YMCA Centre for Life

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One of Rotary's priority is to leave a legacy in the community and the Rotary Club of Belleville's support of the YMCA Centre for Life represents what Rotary stands for.  President Peter Malone was pleased to present the 2nd installment of the Club's three year commitment, this year's share being $30,000 to Dave Allen, CEO and members of the campaign leadership team at the President's Night event on June 13th, hosted by Shannon and Marida Neely.  Pictured here are Doug Peterson, David Allen, Kristin Crowe, Peter Malone, Cassandra Bonn and Collin Myers, an example of how Rotarians seek out to do incredible work and ensure all the dots are connected for successful initiatives such as this. 
President Peter said it is an exciting project for our club and brings new vitality to our membership. Our club’s pledge to the YMCA Centre for Life will help create a much-needed, deep-community facility in the west end of Belleville. With its five partner agencies, this facility will enhance health, education, support, and fellowship to so many, especially our youth. The Rotary Club of Belleville understands the long-term impact the YMCA Centre for Life will have on our growing community’s health.
In accepting this cheque, Dave Allen thanked all those involved in the work of fundraising for the YMCA Centre for Life.  Over $6 million has been raised todate and there will be a shovel in the ground this summer.  This centre will impact our community for years to come and will change the lifestyle of many. The new YMCA Centre for Life represents an uplifting of our spirits and offers hope of a new and better tomorrow for our community. A place where everyone is welcome, where diversity is celebrated and social inclusion is the cornerstone of our foundation, where people will meet new friends, where young and old, families and individuals alike, and our most vulnerable, including those with a developmental disability, will feel they are accepted and belong.
YMCA Centre for Life David Allen 2024-06-13 04:00:00Z 0

President's Night

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WASN'T THAT A PARTY?!  June 13th was an evening to recognize Rotary President Peter Malone, surrounded by friends, colleagues, guests and of course, Suzanne, his spouse who has been there for him during his year as Rotary President, listening to his "outside the box" suggestions and offering wise counsel.  Sporting a tee-shirt of The Who in the spirit of the British Invasion theme, Peter had to explain to some of the younger generation who The Who were.   He proudly made cheque presentations to the Children's Foundation and the YMCA Centre for Life (see separate stories on these presentations).  Peter's first task was to oversee who would win the prize for the best British Invasion costume and without a doubt, Dr. Ruth Mathieson won hands down with second and third prize going to Shannon Neely and Kim McKinney.
Peter went on to present "awards" to those who have supported him and the Rotary Club this past year.  The Rosalie Cup of Tea award went to Vice-President Tracey Vandervoort for her laid back personality in focusing on what needed to be done, calmly.  The Queen and Country Award went to Collin Myers for getting involved early on in the Rotary Refresh project and having to part with the toast to the Queen.  The Queen's Plate will find a special spot in his home or office.  The Queen Mother Award went to Past President Tracy Bray for making sure everyone else was okay.  Her big heart was ever present.  Host and hostess with the mostes went to Shannon and Marida for all their hospitality in hosting the President's Night.  The Big Ben Award was given to Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler who was always on time, organized and welcoming to everyone.  She kept the Board on track with Big Ben accuracy and played a pivotal role for the Club.  She also earned a Warrior Pin.
Peter thanked the Board of Directors for creating momentum that will build going forward.  To all the Committee Chairs who busily carry on, often behind the scenes, but an integral part of the overall running of the Club.  Michael Summers and his photography and technical support at every meeting and Paul Ferguson for his original and captivating emails, nudging the membership along.
The highlight of the evening may have been Rotarian Kim McKinney's jump in the pool, spontaneous for sure or at least based on the surprise on everyone's face, it was not planned except by Kim.  And Suzanne shared her part in the jokes that Peter has shared all year.  This time last year she was in Toronto and bought Peter a Book of Dad Jokes as a Father's Day gift.  Well, now you know the rest of the story.
President's Night Peter Malone 2024-06-13 04:00:00Z 0

The Children's Foundation

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In the Rotary Year 1999-2000 Rotarian Wolf Tausendfreund suggested a Golf Tournament as a major fundraising event for the Club and Bob Clute stepped up to chair this event.  The priority was to include children and it was agreed from the start that 10% of net revenue would go to the Hastings County Children's Foundation for Kids in Care for educational bursaries.  The first event took place in July 2003.  With a great team of volunteers including Ken Wheeler, Bernie Ouellet, Vince Lynch, the late Bob Michaud, Rotary Loves Kids was born!  Twenty-one years later and the event is going strong for the Rotary Club of Belleville.
Executive Director of the Children's Foundation Melanie Cressman recently sent a letter to the Board of Directors of the Rotary Club expressing their gratitude for the support over the years.  Last year alone they were able to support over 1500 children and youth, but 2023 marked a significant increase in the number of children and youth supported through the Foundation's core program.  The mission of the Children's Foundation provides and funds programs aimed at ensuring all children and youth in Hastings, Northumberland and Prince Edward Counties have social and physical opportunities to explore, learn, play and thrive.  Their six (6) core programs are:
  • Playing for Keeps - helps cover the registration fees of sports and other activities
  • Camps of Hope - subsidizes the registration fees for camps
  • Strive to Thrive - focuses on mental health supports and therapy programs for youth
  • Reach for Success - supports youth as they transition from care to independent living
  • Keep Baby Safe - supplies cribs, mattresses and car seats to ensure the safety of an infant
  • Holiday Angel Tree - ensures that marginalized families can celebrate with gifts and good food over the Christmas holidays
A recent strategic planning process continues the Children's Foundation alignment with the Rotary Club of Belleville's area of focus of supporting education.  At the June 13th President's Night, Rotary President Peter Malone presented a cheque for $5,000 to the Children's Foundation to continue the Club's support of the work the organization does for children and youth in our community.  Pictured are Cassandra Bonn, Melanie Cressman and Peter Malone.
The Children's Foundation Melanie Cressman 2024-06-13 04:00:00Z 0

St. Lawrence College Bursary Recipient

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Kaycie Brant is a mature, first-generation, student from Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, who recently graduated as the valedictorian of St Lawrence College Kingston in 2023. Kaycie has since started her journey at Royal Roads University in the Bachelor of Arts in Justice Studies program with future plans of attending the Queen's University Law program. Kaycie continues to display her commitment to the community with volunteer positions at the Community Spirit Bingo on behalf of Ryandale Transitional Housing, and the Indigenous Education Committee with the Limestone District School Board. Kaycie was also the successful recipient of the Donald Larry Maracle Integrity Scholarship organized by the Maracle family in memory of their late father; "Larry is remembered as a loving husband and father who valued family, friends, community, hard work and education", and Kaycie is proud of this achievement as she shares the same values. Kaycie has shown resiliency, professionalism, academic ability, humanitarianism, and dedication to future career goals and community development. 
A message from Kaycie: "When I began my educational path I was overwhelmed, intimidated, and fearful of failure; however, I did not realize how resilient I was, and how community involvement would provide me with a solid foundation to support my professional development. I encourage anyone considering post-secondary education to take that leap of faith regardless of the barriers you face because your community will provide you with the tools to support your growth. I am very grateful for community partners such as the Rotary Club who have believed in me and have invested in my education because they inspire me to keep going." 
Kaycie received her award from the Cataraque-Kingston Rotary Club at a recent presentation.
St. Lawrence College Bursary Recipient 2024-06-08 04:00:00Z 0

Ontario Provincial Music Festival

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Jo-Anne Wheeler, Provincial Coordinator for the 2024 Quinte Rotary Music Festival was pleased to advise that the results are in for the participants who went on to the Ontario Provincial Music Festival from the Quinte Rotary Music Festival.   These music students were recommended by the QRMF adjudicators to compete at the Provincials “virtually”.  We should be proud of each and every one of them!

Classical Piano - Level 2: Ethan Guan
Classical Piano - Live 4: Alkina Feng, who received “Honourable Mention with Distinction”
Classical Woodwinds - Level 1: Annika Hirt, who received “1st Place”
Classical Woodwinds - Level 2: William Charles Gauthier, who received "3rd Place”
Classical Voice - Level 2: Alkina Feng, who received “Honourable Mention with Distinction”
Classical Voice - Level 3: Elizabeth Black
Classical Voice - Level 3: Aubrey Demianchuk
Classical Voice - Level 5: Emma Colby, who received “3rd Place”
Classical Voice - Level 5: Braelyn Bird
Small Ensembles - Centennial Secondary School, who received "1st Place"
Musical Theatre - Primary Level: Alkina Feng

Next up - the Live Festival Competitions, which take place in mid-June.

Ontario Provincial Music Festival Jo-Anne Wheeler 2024-06-06 04:00:00Z 0

Lakehead University Bursary Recipient

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Birgit Wartenberg, Chair of the IPPC, shared some good news about a recent bursary presentation to Tristen Brown, a 2024 recipient from Lakehead University.  The presentation was made by the Rotary Club of Lakehead.  Tristen is a member of the Cree First Nation from Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation, located near Grande Prairie, Alberta.  Currently, Tristen is pursuing his Ph.D in Civil Engineering at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, where his journey is marked by dedication, distinction and a profound commitment to serving his community.  He is investigating an innovative housing solution for northern Indigenous communities across Canada through collaboration with a dedicated research group.  Tristen is leading efforts to develop a cost-effective, resilient modular housing solution that integrates traditional Indigenous practices.  His research has accumulated recognition and support from the Rotary Club of Belleville, which has generously awarded him the Indigenous Professional Development Bursary.  This financial assistance will help support Tristen's academic pursuits and enable him to focus on his research without undue financial burden.  He greatly appreciates the Rotary Club for their unwavering support.  Tristen is dedicated to collaborating with Indigenous-owned companies to implement his research findings in real-world settings.  His primary goal is to make a substantial difference in the lives of Indigenous communities, ensuring access to safe, sustainable housing that reflects their cultural identity and values.
Lakehead University Bursary Recipient Birgit Wartenberg 2024-05-27 04:00:00Z 0

Youth in Rotary

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Rotarian John Smale, Chair of the Rotary Club of Belleville's Youth Leadership and Bursaries Committee, was pleased to introduce speakers today with a focus on youth, one of the five Rotary Avenues of Service.  Pictured L to R:  Rotarian Jared Bellemare, John Smale, Ella Bellemare, President Peter Malone, PP Sam Brady, District Rep Rob Pope, Zoya and Piper.
Ella Bellemare aka Bella Bellemare, daughter of Rotarian Jared Bellemare attended the Rotary Youth Leadership Symposium held in the spring this year.  The symposium was held at the Ganaraska Forest Centre, a 3 night, 4 day experience geared toward youth between the ages of 16 - 20.  An inspiring program that offers workshops in conflict resolution, diversity, equity and inclusivity, leadership, group dynamics, public speaking, outdoor survival and more.  The program empowers young leaders to develop new skills and take action.  The Rotary Club of Belleville supports the nomination and provides payment of the registration fee and ensures transportation to and from the camp.  Ella said she made new friends and connections and learned more about teamwork and trust.  Attending the symposium provided an opportunity to experience new things, build confidence (she admitted to being reserved) and engage in conversations with people she had never met before.  Ella learned about a project that Rotary was involved with in the Dominican Republic, providing hygiene products to young girls so they would not miss important time at school.  Ella has participated in other Rotary activities such as Camp Merrywood and will be attending Trent University in the Fall, studying law and sociology and continuing to support Rotary's work whenever she can.  Thanked by a very proud father, Jared Bellemare.
Next up was Rob Pope, currently an Assistant District Governor and involved with the Rotary Youth Exchange Program for 5 years.   The Rotary Youth Exchange started in 1929 in Europe and it was through a chance meeting in Europe of Bill MacKay Snr. and a South African Rotarian who help start the program here.  The first exchange was in 1972-72 when Wilf Wilkinson was District Governor and our own Rotarian, Ian Acton, was the first exchange student.  The objectives of the program are to foster international goodwill and understanding, enable students to study in a new
environment, learn a new language, meet and live with people in a different country, culture, act as an ambassador for Canada, their city/town, sponsoring Rotary Club, develop skills and confidence to last a lifetime.  The program is open to students 16 - 17 years of age, in Grade 11 or 12.  It is a 10 or 11 month exchange and students must attend Rotary Club meetings and service projects.  The student is hosted by the Rotary Club, lives with 3 or 4 host families.  There are financial costs for the students/parents.  Host families provide meals, reasonable transportation for after school activities, help the student learn the language and culture of their chosen country, include the student on family outings.  The sponsoring Rotary Club covers orientation and mandatory trips @ $1,500, a monthly allowance of $150, transportation pass, meals associated with Rotary meetings and events and Christmas and birthday presents.  The District 7070 Youth Exchange Committee is co-chaired by Trevor Hagerman and Beth Selby, inbound co-ordinator is Shelley Hagerman and district reps are Rob Pope, Sonja Chouljian, Diego Galbiati.
Two outbound students, Zoya Wannamaker, hosted by the Rotary Club of Trenton and Piper Godden, hosted by the Rotary Club of Campbellford  shared their enthusiasm for applying to be Rotary Exchange Students and their exchange destinations -- Zoya to Warsaw in Poland and Piper to Randers, Denmark.  Both are very excited and hope to be on their way in August.  Past President Sam Brady thanked Rob and both Zoya and Piper, a host parent himself who is a strong supporter of the program.  We need more members to be involved to be host families, to spend time with the students, to support a host family.  Our Club has hosted 9 Rotary Exchange Students and Sam and his family have made lifelong friends and learned new parenting skills and is actively encouraging the Rotary Club of Belleville to re-invigorate the program in our community.
Youth in Rotary John Smale - Chair Youth Service 2024-05-23 04:00:00Z 0

Loyalist College

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As we recognize education week, Dianne Spencer was very pleased to introduce the guest speaker at Rotary Club of Belleville, Mark Kirkpatrick, President and CEO of Loyalist College.  Mark joined the Loyalist team in 2005 as Director of Information Technology after working in manufacturing, insurance and financial service sectors.  In this role, Mark modernized the College's Information Technology Department and implemented a campus wide IT infrastructure to innovate and bring change across the college.  As Director of Facilities and then Senior Director of Infrastructure, Mark played a key role in planning the redevelopment of the campus inside and out.  In 2020 he joined the senior leadership team as Senior VP Corporate Services and CFO.  During the pandemic, Mark led the work at Loyalist to open the college facilities to accommodate COVID vaccinations for 50,000 individuals, people from our communities.  Mark became the 6th President and CEO of Loyalist College in March 2023.  Since then the changes at Loyalist have continued and they are remarkable, but it's not just about buildings.  It's about people and programs.  Loyalist is 47 years young this year and continues to provide opportunities for people of all ages to learn, grow and discover new pathways to develop their careers.  Mark Kirkpatrick has been an integral part of that over the past two decades and we look forward to hearing about what's going on today and what is next.
Mark Kirkpatrick's power point was entitled Loyalist College Moving Forward and Mark started off by sharing numbers.  Gross Revenue FY 23/24 $172 million.  Capital Investment FY 23/24 $40 million.  Number of employees 1000+.  Economic Impact Study for FY 21/22 on the region is $433.3 million, representing about 5,579 jobs supported or 3.6% of regional GDP.  Student spending in the region added $11.5 million in economic benefit.  Of this, $6.5 million is attributable to international students.  Over 7,000 students are enrolled across all locations and students are from over 40 different countries.  Port Hope campus is 21,500 sq. ft and Belleville campus is 750,000 sq. ft with over 600 residence beds (and more to come).  Loyalist College serves the communities of Lennox & Addington, Hastings, Prince Edward and Northumberland Counties with locations in Tyendinaga, Belleville, Bancroft, Port Hope and Toronto.
Loyalist College believes every student in our community has the right to a first class post-secondary education in a first class facility taught by first class faculty with first class services and without the need to travel to a major city.  Every business deserves access to first class workforce development and applied research opportunities to expand their operations.  This support should come from a post secondary institution within their communities, one that understands their unique needs because the college is here.
Mark spoke about the Community Speaker Series introduced at the College.  For $10 people can hear well-known speakers on a variety of interesting topics and the events are sold out!  Community Integration is partnering with local organizations such as the Belleville Senators, the Santa Claus Parade, cultural events on campus and in the community, military connections, working with local industries to upskill and teach skills to enhance local opportunities to expand, research with local business to help support the needs in the community, introducing an RN program so that students who train here will stay here.  Program such as Elevate Plus are available to people who need help to enter the workforce, teaching them jobs skills that guarantee job prospects.  This year donor-supported bursaries and scholarships were given to 435 students with a value of $601,760, last year 217 students received awards with a value of $347,825.
The campus is evolving with a new outdoor facade and gym, academic teams, a new Spa (Unwind), Maker Space and a new Health and Wellness space, culinary updates, Nourish Restaurant.  All in all, Mark bragged about having a great job and we can see why!  Mark was thanked by Rotarian Cristina Cadavid, a proud Loyalist College grad (pictured here with Mark Kirkpatrick).
Loyalist College President Mark Kirkpatrick 2024-05-09 04:00:00Z 0

Community Trees 2024

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On May 4th the City of Belleville Green Task Force and its partners Rotary Loves Trees and Quinte Conservation hosted Community Trees 2024.  At this event, 2,000 tree seedlings were provided free of charge to some 400 Belleville residents eager to plant trees to beautify their properties and help protect and improve the environment.  This annual event has become very popular and well attended each year.  Pictured here are Rotarians Michael Stiff and Carmela Ruberto.
Community Trees 2024 Terry Thomas 2024-05-04 04:00:00Z 0

Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup

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The 4th Annual Rotary ‘GREAT LAKES WATERSHED CLEANUP’ is fast approaching. On Saturday April 27, 2024, thousands of Rotarians & Non-Rotarians alike, on both sides of the Canadian and U.S. border will roll up their sleeves to collect refuse along the shoreline, and innumerable waterway tributaries to the Great Lakes basin. This is a great example of ‘ROTARY IN ACTION’ and brings considerable community attention to the importance of ‘ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY.’ Join us for our ‘ROTARY DAY OF SERVICE’ – All Welcome – Invite family, friends, and anyone else who would enjoy the event.
Locally, this year's event will be held on Saturday, April 27th from 10 a.m. to noon (rain date is May 4th).  Meet at East Zwick's Island Park on Mary Street (dog park parking lot).  All Rotarians and families are invited to take part in this amazing environmental initiative.  Please contact Samantha Reid, Rotarian at samreid114@gmail.com for more information.
Great Lakes Watershed Cleanup 2024-04-27 04:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow Presentations

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The Paul Harris Fellow recognition was established in 1956 and is named after Rotary's founder, Paul Harris, a Chicago lawyer who started Rotary International with three business associates in 1905.  A Paul Harris Fellow is the highest form of recognition that a Rotary Club can bestow on a Rotarian who has made outstanding contributions to the Club, community and the world.  It acknowledges individuals who make significant contributions to the Rotary Foundation and who share in the spirit of Service Above Self.  The Paul Harris recipient goes above and beyond.  Today, President Peter has the honour and pleasure of recognizing three incredible individuals from within the Rotary Club of Belleville who have done exactly that.  Pictured here with Garth Stephanson and Dave Albert
The Rotary Club of Belleville recognizes two Past Presidents for the anniversary of 50 years of Rotary service.
Past President Bob Burns joined Rotary in January 1973, a very fine year as it is the year that Sunderland AFC (as underdogs) went on to beat Leeds United and take the FA Cup.  This would be the very year that Bob Ord was President of our Club, a 60 year Paul Harris Fellow recognized earlier this year.  Bob Burns was the club's youngest President during the 1978-1979 Rotary Year just 5 years after joining Rotary. Bob said he met a lot of great friends through Rotary and admires the Club for all the work they do.  He made special mention of the Satellite evening meeting group as he was very involved.
Past President Garth Stephanson joined Rotary in January 1974 when Past President Kristin Crowe's father was President.  Some people may know that Garth and Bob were room mates at some point -- wouldn't you love to be a fly on that wall.  Garth followed Bob Burns as Club President the 1979-1980 year.  Garth was invited to join Rotary by Neil Britton who is here today as a thank you from Garth.  When Garth joined, he was surrounded by members older and wiser, but now 50 years later, recognizes and thanks all Rotarians for the work they do.
Dave Albert joined Rotary a few years later in 1987.  Best known over a lot of years, Dave has been and continues in a critical Club role as head cook and magical organizer in the infamous kitchen of Camp Merrywood.  Dave has faced some of the greatest challenges known to any Rotarian and that is teaching and turning the likes of Bernie Ouellet, Wayne Dewe and Doug Peterson into finely tuned cooking machines.  Every year they come up with nutritious and tasty meals for thousands of Belleville Rotarians over the years.  If you haven't tasted this fine food fare, Peter urges you to do so.  Dave said Rotary was always a family to him.  Camp Merrywood has grown over the years with a great group of people digging in and getting the work done every year.  He did point out that he has actually been demoted in the kitchen by Bernie and Wayne who have taken over.  Dave just goes with the flow.
Paul Harris Fellow Presentations President Peter Malone 2024-04-25 04:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk

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Past President Kelly McKinney was pleased to introduce his older brother Kim to the lunch meeting of the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Who is Kim McKinney you ask?  From a family of seven children, it was sometimes difficult to tell everyone apart, especially Kim and Tim who are identical twins.  But Kelly described Kim as being kind, an adventurer and leader, distinguished and wise.  We got a sense of competitiveness in the family and a great sense of humour.
Kim has attended a lot of meetings and events in the past year that he described as an amazing year, getting involved in many aspects of Rotary.  Rotary is about Service Above Self and bringing a diverse background of people together to work on projects and initiatives that improve life for others.  He has been involved in Rotary tree planting, Camp Merrywood and Porchfest.  Kim was impressed with the budget process for the Club and the professional way the finances were addressed by the committee.  He is sure that the Rotary Club of Belleville is in good hands.  Kim passed around a family book that was done ten years ago, an amazing piece of history to put together.  Kim's mom is 89 and living at Quinte Gardens, well blessed with visits from her 7 children and 21 grandchildren.  She is getting great care there and doing well.  Kim and his wife Nancy have three children, all studying in their chosen fields of environmental studies and industrial design.  The family lived in Oakville, but returned to Belleville in 2020, expedited by COVID and having to adapt to new ways of marketing and doing business. 
We were entertained by a remote interview Kim set up with Mr. Chat, providing information on the real estate business or what could be interpreted as annoying real estate terms when it comes to listing a piece of property.  Unique could mean difficult to sell.  Cozy could mean small or cramped.  Charming, outdated or in need of serious renovations.  Nestled could mean a secluded location or a location next to a noisy construction site.  All in good fun! 
Past President Sam Brady thanked Kim for an engaging classification talk and for all that he does in the community.  We are indeed fortunate to have the McKinney family among us.
Classification Talk Kim McKinney 2024-04-25 04:00:00Z 0

Belleville Chamber of Commerce

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Rotarian Yakov Sobolev introduced CEO Jill Raycroft of the Belleville Chamber of Commerce as the lunch speaker at the Rotary Club of Belleville.  With a combination of 20+ years in the post-secondary education sector and 30+ years volunteering for various causes, Jill brings a dynamic blend of experience and education to serving the community she loves and lives in.  Following a 17 year career at Loyalist College, going back to school for her MBA, raising two children, running for Mayor in 2014 and volunteering with numerous committees and organizations, she finally found her place in the community with the Belleville Chamber of Commerce in 2017.
The Chamber helps business prosper, connect and share.  Through the strength of the Chamber network across the country, organizations grow and prosper with membership being as diverse as the organizations who join.  The Chamber connects members to each other and the community, representing them at all levels of government, municipal, provincial and federal.  The Chamber shares the influence of their voice to impact change for the communities they serve.  The Chamber is celebrating 160 years in 2024, was accredited in 2020.  They are governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, 15 in number, and operate by the Board Trade Act, Part II.
The membership is 500+ strong and is well balanced with professional services, building and renovation, shopping and specialty retail, food and drink, social services and not-for-profit, arts, entertainment and recreation, advertising, publishing and promotion, property sales, development and services, healthcare and many more.  The benefits of belonging include doing business with those they know and  trust as well as networking opportunities and information that keeps you up-to-date on Chamber events, member news and programs of interest.
2019 was the transformation year, re-branding, coming up with new ways to do things.  The plan was to reap the rewards in 2020, but then along came a pandemic and dollars were needed to support small business as it became evident how vital the businesses were and how important it was to recognize the people around the businesses.  The Annual President's Dinner became an opportunity to celebrate the members by presenting Cornerstone Awards, Life Achievement awards and presenting a Key To The Cabin, the Rotary Club of Belleville being the first, celebrating 100 years of working together on events such as the Waterfront Festival, Hometown Hockey, Santa Claus Parade, Family FUNfest and Touch-a-Truck.  Jill is looking forward to how the Chamber and Rotary might realign as partners with intention for the "betterment of the community" as it was resolved to do back in 1923.  Many thanks from Jill to Rotary for their audience, for always aspiring to do more and to look at avenues to stay connected in the future.
Belleville Chamber of Commerce Jill Raycroft - CEO 2024-04-11 04:00:00Z 0

Literacy Committee Update

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When Wilf Wilkinson was Rotary International President in 2007/2008, he introduced an area of focus under Basic Education and Literacy and in 2010, the Rotary Club of Belleville started the first Literacy Committee under chair Michael Maloney.  One of the first partnerships was with the Amarok Society, a small NGO registered charity founded by a Canadian family in Bangladesh.  The Mission is to teach illiterate mothers basic literacy skills in slum neighbourhoods to start micro schools where the mothers would teach five children each.  Thirty Amarok Schools were established to teach 750 mothers who in turn would teach 3,750 students.  The goal was to transfer the students to government schools where they could graduate from post secondary with government scholarships.  The success rate was high.  Through a Global Grant $100,000 Canadian was raised, $7,500 of which came from the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Digital skills were introduced and grant goals met and exceeded.  The world of Internet opened and the program expanded to India.  This program has huge benefits on the lives of people, lifting them out of poverty, providing mothers with better jobs and brighter futures for the children.  Annual support will be continued through a District Grant in 2024/2025.
The Rotary Club of Belleville has partnered with the Hastings Prince Edward Humane Society to support a new program called Rescue Readers, where classes of elementary school children visit the new Humane Society Shelter.  Students learn about what is involved in having and caring for a pet, the role of Shelters and developing empathy for other living creatures.  The students are given a tour of the building and have an opportunity to read to the animals.  Literacy activity involves reading aloud to a non-judgemental audience and what could be better than calming an animal and helping them socialize.  Benefits of both ends of the leash!  Sharon was quick to point out that everyone can participate in a fellowship opportunity on September 28th, joining colleagues, friends, family to walk your dogs around Zwicks Park, all in support of this really fun initiative.  The event is organized by the Humane Society called Wiggle Waggle Walkathon.  Funds raised can be in support of the Rescue Readers Program.

The 9th Annual Inter-Rotary Club Spelling Bee is coming up with 7 Rotary Clubs involved. Each Rotary Club donates $500 to cover prizes and promotional material.   The Spelling Bee is for Grades 4 - 6 (Junior) and Grades 7 - 8 (Intermediate).  The regional finals will be held at Bayside and aired on YOUR TV on May 11, 2024.  A joint Competition in the form of an Adult Spelling Bee will be hosted by the Trenton Rotary Club at These 4 Walls on Monday, April 15th as a taste of what's to come.  Sharon is looking for team(s) of six. 
Having read all of this work that the Literacy Committee does, it's no surprise that Sharon McConnell is looking for new members to join.  Guaranteed to be worth your while and lots of fun too!  Call Sharon at (613) 661-7781 or send her an email at sharonmcconnell50 @gmail.com.
Literacy Committee Update Sharon McConnell 2024-03-28 04:00:00Z 0

Community Grants Update

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Community Grants Chair, Rotarian Brenda Snider started her presentation by introducing the members of the Committee -- Tracey Vandervoort, Harold Brennan, Cassandra Bonn, Judy McKnight, Shannon Neely and Jared Bellemare. The process is fairly straight forward.  Organizations submit a grant application to the Rotary Club of Belleville, Community Grants Committee where it is reviewed and the Committee determines what is the greatest need in the community.  While the process is not complicated, the results are rewarding.  Over the last three years, $63,000 has been dispersed into the community as outlined below.
The Children's Safety Village provides students with a safety training program facilitated by the Belleville Police Service, Fire Prevention Office, Internet safety and St. John Ambulance as well as VIA rail train safety is offered.  The funds provided by Rotary support the transportation of students to and from the Village from the school.  The training is provided no charge.  Three Oaks Stage Two housing received funding to purchase playground equipment and toys.  To assist with rehabilitation of youth in conflict with the justice system, mentorship is provided through the PACT Program.  Rotarian Chris Finkle and his work crew purchased a 3D printer and offset the costs of making face shields for front-line workers to support programs and agencies in the community during those tough COVID days.
A weekly program is provided by Abigails Learning Centre in partnership with Belleville Quinte West Community Health Centre to help educate parents on parenting and other life skills as well as mental health support.  Training is also provided to pregnant or new mothers with child care offered while in class.  Funding was provided to the Strive to Thrive Care packages provided by the Children's Foundation for their virtual mental health program.  The Good Baby Box program is supported through Community Development Council Quinte and provides families access to formula and diapers at affordable costs.
Volunteer Information Quinte received funding to support the Community and Youth Program facilitator to provide presentations to Grade 10 students regarding volunteer opportunities, benefits and supports and career planning.  This builds youth self esteem and self worth, builds future leaders and offers youth the opportunity to develop skills and to network with others.  Popular Camp Molly assists with firefighting training for young females as an introduction to consider a career as a firefighter.  Big Brothers/Sisters facilitates a school mentoring program for children where they receive one on one matches with a volunteer and meet on school property, spending time reading, playing games, sharing stories where there is opportunity for the students to build self-esteem, self-worth and healthy relationships.  
We have heard (today also) about the Humane Society Rescue Readers program.  Check out the other story on the Literacy Committee.
Hospice Quinte received funding to support the 2nd Annual Caregivers Expo, bringing together all service providers for an event where families can attend and learn about programs and services offered for their loved ones, providing support for the caregivers as well as individuals and family members.  Music to our ears?  The Quinte Symphony received funding to assist with the 2023 Spring Concert.
And there you have it, all the hard work of the Community Grants Committee.
Community Grants Update Brenda Snider 2024-03-28 04:00:00Z 0

The Rotary Foundation

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Past District Governor Jim Louttit and advisor on The Rotary Foundation/Endowment/Major Gifts for District 7070 was welcomed by Past President Darrell Smith.  As a way of introduction, Jim is the President of JVL Global Corp, a financial services consulting company specializing in community development and microfinance.  Prior to starting his own consulting company in 2012, he worked for the Bank of Nova Scotia with much of his work in their International Banking Division where he lived and worked in Central and South America for seven years serving in Executive roles.
Jim became a Rotarian in early 2005 as a founding member and Second Vice-President of the Rotary Club of Lima Sunrise in District 4450.  After leaving Peru in 2007 to return to Canada, he joined Toronto Sunrise in District 7070 serving as President in 2010-11.  He also served as District Governor in 2016-17 and remains active in the District's Foundation, Governance and Membership Committees. In 2021-22, Jim became an Adviser for the Community Economic Development Major Gifts Initiative (CED-MGI) Committee and will serve in this role until June 2024.   He is the Past Chair of the Rotary Action Group Chairs Council serving in this role for the Rotary years 2019-20 and 2020-21.  He is also a Past President of the Rotary Action Group for Community Economic Development (RAGCED) and a past Chair of their Advisory Board.  Jim is also a member of the Environmental Sustainability Rotary Action Group (ESRAG); the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene Rotary Action Group (WASHRAG); and the Rotary Action Group for Peace (RAGFP) as well as a member of the International Fellowship of Motorcycling Rotarians (IFMR) and IT Professionals Forum Rotary Fellowship.  He is a member of the Paul Harris Society, Bequest Society, and is a Major Donor.
It was the 6th President of Rotary International in 1916, Arch C. Klumph who suggested Rotary start an endowment fund to do good in the world.  The Rotary Foundation became formalized in 1928 with an investment of $26.50 U.S. and today it is worth more than one billion dollars.  For the 15th consecutive year, the Rotary Foundation has been recognized by Charity Navigator as a Four Star Charity that encourages people to give with confidence based on the organization's financial health including measures of stability, efficiency and sustainability.  Also tracked is accountability and transparency policies to ensure the good governance and integrity of the organization.  Quite an achievement!
Through Rotary's "doing good in the world", the worldwide eradication of polio has been made possible, through Rotary's Peace Center Program Peace Building has been achieved, and both global and district grants have included humanitarian projects, scholarships and vocational training teams.  A Masters degree program and professional development certificate program has provided on-line and classroom education around the world through the Peace Centers and each year, 1600 program alumni are working on peace and development in more than 140 countries.
Global Grant Funding for Rotary Year 2014 through to 2023 has been broken down as follows:
  • Disease prevention and treatment - $369,785,348
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene - $177,226,066
  • Community economic development - $104,607,915
  • Basic education and literacy - $91,471,520
  • Maternal and child health - $67,063,275
  • Peacebuilding and conflict prevention - $34,252,724
  • Environment - $5,234,447
Rotary's Disaster Response Fund has approved 375 grant applications since COVID, over $17 million dollars with 300 Districts involved.  Donating to the Rotary Foundation through annual giving ensures help and support today continues.  This giving is the life blood of the Foundation.  Long-term planning through an endowment fund is also available to provide support forever.  Directing your gift to what matters most to you was one of the top reasons the Rotary Foundation is flourishing.  A person can donate to one foundation with many option.  A major donor is one who gifts $10,000 or more U.S. and an Arch Klumph Society donor is one who gifts $250,000 or more U.S.
And to quote Arch C. Klumph we should not live for ourselves alone, but for the joy in doing good for others.
The Rotary Foundation Jim Louttit 2024-03-14 04:00:00Z 0

Refresh Rotary Update

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In April and May 2023, the Rotary Club of Belleville spearheaded a Rotary Refresh initiative.  The purpose of this exercise was to involve Rotary members in a process with the aim of co-creating positive change, as identified by members, that results in attracting new members and aligning activities with ways in which the Club can best serve Belleville and uphold Rotary's 7 Areas of Focus.  As an update, Janeen presented the areas Rotary Refresh Focus:
  • Lunch Club and Satellite Club -- one club with two meeting times, lunch and evening, in-person, alternating weeks.  Exploring ways to accommodate virtual attendance in ways that create minimal support and ease for example, listen only.
  • Rotary Club awareness -- new Club tent.  Exploring ways members can promote Rotary when volunteering and attending events, e.g., Rotary caps, tee-shirts, when at RLK, Children's Christmas Party, Porchfest, Touch-a-Truck, tree planting, Senators 50/50, etc.
  • Recruit new members -- 7 new members have joined.  The committee is exploring a 'recruitment drive' or event.  Have Rotary take-aways, e.g., postcard at events like Winter Games and others mentioned.
  • Engage existing members -- speakers to include recipients of Paul Harris Awards, recipients of grants to discuss impact, Rotarians with history in the Club, new community members, e.g., downtown developer, Zubin, artist with pieces in MOMA & Tate, ordinary people with extraordinary stories, etc.
  • Focus and clarity of fundraising activities -- committee work in process
  • Energize meetings -- social time to mingle built in at both lunch and evening meetings.  Meeting energizers.  Peter's jokes of the day
Next steps to ensure discussions and ideas raised at the Refresh Rotary Committee meetings are brought forward to the Board.  Encouraging members who are not on the committee, but would like to share input and insights to reach out to Committee members -- Peter Malone, Tracey Vandervoort, Janeen Halliwell, Ruth Mathieson, Cristina Cadavid, John Smale, Peter Coy and Karen Baker.  Ensure the work of the Committee intersects with other Committee work such as Public Image and Recruitment.  Continue to work together to move our efforts forward.
This work is about change.  We are evolving and need to take time to be thoughtful as we move forward.
Refresh Rotary Update Janeen Halliwell 2024-03-14 04:00:00Z 0

International Service Update

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Dr. Ruth Mathieson took the opportunity to share how some of the Rotary money is spent and the good we are doing in the world through International Service.  One of the people our Club supports is Dr. Paul Thistle, who lives and works in Zimbabwe.  He is an obstetrician/gynaecologist who married a local midwife, Pedrinah, learned to speak Shona and have three boys, two of them are now studying at Toronto University.  Dr. Thistle first came on Rotary's radar in 2004 when Dr. Bill Beattie sent over a hockey bag full of medications.  Then in 2007, vital hospital equipment was sent from BGH in a 40 foot sea container which included 30 beds, 28 mattresses, 3 cribs and lots of medical supplies.  The Rotary Club of Belleville gave $2,400 towards the freight charges.  We have continued to support him over the years.  The latest was a contribution to the rehabilitation ward and pocket money for him, as he now volunteers at Karanda hospital.  Four times a year he writes an email letter, called the Thistle Epistle.  Here are some excerpts from his latest letter.
"The work at Karanda continues in the midst of armed conflicts and humanitarian crises around the globe.  Zimbabwe faces its own specific challenges, including the recent rapid devaluation of the local currency, a national cholera epidemic and an active polio outbreak.  In addition, we are facing a drought year.  The once promising crops are withering on the vine.  According to the 2023 Zimbabwean Rural Livelihoods Assessment Report, 49% of people lack basic sanitation at home, 45% are affected by drought and 17% walk more than one kilometer to their water source daily, 26% of children are stunted and 17% are classified as having severe hunger.  We have noted that the gap between the 'haves' and the 'have-nots' has widened, more so in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic".  In spite of these challenges "we are eager to turn the sod on 2024 projects:  maternity extension, laboratory expansion, chapel renovations, dormitory and solarization of the hospital compound.  The needs seem endless, our five year strategic plan ambitious.  However, in contrast to the Beatles' song, we get by with a big help from our friends at home and abroad.  Thank you everyone."
International Service Update Dr. Ruth Mathieson 2024-03-14 04:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk

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Cristina Cadavid has been a member of the Rotary Club of Belleville since July 2023, introduced to Rotary by President Peter Malone.  Cristina became famous with a hole in one at RLK in 2023.  Rotarian Melanie Cressman introduced Cristina as the guest speaker today at the lunch meeting and described her as "being everywhere".  Her enthusiasm and love of everything about an event is contagious.
Cristina admitted she did not have a power point presentation, but brought something more valuable, picture books of her life story, a rich tapestry of diverse experiences and cultural influences that have shaped her into who she is today.  The origin of her last name, Cadavid, is Spanish as Cristina was born in Bogota, Colombia, founded in 1536 by a Spanish conquistador, a city that is a vibrant metropolis full of history and perched on the eastern Andes Mountain range at an elevation of 2,600 meters above sea level.  Cristina's father still lives in Bogota, her mother lives in Sweden, one of her brothers and her sister live in Spain and another brother that Cristina refers to as her best friend lives in Sweden.  Cristina spent her summers in Florida with her grandparents, but in 1990 made the transcontinental move to Taby, Sweden with her mother and brother.  In 1991 she returned to Bogota and graduated from high school in 2000 and started a career in business administration.  She switched to culinary arts in 2004 and built her hospitality industry career by expanding her responsibilities.   Moving to London, Ontario in 2006 was a big dream, although she was initially shocked by how much snow there was.  Her son Samuel was born that same year and as of 2024 he will be attending the University of Ottawa and Cristina asks herself where the time goes.  But London is where she met her husband Blair and they were married in 2012 with two wedding ceremonies, one in Canada and one in Bogota with friends and family in attendance.  That same year Cristina became a Canadian citizen.  Her second son arrived in August of 2013, the final piece to their family and when Blair was promoted to General Manager in 2016, the family moved to Belleville and started another chapter in their book.  Cristina worked for five years at Rosemary & Thyme, a popular, family-owned restaurant in Belleville's east end.  More doors of opportunity opened when Cristina took Public Relations and Event Management at Loyalist College and graduated with honours.  Through her current role as Fundraising Coordinator at the Community Development Council of Quinte, Cristina is able to give back to the community that she has learned to love.  She sits on various boards and committees, making a positive impact in Belleville and beyond.  She represents the non-profit sector on the Belleville Chamber of Commerce Board and uses her hospitality industry skills on the Belleville Club Board.  As a Rotarian, Cristina sits on the Public Image Committee and Refresh Rotary.  And after 33 years, Cristina is returning to Sweden to visit her mother and brother.  So excited!  And believe it or not, Cristina continues to look forward to new adventures, growth and fellowship through Rotary.  She is honoured to be making a different in the community, using her unique background and skills to creative positive change.
Cristina was thanked by Rotarian Yakov Sobolev, who acknowledged her diversified skill set and the benefit of her energy when planning an event! 
Classification Talk Cristina Cadavid 2024-02-29 05:00:00Z 0

Chief Michael T. Callaghan

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Chief of Police Michael T. Callaghan was introduced as the guest speaker at the Rotary Club of Belleville lunch meeting on February 15th by Marg Wagner, former Rotarian and member of the Police Services Board for eight and a half years.  Marg was on the hiring committee to bring Mike Callaghan back to Belleville as Deputy Chief.  (Marg Wagner is pictured here with President of the Rotary Club of Belleville, Peter Malone, Rotarian Nadine Langlois and Chief Callaghan). 
Callaghan made one of his last few speaking engagements on Thursday to the Rotary Club of Belleville at Capers on Front Street in Belleville. It was a packed house of Rotary members and guests who came to hear what Chief Callaghan had to say, before departing for a well-deserved retirement after dedicating 39 years serving and protecting through various Police Services.
“It’s bittersweet that I retire as I truly love the city, I love what we do, and I love my job” was part of his opening comment. He is also looking forward to being able to spend quality time with his loving wife Terry, who has been at his side his entire career despite being a stage four cancer survivor.
The presentation wasn’t so much about his amazing 39 years wearing blue, the dedicated service, and the great stories along the way. Instead, his story focussed on the unfortunate situation in which our city has found itself over the past few years. So, the focus steered toward the question that seems to be on everybody’s mind at the moment - serious opioid and drug overdose problems faced by the city in recent times. He noted “the problem isn’t localized to our community but is being felt across the province and country in police comparators – police services of similar size”.
Belleville Police Chief Mike Callaghan says he is very optimistic that they will be able to make some progress in key areas soon with provincial help. 
His words on the history of past decisions regarding permanent care facilities led the listeners through the social policies and peeling away of true support networks that many addicts or mentally ill individuals need to navigate life. Now on the streets struggling mentally and living with addiction, we see the impact of those decision made starting in 1993. Social policy decisions sound good at the time and can make sense when trying to convince taxpayers that it’s in their best interest to save money through service cuts. We can now see these decisions haven’t saved taxpayers any resources, but have actually cost us more in socio-economic terms.
“Many experts suggest that there are impact factors that are needed in communities struggling to help addicts. We need a detox centre and a RAAM clinic - Rapid Access to Addictions Medicine”. He went on to discuss another policy change that led us to this point based on international observations. Namely the law to decriminalize drugs in Portugal and how that country is revisiting that decision based on their struggles with increased substance abuse and addictions.
Dialogue continued with the little impact that interdictions and enforcement are having due to legal barriers that exist. “While it’s a component to help curb the problem its by no means a solution”. It was noted that the strain on the various services is clear. Fire, ambulance, police, hospital doctors and nurses are pushed to the limits with filling the addiction services role. “It’s obvious and clear that we can’t continue to address addictions through emergency service channels”. He also noted that “the exhaustion is real as is compassion fatigue”. These dedicated front-line service experts lose their passion when helping the same individuals night after night after night. This isn’t the definition of helping the community when the very small number of individuals use the services over and over again.
The call to action is clear – if we as members of the community want change, we will have to have our voices heard by the leaders whom we have elected at every level of government. Rotary Club of Belleville President, Peter Malone, thanked Chief Callaghan for his many years of service and recognized the incredible work of the Belleville Police Service and all first responders during a complex and difficult time in our City. Peter closed with “The Rotary Club of Belleville wishes the Chief and his wife Terry all the best in retirement and thanked him for his leadership role in our community”.  Rotarian Cassandra Bonn presented Chief Callaghan with a certificate of thanks, noting that a donation would be made for the Food for Learning program, providing a student with a hot meal.


