In December 2022 we held our first Santa Paws event.  Furry family members came along to have a photo with Santa at the Park Centre Rotary Nook, situated in the Timaru Botanical Gardens. 
SANTA PAWS 2022 2023-01-31 11:00:00Z 0


During our 2022 Christmas Dinner, the club honored Jess Hewitson and Jenny Ensor with Paul Harris Fellows.  President Cheryl Surprised them both with the awards and below is a short summary of their efforts.
PAUL HARRIS FELLOWS 2022 2023-01-31 11:00:00Z 0

Toot for Tucker 2022

This year we had 9 volunteers who helped collect food for 'Toot for Tucker'.   
It was a lovely night for food gathering and there was great support for our community.
204 banana boxes were packed up ready to head out to our local food banks for distribution. 
Thanks to the Lions Service Group for organising the event and St Johns for providing the venue. It's so great to see all of our service organizations working together for the betterment of our community.
Pictured helping with the collection on the left are Edwin, Rotarian Jess Hewitson, Acting Sergeant Ben, and Eddie.
Toot for Tucker 2022 2022-11-22 11:00:00Z 0
Santa Paws 2022-11-22 11:00:00Z 0





We headed back to the orchard with family and friends to pick apples for The Salvation Army, St Vincent de Paul, Food Bank, Te Aitarakihi Marae-a-iwi, and Family Works.
APPLE PICKING - DAY 2! 2022-04-02 11:00:00Z 0


Posted by Jessica Hewitson
The club had an opportunity to help out our friends at Family Works this week. 
They have been donated apples from an orchard who were unable to export their apples this season, the only catch was they needed to pick, pack and distribute the apples themselves....... and that's where we jumped into action smiley
APPLE PICKING DAY Jessica Hewitson 2022-03-25 11:00:00Z 0


Posted by Gilly Oppenheim
The Rotary Club of Timaru members and the Charitable Trust have a strong focus on empowering children to reach their potential. Hence their donating $10,000.00 with the addition of $20,000.00 from the Bill Mackay Bequest to CPlay to create an environment for more stimulating and inclusive play for all ages and abilities which will be of benefit to many.
From Left: CPlay committee member Chris Fauth and his daughter Annabelle, CPlay Secretary & Charitable Trust member Lynette Wilson, Charitable Trust Member & Immediate Past President Jess Hewitson, CPlay Chair Owen Jackson (OJ), Charitable Trust Chair and Past President Bev Slooten, Charitable Trust Member & Honorary Club Member Ashley Miliken.
CPLAY DONATION Gilly Oppenheim 2022-03-18 11:00:00Z 0


What a fantastic turn out at our ShelterBox New Zealand fundraising quiz held on Thursday 6th May at The Bay Hill Restaurant. 
Thank you to all the wonderful people who participated the night, we hope you enjoyed your evening!
Special thanks to Roger and Lisa at The Bay Hill Restaurant for hosting us 💚 and thanks to all the business and families who donated prizes and items for auction 🥰

SHELTERBOX FUNDRAISING QUIZ Jess Hewitson 2021-05-09 12:00:00Z 0


Saving babies' lives!
Hundreds of them!
Imagine reducing a country's infant mortality rate from 56 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2002 to 16 deaths per 1,000 live births in 2019.
That's what club member Julie Dockrill and her team achieved in Mongolia and earned her Rotary International's prestigious  "People of Action: Champions of Health" award - one of only 6 awarded world wide.
  • the Timaru Herald's story behind this award here  and
  • about Rotary's "People of Action: Champions of Health" awards here


After our meeting, some of our members headed along to Caroline Bay to do a bit of cleaning up! It was a lovely night for a stroll
BEACH CLEAN UP 2021-04-01 11:00:00Z 0


Posted by Jess Hewitson
Our club was asked to help officiate the first annual SC Mini Golf Champs during Waitangi Weekend.  As well as being a mini golf championship, the event was to serve as a fundraiser for the Temuka Museum.  On Monday 7 of us headed out to Temuka on a very foggy morning, 'Muka Putt' was our first venue.
OFFICIATING THE SC MINI GOLF CHAMPS Jess Hewitson 2021-02-09 11:00:00Z 0


Our club had a busy Sunday at the annual Timaru Christmas Parade and along with the South Canterbury Rose Festival. 
Our Past President Lynette Wilson has represented our club as part of the organising committee for the Christmas Parade. She rallied our club members together to help with the float registrations, health and safety checks of the floats pre-parade, and also with the road marshaling during the parade.  Our food caravan was in full swing down at the bay for the Rose Festival at the same time as the Parade and the team down there were keep very busy most of the day.  DG Dylan and his family featured in the parade in his Shelter Box Rotary Beetle.  
CHRISTMAS PARADE & ROSE FESTIVAL 2020 2020-12-06 11:00:00Z 0


Please get in touch with Lionel if you would like a ticket, but get in fast they are selling quickly!
POLIO FUNDRAISER Jess 2020-11-11 11:00:00Z 0


The new direction indicators erected by the Club at Timaru Airport. This replaces the original signs erected by the Club around 60 years ago, in 1960.
It's fitting that this project, started some months ago, is completed at a time when the airport is coming to life again with the lifting of some COVID-19 restrictions.


