it’s often hard to get articles into the local press. Tony Thomas, a former journalist and a Rotarian in Neville’s club, has been engaged to write stories for clubs District-wide. Our AG Nicole as his details.

Neville encouraged us to build partnerships in our community, have fun doing what we do and share it with others. He noted our regular cluster events, expressed thanks for those in our Club giving amazing service on District committees and on the District leadership team and particularly highlighted our successful Wynspeak competition.

In this centennial year for the Rotary Foundation, Neville reminded us that this fund started with US$26.50 and is now worth US$1.2 billion worldwide. The flagship Foundation project of course has been the eradication of polio with only 21 cases in 3 countries at the moment. It is anticipated that around 2 million people will be immunised over the coming months and it is the dear hope that polio will be eradicated by the end of this Rotary year.

Neville and Rebecca very much hope that as many of us as possible will attend the District Conference in Shepparton. This year’s theme is Connecting Communities Serving Humanity and speakers have been aligned to that theme that also includes social cohesion and inclusion. Neville is currently working with the State Government on inclusion issues. He thanked Louise most sincerely for stepping up to take a role in the Shine on Awards program that recognises people in our community who contribute so much despite their disabilities.des-enertaining-neville

Linda warmly thanked Neville and Rebecca for attending our meeting and addressing our members. The Club will donate $50 to Australian Rotary Health in lieu of a gift of flowers to Rebecca, a thoughtful gesture on her part.

George Dade Becomes a Rotarian


Gifty pinning George’s Dinner Badge on.

George Dade has a been a regular guest to the club as his wife Gifty has been a member for some time and George would come along on Partner Nights and join in the fun and festivities. He obviously enjoyed the camaraderie amongst the members and didn’t want to miss out on any more fun so decided to become a member. So on Wednesday 2nd November 2016, George became an official member of our club and was inducted by our District Governor, Neville John.


President Des, DG Neville, Rotarian Gifty and newest Rotarian George.

We are honoured to welcome you to Rotary George, and thank you for committing to the ideals and values of Rotary and we look forward to your continued contributions to the club and ‘Service Above Self’.

Our Club is always looking for new members. If you are interested in coming along to a meeting as a visitor and see what a friendly and passionate club we are, please come along to one of our meetings on Wednesdays at Di Caprio Family Restaurant (88 Derrimut Road, Hoppers Crossing). Meetings officially begin at 7pm but members begin to arrive from 6:30pm. You are also welcome to give our current Club President, Des a call on 0401 287 050, or leave a message at the bottom of this page and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Occasionally we do have meetings at alternative locations so pleas check the calendar on our home page to ensure we will be there when you are planning to visit. Go to:

Spinocerebeller Ataxia

talk to members and guests about ‘Spinocerebeller Ataxia’, which is a condition that affects the part of the brain called the Cerebellum. The ‘cerebellum’ coordinates voluntary movements such as posture, balance, coordination, and speech, resulting in smooth and balanced muscular activity.


Dr David talking about SCA

This is a summary of the information that was shared with us.

Cerebellum helps with coordination of such daily activities as putting keys in locks, eating and walking, but most people would not thinking immediately of swallowing as needing muscle coordination, or eye movement.

There are 36 types of Spinocerebeller Ataxia (SCA) and it is usually undiagnosed unless the professional has previously had exposure to this condition. 1 to 3 in every 1000,000 people are diagnosed with a type of SCA. SCA falls into three main categories, which are:

  • Inherited – a genetic disorder with the family bloodline)
  • Sporadic (not hereditary)
  • Acquired (from exposure to toxins, stroke, etc)

SC is the most common type diagnosed. Three versions of SCA were discovered in Australia.

SCA is diagnosed by a simple genetic (DNA) test though a simple blood test. The age of onset of SCA and the impact of this disease varies greatly dependent on the type of SCA the person is diagnosed with. Life expectancy also varies greatly based on the type of SCA the person has. Most people diagnosed with SCA are usually wheelchair bound within 10 – 15 years.

The main concern for doctors of patients with SCA is the ability to swallow and the risk of falls. Most people do not experience pain to begin with and if there is pain involved there are specialty medication that can be prescribed different to common pain medications. Speech Pathologists also get involved with SCA patients, as they are able to teach them safer ways of swallowing. One of the first things done by doctors once a patience is diagnosed is to do bone density testing to see their current levels and use this as a baseline for comparison during management of the condition.

Most patients recognise the changes within their own abilities such as stiffness or laziness of limbs or the speech becoming slurred which is commonly assumed the patient is drunk.

More information is available at the US site for National Ataxia Foundation. It is important to access reliable information, as a lot of information found on the Internet is incorrect and misleading.