Chief Michael T. Callaghan 2024-02-15 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow Recognition

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Rotary International established the Paul Harris Fellow recognition in 1957 to encourage and show appreciation for substantial contributions to the Rotary Foundation.  The Paul Harris Fellow recognition acknowledges individuals who have contributed $1,000 to the Rotary Foundation and recognition levels are given for each $1,000 given to the Rotary Foundation.  President Peter was pleased to present Past President Sam Brady with his Paul Harris Fellow +8.  The Rotary Foundation, established in 1917 is a non-profit corporation that supports the efforts of Rotary International to achieve world understanding and peace through international humanitarian, education and cultural exchange programs.
As well, the Rotary Club of Belleville provides Paul Harris recognition to members who have completed 10 years of active service in the Club.  President Peter Malone was pleased to present Marg Wagner with her Paul Harris Fellow for 10 years of service from 2012 to 2022 to the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Marg graciously agreed to introduce today's speaker, Chief Michael T. Callaghan, having worked with the Chief as a member of the Police Services Board during her tenure of 8 1/2 years.  In fact, Marg was involved in the recruiting team when Chief Callaghan was hired as Deputy Chief in 2016.  Marg was so pleased to be able to perform this task and provide the Chief with a warm Rotary welcome.
Paul Harris Fellow Recognition 2024-02-15 05:00:00Z 0

55th Community Service Club Luncheon

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Born and raised in Belleville attending Kente Public School in Ameliasburgh and Centennial Secondary School, Scott is one of Canada's most sought-after corporate communications and issues management professionals and a founder of the firm Feschuk Reid.  A former senior advisor to Prime Minister Paul Martin, he has counselled countless CEOs, senior executives and political leaders.  He is the former co-host of CTV's National Affairs, a past columnist for the Ottawa Citizen, currently serves as an analyst for CTV News, Newstalk 1010AM and the Bellmedia radio network.  He is also featured on the popular Curse of Politics podcast.  In 2022, Scott was named one of Canada's 50 most influential Canadians by Maclean's Magazine.  He is a Fellow at the Clayton Riddell School of Political Management at Carleton University and is an Adjunct Professor at Queen's University's School of Political Studies where he teaches a course on government communications as part of the Masters of Political Administration program. 
The 55th annual Joint Services Club Luncheon was held at The Grand and the hall was filled to capacity, a total of 13 service clubs represented and welcomed by Peter Malone, President of the Rotary Club of Belleville as host -- the Picton Rotary Club, Quinte Sunrise, Stirling Rotary Club, Trenton Rotary Club, Wellington Rotary Club, Belleville Shriners, Belleville and Trenton Kiwanis, the Lions Club, Belleville and Quinte Probus and the Hospital Auxiliary.  Dignitaries included MPP and Ontario Energy Minister Todd Smith, Belleville Mayor Neil Ellis, Hastings County Warden Bob Mullen and Past President of Rotary International Wilf Wilkinson who remains active in the Trenton Rotary Club.  Also present were LG Marj Buck, Kiwanis District and Assistant Governor Sandi Ramsay, Rotary District 7070.  Each of the Club Representatives presented current initiatives about their organization and the work being done in the community.  Very impressive with a very wide scope of community service, all for the greater good in our community. (pictured above Cory and Bill MacKay, Co-Presidents of the Rotary Club of Stirling and Peter Malone, center)
Scott Reid remains optimistic with respect to the current Canadian political system as well as in the U.S. that the pendulum will swing back from today's deterioration overall, influenced by lessons of humility and perseverance and commitment of like-minded people such as are here today.  We are what drives the direction and will end up being in a better place, more positive.  Social media has encouraged the promotion of saying horrible things, winding up already angry folks.  Today's politicians operate using a different set of principles, nothing to do with party association.  We need to look for certain values in political people who recognize the importance of service and a sense of acting collectively, coming together.  What used to be a sense of community has been beaten out of politics and people need a taste of humility, not acting out of a sense of their own self.  Being part of a team needs to be a combined effort with dedication towards the constituency being the greatest priority.
Brad Ford, President of the Belleville Kiwanis Club thanked Scott for reminding everyone that politics are everywhere and people of the right character are what are needed to be leaders.
55th Community Service Club Luncheon Scott Reid 2024-02-01 05:00:00Z 0


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The 2024 Rotary Youth Leadership Symposium (RYLS) for District 7070 will be taking place, April 18-21, 2024 at the Ganaraska Forest Centre! The 3-night, 4-day experience is geared toward youth between the ages of 16-20 and will offer an inspiring program: Conflict Resolution, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Reconciliation and Land Based Education, Leadership, Hands-on Activities, Group Dynamics, Public Speaking, Outdoor Survival along with campfires, friendship and tons of fun and learning!!!
The $385 fee for our participant will cover all programs, accommodation, and meals and will be paid for by the Belleville Rotary Club. There are only 30 spots available and I am sure this will be most rewarding opportunity for a son or daughter, grandchild, niece or nephew or someone in our community.  I have attended a number of these youth conferences where our club was involved and I can say the programs are brilliant!
Applications are due by March 1, 2024. Please let me know ASAP if you have a candidate in mind. 
John Smale 
Youth Chair,
Rotary Club of Belleville 
RYLA John Smale 2024-01-21 05:00:00Z 0
Missing Rotary Club Banners 2024-01-21 05:00:00Z 0
2024-2027 Board of Directors Needed 2024-01-21 05:00:00Z 0

Mayor Neil Ellis

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The Rotary Club of Belleville was very pleased to welcome His Worship Mayor Neil Ellis to the lunch meeting on January 18th to share what's ahead for the City of Belleville and for an opportunity to hear what is in store for the community.  Mayor Ellis was introduced by Rotarian Dave Allen and touched on several topics of interest.
Housing and real estate is costing more than the average person can afford, in fact, it's taking about 50% of a person's income to provide shelter in some cases.  A month ago, a real estate agent shared that she had a rental property available for $2,400 and had 81 applications.  It is a priority for the government to get back into affordable housing.  Perhaps housing should be a fundamental right in Canada.
Twelve or thirteen years ago, the doctor recruitment program was started and 21 doctors were recruited in the first couple of years.  At that time there were 10,000 people without doctors.  Now, ten years later there are 15,000 people without doctors.  The Mayor intends to raise this at an upcoming Ministry of Health meeting.  Should more medical schools be opened up or more positions available at university for medical students and foreign doctors.  People need to be encouraged to go into the medical field.  As a City, we have spent over 4 million dollars on doctor recruitment.  Regardless of whether it is deemed a provincial issue, it really becomes a council issue.
It has been a challenge to get the 2024 budget below 5%.  The Mayor and Council would like to be lower, but in today's terms of inflation, the best that could be done was just under 5%.  Comparables are at 6.9% and 6.6%.  The City of Belleville did not take money out of reserves to meet their goal.
The area's population has expanded by approximately 7,000 people.  Belleville is the hub, people come to this area for work and that puts pressure on our services including emergency services.  The homeless situation also puts pressure on all services.  Growth is good but requires investment in human capital.  That includes increasing police resources where calls for service have increased between 20% to 25% over the last three years.  This year's budget includes the hiring of 8 new police officers.  It is hoped that Council will endorse during budget deliberations plus another 6 in the next year.  The priority is to have more than 6 officers on the road at any one time.  Urban boundary has moved so resources such as fire and police have to keep pace with that growth.  Drug overdoses have been as high as 90 in one week as well as 24 fire calls in a 24 hour period.  These demands taxes both police and fire in the City along with EMS.  It may come as a shock but all city buildings now have security and this costs over half a million dollars to provide and ensure building security is maintained throughout the City.
The City has been successful in new businesses opening up and people continuing to move here.  A focus is required on new housing and there is a Loyalist Secondary Property plan to build 9000 new housing units to meet the needs for the next 20 years of growth.  The City also needs to focus on serviceable industrial sites for the future.  Council is moving forward to ready industrial land over the next two years.  As well the Queen Mary site has been approved for affordable housing and a tender will be issued in the near future.  There are other issues such as Myers Pier that needs attention and the water treatment plant, both big projects.    There are three revenue streams for the City -- user fees, grants and taxes.  User fees are currently subsidized at 90% and the goal should be at 65% so a plan needs to be developed to raise user fees to a more acceptable level for use.  We have one of the best facilities in Eastern Ontario and although more capital costs are required, we offer a better product.
Rotarian Jennifer Savini thanked the Mayor, recognizing his time and effort that he and staff put in to the Rotary Mayors of the Week program.  The Mayor was thanked for his support of the Rotary Club of Belleville and the programs undertaken by the Club.                                                                                         
Mayor Neil Ellis 2024-01-18 05:00:00Z 0

Rotary Winter Games

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Organizers Cristina Cadavid and Yakov Sobolev are pleased to announce that the The Rotary Winter Games event is now live on Eventbrite for the general public, Rotarians, family and friends.  The event will be held at the Belleville Club on February 23rd, doors open at 6:30 p.m.  Tickets are $25 per person.  The event is guaranteed to blow away all the February blues.  There will be games, music, dancing, prizes and lots of FUN!  Click on link for more information https://www.eventbrite.com/e/rotary-winter-games-tickets-789185012617
Cristina and Yakov are looking to sell sponsorship packages as well as looking for silent auction prizes.   Posters and QR code is now avazilable and are looking for help selling tickets via Eventbrite, social media sharing as well.  The push is to grow the event and increased funds raised all while having fun. 
Positive progress todate but please let them know if you would like to help some part of the organizational phase. 
Rotary Winter Games Cristina Cadavid Gamble 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign

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Dianne Spencer Committee Chair of  Rotary's involvement in the 2023 Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign.  Based on the media reports the goal of $365,000 was exceeded, todate at close to  $373,000 and will grow when online donations are included.  Dianne pointed out that District Governor John Burns volunteered with the Kettle Campaign at the LCBO in Bowmanville and shared a photo of himself in his most recent newsletter.  Dianne was happy to share some numbers from the Rotary Club of Belleville and our help with the Kettle Campaign during December 2023 at the LCBO location near the Quinte Mall. There were 96 shifts to fill at that location, and thanks to Rotarian Kerry Paul a signup schedule was set up on Club Runner, which worked well for Rotarians and others to access too. Nineteen members of the Rotary Club of Belleville as well as one retired member and four members of Stirling Rotary Club signed up for 65 shifts or 2/3rds of the shifts available. We were joined by another five friends and family of Rotarians who covered another 15 shifts, so in total 29 people collectively covered 80 shifts or 83% of the time available. This was a huge support to the Salvation Army who were able to fill many of their remaining spaces. I should also mention that another four Rotarians signed up but had to change their plans because of personal circumstances.
A number of Rotarians served multiple shifts in order to achieve this result and I want to give a special shout out to fellow committee member Nadine Langlois, who covered at least 13 shifts - awesome! Jamie Trudeau (in the photo) covered at least nine shifts, and Karen Baker, Vince Lynch, and Sharon McConnell each had at least five shifts. Sharon’s son Ruben, covered three shifts. These are just outstanding efforts by outstanding people - thank you to everyone for your support!
The Salvation Army acknowledges the incredible accomplishment and participation by the Rotary Club of Belleville and thanked everyone for giving of their time to help make a difference in the City of Belleville.  The alignment of the Kettle Campaign’s theme “Hope Beyond Christmas” with the Rotary theme “Create Hope in the World”, makes our involvement and the wonderful result something we should be proud of.  Dianne contributed $50 Happy Bucks.
The Salvation Army is hosting a Kettle Appreciation Dinner on Friday, January 19th at 6:00 p.m. at the Salvation Army Church on Bridge Street West.  Everyone who volunteered on the kettle are invited.  Please let Nadine Langlois know if you are able and wish to attend.  An opportunity for a sincere thank you to all.
Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign Dianne Spencer 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Anne Leverton Service Above Self Award

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Co-Chairs of Rotary Loves Kids, Dave Allen and Cassandra Bonn recognized an outstanding volunteer who contributed and helped make RLK such a success and the largest fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Belleville.  A behind the scenes person.  They never had to worry about the tasks assigned to this person.  The signs were built and ready, early the morning of the golf tournament at both courses, Black Bear and Trillium Wood.  All the sponsorship signs were displayed at each hole.  Everything had been taken care of.  Dave and Cassandra considered it a privilege to present the Anne Leverton Service Above Self Award to Michael Henry.
Anne Leverton Service Above Self Award Dave Allen and Cassandra Bonn 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

60th Rotary Anniversary

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Robert (Bob) Ord joined Rotary in 1964, sixty years ago on January 4th.  President Peter Malone pointed out that he would have been three years old living in the northeast of England, in row housing with outside toilet and tin bath that was brought from outside and put in front of the coal fireplace.  Where were you in 1964.  Bob Ord became Club President for the Rotary Year 1972 - 73.  This is Bob's day, an incredible achievement.  Welcome to Bob's wife, Ardelle (Tommy) who could join in this celebration today.  The Rotary Club of Belleville salutes Bob and are extremely grateful and proud to recognize his wonderful achievements as a person, a family man, a professional and as a Rotarian.  A true inspiration to us all and an example of Service Above Self. 
A little background on Bob.  He became the city solicitor in the 80's until his retirement in 2009.  Bob has always been a walker and remains one todate.  He would walk daily to the old post office and back to his law office that at that time was on Front Street (Victoria and Grey Trust building) and when he joined Bill Proctor, he would walk from the corner of Bell Blvd. and North Front to College Street West to the post office outlet there and then back again.  Today, you would see Bob walking along Rednersville Road.  Bob sang in the choir at Bridge Street United Church in the 70's.  He was also past Chair of the Rotary Music Festival.  Bob's efforts were not confined to Rotary, but he was a School Board Trustee in Hastings County and in Prince Edward County.  Bob's involvement at Bridge Street included the Congregational Board, the Bridge Street Foundation, founding member of Quinte Living Centre Board along with the Community Concert Association and United Community Services (United Way) Board.  Bob met his wife, Ardelle (Tommy) when he was an engineering student at U of T and they were married in 1962.  They moved to Rednersville Road in 1976 after purchasing a second car at Ardelle's insistence.  They enjoyed many years at the family cottage on Mississagagon Lake that apparently is one of the cleanest lakes in all of Ontario.  Bob was always interested in sports and played squash, racquetball and took up mountain biking in his 60's and later he and his wife enjoyed travelling together.
Bob took the opportunity to say a few words.  His experience with Rotary goes back to his early years as his father was a member of the Rotary Club of Windsor and attending events left a lasting impression on Bob.  He started practising law in 1964 in Lindsay, Ontario and joined Rotary that same year and in 1965 he moved to Belleville and joined the Rotary Club here.  He has met fine members over the 60 years in Rotary who have left an indelible impression on him.  Bob mentioned Jim Marker who was President of the Club in 1967-1968.  He was Bob's mentor and a fine influence on him, encouraging Bob to join the Club.  Bob has seen some changes in Rotary over the years and Rotary continues to evolve and Bob encouraged members to find ways and means to keep Rotary strong in order to continue to thrive as effective leaders, dedicated to Service Above Self. 
Rotary International President Gordon McInally wrote a letter to Bob, congratulating him on his 60 years with Rotary, a testament to Bob's devotion to the Club, the community, its members and the world we all share.  Bob's work is a sign of hope to the world.
District Governor John Burns presented Bob with a Paul Harris Fellow +5 and the special letter of recognition from Rotary International President Gordon McInally.  Flowers were presented to Ardelle and cake shared with everyone (back row L to R President Peter Malone, District Governor John Burns, front row L to R Ardelle and Robert Ord)
60th Rotary Anniversary Robert Ord 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Perfect Attendance

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Vice-President and Membership Chair Tracey Vandervoort presented 31 Rotarians with perfect attendance pins.  Tracey pointed out it's not just about having lunch, but perfect attendance  by attending regular meetings, committee activities and other events shows a sincere dedication to the Rotary Club of Belleville and the community.  Participation is vital and Tracey was pleased to say we have added seven new members to the Club since June 2023.  Alphabetically (not all available for the photo) listed recipients -- Karen Baker, Anya-Deane Best, Cassandra Bonn, Tracy Bray, John Chisholm, Peter Coy, Melanie Cressman, Ken Dickson, Heather Hall, Janeen Halliwell, Andrew Kole, Hazzem Koudsi, Nadine Langlois, Vince Lynch, Peter Malone, Ruth Mathieson, Kim McKinney, Judy McKnight, Collin Myers, Rosi Ouellette, Coreen Reynolds, Margaret Seu, Darrell Smith, Brenda Snider, Dianne Spencer, Michael Summers, Terry Thomas, Jamie Trudeau, Tracey Vandervoort, Jo-Anne Wheeler, Ken Wheeler.
Perfect Attendance 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow

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Past President Darrell Smith was pleased to present Paul Harris Fellow awards to 14 members of the Rotary Club of Belleville.  The Paul Harris Fellow award was initiated in 1957, the highest form of recognition for outstanding contribution to the community as a non-Rotarian as well as a financial contribution to the Rotary Foundation over a cumulative period of time as a Rotarian and a long-term commitment to Rotary.  Members having achieved ten (10) years service as a Rotarian included Margaret Wagner, Michael Henry, Adam Zegouras and Cassandra Bonn.  Rotarians who have achieved the financial commitment over time included Peter Malone (PHF), Jo-Anne Wheeler and David Albert (PHF +3), Ray McCoy (PHF +5), Darrell Smith (PHF +7), Darrell Smith and Sam Brady (PHF +8) and special tenured PHF +5 Robert Ord (60 years), Robert Burns (50 years) and Garth Stephanson (50 years). 
Outstanding commitments by all!
Paul Harris Fellow 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Rotary Star and Warrior Pin Award

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Peter Malone took the opportunity to recognize the efforts of a Rotarian who he feels is someone he would say is a High IMPACT Rotarian person: 
  1. nspirational - for the work they do
  2. akes a difference in the lives of others
  3. ositive Peace Maker
  4. bove & Beyond
  5. ommunity Orientated and Engaged
  6. enacious and gets stuff done…..
The members might all recognize this person as a Proud, Active and Extremely engaged Rotarian who is also active in numerous community organizations outside of Rotary. A high performing mom, work professional, event organizer, fund raiser and a fundamentally nice person to know. A Role model and someone who takes Service Above Self very seriously and who in doing her work, elevates the good name of Rotary and the spirit of being a Rotarian.
Peter recognized Cassandra Bonn as a true Rotary Star and presented her with the Warrior Pin as a symbol of Service Above SelfCassandra was honoured to receive this recognition as one of many who use the Rotary platform to do more in the community, in the country and around the world.  That's why we have events, raise money and to see where our money goes.  Cassandra was very grateful for the opportunities that Rotary provides.
Rotary Star and Warrior Pin Award Peter Malone 2024-01-04 05:00:00Z 0

Holiday Dinner and Rotary Talent

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President Peter Malone welcomed all to the Rotary Club of Belleville Festive Dinner with Rotary Talent.  A big festive welcome to everyone and a special Rotary welcome to our many guests.  We belong to a very special and strong Rotary Club that has been doing great work for more than a century.  Peter is particularly excited to be a part of the Refresh Rotary work being done with guidance from Janeen Halliwell and Paul Fleming as we emerge from COVID and look to ensure that the Club remains strong for the future. 
Many things are being done around the areas of public image and member engagement under the leadership of Directors Hazzem Koudsi and Tracey Vandervoort.  We are at seven (7) new members this year with number eight (8) in process and have exciting developments in the works to further increase that number.
Everyone was encouraged to sit back and enjoy the musical talent, thanks to Past President John Chisholm for coordinating the evening of musical entertainment. (pictured here are the Soundsations - John and Wanda Chisholm and Al and Vivian Murak).  Elaine and Theresa Allen provided a duet and a solo rendition of beautiful music.  A 50/50 draw, an auction from Rotarian and local artist Chris Finkle of beautiful Santa prints, Dave Allen festive trivia challenge and the arrival of St. Nick (Sam Brady) were all part of the evening as well. 
As Rotarians, we are generally blessed with lives of relative luxury and opportunities unknown to many.  Help us to review the registers of our lives as we consider our priorities and our opportunity to help others.  Open our hearts and our service to those in need.  Help us to share not only our tangible wealth, but also our intangible riches of knowledge, leadership and creativity to make our city, our nation and our world a better place filled with positive peace and love.
Holiday Dinner and Rotary Talent 2023-12-21 05:00:00Z 0

Fur Coat Drive

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Birgit Wartenberg, Chair of Indigenous Peoples Partnerships would like to thank everyone on the IPPC cluster team for their tremendous work, effort and dedication to make the gently used fur coat drive such a huge success. We will ship 32 beautiful fur coats, 1 stole, 1 collar, 2 suede coats and  small fur pieces.   
It takes a "village" to pull this off. Here is the list of our "village" friends and a big thank you to everyone who was involved in this project. My apology if I missed someone.
  • Jennifer, for designing the poster
  • Chris, Jeremy, Robert, Leona and Dave, Linda, Darla and That Special Touch and Lisa for the private donations
  • Rotary Club of Scarborough, Rotary Club of Belleville, Rotary Club of Trenton, Rotary Club of Cataraqui - Kingston,
  • Jamie Trudeau, for offering his house/garage (again) as our “head office”, storing and packing all the fur coats and delivering the boxes (pictured here in Ottawa with the boxes ready to be shipped).
It shows once again that we are stronger if we work together. I am very proud to know all these people and how this turned out. 😉
“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it.”
Thank You to the orchestra!
Fur Coat Drive Birgit Wartenberg 2023-12-15 05:00:00Z 0

Introduction of New Members

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President Peter Malone introduced two new members to the Rotary Club of Belleville.  The criteria -- if you have the love of your fellow men in your hearts, my friends, you are a potential Rotarian (quoted by Rotary's founder, Paul Harris in 1933).  Since 1905 when Paul Harris first met with three friends to discuss ideas, Rotary values have remained consistent and include integrity, a characteristic of strong leadership, leadership, using those skills to do good in the world, fellowship, by bringing together people who are inspired by their desire to give back and make a difference and service above self.
In Jared Bellemare (far right in the photo) and Davin Hanninen (middle of the photo), the newest members of the Rotary Club of Belleville, these characteristics are evident.  Be an adult who demonstrates good character, integrity and leadership.  Have a good reputation within your business or profession or community and be willing to serve in the community or around the world.  The Rotary Club of Belleville Board of Directors have approved these two members and so Peter welcomed them into a new, great adventure in friendship and in service to the community and to their fellow man.  Joining over 1.4 million Rotarians in over 200 countries, all united by the common "ideal of Service Above Self".  Tracey Vandervoort presented Jared and Davin with their name badge, Roster book, Rotary lapel pin and those present welcomed them to the Club.
Introduction of New Members Jared Bellemare and Davin Hanninen 2023-12-07 05:00:00Z 0

2023 Annual General Meeting

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President Peter Malone formally called to order the Annual General Meeting for the Corporation of the Rotary Club of Belleville at 12:10 p.m. on Thursday, December 7, 2023.  The agenda was approved by motion of Anya Deane Best, seconded by John Chisholm.  The Minutes from the 2022 AGM were approved by motion of Adrian Hilmi, seconded by Shannon Neely. 
The 2022-2023 audited financial statements were presented by Treasurer and President Elect Karen Baker and auditor Michael McMurray from Welch. LLP.  The audited financial statements were accepted as presented by motion of Ken Wheeler, seconded by Tracy Bray.
Approval of Welch LLP as Auditors for 2023-2024 Rotary Year was approved by motion of Dianne Spencer, seconded by Collin Myers.
The Amended Articles of Incoporation and Amended By-Law #1 were approved by motion of Karen Baker, seconded by Andrew Kole.
Past President Darrell Smith summarized the Rotary Year 2022-2023 and thanked all Rotarians for all they do to make the community, country and world a better place.  Their passion for others and Service Above Self is a hallmark for others to aspire to.  The Rotary Club of Belleville has achieved much during its 103-year history and the best is still to come for the impact the Club will have on those around us.  Darrell thanked everyone for their support and friendship and felt blessed to have the opportunity to lead the Club for two years.  Rotarians are truly the change they wish to see in the world as they live that every day and the community, local and global are beneficiaries of that service.
Adjournment was made by motion of Tracey Vandervoort, seconded by Tracy Bray.
2023 Annual General Meeting President Peter Malone 2023-12-07 05:00:00Z 0

Community Paul Harris Fellow Awards

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The Paul Harris Fellow Award is named after Rotary's founder, Paul Harris, a Chicago lawyer who started Rotary International with three business associates in 1905.  The Rotary Club of Belleville started shortly after in 1920.  There are ways that Rotarians can earn PHF recognition and there are a number of members who carry that recognition.  Rotarians can designate a Community Paul Harris Fellow recognition as a tribute to a person who is a non-Rotarian and whose life demonstrates a shared purpose with the core values of Rotary and who share a spirit of "Service Above Self".  President Peter Malone was pleased to have the honour and pleasure of recognizing three amazing individuals from within our community who do exactly that.  In alphabetic order.
Inspector Sheri Meeks, Belleville Police Service was nominated by Executive Director of The Children's Foundation and Rotarian, Melanie Cressman.  Melanie came to know Inspector Meeks through her volunteer work in the Belleville community.  She is well respected by anyone who has had the pleasure of working with her.  Melanie had the opportunity to witness Sheri's leadership in her former role at United Way.  Inspector Meeks was Campaign Chair for two years during the height of the pandemic, a time when most of the world was shutting down.  Sheri led her team of campaign volunteers to exceed goal, two years in a row.  The Belleville Community is a better place because of the work that Inspector Meeks does.  The list of volunteer/community Board involvement is a long one and includes the responsibility of Board Member for Big Sisters, Mental Health Support Network, Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee, United Way HPE Campaign Cabinet, Special Olympics Polar Plunge Chair, Pedal for Hope participant, 100 Women Who Care Quinte, Kids Got Talent judge, Victim Services, Children's Safety Village, Enrichment Centre for Mental Health.  Inspector Meeks' role at the Belleville Police Service also sees her very involved in associations and committees, locally and provincially, including areas of health and wellness, peer support, education, training and professional development, executive education, psychological resiliency, police response to persons in crisis and leadership planning. 
Rotarian Hazzem Koudsi was very pleased to introduce his nominated award winner Sarah Rozema-Seaton, the founder and CEO of Big Red Bow Digital Marketing.  Sarah's values are strongly aligned with all Rotarians and she holds true to Rotary's motto of Service Above Self.  Her involvement as a volunteer with many local charities is truly impressive.  Sarah has been involved with Habitat for Humanity Prince Edward Hastings with respect to fundraising events as well as with their website development.  Her expertise and support of their e-commerce platform improved Habitat's online and community presence.  Her efforts provided much needed resources for their build fund.  Sarah also assists as a board member with The Children's Foundation.  Her help in promoting various events such as the Guardian Angel Gala or the annual Radio-a-Thon results in increased community awareness and additional much needed funds for The Children's Foundation.  Sarah's help with the United Way HPE's annual giving campaign including the kickoff event and the close out party results in them reaching their goals.  The Trenton Memorial Hospital Foundation also receives the benefit of Sarah's contributions at all their events.  Recently Sarah joined the Strong Communities Campaign with the YMCA that focuses on raising much needed resources to improve and enrich the lives of thousands of children, adults, seniors and families.  Simply put Sarah meets all aspects of the four-way test of Rotary with the main focus on "will it be beneficial to all concerned?"  A resounding yes!
Heather Smith has been nominated by Steve Cooke, Executive Director of the Belleville General Hospital Foundation and it is interesting to note that Heather was a Paul Harris Community Award recipient in June 2013 from her father, a long time member of the Rotary Club of Belleville, Mac (Macdonald) Smith when he turned 90 and wanted to recognize his children on his special milestone birthday.  Fast forward ten years and Heather continues her illustrious career in fundraising for the Lung Association, University Hospitals Kingston, YMCA Central East Ontario and the Belleville General Hospital Foundation.  Heather held her CFRE, professional fundraising designation until her retirement in 2018 and has been an active life-long volunteer in Sudbury, Kingston, Ottawa and Belleville including the YMCA, RKY Camp, Ride for Dad and Inn from the Cold.  She has a vast experience in community endeavours, managing volunteers as a servant to the community.  In addition to what has been mentioned, Heather serves on the Belleville Police Services Board and is also on the provincial Executive Committee for Zone 2 of which Belleville is part.  She is is now the President of the Belleville General Hospital Auxiliary, having been a member for a number of years as well as a member of the Belleville General Hospital Foundation Board.  Heather has also held leadership positions in professional associations related to fundraising such as the Canadian Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Association of Fundraising Professionals.  Giving back to the community certainly runs deep in Heather's family and has done so for many, many years.  Heather's response to this award honour "Community service has always been important to our family.  Giving back means so much and we are grateful to be part of this loving community.  To be recognized is a real honour".
President Peter Malone rounded out the evening with a request for a final round of applause for the three Community Paul Harris Fellow recipients.  For all they do.  Very impressive indeed.  Peter also acknowledged three previous recipients in attendance -- June Rickard, Leah Johnson and Pat Guernsey. 
Community Paul Harris Fellow Awards 2023-11-30 05:00:00Z 0

Mayors of the Week 2023

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Past President Shannon Neely welcomed and introduced the four Mayors of the Week.  First up to speak was Chevy Omolade, a Grade 12 student at Eastside Secondary.  With her sights set on a career in policing in the future, Chevy was very grateful for the opportunity to connect with her community through this program and to see the important impact that people make on a daily basis.  Recognizing that it's the little things that matter, Chevy loves to drive downtown or take the city bus, go to the Santa Claus Parade, participate in Camp Molly, go to the arena to watch her younger brother play hockey.  After touring the city and the different departments, Chevy now knows that the Bridge Street bridge changes colour and that indeed, Belleville is a special place and thanked Rotary for the amazing memories of seeing everything first hand.
Harshita Srikanth, was the second speaker and is a Grade 12 student at Eastside Secondary as well.  She was extremely grateful to be able to participate in Mayors of the Week and to see all the job opportunities Belleville has to offer.  Thanks to Mayor Ellis for his calm composure and the time he took to explain everything.  Being a pizza person, Harshita very much enjoyed their lunch and the goody bags they were given by the different City departments as well as for the photos that were taken.  She thanked the fellow Mayors of the Week for their good questions.  Without having taken part in this program, Harshita would not have known what it takes to keep Belleville running smoothly.  She would definitely do it again and encouraged future students to take advantage if the opportunity was presented to them.
Shivani Narendranath, a student at Nicholson thanked everyone for their part in this program.  It was an incredible experience and one that will help her as she heads off to University to study politics.  All the questions that were asked by her and the fellow Mayors of the Week were answered in detail by each department they visited.  It was such a refreshing experience to see the community come together to explain everything that happens in running a city the size of Belleville.
Last, but not least, Ben Weinstein, a Grade 11 student at Albert College said he was very fortunate to have participated in this program.  He met interesting people and was very surprised to learn so much about Belleville that he didn't know, for instance, Belleville has an electric race car business.  Ben was surprised to learn that.  He enjoyed the water treatment tour and saw how water filtration and engineering is applied in real life versus learning about chemical reactions in school.   At the fire department, Ben was able to observe dispatch services which he found very interesting.  How the staff at the Wellness Center dealt with a major ice melting incident was impressive.  Ben thanked everyone for taking the time to meet with the Mayors of the Week, for the Rotary reps giving of their time to transport and accompany the students.
Tracy Bray thanked the students for their presentations and admitted this was her favourite day of the year, to hear them engaged in learning more about their City and their community.  Certificates were handed out.
Mayors of the Week 2023 2023-11-23 05:00:00Z 0

Wing Commander Colonel Leighton LLJ James

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The Rotary Club of Belleville welcomed 8 Wing Commander Colonel Leighton James to their lunch meeting on Thursday, November 9th along with Honorary Colonel Julie Ann Lange.  Introduced by Past President Shannon Neely who shared Colonel James' biography with the Club.  Colonel James earned his Canadian Air Force wings in 2004 after completing his bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Toronto.  During his career, Colonel James has conducted numerous search and rescue missions, served as Aircraft Commander, Pilot Leader and Hercules Flight Commander.  In 2009, Col. James became a pilot instructor at the Hercules Operational Training Unit at 8 Wing Trenton, eventually holding the position of Deputy Commanding Officer at the Squadron.  Col. James has also participated in numerous humanitarian missions within Canada and has been deployed internationally  both in Haiti and Qatar.  He was promoted to his current rank in 2015 after completing a master's degree in Defence Studies at the Joint Command and Staff College in Toronto.  Command of 424 Squadron involved saving the lives of citizens on a daily basis.  In 2020 Col. James was appointed as Joint Air Component Coordination Element Director at the Canadian Joint Operations Command and upon completion of the National Security Program at the Canadian Forces College in Toronto he subsequently was posted to CJOC as the Special Advisor to the Commander.  Honorary Colonel Julie Ann Lange was appointed  as Hon. Col. of 436 Transport Squadron at 8 Wing Trenton effective September 2015 in a four year term.  Hon. Col. Lange has been an active volunteer with the Quinte Regional Children's Foundation and founder of their "Helping Hands' program which led to her being honoured with the prestigious Guardian Angel Award.  She is the past chair of Quinte Hospice and past Treasurer and Board Member of Trenton Memorial Hospital.  Hon. Col. has supported numerous other charities and committees, raising funds for the Trenton Memorial Hospital and Wounded Warriors Canada and founding an education bursary for children and spouses of 436 Squadron members..  A proud supporter of Canada's military as the daughter of a Second World War veteran and granddaughter of a First World War veteran.  Welcome both today.
Colonel James pointed out that command is something very special, cannot be taken lightly or done pridefully.  It is an honour and must be done with humility.  Having said that, Col. James feels Canadians need to hear about the world's instability and its overall impact.  The world is a dynamic and fast changing place that is difficult to predict.  Just think about the past four years with a worldwide pandemic, record high interest rates, a traditional WWII style war of attrition in Europe, political polarization and now a hot war in the middle east.  The reality is that the places where you expect conflict are rarely where conflict emerges.  In 1924, Senator Raoul Dandurand said that "Canada is a fireproof house, far from flammable materials".  Oceans that separated Canada from Europe protected it from harm.  The developing industrial might of the U.S. to our south and the Arctic to the north meant that Canada was untouchable and this sentiment remains in Canadian DNA today.  All of this leads to a perception of being invincible.   Our adversaries know they cannot challenge western might on the battlefield, but they can challenge the power by fracturing our societies and this type of reflexive control is everywhere.  Democracy as a way of government is on decline and authoritarian regimes are on the rise.  Information has become more important than knowledge and knowledge more important than wisdom.  In 1968 Walter Cronkite was a trusted deliverer of unbiased news, but today, that trust is difficult to identify.  We must acknowledge that geography is no longer enough to protect our interests.
The close to 5,000 people at 8 Wing touch everything that happens in the Canadian Armed Forces.  Another way of saying that is to say that everything that happens in the world, happens to 8 Wing.   The 39 units in total at 8 Wing cross all components and aspects of our military.  With a budget of around 170 million and a salary base of around 260 million, the wing contributes approximately 350 million dollars in direct and indirect economic benefit to our community.  8 Wing is the cornerstone of CAF operations.  But the most valuable resource is the people that consist of 8 Wing.  Our recent interventions in Israel evacuated 1600 people, launched at a moment's notice from across vast distances.  Trusted to serve is one of three guiding and foundational principles.  In these challenging times we have soldiers, sailors and aviators who rely on the community's support systems.  The members of the military are people too, with family challenges, medical challenges, financial challenges and all of the demands that life puts on members of our society.
The Royal Canadian Air Force will be celebrating 100 years of history in 2024 and a number of significant events in the local area will be held.  One hundred years later, let us remain vigilant in our focus and in our desire to keep Canadians safe, protected, cared for and nurtured.  Let's get the message out that we are no longer in a fireproof house, but together we have Canadians' backs.  Rotarian Mark Musca thanked Colonel James for a life dedicated to lifelong service and for taking the time to speak to the Rotary Club of Belleville today.
Wing Commander Colonel Leighton LLJ James 2023-11-09 05:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk

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Rotarian Terry Thomas was very pleased to introduce one of the Club's newer members, Andrew Kole, to present his classification talk and share a little about his life story with the Rotary Club of Belleville. Terry emphasized the importance of Rotarians being fully engaged, living the Service Above Self motto, committed to participating in the activities and initiatives of Rotary.  That is what Terry sees when he looks at Andrew Kole.  The only shortfall Terry sees is Andrew's reluctance to actually dress up like a Clown in the Santa Claus Parade, but there is still time to convince him otherwise.
Andrew was born in 1983 in the vibrant City of Dnipro, right in the heart of Central Ukraine.  Both his parents were dedicated pediatricians and to us that would mean a life of relative comfort, but not so in Ukraine as part of the Soviet Union.  Andrew's childhood coincided with the collapse of the USSR, bringing about a complete economic meltdown and collapse of the only bank in town.  Lifetime savings were no more, poor people became poorer.  There were widespread shortages of basic necessities and consumer goods.  Amidst the turmoil of everyday existence, Andrew spent his time playing soccer, a way of life at the time in Ukraine.  And while Andrew was spending time at soccer, his mom, with unwavering determination, took the opportunity to relocate to Canada, Halifax more specifically in 2003.  Andrew was 19 and his parents had been separated for seven years.  Andrew did return to Ukraine to complete his university education but joined his mom in 2006 permanently.  Finding a job proved challenging and working at a call center, although not Andrew's first choice, did provide him with a platform to enhance his proficiency in the English language.  Andrew focused on expanding his academics, obtaining a college diploma and an undergraduate degree in accounting, securing his CPA and CMA designation and then his MBA from Laurentian University in 2022.  Proudly, he became a Canadian citizen at this same time, changing his name officially to Andrew Kole, the Canadian version of his former name in Ukraine.
Through baseball in Kingston, Ontario, Andrew finally felt like he belonged and became long time friends with an extraordinary group of individuals, one who became his best man.  This sport opened many doors for Andrew and he is grateful for those opportunities.  What Andrew thought was merely a photo of him in his soccer uniform turned out to be a work of magic for his dating profile and that is how he met Julie, his lovely wife.  They became engaged in 2019 and after planning a 2020 wedding six months later, found COVID interrupted their well laid plans and they delayed until 2021 on a very wet, rainy day in September.  Andrew is thankful that Julie introduced him to Rotary, as she was a member of the Stirling Rotary Club and is very involved to this day, with a slight step back with the birth of their son Leo in April 2022.  Jo-Anne Wheeler invited Andrew to a Rotary meeting and he finally joined in August 2022.  Since joining, Andrew has worked with the International Service Committee, the Rotary Loves Trees team, the budget committee and most recently, Clowns for Kids.  A great adventure so far and Andrew is very excited to see what Rotary Refresh brings to the forefront.
Andrew and Julie have proudly assisted Ukrainian newcomers to the Quinte region, displaced by the conflict in their homeland in finding local employment opportunities, acquiring clothing and essential household items, securing transportation, obtaining driver's licenses, crafting job applications.  Recently, they helped to organize a community gathering for local Ukrainians residing in this area, aimed to foster connections among the newcomers, to share their stories, exchange experiences and provide emotional support to each other.  There were around 80 people in attendance and the Rotary Club of Belleville donated $500 towards food for the people.  Andrew extended a sincere thank you again for the Club's invaluable support.  Today, Andrew proudly holds the role on the senior management team of a family-owned business, one that is firmly rooted in Belleville and boasts a 35 - year legacy of helping eastern Ontario organizations attain their business objectives through technology in the area of document management and business process automation.
Tracy Bray thanked Andrew for his presentation today and presented him with his new blue badge (instead of his newcomer red badge).  Welcome to Andrew.  We are looking forward to meeting his son Leo soon.
Classification Talk Andrew Kole 2023-10-26 04:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

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On October 24th, World Polio Day, Belleville Rotarians and friends of Rotary planted 675 tulips in 44 minutes at the Children of Hope parkette in the City of Belleville at Pinnacle Street and Station Street, apparently a record of feat and diligence.  World Polio Day addresses global health issues, a vital focus of Rotary's work in the world.  Rotary's Polio Plus initiative supports vital vaccination campaigns and health care infrastructure to keep communities healthy.  Next spring when we see the tulips beautifying our local area, we will think about the work that Rotary does here and abroad and their focus to eradicate polio everywhere.....and they are 99% there!
World Polio Day Terry Thomas 2023-10-24 04:00:00Z 0

District Conference Achievements

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The District 7070 Conference was held on the weekend of October 21st through October 23rd in Oshawa and Rotarian Dr. Ruth Mathieson was one of the guest speakers.  She spoke about the work at the Matangwe Hospital in Kenya, Africa and the District was so impressed with the presentation, that Dr. Ruth was provided with a $9,000 District Grant for the projects being carried on at Matangwe.  During the question and answer portion of her presentation, an attendee at the Conference came up to the microphone and presented Dr. Ruth with $1,000 towards her next District Grant.  Much needed funding and good work by Dr. Ruth for many, many years..
At the District Conference, the Rotary Club of Belleville also received a District Grant of $4,125 to be used towards a YMCA Developing Young Leaders program for camp counsellors.  An initiative to build future leaders.....and hopefully Rotarians.
District Conference Achievements 2023-10-21 04:00:00Z 0

Wiggle Waggle Walk

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Here we are at the Humane Society's Wiggle Waggle Walk at Zwick's Park on October 15th.  Lots of participants, lots of dogs and lots of fun!  Pictured are President of the Rotary Club of Belleville Peter Malone, Literacy Chair Sharon McConnell, Director Collin Myers and JC Charles D'Armour of the Humane Society and Rotary's contact with the Rotary Rescue Readers program.
Our Club is developing an alliance with The Humane Society's Rescue Readers program, where literacy skills are promoted through organized sessions of school-age children visiting the Shelter and reading to the animals.
Thanks to those Rotarians who donated to this event.  Donations are still coming in, but in all, close to $700 was raised and put towards this program.  A great first start and we'll be looking to expand for next year!
Wiggle Waggle Walk Sharon McConnell 2023-10-15 04:00:00Z 0

KIDS Against Hunger

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Chair of Kids Against Hunger, Jennifer Savini, had nothing but good things to say about the food packing event that took place at Loyalist College on Saturday, October 14th.  See any familiar faces?  Just some of the great volunteers who packed more than 18,000 meals destined for places near and afar.  A concerted effort to improve food security.  The demand is high!  Well done.  As in the past, Jennifer's family were out in full force, her children and her spouse (a great organizer and lots of fun I might add) and of course, Jennifer right in the middle of the action. 
KIDS Against Hunger Jennifer Savini 2023-10-14 04:00:00Z 0


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The purpose of Refresh Rotary includes giving direction to the Rotary Club of Belleville for the next 100 years.  The membership have identified what matters most, that being giving back locally and internationally, socializing, engaging and enjoyable activities.  Rotarians Janeen Halliwell and Paul Fleming lead the process and conducted an online survey earlier in 2023, followed by an in-person working session in May.  Emerging themes included:
  • It's time to change
  • Recruiting new members
  • Engaging existing members
  • Meetings
  • Satellite Club
  • Focus and clarity
  • Awareness
Some steps to work towards these themes have already happened.  Social time at the beginning of meetings has been reintroduced, Happy Bucks has returned, the room has been reconfigured for better interaction, meeting updates are shared between lunch and evening meetings, agenda items are shared to ensure success stories are front and center, land acknowledgement has been introduced, prayer is now a gratitude and light-hearted humour brings a smile.  A bulletin board highlighting important dates, guests and Call to Action is visible at every meeting.  Marketing material has been updated.  The Rotary tent and promotion material is now in use and available at all events.  Early discussions are in progress with respect to the website.  Rotary apparel will be available shortly and more fellowship events such as Trivia, Winter Games, Wiggle Waggle Walk spread the fun of being a Rotarian.  Business cards have been developed to encourage prospective members to meet people of action, be inspired and inspire others, make new friends and make a difference through the Rotary Club of Belleville.
A Refresh Rotary Working Group will develop recommendations to the Board for consideration and approval to begin to revisit and refine the purpose of the Rotary Club moving forward, with an eye to redesign the way in which members work together.  Linked with the Club's Strategic Plan, there are three main areas of focus -- public image - fundraising - membership development that will take some time and thoughtful process to work through over a multi-year approach.  Members of the Refresh Rotary Working Group are Tracey Vandervoort, Peter Malone, Janeen Halliwell, Ruth Mathieson, Cristina Cadavid Gamble, Peter Coy, Karen Baker and John Smale.
Janine encouraged everyone's feedback and opinions so that the work we do is in the best interest of the Club.  There will be mini-surveys to come and participation is essential to this long-term process.  Thank you to everyone!
REFRESH ROTARY CLUB UPDATE Tracey Vandervoort 2023-10-12 04:00:00Z 0

Ukrainian Get Together

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Dear Rotary International Service Committee,

We hope this email finds all of you well. We are writing on behalf of our local Ukrainian community to share some wonderful news about our recent event, which took place on October 7th, 2023. Thanks to your generous support, this event was an overwhelming success.

First and foremost, we are delighted to report that the event saw close to 80 attendees, the vast majority of whom were recent Ukrainian newcomers displaced by the war in their home country. It was heartwarming to witness the connections and friendships that were forged throughout the day. Your contribution of $500 played a pivotal role in making this event a reality, and we are immensely grateful for your support.

We received a great deal of positive feedback from the event attendees, and we wanted to share some of their comments with you which I had translated for you from Ukrainian:

- "Thank you for a great event! Ukrainians, you are amazing!" - Victor, event attendee. 

- "A huge thanks to everyone who organized, sponsored and attended this event! You have done so great! to see all the smiles - it was heartwarming. I was so happy to see everyone. Can't wait for next time!" - Yulia, another attendee.

- "Thank you all! I had a great time meeting and talking to everyone. It was so good to see that there are so many of us here. It was such a great idea to bring everyone together! " - Mariana, a mother who attended with her children.
- " It is difficult to overestimate the importance of this event.  Having left Ukraine, most of us left there our friends and faith in goodness. On Saturday there was an understanding of how many friends had gathered together and that good in the world would definitely win. Thank you very much to the Rotary Club for your support, thanks to it, gathered everyone who wanted to attend the event, your support made more than 80 hearts of Ukrainians kinder and happier." - Denys Bulyshev, event organizer, attended with wife and 3 children. 

We believe that your support had a profound impact on the well-being and integration of the Ukrainian newcomers in our community. By helping to create this welcoming and inclusive space, you've made a lasting difference in their lives.

Once again, thank you for your unwavering support and commitment to our community. Your belief in our cause has truly made a difference, and we look forward to the possibility of working together again in the future.If you have any further questions or would like to discuss future collaboration, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. Your support means the world to us and to the Ukrainian families who benefited from this event.