Steve Wills has been recognised by the Rotary Club of Timaru for the enormous contribution he has made to our community over many years both as part of his work as a police officer and through his many other commuity interests and involvements.
Rotary recognises people who make a significant contribution to their community by donating $US 1,000 in their name to Rotary's charitable organisation, The Rotary Foundation. This entitles the recipient to be called a "Paul Harris Fellow", the award being named after Rotary's founder.  This is the second time Steve has received such recognition by Rotary.
The range of Steve's service to our community is staggering, much of it aimed at encouraging and supporting young people to get involved in sport, and working to provide opportunities for youth in our community to find their feet. His primary drive is to see the young adults become better people.
STEVE WILLS - PAUL HARRIS FELLOW 2020-09-03 12:00:00Z 0


A major milestone has been reached in the effort to eradicate polio world-wide.
On 25 August 2020 the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that transmission of the wild poliovirus has officially been stopped in all 47 countries of its African region.
This comes after decades of hard won gains in the region by Rotary and its partners in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) — WHO, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Gavi, the vaccine alliance. It's an historic and vital step toward global eradication of polio, which is Rotary’s top priority.
The Rotary Club of Timaru has been contributing to this project over several years both with funds donated personally by Club members, and with the proceeds of the Club's community fundraising activities. Everyone who supports Rotary's projects can rightly feel a sense of pride in this achievement.


A team of Rotarians and volunteers led by Rotarian Tony Henderson has been busy collecting, cutting up, bagging and delivering kindling for those in need in and around Timaru for the past several years. Click HERE to read the full story.  


Rotary Clubs honour citizens who have made a significant contribution to the community by donating US$1,000 in their name to the Rotary Foundation, entitling them to be called a "Paul Harris Fellow". (Paul Harris was the founder of Rotary International).
Timaru lawyer Tony Shaw was made a Paul Harris Fellow by Timaru Rotary Club President Jess Hewitson at the Club's meeting on Tuesday 4th August 2020 in recognition of the outstanding contribution he has made to IHC both in South Canterbury and nationally over many years.
Tony was first invited to join the IHC South Canterbury Branch committee 40 years ago and served IHC for many years at a governance level both in South Canterbury and at a national level.
He was a National IHC Board member from 1998 to 2005 and was IHC National President for three years from 2002 to 2005.  In 2005 Tony was made a Life Member of IHC New Zealand.  Tony returned to the IHC National Boardroom last year after a break of 15 years, reappointed to the Board in September last year to ensure the financial stability of IHC in a climate that is seeing other disability providers struggling after Covid-19 and was this year elected IHC National Board Chair.
Tony has broad experience in community and volunteer organisations, including the Rotary Club of Timaru.  His first contact with Rotary was as a Group Study Exchange team member, put forward by this club to the selection process in Dunedin. He was successful and was a member of the Group Study Exchange team that went to Rotary District 7150 in Upper New York State in 1989. 
Tony has continued to support Rotary activities and was MC for a good number of Rotary Charity Auctions held by the  Rotary Club of Timaru in the early 2000’s.     
TONY SHAW, PAUL HARRIS FELLOW 2020-08-06 12:00:00Z 0


Rotary Club of Timaru President Jess Hewitson welcomed new member Lee Johns to our Club at our Tuesday 21st July meeting.
Lee is well-known throughout South Canterbury as an experienced travel broker and as former manager of the Returned Services Association. We're looking forward to enjoying Lee's company and working with her on our community projects.


The Rotary Club of Timaru celebrated a very successful Rotary year under President Bev Slooten's leadership and welcomed Incoming President Jess Hewitson and her leadership team for the 2020-21 Rotary Year.
We celebrated the occasion with an excellent turnout of members and their partners supported by our District Governor Dylan Murray and his partner Rebecca Aitchison, our Assistant Governor Raewyn Francis, several Rotarians from neighbouring clubs and some of our Honorary members.
The Rotary Club of Timaru Leadership Team for 2020-21 - all dressed to fit in with the evening's sporting theme.
From left: Jenny Ensor (Treasurer), Hugh Perry (Director), Lionel Wilson (Secretary), Lance Wensley (Director), Cheryl Rose (Sergeant at Arms), Jess Hewitson (President), Bev Slooten (Past President) and Dave Woods (Director)

Jess Hewitson kicked off her year as president with a sports-themed changeover dinner, another delicious meal from the crew at the Timaru Town & Country Club: roast beef and apple crumble.
Three members were recognised for their huge contribution to both the club and the community over several years with the award of Paul Harris Fellowships in the form of a donation of $US 1,000 to the Rotary Foundation, Rotary's International Charity, in their name.
District Governor Dylan Murray, Paul Harris Fellowship (PHF) recipient Tony Henderson, outgoing President Bev Slooten, PHF recipients Robyn Baldwin and Stephen Don, and incoming President Jess Hewitson
Robyn Baldwin and Stephen Don were made Paul Harris Fellows and Tony Henderson received a Sapphire pin to add to his existing Paul Harris Fellow badge. 


The Rotary Club of Timaru Charitable Trust has donated $30,000 to enable YMCA to deliver more than 70 driving instruction scholarships in the coming year.
In late 2019 YMCA launched the Y•Drive Driving School offering competitively priced driving instruction with the aim of reducing barriers to employment and further education. When they realised that driving instruction was not achievable to everyone in our community the vision for a community driving scholarship was born. The Rotary Club of Timaru is delighted to be able to support this valuable community initiative.


