Rotary Club of South Foreland: Virtual Handover
Club members and some partners dressed in best to mark the handover from President Janet Dagys to 2020/21 President Pauline Goldsack on 24thJune. President Janet began by welcoming everyone and after the Loyal Toast, Mark Watson, now our President Elect, read the Objectives of Rotary to remind us of the principles of the organisation.
Pauline’s previously circulated proposal for the club to twin with the Rotary Club of Nieppe in France, and seconded by Janet, was voted on and carried unanimously. Janet mentioned how welcoming, friendly and enthusiastic Nieppe members were on our visit to their club earlier in the year.
Stuart McVey then gave his Almoner’s Report as follows:
I have some Good News, very good news, good news and some more good news.
Firstly, at the beginning of this Rotary year we had 26 members, plus one honorary member. At the end we have 27 members and one honorary member.
Secondly, looking at our directory at the start of the year, the names on it are the same names as then, so that’s very good news.
Thirdly, those of us with annoying medical conditions and I include our spouses and partners, are being well looked after by the NHS and various providers, although some appointments have had to be cancelled.
Finally, although the Coronavirus has been a major disruption to all of us, think of the new skills we have acquired, online shopping, accessing Netflix, Amazon Prime, Children’s TV and Home Schooling and of course Zoom. All these skills are opening up new opportunities for us all and our Club. Mental activities as well as physical activities are so important for all of us.
And finally, finally, we have all been responsible citizens by following the government guidelines on carrying on with their advice on managing our daily lives to avoid the effects of the Coronavirus. Well done everyone; please continue to do so.
And have you noticed I have avoided saying ‘unprecedented’ once.
A good example of taking a fundraising opportunity in these changed times is Stuart’s Challenge to climb the equivalent of Ben Nevis (1,345 metres high) which he began in early April. His garden is steep and terraced with one climb being equivalent to 6 metres. He calculated that it would take 225 days to complete the challenge and will be half-way there by early July. Publicity is taking off: a flyer has been completed, the story is on our Club and District websites and local papers have given a positive response. Stuart also intends to set up a club Just Giving page with the money raised being divided between the Dover Foodbank and the local Citizens’ Advice Bureau.
In her address Janet spoke of the honour of being Club President for 2019/20 and her pride in the year’s achievements, particularly with the support given to her chosen charity, the Dover Foodbank. Coping successfully with the change brought about by Covid 19 with the use of virtual meetings has been the latest challenge. She thanked club members for their contributions during her year of office and gave best wishes to Pauline for the coming year.
Pauline thanked Janet for a good year which ended with doing things very differently such as club Zoom meetings and Skype with Nieppe. We still managed to complete some funding for Dover Foodbank, so well done on behalf of us all.
Pauline said that she never expected to be President again but while the year ahead will be very different she can use her past experience to help. The way the club operates will change as outlined in the three-year plan, with all members involved in teams. There will be five team leaders: James for Charities, Chris for Activities, Terry for Entertainment and Stuart for Membership, with Suzanne to help where needed.
Pauline’s chosen charity is the Citizens’ Advice Bureau, of which she is a Trustee. At the moment she is involved in more meetings than usual as the Bureau’s role has expanded with the difficulties caused by Universal Credit and the complicated forms to prove citizenship as a result of Brexit, as examples. She also plans to raise money for polio eradication.
While we are unlikely to meet face to face at club meetings in the foreseeable future it is planned to meet in small socially distanced groups in some members’ gardens. This has now been arranged for 4th and 11th July.
Some ideas for next year are to hold the Shuffleboard Evening and possibly a Silent Auction. We can still have speakers at zoom meetings and will also have a club debate to consider such issues as to where and how often we meet. Keith has heard from the Marina Hotel that they will be opening on 4th July; this is just to make us aware. At present the Coronavirus pandemic is far from over and whatever we do will be guided by the safety and well-being of members.
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