Warm regards,

Andrew Kole, Julie Obstfeld, Denys Bulyshev, et al.
Ukrainian Get Together  2023-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

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National Day for Truth and Reconciliation is a day for all Canadians to commemorate the history and legacy of the residential school system and Chief R. Donald Maracle came to share some of that history and legacy with the Rotary Club of Belleville at their lunch meeting on Thursday, September 28th.  R. Donald Maracle has served as Chief of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte for 30 years and for 12 years as Councillor before that.  As Chief on the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, Maracle has successfully advocated for his community and directed its revitalization as an economically and culturally vibrant nation.  Chief Maracle has always been a dedicated, passionate and respectful leader and takes seriously his nation's founding role in the establishment of the great Silver Covenant Chain of Friendship Proclamation of 1763.  He is committed to the future of that relationship and to always strengthening and brightening the Chain since, as Haudenosaunee tradition tells us "this relationship will be everlasting.  It is for all present and future generations.  it shall stand as long as the sun shines upon the earth; as long as the waters flow; and as long as the grass grows green.  Our relationship shall be binding, as long as Mother Earth is in motion".
Chief Maracle walked the audience through history when the first trade agreements were reached and the priority was to live in peace and harmony.  The lucrative fur trade was the back bone of the Indigenous people, but once tapped out, history shifted and disease and death came, followed by land frauds, rum running, alcohol and the pressure of colonization caused much conflict to the Indigenous people and their land.  Residential schools were open and children were taken from their families and institutionalized, unloved and separated from the influence of their families and identity.  There were 128 residential schools, housing 150,000 Indigenous people and the children suffered cultural abuse and many died.  There was no respect for the original people of our country.  Brothers and sisters in the residential schools were not allowed to speak to one another, boys and girls were kept separate.  It was a very sad time for Chief Maracle's family as his grandfather was raised in a residential school.  The children were not loved and that lack of grounding and nurturing has affected many, many families and will continue to affect generations to come.
Chief Maracle has heard many stories and there is no answer to why this happened.  Not only has Chief Maracle had to learn about his aunt's death in the residential school just before her 16th birthday with no records as to where she was buried, a deep personal loss for the family and grief that may never mend.  Chief Maracle advocates for making a better future that will take everyone to make a difference and adding a rider to the pages of history.  He is hopeful for answers to his questions.  It will take more than Orange Shirt Day to make a difference, but it is a small step in the right direction.  There is still much poverty in Indigenous communities, no running water, but organizations such as Rotary can be partners to initiate change, real change.
National Day for Truth and Reconciliation 2023-09-28 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Loves Trees

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Rotary Loves Trees (RLT), a project by the Rotary Club of Belleville helped lead a great community effort September 23th to support the local environment.  Rotary Loves Trees and its planting partners, the City of Belleville Green Task Force, Quinte Conservation and TD Tree Days planted 500 trees in Township Park.  In total over 100 volunteer planters helped with the planting.  Supporting the environment is one of Rotary International's Areas of Focus for its efforts to Create Hope in the World.  Rotary Loves Trees was launched in 2020 to help celebrate the 100th birthday of the Rotary Club of Belleville with the goal of planting 50,000 trees in the City.  Todate RLT has directly planted just over 6,000 trees and its planting partners have contributed almost 5,000 more.
The Rotary Club of Belleville was founded in 1920 and is an integral part of the local community and connected to more than 1.4 million, dedicated and proud Rotarians doing incredible work in the name of positive peace who create hope in the world.  Rotarians are people of action who love fellowship and fun and look to make a positive impact in the community and around the world.  Interested in becoming a member?  Visit www.rotary-belleville.org.
Rotary Loves Trees 2023-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Porchfest 2023

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Throngs of music lovers were treated to a variety of musical genres by local residents and friends, performing on front porches and lawns of homes in the Old East Hill during the day on September 23rd and then into the After Party Downtown Belleville.  This was PORCHFEST 2023, organized by the Belleville Rotary Club under Committee Chair and Past President, Sam Brady, the City of Belleville and many, many willing homeowners and their porches and property.  Andy Forgie performed his annual children's concert at Robin Jeffrey Park starting at 10:00 a.m., followed by official opening ceremonies at 12:45 p.m. at Glanmore National Historic Site.  Porchfest is now in its 14th year in the City of Belleville, having transitioned to the Rotary Club of Belleville from its founders Ken Hudson and Lucinda Pritchard in 2009.  Generously sponsored by The Rotary Club of Belleville and the City of Belleville.
Porchfest 2023 2023-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Valley River Reserve Baseball Project

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Birgit Wartenberg would like to thank everyone on the IPPC cluster team for your tremendous work, effort and dedication to make the baseball equipment project such a huge success.  We shipped baseball equipment for approx. 35 kids and 5 adults !!!
It takes a "village" to pull this off. Here is the list of our "village" friends and a big thank you to everyone who was involved in this project. My apology if I missed someone.
  • Colleen Gray, Art For Aid, she and her volunteers packed 13 boxes of art supplies
  • Robert, who drove 2.5 hrs (one way) to pick up the boxes from Art For Aid and deliver to Belleville
  • Jennifer, for designing the poster
  • Nadine, Chris, Jennifer, Michael, Margaret, Lisa, Jo-Anne, Jason & Canadian Tire Belleville, Bruce & Mackay Insurance for their private donations of gentle used & new equipment
  • Rotary Club of Belleville, Rotary Club of Trenton, Rotary Club of Palgrave, Rotary Club of Cataraqui - Kingston, Rotary Club of Stirling for their financial support to purchase baseball equipment
  • True North Aid, who offered to pay for the shipping costs and donated 5 boxes of school supplies
  • Jamie, for offering his garage (again) to store and pack all the equipment & moving the boxes to the warehouse in Trenton
  • Larry from Rebound, where we purchased the equipment, for donating a huge box of hockey skates on top of the baseball donations
It shows once again that we are stronger if we work together. I am very proud to know all these people and how this turned out after a lot of ups and downs.   😉
“No one can whistle a symphony. It takes an orchestra to play it.”
Valley River Reserve Baseball Project IPPC Chair Birgit Wartenberg 2023-09-20 04:00:00Z 0

37th Fun Fellowship Golf Day

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From President Peter Malone -- hello all and big thank you for a wonderful golf outing and dinner at Trillium Woods yesterday.
Big well done to the prize winners and for the generosity of our host, Past President Steve McCurdy for awesome prizes.
Special shout out to guests, it means a lot to Rotarians that you would give your time to be a part of our world. Thank you.....
Please feel free to share any pictures and here's looking forward to another day.
37th Fun Fellowship Golf Day 2023-09-13 04:00:00Z 0

Public Image Presentation

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Hazzem Koudsi, Director of Public Image presented the Rotary Club of Belleville Communications Strategy to the members and supporters of the Club after having worked with a small group of folks to develop a plan going forward with the primary objective to clarify a powerful brand and public image that will engage and motivate both members and public to join Rotary with enthusiasm in achieving Rotary's service goals.  One major way to increase potential membership and awareness of the good work Rotary does within the community is to clearly articulate the impact the Club has through various committees in the community.  A lovely meeting held in the Corby Rose Garden on a perfect day of sunshine.
Rotary members believe we have a shared responsibility to take action on the world's most persistent issues.  The 46,000+ clubs work together to promote peace, fight disease, provide clean water, sanitation and hygiene,save mothers and children, support education, grow local economies and protect the environment.  Rotarians see differently, think differently, act responsibly and make a difference at home and around the world.
The Rotary Club of Belleville has existed for more than 100 years.  The community it serves has benefitted from its efforts during its storied history.  Over the years the community has come to know and love Rotary's brand for its believe in "Service Above Self".  As we move into the future, it is important to assess whether the Rotary Club is meeting the members' expectations so that they remain engaged and continue to be involved in the community.  A recent survey was conducted by People Minded Business (PMB) Partners, Paul Fleming and Janeen Halliwell (members of Rotary) for the purpose of gathering insights into what matters most to the Club's current members.
A priority was identified to generate awareness of Rotary in the community.  The Club should be seen as the leading service club in Belleville and be recognized for its impact while hoping to inspire others.  Members want to celebrate Rotary's successes.  We are People of Action.  Goal and key audiences were identified as general public, prospective members, current members and media.  Six guiding principles were set down:
  • Brand Consistency - the look and feel of information shared should be consistent with established Rotary International guidelines.  The relevant information is found in the “Our Brand” section of the Rotary International website
  • Timely - the media advisements in advance of planned events should provide enough time for media outlets to attend events and immediately after events, media releases should be provided so there is time to go to print at the earliest opportunity.
  • Accessible - the Rotary Club uses Club Runner for its web presence.  That will increase the likelihood of generating more interest from the general public and prospective future members.  The website needs to be user friendly and following branding guidelines.
  • Concise - establish hierarchy and importance for website content.  Critical, high level information should be placed at the top of the page
  • Engaging - action-oriented photographs should be used to connect Rotary to real-life situations and demonstrate the impact of the work Rotary does
  • Impact - help people understand how the Club's activities support stronger communities and create a better world.
The Rotary Club has a variety of tools that will guide us towards improving our Public Image and demonstrate that we are People of Action including event precis, brochures, print ads, info cards, social media.  And then there are clear and obvious measures such as new members, increased participation at events, increased revenues, increased media exposure and increased member satisfaction.  Using these tools either in isolation or in combination will only bring a positive image for the Rotary Club of Belleville.
Public Image Presentation Director Hazzem Koudsi 2023-08-31 04:00:00Z 0

My Health Journey

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Rotarian Dave Albert introduced today's guest speaker, his daughter-in-law, Sarah Albert who shared her health journey and her association with the Kidney Foundation and their vision to achieve excellent kidney health, optimal quality of life and a cure for kidney disease.  During her pregnancy in 2020, Sarah experienced many problems with swelling, high blood pressure and excessive fatigue along with a number of complications.  But she did not give up and her son was born three months early in December 2020, a healthy, perfect 3 lb. little boy.  Following birth and testing, it was revealed that Sarah's kidney function was failing due to atypical hemolytic-uremic syndrome (aHUS), a disease that often affects kidney function.
The numbers kept dropping, even with medication to keep her kidneys working.  By the summer of 2021, Sarah's kidneys were functioning at 9 percent, she started dialysis and was placed on a list to receive a kidney transplant.  Sarah had an angel close by and her future sister-in-law Tera gifted Sarah a kidney and on September 2022 at KGH, the transplant surgery was conducted.   With emotion, Sarah said Tera gave her back her life and she gave her back her spirit.  Mentally and emotionally, Tera saved Sarah in many ways.  Sarah can now be who she wanted to be, a mom that she is today.  Everyone needs a Tera in their life. 
Dr. Khaled Shamseddin of KGH said we are born with two kidneys, but we can live with one.  Living donors, like Tera, go through a stringent educational and health screening process to ensure that they understand the commitment and that they are healthy and suitable for the program, posing "no major risk" to their future wellness.  Vera was recently told she is the "poster child" for living donors.  Now Sarah is able to give back to her community, to the care and compassion she received during her serious medical condition.  She is solidly behind the Kidney Walk, to take place in Kingston on September 24th.  Her team is called It Takes Lives To Save Lives.  Anyone wishing to support Sarah and donate to the work of the Kidney Foundation can visit kidneywalk.ca and look for her team page.  Sarah also provided pamphlets on organ donations and information on how kidneys work and how to keep them healthy and why they are so important.  In addition to the walk, Sarah is a patient advisor at KGH, sharing her story and supporting others going through scary health issues.  Quite the warrior as described by Tracy Bray who thanked Sarah for her very emotional presentation, with a happy ending.
My Health Journey Sarah Albert 2023-08-17 04:00:00Z 0

Paul Harris Fellow Award

Past President Ken Dickson presented his spouse, Vida Baltutis with a Paul Harris recognition in the way of a Paul Harris Fellow Award, citing 50 years of her support to him through all his Rotary endeavours.  For decades of work with special needs folks and at the same time being a great mom and grandmother along with many other facets of community service.  For her substantial contributions and a life that demonstrates shared purpose, it was a honour and pleasure for Ken to recognize Vida with this very special award.  For all of her tireless efforts, Vida has helped create hope in the world and has supported Ken's long journey in Rotary.
Paul Harris Fellow Award Ken Dickson 2023-08-17 04:00:00Z 0

Land Acknowledgement

With support from Chair Birgit Wartenberg and the Indigenous Peoples Partnership Cluster committee, the Board of Directors passed a motion to include a land acknowledgement into the Thursday meeting format.  We understand how important this is to many and trust we have been able to define a simple yet respectful statement. 
We acknowledge that we are on the traditional lands of the Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee people and express our gratitude to them for allowing us to live and learn on their land.
Land Acknowledgement 2023-08-17 04:00:00Z 0

Three Oaks Foundation Playground

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Donors from the Rotary Club of Belleville pooled their resources to get a new playset for the Three Oaks Foundation.
The purchased equipment will allow the children residing in Second Stage Housing the opportunity for enrichment and play, Harold Brennan, Rotary Club member, said in a press release.

“It’s nice to be able to help Three Oaks with play equipment that brings some sense of normalcy to difficult familial situations these children are experiencing," Brennan said.  "Play is the foundation of youth and we at Rotary are happy that we could help these kids experience the joy of play."

Patricia Sokoloski, interim Executive Director thanked the Rotary Club for the donation that allowed them to "create a beautiful playground."  "This is a perfect place for children to engage in free play, be creative, explore their imagination and improve their well-being," Sokoloski explained.  The Three Oaks Foundation is very grateful to be given this grant to build something that alleviates stressors for both children and mothers.” 

Hazzem Koudsi, volunteer Director with the Rotary Club noted how rewarding it is for members of the Rotary Club to see their club contribute towards charitable organizations in the community, like Three Oaks, and have such a positive impact with children that need this type of support.

Three Oaks Foundation is a Shelter and Services for Abused Women and their Children.  Three Oaks has been serving vulnerable women and children in Hastings & Prince Edward County since 1983.  Three Oaks provides safe shelter, 24hr crisis line, Second Stage Housing, Outreach, Children’s Outreach, Family Court Support, Transitional Housing Support and Training and Education. 

The Rotary Club of Belleville was founded in 1920 and is an integral part of our local community and connected to more than 1.4 million dedicated and proud Rotarians doing incredible work in the name of positive peace who create hope in the world. Rotarians are people of action who love fellowship and fun and look to make a positive impact in our communities and around the world.

Three Oaks Foundation Playground 2023-08-08 04:00:00Z 0

Family FunFest Concert

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Brenda Snider, Chair of Community Grants, shared how a $1,000 grant this Spring was given to the Quinte Symphony Spring Fun Fest.  The event was designed to inspire young people to play instruments and become involved in the music.  Children were allowed to volunteer to "conduct" the orchestra and older youth were allowed to participate and play along.  Afterwards, people were invited to chat with the musicians and examine their musical instruments closely and even to be given some instructions on how to set your sights on being a Maestro.  Nancy Lewis, President of Quinte Symphony Board of Directors thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville for their contribution.
Family FunFest Concert 2023-08-07 04:00:00Z 0

Indigenous Peoples Partnerships

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Rotarian Jamie Trudeau introduced Birgit Wartenberg, Chair of the Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Committee.  Birgit moved to Prince Edward County and shortly after in 2009, joined the Rotary Club of Belleville, participating on a number of committees, eventually taking over International Service and establishing a network of Rotary Clubs with a focus on Indigenous organizations and how Rotary could get more involved.  With her drive, energy, ideas and drive to get things done, Birgit has created a cluster of five Rotary Clubs -- the Rotary Clubs of Belleville, Trenton, Wellington, Palgrave and Cataraqui Kingston.  The vision of the Cluster is building trust with the indigenous communities, fostering community involvement meaning they have ownership of the results and seeking to develop personal contacts and friendships.  The partnership with the Indigenous communities is about what the people want and what their priorities are, rather than what we think they need.
The Committee has been very busy and Birgit provided background on their projects.  The Fort Albany project started in 2012 through a District Grant at a cost of $12,000 to install solar heat panels and bathroom exhaust fans, window film (for approximately 200 people), shipped and installed by trained locals and Rick Brant from Tyendinaga. In addition to the District Grant, six (6) Rotary Clubs contributed, including the Rotary Club of Belleville.  The group of Rotary Clubs then turned their attention to the John C. Yesno School in Fort Hope, gathering and sending hockey equipment, skates, sticks north so that the outdoor rink that had been built in the community with hours of volunteers at work and 16000 lbs. of lumber could be filled with happy children and youth, something they hadn't had for years.
Closer to home in Kingston, Ontario, Tipi Moza is the only aboriginal housing organization between Ottawa & Peterborough, providing housing but also helps with education and employment.  The Indigenous Peoples Partnerships provided back packs to the children, filled to the brim with school supplies as well as gift cards at Christmas for families in transitional housing.  In 2013, the Kids Against Hunger Committee, led by Birgit, packaged food that was sent to Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte Resource Food Centre, Sagamok First Nation and Wikwemikong, Manitoulin Island.
The Kairos blanket exercise is an interactive educational program that teaches the history of colonization in Canada. The program was created in response to the 1996 report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples and is used as a teaching tool across Canada.  A partnership with Art for Aid has seen the IPPC supply art items for schools in remote communities in Canada.  This initiative has been very well received in the northern communities.  The community of Nibinamik is remotely located 530 km north of Thunder Bay, 370 km northeast of Red Lake and 655 km northeast of Winnipeg and the committee has been actively involved in many aspects of need in this community, ranging from $1,000 GoFundMe page for the grade 7 & 8 students' trip to Toronto (pictured here), art supplies, baseball equipment, volleyball equipment, soccer balls, 100 pairs of socks, books in Ojibwe-Cree, tooth brushes (gift from Public Health), board games and laptops (80 laptops, iPads and phones!).  Just imagine Jamie Trudeau's garage full of these items before being shipped out.  On top of that, the EarlyAct Club of  Murray Centennial P.S. in Trenton, organized a movie night  in support of the students at the Nibinamik Education Center and raised $2,531. 40. The Rotary Club  Trenton added another $ 1,000.  The IPPC has provided Indigenous Professional Development Bursaries at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay and St. Lawrence College in Kingston and were very pleased when one of the recipients, Kaycie Brant, was chosen as the Valedictorian 2023 at St. Lawrence in the Community and Justice Services program.  Kaycie has been accepted to the Bachelor of Arts in Justice Studies at Royal Roads University.
These are not all of the initiatives that the Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Cluster have been involved with, but certainly supports how busy this cluster committee is and how hard the Rotarians work.  Rotary Club of Belleville members, Birgit Wartenberg, Jamie Trudeau and Timbrell Meehan are front and center and Chair Birgit thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville for supporting these initiatives and providing an opportunity to share some of the stories.  Birgit was thanked by Rotarian Chris Finkle who impressed everyone by thanking her in German, for spearheading these humanitarian projects and giving of herself 100%.  Labour intensive, but so effective.  Creating hope in the world.
Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Birgit Wartenberg 2023-08-03 04:00:00Z 0

District Governor John Burns

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Another Rotary Year is off to a very busy start and at the July 20th lunch meeting, the Rotary Club of Belleville welcomed District 7070 Governor John Burns (pictured here with Rotary Club of Belleville President Peter Malone) and Assistant District Governor Sandi Ramsay. ADG Sandi Ramsay is known in the community for her involvement as the Donor Relations and Communications Manager with Hospice Quinte.  In this role, Sandi was instrumental in helping to raise $9.2 million in order to bring the Stan Klemencic Care Centre to fruition.  The Rotary Club of Belleville is a proud contributor, having donated $25,000 in 2021.  Sandi is also a volunteer with the Trenton Memorial Hospital, Lower Trent Conservation and Loyalist College.  She is currently Chair of Government Relations for the Association of Fundraising Professionals (South Eastern Ontario Chapter) and a member of the Board of Directors for the Belleville and District Chamber of Commerce.  Sandi is a member of the Rotary Club of Trenton and Past President 2021-2022 and a big supporter of club collaborations and the Rotary Club of Belleville is looking forward to working with her this coming year as Assistant District Governor.
Sandi introduced District 7070 Governor John Burns, originally from Scotland and now a proud Canadian.  John is married with two children, lives in Wilmot Creek in Newcastle and retired in 2014 which has provided him with more time to devote to Rotary as well as his own community, volunteering being a huge part of his and his wife's life.  That and a little golf and travel when time permits.
District Governor John Burns has a new role as Special Agent 7070 and shared some highlights of the Rotary International Conference where he attended International Assembly Training with 500 District Governors from around the world.  With everyone wearing their national dress, it was a spectacular array of colour and diversity.  John wore his Scottish regalia as did RI President Gordon McInally.  To quote RI President, a message for all Rotarians "Let's create a new beginning.  Instead of closing the door on one year, let's build a bridge to the next one.  As long as a river flows, people will determine a way to cross".  Rotary has been handed the reins of leadership at a very opportune moment and historic time where Rotary has a chance to capture the world's attention.  Some of our best work may be supporting the efforts of others.  Rotary is about continuity, advancing the good ideas of leaders who came before us.  We have seen the continuity in years gone by as one Rotary President after another has made, kept and built on promises made.  DG Burns mentioned some of those continuity promises -- empower Rotaract and continue to support each other and work together; empowering girls to become strong, empowered women; expanding our reach in the areas of diversity, equity and inclusion, not just to  increase our numbers, but to ensure Rotary is an open and inclusive organization that embraces the best people, the best ideas and the best partnerships, no matter where we come from; continued focus on End Polio Now, supplying every resource available to succeed.
The 2023/2024 Rotary International Theme is CREATE HOPE IN THE WORLD.  When people have lost hope, not just in material things, but when they reach out and admit they need help, they are courageous and when Rotary helps others, we are helping ourselves.  Bringing hope benefits our own mental health and well-being, friendships are developed and a sense of community stands firm.  Our plans for the year ahead is to bring peace to the world, soothe those conflicted, help each other and our communities, end the stigma to ask for help and create hope.  We need to be open and willing to change and keep our focus on creating peace and hope and ensuring our actions are focused on achieving this plan.  We need to take the ordinary and achieve the extraordinary.  We are on this journey together.  Will you go with me is the question DG John Burns asked.
District Governor John Burns 2023-07-20 04:00:00Z 0

New Members 2023

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President Peter was very pleased to introduce the first new member of the 2023 Rotary Year, Cristina Cadavid Gamble. Peter was doubly proud because he proposed Cristina as a new member when he was President-Elect, a short week and a half ago.  Cristina has just recently accepted a new position at Community Development Council as their Fund Developer.  She has a background in culinary management and recently graduated from the Public Relations and Event Management program at Loyalist College.  Cristina and her husband Blair have two boys.  Born in Columbia, Cristina is fluent in Spanish.  In her spare time, Cristina has been known to tend bar at the Belleville Club.  Cristina's application was approved by the Membership Committee, the Board and by all the members of the Club so welcome!  Cristina was honoured to become a Rotarian and thanked everyone for their invitation and welcoming welcome.
New Members 2023 President Peter Malone 2023-07-06 04:00:00Z 0

A New Rotary Year

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Peter Malone as the new President of the Rotary Club of Belleville, thanked the Club first for the opportunity to attend the recent Rotary International Convention in Melbourne, Australia, a wonderful experience and a real inspiration that helped Peter connect all the Rotary dots.  Every piece we do as a Club, all has an impact and everything rolls up to positive peace.  Are we ready to go?  Hang on to your hats.  Peter first introduced the Board of Directors and provided an organizational chart.  Peter Malone as President; Jo-Anne Wheeler, Club Secretary; Tracy Bray although not on the Board is key to providing programs and organizing events; Karen Baker, President Elect; Tracey Vandervoort, Vice President, looking after Member Engagement; Darrell Smith is Past President, Rosi Ouellette, Treasurer; Hazzem Koudsi, Director Public Image; Heather Hall, Director Fundraising; Sam Reid, Director Environment and Sustainability, Brenda Snider, Director Community Service; Terry Thomas, Director International Service, Anya-Deane Best, Director Special Projects; Collin Myers, Director Fundraising.
Building on previous Club strategies, there are three main areas of focus that came out of Refresh Rotary -- Member Engagement and Growth, Public Image Development and Fundraising.  Vice-President Tracey Vandervoort will develop a strategy to engage members and will be responsible for continuing the momentum of Refresh Rotary by creating a sub-committee.  There will be an emphasis on fellowship and fun.  As far as membership drives, we are all Rotary Recruiters and responsible for encouraging people to join Rotary, make them feel welcome and mentor them along.  Director Hazzem Koudsi will be responsible for Public Image development through branding and a communication plan to capture all media platforms, locally and beyond.  We need to beat the drum of Rotary in the community.  If we elevate the Club's public image, we will elevate member engagement and that will elevate fund-raising.  Connect all the dots.  Directors Heather Hall and Collin Myers will look at ideas to increase fundraising efforts, establish innovative partnerships and Rotary collaborations and leverage grant opportunities.
To ensure effective and internal communication, committee chairs will report activities to their respective Director(s) so that this information can flow through to the Board as well as to all the members via Director presentations.  Internal communications will be strengthened by providing Clubrunner training, creating a notice board (already done and looking good!), promoting long range events and speakers and ensuring the bulletin or Rotopics is tied in with the Club's public image.  We will look at Rotary engagement on a local Club level as well as within the District 7070 and Rotary International.  Already thinking about the International Convention to be held in Calgary in 2025, a Rotary Club of Belleville contingent?
A thought to ponder:
  • Rotarians are people of action
  • Rotarians are people who GET things done
  • Rotarians don't need to be the people that do things
  • Rotarians get things done through advocating and inspiring others - with resources and expertise
Rotarian and Past President Ken Dickson thanked Peter, grateful that Peter's submarine found its way to the shores of Belleville.  We appreciate Peter's new ideas and new energy and are happy to support him as President for 2023/2024.
A New Rotary Year President Peter Malone 2023-07-06 04:00:00Z 0

District 7070 Awards

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Past District Governor Brenda Hellyer and a member of the Picton Rotary Club was very pleased to attend the District 7070 Awards event and to receive on behalf of the Rotary Club of Belleville, two awards which she is presenting today.  The first award presented to Past President Darrell Smith on behalf of the Rotary Club of Belleville was for the highest per capita contributions to the Rotary Foundation Programs for Rotary Clubs with over 100 members.  The second award, the Doctor Bob Scott Disease Prevention Award, was presented to Dr. Ruth Mathieson for making a significant contribution to disease prevention and treatment both in our district and beyond.  The awards were signed by RI District 7070 Governor Iosif Ciosa, 2022/2023 (L to R Brenda Hellyer, PDG and Dr. Ruth Mathieson)
President Peter Malone and Past President Darrell Smith presented Brenda with a token of appreciation from the Rotary Club of Belleville for her service as Past Assistant District Governor for 2022/2023.
District 7070 Awards Brenda Hellyer 2023-07-06 04:00:00Z 0

Ode To Incoming President Peter Malone

Rotarian and obvious poet laureate, David Allen scripted the following poem to recognize Peter Malone's Presidency, Rotary Club of Belleville as of July 1, 2023.
In the realm of service and leadership, we do find,
A man of distinction, with a heart so very kind
Peter Malone, our incoming Rotary President,
A soul devoted to making a positive precedent.
Beside him stands Suzanne, his loving wife,
A source of strength throughout his life.
Together they embark on a meaningful mission,
Guided by our Rotary Club's noble vision.
From the depths of the sea to the halls of might,
Peter worked on submarines, both day and night.
A testament to his dedication and skill,
A man of courage, who never knew still.
At PCM Global Solutions, he makes his mark,
Leading with wisdom, leaving no task in the dark.
His expertise, a beacon of hope,
Guiding the company's success, a worthy scope.
In the realm of Rotary, Peter's role transcends,
He organized a strategic refresh, where friendship mends.
With passion and commitment, he sets the stage
For a club united, a legacy to engage.
Trivia, a game that sparks his delight,
Though not really good at it, he enjoys the fight.
In knowledge and camaraderie, he finds his place,
Laughing and learning, always with a smiling face.
Scotch tasting, an indulgence he cherishes,
Savoring the flavours, his palate relishes.
A moment of leisure, a time to unwind,
In the company of friends, pure joy to find.
As past presidents explored Montreal and Toronto, both familiar lands
Lucky Peter journeyed to Melbourne, Australia with open hands.
Representing the Club with utmost pride,
Sharing Rotary's mission both far and wide
So let us celebrate incoming President Peter today,
A leader, a friend, guiding our Rotary Club the right way.
May his tenure be filled with triumph and glee,
As he works to leave a legacy for all of our community to see.
Ode To Incoming President Peter Malone David Allen 2023-07-06 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Trivia Night

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Rotary Trivia Night - Fun and Fellowship
On Thursday evening, June 29th, 32 eager participants met at the Belleville Club for a great evening, hosted by Rotarian David Allen, his wife Elaine and daughter Teresa.  Those in attendance for the event included 16 Rotarians and 16 Guests.  In a team challenge, 5 teams were given time to answer some pretty challenging questions, within various themes, including music, movies and of course, with the date being so close to Canada day, Canadian Trivia!  The first challenge the teams were given was to come up with a team name; creative names included "The Cool Kid’s Table", "The Rockin’ Rotarians”, "Ville Belle" and "The Group of Seven”.  Thank you to Rotarian Coreen Reynolds for allowing us to host this event at the Belleville Club.  It was a great event, and we hope to do this again at a future date.  Don’t miss it!
The team featured here seemed quite focused on solving the challenge before them.
Rotary Trivia Night 2023-06-29 04:00:00Z 0

President's Address

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President-Elect Peter Malone introduced Darrell Smith at his final hurrah as President of the Rotary Club of Belleville, breaking historical records fulfilling the role of President for the past two years.  A refreshing leader throughout the difficult days of COVID.

Darrell Smith thanked everyone who attended President's Night last week at Huff Estates, a wonderful evening with a sellout crowd.  Thank you to Tracy Bray for her leadership in organizing the event and Huff Estates for such a wonderful venue and food to help the celebration along.  Darrell started simply with saying thank you to the Rotary Club of Belleville for the very unique opportunity to have served as President for the past two years.  An experience he will cherish and remember for the rest of his life.

Some personal highlights of the evening included the ability to award Paul Harris Fellowships to Janeen Halliwell and Paul Fleming for their leadership in Refresh Rotary, presenting the Club's first installment to the YMCA Centre of Life for $40,000 to CEO Dave Allen and the awarding of Rotary Warrior pins to PE Peter Malone, Past President Tim McKinney and Vice-President/Treasurer Karen Baker for all their service to the Rotary Club of Belleville over the past two years.  Finally, through the support of the Rotary Foundation, Darrell was able to award three Paul Harris Fellows to very deserving ladies, who without all their help, support, friendship and encouragement, Darrel admits he would not have been able to make it through his term as President -- Past President Tracy Bray, Past President and Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler and Darrell's wife Carmen.

Darrell shared two of his most significant moments during the past Rotary Year.  Both have very different reasons for their importance.  The first was a phone call from Past President and Chair of the Quinte Rotary Music Festival, John Chisholm, sharing his feelings as they related to the most current budget process and funding for the Festival.  John expressed his frustration with the process and they spoke for 30 minutes plus, following which John agreed to remain on as Chair of the Rotary Music Festival.  This restored Darrell's faith in himself as a leader and the Club is indebted to John for his passion and service of this very important outreach for the Rotary Club of Belleville.

The second personal highlight that for Darrell, encapsulates our Rotary Year and all that it means about Service Above Self was Dr. Ruth Mathieson's presentation around our Global Grant, led by our Club in providing essential equipment and medical assistance to the Matangwe Hospital in Kenya.  It was not only the incredible effort that Dr. Ruth has put in directly in her outreach in other countries, but her passion for the well-being of all people and her tireless efforts, both within and outside the confines of the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Presenting an overview of her work at a recent lunch meeting, just shortly after the passing of her husband Bill shows Dr. Ruth's incredible strength of character and passion for humanitarian causes.  Dr. Ruth is the epitome of what Service Above Serve means and she is a true inspiration to each and every member of this Club.  We should all aspire to make a difference in our community, whether locally or globally to even a small scale of what Dr. Ruth has done.  Darrell admitted his emotion because he realized how truly impactful one person can be when they are determined to make the world a better place to live.

The success as a Rotary Club is not defined by any one person, but by a collective effort of many passionate Rotarians who are concerned not only about the well being of our community both locally and globally, but also the club itself through leadership on committees, events, participating in the democratic processes of approving budgets as well as special initiatives.  President Darrell thanked Rotarian Michael Summers for his continued technical expertise in facilitating our return to face to face meetings while providing a vehicle for those to attend virtually.  President Darrell thanked the Board of Directors - Terry Thomas, Tracey Vandervoort, Samantha Reid, Collin Myers, Anya-Deane Best, Brenda Snider, Heather Hall and Rosi Ouellette and the Executive of Past President Tim McKinney, President Elect Peter Malone, Treasurer Karen Baker and Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler for all their efforts and service above self.  It has been deeply appreciated.  Much is accomplished through our Club and Darrell mentioned all that has gone on before us in this Rotary Year and relayed his excitement as we move forward into a new era.  The best is yet to come and to quote Gandhi "be the change you want to see in the world".

To serve as President was a great honour and pleasure to Darrell and while not without challenges, he admits he is better for the experience and appreciated everyone's faith in him and the support offered to him by so many. Past President and Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler thanked Darrell for taking on year two as President, first time ever and not an easy task.  It takes time, effort and commitment.


President's Address Darrell Smith 2023-06-15 04:00:00Z 0

President's Night

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Incoming President Peter Malone welcomed everyone to Huff Estates Winery on Thursday to celebrate the two terms of outgoing president Darrell Smith.  Smith was the first president in Belleville Rotary Club history to serve two consecutive terms. Other presidents have served two terms before but never back to back.  Peter Malone thanked Darrell for his leadership and work and described Darrell as quietly confident as he led the Club for the past two years as President.

During the President’s Dinner, Darrell Smith gave a heartfelt speech where he thanked a number of Rotarians who helped make his time as president a success.  He first called Paul Fleming and Janeen Halliwell, recognized their exemplary work during the past twelve months, leading the Club through the Refresh Rotary program and providing amazing leadership and providing us with their expertise and skills during this process.  Darrell was very pleased to report that the Board of the Rotary Club of Belleville voted unanimously to recognize both Paul and Janeen with Paul Harris Fellows for their significant contributions to Refresh Rotary (pictured L to R, President-Elect Peter Malone, Paul Fleming, Janeen Halliwell and President Darrell Smith)

Darrell went on to recognize three Rotarians with the Rotary Warrior Pin, a recognition initiated by Past President Paul Vandegraaf, in recognizing significant efforts by Rotarians, much of those efforts taking place behind the scenes in enhancing the effectiveness of the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Pictured here being presented with the Rotary Warrior Pin are President Elect Peter Malone, Past President Tim McKinney and Vice President/Treasurer Karen Baker with President Darrell thanking them for their many hours of service to the Rotary Club of Belleville and their support and friendship along the way.

By supporting the Rotary Foundation as a Club as well as individuals supporting the Foundation, credits for every dollar that is contributed by the Rotary Club of Belleville can be used to award Paul Harris recognition points to other people.  Darrell took this opportunity to recognize three individuals for their support, encouragement, friendship and a little prodding as well during his tenure as President of the Club.  A Paul Harris Plus 3 was awarded to Tracy Bray, the Chair of the Special Needs Christmas Party, Co-Chair of Camp Merrywood as well as the Program Director for our lunch meetings as well as her participation and volunteering at many, many other Rotary events.

A Paul Harris Plus 2 was presented to Jo-Anne Wheeler with Darrell thanking her personally for all her help these past two years, to navigate the challenges that came their way, an encourager, a confidant and an incredible friend and supporter.  Beyond her role as Secretary of the Club, Jo-Anne works hard and way beyond the scope of her official role.

Finally and most importantly, President Darrell presented a Paul Harris Fellowship to his better half and love of his life Carmen, someone who believes not only in the value of volunteering herself, but also lives that reality in her own life along with the rest of Darrell's family.  He considers himself blessed.

During the event, Smith reflected on the past two years and all the club accomplished during them, from enduring the tail end of COVID lockdowns to many successful fundraisers.  “Now that I’ve seen so much, the club gain so much traction and so much enthusiasm, it’s almost tough to move out of that president’s position as you know we’re going to be so impactful in our community,” said Smith.  Smith isn’t planning on leaving the club.  While he is stepping down from the presidency, he plans to continue to be a part of the club’s ongoing activities.

During his speech to the gathered members, Smith took the time to announce the committed donation to the YMCA of Central East Ontario.  A cheque for $100,000 was presented to YMCA CEO David Allen as Rotary's commitment towards the organization’s capital campaign fundraiser to build the Centre for Life.  This represents the Rotary Club of Belleville's total contribution over the next three years, part of the 9 million dollar fundraising initiative that is being carried out by the YMCA.

The success as a Rotary Club is not defined by any one person, but by a collective effort of many passionate Rotarians who are concerned not only about the well being of our community both locally and globally, but also the club itself through leadership on committees, events, participating in the democratic processes of approving budgets as well as special initiatives.  President Darrell thanked the Board of Directors - Terry Thomas, Tracey Vandervoort, Samantha Reid, Collin Myers, Anya-Deane Best, Brenda Snider, Heather Hall and Rosi Ouellette and the Executive of Past President Tim McKinney, President Elect Peter Malone, Treasurer Karen Baker and Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler for all their efforts and service above self.  It has been deeply appreciated.  Much is accomplished through our Club and Darrell mentioned all that has gone on before us in this Rotary Year and relayed his excitement as we move forward into a new era.  The best is yet to come and to quote Gandhi "be the change you want to see in the world".


President's Night Darrell Smith 2023-06-15 04:00:00Z 0

Matangwe Hospital - District Grant

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Past President Tracy Bray introduced Dr. Ruth Mathieson, Co-Chair of the International Committee, a Rotarian who has touched many lives through Rotary and as a family physician in Belleville.  Dr. Ruth is steadfast and dedicated to helping people and has for many years, locally and all over the world.  Ruth took the lead on a District Grant for much needed equipment at the Matangwe Hospital in Kenya, Africa.  The hospital is located in an area of 10 km in radius with a population of 10,000 people, an area made of primarily of mud and rocks.  There is no road to speak of.  People live in poverty in a weak economy with fishing as their livelihood.  Ruth has visited and worked at the hospital a number of times since 2006, when HIV was rampant with 33% of the population suffering from the disease.  The mortality rate was high with thirteen deaths every single week when Ruth first went there.  Dr. Ruth went to work and an HIV clinic was built using two boxcars and a transportation van arrived in 2016, a second-hand van that had room for a stretcher and other medical items.  Following the pandemic, the community center re-opened as a delivery ward with six beds and specialized cots for premature babies, followed by a post-partem ward with an additional six beds.  The maternal mortality rate and infant mortality rate was the highest in the area and the WHO goal was to reduce maternal deaths from 695 per 100,000 live births to 70 and to reduce infant deaths from 111 per 1,000 live births to 12.  In 2021, 250 women delivered at Matangwe Hospital with professional help.  This represents 50% with the rest referred to a specialist, lost in follow-up or delivering at home with traditional birth attendance.  It became apparent it was safer to keep women at the hospital pre-birth, during birth and following birth. 
When Dr. Ruth applied for a District Grant, the cost of needed equipment came to $25,000 and included a glostavent anaesthetic machine @ $6,000, an oxygenator @ $2,500, oximeter @ $500 and resusitaire platform @ $1,500, O.R. light @ $4,500, a portable ECG machine @ $3,000, an isolette/incubator @ $3,000, two sets of surgical instruments and insurance and shipping.  Portable anaesthesia machines are in great demand for use in poorly resourced locations and by emergency response teams.  An oxygen concentrator generates 95% pure oxygen from room air.  These devices can ensure a reliable oxygen supply in hospitals instead of relying solely on cylinders of compressed gas.  The oximeter is a simple monitoring device that measure oxygen saturation in the blood stream to improve patient safety during anaesthesia.  Six (5) Rotary Clubs in Canada donated to the grant as well as District 7070 for a total of $19,000.  Los Altos California donated $5,000 U.S. Dollars for total monies raised of $25,700.
Dr. Ruth thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville for their support every time she visited Africa.  The money given to her went towards basic equipment such as thermometers, medication, blood pressure cups.  1.4 million people are infected with HIV, 4% being adults with 35,000 new cases each year, 78% of those people are on viral therapy and can live a normal life thanks to the work of so many in the medical field.
Rotarian Terry Thomas thanked Ruth for her tremendously moving presentation.  Healthcare and humanitarian needs are her passions, here and around the world.  This grant shows the power of Rotary.  Dr. Ruth has been able to do two District Grants at Matangwe and rounded up six Rotary Clubs in Ontario as well as one in California to support the grant project.  Ruth works very hard, made contacts, volunteered for over ten years at this hospital, used her expertise as a doctor to make connections with medical colleagues.  A great Rotarian at work. Learn from the best to help the most needy in the world.
Matangwe Hospital - District Grant Dr. Ruth Mathieson 2023-06-08 04:00:00Z 0

Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Bursary Program

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The Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Cluster just finished their 2022/2023 bursary program. The IPPC gave out 8 bursaries at $1,000.  The Rotary Club of Belleville selected two students.
Kaycie Brant - St. Lawrence College (the bursary was presented by the Rotary Club Cataraqui Kingston on Belleville's behalf, photo included here). Kaycie Brant is a Mohawk from the Tyendinaga reservation. She is a Mature, First-Generation student who has recently finished the Community and Justice Services Program at St. Lawrence College, and has been accepted to the Bachelor of Arts in Justice Studies at Royal Roads University.
Kaycie has faced many challenges as a single mother and the primary caregiver for her mother; however, she has shown dedication to her studies and her community. Kaycie attended a global learning opportunity in Ireland and has volunteered with Street Health. 
Kaycie's goal with continuing her education is to apply for Queens Law once she has completed her bachelor's degree with Royal Roads University. Kaycie has just been selected as this year's Valedictorian for St. Lawrence College.
Olivia Adams - Lakehead University (the bursary was presented by President Elect Sharon Hollinsworth of the Rotary Club Lakehead on Belleville's behalf)
“It is an honour to be chosen for the Indigenous Professional Development Bursary. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the Rotary Club of Belleville for the generous funding. Thanks to the financial support, I am able to continue my education and fulfill my dreams. 
This fall, I will be entering my fourth and final year of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at Lakehead University. Through my studies and experiences at Lakehead University (LU) and the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC), I have found my passion to make a difference in my community. 
At LU, I am a part of the Lakehead University Nursing Association (LUNA) and Lakehead University Scientists (LUS) Club. Firstly, the upcoming school year will be my four consecutive year with LUNA, in which I have recently been elected as a 4th year collaborative representative. My role and responsibilities include advocating for my classmates questions, comments, and concerns, sharing opportunities and resources, and providing support throughout the school year. Secondly, this upcoming school year will be my third consecutive year as a Co-Director for LUS. LUS focuses on the empowerment of self-identifying women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medicine (STEMM). My role includes assigning executive positions, delegating tasks, and planning events for throughout the school year. 
Also, in my current roles with the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) and LU, as an Infinite Reach Facilitator and Métis Student Liaison, I host and facilitate cultural and informative events to connect students to the local MNO community councils, and to the various programs, services, and events of the MNO and LU. 
In addition, at the TBRHSC I volunteer with the Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) and I am a member on the Volunteer Advisory Council. Firstly, my main responsibility in the HELP program is to assist in preventing delirium in hospitalized seniors by helping maintain cognitive and physical functioning throughout hospitalization. Also, I train and orient new volunteers to the HELP program. I ensure all trainees are comfortable and have all questions answered prior to starting volunteering independently. Secondly, my role as a member of the Volunteer Advisory Council includes providing feedback, current knowledge, assist with needs assessment, and supporting the TBRHSC organization. 
I really enjoy being apart of the community  and am passionate about volunteering with patients at the TBRHSC, and supporting my fellow Métis and nursing student at Lakehead University.”
Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Bursary Program Birgit Wartenberg 2023-05-31 04:00:00Z 0

2023/2024 Budget Presentation

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The Budget Committee, consisting of Karen Baker, Peter Coy, Paul Fleming, Andrew Kole, Peter Malone, Rosi Ouellette and Darrell Smith have been working hard to put together the operating and service budgets for the 2023-2024 Rotary Year.  The Committee met in person and online to develop these budgets and they were approved by the Board of Directors at their Meeting on May 16, 2023.
Vice President Karen Baker, soon to be President Elect as of July 1st presented the budget package at the lunch meeting on May 25th and entertained questions from the floor.  A few highlights and special mentions of upcoming plans include resuming the 50/50 meeting draw as of July 2023 to generate interest as the pot grows.  An easy contribution budgeted at $2,000 as Operations Revenue.  The Public Relations line item is budgeted to include the development, printing and purchase of items to increase the community's awareness of Rotary and all the projects that are carried out.  This is one of the themes that came out of the Refresh Rotary survey results and session on May 3rd.  The budget for Membership Recruitment and Retention has been increased, again as a result of the survey and membership input.  It should be noted that all committees who submitted a budget request for their committee's work were funded to the amount requested.  A new budget line item -- Public Image was added with a $4,000 budget to purchase materials for long term use to increase the image and visibility of Rotary beginning in 2023-2024.  A Public Image Director has been identified and is in the process of developing a Public Image Plan.  The budget provided is not expected to be at the same level in the future.  The Rotary Club of Belleville made a $100,000 commitment to the new YMCA build and some budgets and spending areas have been adjusted to assist in that commitment over the next three (3) years.  Both the operating budget and the service budget came in with small amounts to the good.
The Rotary Club of Belleville does a tremendous amount of work, both in the community and around the world through Rotary International and the efforts of each Rotarian to raise funds to continue these much needed efforts is to be noted.  To support disaster relief, Polio Plus, Camp Merrywood, Special Needs Children, Hospice Quinte, YMCA, Kids Against Hunger, the Children's Foundation, Clowns for Kids, Food for Learning, the Rotary Music Festival and other community needs is just a few areas where Rotary is front and center.
President Darrell Smith thanked Karen Baker for organizing and putting together a well laid out budget for today's meeting, noting that the Club has made concerted efforts to move financial stewardship to a positive place.  Most recently the Board approved support through the Red Cross to support Canadians impacted by wildfires.  Thank you to every Rotarian for their on-going efforts and contributions to the work of Rotary, here and abroad.  An email will be forwarded to everyone to vote on this budget and someone committed to donating a happy buck (dollar) for every person who votes.
2023/2024 Budget Presentation Vice President Karen Baker 2023-05-25 04:00:00Z 0

Quinte Rotary Music Festival - Concert of Stars

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Concert of Stars was held on May 24th, a wrap-up evening of the Quinte Rotary Music Festival.  Chair of the Music Festival Committee, John Chisholm, noted that the festival is a combination of efforts by the Rotary Club of Belleville, the Rotary Club of Trenton plus the Belleville Sunrise Rotary Club.  This year the festival was live as opposed to having virtual performances and judging for the past two years.  He thanked the many special financial supporters, noting it cost between $23,000 to $27,000 to run the Music Festival.  Master of Ceremonies and Rotarian, Peter Coy, a seasoned chorister, remarked that all performers and festival competitors obtain a great advantage in life by participating in this Music Festival.  Many amazing performers and many thousands of dollars in awards were presented during the evening.  A stunning and purely enjoyable evening was had by all.
Albert College student Dante Duffus was awarded the coveted Rose Bowl for top vocal winner, one of several awards that he won during the spring Quinte Rotary Music Festival.  Shown here are Rotarian Margaret Seu, Dante and his mum, very proud indeed.
Quinte Rotary Music Festival - Concert of Stars 2023-05-24 04:00:00Z 0

First Rotary Exchange Student

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A special surprise at the Inter-Rotary Spelling Bee finals.  Ian Acton was the lead producer for the video event.  District Governor Josif Ciosa was pleased to advise everyone that Ian was the first Rotary District 7070's Rotary Exchange Student in 1972 when he went to South Africa.  At that time, Wilf Wilkinson was District Governor.
First Rotary Exchange Student 2023-05-15 04:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk

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John Chisholm was pleased to introduce Mark Musca and his classification talk at the Rotary Club of Belleville lunch meeting.  Mark is the Head of School at Albert College, a life-long educator and a member of the Quinte Rotary Music Festival.
Mark's middle name comes from his grandfather, Carmine Musca, a proud connection to rural southern Italy, a place called Sannicola di Lecce which is in Publia, the heel of the Italian boot.  Mark's grandfather was a great story  teller and looking back, Mark credits his grandfather for sparking his interest in history.  Carmine was a hardworking, intelligent and wise man and in 1954 he followed a brother to Canada and moved his family to Ottawa, started working as a painter for Canadian National Railway and Mark's grandmother continued applying her seamstress skills.  Through hard work and living frugally, the family was an example of an immigrant experience.  Even Mark's father, who at 12, started working after school understood the need to earn what he could to support the family.  Through the family's perseverance and sacrifices, they bought properties and the rent from those properties paid for Mark's education and Mark recognizes not only the material benefits of his parents and grandparents, but also the guidance their upbringing provided.
Both Mark's parents became teachers and met in Ottawa where Mark was born and spent his early years.  The family moved to Belleville in 1979 and Mark attended school here until the family moved to Smiths Falls where Mark graduated from high school.  One thing Mark remembers from those early years in Belleville was Jim's Pizzeria.  After high school, Mark attended Carleton University, obtaining a BA with a major in history and it was there that he met his wife Claudia on a blind date described by Mark as the 1990's equivalent of online dating.  Mark's career as an educator started after University, as a high school history teacher in Brockville, followed by a move into administration, first as a vice principal and then as principal.  He credits an amazing mentor, early in his career, Jane McMillan and he still finds himself asking "what would Jane do?" in many situations that come up.  His next step was superintendent that included a new role of HR where he had to learn quickly all the ropes dealing with grievance arbitration, contract negotiations, labour relations, many of which were very stressful.  Mark started to consider independent school systems and became principal at Villanova College in King City, Ontario.  As a family, the time was right for a move to York Region.  A large percentage of the student population is made up of students of Italian descent and Mark found it wonderful to work with families who had similar cultural experiences as his own.  Wanting to be closer to his family in Ottawa, Mark applied to Albert College when Head Keith Stansfield, announced his retirement in 2019,
So Mark is back in Belleville, walking the same streets that he did 40 years ago, working at Albert College, a school that has been around longer than Canada has been a country.  Founded in 1857, Albert has been educating international and local students for well over a century and a half.  Student enrolment is 300 from pre-K to Grade 12.  One hundred are international students from over 15 countries around the world.  The greatest benefit Mark has experienced has been driving his children to and from school everyday when they lived in Newmarket and being present at each of his
daughters graduations, presenting their diplomas.
Mark was thanked by Len Kennedy who was on the Board at Albert College when Mark became the successful Head of Education, a good match for the school and the community.
Classification Talk Mark Carmine Musca 2023-05-11 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Refresh 2023 Member Survey Results

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The Board of the Rotary Club of Belleville wanted to hear from their membership as part of a review of the Club and its activities as it heads into the
next 100 years of its existence. The Board wishes to co-create with its members a refreshed Rotary Club of Belleville – one that attracts new members and operates in ways that align with the ways in which the Club serves Belleville as well as Rotary’s seven areas of focus.

The Board enlisted the support of People Minded Business (PMB) partners, Paul Fleming, and Janeen Halliwell (members of Rotary) to develop an e-survey for the purpose of gathering insights into what matters most to the Club’s current members about their involvement with Belleville Club.The survey launched on January 6, 2023 and closed on February 13, 2023. 56 of 96 members completed the survey representing almost 60% of membership (uncommonly high for surveys).
Not only were the overall response rates high, but each ‘Years of Service’ group had over a 50% response rate which provides a good and accurate reflection of member’s views. Respondents also represented a good mix of ages:
  • 7.1% under 40 years
  • 17.9% 40 - 49 years
  • 21.4% 50 - 59 years
  • 14.3% 60 - 69 years
  • 28.6% 70 - 79 years
  • 8.9% 80+ years
Looking at these two elements together shows that there is a correlation between a person’s age and years of service, with most newer people (<5 years of service) tending to be younger than older members (20+ years of service).
What matters most to Club members was consistent across all age and years of service groups -- giving back (Belleville was mentioned consistently with some international mentions), socializing, engaging and enjoyable activities.
For each of the seven questions on the survey, PMB looked at the responses for major themes in the data.  There are seven themes identified as a result of the survey and these will be drilled down at the working session on May 3rd at Sans Souci.  The themes are:
  • It's Time to Change
  • Recruiting New Members
  • Engaging existing members
  • Meetings, less formal, more fun
  • Satellite Club and Core Club integration
  • Focus and clarity
  • Awareness (public image)
President Elect Peter Malone is looking for the voice of the membership to be loud and clear on May 3rd and from those discussions, actionable items will be identified, driven by the seven themes.  The partners of People Minded Business, Paul Fleming and Janeen Halliwell, fellow Rotarians, will be at the May 3rd session and are looking forward to continuing the very positive momentum that has already been predominant through the survey.
    Rotary Refresh 2023 Member Survey Results Peter Malone 2023-04-29 04:00:00Z 0

    Classification Talk

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    Tracy Bray introduced Steve Cook. Executive Director for the Belleville General Hospital Foundation and a great addition to the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Tracy enthusiastically mentioned that Steve will be at Camp Merrywood early in May with the rest of the work team.
    Steve Cook moved to the Belleville area five years ago with his wife Melissa and feels fortunate to be in the role he is with the BGH Foundation.  He comes from a global sport environment in the U.K. before moving into the healthcare sector.  He was brought up in the northwest part of England, a coastal town where his parents were involved in the hotel/tourism business and where Steve learned to love the outdoors.  He also was a huge soccer fan growing up, very involved in sports and was lucky to attend two great universities, Leeds and Lancaster.  In Great Britain Steve was Head of Corporate Partnerships for St. Luke's Cheshire Hospital.  In this role he planned, delivered and managed donor development and major gifts, a perfect platform to his current role here in Quinte Healthcare.  Prior to his tenure at Hospice, he was the Commercial Director at Wrexham Football Club, working on sponsorships, corporate partnerships, season ticket sales, program sales and advertising and customer experience strategy.  Before this, he was the Regional Sales Manager for England and Scotland for Sodexo, working on partnerships with The Open Championship.  The networking and marketing opportunities are just some of the skills he transferred to his current position.  Steve developed an entrepreneurial spirit and through a personal health scare, he became aware of how to raise money and to bring growth in raising funds here locally.  All efforts by him and his team at the Foundation are for the betterment of the community and healthcare here and in the region.  Steve thanked everyone for their support of him as a Rotarian as well as the ongoing support of the Hospital Foundation.
    Sam Brady thanked Steve for his investment in our community, for building a successful team and developing huge growth in fundraising for the benefit of all.
    Classification Talk Steve Cook 2023-04-13 04:00:00Z 0

    District 7070 News

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    Dear Rotary District 7070 family,

    I am writing to you this afternoon to share some very exciting news!  On March 28, 2023, I received notice from Rotary International that the  Rotary Club of Toronto Tibetan, Ontario, Canada has been chartered! Our District 7070 just added a new club to our Rotary Family!