Last week Peter and Janet Russell spoke to the Club with photos and video on their visits to the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida and the Johnston Space centre in Houston.
Peter began with some background information about the beginning of the space race and showed pictures of the Saturn 5 Rocket used for the Apollo missions.
On their second visit to Florida they had hoped to see a launch of the Space Shuttle Endeavour but this was postponed several times.  However they did see the Endeavour on the launch pad (see photo).
In Houston last year they heard a talk by the astronaut Jerry Ross who had been on no less than seven Shuttle flights.  He had undertaken many space walks, one to help set up the International Space Station.  A highlight of this visit was a view of the Houston Mission Control Room which now monitors the orbit of the ISS, and they were able to witness a live sunrise.
Peter and Janet finished with a brief presentation of their visit to the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington which tracks the history of flight from the Wright brothers to the moon landing.
KENNEDY SPACE CENTRE Peter Russell 2020-02-25 11:00:00Z 0

CLASSROOMS IN THE CLOUDS - supporting education in Nepal

In 2016 Timaru Girls High School (TGHS) started an initiative to fund a teacher in the village of Damku, Nepal, with the then principal, Sarah Davis, together with funding from the Rotary Club of Timaru. The catalyst was Chris Jensen- Burke, an ex-Timaru Girls High School head girl, and now a lawyer in Sydney who regularly climbs in Nepal and is now married to a Nepalese Sherpa.
Last year Brenna Shaw, a 19 year old ex-TGHS student had the opportunity to spend three months in rural Nepal seeing first-hand the work CITC provides to many communities.  Brenna has always been passionate about everyone having access to a quality education and also about empowerment and equality for women and girls.
CLASSROOMS IN THE CLOUDS - supporting education in Nepal Gilly Oppenheim 2019-12-09 11:00:00Z 0


Posted by John Barton
ROMAC and Interplast are two charities Rotary associates with to provide life-changing medical aid to children from the Pacific region.
The Club's Charitable Trust has made donations of $5,000 to each of these charities in the name of Bill McKay, a former Club member whose major bequest to the Club is held in the Charitable Trust.  
All surgical and medical staff working in the programme are volunteers - donations fund air fares, visas, and other external costs of the programme.   Read more about ROMAC here ...  (Click here to donate to ROMAC)
Interplast sends teams of volunteer plastic and reconstructive surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses and allied health professionals to provide life-changing surgery and medical training in 17 countries across the Asia Pacific region.  This is done in partnership with local organisations, including hospitals, universities and local NGOs.
Interplast's mission is to ‘repair bodies and rebuild lives’ and they do this by providing surgical services to those who could not otherwise afford or access these, and by building the capacity of local medical systems through training and mentoring programs.  Read more about Interplast here ...



Posted by Gilly Oppenheim
What an inspiring presentation from David Black, who established Project Starfish 15 years ago to support those fighting child trafficking and sex slavery in Cambodia and Thailand.. This Dunedin Central Rotarian is a pragmatist and he is under no illusions of the difficulty of his crusade. As he said, “Slavery’s bad enough. It gets worse when you add ‘child’, but put ‘sex’ in the middle of it, and sometimes people just don’t want to know!” When it comes to horrifying stories and examples, David has no shortage of material.


For the second time in recent months The Rotary Club of Timaru has recognised a fellow South Cantabrian for exceptional service to others. On Tuesday 19th February President Elect Bev Slooten celebrated Margaret Stocker's humanitarian work in improving the living conditions of the people in the Middle Hills region of the Himalayas in Nepal.
The Club has donated $US1,000 to the Rotary Foundation for charitable purposes in Margaret's name, and Margaret is consequently recognised as a Paul Harris Fellow.  
You can read about Marg's work in Nepal in the article about The Forgotten Sherpas of Nepal Trust below.
You can read about Rotary's Paul Harris fellows HERE.
MARGARET STOCKER, PAUL HARRIS FELLOW Gilly Oppenheim 2019-02-26 11:00:00Z 0


Owen Jones, perhaps better known under his pen name, Owen Marshall, has been awarded a Paul Harris Fellow by the Rotary Club of Timaru for the outstanding contribution he has made as one of the country’s most successful authors, and as a world-class short story writer.
Rotary recognises the significant achievement of members of the community by making a donation of $US1,000 to the Rotary Foundation for charitable purposes in the name of the recipient, who is consequently recognised as a Paul Harris Fellow.
In 1992, Owen Jones was awarded the Robert Burns Fellowship at the University of Otago, so he decided to leave full time teaching position as Deputy Principal at Craighead School and devote his time to writing.
As well as receiving Fellowships at both Canterbury and Otago universities he has taught courses for aspiring writers at Aoraki Polytechnic (now ARA) and at Canterbury University. The latter awarded him the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters in 2002, and in 2005 appointed him an adjunct professor.


Posted by Gilly Oppenheim
Marg Stocker, one of six Trustees of the Forgotten Sherpas of Nepal Trust, treated us to an excellent address this week about the work of the Trust which was established in 2013 to improve living conditions in north-eastern Nepal.
The villages in the ‘middle hills’ of the Himalayas are at an altitude of 2,200 – 3,500 metres; access is difficult and they are generally regarded as Nepal’s poorest and most deprived areas. Infrastructure is almost non-existent, there are no roads and access is by steep and rough walking tracks across the hills.
So how did Marg get involved?
THE FORGOTTEN SHERPAS OF NEPAL TRUST Gilly Oppenheim 2018-10-16 11:00:00Z 0


Rotary Club of Timaru members are hugely proud to have our long-standing member Paul Dewsbery's contribution to our community recognised with a well-deserved Queen's Service Medal in the Queen's Birthday Honours.
Paul's award recognises his services to the community over the past 40 years.  His contribution to the community has come through several groups, and began with the Timaru Rotary Club, which he joined in 1980.

"Rotary really started me off in volunteering," he said. "I was nominated by somebody to join and I've been there ever since."

