Posted by Mark Ellis AM
Theme for this month FEBRUARY – Peace and conflict prevention /resolution
Hi all. Hopefully everyone is faring well in this environment. We are all in a semi isolation type of world now. I must wear full PEP with mask and goggles. However, the seriousness of the situation came home when a Sydney Ophthalmologist and friend died of Delta Covid on Sunday. The first doctor to die in Wuhan from COVID was an ophthalmologist as well.
Please don’t forget that I am still working as an ophthalmologist and have my patients to consider. Some members seem to think I have the time to drop tools and sprint to their every whim.
World statistics would seem to suggest that the cases are slowly decreasing in numbers as the epidemic becomes endemic. My staff tell me that a lot of schoolchildren are testing positive to the Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) with no symptoms, so this is an interesting development. So, it is understandable if some of our members are shy of coming to face to face meetings on the Tuesday nights at Kooyong Tennis Club. The club itself is doing all its best to weather this “storm” and give good service.  
I plan to continue the face to face meetings especially considering the need to induct new members this month, in particular Mr Garfield Lee tomorrow night. If members are intending NOT to come, could they please inform Rod Smith, our Club Director. We do have to have a certain number come to make the meetings financially viable. Don’t forget that our price to go to the CLUB Meeting will be set at $42.00, with tomorrow the first day of the new fee.
The Board met last Tuesday – some of the issues
Changeover Date – We have set the date for our Changeover as June 14th. Please place this date in your diaries for the big social event on our calendar.
Mental Health Golf Day – On May 24th is the inaugural Kingston Heath Golf Day set up by our member Elizabeth Dumonic with proceedings going to Australian Rotary Health. We as a club really need to get behind her and support this. I thank the committee formed to assist Elizabeth realise her dream. The flyer should be out soon, and the day is aimed at corporate as well as Rotarians, so please spruik the event.
Afghan Music Event – Through David Fallick’s contacts, the Board has decided to consider backing the efforts of the Fred Smith Afghan Fund. In 2022, Australian diplomat, songwriter and author Fred Smith will be playing a series of concerts to help Australians make sense of our involvement in Afghanistan. You will remember that Fred has presented to the club already. These shows will be an opportunity to welcome the over 4000 people recently evacuated to Australia from Afghanistan, and to recognize the efforts of Australian Defence Force members and public servants who helped get them out.
Our club is presently looking for members to be involved in organizing this Melbourne arm of the concert tour most likely for Aug 26th to coincide with the anniversary of the Kabul evacuation. Please ask David or Mark Howlett for information.
Foundation Glenferrie’s Annual Giving - The Rotary Club of Glenferrie Club’s Foundation contribution was made to DG Dale on his visit on 14 December. In the meantime, RC Glenferrie continues to be a major contributor to Foundation in relation to Club Giving per capita, but also since the latter part of 2021, we are now on the rise regarding Personal Giving with the increase in our Paul Harris Society membership from 2 members to now 5. Thanks to Cheryl and now Charles Tran for all their input.
District Conference – Albury 22 to 24th April.  Please consider coming especially the new members, since this is best way to gain insight into the immense exciting world of Rotary. Several members have booked already including your president, treasurer and secretary, so please join us. On the Friday night we have booked a restaurant for the club in the main street, so please let us know who is coming so we can share the details.
Rotary leadership learning and development – There is so much to Rotary that you will miss if you just come as a “knife and forker” and attend the occasional Farmer’s Market. Apart from thanks and a continued encouragement to all for the Farmer’s Market, I encourage everyone to look at the “My Rotary”, District 9800 Learning and Development and the District 9800 Website (gaining access via Member’s resources on our Glenferrie Website.). There is a Rotary Leadership Institute that conducts very well resourced and researched leadership courses. I have asked for the dates but awaiting a reply.
Proposed Cluster Reshuffle – Totally out of the blue there is a move to unite our Riverside Cluster (Hawthorn, Kew and Glenferrie) with the Rotary Club Of Port Melbourne. There has been little consultation and there has been no reason given for the benefits of this merger. I have always stated that if the cluster was to merge, we should merge with the Eastside Cluster in which we not only have a lot in common, but also have conducted successful events as in the Rotary 100 playground project. There has only been one meeting about this which was run during a morning and which none of the Riverside Presidents were able to attend because of work commitments. I have a cluster meeting on Wednesday and hope to know more. My emails have gone unanswered so far. Not very democratic!!
Reminds me of the words from Martin Luther King Jr. – “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”