    Every time a New Rotary  Club is created, it validates the work Rotary does in our communities, serves as  testament to the the dedication in making a difference in the world and the unrelenting commitment to service above self. 

    Rotary is relevant!

    New Rotary Clubs add more diversity, bring new ideas, new enthusiasm, energy and new perspectives; it makes us stronger!

    A Charter Celebration Evening is being organized, I ask you to come out to share in the exuberance with our new Rotary members. Please stay tuned for more info. Please give a warm welcome our Newest Club in our Great District!

    Rotary Club of Toronto Tibetan!

    Our strength is our members!

    Thank you for making a difference!


    District 7070 News 2023-04-04 04:00:00Z 0

    Club Assembly

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    President Elect Peter Malone explained that the Club is working on the budget process for the Rotary Year July 1st, 2022 to June 30th, 2023 and looking at new ways to raise money to support the many important initiatives that the Rotary Club of Belleville facilitates.  In addition to the 2021/2022 fundraising activities, there are three new fundraising initiatives that are budgeted to bring in an additional $23,498 for the upcoming Rotary Year.  Below is a quick breakdown:
    • RLK - $101,594
    • Diners and Duffers - $13,750
    • Sens 50/50 - $6,572
    • Bottle Drive - $4,004
    • Happy Bucks - $2,059
    • Waterfront Car Parking - $4,539 (new for 2022/2023)
    • Clowns for Kids - $10,321 (new for 2022/2023)
    • Rotary Winter Games - $8,638 (new for 2022/2023)
    • Total of $151,477 for the 2022/2023 Rotary Year!
    Cassandra Bonn -- RLK is the biggest fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Belleville and all hands on deck are needed.  RLK has raised $1.8 million dollars in its 20 years history.  That is incredible!  Three golf courses, Party on the Bay, over 200 golfers and 300 party goers!  Very pleased to announce and confirm that the 2022 RLK event net profit was $101,500.  So how can you get involved?  Be a sponsor, speak to Sam Brady and Kelly McKinney to encourage others to sponsor.  Golf at Trillium Wood.  Donate to the money tree raffle.  Buy a ticket for Party on the Bay.  Volunteer by helping with golf registration, take photos, be a hole spotter.  Set up/tear down the Party on the Bay location.  Tend the bar (Smart Serve required).  Let Brenda Snider know where you can volunteer.  The 2023 RLK Committee is already hard at work with Sam Brady, Kelly McKinney, Rosi Ouellette, Tracy Parks, Collins Myers, John Smale, Shannon Neely, Hazzem Koudsi, Melanie Cressman, Peter Malone, Mike Henry, Brenda Snider and Co-Chaired by Cassandra and David Allen.  Save the date of Friday, July 21st for golf and Party on the Bay.  Be part of this!
    Cassandra Bonn -- Rotary Winter Games held its first event the end of February, a fun event at the Belleville Club attended by 110 people.  Games, auction, band, a wonderful time was had by all.  A net profit of $7,100 was raised and that is expected to grow.  Join the committee, donate auction items, be a sponsor, invent a game, attend in person, bring a friend.
    Ken Wheeler -- Diners and Duffers was started by Hugh Campbell and the Rotary Club of Belleville and made a great contribution over the years by a two people committee, now grown by double the size with the addition of Dianne Spencer, Harold Brennan, Peter Coy and Chair Ken Wheeler.  The 2023 Diners and Duffers Book is available now, hot off the press at a cost of $40 for a $4,000 value.  An excellent opportunity for restaurants, golf courses, wineries, breweries, theatres and other businesses in the Quinte area to promote themselves and to offer outstanding real value to their customers.  Check out the 2023/2024 Quinte Area Rotary Special Events inside back cover of the book.  Lots going on.  Sales of the book increased by 25% over last year and raised $13,750, the 2nd largest fundraiser for the Club.
    Ken Wheeler -- the Bottle Drive was started by Peter Malone and is now managed by Ken Wheeler and Harold Brennan.  Total profit is approaching $4,500.  Pickup is four times a year.  The committee is looking for a drop off location if anyone has access to a secure facility that could become a drop off location, opening one day a week would be helpful.
    Melanie Cressman - basically a committee of one and part of selling 50/50 tickets at the Senators home games.  Five charitable organizations were part of the program initially, the Rotary Club of Belleville being one.  Over $7,000 was raised for the Club through a difficult time with COVID.  It's a fun night out, people line up to buy a ticket and it puts the Rotary Club of Belleville out there with 2,000 to 4,000 people in attendance at the games.  Volunteers are needed from 5:30 p.m. to 9:15 p.m. on game night, two Rotarians per game are required.  The pot is divided by how many games the Rotary Club covers and there are now nine charities involved.
    Heather Hall -- Clowns for Kids is the newest fundraiser for the Club.  The event is tied in with the Santa Claus Parade, November 19th this year and is kid focused, an opportunity for youngsters to participate in the parade, dress up as a clown with face painting included, food music and hot chocolate after.  They feel like a celebrity.  A net profit of over $10,000 was raised in the first year.  Being the first year, an inventory of costumes had to be built up.  Corporate sponsors are expected to increase along with having team competitions.  Heather is looking for 6 to 8 volunteers the day of and is looking for committee members to approach businesses to sponsor.  Planning will start in July so please reach out to Heather.  Suggestions are welcome and Heather is focused on this initiative to bring in double in year two.
    Peter Malone thanked the Committee Chairs, friends of Rotary and Rotarians for all their work year 'round.  Money is raised and money is spent, the trick is to balance everything to help the spending committees continue to do the good work in the community.
    Club Assembly Fundraising Committee Chairs 2023-03-30 04:00:00Z 0

    Amarok Society

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    Amarok Society is a Canadian charity that goes into the world's most forbidding slums to teach mothers to teach children too poor for school. Daily, each mother goes from her Amarok Society Womens' School to teach at least 5 children from her neighbourhood in her own home. Amarok Society teaches literacy in Bangla, English and numeracy as well as health and hygiene and child care and development. The wonderful women of our Mothers of Intention Projects overcome a lifetime of bitter discouragement to find inspiration and hope in the promise that the children will be able to work their way out of their terrible poverty and debilitating ignorance. This is a new, effective, sustainable and cost-efficient method of addressing a very serious and dangerous problem that has resisted improvement in the past. Teach a Mother, Change the World.
    Dr. Ruth Mathieson, Rotarian was very pleased to be able to introduce Dr. Tanyss Munro of Amarok Society to the Rotary Club.  Dr. Munro has devoted her life, along with her husband Gem, an author, to improving opportunities for disadvantaged people.  She has been an advisor to Federal Ministers in the Canadian government and a Director of Good Governance with the Commonwealth.  Her work has ranged from the Centres of Power to the poorest and most overlooked communities in the world.  In 2006, Dr. Munro and her husband founded and are Executive Directors of the Amarok Society.  The Rotary Club of Belleville has a long-standing commitment to the Amarok Society, through Michael Maloney, Chair of the Literacy Committee and the hard-working members of the Committee, former Rotarian Sharon McConnell and Elizabeth Grew who led a Global Grant which took eight years to complete.
    Dr. Munro was excited to have Sharon McConnell in person at the lunch meeting and to have Michael Maloney join on screen.  When Dr. Munro and her husband moved to Dhaka, Bangladesh in 2005 with their four children, they soon saw a situation that was much worse than they had imagined.  There was no one working on education in the slum areas.  They identified Rotary as an ideal partner to come up with an effective and sustainable solution to make a difference and the possibilities have been remarkable.  By instilling a culture of education in the slums, caring neighbourhoods have been developed where people have a sense of others and are deeply committed to the program.  Dr. Munro gave credit to Michael Maloney who approached them to connect with the Rotary Club of Dhaka and to Elizabeth Grew and Sharon McConnell who were instrumental in putting together a Global Grant that resulted in Rotary Clubs around the world becoming aware of their work in Bangladesh.  Dr. Munro and her husband are forever grateful to Rotary for understanding the problem they were facing.
    Dr. Munro shared some true stories about young people whose lives have experienced a great trajectory change through the program and help of the mothers in the program.  Not only teaching young children, but ensuring they are fed, collecting food and helping them find safe places to live.  Through the schooling, young people are able to access better jobs and are paid a little more.  They have seen first hand the courage and strength of the mothers.  The mission of the Amarok Society is to advance human rights, peace and understanding through education.  Dr. Munro left us with a quotation from Rabindranath Tagore, "I slept and dreamt that life was joy.  I awoke and saw that life was service.  I acted and behold, service was joy".  Thanked by Masud Alam who knew of one school that was very close to where he lived, he acknowledged the commitment of Dr. Munro and her husband and Rotarians Michael Maloney, Sharon McConnell and Elizabeth Grew.  Give us a good mother and we will give you a good nation.
    Amarok Society Dr. Tanyss Munro 2023-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

    International Service Update

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    Dr. Ruth Mathieson, Co-Chair of the International Service Committee shared with the Rotary Club of Belleville a project in Tanzania
    It came to Dr. Ruth's attention that three anaesthetic machines were desperately needed for remote  hospitals in NW Tanzania. The hospitals each had an operating room, and staff to act as nurse anaesthetists, but no anaesthetic machines.  The District Grant was to raise money( namely $25,000 Canadian) for the machines, which were suited to these remote areas. The machines were small, could be packed into a small suitcase, were portable, robust, 10kg in weight, simple to use, and could function if need be without electricity or oxygen., and can be assembled in 15 minutes. Along with the anaesthetic machines went three oxygenators , which could deliver 95% oxygen, endlessly, and three oximeters.
    A report from Philibert John, the Nurse Anaesthetist Coordinator reads "the machines are in use everyday, and are used in any operations that require general anaesthetic and intubation. They are used in peritonitis, bowel obstruction, stomach perforation, ectopic pregnancy, hysterectomy, and Caesarean Sections.  The machines are simple to use, quick to apply to the patient, and cheaper to use because they are used with Oxygen Concentrators, rather than using oxygen cylinders that are more expensive.  There have been no problems with the machines and concentrators and our patients are recovering well.
    International Service Update Dr. Ruth Mathieson 2023-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

    Classification Talk - Hazzem Koudsi

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    Past President Kelly McKinney introduced Hazzem Koudsi and shared a little background on him.  Hazzem obtained a degree in Economics from Guelph University after apparently attending a number of high schools.  After a career at Canada Revenue Agency, Hazzem felt he had more to give to his community and in 2021 became the Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity where his outgoing personality and his time in government will serve him well navigating various policies and regulations as he focuses on Habitat for Humanity.  Hazzem recalls riding the school bus in the County when he lived on Rednersville Road, a youngster from Syria.  He spent time making friends through sports in order to fit in, although he admits he was not all that good at sports.  When he started work on a six month contract in the mail room at CRA, he found the workplace was not as diversified as it is today and his name Hazzem became Hank.  He worked hard, but found the work environment did not encourage connections with people and so he decided it was time to go. Since then he has worked on the Board for the Quinte Humane Society during fundraising of the new building, a proud accomplishment.  This was followed by Habitat to Humanity.
    Hazzem's parents left Syria shortly after they were married fifty-seven (57) years ago in Dasmascus.  Their first stop was in Wisconsin where an uncle lived and from there the family moved to Belleville where his parents built a good life with three sons.  His dad was an accountant, a hardworking immigrant, and bought their first house and built equity.  Because of his background, Hazzem learned about home affordability, bringing families hope so they can grow and set down ties in the community.  And he has taken those values to 93 Dundas Street East, where a three storey, 66 unit complex will be developed with daycare space, green land, one/two/three bedroom units, partnering with Hastings County to provide living options for people in the community.  Hazzem recognizes how fortunate he has been to accomplish what he has and demonstrates love of family and respect for the community.
    Hazzem's father, Rotarian Al Koudsi thanked Hazzem for joining Rotary and following in his footsteps.  Hazzem was presented his blue badge by President Darrell Smith.
    Classification Talk - Hazzem Koudsi 2023-03-02 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Winter Games

    As you may know, our Rotary Club is hosting a brand new fundraiser - Rotary Winter Games. Think of it as Hockey Night in Quinte 2.0! 
    Our first annual Rotary Winter Games is being held on Friday, February 24th at the Belleville Club, doors open at 6:30pm. There will be FUN GAMES, DANCING, LIVE MUSIC BY THE CHACHKIES, and PRIZES. Tickets are only $25. We are also having a Silent Auction and 50/50 draw. We are asking everyone to wear their favourite Plaid shirt. Please keep in mind that this is an age of majority event. 
    WE NEED YOUR HELP!! Here's how you can help....
    1) Buy tickets. And get your friends to buy tickets. To purchase tickets, go to this link:
    2) Donate Silent Auction Items. We are asking every Rotarian to donate 1 item to our Silent Auction. We are looking for anything...experiences, tickets, gift cards, baskets, alcohol, etc. You can bring your silent auction to the Rotary lunch meeting tomorrow or email Peter Coy (petercoy@prodigm.ca) and we will arrange pick-up. 
    Here are the instructions to register your Silent Auction Item. 
    3) Share the event on your social media page. You can find the event here:
    4) Promote the event. I have attached a jpeg of the Poster. You can email it or print and post at your workplace. I also have some large printed posters left and will bring them to Rotary lunch meeting tomorrow.
    5) Volunteer - we are still looking for volunteers to help with Silent Auction, Sell/collect tickets at the door, help run some of the games. If you are able to volunteer, please email me: cassandra@mix97.com
    I would like to thank the entire committee for their support in putting together this fun event. Remember that this is a fundraiser for our Club so your support is important and very much encouraged!! 
    Should you have any questions, don't hesitate to reach out to me. 
    GAME ON!!!
    Rotary Winter Games Cassandra Bonn 2023-02-24 05:00:00Z 0

    Mayors of the Week

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    Jennifer was pleased to be involved in the Rotary Mayors of the Week program again this year. The program has been running since 1969, providing local high school students an opportunity to meet with various City staff and departments and get a first-hand look at how their municipal government operates. 
    This year we had four students participate.  The schools select students who show civic leadership and an interest in helping their communities.  The students meet at various City locations each afternoon for a week, accompanied by Rotarians.  They are given tours of City facilities, meet with senior staff and the Mayor and attend a City Council meeting.  Following this, they attend a Rotary meeting to share their experiences with our club.
    The students were able to meet the new Mayor and Council the week of December 5.  Jo-Anne Wheeler accompanied them to the Mayor’s Office and a library tour on Monday.  Dr. Tracy Bray joined them for a tour of City Hall, the Sports and Wellness Centre and the Transportation and Operations department on Tuesday.  Jennifer joined them for the tour of the water and wastewater plants and Belleville’s HR department on Wednesday.  President Darrell accompanied them for a tour of the police station and Council chambers on Thursday, and Shannon Neely did the tour of the Fire Department on Friday.  Shannon and Jennifer also joined the students for a lunch with Joe Reid and Councillor Thompson on Friday. Two students have joined us today, Emma Lee Hogan from Nicholson Catholic College and Ben James from Albert College.  A third student, Joshua Choicine was unable to attend, but provided his comments on the program as well.
    Emma-Lee Hogan, a Grade 12 student at Nicholson Catholic College was honoured to be chosen to represent her school in the Mayors of the Week program.  She will speak about a few things that she felt were very interesting.  First stop was the public library, an inside and literally on the roof tour of the building.  In addition to books, there were paintings and art pieces by many artists.  Day two they met Joe Reid of the Transportation and Operations Department of the City, a very enthusiastic representative.  Joe and his crew are the first service on the scene if there is bad weather.  Next time you see a snow plow, think of Joe and his crew.  It was them who helped clean up the debris when the storm blew the roof off of Chilango's downtown.  Emma-Lee noticed there was a lot more chemistry involved at the water treatment plan and she was very impressed with their tour guide and the information provided.  Each place the students visited has a very important part to play in the City.  Thank you to all the people the students met through the week.  Can't forget about City Hall where they learned about everything from operations to finance and how a City Council worked.  Belleville is growing rapidly from village, to town to now a great City and it is amazing how everything and everyone works together.  Emma-Lee plans on studying psychology, but having finished this Mayors of the Week program, may contemplate government, especially seeing forensics in action and mental health training and support provided by police officers at the Belleville Police Service.  Thank you to everyone for such a great opportunity to learn.
    Ben James is a student at Albert College and he thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville for the opportunity to see the workings of the City and responsibilities serving as mayor.  One Department that stood out was the Transportation office and all the farm equipment that the City has.  Ben gained knowledge on maintaining roads and the systems in place.  He saw first hand the workings of local government and what goes on behind the scenes.  How much money and effort goes into what seems to be simple operations.  Joe Reid was super positive and made everything interesting and fun.  The program will be beneficial to Ben in the future as he may now consider working for the City of Belleville.  Thank you.
    Joshua was unable to attend the Rotary lunch as he was competing for Eastside Secondary at the COSSA Ski Championships.  Josh thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville and sponsors who made it possible for him to participate in the Mayors of the Week program.  He has used the Quinte Sports and Wellness Center on numerous occasions.  Getting a look into the logistics and what it takes to run this facility from a mechanical standpoint was interesting.  He learned that the building was designed for energy and heat efficiency.  The students were able to see the infrastructure and machinery used to create and maintain the ice rinks.  A fantastic part of the week was the tour of the water and sewage treatment center.  Walking through the facility, seeing and learning about the well engineered steps in each process was eye-opening.  The week changed Josh's perspective on municipal politics and the City operations.  Josh truly felt like a mayor for the week!
    Mayors of the Week Jennifer Savini, Chair 2023-02-16 05:00:00Z 0

    Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell

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    Lieutenant Governor General Elizabeh Dowdeswell was the guest speaker on February 1st at the Grand, an in-person Community Service Club luncheon hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Belleville.  The luncheon was attended by over 120 members from the Shriners, Lions Club, Kiwanis (Belleville and Trenton Clubs), Probus (Belleville and Quinte West Clubs) and Rotary.
    Honourable Elizabeth Dowdeswell 2023-02-01 05:00:00Z 0

    Parks and Plaques

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    Over the years, our Rotary Club has undertaken, or assisted in, a number of projects for the betterment of outdoor parks and spaces in the City of Belleville. Our participation has been both financial and/or in the form of sweat equity. To acknowledge our participation, our Club has been recognized at the locations, with plaques and/or signage.  Issues exist at many locations related to deterioration, equipment malfunctions and vandalism.  With the approval of our Board of Directors, John Smale and I have undertaken to work with the City of Belleville to address these issues in 2023. A spin off of this project will be a booklet for our archives that will compliment work already identified in Our 100th anniversary book “A History of the Rotary Club of Belleville”.
    To that end, we have identified the following projects that carry a recognition of our contribution:
    • Rotary (Centennial) Ball Park, (Behind Centennial HS, Off Bridge St. W)
    • Alemite Ball Park (102 Pine St.)
    • 75th Anniversary tree plantings on Keegan Pkwy. (Foster to Herchimer)
    • “Rick Meagher/Medigas Rotary Park” (Pirate Ship, East Riverside Park)
    • Rotary International 100th Anniversary “Children of Hope” statue, (Pinnacle & Front)
    • Rotary Music Garden (beside Pirate Ship}
    • Rotary Fitness Park (east of playpark, Bayshore Trail)
    • Field of Ability ball diamond (Parkdale) 
    • Ongoing tree plantings at various locations
    • The four plaques at Camp Merrywood will also be documented 
    The reason for this letter is to solicit your participation with respect to any pertinent facts, related to the above locations, that you feel we should include in our summary; for knowledge of any other locations in Belleville that should be documented.  If you have input, please contact Vince Lynch by February 01, 2023.
    Yours in Rotary
    Vince Lynch (pictured here at the opening of the Rotary Fitness Park)
    Parks and Plaques Vince Lynch 2023-01-21 05:00:00Z 0

    2022 Christmas Kettle Campaign

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    Dianne Spencer received an update on the results of the 2022 Christmas Kettle Campaign conducted by the Salvation Army in our area.  Even after the kettle campaign was finished, people in the community continued to mail in and make online donations to the Salvation Army, resulting in a final total of $361,598.09.  What a wonderful community.  The Salvation Army is beyond grateful.  Never underestimate the difference you made and the lives you touched.
    The Rotary Club of Belleville once again stepped up to assist in the 2022 Salvation Army Kettle Campaign - LCBO Location at the Quinte Mall.  The campaign at this location ran for 18 days, with a total of 87 spots needing to be filled (after the schedule was adjusted due to weather). Rotarians and friends filled 67 of those shifts, with others covered through the Salvation Army. 
    21 Belleville Rotarians stepped up to volunteer, and were joined by Stirling Rotarians Bill & Cory MacKay, and former Rotarian, Sharon McConnell. Four friends of Rotarians also volunteered.  A shout-out to Rotarian Kerry Paul for sharing his technical skills and setting up the Volunteer list on ClubRunner, allowing Rotarians and other volunteers to readily sign up! 
    With 67 shifts covered, 134 volunteer hours were generously provided, helping to collect a total of $16,526 at this location! Final numbers are still to be confirmed, but the Salvation Army has announced a preliminary campaign total of $319,864, topping the goal of $315,000. 
    While this isn’t a fundraiser for our Club itself, the volunteer hours provided by Rotarians are invaluable in assisting with the Salvation Army’s annual community campaign. Kudos to the 28 individuals who stepped up to help, and in particular, special thanks to those taking multiple shifts - our Rotary Rock Stars! Nadine Langlois and Jamie Trudeau, who each covered 6 shifts;  Karen Baker, Harold Brennan, and Hazzem Koudsi  - 4 shifts, and Pat Feasey, Vince Lynch, Ray McCoy, and Darrell Smith, who covered 3 shifts each. 
    A huge thank you to all who assisted in this important Community Service initiative!
    2022 Christmas Kettle Campaign Dianne Spencer 2023-01-21 05:00:00Z 0

    Marianne McQuillan - Casey House, Toronto

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    Rotarian Ruth Mathieson was pleased to introduce the guest speaker on January 19th, 2023, Marianne McQuillan.  For over 20 years Marianne has been an excellent fundraiser for not for profit organizations, securing major gifts and planned gift commitments.  She connects the donors to ensure they remain focused on the mission and stay connected to causes that matter to them.  Marianne has worked in Hong Kong, Vietnam, India, Ghana, Morocco and Norway.  Since May of 2022, she has been the Leadership Gifts Officer for Casey House in Toronto.  Her parents live in Belleville so we are fortunate to meet Marianne in person.
    In the 1980's the appearance of AIDS put fear into many, stoked by the media and ostracizing many people.  In 1988 Casey House opened, a place for people with AIDS to be cared for in a hospice-like setting.  Casey House was supported by a group of people who wanted to support those affected by the HIV/AIDS virus.  The tide was turning and there was success through medication to prolong lives and prevent the disease.  There are 65,000 Canadians who have or who are living with HIV so support is still very much needed.  Patients come from all walks of life, in all sorts of areas.  HIV/AIDS does not discriminate and attacks females, people of colour, new immigrants, Indigenous, people who do drugs, inmates.  Compassion and care are essential in order to support the whole person.   There is no cure, but the focus is to bring the viral load down. 
    Casey House is set up as a hospital serving in-patients as well as a day program.  There are 14 in hospital rooms and they are currently at full capacity on a 24/7 basis.  The health of the patients is fragile.  Casey House also serves as a hospice for end of life care, but their biggest focus is on their out-patient program where they provide medical services, social support, government services, hot lunches Monday to Friday and groups of interest such as music, books, gardens and gay clubs.  Casey House is very proud of how they are managed, an accredited organization and recognized by MacLean's Magazine in the Top 10 charities.  They continually strive for excellence.  The Rotary Club of Belleville has supported Casey House for 10 years and a total donation of $36,000 over that time frame.  Marianne acknowledged and thanked the club sincerely for this long-term financial commitment.  Seventy-Five (75%) of their work is out-patient and these programs are not supported by the Ministry of Health so donations are still sought and imperative to the programs offered to provide people with a better life, to reduce the stigma and to ensure COVID does not add to the disease of HIV/AIDS.
    Past President Ken Dickson thanked Marianne for the information provided and for the caring work that is done at Casey House.
    Marianne McQuillan - Casey House, Toronto 2023-01-19 05:00:00Z 0

    Mayor Neil Ellis

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    Rotarian and Past President Tracy Bray introduced Mayor Ellis to the Rotary Club of Belleville's lunch meeting on January 5th.  A great start to 2023.  Mayor Ellis is the City's 77th Mayor, born and raised in Belleville with deep roots in the community.  He has had two previous terms as Mayor, followed by Member of Parliament for four years.  He has come full circle with his service to this community.
    Mayor Ellis recognized the years that the Rotary Club of Belleville has been in existence - 102 years and the work they have done during their tenure.  Service clubs support the social fabric of our community and drive change.  Council's work will be a challenge over the next decade and will require a multi-faceted focus.  Putting people first is a priority and this involves the current doctor shortage.  In 2006 there were 10,000 people without doctors and through a successful doctor recruitment program, that issue was solved.  But here we are in 2023 with a population growth, the retirement of many family doctors and we are back at 15,000 people without doctors.  This is a priority.  The City has hired a full-time doctor recruiter and Mayor Ellis was pleased to announce that Karen Poste has taken this position as of January 1st.  There are 34 municipalities looking for doctors so we have to be aggressive in our program to encourage medical students to consider Belleville as a great option for them to start their practise.  We all know there have been challenges in healthcare, particularly evident over the past 2 1/2 years and part of Ms. Poste's job will be to work with Loyalist College on their nursing program that will include nurse practitioners and nurses.  A doctor recruitment committee will be set up as part of Karen's responsbilities.
    Affordable and transitional housing is also on the list of priorities and Councillor Paul Carr was successful in getting Council's approval to hold a Homelessness Mental Health Summit in the spring of 2023.  Student housing is being reviewed as well with new partners to provide and support students attending Loyalist College.  
    Economic development as it relates to the City's infrastructure is another priority.  While there is good news coming as far as announcements, the City needs serviced lands in order to attract businesses to the area.  New companies and companies that are expanding are in the works that will provide tremendous growth to the area.  Overall, the City needs to develop a 10 year capital plan to include these areas of focus as well as a complete waste management project that will cost in the area of $150 million dollars.  The current plant was built in the 60's so the City has to be ready.  Over the next 10 years, 21,000 residences will be needed to accommodate the population growth.  Other areas of attention will be a fleet management plan to review and make decisions as they relate to electric and hybrid vehicles.  The City's current transit system is being reviewed and discussions about a possible sub-terminal or regional service may be part of those discussions.  
    Mayor Ellis pointed out that he has been in office 4 weeks with a great council, new and seasoned and he is looking forward to working together to address the needs of the City.
    President-Elect Peter Malone thanked the Mayor for his insightful presentation and pointed out that the City and the Rotary Club of Belleville are close in age and have worked together for a long time.  We look forward to that continuing and look forward to the future growth and opportunities this City has to offer.  Peter presented the Mayor with a copy of the Rotary Club of Belleville's History Book.
    Mayor Neil Ellis 2023-01-05 05:00:00Z 0

    IPPC Update

    A quick report from the IPPC Chair, Birgit Wartenberg regarding the board games being collected for Tipi Moza.  Just wrapping up our last project for 2022. We successfully collected ...... tada......
    approx. 52 board games & 20 decks of cards
    • RC Trenton -12, Brian already delivered them to Ana, see photo
    • Jennifer - 30, delivered to Jamie Trudeau, see photo
    • Jamie Trudeau - 10
    • Shoreline Casino, Belleville and Jamie Trudeau - 20 decks of cards
    Jamie delivered three boxes to Burke's Funeral Home and Eric Thompson will take them over to Kingston on December 16th. 
    Thank you all for another quick and successful project. Birgit passed on her appreciation for all the support when she comes up with "an idea".
    She said something about already working on something for January. 
    Good work everyone!
    IPPC Update Birgit Wartenberg 2022-12-21 05:00:00Z 0

    Mayors of the Week

    Mayors of the Week | This past week, the Rotary Mayors of the Week toured City facilities and met with management and Mayor Neil Ellis to learn more about municipal government. This program gives local high school students an inside look at how our municipality operates. Last night the students joined council and shared their experiences.  They will be special guests of Rotary in the New Year to share their likes and dislikes and perhaps to offer some suggestions to the city leaders.
    Mayors of the Week Jennifer Savini 2022-12-13 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Club of Belleville AGM 2022

    Treasurer Karen Baker presented a power point of the 2021-2022 audited financial statements prepared by Welch LLP for the year ended June 30, 2022.  In short, the report presented no issues on the audited information of the Rotary Club of Belleville Incorporated -- General and Service Accounts.  Karen provided information on actual expenditures that were over/under budget and supporting rationale.  Overall, the Club had a good year as far as the "nuts and bolts" of what we do.  Karen made a motion to accept the audited financial statements as presented and Adrian Hilmi seconded the motion with all in favour.  A second motion was made by Karen to approve Welch LLP as auditors for the 2022-2023 Rotary Year, seconded by Paul Fleming and carried. 
    Five (5) enacted statements with comments from the Rotary International Council of Legislation April 2022 were presented by Karen Baker to the Club and these will be kept with the business documents of the AGM.  Karen made a motion to approve the amendments to the Constitution of the Rotary Club of Belleville and David Allen seconded the motion with all in favour.
    The Board of Directors for the 2023-2024 Rotary Year were introduced -- Past President Darrell Smith, President Peter Malone, President-Elect Karen Baker, Treasurer Rose Ouellette, Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler, Director Anya Deane Best, Director Heather Hall, Director Terry Thomas, Director Tracey Vandervoort, Director Collin Myers, Director Samantha Reid, Director Brenda Snider, Director Hazzem Koudsi.
    President Darrell Smith shared a review of the 2021 - 2022 Rotary Year.  Darrell first thanked his predecessors Doug Peterson and Tim McKinney for their calm, cool and effective leadership during the most trying of times, providing him with a very strong backdrop to undertake his year as President.  Darrell had the opportunity to see how the club responded and interacted on Zoom and the importance of keeping the meetings concise, interesting and relevant to the membership.  The last two plus years has taught us a Rotarians to be flexible and willing to adapt to change.  The Club successfully transitioned to a virtual model, now a hybrid structure and has finally reached a place where there is a degree of comfort about the opportunity to meet again on a regular basis in face to face settings and at the same time facilitating remote access that allows those who cannot join us personally, to attend via virtual setting.
    The Rotary Club of Belleville has continued to operate and flourish and continued to help both our local and global communities through volunteer efforts and financial resources which to name just a few, saw us provide support to the building of the Hospice Quinte site, provide tremendous financial support to the people of Ukraine displaced and challenged by the war in their country, provide meals for both our local and indigenous communities, provide an outlet for the arts through the virtual Rotary Music Festival, planting 3,500 plus trees within Belleville to create a greener future.  Being President of the Rotary Club afforded Darrell the opportunity to gain a greater appreciation of the impact of our Club, but also the impact of Rotary as an organization in the world.
    Darrell thanked many of the Rotarians who have contributed their expertise and time on a regular basis as well as the Board of Directors for their engagement and support, going beyond the realm of service above self, for their leadership, passion and friendship.  Darrell thanked all Rotarians for what they do to make our community, country and world a better place.  We have achieved much as a club during our 102 year history and Darrell believes the best is yet to come.
    Rotary Club of Belleville AGM 2022 2022-12-08 05:00:00Z 0

    Special Needs Childrens' Party

    Super, duper time late November, celebrating some special kids for Christmas! Thanks to Santa and all of his elves for making this day happen.  Thank you to the Pentecostals of Quinte , Andy Forgie and Mr. Hamhocks Caterering.  Here is Tracy Bray, the Elder Elf and her team!
    Special Needs Childrens' Party 2022-11-27 05:00:00Z 0

    United Way Update

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    Rotarian Melanie Cressman was honoured to introduce Brandi Hodge, Executive Director for the United Way.  Rotary's partnership in supporting United Way goes back 16 years, a partnership that makes sense since both organizations have mandates that make our community stronger in supporting people who may need a little extra help to reach their full potential.
    Brandi's goal today was to make everyone aware of the work that the United Way does as an organization along with the impact that donors make on this community that we call home.  Brandi also wanted to bring to Rotary's attention the challenges that not-for-profit sector is facing and why the United Way campaign is more important than ever.  The social landscape has changed dramatically over the last few years.
    United Way HPE is a community impact organization that means the community conditions are changed for the better through the work that is done, the partnerships that are formed and the funds that are raised.  United Way partners with hundreds of workplaces and thousands of individual donors each year to raise funds in an annual campaign and allocate those funds to not-for-profit charitable organizations in Hastings and Prince Edward Counties.  The United Way HPE is 100% local.  All of the money raised stays in the community and assists 52 agencies, 74 programs and almost 50,000 people that include over 7,000 seniors and 20,000 young people, children or youth.  27% of funding directly supports services to children and youth.  38% was allocated to agencies and programs that reduce poverty and move people from precariousness into possibility, including housing initiatives, food security programs and emergency funding.  35% goes to help build strong communities primarily serving local seniors, people with disabilities and women and children fleeing domestic violence.  The United Way is a significant part of the social safety net for families in our community who are hanging on, barely.  The United Way campaign is vital to the social infrastructure of our community.
    In May 2022, the Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN) engaged nonprofit Community Researchers to conduct a survey of Ontario nonprofit organizations with a focus on the period between April 2021 and March 2022 with respect to financial health, staffing and volunteers and general operations.  Some alarming results:
    • demand for nonprofit services is higher than ever before and not expected to slow down anytime soon
    • inflation is rapidly increasing costs while revenues decrease
    • nonprofits are experiencing a relentless HR crisis in recruitment and retention, causing programs and services to be scaled back
    • volunteers are not returning and sustainability of nonprofits depends on rebuilding volunteer connections
    • nonprofits are less optimistic about their financial stability
    The survey results are alarming and reveal that as more and more Ontarians look to nonprofits for support, organizations are doing everything they can to keep doors open amidst the growing complexity of challenges and shifting economic and social conditions.  More importantly, nonprofits cannot continue to do so indefinitely.  Locally, the United Way HPE has very difficult decisions ahead as more than $500,000 in requests were received than what was available to allocate last year.  The message -- it is so important that we stand united so we can build a community where everyone has access to the services they need, when they need them.  Through the Maurice and Marilyn Rollins Foundation and the Friends and Leaders Challenge, new donations at the leadership level of $1,200 or more will be matched dollar for dollar, new donations at the friend level of $500 or more will be matched at 50%.  United Way is committed and promises to put donated dollars to work in the most effective way possible.  When we stand united we are stronger and our collective voice is amplified and we have the power to change the world around us.  When we reach out a hand to one, we influence the condition of all.
    Rotarian Carmela Ruberto thanked Brandi for sharing her compassion of others and to work alongside other organizations such as Hastings County to make a difference.
    United Way Update Brandi Hodge, Executive Director 2022-11-24 05:00:00Z 0

    Community Paul Harris Recognition

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    Each year since 2008, the Rotary Club of Belleville has been nominating and presenting Paul Harris Fellowships to community members.  Each recipient is nominated by a Rotarian for their outstanding contribution to the community and their demonstration of Rotary's motto of Service Above Self.  A Paul Harris Fellowship is one of the highest honours a Club can bestow on a member or on an individual in the community.  This evening's recipients are joining a rather exclusive circle which includes such world figures as Mother Teresa, U.S. President Jimmy Carter, UN Secretary General Javier Perex de Cuellar and so on.  Honoured recipients were Mark Hopper (nominated by Past President Kristin Crowe), Leah Johnson (nominated by Past President Tracy Bray) and Liz Lehtinen (nominated by Cassandra Bonn).  Master of Ceremonies and Past President Tim McKinney presented each with a Paul Harris pin and certificate of recognition.  Pictured L to R are recipient Liz Lehtinen and nominator Cassandra Bonn, recipient Leah Johnson and nominator Tracy Bray, recipient Mark Hopper and nominator Kristin Crowe and MC Tim McKinney.
    Cassandra Bonn was honoured to nominate and present the Paul Harris Community Award to Liz Lehtinen, a person in our community who lives up to this prestigious award.  Liz's compassion for helping people, in particular youth in need, is truly inspiring.  Since moving to Quinte in 2006 with her family, Liz quickly made it her mission to give back to the community, first as a supply teacher and Parent Council, helping with many fundraising activities to raise $100,000 to build a new playground at Sir John A. MacDonald school.  From there, Liz, through her own serious health issues, connected with the Belleville General Hospital Foundation.  She learned that equipment such as an MRI machine was paid for by donors without government assistance so Liz made it her personal mission to raise funds to help fund an MRI machine at BGH.  She was chosen as the BGH Foundation Christmas Angel in 2015 and served on their Gala Committee for six years.  Liz serves on the Strong Kids Committee and was campaign chair in 2021.  Currently the Board Chair of the Children's Foundation, Liz has been instrumental in raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for kids and youth in need in our community.  Her leadership, empathy and passion are infectious.  Liz has been recognized with a YMCA Peace Award along with her husband Eric in 2019, an Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser by the Association of Fundraising Professionals in 2020 and in 2021, Liz was honoured as a Community Mental Health Champion with the Connie Carson Community Champion Award through the Enrichment Centre.
    Tracy Bray was very pleased to bring recognition to Leah Johnson, Belleville General Hospital Auxiliary President and auxiliary member since 2006 after she retired as a graphic designer for over 30 years.  Leah has volunteered in maternity, day surgery, corridor cafe, information desk, volunteer office, tuck shop and aroma cafe, bulletin editor, convener of the aroma cafe and convener of awards and recognition.  Now serving her third term as President of the BGH Auxiliary, Leah has served on many committees in areas of governance, finance, special events, by-laws and QHC advisory committee.   Leah has worked diligently on raising money through auxiliary fundraising events for BGH to purchase much needed hospital equipment.  Since 1938, the Auxiliary has raised over $4,261,779!!!!  Leah is a life member of the BGH Auxiliary and has received the outstanding service award and Ontario Volunteer Service Award for 15 years of service.  And Leah's contributions don't stop there.  She was on the Belleville Figure Skating Club executive for many years and is a life member of that organization.  An avid baseball player, Leah played many years in the mixed and women's slow pitch leagues in Belleville and also tried her hand at 5 pin bowling, also a love of hers.  Currently, Leah is a Director of the Belleville Nurse Practitioner-Led Clinic and a member of their finance committee.  No doubt about it, Leah loves people and loves to lend a helping hand to everyone.
    When Kristin Crowe thinks of Mark Hopper, she thinks of service above self and the ideals of Rotary and deemed it a privilege to nominate Mark for a Community Paul Harris Award.  In June of 2022, Mark retired from a career as General Manager of the Belleville Cemetery, a position he held for the past 17 years, although his career in this field spanned 37 years.  This is where Mark's kindness and compassion is evident and many heart-warming stories are shared by a number of individuals who Mark has assisted over the years, during difficult times when grieving the loss of a loved one.  Mark is also incredibly talented as a photographer and has quietly made a name for himself nationally with nature photography.  His photos have appeared in National Geographic, Canadian Geographic, Maclean's, Toronto Life magazine, Toronto Sun, Toronto Star, Weather Network, Explore Canada Tourism and many more.  Mark has received accolades from the likes of Canadian naturalist and painter, Robert Bateman, an inspirational artist to Hopper.  His real motivation is putting smiles on the faces of others.  As a long-time supporter of the Christmas Sharing Program, Mark designed a beautiful Christmas Calendar and generously donated the proceeds, donating more than $15,000 over many years.  During the challenging times of COVID, Mark donated thousands of posters to long term care facilities.  In 2022 he received the Beth Musclow Memorial from Centennial Secondary School awarded to the parent who is most giving of their time.  Mark has held positions as President of the Provincial Funeral and Cemetery Association and served two years on the QHC Finance Committee.  More recently, Mark has spent time sitting with, listening to and photographing some of the homeless in our community in order to get the "real" story out and support these individuals.  Words to describe Mark include honest, fair, for the benefit of all concerned and a good friend.  He has a heart to serve this community and the community has been enriched as a result of it (quoted by Eric Thompson, member of the Rotary Club of Belleville and fellow funeral director).
    Community Paul Harris Recognition 2022-11-15 05:00:00Z 0

    Remember to Remember

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    Tracy Bray introduced her dad Doug Bray to share a few stories of what he remembers from the 1940's and some history book recommendations.  Doug admitted he looks like a veteran, but isn't one except as a Hastings and Prince Edward County School Board veteran where he taught for thirty years.  He was involved with the Army reserve his last year of high school and strongly feels this program should be a priority today.  Many analysts of WWII might say it was a blessing when Germany attacked London, England.  Hitler focused on bombing airports and factories to slow down the airforce.  Churchill retaliated by bombing Germany and this relieved the stress on the airports and factories and the British were able to build up their forces and defeat the German airforce.
    Doug related a personal experience when he was a young fellow living in Halifax on July 18, 1945.  The war was pretty much over, but a fire broke out in Bedford, Nova Scotia and spread to a dock where ammunition was temporarily being stored, creating a reaction of fires and explosions that continued for more than 24 hours. Something that Doug will never forget.  The explosions continued well into the night.  Him and his family were safely huddled up in the commons, but even at a young age, he remembers what happened very vividly that day and night.
    Doug recommended a couple of books for Christmas.  The Blind Mechanic is about a man who lost his sight, but wanted to be a mechanic and pursued his dream, even with his limitations and became licensed in Nova Scotia and shared his skill with many.  A Good Spy Can Live A Long Life is about a young man in Holland when Germany invaded and he shares how he lived through it.  Immigrated to Canada and settled right here in Quinte.  The young boy was A.A. Spitters a story of perseverance, hard work and love and the father of John Spitters of CJBQ.
    Peter Malone thanked Doug for bringing some humour to his story telling and reminding us that education is the corner stone of who we are.
    Remember to Remember Doug Bray 2022-11-10 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Club of Belleville Provides Meals

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    Over 14,000 Meals Provided to Those in Need Locally
    Belleville— October 29, 2022 — The Rotary Club of Belleville and a large group volunteers from the community came together yesterday to put together Kids Against Hunger meals. “We had a great group of people who volunteered to put these meals together for people in need.  Rotary Club members, elementary and high school students, lawyers, law clerks. friends and families all contributed their time to put together over 14,400 meals.” said Jennifer Savini, Chair of the Club’s Kids Against Hunger Committee.
    Many families locally will benefit from this effort as the meals will be delivered to Gleaners Food Bank, United Way, Salvation Army and Grace Inn.  Some meals will also be shipped to Haiti to help with the humanitarian crisis there.  Kid’s Against Hunger Canada, a registered Canadian humanitarian charity, is committed to engage Canadians, especially youth, in helping to feed those who are hungry, malnourished and starving in Canada and around the world.
    Funds from the Belleville Rotary Club and a generous donation from McDougall Insurance were used to purchase the ingredients, and volunteers came together at Loyalist College’s Shark Tank Pub to package and box up the food.
    Rotary Club of Belleville Provides Meals Jennifer Savini 2022-10-29 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Foundation

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    Len Kennedy introduced District Foundation Chair Bob Wallace, as today's guest speaker.  The Rotary Foundation is the backbone of how we run Rotary and its projects.  A little history lesson -- at the 1917 convention, outgoing Rotary President Arch Klumph proposed setting up an endowment "for the purpose of doing good in the world".  That one idea and an initial contribution of $26.50 set in motion a powerful force that has transformed millions of lives around the globe.  The Rotary Foundation transforms gifts into service projects that change lives both close to home and around the world.  Since it was founded in 1917, the Foundation has spent more than $4 billion on life-changing, sustainable projects.  The Rotary Foundation helps Rotary members to advance world understanding, goodwill and peace by improving health, providing quality education, improving the environment and alleviating poverty.  For as little as 60 cents, a child can be protected from polio.  Fifty dollars can provide clean water to help fight waterborne illness.  Five hundred dollars can launch an antibullying campaign and create a safe environment for children.
    The Rotary Club of Belleville is well on its way in meeting its own annual fund goals over the next five years by contributing $12,500 to the Annual Fund for the Rotary Year 2022/2023.  Contributions to the Rotary Foundation go towards the Annual Fund, the Endowment Fund and PolioPlus Fund.  The Annual Fund funds global or district grants which simply means we decide how the money is to be spent within the seven (7) areas of focus which include basic education and literacy, community economic development, disease prevention and treatment, maternal and child health, peacebuilding and conflict prevention, water, sanitation and hygiene.  Ninety-one percent of donations are directly spent on programs.  The Rotary Foundation has achieved a 4 star rating from Charity Navigator, the highest rating possible.  Donations to the Annual Fund are shared 50/50 with the District Fund and the World Fund.  The District (ours is 7070) directs the use of the funds through district grants and global grants.  The World Fund supports worldwide projects and provides matching funds for global grants and is used where the Trustees see the greatest needs. 
    Individual and club recognition is given to express Rotary International's gratitude to Annual Fund donors.  When a Rotarian gives $100 or more in a year, they are recognized as a sustaining member.  Giving $1,000 or more in a lifetime gives recognition as a Paul Harris Fellow.  When $1,000 or more is given annually, a Rotarian becomes a Paul Harris Society member.  Every Rotarian Every Year (EREY) is encouraged so that every Rotarian gives $100 per year in addition to their membership dues.  DOING GOOD IN THE WORLD!
    Since 1988, Rotary and its partners have immunized nearly 3 billion children against polio.  In 2020-21 program awards, including PolioPlus Partners grants, totalled $152.9 million.  Global grant activities include humanitarian projects, scholarships and vocational training teams.  In 2020-21 the Foundation approved 2,066 global grants and program awards totalled $130 million.  District grants support small-scale, short-term projects related to the Foundation's mission.  In 2020-21 the Foundation approved 467 district grants and program awards totalled $31.1 million.  Rotary's disaster response grants support relief and recovery efforts in areas that have been affected by natural disasters.  In 2021-21 the Foundation approved 55 disaster response grants and program awards totalled $3.1 million.  Total contributions were $440.9 million in 2020-21.
    District Chair Bob Wallace encouraged the members to donate any amount to the Foundaton because by giving, you can make life-changing projects possible and support Rotary's work year-round.  Donations can be made on-line through the Rotary Club of Belleville's website "donate" option or by cheque to the Foundation Chair or through the EREY option on the membership dues notices.  Rotarian Terry Thomas thanked the District Foundation Chair for sharing all the good reasons why we should support the Rotary Foundation, an innovative organization focused on making a difference.
    Rotary Foundation District Chair Bob Wallace 2022-10-27 04:00:00Z 0

    Clowns for Kids

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    Heather Hall, Chair of Clowns for Kids wanted to explain what this program was about, one that she has been involved in at the Brantford Rotary Club for many years as a fundraising event.  It's all about the kids.  In partnership with the Santa Clause Parade in November, all "clowns" gather and pick out their costume, get their face painted, listen to Christmas music.  When they are all dressed up and ready to go, they are bused to the parade route where they will hand out candy canes to the children on the parade route.  The children dressed up as clowns are in the parade, having so much fun and creating memories and feeling pretty special themselves.  The money raised supports children in the community.  The cost to sponsor a clown is $300.  Pledges are raised, a child can be picked out to participate or a Rotarian can sponsor a child who has already been selected.  The clowns can be children as well as adults for those brave enough to be full of a fun for an afternoon.  Business owners can support their own clowns or be a corporate sponsor.  A Facebook page will be set up to promote this event.  Heather also promised a Rotary Club challenge, stay tuned for this friendly competition.  Please reach out to Heather for more information or if you want to get involved in this committee, a very time management commitment.
    Quite simply, clowns help kids and kids love clowns!  With your help, Rotary Clowns will enjoy a fun-filled experience walking the parade route dressed in a costume they can keep, with a red nose and their face painted.  Your pledges will help a child have an incredible experience and memories to last a lifetime.  All funds raised will help children in our community through Rotary's programs including Food for Learning warm breakfasts, the Children's Foundation school bursaries, high school bursaries, Mayors of the Week, the Quinte Regional Music Festival, Camp Merrywood.  Donation receipts will be issued for donations exceeding $25.  Pledge forms are available through the Clowns for Kids Committee, Heather Hall as Chair.
    Clowns for Kids Heather Hall 2022-10-13 04:00:00Z 0