During his long involvement with Rotary Paul has held many club offices, and served as president of the club from 1998 to 1999.  During this time he has been involved in several key community projects and has taken a leading part in several.


GODZone Adventure Race 2018

Posted by Gilly Oppenheim
On the go for 35 hours without a break through forest tracks, down riverbeds, and across open countryside. Abseiling a 100-metre vertical drop. Crawling through narrow spaces in an underground cave.  Sound like fun?

Jonathan Young, the principal of Waimate Centennial School, has always been an outdoors enthusiast and to him this is great fun. He recently spoke to our club about his experience as a team member in the 2018 GODZone Adventure Race.
This is an annual multi-day non-stop expedition-style adventure race covering over 530 km of rugged terrain over ten days which both starts and finishes at Te Anau.
GODZone Adventure Race 2018 Gilly Oppenheim 2018-05-29 12:00:00Z 0


Mike Parr has been a member of the Rotary Club of Timaru since April 2001. On 8th May 2018 he was awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship, refered to in Rotary as a "PHF". 
Our Club awards Paul Harris Fellowships, named after Rotary's founder Paul Harris, for making a significant contribution to the Club and/or the community.
Mike has at one time or another chaired most of the Club’s committees; Community Service, Fellowship, International, Youth and Foundation, some more than once.  He has been a Club director twice, was Club President in the Rotary year 2009/10 and chaired the Club's Charitable Trust in 2010/11.
MEET OUR NEW "PAUL HARRIS FELLOW" 2018-05-09 12:00:00Z 0


I attended Rotary D9980 Conference in Dunedin this last weekend, along with Lionel & Jess Hewitson from our NRG club. For those of you who couldn't make it, we can assure you this was definitely one you would have enjoyed, the Rotary Club of Dunedin, along with DG Bruce Cowan, did a superb job of getting just the right mix of venues, speakers, caterers, band, etc, with just enough formality to make sure the fun & Rotary communication aspect was not lost.

Congratulations – Our club were the joint winners of the District Website trophy, with Queenstown club.

There was a common Rotary Alumini theme that became apparent as the weekend unfolded, maybe in some cases co-incidental, but shows how the Rotary giving keeps giving, many years later in some cases.

Matty Maclean (TV One Weather man) did a great job as Master of Ceremonies. Matty comes from Queenstown and is a former RYE student to Austria – 2004. (Lionel & I remember the 16yr old we helped on his journey when we were involved in the RYE committee).

Jess Hewitson was one of the chaperones for RYE students during the weekend – former RYE student herself in 2002. Jess was also in the winning impromptu Battle of the Sexes Female Karaoke team on Saturday night.

Rotaract presentation – 60 members currently, at the University of Otago, Bridget Rollinson is the current President, (ex Waimate Rotary club student rep) her presentation team of four, included an ex RYLA participant, and Jack – former Interact member of TBHS club. They outlined the projects Rotaract is involved with in the community.

Bridget’s sister, Clare Rollinson, was also at conference as an RYE rebound – returning in January this year after completing her last year away.

SNIPPETS FROM CONFERENCE Lynette Wilson 2018-05-08 12:00:00Z 0


Posted by Jess Hewitson
The Rotary Club of Timaru has within it a group called NRG - Next Rotary Generation. These younger members are full members of the Club but arrange meetings and activities that fit in with their busy life styles. Recently NRG members Lisa Moloney and Trish Johnston (and Trish's daughter Niamh) delivered 12 netballs for the students of the Arowheuna Maori School on Wednesday 2nd May.
One of the teachers approached NRG to ask if there was any way we could help as last year the netball team was using an old very worn out basketball to play with.
Through our contacts at Netball South Canterbury we were able to acquire balls and a ball bag to give to the school.
NRG (NEXT ROTARY GENERATION) NETBALL DELIVERY Jess Hewitson 2018-05-02 12:00:00Z 0


Rotary gets help on the ground as quickly as possible when our Pacific Island neighbours face emergencies.  Rotary Clubs in New Zealand have joined together to form a company, Rotary New Zealand World Community Service (RNZWCS), to enable them to work together to support communities in the South Pacific.
One initiative, Rotary Emergency Response Kits (ERKs), delivers urgently-needed supplies as quickly as possible in an emergency affecting our South Pacific island neighbours.  ERKs provide support where it is needed most. Rotary volunteers in NZ pack the kits which are then distributed to depots in the Islands to ensure a supply of kits is on hand for rapid deployment in an emergency. 
The Rotary Club of Timaru has just donated $6,000 to RNZWCS which will fund 10 emergency response kits. Rotary Clubs in New Zealand, supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, have distributed 5,588 ERKS to the Pacific since 2007.


With the days becoming just a little wintery it's time for Rotary Club of Timaru members to start splitting kindling wood so we have a good stock on hand to delivery to those who can't split their own kindling.
Through the generosity of Don George of Top Cut Firewood, the willing volunteers from the Rotary Club of Timaru are spending Saturday mornings splitting up and bagging kindling for distribution to the elderly and disabled over the coming winter months.
WINTER'S COMING - KINDLING NEEDED 2018-04-27 12:00:00Z 0


Posted by Jenny Ensor on Feb 22, 2018
What a night!
Atrocious weather, resilient attendees from as far afield as Winchester, Waimate and Pleasant Point and an outstanding presenter in William Pike. What more could you want?
William took us through the Mount Ruapehu eruption that changed his life.  He described calculating his chances of survival as he lay with his damaged legs trapped by debris, alone in a shelter on Mount Ruapehu.  He was unconscious during the rescue operation. When talking about his recovery he emphasised the importance of his family and friends and setting challenges for himself.