Thanks to Dr David for visiting our club and educating us on Spinocerebeller Ataxia.


Shaz with Dr David and one of the Fundraising Committee members of SCA.

‘Lift the Lid’ on Mental Illness – Rotary Hat Day 2016

(Extracts taken from the Bulletin dated 19 October 2016)

Thank you to those members, partners and friends who attended this week’s combined Rotary meeting, where we enjoyed the opportunity of meeting members of all four cluster clubs, being Laverton Point Cook, Werribee and Wyndham. Particularly pleasing was the large turnout of members from Hoppers, which continues our recent trend of very high meeting attendances. Well done everyone!


June, Frances and Louise enjoying the festivities


Irene and President Des enjoying the night – that Little Pink Hat is supposed to be on your head Des

We must thank President Sue Selleck and her fellow members from Wyndham Club who hosted the evening. This was a great opportunity for lifting the profile on our fundraising efforts for the “Lift the Lid on Mental Illness” campaign and also to meet some of the members from other clubs with whom we will be working shortly on our joint cluster Public Awareness/Rotary Showcase at selected locations. This combined fundraiser, supported by all four cluster clubs on Wednesday, is a prime example of the type of Fundraising which can be done whilst enjoying fun evening- Well done Wyndham!
We were also pleased to welcome our AG Nicole who was given the arduous task of judging the “craziest hat” competition. Whilst her selections were excellent, it could be argued that she “missed the mark” by overlooking the extraordinary creation of Louise’s elephant hat which was outrageous – bad luck Louise!

(Written by President Des)



Antionette (far right) rewarded for her commitment and community spirit being honour with a Paul Harris recognition.

Steve Payne was the MC for the evening and did a fabulous job in this role. He introduced President Sue Selleck from the Rotary Club of Wyndham to make the first presentation of the evening. Antoinette Spiteri from Bunnings Hoppers Crossing and her husband were invited along not knowing what to expect. President Sue totally surprised Antoinette by naming her a Paul Harris Fellow for all of her dedicated work at Bunnings working with the volunteers who gain valuable fundraising dollars for their organisations through sausage sizzles. Antoinette is only the second non-Rotarian to receive this recognition in the Club’s history, the last one being presented in 2002. Very well deserved Antoinette – congratulations!


James Smith from Victorian Maori Wardens

The second presenter of the evening was James Smith from the Victorian Maori Wardens, a group of volunteers who for the past four years have patrolled trains, buses, shopping centres and other locations and have been a sounding board and confidantes for sometimes troubled young people of Islander background. Their work has been recognised by Victoria police who have embraced the good work this group is doing, without any external funding. President Sue Selleck presented James with a donation from RC Wyndham. They would love to have their own van so perhaps this funding will be put towards that project.

Finally it was hats on and hats off to PDG Murray Verso who “lifted the lid off mental illness” with a presentation on the outstanding work of Australian Rotary Health (ARH), 35 years in existence and one of the largest independent funders of mental health in Victoria.


PDG Murray Verso

Rotarian, Ian Scott of RC Mornington in 1981, founded ARH. The first funding support was raised for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The incidence of SIDS death rate has dropped from 140 babies per annum to 70 babies.

The incidence of mental illness is very common and also very disabling. ARH fill the gap in research funding. Two examples of major ARH funded projects are:

  • Screening test for ovarian cancer 2006-2008 with Associate Professor Gregory Rice
  • Organ transplants 2004-2006 with Associate Professor Gregory Snell

Since 2000 ARH has funded $3.4 million of work in the area of mental health including grants and fellowships. Significant evidence of ARH support have been:

  • Media reporting of suicide
  • Proving an association between diet and depression
  • RC Carlton members Betty Kitchener and Associate Professor Anthony Jorm have developed guidelines for first aid for mental health problems that are widely used both in Australia and overseas.

The Cluster’s “Lift the Lid on Mental Illness” raffle raised $446.95 and a number of our members went home with goodies, including Norm who actually won 3 prizes!! Hoppers Rotarian Shaz bid in the silent auction and her son, Jake, is to be the happy recipient of a framed 2016 Geelong Football Club Team photograph. The evening’s fundraising is the richer by $130 – thank you Shaz!