    Classification Talk

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    Peter Coy was born on the Isle of White, Hampshire England, in a small bungalow attached to the White Cliffs Bay Hotel where his father was the manager.  Peter and his siblings had the run of the property in their early years and when Peter was old enough, he became an Air Cadet and received his glider pilot's license when he was 15.  He also attended several RAF camps with front-line fighter jet squadrons in Germany during the cold war and flew aerobatics in 2-seater fighter jets.  Unfortunately, Peter's eyesight prevented him from entering the RAF full-time when he turned 16.  At that point he joined the British Civil Service, first as a clerical officer and then as a member of the computer department in operations.  The pay proved to be inadequate and Peter pursued or more accurately was recruited by a major insurance company which required or encouraged him to take courses in statistics, communications, economics and other useful business skills.  Peter wanted to see more than Britain and answered a small classified ad in the newspaper looking for computer programmers to emigrate to Canada and eight months later he was a landed immigrant.  After 20 years working for insurance companies, at age 30, Peter started his own business and got married.
    Software Concepts was formed along with the development of a fundamental CRM system, employing a staff of 20 people.  Peter was responsible for custom requirements planning, systems design, sales, customer relations, marketing and HR.  His partner worked on research and development and customer requirements development and led the customer support team.  As in many partnerships, agreement on the next growth steps could not be reached so the company was sold.  Peter formed a new software company, Prodigm Inc. and once more became the designer and developer, handling customer relations.  Since 2011, Prodigm has been a Zoho Partner, a very major cloud-based CRM system, providing a complete business management system.  Zoho is growing exponentially and now has over 80 million users worldwide and employ 10,000 people.  Over 150 Zoho-based projects have been implemented since 2011, supporting systems for customer relations, accounting, inventory, online sales, mass email, project and document management, word processing, automated forms, workflow automation, quality control and the list goes on.  Peter is a systems architect and passionate about great system design, helping smaller companies become more profitable, productive and innovative while eliminating delays and lost profitability.  Peter also enjoys mentoring and developing many young IT professionals.
    Peter has been President of Toronto Operetta Theatre, Toastmaster, a tenor in Grace Church choir in Toronto, soccer coach, been involved supporting political campaigns  and is involved locally with the tennis club and Chamber of Commerce, Rugby Club and of course, the Rotary Club of Belleville.  He is passionate about play writing and directing, narrating documentaries, cycling, reducing CO2 emissions and improving road safety, etc.  Peter loves music and got into acting and described this community as a rich place for artistic explosion, much more than Toronto.  Peter started his talk saying that it might be dull.  Obviously not!  He and his wife Brooke love it here.  Peter was thanked by Karen Baker, described as a man of many talents.
    Classification Talk Peter Coy 2022-10-13 04:00:00Z 0

    Calling All Curlers

    Hi everyone, I am delighted to announce that the Rotary Curling Exchange with Scottish Rotary Clubs will continue this fall with Scottish curlers coming to Ontario.  The local organizer of this event is a Past President of the Rotary Club of Picton Scott Lavender who is looking for curlers who would like to play against these Scottish curlers.  I have attached Scott's message to those who would be interested in participating in November and if you are interested in playing, could you reach out to Scott this week as he is seeking to finalize numbers.
    I am the area Coordinator for the 2022 Scotland to Canada Curling Tour.  This Bi-Annual Tour has been going on since 1957 and the Quinte Area has been involved since the start.  Over the last 10 years or so the Picton club had joined in with the Kingston Rotary Clubs, but we have split off from them again.  The hope is we would get the whole Quinte Area back involved as a group. That would be Belleville, Picton, and Wellington Clubs (maybe even Quinte Sunrise and Trenton if possible).  The Belleville Club historically was always involved in sharing the hosting with the Picton Club (the same as it is with the Scotland/Canada Golf Tour).
    In November, 17 curlers from Scotland are coming to Ontario to play in 12 different communities.  There are over 20 Rotary Clubs involved in this tour.  They are coming to our area on TUESDAY NOVEMBER 22nd.  I am looking for Belleville Rotary Club members who curl or that have spouses who curl  (they are 7 women curlers out of the 17 that are coming over).  I need to find 16 curlers from our area to play against this year’s Scottish Team.  If you have any interest in finding out more about the tour, please contact me as soon as possible.
    In November of 2024 we will continue this tour and send 17 to 22 curlers over to Scotland. One or two of those people will be from our area.
    This tour is about Fellowship.  You will get to meet some great people from Scotland and the Quinte area.  These tours lead to lifelong friendships, and they are just another great part of being a Rotarian.
    Scott Lavender
    Rotary Club of Picton, PP
    Scott Lavender, H. BAS, CFP, RRC
    Senior Financial Consultant
    81A Millennium Parkway, Belleville, ON, K8N 4Z5
    Tel: (613) 962-7777 ext. 242 | Mobile: (613) 243-1830
    Investor’s Group Financial Services
    Calling All Curlers 2022-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

    Director of Honouring Indigenous Peoples

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    Birgit Wartenberg, Chair of the Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Committee was very pleased to introduce today's guest speaker, John Andras. John is the Senior Vice President, Director and Portfolio Manager with Research Capital. Together with his brother Ken, nephew Will, Ken’s son-in-law Pat Thompson and assistant Sarah McDonald they manage approximately $450 million in assets.
    Here are some of his numerous positions outside of his business life:
    • Founder of Project Warmth (1993-2003)
    • President, The Rotary Club of Toronto (2003-2004)
    • Director then Chair, SKETCH 2003-2010
    • Director, HIP (2014-present)
    John is the recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, Volunteer Medal and Paul Harris/William Peace Award (Rotary Club of Toronto). John is married to his married to Julie Andras who is the incoming President of the Campbellford Rotary Club (2023-2024). She is the Global Marketing Manager at McCloskey International a manufacturer of heavy equipment for the aggregate, mining and demolition.
    September 30th has been declared Orange Shirt Day annually, in recognition of the harm the residential school system did to children's sense of self-esteem and well being, and as an affirmation of our commitment to ensure that everyone around us matters.  Phyllis Webstad was a young girl and her first day of school should have been a happy occasion for her, dressed in a brand new shiny, orange shirt, but it was not to be.  John went on to speak to the Rotary Club of Belleville about why reconciliation matters and the history dating back to 1452, before North America was "discovered".  Under the Indian Act, children became wards of the Crown and from 1876 to 1997, residential schools were established by the religious organizations of the day to convert indigenous children to Christianity and civilianization.  There were no consultants.  The children had no legal rights.  Agents controlled the lives of people on reservations and the children were sent miles away to the residential schools, with the backing of the RCMP.  The children suffered physical and sexual abuse.  Many perished from disease or neglect or worse.  Thirty thousand children died that we know of.  There were no records kept.  All of this weakened the social fabric of the indigenous people and it is evident today with the continuous welfare stats and incarceration of many indigenous people, including missing women and policing in some of the northern communities. 
    HIP was established in 2014 by a group of Rotarians who were literally shocked at what they learned and saw and set out to get educated, to consult with the elders of the Indigenous Nations.  HIP represents 728 Rotary Clubs in Canada and has a twenty member Board, half Indigenous, half non-Indigenous.  Programs such as Y2Y where youth can form friendships and share their culture.  Virtual round tables have taken place.  Training for new skills and being paid to learn.  Reconciliation is about learning and trying to do things better.  Youth are the change makers, the NOW.
    John suggested some potential initiatives that a Rotary Club could do such as reaching out to the local Friendship Center in Tyendinaga and develop a land acknowledgement, a meaningful statement of place and honour of the people who came before.  Show respect.  Partner with the FNTI, a successful technical institute with a 93% success rate, where skills are developed that communities need such as pilots, nurses and teachers.  Learn to listen and understand.  We (white folks) don't always know what is best and efforts can come across as condescending.  HIP can assist as they have developed a number of partnerships and have built relationships and trust.  John encouraged us all to find common ground and work together for the greater good.
    Director of Honouring Indigenous Peoples John Andras 2022-09-29 04:00:00Z 0

    RLK 2022

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    On behalf of herself and Co-Chair Dave Allen, Cassandra announced the very successful Rotary Loves Kids Golf Tournament for 2022, the 20th Anniversary of the event.  Twenty years of golfing and partying, on the Bay, by the river, at Market Square, all with a great team of Rotarians, raising this year a gross of $150,144 with a net profit after expenses of a whopping $102,917!!!!!!  This was made possible through donors, the money tree, 50/50 ticket sales, sponsorships, golfers.  Thank you to everyone.  Cassandra and Dave will Co-Chair in 2023 too.  Every person, every golfer, every volunteer, every sponsor, every donor......counts.
    RLK 2022 Cassandra Bonn - Co-Chair 2022-09-29 04:00:00Z 0

    Howdy Porchfesters

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    Howdy Porchfesters –
    I wanted to thank all of you for your contribution to making Porchfest 2022 the best one yet.
    Our artists were talented, energetic, and amazing.  Our generous hosts were accommodating and welcoming to both artists and patrons.  Thank you. Thanks to our neighbours for their understanding as well.  Large crowds and lots of loud music isn’t for everyone (but we sure like it).
    We have to thank the City of Belleville, and in particular the Mayor’s Office for their help and assistance with Porchfest.  We’ll be sure to ask for more toilets for next year as the crowds overwhelmed the port-o-potties provided.
    We also have to thank Snap360 (Ken and Dan) for taking care of our technology needs.  We could not pull off Porchfest without their generous support and volunteer contributions.
    Thanks to Arden’s Music for the wonderful offer to tune up guitars for all Porchfest participants.  That’ll keep them busy!
    Belleville Downtown District helped us with promotion and design of the Map(s), AND were instrumental in creating the festive vibe in Downtown Belleville for the Afterparty.  Luisa and Danielle – THANK YOU.  Drawing more residents and tourists to our Downtown benefits us all.
    Lastly – thanks to the Rotary Club of Belleville for its ongoing commitment to this event, and for encouraging its further development and growth.
    It’s not perfect.  We like to keep it really simple and grass roots – but it is a wonderful day for our community.  Some folks want it to be longer.  Some folks want it to be staggered over a couple of days.  Hey – we’ll take everything into consideration and appreciate constructive criticism and ideas.
    Mark your calendars; Porchfest 2023 will be Saturday, September 23rd, 2023.  Registration for next year’s event will open in June 2023.
    Again – thanks for your part (small or large) in making that happen.
    Rock the Porch!
    Sam Brady
    Chair – Porchfest
    Howdy Porchfesters Sam Brady 2022-09-24 04:00:00Z 0

    Porch Fest 2022

    On Sat Sept 24th from 1-4pm the Rotary Club of Belleville presents the 13th Annual Porchfest
    Over 40 different venues throughout the Old East Hill featuring music and fun for the whole family.  Bring your walking shoes and stroll the magnificent Old East Hill and take in all of the local talent.
    Opening ceremonies at 12:45pm at Glanmore National Historic Site
    This year we have a special kids concert at East Hill Park from 10am to 11am with Andy Forgie
    When Porchfest wraps up, the fun is just beginning.  Head downtown for the Afterparty on Front Street featuring Sidehustle Market, fashion show from Mode Elle Model & Talent Agency, and free concerts by Wicklow, Off the Chartz with Johnny Sweet, Andy Forgie and 7th Town.
    www.porchfest.ca for more information.
    Sam Brady, Past President & Chair of Porchfest
    Porch Fest 2022 Sam Brady 2022-09-24 04:00:00Z 0

    Touch a Truck

    The Touch a Truck Event that was part of the Belleville Chamber's Fall Family Funfest on Saturday, September 17th was a roaring success.  Hundreds of people including excited children were able to see first hand huge vehicles, specialty vehicles including Fire, police vehicles, military, EMS, construction, snow plows, school bus, garbage truck, UTV's, motorcycles, tractors.  A great community event free of charge to all who came.  The weather was perfect and the enthusiasm was contagious.
    Touch a Truck Yakov Sobolev 2022-09-17 04:00:00Z 0

    District Governor Iosif Ciosa

    District Governor Iosif Ciosa of Rotary District 7070 spoke to the Rotary Club of Belleville on September 15th and shared information on the 2022-2023 year ahead.  The District 7070 Leadership Team Board Officers include Iosif Ciosa from the Rotary Club of Etobicoke, Larry Whatmore Treasurer, East York Rotary Club, Linda Raney Secretary, Whitby Sunrise, John Burns District Governor Elect John Burns, Rotary Club of Bowmanville (2023/2024), Virginia O'Rilley, Toronto East Rotary Club (2024-2025) and Ron Dick IPDG and Vice Chair from the Oshawa Rotary Club.  The District Board Committees include Jim Sandiford, Finance and Audit, Terry Caputo, Governance, Lynda Ryder, Protection and a new role of Strategic Direction filled by Prince Kumar of the Toronto Club.  Another new role is in the area of Disaster Response with Michael Parker taking the lead from the Rotary Club of Cobourg.
    The DG spoke about the new RI President Jennifer E. Jones and the fact that she has made history as the first woman to hold the office in Rotary's 115 year history and she is Canadian!  Jennifer urges Rotarians to imagine the possibilities in the change we can made to transform the world.  "Dream big and harness the connections and the power of Rotary to turn those dreams into reality".  She underscores the importance of member engagement and goes on to say that engaging members is crucial to retaining members, adding that we need to ask members what they want to get from Rotary and giving them meaningful responsibilities.  Hands-on service, personal growth, leadership development and lifelong friendships is what creates purpose and passion.
    Iosif explained the meaning behind the new logo Imagine Rotary.  White represents peace, purple for polio, green for environment.  The circle connects us and the seven purple dots represent the seven areas of focus.  The green "stick" stands for hard working members who get things done.
    Rotary membership is growing, now at 1.4 million members globally.  RI President Jones has asked us to create two new cause based clubs such as Rotaract Clubs or clubs with a specific focus on learning (teachers), or a family club including grandparents.  The Tibetan Canadian Cultural Center is looking to establish the First Canadian Tibetan Rotary Club.  Jennifer encourages us to be creative.  Strategic plan highlights:
    • Collective District 7070 clubs dollar impact in the community of $2.5 million dollars
    • Create two cause based clubs in our District
    • Increase the number of clubs collaborating on projects
    • Crease a district club dashboard where clubs can highlight their projects
    • Set a Rotary Foundation goal of $1.17 million dollars Canadian
    • The district will work with clubs to crease a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee
    • Initiate a "join us" button
    Lastly, District Governor Ciosa promoted the 2022/2023 District 7070 Conference "We Have A Dream", a chance to rediscover and dream, taking place in Alliston at the Nottawasaga Resort on October 14th - 16th.  Visit the website www.rotary7070districtconference.ca
    Thank you to all Rotarians for making a difference!
    District Governor Iosif Ciosa 2022-09-15 04:00:00Z 0

    Welcome New Rotarians

    President Darrell Smith introduced two new Rotarians, joining the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Adeyinka Atilade is transferring his membership from the Rotary Club of Ogudu G.R.A. Lagos State, Nigeria under the classification of Banker and IT Consultant.  Adeyinka is currently attending Loyalist College in the Project Management field.  Adeyinka is a motivated IT professional, constantly seeking out continuing education opportunities.  He is focused on enhancing an organization by providing strong leadership and positive people skills.  District Governor Iosif Ciosa and President Darrell Smith welcomed Adeyinka to the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Andrew Kole is joining the Club.  Andrew is from Ukraine and has been in Canada since 2006.  He is the Site Finance Controller for Alstom (division of Bombardier).  His spouse, Julie Obstfeld is a member of the Stirling Rotary Club and works closely with Ken Wheeler on Diners and Duffers.  Andrew wants to meet people and do something useful and hopefully improve the community.  We look forward to getting to know Andrew and getting him involved in some of the many Rotary projects we are working on.  District Governor Iosif Ciosa and President Darrell Smith were pleased to meet and welcome Andrew to the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Welcome New Rotarians 2022-09-15 04:00:00Z 0

    Club Assembly

    The Club Assembly provided an opportunity for committee chairs to share current initiatives or if a new venture, to explain what was involved.  First up was Jamie Trudeau speaking on behalf of the Indigenous Peoples Partnerships.  Chair of the IPPC, Birgit Wartenberg sent her regrets. The Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Committee, short version IPPC, was founded 12 years ago. In 2017 the RC Belleville formed the IPPC Cluster, a group of Rotary Clubs from three districts (RC Trenton, RC Wellington, RC Belleville from 7070, RC Palgrave 7080 and RC Cataraqui-Kingston from 7040 plus some community members) dedicated to listen to Indigenous communities and agencies to support them. We are a hands on committee; we want to be involved and want to build relationships with communities and agencies. Our guideline or tagline is:    We listen. We learn. We respond.  Some of the projects -- Fort Albany, after receiving a district grant of $35,000, community members were trained on the installation of ventilation fans in homes that were selected for these upgrades by the local housing officer; Fort Hope, the committee worked with the vice-principal of the school and shipped hockey gear as well as other sports equipment, boots and socks, etc.  In Little Trout Lake, the local women's shelter was supported with baby/toddler clothing and boots.  Sports equipment, life jackets (a fundraiser of the Legacy Team of St. Joseph's Catholic School), Cree books for the local library, board games were sent to Nibinamik and more recently, a very successful laptop drive of over 80 laptops and iPads, allowing every student to have their own laptop.  The committee supported the Rotary Club of Iqaluit's Christmas hamper program.  Also in Iqaluit, a young boy spent time and what limited resources he had to repair "garbaged" bikes for children in the community.  Stephen Licence came on board and helped with bicycle parts and are now a big supporter of this young boy's project.  Art for Aid is supported by collecting and providing art supplies that will be shipped to Indigenous schools in Canada.  Lots of positive press!  The committee supports I Love First People sewing skills lab.  And closer to home the Red Cedars Women Shelter in Tyendinaga receive support from the committee.  In 2016 the committee turned their attention to bursaries and are now working with Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Laurentian University in Sudbury and St. Lawrence College in Kingston.  This year 10 bursaries @ $1,000 each were presented to recipients.  This represents 2 bursaries per Rotary Club in the cluster.  All this work comes with challenges as the local Chief and Council have to approve the committee's work in the community.  The community provides a "wish list" that the committee works with, providing 80% of the requested items or financial support and the community is responsible for the remaining 20%.  This builds working relationships and mutual ownership. Please check IPPC's website www.rotaryindigenouscluster.org to learn more and feel free to contact Birgit at b.w.wartenberg@gmail.com or Jamie at Jamie_trudeau@hotmail.com.
    Clowns for Kids Chair Heather Hall explained this new initiative, a charity fundraising event tied in with the Santa Claus Parade via pledges and sponsors.  Heather was involved in this project as a member of the Brampton Rotary Club for over five years.  Young people are involved in the event and either supported individually or through corporate sponsors.  On the day of the parade, the participants dress up and interact with parade goers.  Kids get to keep their costumes and Heather hopes to raise $15,000 after expenses towards a benefactor, yet to be selected.  The Santa Clause Parade is on November 20th, the actual meetings leading up to parade date are no more than an hour in length and Heather is looking to increase the committee from the current six members to twelve.  Next meeting is September 12th.  Contact Heather directly at heatherahall22@gmail.com
    Jennifer Savini heads up two committees -- Kids Against Hunger and Mayors of the Week.  The annual KAH food packaging event at Loyalist College is back in person this year and will take place on Saturday, October 29th.  The goal is to pack 15,000 meals @ $.35 per meal to be sent locally to food banks as well as globally.  This is a fun project for families to participate in on the Saturday morning.  Please support this event!  As far as Mayors of the Week, high schools select students to be participants over a week in the Fall where they visit City departments and see what goes on across the City.  The "Mayors" then present their findings and highlights of their week to the Rotary Club and that will be on November 24th.  This program gives the students insight into possible career opportunities.  Jennifer is looking to Rotarians to be chaperones during the week.
    In 2019 the Rotary Club of Belleville through its Rotary Loves Trees initiative committed to planting 50,000 trees.  So far, there has been two plantings, one in the Fall of 2021 and again in the Spring of 2022.  The next planting will take place on September 24th from 9 a.m. to 'noon at Haig Park in the east end of Belleville.  The City of Belleville Green Task Force and Quinte Conservation will be in attendance to assist with planting 400 trees and ornamental shrubbery.  There is lots of work to be done so Terry Thomas, Chair of the RLT Committee encourages Rotarians, family members, young people and friends to come out that day and get us to over 6,000 trees towards the overall goal.
    Sam Brady, Chair of Porchfest is hard at work putting together porch hosts to accommodate over 50 different venues all in the old historic East Hill of Belleville.  September 24th from 1 - 4 p.m. will see hundreds of people/patrons moving from venue to venue from Pine Street in the north, Dundas on the south, MacDonald on the east and Front Street on the west.  All walkable.  This event is contagious and enjoyed by adults and children across the board.
    And as we move from summer into the Fall, we think of the Rotary Reindeer Park on the day of the Santa Claus Parade -- November 20th.  Peter Malone is putting a call out to people to help set up and have Rotarians present and mingling on parade day.  The Clowns for Kids will compliment the Rotary Reindeer Park that will be housed in the Corby Rose Garden during the winter months for people to enjoy.
    President Darrell thanked everyone for the information shared and encouraged Rotarians to get involved in one of the committees that sparks their interest.

    Club Assembly 2022-09-01 04:00:00Z 0

    Rudolf Heijdens Paul Harris Award

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    Rotarian Rudolf Heijdens, known to us as Rudy for his tireless work as founder, artistic director and maestro in 1986 of the Hastings and Prince Edward Regional Children's Choir now known as the Hastings and Prince Edward Regional Chorus. Rudy shared his musical gifts and under his steady helm, the choir became well known internationally, participated in festivals in Salzburg, Austria and Prague, won coveted awards and performed centre stage at Carnegie Hall and the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa and Toronto.  The goal of the chorus, inspired by Rudy was dedicated to support the musical and personal growth of young people and to provide a high level of artistic experience in both choral singing and classical and contemporary choral literature. (pictured L to R, District Governor Iosif Ciosa, Rotary Club of Belleville President Darrell Smith, Rotarian Michael Summers and Paul Harris recipient Rudolf Heijdens). In honour of his long and passionate contribution to the Rotary Club of Belleville, Rudy was presented with a Paul Harris + 3. 
    Rudolf Heijdens Paul Harris Award Michael Summers 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Loves Kids Paul Harris Award

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    The Rotary Loves Kids Golf Tournament has been incredibly successful throughout its now 20 year existence, raising a net sum of over $1,700,000. As those who have chaired the event will tell you, the task to keeping this event in the forefront is daunting and requires commitment and hard work.  But the reward is exhilarating, knowing we have made a difference. (pictured L to R Rotary Club of Belleville President Darrell Smith, RLK Co-Chair David Allen, RLK Co-Chair Cassandra Bonn, recipients Bob Clute and Wolf Tausendfreund, District Governor Iosif Ciosa).
    Rotary Loves Kids Paul Harris Award David Allen 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Literacy Committee Paul Harris

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    Sharon McConnell joined the Rotary Club of Belleville in April of 2006.  She had just retired from a 32-year career with the Arthritis Society in Toronto, before relocating back to Belleville.   During her time with the Club, she was very active with various activities, but the most memorable of her roles was as chair of the Literacy Committee.  As a special thank you for her many years of Service Above Self, the Rotary Club of Belleville is pleased to present Sharon with a Paul Harris Fellow + 2. (pictured Rotary Club of Belleville President Darrell Smith, Rotarian Ray McCoy, Paul Harris recipient Sharon McConnell and District Governor Iosif Ciosa).
    Rotary Literacy Committee Paul Harris Ray McCoy 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Anne Leverton Award 2022

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    The Anne Leverton Award is given each year to someone involved in Rotary Loves Kids, who goes above and beyond and shares their exemplary leadership skills and Service Above Self.  The same attributes that Anne Leverton put into action as a Rotarian for many years.  She is missed greatly and recipients of this recognition are very proud to receive it in Anne's memory. (pictured L to R Rotary Club of Belleville President Darrell Smith, RLK Co-Chair Cassandra Bonn and RLK Co-Chair David Allen).
    Anne Leverton Award 2022 Cassandra Bonn 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Diners and Duffers Paul Harris Award

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    Hugh Campbell joined the Rotary Club of Belleville in 1991 and participated in several Rotary committees and events throughout his years as a member of the Club.  He served for over 12 years as Chair of the Diners and Duffers committee.  During its time span, the Diners and Duffers Committee has raised a profit of about $200,000. These funds have been used in our community to support special needs children and projects such as our local hospital.  Not only has the book proven to be profitable, but it is very popular in our area and has helped develop a positive image for Rotary.  This initiative is the second largest fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Belleville.  In honour of his many years of dedication and Service Above Self attitude, the Rotary Club of Belleville presented Hugh with a Paul Harris Fellow + 3. (pictured L to R Rotary Club of Belleville President Darrell Smith, recipient Hugh Campbell, Rotary Club of Belleville Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler, District Governor Iosif Ciosa).
    Diners and Duffers Paul Harris Award Jo-Anne Wheeler 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Award Presentation Evening

    President Darrell Smith was pleased to present a number of perfect attendance awards to Rotarians, 24 altogether as well as Paul Harris Fellow Certificates and special recognition of achievements by others.  A Paul Harris Fellow is given to Rotarians in the Club on their 10th anniversary as a Rotarian.  In addition, Rotarians can earn Paul Harris Fellow recognition through financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation earning them Paul Harris Plus awards, the highest of which is as a major donor to the Foundation.
    Award Presentation Evening 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Paul Harris Recognition

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    The Paul Harris Recognition! It is one of the most prestigious recognitions in Rotary and thereby named after the founder of Rotary, Paul Harris. The recognition is the Rotary Foundation’s way of expressing its appreciation for the substantial contribution. Giving any sum of money to The Rotary Foundation makes you a part of the eradication of Polio, a partner in creating PEACE, a person who supports Clean Water and Sanitation where water is worth more than gold, it is measured in LIVES. It makes you someone who believes that all babies, children and moms should have good medical resources, micro-credit, equal rights, and believes in protecting the environment.  You have demonstrated your deep commitment to the work of The Rotary Foundation through your act of great generosity. 
    Paul Harris Recognition District Governor Iosif Ciosa 2022-08-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Membership in Rotary

    Tracy Bray introduced the lunch speakers, Joan Barrett and Joan Littleford or Joan squared as they refer to themselves.  Both have been Rotarians for ten years.  Joan Barrett is currently District 7070 Membership Chair and Past President of the Rotary Club of Scarborough and Director of Membership and Public Image.  She is also the Chair of Free Reading Canada and is a Literacy Consultant.  Joan Littleford is a member of the District Membership Committee and is Past President of the Rotary Club of Whitby.  She is also on the executive of BELRAG (Basic Education and Literacy Rotary Action Group) and is also a Literacy Consultant.  Both are retired educators.
    Building membership in Rotary is a top priority according to Joan Barrett.  Simply put, when the membership is strong, the Club is better able to serve and act on the unique needs of the community.  So how do Rotarians work together to strengthen membership?  Well, listen up as Joan and Joan share some tips.  September is Education/Literacy month and based on a survey done, five categories were highlighted.  Currently the Rotary Club of Belleville is down 1 1/2 members over three years so what ideas can we can come up with to focus on member growth.
    • Membership Goals and Plans -- the President submits the Club's goals and plans to District.  One of the focuses should be on ensuring all seasoned and new members are actively engaged.  This is important.  Does the Club's fee structure allow for flexibility, ie., a "couple" fee or an "under 40 fee"?
    • Is the Club active in the local community?  How visible is the Club in the community.  What partnerships are there?  Does the community know how dollars are raised and spent?
    • Active and Intentional Membership Engagement -- by raising Rotary's profile, members become engaged through fellowship, recognition, forming partnerships and providing community focused projects such as the Rotary Fitness Park, Rotary Music Park, Clowns for Kids, Rotary Reindeer Park, the pirate ship just to name a few
    • Visibility in the Community -- it is very important for the Club to have a strong image in the community through social media, local media (print and radio) and to share with the community the successes with respect to monies raised and the good results and specify the beneficiaries.  Using events such as PorchFest is a great way to follow-up with anyone expressing an interest in the Rotary Club.  Jot down their names and contact them, invite to a meeting or event.  And just as important is to maintain and care for current members.
    • Strong Leadership/Meaningful Fellowship -- a Rotary Club is not a one person plan.  The focus should be on a distributed leadership model, engaging and touching base with all members.  The president plays a pivotal role in planning for and encouraging a membership focus through all aspects of the Club.  Although it is important to choose a numerical citation goal, it is more significant to lead a membership focus that results in more community members anxious to become Rotary members.  Be visible in the community and post all events on social media while building your following.  Choose projects that speak to community members because they are specific, relevant and fun.  Plan for the care of potential, new and existing members so all feel collectively cared for.  People will want to join the meaningful fellowship of Rotary.
    Membership in Rotary Joan Barrett and Joan Littleford 2022-08-04 04:00:00Z 0

    New Membership Proposal

    Andrew Kole has provided his application through the Rotary Club of Belleville website and has been proposed by Ken Wheeler under the classification of Finance Controller.   Andrew is the Site Finance Controller - Alstom (division of Bombardier), a French multi-national business.  If no written objections are received by the secretary within 7 days of this notice, then Andrew will be invited to join our Club.
    New Membership Proposal 2022-07-27 04:00:00Z 0

    Nothing Empty About This

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    Rotary bottle drive is Rockin'.....

    Thanks to Rotarians Ken and Jo-Anne Wheeler, Coreen Reynolds, Peter Malone and wife Suzanne, the bottle drive campaign is Rockin' to the sounds of some 11,000 empty beer cans and $1200 to the kitty.  Big thanks to Brenda Snider and Rockfest goers last weekend. That's another great addition to funds raised for allocation to next year's X-1 budget spend.  The group sorted empties over 3 nights and 3 days of work.  Great work!
    Nothing Empty About This 2022-07-27 04:00:00Z 0

    2022-2023 First Meeting

    Darrell Smith introduced himself as the first two time President or Darrell Smith, the sequel.  Made in jest, but Darrell was very much appreciative of the support from members of the Club in this our 103rd year of Service to the local and global community.  Obviously, Darrell did not expect that he would stand again as President of the Rotary Club of Belleville and start his second Rotary Year.  As we move out of COVID-19 related shutdowns to a hybrid meeting structure, Darrell is looking forward to seeing more folks in person with an opportunity to rekindle friendships and fellowship.  Overall, the Rotary Club of Belleville and Rotary International have come a long way in creating a more inclusive environment and this can be seen at Rotary's most senior level of leadership as RI welcomes the first woman President, Jennifer Jones of Windsor-Roseland. 
    Darrell thanked Past President Tim McKinney, President-Elect Peter Malone, VP and Treasurer Karen Baker and Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler for serving the Club with their passion, dedication and experience and continuing on with their roles.  He thanked returning Directors Terry Thomas, Tracey Vandervoort, Collin Myers and Sam Reid for providing essential leadership to the Club.  Darrell welcomed four new incoming Directors Rosi Ouellette, Heather Hall, Brenda Snider and Anya-Deane Best for their willingness to participate on the Board for the coming Rotary year.
    Rotary International's theme adopted by RI President Jennifer Jones is Imagine Rotary, asking Rotarians around the world to dream big and take action.  Imagine a world that deserves our best, where we know each day when we wake up we make a difference.  And Darrell challenged all of us as Rotarians to do just that.
    Following Darrell's presentation, Dave Allen, RLK Co-Chair brought everyone up-to-date on RLK - July 22nd, 20 years after Bob Clute and Wolf Tausenfrend created the first fundraising golf tournament for the Rotary Club of Belleville.  It is the Club's biggest fundraiser, having raised close to $2,000,000 and that warrants a real celebration!  July 22nd promises to be a wonderful experience.  Black Bear is full, however there are tee times available at Trillium and people can register on-line.  There will be fun activities too -- cheese curds and beer and some story telling, ice cream and other treats.  Don't miss out!  Party on the Bay at West Zwick's is a separate event (golfers get tickets) .  Entertainment by the Impish Grins of Sam Brady fame.  With a goal of 400 to 500 people attending, volunteers are  needed to sell 50/50 tickets, bartending, set-up and close down.  Please reach out to Peter Malone to put your name on the list to help!  This is a community event, long overdue and people are itching to celebrate. 
    Next up was Ken Wheeler, Chair of Diners and Duffers, first giving accolades to Dave Allen and Cassandra Bonn, Co-chairs of RLK, the envy of the District.  Hugh Campbell originally chaired Diners and Duffers and then Jeanette Minaker and Ken took it over about five years ago.  This year 450 books were printed and they are sold out!  A special shout-out to Tracy Bray who sold 65 books, Jamie Trudeau who sold in excess of 40 books.  The main outlet is Dewe's, now McDowell's with 240 books in sales.  The past two years have been challenging, but we are now on a roll with a goal of $20,000 in revenue each year going forward!
    2022-2023 First Meeting Darrell Smith 2022-07-07 04:00:00Z 0

    President's Review of 2021-2022 Rotary Year

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    Brenda Snider was pleased to provide some background on President Darrell Smith.  He joined Rotary in 2004 and has over 30 years in the financial field.  He is the Chair of the Special Needs Children Committee and has also been responsible for weekly Rotary attendance as well as Treasurer for the Club.  Darrell has been on the RLK Committee and sponsor since 2006.  In addition to his Rotary commitment, Darrell has been the Board Chair of Big Brothers/Big Sisters, VIQ and United Way.  He was recognized as a Children's Foundation Guardian Angel and a member of the Trenton Memorial Hospital Foundation.  Over many years, Darrell has volunteered and sponsored numerous events and programs in the community.
    Darrell started off by saying if there is anything the last two plus years has taught us as Rotarians and individuals, it is the need to be flexible and willing to adapt to change.  COVID-19 restrictions and the fear of COVID has dramatically changed the way people interact with the world outside our homes.  Darrell was very proud of the Rotary Club of Belleville and its ability to adapt first through the initial onset of COVID-19 and transitioning to a virtual model under Past President Doug Peterson and then a year of virtual meetings with some limited personal interactions under Past President Tim McKinney and finally the first cautionary steps back to active club interactions that have occurred during the past 12 months.  At last, we seem to be in a place where we can have a degree of comfort to meet again on a regular basis in face to face settings as well as continuing the use of a hybrid structure which allows those who cannot join us personally, to attend via a virtual setting.
    The Rotary Club of Belleville has continued to operate and flourish, continuing to help both local and global communities through volunteer efforts and financial resources that saw us provide support to the building of the Hospice Quinte site, provide tremendous financial support to the people of Ukraine displaced and challenged by the war in their country, provide meals for both our local and indigenous communities, provide an outlet for the arts through our virtual Rotary Music Festival, planting 3,500 plus trees within Belleville to create a greener future.  These are just a few of the organizations that have been positively impacted by the work of the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    As President of the Club, Darrell was afforded the opportunity to have a much greater appreciation of the scale of impact of our Club, as well as Rotary around the world.  How much better is our community, our country, our world because of the impact of Rotarians.  One specific goal that the Club achieved was contributing to the Rotary Foundation.  The goals for the Annual Fund and Polio Plus exceeded expectations through initiatives of the Club including the Polio Plus Tulip program and the support by individual Rotarians through Every Rotarian Every Year and donations made personally by members.
    Darrell spoke about the highlights of the past year and the continued level of commitment, enthusiasm and engagement of our members and the opportunity to continue as a viable and impactful club.  We have been blessed by a succession of interesting and timely speakers, presenting on a diversity of topics, bringing the world to our doorstep.  Darrell acknowledged the many people responsible for the success that the Club has realized during the past twelve months including the Board of Directors -- Terry Thomas, Tracey Vandervoort, Samantha Reid, Collin Myers, Len Kennedy and the Executive -- Tim McKinney, Peter Malone, Karen Baker and Jo-Anne Wheeler.  And last, but certainly not least, Darrell thanked his children Marianne and Ryan, grandsons Theo and Hudson and his wife Carmen for their support and love as he fulfilled the responsibilities as President of the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Thanked by Tracy Bray for his time and energy that Tracy jokingly referred to as his practice year.
    President's Review of 2021-2022 Rotary Year Darrell Smith 2022-06-22 04:00:00Z 0

    Budget Presentation 2022/2023

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    Karen Baker, Treasurer and incoming Vice-President, presented the 2022/2023 budget for the Rotary Club of Belleville.  The budget Committee was comprised of Peter Malone, Chair and Rotarians Tracy Bray, Peter Coy, Karen Baker, Randy Coker, Collin Myers, Rosi Ouellette, Darrell Smith and Jo-Anne Wheeler and worked very hard to put forward a responsible budget for the Club.  Their time and collaboration was recognized by everyone.
    After more than two years restricted by COVID, everyone has felt the challenges and frustrations that grew day by day, Zoom by Zoom.  Congratulations to Past Presidents Doug Peterson, Tim McKinney and Darrell Smith for their leadership and commitment and for keeping the Club working at almost full strength throughout the pandemic.  The funds raised and projects supported over the last two years is an amazing show of what the Rotary Club of Belleville is all about.  The Club adapted quickly, especially where programs were concerned to ensure those we support were not negatively affected.  Fundraising was adapted to meet COVID protocols while still raising money and maintaining regular meetings for the lunch time and the after-work members.  We look forward to getting back together in person, integrating the magnificent work of those who attend either Rotary meetings, organizing more fellowship and continuing the considerable work of those committees that raise funds and those committees that spend what is raised.
    The Board is taking steps this coming Rotary year to encourage members to create additional fundraising committees and ideas to compliment the excellent work of longstanding fundraising committees such as Rotary Loves Kids and Diners and Duffers.  More recently we have had fundraising initiatives from the after work members such as Hockey Night in Quinte and the Belleville Senators 50/50 ticket sales.
    So here's to strengthening post-pandemic fellowship and building on the core initiatives of this great Club.  IMAGINE ROTARY and what we can do!
    Karen went through the Operating and Service Budgets pretty much line by line and included year-to-date expenditures as well as the 2021/2022 budget and proposed 2022/2023 budget.  The bulk of revenue in the Operating budget comes from members' dues.  It was noted that dues have not increased since 2010 and a recommendation was made to increase from the current $400 per year to $470 per year.  The Operating budget includes the Rotary International Annual Conference, dues payable to District 7070, President-Elect training, office supplies, auditor fees, professional services (bookkeeper), website hosting and maintenance fees.  The Service budget consists of fundraising initiatives, investment fund contributions and other rebates and donations.  Total funds available for disbursement in 2022/2023 Service budget total $149,949 and expenditures based on budget proposals of the "spending" committees total $148,038.  Disbursements include International Service, literacy projects, Indigenous Peoples Partnerships, Quinte Children's Foundation, Kids Against Hunger, Rotary Loves Trees, Food for Learning, Special Needs Children and Global Disaster Relief fund to name some of the expenditure areas.
    A motion was made by Karen Baker, seconded by Ken Wheeler to adopt the Operating Budget for 2022/2023 as presented with all in favour.  A second motion was made by Karen Baker, seconded by Shannon Neely to accept the 2022/2023 Service Budget as proposed/presented by the Budget Committee with all in favour.  A third motion was made by Karen Baker, seconded by Doug Peterson to approve a dues increase as recommended by the Budget Committee to $470 per year.  All members were encouraged to raise as much as they can with as little cost as possible.
    Budget Presentation 2022/2023 Karen Baker 2022-06-16 04:00:00Z 0

    Paul Harris Recognition

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    President Darrell Smith presented Michael Summers, IT support person extraordinaire with a Paul Harris +2, recognizing him managing both virtual and in-person Rotary Meetings over the past months, since March to be exact when the Club started meeting in-person again.  Not an easy task with technological challenges at every meeting.  But Michael persevered in his usual calm manner and covered all the bases.  As a thank you and in recognition for going above and beyond, Michael was presented with a Paul Harris Fellow.  Congratulations!
    Paul Harris Recognition 2022-06-07 04:00:00Z 0

    President's Night

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    President's Night saw three (3) Presidents front and center -- Doug Peterson, President in 2019/2020, Tim McKinney, President in 2020/2021 and Darrell Smith, President in 2021/2022.  Doug Peterson was first up to the microphone and his year started in July 2019, before any of us really knew about COVID, but half way through his year, that changed and Rotary Meetings pivoted to a virtual platform.  As Doug said, the best part of Rotary is fellowship so it is a pleasure for Rotarians and guests to gather in person and celebrate in style.  Having to meet via Zoom and continue the important work that Rotary does was challenging, but a testament to the Club and Rotary overall.  It took the leadership of many to maintain a focus and remain engaged so thank you to everyone for staying the course.
    Next up was Tim McKinney, President as of July 2020 until the end of June 2021, all during COVID.  There were no get-togethers and that included Rotary International Conferences.  Tim was set to go to Hawaii, but that didn't happen.  Little did Tim know that all meetings would be via Zoom.  He was very thankful for his wife Judy's support during his year as Rotary President.  Even though the meetings were not in-person, it took a lot of time to organize and co-ordinate by telephone, conference calls and Zoom so he considered himself lucky to have had Judy in his corner.  Although the year was challenging, the speaker lineup was inspiring and proved that Rotary's theme of opening opportunities rang true with the work being carried on locally and around the world.
    Darrell Smith thanked Doug and Tim and as his presidency year comes to a close at the end of June, he will continue on as President for the 2022/2023 Rotary Year, the first time in the history of the Rotary Club of Belleville that a President has served for two consecutive years.  The last two years has taught us to be flexible during the difficult days of COVID, changing how work was done dramatically.  When we thought things were returning to normal, COVID proved otherwise.  Now able to meet in a hybrid structure, the Club has operated and flourished.  Rotarians have risen to the challenge to support so many people and projects in the local and global communities.  Significant efforts were made and overall the scale of impact has grown and created a greater appreciation personally for Darrell, but also collectively as a Club.  President Darrell listed the accomplishments over the past year including RLK, a return to Camp Merrywood, being involved as a community champion of the environment through Rotary Loves Trees and the Great Lakes Cleanup.  A presentation on Polio Plus and the immunization efforts brought home the important and crucial work that Rotary does.  Darrell thanked Program Chair Tracy Bray for the lineup and diversity of speakers that were able to present to our Club.  He also thanked the Board for their commitment and continued engagement as well as the support of his family and in particular his wife Carmen.  Darrell thanked everyone for all their hard work and passion for others and to quote Gandhi "be the change you wish to see in the world".
    President's Night Doug Peterson, Tim McKinney, Darrell Smith 2022-06-07 04:00:00Z 0

    Great Lakes of Africa

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    Scientists from two continents working together to improve the health of the African Great Lakes, affected by climate change, invasive species, fragile fisheries, algal blooms, etc.
    Ruth Mathieson, Co-Chair of the International Service Committee for the Rotary Club of Belleville, introduced John Borst, a member of the Rotary Club of Kingston, to speak about IISD-ACARE's goal to save the Great Lakes of Africa (GLA).  IISD - International Institute for Sustainable Development and ACARE - African Center for Aquatic Research.  John's career in education spanned 36 years, including 3 years as Director of Education for the Dryden Board of Education.  Now retired, he acts as an Education Consultant, writes articles in the magazine Education Today, blogs on Education in Canada and has served 7 years as a school trustee.  In 2010 John joined the Rotary Club of Dryden, founding and editing the first Clubrunner website and was President in 2013/2014 as well as being active on the International Service Committee.  In 2021 John moved to Kingston and became involved in the Rotary Club of Kingston.
    The African Great Lakes are highly valuable natural resources, renowned for their rich fisheries and "biodiversity hotspots"  Consequently, they and the ecosystem services they provide, underpin the welfare and livelihoods of over 50 million people across 10 countries.  Despite the recognized importance of the African Great Lakes, they are threatened by the impact of human activity by numerous anthropogenic stressors at local, regional and global scales.  The African Great Lakes are Albert, Edward, Kivu, Malwai/Nyasa/Niassa, Tanganyika, Turkana and Victoria.
    The partnership between IISD and ACARE provides an opportunity for the world's freshwater laboratory and networks on the African Great Lakes to come together and strengthen science on large freshwater resources and the countries in which they reside.  The partnership combines the legal and policy expertise of IISD and ACARE's newly created African network of large-lakes experts and scientists in Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.  During the first year, the new partnership will boost the activities of six Advisory Groups that were created to address specific issues on each of the African Great lakes.  Members of each group are harmonizing priorities on the lakes to advance work on scientific inquiry, monitoring, climate change and education and training among other issues.  IISD-ACARE established a program African Women in Science (AWIS) to train young African women scientists in water research, as women in Africa, like much of the rest of the world are under-represented in the field of aquatic science.  Included in this training is to introduce this group to Canadian/American organizations involved in preserving the North American Great Lakes, spending a week in an area of 58 real lakes in Northwestern Ontario, doing experiments on those lakes. (pictured here are the AWIS participants with their guide and fellow scientist).  The majority of the American portion of the trip has been funded by a single American philanthropist.  The Canadian portion of $60,000 is currently not funded and John's goal is to help find the money via the 112 Rotary Clubs on the Canadian shores of the Laurentian Great Lakes plus clubs in District 5550 in northwestern Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.  John intends to speak to 100 of those clubs.and raise $600 from each.   His personal goals include educating Rotarians, creating a network of people concerned about fresh water, applying for a Global Grant, asking for a representative from each Rotary Club to help work on this project that will support specific areas of Rotary International's Areas of Focus, supporting the Environment, Water and Sanitation. 
    There are some interesting stats associated with the great lakes.  The North American Great Lakes support 30 million people.  The African Great Lakes support 62 million people and that is expected to double in the next 28 years, a real potential for disaster.  The North American Great Lakes represents 23% of the world's water, the AFGL represents 25%.  The annual fish yield for the AFGL is 1.5 million tons per year compared to NAGL of 25,000 tons per year.  The Great Lakes Fishing Commission was founded in 1954.  It took 40 years for Canada and the U.S. to create that commission.  The AFGL have to do in 20 years what it has taken us 60 years to do. 
    Donations can be made personally or corporately as a Club by visiting https://www.iisd.org/awis
    Terry Thomas thanked John for his presentation to a network of Rotarians in order to support the African Great Lakes.  Peace and conflict prevention/resolution is also promoted within this project that ties in with Rotary International's areas of focus.
    Great Lakes of Africa John Borst, Rotary Club of Kingston 2022-05-26 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Youth Leadership Symposium

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    Remember RYLA? Well, the program has gone through some changes, including the name and is now known as Rotary Youth Leadership Symposium.  The District 7070 symposium is scheduled for May 26-29, 2022 taking place at the beautiful Ganaraska Forest Centre, an environmentally sensitive, overnight outdoor education facility located in the heart of the majestic Ganaraska Forest just north of Port Hope! The 3 night experience is geared toward youth between the ages of 17-23 and will offer an inspiring program: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Indigenous Culture, Hands-on Activities, Group Dynamics, Toastmasters/Public Speaking, Outdoor Survival and GPS Geocache adventures along with camp fires, friendship and tonnes of fun and learning!!! 
    Space is limited, and in fact, there are only 30 spots available District wide, so act fast!  If you know of someone who would enjoy and benefit from this great adventure, please contact Rotarian Dianne Spencer.  Two spots have been reserved in the name of the Rotary Club of Belleville in anticipation of an overwhelming response by our Club members!  
    Yours in Rotary,
    Rotarian Dianne Spencer
    Rotary Youth Leadership Symposium 2022-05-26 04:00:00Z 0