People join Rotary for a variety of reasons. For many of our members one of those reasons is to put something back into our community.
Over the past 7 months members of the Rotary Club of Timaru have been involved in a number of projects including: 
  • Planting trees at the Otipua Wetlands: The Club purchased and planted trees in the Otipua Wetlands and ensured they were watered over the following weeks.
  • Cataract Surgery for pacific islanders: The Club donated $5,000 to the Fred Hollows Foundation to fund cataract operations for 200 people in the South Pacific.
  • Help at the Community Christmas Dinner: Several Club members collected and transported kitchen equipment, crockery, utensils and Christmas decorations from the club's storage container and after the dinner collected, returned and stacked the equipment back in the container.
THE ROTARY CLUB OF TIMARU AT WORK 2018-02-10 11:00:00Z 0


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Dr Bruce Small, who has been practising in Timaru for 32 years, spoke to us about an interesting potpourri of things relating to our health.
Dr Small reminded us that to promote healthy living we to maintain our fitness, to watch our nutrition, have a positive attitude, and get professional health care.
South Canterbury can boast one of the highest rates of immunisation in the country; quick time for cancer treatment; ED waiting times on target; a good level of secondary care and a dedicated primary care team.


When one of our members noticed the state of the concrete block wall surrounding Timaru's roller skating rink he saw an opportunity.
Timaru's roller skating club has over many years helped countless young people to get involved in a great sport, and has provided a level of coaching that has seen one of the Club's members, Nicole Begg, become world champion. Twice.
We decided to lend a hand by spring cleaning the wall surrounding the Club's rink on Caroline Bay.
ANOTHER (CLEAN) BRICK IN THE WALL 2017-11-29 11:00:00Z 0


On Tuesday 14th November over 45 past members, their partners and special guests joined with us to celebrate the Club's 90th Anniversary, with District Governor Bruce Cowan and Jill as our Guests of Honour.
DG Bruce highlighted the Club's achievements and its contribution to the District over the past 90 years and acknowledged the Club's 5 past District Governors.
90 YEARS AND STILL GOING STRONG 2017-11-19 11:00:00Z 0


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We were delighted and privileged to have Rotary District 9980's District Governor Bruce Cowan join us for our meeting last Tuesday.
DG Bruce gave us an excellent address during which he bamboozled us with numbers. Well, he was an accounting teacher in a former life, after all!
  • 1.239 million Rotarians worldwide
  • 35,660 Rotary clubs, in 220 countries
  • 112 years since Rotary was established.
We were reminded that we have 31+ clubs in District 9980 and Bruce showed us that Rotarians are doing the same sorts of things in the same ways all over the world; improving communities access to clean water, improving sanitation and hygiene, providing education;  the list goes on.

Our live link with Scott Base

The Rotary Club of Timaru is extending its reach using video technology to make contact with people outside our local community.
We held our first such live link on Tuesday 12 September 2017 with Rose Forrester and Paul Lovegrove at Scott Base in Antarctica.
Rose is the Winter Base Leader managing the winter-over team for the 2016/17 season. She oversees the general operations at Scott Base, liaises with other International Antarctic programmes, acts as a JP for Ross Island and, as a medic, she provides medical support and emergency response for base staff and visitors.
Paul is a science technician responsible for the Scott Base Information Technology infrastructure gathering data such as measuring the regeneration of the ozone layer and changes in the sea ice to send to NIWA and thence to universities worldwide.
Our live link with Scott Base 2017-09-12 12:00:00Z 0

Government commits $5 million to Rotary for Polio Eradication

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The New Zealand Government has announced a contribution of $5,000,000 to Rotary New Zealand for the Global Polio Eradication Initiative to help the global fight to end polio.  
Only three countires (Pakistan, Nigeria and Afghanistan) are not yet free of polio; in the rest of the world polio has been eradicated through a programme operating since 1988 in which Rotary has been a key partner.  Through this programme the incidence of polio worldwide has been reduced by over 99%.
Over 16,000,000 people who once would have their lives blighted by polio have been saved from that fate, and governments have been able to commit more that US$27 billion that once would have been required for caring for polio suffers to other health initiatives.
Rotary is committed to ensure that this success is continued to the point where there are no new polio cases. If one case remains, the risk that polio could resurge and spread to countries that are now polio-free remains.
When polio has been removed, it will join smallpox as the only human diseases to be permanently eradicated from the world.
Government commits $5 million to Rotary for Polio Eradication 2017-09-08 12:00:00Z 0

Timaru's Next Rotary Generation (NRG) Club Members

Posted by Gilly Oppenheim on Aug 16, 2017
NRG stands for Rotary Next Generation.  Our NRG members are under the umbrella of and affiliated to the Rotary Club of Timaru. Unlike our club members, who meet weekly and usually have a speaker, the NRG Timaru members meet on the last Tuesday of each month over a drink, at a different venue each time, to discuss projects.
This format appeals to younger members aged between 25 and 42, who are time poor, but who want to continue the good work that Rotary does. At this stage they have six members, ably led by Jessica Hewitson, who originally got involved with Rotary as an exchange student to Basel in 2002. Jessica is now involved at District level with the Rotary Youth Exchange programme and another member, Simon Finch has been co-opted onto the District 9980 Communications team. Their newest and youngest member, Kelsie Parish, was inducted at last night’s meeting
Timaru's Next Rotary Generation (NRG) Club Members Gilly Oppenheim 2017-08-15 12:00:00Z 0

