Rotary Club of Oak Bay
Bulletin, 4 February, 2020
By Renate MacKenzie
 
 
Oak Bay Rotary Meeting Minutes – February 4, 2020   
 
President Joan introduced today’s meeting with this month’s Rotary theme, “Peace Building and Conflict Prevention” – followed by “O Canada” 
 
Wynn Taylor – explained the February 2nd date significance and followed this with a traditional Candlemas invocation.
 
Atam Uppal – introduced today’s guests:
• Katerina Kurz and Megan Johnson 
• Naida Hyde
• Farhad Rohani
 
Eugen Bannerman – introduced the two exchange students:  Megan Johnson and Katerina Kurz 
Katerina left her home in Metchosin to experience a year in Naantali, Finland.  Her highlights included living with 3 different host families, getting immersed in the Finnish language and culture such as the social aspects of the Sauna at all times of the year, being part of the theatre, taking part of a Scouts group with 8 girls and sailing with her Finnish friends.  She enjoyed hosting a visit of her Finnish friends and hopes to return there in the future.
Megan departed Victoria for a year, outbound to reside in the small city of Ayasia, Japan.  Her highlights included residing with 4 host families, she related how cultural shock set in when she joined her 2nd host family with 10 family members.  Although there were 9 other exchange students hosted in the greater area, friends were important as few others spoke English and she gained fluency in Japanese.  Other experiences such as visiting cultural monuments, temples & shrines, seeing Kyoto in the fall, taking in train travel to be by the ocean, and the best highlight of skiing, were identified.  
 
Adam Farquharson thanked our speakers and presented them with a Rotary Mug and Note Pad.  Doris Lewis was also thanked for assisting in bringing and returning Katerina and Megan from Esquimalt High School.
 
President Joan applauded: 
Krista Voitchovsky for helping her host the Oak Bay Interact Club during their Wednesday breakfast and for assisting with getting the goodies in to the Youth Centre in the pouring rain! 
Peter Lawrie for his participation to report out to the Executive for the International Committee’s successful achievement in obtaining a $2,000 District Grant which is matched to become $4,000.  This will go to the Rwanda women’s initiative to create a tailoring workshop.  
Krista and Peter were gifted with a Rotary Note Pad/Pen set.
 
President Joan also commented on the current work Peter Lawrie and Janet Power are organizing with RYLA and Adventures in Citizenship, interviews starting on February 11th.
 
Ali Edgell – explained the EREY Wine Raffle 1) We’re to bring 1 bottle of wine ($15 or more) to Ali this month.  2) We can then purchase a raffle ticket for $35 and this becomes our donation to the Rotary Foundation Annual Fund which benefits our club when we are requesting matching grant funds.  
1st Prize:  The entire wine collection!
2nd Prize:  $75 Deep Cove Chalet Gift Certificate
3rd Prize:  3 bottles of Sea Cider products.
 
Ceci Diemecke – described upcoming projects located in Mexico:   1) Niltepec, Oaxaca rebuilding after an earthquake including 6 homes and a Community Kitchen.   2) Zinacantan, Chiapas improving on greater community resources, increasing women’s initiatives and self sufficiency working with textiles.  
Ceci and Pablo will be visiting this March and encouraged Rotarians to join them, suggesting additional time to visit Sn. Cristobal de las Casas or Monte Alban pyramids!
 
Lorna Curtis and Sonja Yli-Kahila – provided a comprehensive update on the Greater Victoria Food Rescue Project:  
Sonja explained the impact of food rescue is being realized with greater amounts, reaching 4,550 Kg each day with only 8% fresh food is composted.  Through the collaboration of Victoria Foundation, Rotary Clubs of Victoria and local Grocers, the Mustard Seed Street Church expends up to $700,000 to operate this venture and need to raise funds.  
Lorna highlighted the stories that emerge from this program and promoted the upcoming Island Food Caring Fundraising campaign.  Rotarians are needed to sign up for a 2 hour shift to serve coffee and provide information to start the campaign on February 29th 11AM to 3PM.  Please let Lorna know if you can volunteer 11-1 or 1-3.
 
Alyx Valdal – as Celebrations Master Alyx kept to the international/travel theme, we learned Mandarin for ‘Happy New Year’, who consumed the most turkey meat per capita (Israel), the number of Rotarian Clubs internationally and the most efficient way to pack for travel (rolling not folding) as part other ways to share our loonies & toonies!
Jack Petrie won the 50/50 draw…white marble only and he donated his winnings!
 
President Joan reminded us next Tuesday involves mandatory Youth Protection Training and will be located at Oak Bay Recreation Centre (not OBBH) and Atam Uppal won the Mystery draw of a $20 Purdy’s gift certificate.  
 
A humorous video clip of babies’ reactions to ice cream brought smiles and closed our meeting.
 
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