    YMCA Centre for Life - Capital Project

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    Dave Allen started off the presentation to the Rotary Club of Belleville about the capital project surrounding the proposed new YMCA facility being built in the City of Belleville.  The YMCA Centre for Life will be a 60,000 sq. ft. multi-purpose community hub that will feature two pools, whirlpool, gymnasium, conditioning centre, aerobics/exercise studio, universal/family change room, multi-purpose/community meeting rooms, lounge and social areas for people of all abilities, convenient Kids Kare, Children's Treehouse, partner organization services.  Dave announced that Ed Lehtinen and Kristin Crowe will be the YMCA Capital Campaign Co-Chairs, supported by a Cabinet including, Wolf Tausenfreund, Cassandra Bonn, Ruth Aulthouse, Susan O'Brien, Sullivan Auctions, Doug Peterson, Bernie Ouellet, John Mastorakos, Mark Phillips, Heather Williams and Kelly McKinney.  Wolf and Elaine Tausendfreund are Honourary Chairs for the Community Building Campaign and are very proud to have made it a priority to share their time and energy to support this organization.
    Kristin Crowe shared a description of the YMCA by the numbers:
    • 780 children and youth found friendship, support and physical activity through a subsidized YMCA membership
    • 500 children were enrolled in YMCA Child Care and Before and After School programs
    • 1330 adults participated in the Post Cardiac Rehabilitation program
    • 195 young people learned how to inspire others through Leadership Programs, preparing them to be the role models our communities need
    Kristin encouraged people to tour the current building to get a sense of all that happens at the Y. The current building no longer meets the accessibility requirements that we have a duty to provide.  The population in Belleville is growing. The current facility cannot accommodate the growing popularity of programs and services.  Why the Location?  The site, at the corner of Bridge and Sidney Streets, was determined by Leisure Plan International, to be the optimal site for the delivery of a range of aquatic, fitness, recreation and community services. The site is well poised to take advantage of neighbouring communities as well as vehicular traffic across the Bay Bridge (approx. 15,000 cars per day). The west end of Belleville is embarking on a revitalization effort and is seeing strong residential growth. The site will be well served by public transit and is accessible to trails for active transportation such as walking and wheeling.
    Kelly McKinney shared that David Brown, retired Senior  Partner from Taskforce Engineering, has agreed to fulfill the pivotal role  of Project Manager.  It is estimated that the construction of the YMCA Centre for Life will, through the direct spending by the YMCA and the indirect (rolling over) effects of this spending in the area, generate more than $30M of economic activity and create the equivalent of 200 full-time jobs over the length of the construction project.
    With a projected budget of $27,494,000, the YMCA Community Build Campaign has its work cut out for it.  Ed Lehtinen advised that significant calls have been made already with respect to funding requests.  The Federal and Provincial Governments have committed to 33% and 27% respectively in addition to the City of Belleville's contribution.  The overall campaign goal is $900,000.  One area in the new building will house a Children's Treehouse, providing children with the opportunity for fun physical activity while exploring movement through multiple spaces and terrain changes with family and friends.  It was suggested this would be a good fit for Rotary to get involved with, a legacy project that will serve our communities for years to come.
    The speakers were thanked by Peter Malone, who acknowledged the great things that the YMCA has done for this community and surrounding areas.
    YMCA Centre for Life - Capital Project 2022-05-12 04:00:00Z 0

    Art for Aid Project

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    The Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Cluster -- Rotary Clubs of Belleville, Wellington, Trenton, Palgrave & Cataraqui-Kingston are looking for NEW AND GENTLY USED ART AND CRAFT SUPPLIES to send to elementary schools in remote Northern Indigenous communities to promote Art for Aid projects.  Deadline for donations is June 30th, 2022.
    Art for Aid Project Birgit Wartenberg 2022-05-07 04:00:00Z 0

    Indigenous Professional Development Bursary

    The 2022 Indigenous Professional Development Bursary recipients are Leticia Wabash, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay and Margaret Arquette, St. Lawrence College, Kingston.
    Leticia said she is so honoured to receive the Indigenous Professional Development Bursary this year. She just finished her second year of law school at Bora Laskin Faculty of Law at Lakehead University and looks forward to continue her work in the community. Some of the roles she held this past year involved being the President of the Indigenous Law Students Association, student rep on the Indigenous Law Justice Institute Committee and the Anishinaabe Omaa-Minowaywin Committee. She also had the wonderful opportunity to work as the Program Coordinator with PBSC and the OFIFC in working to launch an Indigenous Human Rights Clinic in Thunder Bay, ON. Her future plans involve finishing third year of law school and writing her BAR exam in 2023, with a hope to practice either in Indigenous, Criminal or Human Rights Law. Wherever she ends up, she hopes to continue working with community.”
    Margaret Arquette's comments are attached.
    Indigenous Professional Development Bursary Birgit Wartenberg 2022-05-07 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Loves Trees

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    The Rotary Club of Belleville has a dream to make our city a little greener and our air a little cleaner. Rotary Loves Trees is an environmental initiative that will help make that dream a reality by working with like-minded individuals like you to plant 50,000 trees within Belleville city limits! This year with the help of a generous donation of $10,000 the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, we are hosting threelarge-scale planting events.These plants will bring together individuals with an interest in land reclamation and an interest in keeping Mother Earth and our city TREErific!
    The first planting for 2022 is scheduled for Sunday May 1, beginning at 9am at Clarence Bird Park, 34 Hampton Ridge Blvd.  The planting of about 1,000 native species of trees and shrubs will re-establish a natural shoreline along both sides of the creek that runs through the park.  Natural shorelines help in removing contaminants from the creek runoff and protect water quality.
    Your Rotary Loves Trees Committee is requesting the help of Rotary volunteers to help plant seedlings  If you have a strong back and don’t mind the end of a shovel,contact  Carmela Ruberto at rubertoc@hastingscounty.com and we’ll add you to our roster.  Do you have a high school student looking to incur their volunteer hours?  Bring them along!
    On behalf of the RLT Committee, thank you for your support. 
    Be sure to visit www.rotarylovestrees.ca
    Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions.
    Yours in community
    Terry Thomas
    Rotary Loves Trees 2022-05-01 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary International Immunization Program

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    Bill MacKay introduced today's speaker, Adam Frisk. In February, Bill was going through some of his Rotary items collected over the last 42 years. As part of that collection was a CD of a documentary that was created by today’s guest speaker. Bill remembered the luncheon that Adam made a presentation to our club back in 2002, and thought, “I wonder what happened to him and where is he? What impact did his going to Cameroon for a Rotary National Immunization Day have on him and his view on immunization now that we have spent the last two plus years in a pandemic? And why won’t this CD from 20 years ago not allow me to retrieve the file?” A quick Google search soon revealed that Adam Frisk was working at CTV News, a network he had joined 2019, and that he was a national online journalist at Global News for more than seven years prior to that, specializing in covering breaking news and trending content, and worked in newsrooms at canada.com and canoe.ca. At CTV News, Adam is a generalist who works closely with local newsrooms across the country while focusing on bringing great, hyper-local stories to a national audience. Adam studied commercial photography at Sheridan College in Oakville, Ont., before earning a photojournalism diploma and a post graduate diploma in online journalism from Loyalist College. A passionate photographer, Adam’s photographs, syndicated by Splash News, have appeared in print and on websites around the world, including People, US Weekly, Hello! Canada and TMZ. As we recognize World Immunization Week, please welcome Adam Frisk to our meeting today.
    Adam thanked the Club and in particular, Bill MacKay, for inviting him to speak to the Rotary Club about his experiences twenty years ago when he participated in World Immunization Week in Cameroon, West Africa, a ten day trip where he visited with other volunteers, six villages to administer two drops of the polio vaccine in a child's mouth.  It changed his life.  While there he met many Rotarians from around the world, all participating in the goal to eradicate polio worldwide.  Rotary launched Polio Plus in 1985 and since then more than 2.5 billion children have received the oral polio vaccine.  Polio cases are down 99% worldwide.  Adam will be forever grateful that he had an opportunity to see first hand the far reaching impact Rotary had in eradicating polio and protecting a child for life, bringing hope to Cameroon.
    Having gone through a serious health issue himself, Adam is very thankful for the skill and expertise of surgeons and medical staff who supported him through his ordeal in the middle of the pandemic and feels there is a connection to his experience twenty years ago to his more recent health scare.  He is convinced that vaccines work because he has seen the effect in West Africa through to the outbreak of COVID worldwide.  Adam shared a video of an interview he did with a Rotarian from Syracuse, New York, a polio survivor.
    Dianne Spencer thanked Adam for his willingness 20 years ago to participate in World Immunization Week at personal risk, to document his experience and share with our Club and others.  Definitely making an impact on so many, many people.
    Rotary International Immunization Program Adam Frisk 2022-04-28 04:00:00Z 0

    Bereavement Counsellor

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    Past President Tim McKinney introduced today's speaker at the Rotary Club of Belleville -- Allyson Tufts, a long time resident of Belleville and facilitator, counsellor and author who is unyielding in her support of individuals and families dealing with grief and loss.  Allyson announced the start-up of her Private Bereavement Counselling Practice, sponsored by Tim McKinney and his team at Remax Quinte.  The official start date is on Wednesday, May 11th at "the Loft" at 35 St. Paul Street in Belleville, Ontario.  Allyson's services will be available one day a week to start.  She shared her personal grief over the loss of her grandfather when she was very young and then more recently, the loss of her father and her difficulty in managing her grief. Bereavement counselling changed her life and perspective on dealing with the unbearable moments when grief envelopes us.  Allyson read an article she wrote, shared here.
    The love always remains
    Since Alex’s (niece) passing there have been many moments that we have felt the ache of her absence.  We’ve also had times that we’ve felt joy and I’ve even seen smiles on the faces of those who loved her the most.  Sadly, there are other moments too.
    Things do change and evolve but there is one thing that doesn’t. As you lead up to the anniversary of the loss of a loved one, you tend to think of the days leading up to the death and the ones immediately after. You think of that blissful moment in your life before you got the horrific news and then the moment after when your life was forever altered.  Unfortunately, the moment of finding out that the person you love is gone is a moment that sits with you physically, mentally and spiritually for a lifetime.  The triggers of that horrific moment are everywhere. It could be the sound of a ringtone – when the phone rang and the person on the line told you the horrific news, the sound of a loved one’s footsteps coming to your door at an ungodly hour, or worse, the police coming to tell you the news or it could be a vision, if you were the one holding your loved one’s hand as they left this world. These are the pieces of grief that are the hardest to explain.  These physical moments that are imprinted in your mind and heart of the unthinkable. 
    On birthdays, at Christmas, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc. you naturally wish your loved one was still here but on the anniversary of someone’s death you are reminded of that unbearable moment when you found out they are gone forever. All the joy, all the love, all the wonder of the person you held so dear has now, if only for that moment, turned into an unthinkable horror that you cannot comprehend. It is an ache, a sting, a flutter that takes over your heart, your stomach and your breath making breathing next to impossible. 
    There have been many around us since Alex’s death that have suffered the unbearable loss of a loved one and there were so many before us and there will be more to come. Because death is part of life, it is one of the few things we can be sure of. For anyone who is loving and supporting those who are grieving, please know that it isn’t a choice to go back to this horrific place or feeling, it isn’t a choice to ache, it’s simply a part of their life that they didn’t ask for.  It doesn’t mean they aren’t healing, it doesn’t mean they aren’t succeeding at relationships or jobs or friendships, it simply means that this unthinkable moment is there somewhere in their heart, body and mind waiting to show its ugly face.  Be patient with those who are grieving and be patient with hearing the story again. Take comfort in knowing that their capacity to love is so strong that they somehow manage to move forward in honour of those they lost knowing the ache still lurks below the surface.
    There is no time limit on grief but the good news is, and please believe me there is good news…there is no time limit on love either. I believe in my heart that the ache NEVER wins! It may show its ugly face sometimes but the moments of love, giggles and beautiful memories are what sustain us for the rest of our lives.  They are what create the armour to handle the aches.  Stand beside those who are grieving when the ache shows its ugly face so you’ll be there to remind them of all the joy they were gifted with those they loved. The ache, no matter how powerful, is just a small part of the story. The memories you shared with your loved one will always remain and they’ll find a way to show up for you in so many moments as you move through your life.
    The ache never wins because the love always remains!
    Allyson is the author of two books including Korah's Butterfly, a children's book that deals with grief, sharing healing messages and providing guidance for children who have experienced a traumatic loss.  The book sends a message of hope and healing for all ages.  Allyson's own journey with grief inspired the book and brought her back to her love of working with families dealing with grief and loss.
    Bereavement Counsellor Allyson Tufts 2022-04-14 04:00:00Z 0

    Community Paul Harris Presentations

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    Each year since 2008, the Club has been nominating and presenting Paul Harris Fellowships to community members.  Each recipient is nominated by a Rotarian for their outstanding contribution to the community and their demonstration of Rotary's motto of Service Above Self.  A Paul Harris Fellowship is one of the highest honours a Club can bestow on a member or on an individual in the community.  This evening's recipients are joining a rather exclusive circle which includes such world figures as Mother Teresa, U.S. President Jimmy Carter, UN Secretary General Javier Perex de Cuellar and so on.  They are also joining 80 members of the Rotary Club of Belleville and 47 past recipients in our community who are Paul Harris Fellows.  Honoured recipients were Elizabeth Ewashkiw (nominated by Dr. Ruth Mathieson), Catharine and Lanny Huff (nominated by Rotarian Dianne Spencer), Rick Watt (nominated by President Elect Cory MacKay) presented by Past President Tim McKinney, Master of Ceremonies and Rotary President, Darrell Smith.
    Elizabeth Ewashkiw arrived in Belleville in the Fall of 1967 and has been actively involved in the community ever since.  While completing her degree from Queen's University, she became a volunteer teacher of English for new Canadians, eventually coordinating their children's class and thus began many decades of association with early childhood education.  Nova Children's Centre grew from concept to incorporation with Elizabeth leading the way as founding president.  It is still thriving on Montrose Road to this day.  She joined the Board of the Eastern Ontario Concert Orchestra and quickly rose to President and later General Manager of the Board.  Elizabeth is a member of the Canadian Federation of the University Women, Belleville Branch, is also on the executive of the Retired Women Teachers of Ontario and the Board of Bridge Street United Church foundation.  In 2008 while she was serving meals for "Inn from the Cold" at Bridge Street United Church, she was introduced to two other guests who were knitters, forming Knitters United, an inspiring community group which now has 56 members.  They use donated yarn to knit hats and mittens to donate to those near and far who are in need.  By the end of 2021 they had donated 18,637 items!  They have donated to many groups over the years who are in need, including Hastings and Prince Edward Learning Foundation, the Scott Mission, Three Oaks and far flung places like Iqaluit to Kenya.  Elizabeth is a born leader and fully exemplifies the motto of Rotarians, Service Above Self.
    Catharine and Lanny Huff have a history of generous support of their community.  Supporters of hospitals, Loyalist College, arts groups, sports and community organizations, when they see a need, they help where they can.  In April 2021, when presented with an Honorary Lifetime Membership by the Quinte West Chamber of Commerce, Lanny commented that "education and health care" are the causes most important to him and Catharine.  The Prince Edward County Community Foundation was formed in 2009 and Catharine was a founding member.  In 2018 the Foundation announced the establishment of The Huff Family Fund to support area organizations and institutions through grants.  In May 2020, the Huff Family Fund made a significant donation to be used for critical equipment and supplies needed in the fight against COVID-19 across each of the four hospitals in the Quinte Health Care system.  The previous year, the BGH Foundation received a gift of $500,000 from Catharine and Lanny to support nuclear medicine to provide lifesaving advanced cancer diagnostics for the region.  Catharine has a history of volunteer work with Loyalist College and as a Director on the College Foundation, the family has made financial donations for over 25 years including the purchase of a chair in honour of their daughter, a graduate of the College's Nursing Program.  They also established an Endowment Fund in memory of their son, Peter, supporting countless individuals and making a profound impact on the College and future students.  The family supported the building of the Skills Centre at Loyalist, named the Peter F. Huff Automotive Centre in 2013.  Also major donations were made for the development of the Health and Wellness Complex and in recognition of their cumulative support in excess of two million dollars, Catharine and Lanny were named to the prestigious Visionaries level on the Donor Wall.  The Huffs do not seek recognition, accepting it only to encourage others to step up to support a cause.  They seek to promote the welfare of others, especially by donating money to good causes.  They are generous and benevolent and have been recognized as "outstanding philanthropists" by the Association of Fundraising professions in Southeastern Ontario on more than one occasion.
    Rick Watt has been volunteering for over 20 years in our community, a familiar face in the Track and Field Student programs and volleyball, making significant contributions to the lives of young students.  Rick has also been the face of Operation Red Nose locally since 2003, first as a driver in 1996, but then re-joining at the invitation of Inspector Merle Foster of the Belleville Police Service in 2003.  The program runs on weekends between late November and the end of the year.  There are teams of three -- an escort driver, a driver and a navigator.  The teams pick up passengers, the driver and navigator then get into your car with you and the escort driver follows to make sure the passenger arrives at their destination safely.  Volunteers, combined with Rick's leadership are the main reasons Operation Red Nose has been so successful.  Rick was named to the Operational Red Nose Hall of Fame for his contributions and the program has been a model for other communities.  In addition to Red Nose, Rick has also been a long-time volunteer at Inn from the Cold at Bridge Street United Church, working closely with the community and other volunteers.  He was the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, quite an honour.  Described by Dave Allen as the master of managing volunteers, Rick has and continues to give his time, leadership skills and knowledge to the community, an example of Service Above Self.
    Community Paul Harris Presentations 2022-03-29 04:00:00Z 0

    St. Patrick's Day Celebration

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    Past President and current Program Chair Tracy Bray introduced her definitely Irish friend Tom Moran for a little fun on St. Patrick's Day.  Tracy met Tom through coaching soccer, he is now the head coach for the Belleville Soccer Club.
    Tom came to Canada from Ireland in 1989.  The plan was to settle in and earn a decent living and have a brighter future than what was available to him at the time back home.  Tom was a skilled tradesman at a time when technological skills were sought after, making his prospects not that golden.  His mother bid him a tearful farewell, hoping that he would not land on a stool in a pub like so many of the lads he used to hang out with.  After two weeks in Canada, Tom was employed in the automotive industry as a jolly Irish car painter.  Worked initially for Brad and Grant Devolin and then at McCurdy's in Stirling.  Tom considered it an honour to be asked to speak to the Rotary Club and so he went on to tell us a little bit about St. Patrick, the patron Saint of Ireland.  St. Patrick was originally from Britain, a son of a wealthy man who was a deacon and leader in his village.  It is said that a group of pirates kidnapped St. Patrick when he was 16, sold him to a farmer where he spent six years as a slave.  During captivity, he strengthened his relationship with God through prayer, eventually leading him to convert to Christianity.  He eventually escaped, went into the priesthood and eventually brought Christianity to the people in Ireland.  St. Patrick converted many Irishmen and would give sermons on Croagh Patrick, eventually becoming the first bishop of Armagh and Primate of Ireland.  The feast of St. Patrick takes place during the holy time of lent and it is the only day during that time, that the Irish can break their vows of abstinence, so they always made sure they had a good time.  Somewhat sadly, St. Patrick's day has changed over time from a solemn religious celebration to a $5.2 billion dollar industry involving clothing, accessories, decorations, travel, hotels and alcohol consumption over the five days around March 17th.  Tom said to us -- may your wishes come true and your truth be wise!
    And a few Irish jokes to round out the lunch hour.  The quickest way to Cork -- Billy stops Paddy in Dublin and asks for the quickest way to Cork.  Paddy says "are you on foot or in the car?".  Billy replies "in the car".  Well that's the quickest way says Paddy.  Digging a hole - two Irishmen were working in the public works department.  One would dig a hole and ther other would follow behind him and fill the hole in.  After a while, one amazed onlooker said "why to you dig a hole, only to have your partner follow behind and fill it up again?"  The hole digger wiped his brow and sighed "well, I suppose it probably looks odd because we're normally a three person team, but today the lad who plants the trees called in sick".  Rotarian Steve Cook thanked Tom for entertaining us on St. Patrick's Day.
    St. Patrick's Day Celebration Tom Moran 2022-03-17 04:00:00Z 0

    Paul Harris Pin Presentation

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    Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler made arrangements for a special presentation, actually two (2) presentations to former Rotarian, Lola Reid Allin.  Lola was presented with her Level 5 and Level 6 Paul Harris awards, after the fact, but the photo captured the occasion very well.  Co-chair of the International Service Committee Dr. Ruth Mathieson was present and very pleased to present Lola with her two pins.  Lola will continue with her work on the International Service Committee.  On behalf of the Rotary Club of Belleville, Lola was congratulated on such a  high level of achievement and for her generous support to the Rotary International Foundation.
    Paul Harris Pin Presentation 2022-03-16 04:00:00Z 0

    Ukraine Relief Efforts

    Due to the escalating tragedy of the Russian invasion of the Ukraine and the humanitarian crisis that is unfolding, the Rotary Club of Belleville convened a special meeting of the Board to determine next steps in support.  Beyond the funds already allocated by the International Service Committee to Shelter Box and the Red Cross, a special ask has been made of Spending Committee Chairs for any funds that could be made available from their budgets that have not yet been currently allocated or to be spent that could be directed to the International Service Committee, who will seek out the best avenues for allocating funds, with the goal of receiving matching grants for those donations.  The Rotary Club of Belleville will investigate through the 2022/2023 budget process the potential for an allocation of support in our next Rotary year to deal with the ongoing challenges this situation is creating.  Bob Wallace the Director of the Rotary Foundation for District 7070 has advised of various vehicles that Rotary Clubs can use to support the people of the Ukraine.  Currently the Rotary Club of Toronto is donating $15,000 towards Ukraine Aid via ShelterBox Canada and an additional $15,000 has been set up for a dollar for dollar matching grant campaign.  Health Partners International of Canada (HPIC) have pledged to mobilize a minimum of 400 Humanitarian Medical Kits.  Each HMK consists of 600 treatments that will provide medical aid to Ukrainians in need.  All Rotarians received a letter from Bob Wallace that outlined three (3) recommendations for Rotary Clubs looking to provide support for the Ukraine.  The District 7070 Foundation Committee has proposed that the District will match all Rotarian and club donations to the Disaster Response Fund up to $25,000.  In addition, it was decided that we would also receive donations from the club membership and you can donate through Club Runner and would augment these funds with other funds in the club made available to the International Service Committee to maximize the contribution from our club to relief efforts for the people of Ukraine displaced by this act of aggression by Russia.
    The situation in Ukraine is simply heart breaking and Rotary sees the urgent need to respond and provide immediate support and relief.  Thank you for your consideration and support for the people of the Ukraine during this extremely challenging period of time. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact President Darrell Smith, President-Elect Cory MacKay, Vice President Peter Malone or International Service Committee Co-Chairs Dr. Ruth Mathieson or Rotarian Terry Thomas about opportunities for assistance.
    Ukraine Relief Efforts President Darrell Smith 2022-03-10 05:00:00Z 0

    Sharing Belleville Memories

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    President-Elect Cory MacKay introduced Connie Carson, a great leader in our community.   Connie Carson has been a realtor in the Quinte area for over 43 years. In that time she has been an active part of many great organizations including; Bay Of Quinte Yacht Club, The Enrichment Centre For Mental Health, Three Oaks, Quinte Home Builders , 100 Women Who Care , Walk A Mile In Her Shoes, Children's Safety Village,Community Champion recipient and BGH Community Hero. She currently serves on The Belleville Heritage Committee and is a passionate advocate for sharing what she loves most about this beautiful city. Connie is the founder and moderator of the 12,000+ member facebook group "Sharing Belleville Memories" where people share their own stories and read her articles on the topic. Her latest book "Memories of Belleville" explores a few of the dozens of stories Connie has written on downtown Belleville.
    In January of 2020, Connie had a coffee with a friend who suggested she write a blog about downtown Belleville.  A short month later, the world changed with COVID and Connie was facing some personal health challenges as well.  As she began to heal, she spent time writing stories of growing up in Belleville.  By November of that same year, Connie had about 15 stories written and came up with the idea of starting a Facebook group to share some good memories with others. Currently there are over 12,300 members from all over the country, connecting with friends, family and school mates, sharing memories and reminiscing.  By this time she had 25 stories written and decided to hire a local publisher and publish her own book just before Christmas 2021.  The first print was 250 copies, but they have sold out numerous times and are now on their 4th printing.  Connie's stories are about hard working people during the depression years, the 1936 flood in Belleville just before WWII.  Connie's mom worked with many folk in Belleville, including Louis Tsichas at the Cozy Grill and the Diana Grill.  There were plenty of young families and lots going on in the City.  Her mentors were Joe Burke, Maurice Rollins and Max Haggarty and they left a mark on her young life.  Connie gave credit to the firemen who worked at the Fire Hall on Moira Street, who kept an eye on her and her siblings while her mom, a single mom, was still at work.  They left quite an impression on her.
    Past President Doug Peterson formally thanked Connie for her presentation and congratulated her on the success of her projects.  It is refreshing how Connie turned a negative into something positive and encouraged so many people.  She has unique energy and enthusiasm and the heart of her stories are familiar to everyone.
    Sharing Belleville Memories Connie Carson 2022-03-03 05:00:00Z 0

    Peace International School in Rwanda

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    Dr. Ruth Mathieson, Co-Chair of the Club's International Service Committee introduced Gordon Graham.  Gordon was born and raised in Marathon, an isolated town on the north shore of lake Superior.  He attended Marathon High School, followed by a post secondary education at Algonquin College in Tool and Dye Making, and later at Ryerson Technical Institute, taking Control System Automation. Gordon used his engineering skills and worked in many different places across Canada, including Montreal, Toronto, Sault Ste Marie, Thunder Bay, the Oil Sands of Alberta, and even two years in Indonesia. Three years in one place was considered a long time!  Gordon married his high school sweetheart, Joyce and together they have two children and a grand daughter.  Joyce accompanied Gordon on all his assignments.  Twelve years ago, Gordon retired and since then, he and Joyce has lived in their RV called "Lucky", wintering in Arizona.  In 2018, they decided to support the International Peace School in Rwanda and had the opportunity to visit the school in 2019.
    Gordon thanked Dr. Ruth for arranging today's presentation to the Rotary Club of Belleville and noted that Rotarians solve problems, locally as well as internationally.  He also thanked the Club for their donation to the Peace International School in Rwanda in 2020.  Following their visit to the International Peace School in Rwanda, both Gordon and Joyce felt as though that was their personal focus, an opportunity to expand Rotary's humanitarian reach.  Their purposeful mission is to ensure education, restore peace and complete the high school.  It has been difficult during COVID and things have been at a standstill since 2019.  The delays have weighed heavily on Gordon and Joyce's minds and in August 2020, their appeal for funding was re-activated with work starting in 2021.  The goal is to have Grades 7 and 8 open as of September 2022.  Following is a video of the work that has been done as well as some photos of the current school that houses Nursery to Grade 6.  Anyone wishing to make a donation can do so online at pisemmchtransfer@gmail.com or contact Gordon directly by email at piscompletionfund@gmail.com
    Rotarian and Past President Ken Dickson thanked Gordon and Joyce for the work they have done on this project.  Countries have recovered thanks to initiatives such as this.
    Peace International School in Rwanda Gordon and Joyce Graham 2022-02-17 05:00:00Z 0

    Classification Talk

    Heather Hall recently moved to the Quinte area from Brantford, Ontario with her husband and two children.  She transferred her Rotary membership to the Rotary Club of Belleville in October 2019.  On February 3rd, Heather shared a little bit about her background and her career in a Classification Talk.  As she was working on her presentation, her son Noah wanted to know what a classification talk was all about and intuitively described his mom as smart, weird, kind, pretty and knows what she's doing with furniture!
    Heather grew up in Central Newfoundland, Grand Falls-Windsor, graduated high school and attended Memorial University in St. John's, four hours away from home.  She spent four years at University and earned a Bachelor of Arts with a major in French and Linguistics.  Following that she enrolled in Law School at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton and was awarded her Law Degree in 2002, twenty years ago!  She was called to the Bar in 2003 and did her articling in Ottawa at a bilingual firm where she discovered practicing law in French versus speaking French were very different.  In 2004 she joined Waterous Holden Amey Hitchon, LLP as partner and spent fifteen years there doing civil litigation exclusively -- employment litigation, estate litigation and personal injury.  Her favourite practice area was personal injury, medical malpractice and spending many hours reading medical reports.  In 2019, Heather made the difficult decision to step back as a litigator where she was extremely busy and with her husband, they decided to relocate to this area.  Heather has family here and in 2015, they had purchased a place in Prince Edward County and spent their summers here and then ultimately decided to move right before COVID started.  They love the way of life here.  Both her children have joined the Batawa Ski Racing Team and Heather is looking forward to getting back to work in the legal world.  For the past two years, Heather has been teaching her children at home and hopes to become more involved in Rotary.  For starters she will be working on a fundraising idea that was successful with Brantford Rotary called Clowns for Kids, raising $500,000.  Sam Brady thanked Heather for her presentation and welcomed her officially to our community, to the Rotary Club and to Batawa, where Heather's children and Sam's daughter are on the same ski team.
    Classification Talk Heather Hall 2022-02-03 05:00:00Z 0

    Literacy Project Global Grant

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    Literacy Chair and Rotarian Sharon McConnell spoke to the Rotary Club of Belleville about a successful global grant under the literacy project umbrella in Bangladesh.  It was a large grant of $73,000 U.S. over a five year span of 2015 to 2020.  Two Rotary Clubs co-sponsored the project -- the Rotary Club of Belleville and the Rotary Club of Dhaka Midtown along with the Amarok Society as a partner.  Overall the funding came from three Districts with eleven Clubs providing funds, including Belleville.  The funds raised were matched by the Districts and the Rotary International Global Fund.  The Amarok Society is a small NGO operating and overseeing 23 Amarok Schools where mothers from slum neighbourhoods are taught literacy two hours a day.  The mothers, in turn, become their own micro-schools with a minimum of 5 children each who are taught by the mothers one hour a day.  The skills acquired include basic literacy, math and English.  The goal is to get the children up to speed so they can be transferred once the skills are learned, into government schools.  Children in government schools are taught three hours a day and are considered full-time students.  Tuition is free, but learning materials are paid for by the children. The purpose of the grant is to introduce participants to digital skills by providing equipment (tablets and laptops) and training and to develop curriculum in Bengali, English and Math.  The project also collects data and administers tests to measure progress.  Drama development through video storytelling is introduced and has been successful in influencing social practices.  Both the mothers and children become digitally literate and the program graduated 450 students who were transferred to government schools.  Jobs became more available that required internet skills and the mothers and students learned how to advocate for themselves.
    The outcomes of the project included 700 mothers who acquired digital skills, the goal was 500 as well as 3,675 children, goal was 2,500.  The world of Internet was opened to them and of the students who transferred to government schools, 62% performed in the top 10% of their class and nine received government scholarships.  All of the students graduated high school and several went on the post-secondary.  Some of the mothers started their own businesses and many were able to secure higher income jobs.  Social issues such as child marriage, domestic violence and eve calling (bullying) were acted out through video presentations that resulted in significant attitudinal changes in families and neighbourhoods.   Teach a mother, change the world.  The Rotary Club of Belleville is very proud to have been involved with this project that produced very positive outcomes.
    The current project, a digital reading App, developed by past Rotarian Michael Maloney who is a literacy specialist, has been made available to Rotary at a cost of $1,000 U.S. which works out to $40 per student to teach them to read.  Each purchase includes 60 lessons and internet licenses for up to 24 students that can be used in a group setting or by individuals.  No training is needed and the App can be used locally in schools, community centers, libraries and church groups as well as internationally.  English is a prized asset in the job market.  A pilot project is currently in place in Bangladesh as well as being used by 300 homeschoolers.  Basic education and literacy is the 6th area of focus of Rotary and introduced during RI President Wilf Wilkinson's term in 2007/2008. The Rotary Club of Belleville in support of this area of focus developed a tutoring program called Each One Teach One through the local library and YMCA that although proved to be labour intensive, operated for ten years.  Rotary also participated in Spelling Bees in the District for three years and most recently was a co-sponsor of the Global Grant in Bangladesh for over nine years.  The Digital Reading App project will be coordinated through the Rotary Club of Belleville with contacts made with other Rotary Clubs to expand the project locally as well as internationally.  The power of Rotary is evident.  A big deal according to Sharon McConnell who has seen the success of these projects around the world.  Here is link promoting the Digital Reading App by Past President of Rotary International, Wilf Wilkinson, Valarie Wafer, VP of Rotary International and Literacy Chair Sharon McConnell https://youtu.be/mLXLP7XJSxY
    Literacy Project Global Grant Sharon McConnell 2022-01-20 05:00:00Z 0

    Introduction of New Members

    Hazzem Koudsi was introduced to the Club by Treasurer Karen Baker.  Hazzem is the Executive Director for Habitat for Humanity.  He is also involved in other community organizations including Vice-Chair of the Quinte Humane Society, responsible for the new building, is a member of the Belleville Chamber of Commerce and Sales and Ad Club.  Hazzem's career was with the Canada Revenue Agency, but after a short retirement, he re-located to Belleville where he quickly filled his retirement with a second career and other community related initiatives.  Hazzem considers it a privilege to join a well recognized Rotary Club such as Belleville.
    Katherine MacIver was introduced to the Club by Rotarian Hugh Campbell, is the Director of Education for Hastings and Prince Edward School Board and moved to Belleville in the summer of 2021 when she was hired by HPEDSB.Katherine MacIver comes to the top education role with more than 25 years of experience in elementary and secondary schools.  Katherine most recently worked as a superintendent of education at the Trillium Lakelands District School Board. MacIver joined the Trillium Lakelands board as a secondary school principal in 2010 after having been a teacher and administrator at elementary and secondary schools at the Keewatin-Patricia District School Board.  The HPEDSB includes 39 elementary schools, 8 secondary schools with over 18,400 students, 1,070 teachers and 705 support staff so Katherine is one busy leader.   Katherine is excited to join the Rotary Club of Belleville, to meet everyone and be of collective service with other members..
    Introduction of New Members 2022-01-06 05:00:00Z 0

    Mayor Mitch Panciuk

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    Mayor Mitch Panciuk was Rotary's guest speaker on January 6th, taking us through a "look back at 2021" and a "look forward to 2022".  Introduced by Past President Tim McKinney, Mayor Panciuk first of all thanked the members of the Rotary Club of Belleville for their long tradition of "service above self" and continuing their work in the community.
    The year 2021 proved to be a test, adapting and surviving through COVID, a test of community resolve and commitment, pivoting and adapting.  We tried to follow the three "C's" -- cool, calm and collected.  In 2021, two new councillors joined City Council -- Tyler Allsopp and Carol Feeney at about the same time that MacLean's Magazine named the City of Belleville as #4 Best Community to Live In across Canada!  Wow!  Council focused on outdoor recreation with the Hillcrest park area where the Children's Safety Village is slated to be relocated as well as the future lawn bowling site.  A playground and pickle ball area, spray pad and basketball courts will be included as well.  Let It Grow initiative was started to protect pollinators also known as "pardon the weeds" campaign.  The Quinte Sports and Wellness Center has actively held a vaccination clinic, conducting 2,500 vaccinations a day, the highest capacity area in Ontario.  The Downtown Business Association welcomed Luisa Sorrentino, Executive Director to focus on a better offering of services to the community.  The Ontario Business Improvement Association presented Belleville with an award in 2021 for marketing and rebranding!  The Pop-Ups returned to West Zwick's Park and had their best year with some enhancements to take place in 2022.  The Egerton Boyce Bike Lane, connecting the City to Loyalist College with the trail extension off of Avondale Road, named after Councillor Egerton Boyce who served for 15 years in the City.  The City welcomed Fire Chief Monique Belair in 2021, a leader in transformation, off to a great start.  The Catherine Street pedestrian bridge, to be named the Ben Corke Bridge, received federal government approval and the first arch arrived in December 2021 with work continuing through 2022.  The Bayshore Trail named after former Mayor Shirley Langer will extend from Herchimer east to Farley, a 1.5 km loop with the summer of 2022 as the official opening.  An exclusive franchise IHop will open at the former 10 Acre Truck Stop, now owned by K2.  The Roundabout at Farnham and Maitland was named after Jackie Denyes, a 15 year Councillor in close proximity to the new Dog Park named after the Late Pat Culhane. After many years of planning, the Belleville Police Service opened on Sidney Street in October 2020 with a grand opening ceremony of former Chiefs and Mayors as well as staff members, retired and active.  An outdoor event took place in September 2021 to recognize National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a respectful opportunity to reflect on history and move forward.  And the list goes on.  The Mayor encouraged folks to visit the parks and newly installed plaques where much history is recorded.
    The year 2022 looking forward will be as busy with an $87 million Capital budget approved to work on parks and roads.  Council is optimistically working on a 4th 401 interchange called Belleville East Arterial Route (BEAR).  Construction on the former and new fairgounds will show much activity, but not at taxpayers' expense.  The sale of land will offset the new costs.  The opening of the new Humane Society on Wallbridge-Loyalist Road will happen in 2022 along with some other provincial announcements and a few more surprises!.  The future is bright and Council's focus is to make improvements to the quality of life, creating better prospects for our future, to build responsibly and make continual progress to serve the community.
    Rotarian and Councillor Carol Feeney thanked Mayor Panciuk for his virtual tour of 2021, looking forward to 2022.
    Mayor Mitch Panciuk 2022-01-06 05:00:00Z 0

    Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign

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    The following information has been provided by Dianne Spencer to President Darrell, Fellow Rotarians and guests,
    Many Rotarians have seen the media report earlier this week announcing the results of the Salvation Army’s Kettle Campaign - which totalled $322,711, surpassing their goal of $315,000.  This in spite of the challenges of Covid, and a shortened campaign period.
    Dianne offered some Happy Bucks to recognize the participation of Belleville Rotarians in their support leading to this wonderful result - 29 Rotarians stepped up to help with the kettle at the LCBO; collectively giving 110 hours, or 4 days and 14 hours of their personal time. Special kudos to two Rotarians who each volunteered 10 hours to the campaign - Nadine Langlois and Marg Wagner - wow! Kudos as well to those who volunteered 6 hours to attend to the kettle: Ian Acton, Karen Baker, Brenda Snider, Jamie Trudeau and Ken Wheeler! 
    Valerie, our Salvation Army contact, advises that $16,381 was raised at the kettle at LCBO, making it the top location for the month of December. Of course the Salvation Army is very appreciative of the Club’s support.
    This great team effort was pulled together on behalf of the Club thanks to technical support provided by Kerry Paul, and the super organizational efforts of Carol-Lynn Burnett-Michaud and Secretary extraordinaire Jo-Anne Wheeler - a huge thank you to each of them.
    Dianne also wanted to recognize the efforts of six non-Rotarians who volunteered, adding another 34 hours to the time provided to support the Salvation Army. The bottom line - a total of 144 hours was provided to help with the kettle campaign by 29 Rotarians and 6 other volunteers. 
    Dianne was pleased to donate $35 in Happy Bucks to celebrate a fabulous team effort, which helped achieve a fabulous campaign result in support of our community. Thank you!
    Salvation Army Christmas Kettle Campaign Dianne Spencer 2022-01-06 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Reindeer Park at Corby Rose Garden

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    Following the Santa Claus Parade and Rotary's feature of their Reindeer Park, Peter Malone advises that the Rotary Reindeer herd is feasting away at Corby Rose Garden for the holiday season.  This is the third year in the making of the Rotary Reindeers and the City of Belleville have been great supporters of this project.  If all goes well this year, the City are happy to let us erect this display each year following the Sata Claus parade.
    A few of the reindeer numbers are spending time with Rotarian friends and some are back with their generous donor families for the holiday, so the herd is a little smaller than can be seen at the Santa Claus parade.  Here's looking forward to the community enjoying this display over the holidays and enjoying some Rotary holiday cheer.  Peter thanked all who supported the committee with the reindeer park each year.
    Rotary Reindeer Park at Corby Rose Garden Peter Malone 2021-12-17 05:00:00Z 0

    Christmas Flowers

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    President Darrell Smith was contacted by Sandi Ramsey, President of the Rotary Club of Trenton about a multi-club Christmas Sweat Equity Project that would see Christmas plants delivered to local hospitals, long term care homes, retirement residences and VON caregivers in the Quinte area.  This initiative was put in place by Dahlia May Flower Farm earlier in December with a call out to the community to assist with delivery of over 3,000 plants over a two day blitz.  Seven (7) Rotary Clubs stepped up with volunteers, including the Rotary Club of Belleville.  When we put out the call for help in delivering all of these plants throughout the community the Rotary club stepped up to the plate, with seven different rotary chapters involved and more volunteers then we almost knew what to do with!  JB Print donated a greeting card with each plant, Dahlia provided the labour and invited sponsors to support the cost of the plant.  Students in the community hand-made 3,000 cards to go with the plants as well.  Lots of colour to let the seniors in these homes know that their community was thinking about them over the holidays.  A warm gesture of love and caring.  Thank you to all who helped.
    Christmas Flowers 2021-12-13 05:00:00Z 0

    Annual General Meeting

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    The Annual General Meeting of the Rotary Club of Belleville was called to order under the leadership of Treasurer Karen Baker who presented the 2020/2021 Audited Financial Statements with Michael McMurray, Welch LLP.  Carol-Lynn Burnett Michaud made the motion to approve the Minutes of the December 10, 2020 AGM, the motion was seconded by Judy McKnight with all in favour.  Treasurer Karen Baker walked the Club through this year's audited financial statements and summarized the club as having excellent financial results.  Karen complimented the members for their good stewardship of monies while continuing the good work of Rotary in the community and abroad.  Karen Baker made the motion to accept the audited statement for the period ending June 30, 2021, seconded by Tracy Bray with all in favour.
    Karen Baker made the motion to approve Welch LLP as auditors for the 2021/2022 Rotary Year, seconded by Len Kennedy with all in favour.  Motion carried.
    President Darrell Smith read  Past President Tim McKinney's report to the Club in review of the 2020/2021 Rotary Year.
    President Darrell Smith introduced the Board of Directors for the 2022/2023 Rotary Year as follows:
    • President Cory MacKay
    • Past President Darrell Smith
    • President Elect Peter Malone
    • Treasurer Karen Baker
    • Secretary Jo-Anne Wheeler
    • Director Carol-Lynn Burnett Michaud
    • Director Randy Coker
    • Director Heather Hall
    • Director Collin Myers
    • Director Rosi Ouellette
    • Director Samantha Reid
    • Director Terrence Thomas
    • Director Tracey Vandervoort
    President Darrell Smith made the motion to approve the slate of nominees, seconded by Judy McKnight with all in favour.
    A motion to adjourn the 2021 AGM was made by Cory MacKay, seconded by Bill MacKay, motion was carried.
    Annual General Meeting Treasurer Karen Baker 2021-12-09 05:00:00Z 0

    Nibinamik Education Center

    The Indigenous Peoples Partnership Cluster is working with the Nibinamik Education Center on a new project.  Nibinamik or Beaver Summer is a fly-in community, 490 km northeast of Thunder Bay.  The ice road distance is 770 km and it takes approximately 22 hours to drive the distance from Nibinamik First Nation to Thunder Bay.  The community has StarLink internet service since this summer and the teachers are trying to incorporate more technology into their teaching program.  After Grade 8, many students attend Keewaytinook Internet High School and it would be very advantageous to have more laptops to use with the students before they reach high school.  It would provide an opportunity for them to familiarize themselves with the software programs, assist with researching school programs and prepare them for the next step in their education.
    The IPPC will ensure the laptops are ready to go and will cover the cost of shipping to Nibinamik.  Anyone with laptops they wish to donate, please contact Chair of the IPPC, Birgit Wartenberg and arrangements will be made for pick-up or drop off.  Please see below for more information.  Project deadline is January 15, 2022. 
    Nibinamik Education Center Birgit Wartenberg - IPPC 2021-12-05 05:00:00Z 0

    Mayors of the Week

    Community | Students from local high schools participated in the Rotary Club of Belleville's Mayors of the Week program. The week-long experience with the Mayor's office was a great opportunity to learn about and observe municipal government in action. They toured City Hall, Police Services, Fire and Emergency Services, the Engineering Department, the Water Treatment Plant, the Sewage Treatment Plant, the City Administrator's Office, the Economic Development Office and the City Works Yard. Participating this year are: Aurora Zech from Nicholson Catholic College, Karthi Goms from Centennial Secondary School, Dante Duffus from Albert College and Leo Kim from Eastside Secondary School.
    Three (3) of the "Mayors" were introduced to the Rotary Club at their lunch meeting on November 25th by Rotarian Jennifer Savini who is the Chair of the program.  The Mayors of the Week program has been in place since 1969 and the participating schools select the students who show civic leadership and an interest in helping their communities.  The students meet at various City locations each afternoon for a week, accompanied by Rotarians.  They are given tours of City facilities, meet with senior staff and the Mayor and attend a City Council meeting.  Jennifer saw first hand the Mayor and other staff generously providing their time and noted the students experiencing a number of aspects of how a municipality operates.  One of the Mayors, Aurora Zech, a Grade 11 student from Nicolson, was unable to attend today, but she expressed a great interest in government and administration.  Thank you to John Smale for heading up this program for many years and passing the baton to Jennifer along with his notes and a number of recommendations and hints.  Jennifer also thanked the Rotarians who accompanied the students around the community -- Tracy Bray, Darrell Smith, Karen Baker and Shannon Neely.
    Dante Duffus attends Albert College and was honoured to be part of the program and speak with the Rotary Club today.  He is currently enrolled in Canadian and International Politics and was pleased to be able to experience that side of Belleville's operations.  He especially enjoyed seeing the library, the police station and the bus depot and to learn about different community initiatives.  He noted the old archives at the library as well as the artist exhibits.  Dante saw some chemistry at work at the police station in the Forensic Identification area and the precautions they take every day and how the police officers handle themselves.  The CSI of Belleville in action!  The green initiatives associated with the transportation sector of the City caught his interest and Dante realized the importance of efficiency in transportation.
    Karthi Goms is in Grade 12 at Centennial Secondary School and was pleased to participate in the program and meet her peers from different schools.  She saw some career opportunities she was not aware of.  The water treatment plant was very organized even though some of the equipment was old, there were many technical advances in the pre-treatment and filtration systems.  Karthi was pleased to hear Chief Callaghan's commitment to have 30% female police officers by the end of 2030.  She was inspired by this diversity and plan and gaining knowledge for the future.
    Leo Kim is a grade 12 student at Eastside Secondary and plans on pursuing business at universiaty.  The opportunity to see how the City operates as a business was very interesting to Leo.  Conserving energy by reducing heat at the Wellness Center and the "on demand" bus program showed him examples of reducing costs overall.  He jokingly said knowing a little more about the bus pick-up spots and destinations would have helped him a lot.  Leo recalled visiting a police station many years ago and realized today is much more science applied, made him feel older.
    The students thanked Rotary for organizing and keeping this program active even with the challenges of COVID.  Past President Shannon Neely thanked the students for their observations and sharing with everyone.
    Mayors of the Week Jennifer Savini 2021-11-25 05:00:00Z 0

    Remembrance Day Program

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    Rotarian and Past President John Cairns introduced William March, a graduate of the Royal Military College and the University of Victoria.  William (Bill) spent almost 42 years in the Canadian Forces and RCAF as both a line-navigator on maritime patrol aircraft and a staff officer in Canada, Europe and Afghanistan.  He was most fortunate during his time in uniform to spend a total of 10 years as the Air Force Historian.  Bill has written or edited numerous articles and publications on aerospace power history.  He volunteers with the National Air Force Museum of Canada in different capacities, most recently as a member of the Museum Foundation.  Bill is on the editorial board for the Canadian Aviation Historical Society Journal and is a contributing editor for Airforce magazine.
    William thanked everyone for their warm welcome and advised he would be speaking about the sacrifices of aviation in WWI.  Open cockpits.  No heat.  No oxygen.  The majority of aviators with the Commonwealth and Canada did not return from the war or if they did, they needed care.  There was, even against these odds, no shortage of people applying with 25,000 Canadian who served in the Air Force from 1914 to 1918.  We have heard and recognize the names of heroes such as Billy Bishop who served in both wars and William Barker.  But today, William wanted to talk about 2nd Lt. Alan McLeod (pictured here), born April 1899 in the village of Stonewall, Selkirk, Manitoba.  Alan Arnett McLeod VC was a Canadian soldier, aviator and a recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces. McLeod served as a pilot in the Royal Flying Corps and later the Royal Air Force during the First World War.
    After previously being turned away due to his age, Alan McLeod joined the Royal Flying Corps Canada (R.F.C.C.) 20 April 1917—his 18th birthday. He was sent to the University of Toronto for military training, then to Long Branch and Camp Borden for flight training. He was commissioned a Temporary 2nd Lieutenant (on probation), 19 August 1917.
    On 20 August 1917, 2nd Lieutenant McLeod boarded the Canadian Pacific passenger liner S.S. Metagama and sailed to Bantry Bay, Ireland. For the next four months McLeod continued to train as a pilot in the Royal Air Force. He then joined No. 2 Squadron on the Western Front.
    On 27 March 1918, McLeod, with his observer Lieutenant Arthur Hammond, in an Armstrong Whitworth F.K.8 destroyed an enemy triplane and were immediately attacked by eight more, three of which they brought down. During the fight, both McLeod and Hammond were wounded by machine gun bullets, the petrol tank was punctured and the aircraft set on fire. McLeod instantly pushed her over into a very steep side slip, but the flames were scorching him, and so he jumped out of his cockpit on to the left wing and crouched low, with the joystick pulled hard over in his right hand. Then he smashed a hole through the fabric in the fuselage so that he could reach the rudder-wire with his left hand, and so he guided her towards the lines.  In this way he kept the flames away from his wounded observer and prevented the aircraft from burning up. When the machine finally crashed in No Man's Land, the young pilot, not minding his own injuries, dragged his comrade from the burning wreckage and under heavy fire carried him to comparative safety, before collapsing from exhaustion and loss of blood. 
    Lt. Kirschstein of Jasta 6 an experienced ace was credited with the victory. McLeod was wounded three times in the side and Hammond was wounded six times.
    McLeod was recommended for a Distinguished Service Order but received the Victoria Cross. He returned to Canada (Stonewall, Manitoba) to recuperate but died from the Spanish Influenza epidemic shortly thereafter. He was only 5 months away from celebrating his 20th birthday.  Lt. A. McLeod encapsulates the impact of lessor known heroes and their astounding contribution to the war efforts.
    Remembrance Day Program William March 2021-11-11 05:00:00Z 0