Kiwi Can and Project K: building positive values and life skills 

Posted on Aug 09, 2017
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The K2 Development Trust, which is managed from Christchurch under the auspices of the Graeme Dingle Foundation provides a series of programmes to help young people develop positive attitudes and values, and learn important life skills.
Noeline Allan, Canterbury Regional Manager for the Graham Dingle Foundation spoke about the Kiwi Can programme, an energy-packed primary school programme aimed at kids aged 5 to 12 which teaches values such as integrity and respect, and delivers fun-filled learning to schools all around the country.
Kiwi Can and Project K: building positive values and life skills 2017-08-08 12:00:00Z 0

Asian University for Women

Posted by Gilly Oppenheim
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Our guest speaker on 18 July was Dr Tiffany Cone, Assistant Professor of Humanities at The Asian University for Women. Located in Chittagong, a coastal city in South East Bangladesh, the University seeks to graduate women who will be skilled and innovative professionals, service-oriented leaders in the businesses and communities in which they will work and live, and promoters of intercultural understanding and sustainable human and economic development in Asia and throughout the world.
Throughout much of the developing world girls and women are often subject to unequal treatment and have limited access to education compared to boys and men; the disparity increases significantly at higher levels of education (i.e. worse at secondary, but worst at tertiary). Women from rural and poor populations are particularly disadvantaged in their educational opportunities. AUW aims precisely to address these disparities: to respond to the lack of sufficient opportunities for higher education for women across the region.
Asian University for Women Gilly Oppenheim 2017-08-03 12:00:00Z 0

Death of Rotary International President-elect Sam F Owori

Rotary International President Elect Sam F Owori died unexpectedly last Thursday as a result of post-operative complications from a planned surgery.
Sam was a member of the Rotary Club of Kampala in Uganda for 38 years. “Remember Sam as the outstanding , hard-working Rotarain he was,” said Rotary International Present Ian Riseley. “ In this difficult time, I ask you to keep his wife, the Owori family and Sam’s millions of friends around the world in your prayers”
When he was nominated last year, Sam said, “ Rotary has become a way of life for me – with the intrinsic value and core belief in mutual responsibility and concern for one another as a cornerstone. I feel immense satisfaction knowing that through Rotary, I’ve helped someone live better.”

Sam’s term as Rotary’s 108th president would have begun on July 1st 2018.
Death of Rotary International President-elect Sam F Owori 2017-07-15 12:00:00Z 0

Peter Russell, new president of the Rotary Club of Timaru.

Posted by Gilly Oppenheim on Jul 15, 2017
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Peter, the Club's president for 2017-18, is looking forward to his year as President, and plans to build on recent changes aimed at strengthening the club, ensuring the community understands what modern Rotary stands for and does in our community, and ensuring members enjoy the social and community service activities that Rotarians are known for.
Peter was born in Weymouth,  Dorset, in the United Kingdom, on December 8th, 1945. At the age of sixteen Peter went to London to begin his training in the banking industry, and so started a life-long career in banking and finance. He initially worked for Leopold Joseph & Sons, Merchant Bankers, where he rubbed shoulders with famous people such as Lord Brooke, Prince Rupert Lowenstein and Jonathan Guinness. His next job was with Exco, an investment and foreign exchange company based in the City of London, where he was involved in starting the Japanese side of the business. Subsequently he and Janet lived in Tokyo for three years, where he worked for M.W. Marshall & Co in foreign exchange.
Peter Russell, new president of the Rotary Club of Timaru. Gilly Oppenheim 2017-07-14 12:00:00Z 0

Vietnam and Cambodia with Gilly Oppenheim

Gilly Oppenheim spoke to the Club about her recent three week trip to Vietnam and Cambodia. Gilly went with the inaugural Solos Trip run by Discover Travel in Christchurch.
She found Vietnam a wonderful country to visit – lovely people, delicious food (fresh, fragrant and not too spicy), a unique history and some breathtaking scenery, especially in the surreal landscape of Halong Bay where she went kayaking.
Gilly found the Vietnamese people to be amazingly resilient, holding no grudges towards those responsible for the ‘American War’ from 1954 -1974 which resulted in dreadful casualties (3 million Vietnamese killed) and the awful effects of Agent Orange (over 6 million hectares contaminated and hideous birth deformities).
Vietnam and Cambodia with Gilly Oppenheim Gilly Oppenheim 2017-07-14 12:00:00Z 0

A life-changing trip to Israel

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Dr Jill Harland, Head of the History Department at Timaru Boys High School, travelled to Israel in February this year to attend a seminar at the World Holocaust Remembrance Centre in Tel Aviv, Israel. The trip was sponsired by The World Holocaust Remembrance Centre Yad Vashem and Wellington-based Holocaust Museum of New Zealand.
Twenty five New Zealand teachers, together with teachers from other parts of the world, gathered to listen to 116 hours of lectures sharing the message of human rights. They learned about Jewish literature, music, art and the Holocaust, with the clear message of “ Safely in , safely out”, when teaching their students  about the difficult issues related to the Holocaust.
Dr Harland said they were always aware of the Israeli military presence, but that they never felt vulnerable and that this trip was a life changing experience.  During her time in Israel Dr Harland visited a number of historically-important sites, as well as more traditional tourist destinations.