(Written by Secretary Linda)


Special thanks to our resident Photographer, Frances for these great happy snaps from the night. image12 image11 image10 image8 image7 image6 image3




Werribee Support and Housing CEO Carol Muir Talks About Issues Affecting Wyndham

Our club was pleased to welcome Carol Muir the CEO of Uniting Care Werribee


CEO Carol Muir from Uniting care Werribee Support and Housing was guest speaker on Wednesday 12 October 2016

Support and Housing to our meeting on Wednesday 12 October 2016. Carol shared with us a snapshot of all the work her organisation does. The success and ability to support so many people of Wyndham is owed to the amazing support and dedication of its volunteers and the generous residents of Wyndham.
Below is an outline of the information Carol shared with us.

Uniting Care Werribee Support & Housing has been advocating to state and federal governments, for homelessness resources – both infrastructure and human resources – for the past 16 years, with limited to no success. Wyndham has a longstanding partnership within a consortium of housing and homelessness agencies in the local area – the partnership is called H3 Wyndham. Through this partnership, Wyndham has advocated for the establishment of a housing and support hub for the past six years. Some growth corridors have received an injection of homelessness funding and services, but Wyndham always seems to miss out.

There is strong evidence to suggest that a coordinated approach for the delivery of human services is much more effective than discreet specialist services, particularly for people who are experiencing high levels of vulnerability. Put simply, it is better for everyone involved if we can avoid crisis.

The Wyndham Integrated Service Hub aims to break this cycle through the provision of a complementary preventative and early intervention response, alongside provision of emergency accommodation and support. H3 Wyndham submitted, in December 2015, a proposal for the establishment of the H3 Wyndham Integrated Services Hub for consideration for the Victorian Government’s 2016/17 budget. The business case was developed following meetings with Minister Foley and the then-Director of Housing. H3 Wyndham has received a response to this indicating the proposal has not been seen to be a State Government priority at this stage.

A recent article in the Herald Sun noted that many people sleeping rough in the Melbourne CBD come from the outer suburbs. It is understood that this is a result of a lack of resourcing in our local area. Even though Wyndham is the size of Geelong (and will soon grow to the size of Canberra), many services are out of reach from inner-metropolitan areas.

On 11 August, Wyndham and homeless clients of UCWS&H featured on the ABC’s national program, Late Line. Currently, the homelessness service system in Wyndham is very much geared towards the provision of emergency and/or tertiary support. This means that even if an individual is fortunate enough to receive emergency housing support, they are unlikely to be assisted to address any of their underlying issues or barriers such as unemployment, family breakdown or poor mental health. As a result, it is not uncommon for such individuals to enter a long term cycle of homelessness, ensuing in significant personal, social and economic costs. Residents are required to leave Wyndham to access crisis housing – Geelong or St. Kilda.

Importantly, Wyndham has had a huge increase in rough sleepers over the last six months. In the past 3 months, there have been 9 separate occurrences of individuals and couples sleeping in their cars in the rear car park at UCWS&H including 4 single adults sleeping is swags under our verandas for protection from the elements. Similar stories have been reported from other local support agencies, the local football club and Werribee Equestrian Centre, and Wyndham Council’s local laws team say they’ve never seen this number of people sleeping rough previously. As one of Australia’s fastest growing municipalities, these issues should be considered to be escalating in nature.


Carol sitting with Rotarian Nik discussing the issue of lack of housing in the Wyndham area.

Some other key points to take note of:
• Homelessness services have recorded a doubling of demand from Wyndham residents in the past three years, now a much more significant proportion of total demand regionally.
• Quadrupling of homelessness numbers from last two Censuses. At the last count, more than 400 people are homeless in Wyndham on any night – but we know this number has multiplied.
• Wyndham has by far the highest number of forced rental evictions in the state – VCAT data is available.
• Wyndham has 2 of the top 8 postcodes for ‘Mortgage delinquency’ in Victoria.
• Wyndham has one of the highest numbers of family violence incidents in the state, the primary cause of homelessness in Australia.
• Wyndham has areas of concentrated disadvantage at lowest decile in the SEIFA index (i.e. most disadvantaged in Australia). The choice for Wyndham families between paying for rent, food or bills is demonstrated in our municipality having the highest energy disconnections in the state. Despite Federal government funding cuts for Emergency Relief, UCWS&H has noted an increase in requests for food support over the past 12 months. Client data indicates an increase in those experiencing redundancies, and an even greater casualisation of the work force, with many clients unable to secure enough hours of paid employment.
• There are no local accommodation options or programs within Wyndham for young people.
• Young people exiting the care of DHHS when orders are terminated on their 18th birthday. Most young people are not asked to leave their home by their (foster care) parents they turn 18. This has the flow on effect that less space is available to take on more children in need of fostering.

We thank Carol for coming to our meeting and sharing this valuable insight into issues that are not highly publicised and hope that through of Community Committee we can work with Carol and her team and find ways that we can support the organisation now and into the future.