    Literacy Project

    Sharon McConnell, Chair of the Literacy Committee for the Rotary Club of Belleville and it seems the "go to" person in the District in the area of literacy has provided an update on a program in Bangladesh.
    Literacy Project Sharon McConnell 2021-11-06 04:00:00Z 0

    Kids Against Hunger

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    On Saturday, October 30th, some members of the Rotary Club of Belleville helped deliver Kids Against Hunger meals to Belleville for distribution.  Gleaners Food Bank, the Salvation Army and United Way Hastings & Prince Edward were the recipients of over 14,000 meals because of the efforts of the members of the Rotary Club of Belleville and the Kids Against Hunger committee.  The Rotary Club of Belleville, McDougall Insurance, Kelly and Deborah McKinney and Nicholas and Evelyn Savini provided the funds that will help make a small difference in the lives of those living with food insecurity.  “In addition to helping locally, the Rotary Club of Belleville was able to partner with Kids Against Hunger Canada and will be providing meals to school aged children in Haiti”, said Committee Chair Jennifer Savini. “Over 6,500 meals will be shipped to Haiti to help deal with the ongoing food crisis in that country.”
    Belleville Rotarians also learned what it takes to get the food to some of the most remote areas in Haiti.  Tony Jones, who is with Kids Against Hunger Canada, said that that the trip to deliver the food is a 10-hour trip using donkeys that are used to navigate the mountain paths that must be travelled.  The photo shows the method of transportation in the rugged country of Haiti.  Once there, meals are prepared three times a week to school aged children, which is often the only meal that would be consumed during the week.  As a global network that strives to build a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change, Rotary values diversity and celebrates the contributions of people of all backgrounds, regardless of their age, ethnicity, race, color, abilities, religion, socioeconomic status, culture, sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity.
    Kids Against Hunger Jennifer Savini 2021-11-06 04:00:00Z 0

    Director of Emergency Services and Fire Chief

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    Director of Emergency Services and Fire Chief for Belleville Fire and Emergency Services, Monique Belair is a skilled and articulate Fire Service Leader with 30+ years of knowledge and experience planning, developing and implementing programs and processes in the fire service and field of emergency management.
    When Monique Belair decided to apply to be a fire fighter, she didn't know that her height would be the most important attribute she could bring to the table.  In 1985 she met the height requirement of 5'8" being 5'9" and was offered a position with the Canadian Armed Forces.  She took basic training at CFB Borden at their Fire Academy and graduated in 1986 in a non-traditional career for women.  When she left the military she was one of five females who served in the CAF.  From there she became the first female Deputy Fire Chief in Oakville, followed with being the first female Deputy Fire Chief in St. Catharines.  Monique has had the privilege to represent the Office of the Fire Marshall and to serve a number of communities in Ontario.  She has taken two oaths in her career, one with the Canadian Armed Forces, a pledge to serve at 18 years of age and one when she was sworn in as Fire Chief in Belleville, a pledge to this community and she has taken both seriously.
    One of Fire Chief Belair's most important projects came to life while working in Oakville.  As the Deputy Fire Chief through her initiative Camp Molly Halton.  Camp Molly provides an educational and empowering experience for young females between the ages of 15 - 18 the opportunity of a practical learning experience about a career in fire services.  Fire Chief Belair is focused on bringing the Camp Molly program to this area.
    Fire Prevention Officer Brad Reynolds spoke to everyone about the importance of learning the sounds of fire safety, the difference between the sound of a smoke alarm (3 continuous beeps) and a carbon monoxide alarm (4 continuous beeps), low battery beeps.  Because Belleville has a large hearing impaired population, Brad prepared a video using sign language, vetted by the deaf community and shared on social media.  Brad recommended everyone has a carbon monoxide alarm installed in their home, tested monthly and inspected annually.  Check outside vents and chimneys to ensure they are clear and unencumbered.  Brad also spoke about emergency preparedness in the event of an abnormal situation that could threaten public safety and health and property such as snow/ice storms, fire, earthquakes, floods, power outages.  It is his job to make people aware and educate them on what they can do in the event of such a situation.  People should be prepared to sustain themselves and their families for up to 72 hours, having food and water, medication, clothing supplies, identification, etc.  The City has emergency guides available to the public to understand and be prepared.  Fire Chief Belair will be designating new staff to review emergency preparedness for the City to ensure we address and reach out to the community.  The Fire Department will continue with fire prevention in schools and address risk management and to establish an increased visible presence in 2022.
    Rotarian and Past President Kristin Crowe thanked Fire Chief Belair and Fire Prevention Officer Reynolds for their presentation to the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Our community is fortunate to have Fire Chief Belair's determination and commitment.  Thank you for sparking our attention.
    Director of Emergency Services and Fire Chief Monique Belair 2021-10-28 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary End Polio Now Tulip Planting

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    On Thursday, October 21 at 2pm, the Rotary Club of Belleville planted some 500 Rotary End Polio Now Tulips in support of Rotary's Polio Plus Program to free the world from polio. All net proceeds from the club's purchase of the tulips go directly to Polio Plus. With support and cooperation from the City of Belleville, the tulips were planted around the Rotary "Children of Hope" monument located at the corner of Station and Pinnacle streets. The site of the "Children of Hope" monument is very fitting as the Polio Plus Program is delivering on Rotary's promise to the children of the world to eradicate polio so that no child's life will be sacrificed to this deadly, crippling disease.
    The Rotary End Polio Now Tulip, "the tulip that's saving lives", began as a project by Dutch Rotarians in 2013. The project  purchased the rights to name and sell a new variety of tulip. The project has developed into a very successful fundraiser. To date, over 1.5 million of  tulips have been sold, raising over $2 million US to help fight polio. The Rotary Club of Belleville is joining many other clubs in Canada, the USA, Germany, Switzerland, France and Holland in this tulip plant.
    The Rotary Club has attractive gift boxes, containing 25 of these beautiful tulips for sale at $25 a box.. The End polio Now tulip features a yellow base highlighted with a red flame. The packaging explains the Polio eradication program and contains planting instructions. Once Rotary reimburses the supplier, the net proceeds, about $12, go to Polio Plus. When the funds are matched 2 to 1 by Rotary's partner, the Gates Foundation, the proceeds from each box will vaccinate 40 children against polio. By purchasing a gift box, you can deliver a lifesaving gift to the children of the world.
    This Rotary End polio Now tulip planting is one of hundreds of events undertaken by Rotary clubs around the world to celebrate World Polio Day. The purpose of World Polio Day, held on October 24 this year is to raise funds and awareness for Rotary's battle to End Polio Now. Since the first Rotary led polio vaccination effort in the Philippines in 1979, Rotary has contributed $2.2 billion US and countless volunteer hours to vaccinate over 3 billion children in 122 countries.  The program has had tremendous success. In 1986 when Polio Plus was launched, over 350,000 people worldwide were stricken with polio each year. So far in 2021, only 2 cases have been reported in the 2 countries where polio is still circulating, Pakistan and Afghanistan.  Rotary is so close to winning the battle. But everyone's support is still needed to finish the job. Because, as long as the virus is circulating anywhere in the world, every child must be vaccinated. In total , 400 million children must be vaccinated each year.  Here is a photo of Belleville Rotarians hard at work planting tulips for the End Polio Now Tulip campaign.

    Rotary End Polio Now Tulip Planting Terry Thomas 2021-10-21 04:00:00Z 0

    Re-Imagine Quinte Healthcare

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    Prior to speaking to the Rotary Club of Belleville, Stacey Daub asked a few questions in a survey.
    • What do you value most about Quinte Health Care, our community hospitals and what we bring to the communities we serve?
    • What could we be doing better as an organization and with our partners, to meet the evolving needs of our patients, families and our communities?
    • One of the things we hear from people that our communities value is that our hospitals are "there for them".  What is most important to you about how our hospitals are there for you?
    • What is happening in your community and in the current environment that we should be paying attention to as we plan for the future of our hospitals?
    Passionate community building, lifelong learner and visionary health system leader, Stacey is the President and CEO of Quinte Health Care (QHC). Stacey got her start in the independent living movement, where she experienced a health and social care system designed around the providers and the system, rather than the people they served.  This experience ignited a passion to redesign health and social care systems with, and for, citizens and communities, with a focus on quality, compassion and a “one team” approach to care.    Her career spans three decades with a wide range of leadership experiences in hospital, home, community and primary care as well across urban and rural communities in Ontario.  
    Stacey believes in the importance of local health care and that it is people and community who fuel the health and wellness of communities.   Known for her collaborative leadership style, Stacey believes that her leadership impact is not best reflected by a list of accomplishments but by the collective experiences and outcomes of the people, teams and communities she has served over time.
    Stacey joined QHC following her time at North York General Hospital where she was Vice President Strategy, Integration and Digital Health.  Prior to this, Stacey was the President and CEO of Headwaters Health Care Centre, a rural/urban hospital where she helped to co-design the Hills of Headwaters collaborative, a first-generation Ontario Health Team.  Prior to that, Stacey was the CEO of the Toronto Central Community Care Access Centre, recognized for its groundbreaking work in home and community care. 
    Stacey has an MA from University of Waterloo, an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business and has garnered provincial and national recognition including: Top 100 Women of Canada, 20 Faces of Change, National Award for Organizational Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion, and Ministers Medal for Quality Improvement.    Stacey has served on several boards and advisory committees including the Ontario Hospital Association, the Change Foundation, Rotman School of Management: Health and Life Sciences and the Creative Destructive Lab.
    Stacey was born and raised in Kitchener Waterloo and has recently relocated with her family to Prince Edward County. 
    Stacey, because her father was a member of Kiwanis, understands the role that service clubs have in the community and was very pleased to meet the Belleville Rotarians, even via Zoom.  She credits her mother and mother-in-law, both nurses and both very compassionate people as having influenced her to choose a career in healthcare.  She knew she wanted to work in a community hospital where her and her family could live, work and play.  Her husband and two children (16 and 20) moved to this area in January 2021, arriving in the middle of a pandemic.  Now 18 months into the pandemic she has seen how it has affected staff.  Frontline healthcare workers are faced with the reality of the pandemic every day.  They are heroic and Stacey considers it a privilege to be among them.  Currently our area is lucky in the 4th wave.  Just take a look out west to see the effects of relaxing protocols, her heart goes out to them.  Cornwall is overwhelmed and have stopped surgeries.  These are challenging times.  Quinte Health Care has many leaders and Stacey is thankful for that. 
    Stacey's number one goal is to get out in the community.  Know and understand the communities, in its uniqueness.  What is different?  Walk the streets, introduce herself to the business owners and leaders in Picton, Bancroft, Trenton and Bellevillle.  She considers herself a fierce advocate for community hospitals.  The four hospitals under QHC umbrella are your hospitals.  We need to hear your voice to determine our future.  Re-Imagine QHC is a comprehensive process with four phased planning to shape processes, pollinate ideas and gather insights in order to create strategies and framework to go forward.
    Following considerable input from Rotarians with questions answered by Stacey, she thanked everyone for their support of QHC.  The important thing is to look at the big picture to determine what services can support the most people.  What do people want and need?  Use our collective energy.  What are our current level of care strengths?  Where can we improve?  Rotarian Sam Brady thanked Stacey for the information she shared today.  Health care here is vital and Sam thanked her for listening to our concerns.
    Re-Imagine Quinte Healthcare Stacey Daub, President and CEO 2021-10-14 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Fun Golf Day

    What a great day it was to meet at Trillium with fellow Rotarians and friends.  There were 22 golfers and an additional 9 who joined in for dinner.  A great meal, best steak in town!  Although competition was kept to a minimum there were some prize winners.  Shannon Neely and Nadine Langlois won longest drive in the men/ladies category.  Closest to the pin for the ladies was Linda Baltutis, wife of Rotarian John and closest to the pin for the men was Rotarian Peter Coy.  Thanks to organizers Jo-Anne and Ken Wheeler as well as Steve McCurdy who contributed the prizes to the winners. 
    One of the many golf foursomes -- Len Kennedy, Steve McCurdy, Bernie Ouellet and Wayne Dewe.  I think they are also known as the Poker Stars so they profess to be card sharks as well.
    Ken Wheeler was one of the original organizers of the Rotary Fun Day of Golf in partnership with Bob Michaud.  Ken has carried on with this annual event, for fun and fellowship and in memory of a great Rotarian who gave his all to each cause.  So thank you to Jo-Anne Wheeler and Ken for once again organizing a great afternoon.  Also captured in the photo is Rotarian Alan Kelly.
    Rotarian Dianne Spencer and her husband Murray joined in for dinner.  A great photo showing off the wonderful landscape of Trillium and some fall colours.
    Lots of other photos taken by Jo-Anne in between her golf shots.  The weather was beautiful.  A great way to start the long Thanksgiving weekend.
    Rotary Fun Golf Day Ken and Jo-Anne Wheeler 2021-10-07 04:00:00Z 0

    National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

    Rotarian Randy Coker introduced Chief Donald Maracle and Wilbert Maracle who attended a residential school from 1943 - 1947.  Many people ask "what can I do" and Chief Maracle kindly offered to provide some direction and information in that regard.  The residential schools operated in Canada between 1831 and 1996 when the Gordon Residential School in Punnichy, Saskatchewan was closed.  Altogether there were 139 recognized residential schools that operated in Canada with 17 in Ontario.  The residential schools were created and supported financially by the Canadian government and churches as an attempt to both educate and convert Indigenous youth and to integrate them into Canadian society, however, the schools disrupted lives and communities, causing long-term problems for indigenous people.  Children between the ages of 7 and 16 would attend these residential schools and it was estimated 150,000 children attended.  Children were forbidden from speaking their language.  They were subject to forced haircuts and shaved heads for the boys.  Their clothing was taken away.  The children never felt loved.  The schools neglected to provide sufficient nutrition.  Brothers and sisters were separated and segregated with total gender segregation.  And sadly there was physical, sexual, mental and spiritual abuse.  Records are incomplete, but it is estimated that 6,000 children died at residential schools (4% of attendees).   Many children never returned to their families or their culture. The residential school system eradicated Indian identity.  They were stripped of their language, their culture and way of life.  Chief Maracle believes the Creator is challenging us all to do better.
    Indigenous Peoples were initially viewed as the backbone of the economy, supplying fur for the fur trade and were invaluable to both the French and English crowns.  After the War of 1812 when there was no enemy on the horizon, Indigenous Peoples were in the way of progress.  The government wanted to settle them on reserves, while Europeans colonized their lands.  The indigenous people were faithful and fought and served in many wars including the Great War, WWII and Afghanistan but their alliance and allegiance was not reciprocated.
    In 2019 the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation released the names of 2,800 children who died at residential schools with another 1,600 children remaining unnamed.  At least 3,200 children died.  In May of 2021 the bodies of 215 children were found in a mass, unmarked grave at the site of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School.  The Truth and Reconciliation Centre had been told that only 50 deaths had occurred at the school.  Since then, more searches have taken place and additional graves have been uncovered.  The search continues.  The first official government apology came from Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2008.  Canadians needed to become better educated on what actually happened and September 30th is now recognized as a national holiday in order to hear more about indigenous history and to create a better legacy going forward.
    Wilbert Maracle was 9 years old when he attended the residential school in Brantford from 1943 to 1947.  He was excited to go to the big school with his brother, but when he woke up the next morning, his mom was gone and they had to stay.  He cried for 3 months.  The curriculum was simple -- reading, writing and arithmetic.  He had one teacher he really liked, who was kind to the children.  Because Wilbert had experience milking cows he was put in charge of 60 cows, taking them to pasture and milking them, making two trips a day.  There was bullying and abuse directed to him by his peers, older boys.  The food was very basic, they had to line up.  On July 7, 1947 Wilbert was released from the residential school at the age of 13.  He had no proper education so was put in Grade 2 which he challenged.  He has worked hard all his life even with his limited education and became a welder. 
    The challenge issued by Chief Maracle is for everyone to respect the cultural identity of all people regardless of the colour of their skin.  We have to do better going forward for today and tomorrow.  We must all reflect on the tragic and painful history and ongoing impacts of these schools and work towards reconciliation. We cannot change the legacy, but we can write a different legacy for the future.  Chief Maracle and Wilbert Maracle were thanked by Birgit Wartenberg, Chair of the Indigenous People Partnership.  It was an honour to have both speak today, this third National Day of Truth and Reconciliation.
    National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Chief Donald Maracle 2021-09-30 04:00:00Z 0

    Richard Tie Retirement

    Richard Tie has advised the Rotary Board that due to ill health, he is resigning from the Rotary Club of Belleville, a decision he deeply regrets as he considers it an honour and privilege to have been a Rotarian for over 37 years.  He wishes the Club continued good work in the community and around the world and would be pleased to hear from his fellow Rotarians as to what has been happening.  The Club has great memories with Dr. Richard Tie, leading lunch meeting sing-songs, with much gusto and enthusiasm.  Richard was very involved with the Quinte Rotary Music Festival over the years and the committee has grown as a result of his expertise and enthusiasm.  He also spent many work weekends at Camp Merrywood, a sweat equity project supported by many Rotarians, family and friends.  We wish the best to Richard and his wife Joanne.  The Club recognizes how proud a Rotarian Richard was and thank him sincerely for all his work over the years.  His contributions were valuable and appreciated by many.
    Richard Tie Retirement 2021-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Hero Awards and Attendance Presentations

    The September 16, 2021 Rotary meeting was held at the Lions Pavilion, West Zwick's Park at 5:00 p.m.  A lovely evening under the protection of the pavilion with social distancing and COVID protocols in place.  President Darrell Smith took the opportunity to recognize a number of Rotarians for their work in the community as well as formally welcoming new Rotarians and giving out perfect attendance pins and Paul Harris Fellow recognition.
    Back in August 2020, then District Governor Mark Chipman identified some Super Heroes in our community, two of whom happen to be Rotarians.  DG Chipman named Cory MacKay, Susan Finkle and Chris Finkle as officially declared Rotary Heroes for their commitment, dedication and spirit to uphold the ideals of doing good in the world.  During 2020, Chris and Susan Finkle started a community project to make protective equipment for front line workers in the form of face shields.  Between 5,000 and 6,000 face shields were supplied free to long term care facilities in the community through their efforts and that of their team members.  Around the same time, Cory MacKay converted her home into a mask making endeavour, working along with a group of friends and volunteers.  This initiative was a fundraiser for Rotary with donations welcome at $10 per mask.  The money donated went towards COVID-19 costs.  A number of designs were developed as well as children's masks, all approved by Quinte Healthcare.  Official Super Hero Award certificates were distributed to Cory, Susan and Chris. (pictured is Cory MacKay accepting her Super Hero Award from President Darrell).
    The Rotary Club of Belleville, once again, formally welcomed some new members to the Club.  Kim Henry, Janeen Halliwell, Paul Fleming, Stephan Brault, Vicki Smith and Peter Coy joined the Club late in 2020 and earlier this year, all sponsored by Rotarians and already contributing time and effort to Rotary initiatives.  Welcome aboard! (pictured are Janeen Halliwell and Paul Fleming, both sponsored by Kristin Crowe).
    Rotarians who achieved 100% perfect attendance in the 2020/2021 Rotary Year were also recognized -- Karen Baker, Tim McKinney, Carol-Lynn Michaud, Jeanette Minaker, Randy Coker, Bob Ord, Kim Henry, Rosie Ouellette, Nadine Langlois, Margaret Seu, Tracy Bray, Bill MacKay, Cory MacKay, Darrell Smith, Brenda Snider, Peter Malone, Dianne Spencer, Ruth Mathieson, Michael Summers, Sharon McConnell and Jo-Anne Wheeler.  A great group of Rotarians, all committed to Rotary.
    Paul Harris Fellow awards are given to Rotarians who have contributed $1,000 during the year towards the Rotary Foundation.  Adrian Hilmi, Darrell Smith and Michael Summers were recognized for their contributions to the Rotary Foundation over the past year. (pictured are Darrell Smith and Michael Summers).
    There were other awards warranted, but recipients were not in attendance and President Darrell Smith will present to those Rotarians in the days ahead with appropriate mention in the Rotary newsletters to follow.
    Rotary Hero Awards and Attendance Presentations 2021-09-16 04:00:00Z 0

    VIQ Presentation - 211 Services in Ontario

    Tracey Legault-Davis is the Manager of Community Programs & Communications, working alongside Rotarian Brenda Snider at VIQ on providing 211 Services in Ontario to this community.  Many people know when to call 411 (directory assistance), 911 (emergency services) and 711 (message relay for telephone devices for the Deaf).  But there are others -- 211 (public information and referral services), 311 (non-emergency municipal government services), 511 (weather and traveler information), 611 (telephone company) and 811 (non-urgent health care telephone triage services).  Tracey will speak about 211 that provides free information and referral to the most comprehensive database of community, social, health and related government services in Ontario and is the first point of access to human service resources throughout the province.  The service is now available coast to coast in Canada.  When you dial 211, you are speaking with a person, not an automated message and you receive targeted, live, confidential help.  Certified Information and Referral Specialists handle your call, all professionally accredited.  The service is capable of serving in more than 150 languages with around the clock access (24/7/365).  All 211 centres must meet the quality assurance standards of the Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS).
    The federal government invested more money into the 211 service to ensure people find support during COVID-19.  Help is available by calling 211 or by chatting with professionals online at www.211ontario.ca or by searching their online listing of programs, services and financial supports that are available and how to reach those resources.  The person answering the call will provide information and assistance and will refer the caller to the local agency in order to resolve the problem or inquiry and ensure the caller understands next step(s).  The service will conduct follow-up with callers and care coordinators to ensure support has been provided as needed.  For the first six months of 2021 there were 184,059 needs identified through 211 Ontario of which 26.61% were health related, 7.34% were related to mental health and addictions, 7.99% were about housing and 14.09% were for information services.
    Volunteer Information Quinte, supported through United Way is the conduit for 211 that provides services to the public over the phone, consisting of an online directory of more than 60,000 services.  It is the answer for people to find programs and services in the community.  Through additional funding, VIQ updated their laptops and website and now are able to get the most out of their interactive database. and review stats quarterly.  This service is a valuable tool to employers to share with their staff and to educate them on its use and benefits.  It is very important to raise awareness and tell everyone about this service.
    Tracey was thanked by Michael Summers who provides technical expertise as well as being a Board Member of VIQ.
    VIQ Presentation - 211 Services in Ontario Tracey Legault-Davis 2021-09-16 04:00:00Z 0

    RLK Wrap-Up

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    Dave Allen, Chair of Rotary Loves Kids golf tournament was very pleased to share final results of this major fundraising event.  Giving full credit to the committee members and the volunteers and the 177 golfers, Dave was pleased to announce that $90,000 was raised!  A phenomenal success by a very hard-working committee.  A great event amidst the challenges of COVID.  The date for 2022 has been set -- July 22, 2022.  Next year's co-chairs will be Dave Allen and Cassandra Bonn who is this year's recipient of the Anne Leverton Award.  This award was created a number of years ago to recognize a Rotarian who shows exemplary leadership and efforts during RLK.  Anne was a long-time Rotarian who fully embraced the ideals of Rotary and was a fierce supporter of RLK.  When we think of Anne, we think of fellowship, loyalty, volunteerism, community and especially Service Above Self.  Past recipients of the award include Bernie Ouellet, Jamie Trudeau, Dan Dickinson, Connie Reid, Greg Knudsen, Kelly McKinney, Sam Brady, Pat Feasey and now Cassandra Bonn.  Congratulations Cassandra, a well deserved recognition for all your work on RLK.  Cassandra was honoured to receive this award and appreciated everyone's support of the overall event.  They are already working on next year's event that promises to be bigger and better.  Cassandra thanked Dave Allen for his leadership.  President Darrell Smith thanked everyone for all their work in making this an incredible event with great results.
    RLK Wrap-Up David Allen 2021-09-02 04:00:00Z 0

    Shelter Box Canada

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    Shelter Box is a project partner with Rotary International, a global community of 1.2 million neighbours, friends and community leaders.  By working together with Rotary, Shelter Box is able to collaborate and combine resources to ensure that more communities in desperate need of shelter can be supported.  At any given time Shelter Box Response Teams are on the ground, supporting families to recover after disaster and conflict all over the world.  Rotary is with them every step of the way.  The partnership has provided a place of refuge to people facing some of the most difficult and uncertain moments in their lives.
    Rotarian Dr. Ruth Mathieson introduced Stephanie Christensen, Executive Director with Shelter Box Canada where she has been working for eight (8) years dealing with humanitarian needs and reaching the most remote communities around the world.  Shelter Box provides emergency shelters to families who have lost their homes to disaster or conflict.  The most vulnerable families around the world are helped by Shelter Box and Rotary International.  Since 2000, Shelter Box has provided aid to over two million people in 98 countries.
    Recovery starts with shelter, having a private place for your family to be together and call home.  Shelter Box provides privacy and security.  When families don't have to worry about where they will sleep, they can begin the process of self-recovery.  Shelter Box provides shelter, tools and household items like solar lights, water filters and cooking sets.  In the last five years, shelter provision has been consistently underfunded and Shelter Box is doing everything they can to ensure that no family is left without shelter and tools to survive.
    Family tents are supplied.  They are large enough for a family, sturdy and can withstand extreme weather conditions and temperatures.  They are fire retardant and come with a winter liner if required.  The tool kits contain a selection of materials, including ropes, heavy-duty tarpaulins to make emergency shelters or in some instances, corrugated iron to help make resilient roofing.  The kits can include mosquito nets if applicable, blankets, first aid kits.  Shelter Box works with the community, the community leaders and Rotary Clubs to take advantage of local sources of procurement.  Steps are taken to ensure the shelter tents are robust and items such as water filters can last long term.  The August 14th earthquake in Haiti resulted in 137,000 homes being damaged or destroyed with 1.2 million people requiring assistance.  Recovery will take time and is challenged with road conditions and gang conflicts.  Shelter Box is positioned to get to hard to reach communities, often those overlooked by others.  What sets Shelter Box apart from other organizations?
    • They put families first, using a flexible approach to understand what is most needed to support the family's recovery
    • They specialize in emergency shelter and the essential tools needed to help rebuild homes
    • They go to hard-to-reach communities
    • They have a global network of supporters raising vital funds to help with their mission.
    Pictured is a young mother with a baby who lost everything following a 2015 cyclone in Fiji.  Everything was gone, no food, no home.  With the safety and security of a Shelter Box tent, this young mother was provided with shelter when she had nothing.  Shelter Box and Rotary is making this possible.
    Stephanie Christensen thanked the Rotary Club of Belleville for on-going financial support and mentioned the Shelter Box Hero Program where Rotary Clubs can be recognized for their contributions as a Club.  The cost of a full Shelter Box unit is $1,200 Canadian.  Anyone wishing to make a personal donation, can visit Shelter Box website where there is a spot to indicate the Rotary Club source.  Tax receipts will be issued.
    Shelter Box Canada Stephanie Christensen 2021-09-02 04:00:00Z 0

    Guatemala Literacy Program

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    Rotarian Ruth Mathieson was very pleased to introduce Colin Thacker to the Rotary Club of Belleville.  Colin is a past president of the Rotary Club of North Bay and chair of the Rotary District 7010 Leadership Learning Institute.  Now retired, Colin worked for 33 years as a certified manager of volunteer resources and has written six books on the subject of volunteering.  In 1999, he was presented with the Linda Buchanan award by Professional Administrators of Volunteer Resources in Ontario for his outstanding contributions in the volunteer administration field.  The Rotary Club of Belleville has supported the Global Grant for the Guatemalan Literacy project, Colin Thacker being the Canadian Arm of this project.  He is guest speaker today to talk about this ambitious Global Grant.
    The Guatemala Literacy Program (GLP) is a network of individual Rotarians, Rotary clubs and districts, and the nonprofit organization Cooperative for Education (CoEd) with a common interest in improving education for underserved students in Guatemala. Guatemala is an island of illiteracy in Central America.  Eighty (80%) percent of the people live in poverty, one-third cannot read or write.  There is a lack of opportunity in this country and many walk/travel to the United States for a job.  If we can help these people get educated, they can obtain a middle income job in Guatemala.
    Colin's passion for this project came from his own education challenges during high school.  He went on to achieve a honours degree in political science from Laurentian University, a diploma in human resource management from Canadore College, a masters degree in education from Nipissing University and an advance certificate in volunteer management from Washington State University.  Colin's vision is for all children to have an opportunity for education.  Almost a decade ago, Colin saw poverty first hand.  He saw children who wanted to continue their education, but couldn't.  They were pulled out of school to help farm by grade six.  Homes had dirt floors.  Whole families would survive in an 8' x 11' space.  He now works tirelessly on the Guatemala Literacy Project.  Computers and textbooks valued at almost a million dollars have been sent to the effort.  Todate, there has been a total of 207 textbook projects, 53 computer centres created, 94 reading programs put in place and a total of 741 scholarship and sponsorship projects that benefit the impoverished youth.  The Guatemala Literacy Project (GLP) is one of the largest grassroots, multi-club, multi-district projects in Rotary. More than 600 clubs and 80 districts have been working together since 1997 to improve education for underserved students in Guatemala. In that time, nearly 225,500 students have been served through four sustainable programs that are tested and proven to work. In 2017, then-RI President Ian Riseley called the GLP “the gold standard of Rotary projects” for its sustainability and impact.
    Colin's current focus is on the RISE program, a program developed to bridge the gap in education.  For $100 a month, individuals or Rotary Clubs can sponsor a RISE  scholar to remain in school, graduate Grade 12 and provide an opportunity for a better education, career and life.  RISE is part of the GLP and this year, Rotary Clubs and individuals are rallying to sponsor over 300 Rise Program scholars who will not be able to stay in school next year without this financial support.  Rotarian Terry Thomas thanked Colin for bringing this project to our attention.  Terry has had a first hand experience working in Guatemala and heard good things about the Guatamela Literacy Project.
    Guatemala Literacy Program Colin Thacker 2021-08-19 04:00:00Z 0

    Belleville Rotarian Recognized with International Award

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    The Service Above Self Award is considered Rotary International’s highest honor to bestow on a Rotarian. The purpose of this award is to recognize those individual Rotarians who have demonstrated exemplary humanitarian service, in any form and at any level, with emphasis on personal volunteer efforts and active involvement in helping others through Rotary.
    Belleville Rotarian Recognized with International Award 2021-03-19 04:00:00Z 0

    Mayor Mitch Panciuk Presentation to the Club

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    Vice President Cory MacKay, introduced our guest speaker Mayor Mitch Panciuk.  Mayor Panciuk was elected Mayor in the fall of 2018.  Mitch who moved to Belleville in 2001 is the owner of Boston Pizza Belleville and served as Councillor in 2014 and Mayor in 2018. 
    Mayor Mitch Panciuk Presentation to the Club Darrell Smith 2021-01-07 05:00:00Z 0
    Rotary Club of Belleville Provides Meals to Belleville and Area  Bill MacKay 2020-12-15 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Provides Some Much-Needed Help

    Over 25,000 Meals Provided to Those in Need

    Belleville— December 11, 2020 Yesterday at the Rotary Club of Belleville’s Annual General Meeting, member’s learned that this year’s Kid’s Against Hunger partnership has successfully raised enough funds to provide for 25,588 meals. “We are pleased with the efforts of our partners and Rotarians to make this happen given our COVID-19 challenges,” said Cory MacKay, Vice President of the Rotary Club of Belleville and Co-Chair of the Kid’s Against Hunger Committee.

    Positive Community Impact – Locally and Internationally

    Many people locally will benefit from this effort as over 14,472 meals will be delivered to Gleaners Food Bank Belleville and their community partners, Bridge Street United Church as well as various Quinte United Way Agencies. The balance of the meals will be shipped to Haiti to assist with on-going health and humanitarian needs. With classrooms closed, some 300,000 children are missing daily school meals, putting them at risk of stunted growth, according to the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
    Kid’s Against Hunger Canada, a registered Canadian humanitarian charity, is committed to engage Canadians, especially youth, in helping to feed those who are hungry, malnourished and starving in Canada and around the world.
    “It is gratifying to know that our members were willing to take a leadership role,” said Cory MacKay, “We were also pleased with the response of our partners and the willingness to provide us with solutions.”
    Rotary Club of Belleville Past President Kelly and Deb McKinney, Judy and Club President Tim McKinney were pleased to make this year’s Kid’s Against Hunger contribution to Committee Co-Chair and Club Vice President, Cory MacKay.
    Rotary Provides Some Much-Needed Help  William MacKay 2020-12-11 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Christmas Dinner

    On Dec.16 , 2019 the Rotary Club held its annual Christmas party at the Ramada Hotel . President Doug Peterson spoke at the beginning of the meal and said there would no meeting but just dinner.  Reverend Hal Wilson offered grace.  The elevators were broken so Rudy and others had to use the freight elevator, however, the extra effort was worth it because  the Ramada put on a delicious turkey dinner.
    For entertainment, the Hasting and Prince Edward Regional Chorus rounded out a perfect evening.  Fifteen students dressed in Canadian tartan were led by conductor Jennifer Curtis and accompaniest  Claudia Scott. The carolers sang Silent Night in original German and then a variation of Silent Night in English . One carol was sung in Swedish and a Sanish tune was sung with a recorder and bongos.  One young man named Malcolm Ross has been singing with the choir for 8 years and this was his last year.
    The choir is looking for new members.  If you know anyone who might be interested please contact Jennifer Curtis at hperc.ca     .
    Rotary Christmas Dinner Alan Kelly 2019-12-16 05:00:00Z 0

    Quinte Conservation

    Posted on Jun 10, 2019
    Vince Lynch introduced Christine Phillibert P.Engineering . Vince mentioned he was the former water management engineer and quoted from the Gordon Lightfoot song "The Fate of the Edmund Fitzgerald ." Lynch mentioned he and Christine were both graduates of Queen's University .
    Christine Philliibert works for Quinte Conservation as a Water Resources Manager and did a slide presentation that explained Quinte Conservation's role . She eloquently explained what influences Lake Ontario/Bay of Quinte water levels and the causes of the 2017 and the 2019 floods . She also explained current and forecast conditions and protection of property.
    Quinte Conservation's role is to provide flood warning and warning-(reducing risk of life and property ) for its watersheds; the Moira, Salmon, Napanee and all of Prince Edward County.  The regulation prevention program around hazards prevent people and property from being within the flood and erosion hazard.  Christine's job is to monitor how high  the water will get, when that will happen and inform the municipalities by mail list and social media. Also to operate and maintain flood management structures . Christine explained the Lake Ontario Watershed.  There is a  dam at the outlet of Lake Superior but water is uncontrolled from  Lake Michigan, Lake Huron and Lake Erie.  All flow to Lake Ontario Plan 2014 balances upstream and downstream impacts (flood,shipping, ecology).  The Ottawa River flows into and influences the lower St . Lawrence River.  The Ottawa watershed has the Moses-Saunders Dam. Causes of the 2017 flood -- January, February, and March there was unstable ice cover in the late winter, five (5) freeze thaw cycles that necessitated reducing outflow to reduce risk of ice jamming.  In addition there were record setting rainfall totals for the first 5 months of the year. The Moses-Saunders Dam couldn't allow too much water to flow or there would have been ice jams. The 2019 flood was from above average rainfall in the late winter, record Ottawa River flooding , flooding on the St. Lawrence River and record Lake Erie uncontrolled outflows.  What flows over Niagara Falls is completely uncontrolled.  Christine explained the water level will stabilize and slowly decline . A reduction of 1 cm of water level in Lake Ontario in one week will cause a rise of 12 cm on the St Lawrence River .
    The impact of the flooding is on parklands, trails, roads, residential and commercial lots, basements, boat launches, storm sewers and wastewater effluent pipes.  Flooding causes erosion to private property,  escarpments, road damage, shorelines and breakwater damage.  Quinte Conservation regulation staff provide on site advice on how you can protect your property from flooding and erosion . There is more information on the" Resources" page at Quinte Conservation.com for those who are interested .
    Ken Wheeler thanked Christine for her presentation which he  described as extremely interesting and extremely relevant since it affects the daily lives of everyone in the room  .
    Quinte Conservation Christine Phillibert 2019-06-10 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Christmas Dinner

    The Travelodge was the host site of our annual Rotary Christmas Dinner attended by almost 100 Rotarians, partners and spouses of Rotarians.  President Andrew though an official club meeting advised there was little formality to the night and encouraged those in attendance to enjoy the fellowship and spirit of the season.  President Andrew opened the dinner with a seasonal Rotary prayer.
    A festive Christmas dinner was prepared and served to the attendees and enjoyed by all.

    John and Wanda Chisholm at the conclusion of dinner led those in attendance in a carole sing of Christmas favourites, and a prelude to the annual tradition of the Children's Choir treating to us a selection of Christmas caroles and hymns.  Before the choir began, long time Rotarian and Choir Director Rudy Heidjens who has retired as main conductor of the Children's Choir and now works only with the Training Choir advised this is the first Rotary Christmas dinner he has actually been able to eat and he enjoyed that. The choir now under the direction of Rudy's long time assistant and also a previous choir member herself performed a number of Christmas songs for our enjoyment and the group accompanied the Choir in singing Silent Night after the Choir sang the first verse in German.  
    Again a very enjoyable way for Rotarians and their guests to enjoy fellowship and the spirit of the season and a great time was had by all.
    Rotary Christmas Dinner 2018-12-10 05:00:00Z 0


    President Andrew Bandler called the 2017/2018 AGM to order.  Moved by Andrew Bandler, seconded by Shannon Neely that the agenda of the 2017/2018 AGM be approved as circulated.  
    President Andrew called Treasurer Darrell Smith to present the 2017/18 Audited Financial Statements and Darrell called our Auditor Michael McMurray from Welch LLP who presented the 2017/2018 Financial Statements to the club.  Michael advised that 2017/18 figures showed a consistency versus 2016/2017 operating revenues and expenses with a slight improvement year over year of an increase in the operating account surplus of approximately $5,000 versus 2016/2017 audited results.
    Michael then reported on the Service account for the 17/18 Rotary year and noted a deficit of $47,811 of service revenues versus expenditures and this indicated an improvement of results versus budgeted service account deficit and an improvement versus the 16/17 Rotary year of approximately $12,000 when a $59,747 deficit was realized in the service account.
    MIchael talked about the audited statements and the first page of the audited financial statements represents the auditors' opinion which is the statements represent fairly the receipts and disbursements of the Rotary Club of Belleville during the 2017/2018 Rotary year.
    Darrell thanked MIchael for his presentation and fielded questions from the membership about the financial statements including a discussion around the deficit in the Service account and was in actuality not as bad as indicated as included the Capital Grants committee and support of community projects of $40,000 which was funded from our long term investment assets and did not have a corresponding revenue inclusion. Questions were asked about the support of the Rotary Music Festival Committee and advised in consultation with the executive of the Music Committee with the significant bank account balances that they were privy to that they could continue for this year without a cash influx and still undertake their desired programming objectives.  With no further questions, Darrell moved the acceptance of the 2017/2018 audited financial statements, seconded by  Sam Brady and then approved by the membership in attendance.
    Darrell then moved that Welch LLP be appointed as auditors for the 2018/2019 Rotary year, seconded by  Sam Brady and voted on and approved by the membership in attendance.
    President Andrew thanked Darrell for the presentation of the financial statements and called on Past President Tracy Bray to provide her report to the club of her year as Rotary Club of Belleville President.  One of the highlights for Tracy was the large group of Belleville Rotarians who attended the International Convention in Toronto and hosting of 12 Rotarians from around the world at the Royal Yacht Club in Toronto.  Tracy talked about the Community Paul Harris where 3 new community members were awarded Paul Harris Fellowships for their community engagement.  Other highlights for Tracy were a very successful RLK that raised $100,000 and very positive results for other fundraising efforts for the Rotary Aids Walk raising $37,000, Diners and Duffers netting just under $10,000.  Tracy talked about the 50th Anniversary of the Rotary Music Festival and the Festival of Stars at Albert College recognizing the efforts of a number of the participants.  The Music Festival had over 200 participants in a number of categories. Tracy talked about classification talks that occurred during her year and also an initiative to have speakers who reflected our outreach efforts both locally and internationally which provided the club a first hand understanding of the impact of our support on the lives of others.
    Tracy closed her presentation thanking all Rotarians for their efforts and moved the acceptance of her report, seconded by John Smale and voted on and approved by the membership in attendance.
    Tracy then undertook her last role as President was to introduce the 2019/2020 Board for the Rotary Club of Belleville. Before she introduced the 2019/2020 Board, she thanked retiring Directors Adam Zegouras and Drew Brown for their efforts and commitments to the Rotary Club during their long tenures
    Past President Andrew Bandler
    President: Doug Peterson
    President;Elect; Tim McKinney
    Vice President: To be determined by Board at a subsequent meeting
    Secretary: Brenda Snider
    Treasurer: Darrell Smith
    Board of Directors
    Karen Baker
    Collin Myers
    Cory MacKay
    Jeanette Minaker
    Randy Coker
    Ashley Rushnell: New Board Member
    Peter Malone: New Board Member
    John Smale: New Board Member
    Tracy asked for a motion to accept the slate of directors the 19/20 Rotary year, moved by Kelly McKinney, seconded by Len Kennedy, and voted on and approved.
    President Andrew then moved to adjourn the AGM, seconded by Bruce Flynn and approved.
    2017/2018 ROTARY CLUB OF BELLEVILLE AGM 2018-12-03 05:00:00Z 0

    PACT - David Lockett

    Posted on Aug 20, 2018
    Ken Dickson introduced the guest speaker, David Lockett, and reminded us that this program, started 8-9 years ago, places at-risk youth in a one - on - one mentoring, coaching program, which makes positive changes in their lives, and helps them to become successful adults.
    Eight or nine years ago, David got a call from the John Howard Society, informing him that there was a need for a mentoring program for at risk youth in Belleville. Thirty - three youth have gone through the PACT program. Success factors include:  rate of re-offences (66% of participants do not re-offend); participation in meetings; articulation of and follow up in goal setting.  
    The age of participants is between 13 and 17 years. The PACT program has been proven to change families for the better, and alter individual lives. The cost of running the program is between $35,000 and $40,000 per year (the cost of incarceration is over $100,000 per year). The Federal government removed funding , so efforts were made to get funding from other sources, because of the proven success of the program. Rotary and other service clubs stepped up to the plate and have been contributing regularly to the program. 
    Last year, Belleville had 3 young people in the program. Next year, six are expected to be enrolled. Life coaches  see 40 -50 kids over a life career span. It takes a long time to create the problems, and it takes a long time to overcome the issues which created them in the first place. Long - term coaching and mentoring is needed. Candidates are recommended by judges, lawyers, and parole officers.  If kids are successful in this program, their record can be expunged before they  get a permanent record on file as an adult. They get a fresh start, with mentoring. 
    "Aftercare":  The life coach makes regular visits to the clients and creates "personal capacity" standards, and deals with problem issues. Most participants do not offend again. They learn important life skills, and are guided to education programs and skills training possibilities.
    Les (an offender who had lived in 21 foster homes from the age of 6) - convicted on home invasion charges, entered the PACT program, an intervention which resulted in his becoming the owner of his own landscaping business. 
    How can we help? Liz (Wellington Rotary Club) gave an example of Travis.  With PACT assistance, Travis has graduated high school and has a job. Local Rotarians are staying connected with Travis and see him regularly, for family dinners and Rotary outings. PACT is a manageable activity for service clubs . 
    Belleville had a 90% success rate last year in its PACT efforts.  Early intervention CAN make a big difference.  Gender  differences - 85% of offenders are male. 
    Adam Zegouras thanked David and PACT on behalf of the Club and the Crown Attorney's office, for making a difference.  (L to R:  Adam Zegouras, David Lockett, Ken Dickson and Andrew Bandler).
    PACT - David Lockett Judy McKnight 2018-08-20 04:00:00Z 0

    My Year as President

    Rotarian Connie Reid introduced our Guest Speaker and retiring President Tracy Bray for her final meeting of the year.  While certainly not requiring any introduction of who Tracy is to the club to the benefit of guests in attendance, Connie provided a bio of Tracy discussing in great detail who Tracy was and highlighting her dedication to both the Rotary Club of Belleville both in her year as President but during her entire tenure as a Rotarian in Belleville. But Tracy's community engagement is not limited to solely Rotary and Connie talked about Tracy's support of various charities in the community and also her involvement with her daughter Annissa's activities including skiing and soccer.  During the past year Tracy has focused on all these things along with coordinating and organizing a 50th anniversary party for her parents.  Connie said that Tracy has shown us what it means to be a Rotarian through all of her actions as a Rotarian.  Connie then formally welcomed President Tracy to the podium to provide her review of her year as Rotary Club of Belleville President.
    President Tracy's review of her year as President was augmented by a visual review of pictures taken of events throughout her year as President.
    President Tracy first started her discussion with an introduction of her assistant from her business Sarah Steenburgh and talked about how important Sarah had been in helping her manage her year as President. Sarah reiterated Tracy's commitment to the Rotary Club of Belleville during her year as President and while she is happy to see the end of year, that she is sure Tracy will miss her role as President.  Tracy thanked Sarah for all of her efforts during the past year by presenting her with a Rotary Toronto Convention ball cap.  Tracy thanked Connie and Jeanette Minaker for their leadership in leading Fellowship and Programming during the past 12 months.  Tracy said her year had passed very fast but was drawing to a close with tremendous excitement as the Toronto Convention nears and discussed her excitement for the number of club members who were attending the Toronto Convention and our hosting of a dinner for club members and Rotarians from all over the world.  Tracy thanked Rotarian Kevin Bazkur for his leadership in coordinating our dinner at Toronto Convention at the Royal Toronto Yacht Club.  Tracy talked about some of our Monday meetings including 4 classification talks with Kevin, Tim, Jennifer and Ashley completing classification talks during her year as President. She talked about the presentations by City of Belleville Mayor Taso Christopher and his vision for the future development of the city and MP Neil Ellis talking about the legalization of marijuana being undertaken by the Federal Government.  Tracy talked about the importance of having speakers from programs that have been funded by the club as opposed to speakers asking for funds allowing club members to see first hand the impact of our support to both our local and the global community.
    Tracy talked about other meeting highlights such as our Community Paul Harris night, 2 AGMs talking about the past of our club and future of our club through review of previous year's audited statements and the recent AGM with the 18/19 budget presentation. She talked about our joint meeting with the Satellite club and one of her personal favourite events which is the Special Needs Children Christmas party and the participation of so many Rotarians seeing the smiles on the children and their families who were in attendance. She thanked Tim McKinney for the leadership of the Satellite club and the enthusiasm that they bring to our club.  Tracy thanked those in attendance for their support during her year as President and to those who attended the President's night dinner and reiterated many of the thanks to her board members for their dedication to the club and their support and to all members.
    Tracy closed her presentation with an online Ted Talk she had seen via You Tube and the things that had the most impact on people living longer and while things like quitting smoking, getting exercise helped but not as much as getting a flu shot but the things that were the most predictive of a long life would surprise you and that the 2 most influential predictive elements of a long life were how many close personal relationships you have with people who will be there when you need them and the amount of social integration and face to face interactions you have, the more you have the longer you live. This is what Rotary provides us through our weekly meetings and by being involved in our community both locally and internationally.
    Tracy thanked everyone for their support and called up President Elect Andrew Bandler to present him with the President's Pin.  Andrew talked about Tracy's commitment to the club and his decision to award her the first Rotary Warrior pin at the President's Night Dinner for her incredible dedication to the club both as President but since she became a Rotarian.  He feels he takes over the club as President at a great time in our history and defined the club as a very good car that had just been detailed.  PE Andrew provided Tracy with her Past President's pin.
    Rotarian Jeanette Minaker thanked Tracy for her presentation and for her dedication to the Rotary Club of Belleville  and that she truly embodies the Rotary 4 Way Test.
    My Year as President Darrell Smith 2018-06-18 04:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Club of Belleville Budget 18/19