One of the positive outcomes of visit was the wealth of teaching resources Dr Harland was able to bring back with her, and which she uses to help her students understand issues related to genocide.
A life-changing trip to Israel Gilly Oppenheim 2017-07-04 12:00:00Z 0

Sustainable seafood harvesting

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Dave Woods, a member of our Club, the Rotary Club of Timaru, gave us a fascinating talk about new fish harvesting systems being developed by Precision Seafood Harvesting, the company he manages, and for which he won one the 2014 Innovator of the Year award.  The aim of the project is to develop new seafood harvesting methods and equipment that helps the industry land fish in the best possible condition and reduce the by-catch of under-size fish.
Sustainable seafood harvesting 2017-06-20 12:00:00Z 0

Local Rotarians in India

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Bev Slooten, a member of the Rotary Club of Timaru,  gave us a wonderful talk about her recent trip to India. For part of their trip Bev and her husband Adriaan joined members of the Waimate Rotary club who were visiting a hospital their club has supported with funding for equipment.
They landed in Mumbai at the beginning of February 2107.  They found Mumbai with its population of 22 million to be chaotic and polluted, but also surprisingly westernised as the economic powerhouse of India. They particularly enjoyed the traditional street markets in Kala Ghoda which provide income for families and for their children’s education.
During their travels in India Bev and Adrian visited several projects supported by Rotary.
Local Rotarians in India Gilly Oppenheim 2017-06-14 12:00:00Z 0

Any CPR is better than no CPR

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On Tuesday evening Christine Horne of St Johns, Geraldine, reminded us of the value of being able to perform CPR and made the point that, even if we’re not expert, we should be ready to give it our best shot.
Christine’s two key messages were:
  • when the need arises ANY CPR is better than NO CPR.
  • “30 and 2, no matter who”. That is, 30 chest compressions followed by 2 breaths no matter whether it’s a child or an adult.
Any CPR is better than no CPR John Barton 2017-05-22 12:00:00Z 0

Estelle Arundell : Volunteering in Malawi

Instead of heading off to university at the end of her Year 13 at Craighead in 2015, Estelle decided to take a Gap year volunteering for 6 months as a secondary school teacher in Malawi.
It was an isolated rural placement, where she taught Chemistry, Geography, Life skills and PE to classes of about 100 students at a time.
For an 18 year old straight out of boarding school, this was a scary experience at first and Estelle encountered many challenges. She had no idea where Malawi was and she was totally unprepared for the isolated existence she was going to.
Estelle Arundell : Volunteering in Malawi Gilly Oppenheim 2017-05-16 12:00:00Z 0

Orkney Island Roots

On Tuesday 9th May Margaret Dockrill gave us a fascinating talk about an area unfamiliar to most of us - the Orkney Islands, an archipelago situated to the north of Scotland.
Margaret’s father was one of thirteen children brought up on a croft on the small northwest orkney island of Westray. What a beautiful windswept place it was with the greenest grass and the fattest cattle. These islands have a temperate climate, influenced by the Gulf Stream drift, and fertile soils, with the inhabitants being mostly farmers and fishermen. Oil has brought wealth to the Orkneys today.
These islands share a Norse and Pictish history and were absorbed into Scotland in the 15th century. Tourism is important today with distinctive prehistoric ruins such as the ring of Brodgar and the Standing Stones of Stenness.  The Scandinavian influence remains strong with Norse place names, their language today is known as Norn and the islands have a rich folklore
Orkney Island Roots 2017-05-09 12:00:00Z 0

Gallipoli and South Canterbury

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Members of the Ashburton Rotary Club joined with members of the Rotary Club of Timaru for an excellent and topical ANZAC Day presentation about South Canterbury’s involvement in the  Gallipoli campaign given by Chris Rapley, Social History curator at the South Canterbury Museum.
Our national consciousness has grown over recent years as we remember those who gave their lives 102 years ago at Anzac Cove.
Gallipoli and South Canterbury Gilly Oppenheim 2017-04-25 12:00:00Z 0

Hands-on help for kids in a school in Zimbabwe

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Our guest speaker on Tuesday 11 April, Roxy Pitchford, inspired us with an account of her visit to Luhwade Primary School in southern Zimbabwe.  In this school a single sheet of paper is treasured, every square centimeter on both sides is used until there's no space left.  So many things that we take for granted are unfamiliar to them. There's no electricity, only basic classroom furniture, and very limited teaching equipment. 
The enthusiasm of the students, and the determination of the teachers working with such limited resources to give the children the best education they could, inspired Roxy to see what more she could do to help.
Hands-on help for kids in a school in Zimbabwe 2017-04-11 12:00:00Z 0

New on-Line Rotary e-Club launches

Linking water, sanitation and hygiene expertise from around the world to address the appalling plight of hundreds of millions of people who lack access to safe, clean water for drinking and washing; that's the purpose of newly-Chartered Rotary Club of e-WASH (Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene) based in Dunedin, New Zealand
The e-Club meets on-line at and has members from New Zealand, Africa, the United States, Canada and the United Arab Emirates.
New on-Line Rotary e-Club launches 2016-10-15 00:00:00Z 0


Take one passionate, determined Australasian Vocational Training Team, add backing from District 9980, throw in a Rotary Foundation global grant, and what do you get?
"Mindboggling” progress in Mongolia’s maternal health system – and hundreds of mothers’ and babies’ lives already being saved each year, thanks to a very special delivery: childbirth education.
The ground-breaking programme, however, almost didn’t come to pass; Rotary’s involvement in Mongolia was originally intended to centre on a water well project.

Helping out

Posted by Andrea Lord on Sep 27, 2016
One of the many jobs in which we get involved is helping people within our community.
One person we are currently helping has found her section and garden too big to handle.
The project is being carried out in stages; the first stage was to clear the overgrown garden and spray it.  We are working here on stage two: preparing the area for grass seed.
Helping out Andrea Lord 2016-09-27 00:00:00Z 0

Our Exchange student keeping in touch

For the past year Flora, our Rotary Youth Exchange student from Austria, has lived with Rotary families in Timaru and attended school in Timaru.  Flora is now back with her family in Austria and has written with her latest news.
(For information about Rotary's Youth Exchange programme click HERE.  For information about other Rotary Youth programmes click HERE.
Flora writes "I finally settled back into my old life in Austria. My summer holidays are over now and school started three weeks ago. It is quite hard for me right now to catch up with everything they learned last year at school. Next week I am going on a school trip to Rome, I am really excited for that.
Our Exchange student keeping in touch John Barton 2016-09-27 00:00:00Z 0

Meet President Anne

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The Rotary Club of Timaru’s new President, Anne Carnie, is Timaru born and bred, an ex-pupil of Timaru Girls High School.

Anne’s work has always involved assisting people in the community including being a dental receptionist and working in the Labour and Social Welfare Departments.  For the past twenty years Anne has been a nationwide Health and Disability Advocate, empowering people in the community to achieve better health outcomes.
Meet President Anne John Barton 2016-08-09 00:00:00Z 0

Help's on the way for Fijian schools

Posted by John Barton
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While a day off school might sound like a treat for some kids, having your classroom and all your school equipment destroyed is another matter altogether.
When Cyclone Winston stuck Fiji in February this year the Islands to the east of Viti Levu were especially badly affected. Primary schools on these islands were devastated, roofs lifted off and the contents blown away or destroyed.
Help's on the way for Fijian schools John Barton 2016-07-27 00:00:00Z 0

Youth Exchange Student, Flora's, latest newsletter

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This Month (April) was amazing! We finally had the north island tour and I loved every minute of it.  
The beginning of the month was a little bit boring everyone was getting tired of school and we all just wanted to have our holidays. One weekend I watched my host brother's first rugby game and later watched rugby again with my friend. On Sunday I played soccer, unfortunately we lost.
The next weekend Sophie finally came up from Cromwell. She had the pleasure to watch me playing soccer again and we lost again. It was fun with her and we just prepared for the north Island. I showed her the beautiful Timaru.
Youth Exchange Student, Flora's, latest newsletter John Barton 2016-05-16 00:00:00Z 0

Otago Youth Adventure Trust programme 2016-17

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In the summer months, (January-April 2017), our volunteers will commence our 31st season of running these low cost trips in some of the most beautiful and famous areas of Otago, Southland and Fiordland.
Some 18,500 people (mostly middle-aged) from New Zealand, Australia and further afield have joined our trips.  We offer a wide variety of experiences, from three-five days hiking trips, to well planned cycle trails and more relaxed lodge based trips, which offer day hikes to see some magnificent sights. Bookings are now open ...
Otago Youth Adventure Trust programme 2016-17 John Barton 2016-05-15 00:00:00Z 0

People with disabilities make their own music

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Music has been an important part of leading an ordinary life for students at the Music School for Children With Disabilities in Honor of Paul Harris in Lublin, Poland. Founded by Rotary members, the school serves 20 students with various disabilities, including Down syndrome, autism, and visual impairments. The Rotary Club of Lublin-Centrum-Maria Curie-Sklodowska has provided funding with help from Rotary Foundation Matching Grants and the Henryk Wieniawski Musical Society, which houses the school.
After their son Mateusz was born with underdeveloped eyes, Mariusz and Joanna Kania looked for ways to help him be active. When he showed an aptitude for music, they looked for a teacher and were thrilled to find the Paul Harris music school.
People with disabilities make their own music 2015-05-01 00:00:00Z 0

Finding Safe Haven

For years, Angalia Bianca had slept in abandoned buildings throughout Chicago. She stole. She did drugs. She spent time in and out of jail for forgery, theft, trespassing, and possession of narcotics. But after she landed in prison for the seventh time, something changed -- Bianca knew she wanted a better life. She just didn’t know how to make it happen.
After serving her time, Bianca sought help from a local homeless organization, A Safe Haven, and moved to its shelter in the Rogers Park neighborhood. Bianca followed the program closely -- she attended all the required meetings, passed drug tests, and volunteered at every opportunity.
Finding Safe Haven 2015-05-01 00:00:00Z 0

Saving lives in Ghana

What is it like taking a large team to Africa?  It has probably been one of the most rewarding experiences in my life. In mid February, I began leading Rotary members from all over the East Coast of the United States through Ghana. I’ve tried to give the team a warm Ghanaian welcome like I’ve received on my earlier trips. A large trip is a real blessing because each person sees Ghana and our work in a different way.

A highlight for the team was greeting the chief of Sagadugu. The team got excited about buying goats and food for children in the villages where I support eight churches. It was good to see the pastors of most of the eight churches, and I had to explain that we were just passing through on our way to Bolgatanga.
Saving lives in Ghana 2015-05-01 00:00:00Z 0

India celebrates three years without polio

Throughout India and around the world, Rotary clubs are celebrating a major milestone: India has gone three years without a new case of polio. The last reported case was a two-year-old girl in West Bengal on 13 January 2011. To mark this historic triumph, Rotary clubs illuminated landmarks and iconic structures throughout the country with four simple but powerful words, "India is polio free."
The three-year achievement sets the stage for polio-free certification of the entire Southeast Asia region by the World Health Organization. The Indian government also plans to convene a polio summit in February to commemorate this victory in the global effort to eradicate polio.
India celebrates three years without polio 2014-02-26 00:00:00Z 0