    President Elect Andrew Bandler introduced current Secretary and Vice President Doug Peterson who presented the 2018/2019 Rotary Club of Belleville budget. Doug advised he could  give us a very succinct and time sensitive presentation which would say basically we were in good shape it was a balanced budget and that would be it. But assuming most of us would prefer more detail, Doug provided the long form version of the budget presentation. 
    Doug spoke to the fact that through a number of meetings that began in April and with input from a number of budget committee members from the Board, Committee chairs from both spending and revenue generating committees two meetings were held in late April and the budget determined. Doug explained that we would be once again using the X-1 formula where what was raised during 17/18  Rotary year is what would be spent in the Service budget in 2018/2019.  The budget process involves a line by line review of all expenditures and revenues for both operations and service.  Operations reflects the core costs of running the club on a yearly basis and revenues generated through dues and the like.  Service revenues and expenditures reflect the funds that are raised and distributed into the wider community.  
    Doug explained the rationale around the use of X-1 budget process which was developed during Sam Brady's tenure on the budget committee and insured prudence and discipline in spending.  However with very conservative assumptions it facilitated a growth in the bank balances in the Service account. So in 2015 the Board determined to increase expenditures in the Service account and fund those from the surpluses and this process continued for 2 Rotary years and also included a transfer of funds to our long term investment committee. However the budget committee and the board determined in 2017/18 Rotary year that we would return to an X-1 budget process and would see reduction in spending to reflect reduction in fundraising revenues realized in the previous year. While 17/18 reflected challenges for all Service committees, a strong 17/18 fundraising year has seen an increase in spending allowed for many of the Service committees.
    Doug thanked the members of the budget committee for their dedication to the process and the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    The 18/19 budget committee objectives were to include the continuation of the X-1 methodology and strike an appropriate balance between fundraising and spending.
    Doug then presented a number of historical references for previous years budgets and this years budgets.  A full depiction of the budget will be available through Club Runner.
    Operations Budget
    • 2016/2017 Revenue $107,220, Expenses $107,220
    • 2017/2018 Revenue $97,575, Expenses $95,450
    • 2018/2019 Revenue $113,400, Expenses $113,150
    The increase in revenues and expenses reflect increases in membership dues and meals.
    Service Budget
    • 2016/2017 Revenue $237,900, Expenses $229,100
    • 2017/2018 Revenue $184,223, Expenses $235,025
    • 2018/2019 Revenue $206,638, Expenses $206,180
    Doug also presented a current state of the club which indicated as of end of May approximately $109,000 in bank account balances and approximately $527,301 in investments through CIBC Wood Gundy.
    The takeaways Doug wanted to leave the membership with was that the budget was a balanced budget without sacrificing service support and also without sacrificing the long term ability to provide funding for future Rotary years and projects through erosion of long term assets.  A number of questions were directed from the membership and answered by Doug, Andrew and Darrell treasurer.
    Sam Brady moved the acceptance of the 2018/19 Rotary budget and seconded by Adrian Hilmi and approved unanimously. 
    Board Member and incoming Secretary Brenda Snider thanked Doug for the presentation and the value of being part of the budget committee team and the insight that provides to the workings of the club.
    Rotary Club of Belleville Budget 18/19 2018-06-11 04:00:00Z 0
    National Air Force Museum of Canada 2018-02-09 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Family Christmas Party

    The annual Rotary Christmas Family lunch was a brunch held this year on Sunday the 17th of December to accommodate families with children who would be in school still till the 22nd of December and would miss our annual Christmas Family lunch.  A number of Rotarians, Rotarian partners and Rotarians in training (their children, grandchildren) joined for Christmas Brunch on the 17th of December at the Travelodge.  Guest entertainer Andy Forgie provided a number of seasonal favourites and a special Big Guy made a visit to the delight to the children in attendance. While a small crowd as compared to our normal meetings, the effort to try to provide a Christmas social event for Rotarians and their families was appreciated by those in attendance.
    Rotary Family Christmas Party 2017-12-17 05:00:00Z 0

    2016/2017 Rotary AGM

    This week as a club we held our AGM for the recently completed 2016/2017 Rotary year under the stewardship of President Shannon Neely. Before the AGM, Rotarian Richard Tie led us in a festive rendition of Jingle Bells.  President Tracy Bray opened the AGM and moved the approval of the agenda, seconded by Kelly McKinney. Voted on and approved.
    President Tracy called Treasurer Darrell Smith to the podium and he introduced the club's auditor Michael McMurray of Welch and Company who presented the audited financial statements of the club for the recently completed Rotary year. He highlighted financial performance and full particulars are available on the Rotary website.  Michael reported that operating revenues were down from the previous year and totalled $95,000 and disbursements were down slightly at $109,810 and resulted in an operating account deficit for the year of $14,825 an increase over the previous year operating account deficit of $6,940.
    Michael reported that service club revenues decreased by $27,000 from previous year to $229,040 and club service expenditures decreased slightly to $288,787 but increased overall  service deficit to $59,747 from $34,616 in 16/17 Rotary year.  Michael did advise that a large part of the deficit could be depicted via Capital Spending committee which allocated $49,125 into the community in major capital expenditures which PP Shannon Neely would discuss in more detail in his report.
    Randy Coker asked Michael about the capital spending committee and Michael deferred to Shannon's presentation.
    Treasurer Darrell moved the approval of the 16/17 audited financial statements, seconded by Ian Acton and approved by members in attendance. Treasurer Darrell moved that Welch and Co LLP be approved as auditors for the 17/18 Rotary year, seconded by Karen Baker and approved by members in attendance.
    President Tracy called Past President Shannon Neely to the podium to present his annual report which is available on the Club website and is the formal completion of his duties as Rotary President.  A few highlights that PP Shannon drew to the club's attention included his attendance at the Seoul International Convention along with Rotarians Ruth Mathieson and Margaret Seu who made the very long, but exciting trip to the convention.  PP Shannon thanked the club for providing him the opportunity to attend.
    PP Shannon talked about the first successful full year of the Satellite Club including their fundraising efforts for minor hockey and the Children's  Treatment Centre at BGH, the playground project raising over $18,000 combined for the 2 projects. Rotarian Tim McKinney became the first satellite member to present his classification talk.  PP Shannon noted Len Kennedy's award as a Rotary Foundation Major Donor and the recognition received at his last meeting as President, when Past RI President Wilf Wilkinson presented Len with his award.  PP Shannon was pleased with the successful return to the Travelodge for the lunch meetings. Other highlights of PP Shannon's year he drew to the club's attention included Paul Harris Community awards and 4 new inductees, the money spent providing essential medical equipment and supports for special needs children in the community and the work of the Capital Grants committee which provided significant capital funds to support major initiatives at Habitat for Humanity for 2 home builds, $5,000 to Children's Safety Village, $5,000 to the Quinte Arts Council, $9,000 to the KGH NICU and $10,000 to the BGH Children's Playground Project. PP Shannon highlighted many more club accomplishments during the past Rotary year.  He moved the acceptance of his report,  seconded by Hugh Campbell and voted on and approved.
    PP  Shannon then discussed the decision to change the constitution to revise the process for election to the Board of Directors and that it was to seek out people who wanted to participate in the Board as opposed to those who wished to opt out.  A full  board slate was presented with the following people allowing their names to stand --Drew Brown, Jeannette  Minaker, Tim McKinney, Colin Myers, Randy Coker, Karen Baker, Cory McKay, Adam Zegouras. Brenda Snider has allowed her name to stand for a 2 year term as secretary.  Executive of the Club for the 18/19 Rotary Year are as follows --PP Tracy Bray, President Andrew Bandler, President-Elect Doug Peterson, Vice-president to be voted on by the Board,  Treasurer Darrell Smith, Secretary Brenda Snider. 
    PP Shannon moved the acceptance of the slate of Directors for 2018/19, seconded by Hal Wilson and approved by members in attendance.
    President Tracy Bray then moved for the adjournment of the  2016/2017 Rotary Club of Belleville AGM, seconded by Chris Finkle.
    2016/2017 Rotary AGM 2017-12-11 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Loves Kids Golf Tournament 2017

    Posted on Jul 28, 2017
    A stunning day on the golf course and Party In The Square on Friday, July 28th.  Thank you to everyone who supported this Rotary Club of Belleville fundraiser!
    Rotary Loves Kids Golf Tournament 2017 2017-07-28 04:00:00Z 0

    President Shannon Neely's Farewell Address

    Posted on Jun 26, 2017
    Kelly McKinney introduced President Shannon and said the two had many similarities like having girls names , four kids , beards and added some ribald humour , which you will have to ask fellow members who attended the meeting  about . He then  listed off Shannon's achievements for the pat year .
     President Shannon thanked his fellow Rotarians, honoured guests and past Rotary International President Wilf Wilkinson. Despite his personal, family and career challenges, he believes Rotary Belleville had a successful year.  He considers this organization a great place to be and is proud to refer to all of us as his Rotary family.  He said our number one competitor is "Time ".  Time away from families, businesses, hobbies and interests all with hopes of making our world, our country and our community a better place to live in now and the future.  The past year's Rotary International theme was "Rotary Serving Humanity ".  To do this we needed more bright minds and younger members and this was achieved with growth and success of the Satellite Club introduced by Past President Kelly . Shannon had training in Chicago and went to the Rotary International Convention in Seoul , South Korea.  As president, Shannon mentioned some of the things he was most proud of -- the return of the Christmas Dinner, the return of the meetings to the Travelodge, the formation of the Capital Spending Committee and the reformatted Rotary Poker Walk.  President Shannon pointed out that it was Fellowship Chair Paige Summers who deserves all the credit for organizing and planning of the successful Christmas dinner.  The Capital Spending Committee was formed by the Board after the Club voted to give out 10% of the accumulated funds from the Club's past fund raising efforts.  Community groups can apply to the Club for funding and so far we have given out $42,000 this year to a variety of community projects. The  Rotary Aids Walk was changed from an outside walk to a virtual format  and John Smale and his team raised $36,000  which is the highest amount yet for this fundraiser.  Finally , Shannon thanked the 2016/17 Board for their hard work, efforts and dedication this year . He went on to say we are an active club , we are financially stable and your future board and executive are dedicated to making sure that the rich history of the club stays current , productive and viable for future generations to come .
    President Elect Tracy Bray thanked Shannon for his year of leadership and presented him with his Past President pin.
    President Shannon Neely's Farewell Address  2017-06-26 04:00:00Z 0

    New Club By-Laws

    After the budget presentation for the 2017/18 Rotary year, President Shannon Neely called up Past President Kelly McKinney to discuss  and present revisions to the Rotary Club of Belleville By-Laws. Full depiction of the revisions to by-laws will be posted to the club website.
    PP Kelly spoke of a committee formed which included PP Bill MacKay Jr., President Shannon Neely, Secretary Doug Peterson and Past Presidents Kelly McKinney and Len Kennedy who met to review the by-laws  and initiate changes consistent with RI guidelines and also around changes to the election of board of directors.  
    The revisions were presented  and reviewed by Rotarians Anya-Deane Best and Bill King to meet legal requirements and were then presented to the board for their approval.
    Changes to the By-Laws included adding reference to the Satellite club consistent with RI guidelines.  PP Kelly also talked  about the revisions to the by-laws relating to the election of interested individuals to the Board of Directors.  This included the striking of a nominations committee who would seek out individuals interested in standing for election to the Board of Directors and would not include on that committee any members eligible to stand for election and would include members from the Club as a whole who were not seeking out election.  If sufficient interest existed for the positions available an election would be held during the first half of the Rotary year. 
    A motion to approve the revisions to  the  By-lLw was made by Len Kennedy and seconded by Cory MacKay.
    Discussion followed from the members in attendance with Sam Brady seeking clarification that Satellite Club members could stand for election to the Board of Directors and was advised that they could and for the 17/18 Rotary year, Tim McKinney of the Satellite Club has been nominated and approved to sit on the Rotary Board of  Directors.
    Tara Lyons asked if a Satellite member could be President and would they have to attend the regular Monday lunch meetings.  The members were advised they would have to attend and as part of the vetting process to become Club President, would have to understand that commitment.
    Karen Baker asked  about the removal of the list and how that process would work and Kelly spoke to the nominating committee seeking out members who would be interested in putting their names  forward for inclusion in the election.
    Dave Albert asked if there should  be representation from the Satellite Club on the budget committee and also a voting mechanism or presentation of the  budget process,  He was advised there was and Karen Baker also confirmed that incoming Treasurer Darrell Smith had presented  the essence of the budget to the Satellite Club at a meeting in May.
    Hugh Campbell asked about the attendance as it seems to be going down and is that an  issue that needs to be addressed.
    Seeing no more questions, the motion on the floor to approve the revisions to the Club By-Laws was voted on and approved unanimously.
    New Club By-Laws 2017-06-19 04:00:00Z 0

    My Year in Canada

    Posted by Selina Savijoki on Jun 12, 2017
    Past president Sam Brady introduced our guest speaker, Rotary Exchange Student Selina Savijoki.  Sam sang a musical tribute to Selina's year to the tune of "These Are A Few Of My Favourite Things" that brought her to happy tears.  Selina thanked her host families Tracy Bray, Barry and Linda Hillier,  Cory and Bill MacKay and finally, Sam and Anne-Marie Brady.  Selina said the last 10 months have been exciting and it was a leap into the unknown and she learned more about herself and has grown to be herself.  Her year started with a trip to New York where she met up with all the Finnish exchange students who were to be placed.  Her first night in Canada she had a dinner with Heather Menzies who starred in the Sound of Music.  She spent Thanksgiving at Bon Echo Provincial Park.  She went to the Rotary District Conference at the end of October.  She went to the Hilliers in November and they took her to Quebec City and Montreal for 5 days for Christmas, a wonderful experience with them and their friends.  New Year's was spent in London, Ontario where she had her first pot luck dinner and loved it. Selina also met Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and thought that was really cool, something about his colourful socks were mentioned.  She went to a winter Rotary Youth Student exchange weekend where she tried snowshoeing and skiing at Ganaraska. 
    Selina has spent most of her life very involved in the arts and being busy.  She took advantage of the art culture in Belleville with the Centennial musical program, singing at the Pinnacle Music Studio and dancing lessons at Irelands.  She also took in some musical theatre shows like The Sound of Music and The Book of Mormon as well as the Nutcracker.  She also went to New York with the Arts Program.  She went to Soho, China town, Central Park and attended a Mets game.  And most recently, went to the last Rotary Exchange weekend and met the outgoing students at Cobourg.  And last, but not least she went with Randy and Joanne Coker to Montreal with a Rotary Exchange Student from France.  All in all, Selina was fortunate to see so much of what Canada has to offer.  She reminisced about Canada and what impressed her.  She noticed that people are friendly in a different way, air conditioning everywhere, long car rides, expensive phone calls, and milk in bags, something she had never seen before.  Selina, with tears in her eyes said moving to Canada was the best decision she ever made and happy she moved out of her comfort zone to embrace everyone and everything. 
    Paige Summers thanked Selina for sharing all her photographs and her thoughts about Canada.  The Rotary Club of Belleville was so fortunate to have been assigned to host Selina as our Youth Exchange Student, an excellent Ambassador for her club in Helsinki and for our club in the local community.  Selina is a lovely young lady, smart, talented, confident and a real go getter.  It is obvious from her presentation that she has taken full advantage of what Rotary, her school Centennial and the wider community has to offer.  She was wise to seek out opportunities in our community to do the things she enjoys.  She loves singing and dancing and we were fortunate to have her share her talents at some of our Rotary functions.  Selina deserves a lot of credit for really making an effort to meet and get to know Rotary members.  She joined a different table and sat beside different people each week.  That isn't something just any 17 year old would do in a room full of adults!  We wish her all the best in her future endeavours, especially at musical theatre school in London, England next year.  We hope she will continue in Rotary in the future because she will make an outstanding Rotarian, making a difference wherever she is in the world.  All the best Selina!
    My Year in Canada Selina Savijoki 2017-06-12 04:00:00Z 0

    Proposed New Rotarian

    Posted on Feb 23, 2017
    Jennifer Savani has been proposed by Tracy Bray under the classification of Legal Municipal Law.  If no written objections are received to the Secretary within seven (7) days of this notice, then Jennifer will be asked to join the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Proposed New Rotarian 2017-02-23 05:00:00Z 0

    Paul Harris Award Winners

    President Shannon Neely presented Paul Harris Fellows for three members of the club who have completed 10 years of Service Above Self with the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Congratulations to:
    Maureen Piercy Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Plus 2
    John Sherratt Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Plus 1
    Sharon McConnell Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Plus 1
    Paul Harris Award Winners 2017-02-13 05:00:00Z 0

    Michael Summers - Cyber Safety

    Posted on Feb 13, 2017
    Kristin Crowe introduced Michael, a club member. At the age of 14, Michael built his first  computer with the help of his dad, Dale, and a base engineer. Michael was selected as one of 43 gifted persons in a competition across Canada. Since the age of 17, he has led several development teams through various systems projects for different  companies and services. In 1995, Michael created NESDA Technologies Ltd. and currently employs a team of 18 people.  He has built two data centres in Canada. In his spare time, Michael is a movie and live theatre buff; he enjoys home renovations and ballroom dancing lessons (with Rotarian Margaret Seu), and he frequents live concerts.
    Michael started off his presentation reminding us that we are all familiar with the old fashioned outhouse and many of us remember needing to go to the bathroom with the aid of a flashlight. Today, indoor plumbing is the norm, except for the remote cottage areas where an outhouse may still serve this need. In today’s society we also have a permanently manned space station, built by many countries, in a collaborative effort of the world’s superpowers and their amazing scientists. We are all somewhere between outhouses and space stations when it comes to technology.
    When he first started with computers the unlimited potential of these devices came to us on the form of interactive games like “Pong” and then systems evolved – we had spreadsheets and word processors. We had better monitoring for quality control and then robotics became commonplace in manufacturing. Each new step has been
    Natural evolution of the previous one. And now we are in a time when connectivity becomes a part of everyday life, as evidenced by your blue tooth in your car, and your smart phone, and your downloaded music. We all think this is amazing. The best of the best allows things like Google drive, which virtually takes over your car with your personalized settings. Our watches can now be Garmins or fit bits which not only tell time, but let us monitor heart rates, steps, tell us when we get a text or a phone call, and report our daily steps to the Internet. Refrigerators are sold which can keep track of the food and give you a reminder to stop for groceryies on the drive home. The high end ones can even place an order to the grocery store for you and have the goods delivered to your door. Thermostats are sold that allow Ontario Hydro to control the heat in your home. On the surface we can understand Ontario’s need to conserve our Hydro dollars, but we are used to adjusting the heat in our own homes. We can, alternatively, get a smart thermostat from Lowe’s or Home Depot that allows us to control the heat via our smart phones, all because of the Internet.
    Now we have a phrase, “the Internet of Things” …. It refers to a collection of devices that that you can control based on the whim of the moment. Turn down the heat. Turn on a light. Turn off the stove.  Unlock the front door.
    My purpose today is to bring all of this to your attention. We have so many devices that are controlled by computers and are connected to the Internet, and some of these need monitoring. Medical implants can communicate through Bluetooth and send information directly to the doctor, who can make changes with the heart monitor from his/her office. The speed with which the Internet of things is developing is so fast that most companies fail to pay attention to security. We can talk about the online security and that web page that pops up and insists that you need help. Or the University that gets hacked with Ransomware. We can see how easy it is to steal a Tesla (video) – and how easy it is for a hacker to steal your password so that you cannot access your own car.
    We all believe we are invincible, but we can all become victims. The best precaution is knowledge. We invite hackers into our homes through cell phones or the latest electronic do-dads.  What do we do? It is simple:
    • Change your password\
    • Don’t have the same password for everything
    • Don’t use simple passwords – make them complex with numbers and symbols and upper and lower case letters.
    • Don’t tell ANYONE your password.
    • Don’t write your password on a sticky note to post on your computer.
    • If any device can be password protected, then protect it.
    • Keep a copy of your passwords outside of your house.
    • Finally, the advice your mother gave you is true – if it seems too good to be true, it likely is.  It is likely someone is trying to steal your password.
    Michael Summers - Cyber Safety Judy McKnight 2017-02-13 05:00:00Z 0

    2017/18 Rotary Club Board of Directors

    President Elect Tracy Bray in our return to the Travelodge for our regular club meetings announced the results of the voting for the 2017/2018 Board of Directors for the Rotary Club of Belleville.
    Past President: Shannon Neely
    President: Tracy Bray
    President-elect: Andrew Bandler
    Vice President and Secretary:  Doug Peterson
    Treasurer: Darrell Smith
    Board of Directors
    Brenda Snider
    John Sherratt
    Drew Brown
    Eric Thompson
    Adam Zegouras
    Nadine Langlois
    Tim McKinney
    Nick Foley
    2017/18 Rotary Club Board of Directors 2017-02-13 05:00:00Z 0

    Quinte Conservation

    Posted by Jennifer May-Anderson on Feb 06, 2017
    Jennifer May-Anderson is the Communications Manager of the Quinte Conservation Authority and has been  in that position for 9 years . She is responsible for informing the public of situations which affect our area, especially in the area of water levels, whether they be too low or too high. 
    The Quinte Conservation Authority  is one of 36 conservation authorities within Ontario, and is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. The mandate of the Conservation Authority is to ensure the conservation, restoration, and responsible management of  Ontario's water, land and natural habitats,  through programs  that balance environmental, human and economic needs.
    The Quinte Conservation Authority was formed when  the Moira River, Napanee, and Prince Edward Region Authorities were combined in 1996. The Authority is set up  on a watershed basis. Our watersheds include the Moira River, Napanee Region, and Prince Edward Region Watersheds, , covering a total of 6.600 square kilometers. All of our watersheds drain into the Bay of Quinte.
    Eighteen member municipalities appoint  people to serve on the board for the Authority, which is funded by municipal levies, provincial and federal grants.  The staff is comprised of over 25  people with various backgrounds and skills ( a water resources engineer, environmental planner, forestry specialist, naturalist, financial coordinator, field technicians, and other environmental specialists) , many of whom are Loyalist College graduates. The authority enjoys partnerships with  federal and provincial governments, "friends" of the authority, local schools and businesses, land owners, community groups,  and service clubs. 
    Quinte Conservation provides services to reduce the threat of loss of life  and property damage, by issuing flood warnings, flood forecasting,  and through the operation and maintenance of flood control structures. The Conservation Authority coordinates the local low water response team that provides information, leadership and preparedness in the event of a drought. These structures include 39 water control structures, 14 flood control structures, and other structures that provide for seasonal recreation, low flow augmentation, and local water supply. We are responsible for water quality monitoring, and we sample in rivers, streams, wells, and ground water sources. 
    We provide technical advice to municipalities, landowners, lawyers and developers.
    We are responsible for protecting  sources of municipal drinking water from overuse and contamination and we are facilitators in  developing a Source Water Protection Plan. We work with Lower Trent Conservation Authority  and federal and provincial governments on the "big Cleanup" of the Bay of Quinte.
    We own over 30,000 acres of land, and have over 20 Conservation areas open to the public daily, from dawn to dusk. One conservation area doubles as a campground.  (Depot Lakes - 3,000 acres, 4 lakes, interior and seasonal campsites) 
    The McLeod Dam Green energy Project  - this was modified in 2007 - 2008  to generate electricity, enough to power 400 homes. This renewable energy reduces the equivalent of 5,000 tons of carbon dioxide each year  from our air. 
    Our education programs include the "Stream of Dreams" which educates school children on the life and function  of the watersheds in our area. This is followed by an art workshop which produces painted "dream fish" on school yard fences.  
    Low water has been a serious problem recently, and the Conservation Authority has been responsible for reporting, and advising communities of Low Water Conditions: Level I - potential water supply problem; voluntary conservation (10% reduction in use) Level II - potentially serious water problem; conservation and restrictions on non - essential use  (20% reduction in use) Level 3 - failure of the water supply to meet the demand; conservation, restriction and regulation.
    The Conservation Authority maintains water monitoring  networks and  and data,  has strong links with the community  groups, media, and government, and may  facilitate  coordination of water  conservation messages. We operate dams and reservoirs and can verify MNRF data and low water conditions  in the field. We monitor local stream  health  and water quality. 
    This past summer, we saw the  lowest water levels recorded in Beaver Lake, the Salmon River at Croydon, the Skootamatta River  at Price conservation Area and Consecon Creek. We need a lot of snow this winter to bring back the ground water levels; rain that falls now on frozen ground will just run off into rivers and streams, and will not help to replenish ground water sources. 
    Municipalities can enforce water use restrictions - they do not necessarily report back to the Conservation Authorities. 
    Andrew Bandler thanked Jennifer  and commented that it is great to know we have  a local authority monitoring and advising us on our water levels and quality.
    Quinte Conservation Jennifer May-Anderson 2017-02-06 05:00:00Z 0

    Rotary Christmas Fellowship Lunch

    With the children still in school, we opted this year to have a Rotary Christmas Fellowship lunch in place of our annual Family Christmas lunch.   Prior to the beginning of our Christmas festivities all members in attendance were  asked to vote about our preferred location for our regular lunch meetings, staying at the Banquet Center or returning to the Travelodge.  Voting results to be provided on the 9th of January and our new or old location for lunch to  be initiated in mid February.  While some business was discussed via Happy Bucks and Club Business, the meeting focus was simply on Fellowship and the Christmas spirit.  A full turkey dinner with all the trimmings was provided and a box of chocolates was provided to each  member of the club by Gleaners Foodbank and one  of our guests Suzanne Quinlan, Director of Operations.  The chocolates were a way for Gleaners to thank Rotarians for their generous donations of Christmas hams , a total of 42 hams, to round out the food distribution over the holidays.
    Suzanne Quinlan, Director of Operations of Gleaners Foodbank (Quinte) Inc. explained how we were in receipt of a box of chocolates for each Rotarian.  Suzanne had received a call a couple of years ago from Stover's Chocolates in Pennsylvania and asked whether Gleaners could use 30 skids of chocolates.  They happily accepted the offer and still have about 1-2 skids left of the chocolates that they are distributing with their hampers as well to other individuals and groups.
    Selina, our exchange student sang two Finnish Christmas carols for us which were Enets valtaa, loistea and Heinilla, harkien, Kaukalon.  Both songs were beautifully performed and we are truly blessed to have such an artistic and musically gifted young lady as our exchange student.  She certainly enhances our meetings with her musical contributions.
    John and Wanda Chisholm led us in  a couple of Christmas carols accompanied as always by Rudy, who not quite prepared to give up on providing music for the day, led us in an impromptu rendition of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer to complete our musical entertainment for the day.
    Rotary Christmas Fellowship Lunch Darrell Smith 2016-12-19 05:00:00Z 0

    2015/2016 Rotary Club AGM

    The Rotary Club of Belleville held its 15/16 AGM during our regular weekly  lunch meeting on the 12th of December.  President  Shannon Neely called the AGM to order at 12:32 pm. Asking for a motion to approve the circulated agenda, moved by Hal Wilson and seconded by Ian Acton and approved by the members in attendance.  Shannon introduced  Treasurer Andrew Bandler who presented the circulated financial report and called on our auditor Mike McMurray partner at Welch and Company to present the financial report. A full financial report will be available on the  club website and Mike presented a financial synopsis of our 2015/2016 Rotary year.
     In the General Account, revenues decreased by approximately $14,000 to $108,440 versus 2015 which  reflected primarily a one time reimbursement of website costs as a donation in 2015.
    Disbursements in the General Account decreased by approximately $18,000 versus 2015 Rotary year and resulted in a reduction of the deficit on the general account from $11,000 in 2015 to $6,940 for the 16 Rotary year.
    Service Revenues in 2015/16 were $256,000 down $48,000 from the 14/15 Rotary year predominantly 1x item receipts received for specific initiatives in 14/15.
    Service Disbursements were up $66,000 to $291,475 versus 14/15 and reflected a large one time item of  $66,000 to the Amorak Society and created a deficit in the Service Account of $34,000 versus a surplus of $79,672 in the 2014/15 Rotary year.
    Assets at the end of the 15/16 Rotary year were $680,533 predominantly held in GICs, the Parrot trust and other investments with  $180,359 held in bank accounts.
    There were no questions from the  membership and a motion put forward by Keith Stansfield and seconded by Carol Feeney to accept the 15/16 Financial Statements was approved.
    Treasurer Andrew then asked for a motion to approve Welch and Company as our auditors for the 16/17 Rotary year and was moved by Sam Brady and seconded by John Smale, and approved by the membership.
    President Shannon called upon Past President Kelly McKinney to provide his annual  report to the club.  PP Kelly started off by commenting that at the beginning of his tenure he asked us as  club members to do less and was happy that in the end we had not listened to him as he provided a recap of some of the significant events realized within our club during the past Rotary year. A full depiction of Kelly's  report will be on the club website and here are  just a few of the items that Kelly highlighted to the club during his  presentation.
    Presidential Citation award to the club for meeting RI objectives for  the year, which Kelly thinks should be renamed as not a President's award it is a club award.
    District Leadership awards presented to Len Kennedy, Adam Zegouras and the two certificates ADG Ken Dickson presented earlier in the meeting to Dave Allen and John Sherratt.
    Community Paul Harris awards presented to Dr. Aruna Alexander, James Hurst and Suzanne Quinlan.
    Our work in the community through Special Needs Children Committee and Christmas party, Community Grants and Camp Merrywood and the many hours manning the Christmas Kettle for the Salvation Army and their biggest kettle location to name a few.
    Through International Service, grants to First Nations of  $8,000, Kids Against Hunger and AIDs Action committee and $28,000 put into AIDS related programs.
    $55,000 spent to better human conditions in the world, ranging from Mexico to  Jordan to Uganda and Fort McMurray Alberta after the community was ravaged by wild fires.
    Continued support of youth through the Mayors of the Week, Rotary Music Festival, inbound and outbound exchange students, bursaries to the 8 local high schools and supporting RYLA at Loyalist College.
    Successful fundraising events such as RLK, Rotary Poker Walk for Aids, Christmas Hams, Diners and Duffers and Waterfront Beverage Service that facilitate all of outreach efforts locally and globally.
    Again a very successful year of Service Above Self by the members of the Rotary Club of Belleville in a year we were asked to do less and rose to the challenge by doing more.
    2015/2016 Rotary Club AGM Darrell Smith 2016-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

    District Citations for  15/16 Rotary Year

    ADG Ken Dickson presented District 7070 Leadership Awards to Len Kennedy, Dave Allen and John Sherratt.    District 7070 Leadership Award Recognition is handed out annually by the District Governor in the form of a pin that recognizes the leadership of a District Rotarian having completed three criteria by May 31st of the current Rotary year -- the Rotarian practices wearing their Rotary pin every day, brings one new member into Rotary and makes a personal donation of any amount to the Rotary Foundation.  Len, Dave and John are recognized for their commitment to Rotary during the 15/16 Rotary year.   Congratulations. 
    District Citations for 15/16 Rotary Year 2016-12-12 05:00:00Z 0

    President Kelly's Final Presentation to the Club

    President Kelly presented a recap of his year as President of the Rotary Club of Belleville during his final meeting as Club President.  
    Kelly started his presentation by thanking Lola Reid Allin for creating the slide show of our Rotary year that ran during lunch and Kelly's presentation.
    Kelly warned that is always risky to start naming individuals when you are thanking people, for fear of missing people but did not see any other way around it.
    Kelly started by thanking his wife Debbie for her patience and guidance. Kelly also as an aside thanked Sam Brady for advising Debbie that we were not meeting at the Travelodge and were in fact at the Banquet Centre, a fact that Kelly forgot to provide to Debbie.  Kelly advised that we really as a club got 2 presidents for the price of one, as he used Debbie as a sounding board for many of the ideas for his year as President, and if there were initiatives that did not meet our members' fancy,  Debbie was probably against it and Kelly went ahead and did it anyway.
    Kelly then thanked his Rotary wife Jennifer Tretina-Nelson for all her work as program chair, but also for the President's Night Dinner which was great, a night when he should have publicly thanked Jennifer for her amazing job that night, but as well for her work week in and week out coordinating speakers and organizing details.
    Kelly thanked Andrew Bandler for his work as treasurer following in great examples set by previous treasurers Ray McCoy and Shannon Neely.
    To Bill MacKay Jr., Kelly thanked him for his incredible guidance on all things Rotary. Bill knew what needed to be done relating to board procedures and was always able to provide relevant club history. Though Bill is stepping down from the Board, Bill will be taking on the role of leading Mentorship which is great for the club.
    Kelly thanked his board members for all their hard work and dedication to the Club during the past year. He praised each of them for their individual contributions, Judy McKnight who has recently stepped down from the Board, Birgit for her work with First Nations and Kids Against Hunger, Chris Finkle who is retiring from the board after this year, who made Hitz of the Blitz a reality through his persistence, Nadine  Langlois for her leadership in editing and leading the Bulletin Committee (pictured here, Paige Summers, Jeanette Minaker, Alan Kelly, Mark Bishop, Darrell Smith, Judy McKnight, Nadine Langlois and Maggie Smith) , and the other members of his board Brenda Snider, John Sherratt, Doug Peterson and Len Kennedy as Past President providing support and guidance. To each for  their contribution to the success of the Rotary Club of Belleville during the past year, Kelly expressed his thanks.
    Kelly acknowledged the tremendous work of Shannon Neely as his number 2 man and now moves into the President's role in the upcoming Rotary Year and Tracy Bray who will take on that role in the following year and has volunteered countless hours to all things Rotary both locally and at a district level.
    Kelly thanked our new incoming directors who stepped up to make a difference in Rotary, Nick Foley, Adam Zegouras, Eric Thompson, and Drew Brown who stepped in when Judy McKnight had to step down.
    To follow Kelly's guidance will try to acknowledge all those Kelly acknowledged during his speech without repeating his speech verbatim and so will hopefully not miss people.
    Kelly thanked the following for their various  contributions to the club
    Kerry Paul for his AV work each week
    Richard Tie for music each week
    Elizabeth Grew and Sharon McConnell for getting the global grant after all these years and  Michael Maloney for initial work on the Literacy program with RCB
    Lola Reid Allin for all the pictures of all that was Rotary in the past year, by attending all our meetings and events to provide a pictorial history for future reference and for the slide show today.
    Committee chairs:  Colin Leaver, Dr. Ruth, Darrell Smith, Harold Brennan, Karen Baker, Vince Lynch and Kristin Crowe for another successful Merrywood, Hugh Campbell, Birgit for First Nations,  Len for Foundation, Amy Doyle, Sharon McConnell for Literacy and Spelling Bee, Dave Allen for all his work on membership this year and stepping into new role with Satelllite Club along with Adam Zegouras and Ryan Hilmi for helping to get it off the ground, Tara Lyons for Vocational Service and moving into Program for the 16/17 Rotary year and Jeanette Minaker for leading beverage service for Waterfront and while typically a next year event already been doing all kinds of work now.
    John Chisholm for keeping Ken Wormald's Rotary Music Festival alive,  Rudy Heijdens, Drew Brown for PR, Pat Feasy, Dave Stewart and Mike Stiff for reception, Greg Knudsen (also of the Travelodge location today)  and Sam Brady for raising large amounts of funds via RLK,  Bernie Ouellet for raising a whack of money each year through RLK sponsors, Vince Lynch for the Roster, John Smale for a very successful Rotary Aids Walk, Dianne Spencer for RYLA which Kelly attended and wants to be part of next year and Dave Allen for his work as Sergeant at Arms Duties. Bill King was recognized  for his sage counsel on all things by-law, Tracy Bray for Special Needs Children Christmas Party, and Sam Brady for his work on the Rotary Youth Exchange and his friendship. Though Kelly didn't want to cry like a Brady, did want to publicly thank Sam for his contribution to the President's Night and would thank him once so as to avoid shedding tears.
    Kelly talked about the Club 50 Group as one of the greatest things accomplished this year, and acknowledged Bill MacKay Sr., Bob Ord,  Bob Graham, Ken Wormald, Mac Smith and Bob Michaud Sr. for their 50+years of service above  self.''
    To the past presidents Kelly thanked them for their support and without naming names, thanked those who had spoken up when they didn't like  things.   Kelly appreciated their honesty and desire to state their beliefs, and it is healthy to have differences of opinions and those opinions put forward.   It is what makes Rotary work, the healthy exchange of ideas, the same with family,  in fact Kelly believes it makes everything work when we share our opinions and provide feedback and encouraged us as members to continue to put forth those ideas, opinions as we enter Shannon's year.
    Kelly was greeted by a standing ovation at the completion of his presentation to his year as President, a fitting tribute to a done very well done. Congratulations Kelly on a great year as President.
    President Kelly's Final Presentation to the Club 2016-06-27 04:00:00Z 0

    The Passing of the Baton

    At the conclusion of Kelly's presentation to the club, incoming Club President Shannon Neely thanked Kelly for his leadership as President the past year and presented him with Past President's badge and as a Rotary Club of Belleville tradition, a Paul Harris Fellow, which is Kelly's first Paul Harris fellow.
    Kelly presented Shannon with the official President's Pin (the one to wear) and the one to keep in safekeeping and  wished Shannon great success in his year as President and with that Kelly's year as Rotary Club of Belleville President, came to an end.
    The Passing of the Baton 2016-06-27 04:00:00Z 0

    Perfect Attendance Recipients for 14/15 Rotary Year

    President Kelly McKinney read some additional names of recipients of perfect attendance for the 14/15 Rotary year that had been previously omitted during the last meeting.
    Receiving acknowledgements for Perfect Attendance in  addition to those named  last week:
    Judy McKnight 4 years
    John Cairns:  13 years
    Ray McCoy: 19 years
    Congratulations to all members recognized for perfect attendance during the past 2 weeks.
    Perfect Attendance Recipients for 14/15 Rotary Year 2016-06-20 04:00:00Z 0

    Council on Legislation

    Secretary Bill MacKay provided the club an update on the Council on Legislation held April 12 - 15 in Chicago.  534 Rotary districts were represented and 117 proposed enactments were presented to amend the Rotary Constitution which would directly affect how clubs were  organized.  The last council in 2013 was responsible for the changes that have allowed for our club to create a Satellite Club and more recently the Council agreed to when and how often clubs can meet as well as removing the definition of a meeting to allow for more modern technological options.  Changes to attendance policy which now has an attendance rate of 50% as a requirement and the  ability for members to receive make ups for all committee meetings attended.  In addition Bill mentioned that consideration was being given to new types of Rotary membership, including corporate, family and associate memberships.
    Bill closed with the only approved resolution to be realized at the 2016 Council of Legislation which is the primary corporate objective of the eradication of Polio on earth.  Until this goal is realized there will be no other goals entertained at the corporate level for Rotary International.
    Council on Legislation 2016-06-20 04:00:00Z 0

    Dr. Ruth Mathieson in Kenya

    Posted on Mar 14, 2016
    Dr. Ruth Mathieson just returned from 5 1/2 weeks in Kenya, her 10th trip there.  She thanked the Rotary Club for their donation of $2,000 used to purchase medication which helped treat 1,200 HIV/AIDS infected people registered at her clinic.  Most are doing well.  Life expectancy has gone up which is encouraging to those overseeing improving health in the community.  Dedicated people like Dr. Ruth!
    Dr. Ruth Mathieson in Kenya 2016-03-14 04:00:00Z 0

    Guest Speaker - Nikola Toomat

    Amy Doyle introduced Nikola Toomat, a teacher with the HPEDSB, who leads an after school program for students, "Students for Africa in Mutual Empowerment for International Development". With Nikola were several students from four different schools who meet regularly to learn about African children, their culture and way of life, and also to raise funds to help these children have more supplies for their schools. This organization is set up as a non -profit organization in Ontario, and they are seeking charitable status. The organization is 100% volunteer-based and all money raised is sent to the community in Tanzania to improve the living conditions and education opportunities of children in rural Africa.
    Nikola grew up in Lesotho, Africa,  but now teaches in public schools in Canada. She started at Prince Charles School in the Hastings board and has changed schools 3 times, setting up a club in each school. She is also a member of a band, called "Suck it up, Princess". smiley
    The objective of the after school program is about children helping children, while gaining knowledge about life in another part of the world.  Young people devote time, creativity and energy to fundraising initiatives, correspondence and learning more about life in another part of the world.  The program helps students understand the needs of  our world, and to enable them to see that they can help to make the world a better place. The grade 5-6 curriculum focuses on children around the world, and Nikola's students have connected with children who are part of a Masai tribe in Tanzania, Africa, a community of approximately 500 people.   They have written letters back and forth and have had face time on Skype with their counterparts in Africa. They have special fundraising projects , such as plant sales, craft sales, and electronic recycling depot days, to help raise money to buy pencils and other school supplies. They are also  helping to build a well, and put in solar panels in the village where the African children live and providing the salary for a nursery school teacher to take care of small children in the village.  A scholarship program is in place through the program's fundraising efforts so that a member of the village can train to be a teacher.  Desks, benches, uniforms, soccer balls and other school supplies have also been provided.
    A video on how to be a global citizen was shown, featuring the children in the school clubs..
    200 lbs of clothing were taken to Tanzania last summer to assist these children and their families.
    The students answered questions :
    - getting to know kids in Africa has shown me how lucky we are in Canada.
    - red is a significant colour because it is the colour of blood, and it reminds the people how important their cattle are to their economy
    - in Tanzania, kids are learning English in school, and we have learned some Swahili - we use Google translate to help in pur communication.
    - we Skype more often than we write letters because the cost of mailing is high, and it takes a long time for letters to go back and forth
    - we have some boys in the clubs, but girls seem to be more interested than boys in projects like this
    - we have made skipping ropes from milk bags, art from discarded wood pieces, and we sell these to get soccer balls, pay for a  pre-school teacher, and get pots and pan for households
    Upcoming events that you can support:
    - yard sale in Trenton - Sat., May 28, electronics recycling in Trenton, May 27 - June 29 (2 locations: 390 Sidney Street, and 36-40 Rivers Dr.)
    Contact info@students forafrica.org for more details.
    In - kind donations  (new or gently used items) - cuddly African animals, airmail paper and greeting cards, yarn and large crochet hooks, clean milk bags, hammers, nails and sewing scissors, children's books about Africa
    Elizabeth Grew thanked Nikola and the children for coming.
    Guest Speaker - Nikola Toomat Judy McKnight 2016-03-02 05:00:00Z 0

    Community Service Club Luncheon With Colonel Colin Keiver

    Posted on Feb 02, 2016
    The Banquet Centre was the host for the 2016 Community Service Club luncheon.  An annual tradition of the Rotary Club of Belleville and the Kiwanis Club of Belleville, this year representatives from the Kente Kiwanis Club, the Rotary Club of  Quinte Sunrise, Lions Club, Kinettes of Belleville, Kiwanis Club of Tweed, Kiwanis Club of Trenton, Probus Club of Belleville and Probus Club of Quinte joined together to hear our guest speaker Colonel Colin Keiver Commander of 8 Wing CFB Trenton.  Over 130 members of the various service clubs were in attendance.
    Past Lieutentant Governor of the Kiwanis Club Armin Quickert introduced Colin Keiver who was raised in Alberta on a farm and whose brothers went on to have one of the largest farming operations in Alberta.  Colonel Keiver had a different calling and earned his pilot wings in 1994 after joining the RCAF in 1991.  Colonel Keiver found his love of flying while attending cadets as a high school student where he met his other love, his wife Jennifer in 1985.  Colonel Keiver has 2 children and has held postings at Moose Jaw, Winnipeg, North Carolina and Trenton and has over 4000 hours of flying.
    Also joining Colonel Keiver at the head table were Wing Chief Darcy Elder, Marilyn Quickert, BRC President Kelly McKinney and the President of the Belleville Kiwanis Club.
    Colonel Keiver spoke about the importance of connecting the base with the people of Belleville.  He provided a CFB Trenton 101 for those in attendance.  CFB Trenton was opened in 1931 and is celebrating its 45th anniversary this year.  CFB  Trenton is the largest employer in the region with over 4400 military and civilian personnel and 15,000 dependents who represent 18% of all students in the HPEC Board of Education.

    The annual operating budget of 8 Wing Trenton is 160,000, 000 with an annual payroll of 110 million, which obviously has tremendous impact upon the local economy. 
    The CFB Trenton Search and Rescue area as Colonel Keiver displayed on a map of Canada is a huge area, in fact is the largest SAR area covered in the world. From the northern tip of their search area to the southern tip, the distance if you fly directly south would take you to almost Buenos Aires Argentina.
    Three missions are currently being serviced by CFB Trenton personnel, including 3 missions in Africa and a number of smaller missions. Due to the vast area where these missions are being undertaken, the staff of CFB Trenton are even busier than during the campaign in Afghanistan.
    Colonel Keiver talked about the return of the Quinte International Air Show on June 25th and 26th and his hopes to draw over 100,000 people to the base over the weekend and a number of the events and shows being held and the opportunity to create partnerships with local businesses and service clubs to support the weekend.
    A special recognition event held during the weekend will commemorate the BCATP which was the training of pilots during WWII that was coordinated and ran at Trenton and also the time when Canadian squadrons were created and the now familiar 4 numbers such as 424, 436 etc were developed depicting their true Canadian roots.
    Colonel Keiver talked about some other aspects of CFB Trenton 8 Wing which may not be as well known as the base and the work that goes on there.  He talked very proudly of Roundell Golf Course and his favourite hole the 6th and its dogleg and also the availability of excuses from planes landing or taking off for errant shots.
    Colonel Keiver talked about the work of the MFRC and the support they provide to military families and personnel during postings and deployments as almost inevitably something goes wrong for the families the minute their loved ones are deployed and the MFRC is there to support them. He further talked about the importance of the Invisible Ribbon Gala which recognizes the family of military personnel and the Gala which raises funds to provide support to our military families.
    Colonel Keiver closed his presentation talking about the National Air Force Museum and how great an asset it is to our local community in terms of providing a historical perspective of Canadian military aviation history and as having one of only 2 Cdn bombers that saw action in WWII that exists in the world.  He talked very proudly of its growth as a centre used by many non profit organizations as great venue for their events.
    Colonel Keiver answered a number of questions from the audience including the fact that the Prime Mininster’s plane is under his command and is maintained at the Base until required to be flown to Ottawa to take the Prime Minister to wherever he needs to go.  Other questions, Colonel Keiver answered include use of drones in SAR, capacity for the Base for the Air Show, what role could our service clubs provide for the Air Show, the status of the Base as a temporary home for Syrian hostages and the outlook for the cadets program this summer with the potential of Syrian refugees being housed there if policy is changed.  Colonel Keiver said that the cadets are in for a treat as this will be the first summer cadet barracks are air-conditioned.

    Colonel Keiver was thanked for his presentation with a standing ovation.

    A 50/50 draw was held with the proceeds going to the National Air Force Museum Foundation and $67 was won by one of the attendees.
    Community Service Club Luncheon With Colonel Colin Keiver Darrell Smith 2016-02-02 05:00:00Z 0

    Christmas Family Luncheon

    December 21st saw our annual Christmas family luncheon with many members of our extended Rotary family attending, including many spouses, children and grandchildren.
    Once again Community Paul Harris winner Andy Forgie provided the entertainment including his now famous socks and underwear song. 
    A surprise visitor was a very stylish Mrs. Clause (aka Jennifer Tretina) who provided gifts to those younger guests in attendance.  An enjoyable time was had by all.
    Santa's helper was none other than Mrs. Clause's offspring, Justin.  Everyone looking happy and festive, especially the pretty young lady receiving a gift.
    Christmas Family Luncheon 2016-01-02 05:00:00Z 0

    Club AGM

    Current RCB President Kelly McKinney and Current Treasurer Andrew Bandler presided over the 2014/15 AGM in the absence of Past President Len Kennedy who was attending a funeral and past treasurer who was home tending to sick children.  President Kelly opened the meeting by drawing attention to information including agendas left on tables for the membership.
    President Kelly asked for a motion to approve the agenda, so moved by Bill Mackay and seconded by Sam Brady and approved by the membership.
    President Kelly introduced treasurer Andrew who presented the audited financial statements and asked our auditor Mike McMurray of Welch and Company (pictured here) who presented a financial recap of the 2014/15 Rotary year.
    Mike drew attention to the membership of the financial statements on the tables.  Mike indicated that general account revenues had increased by $23,000 from 13/14 Rotary year to $122,382 and general account expenditures had grown by $3,900 to $133,945. This presented a deficit on the general account of $11,563 versus a deficit of $30,141 in 2013/14.
    In the service account Mike indicated that revenues increased by $5