The Rotary Club of Brisbane has been a proud supporter of the  Kyeema Foundation, a Brisbane-based not-for-profit organisation since November 2018. The project we are supporting involves the breeding and conservation of indigenous village chickens in Papua New Guinea (PNG). RCOB initially supported set-up of a village chicken farm for Haus Pikinini in Wau, Morobe Province, which is a community home that looks after 30 children from the local community who have no-one to provide for them. We supported the set-up of the chicken shed and yard, purchase of local chickens for breeding and training in village chicken keeping. Kyeema are still providing support to Haus Pikinini with the management of their chickens.

In April 2020, RCOB provided a donation of A$3,980 to support setting up of another village chicken farmer in Gabagaba village. Kopure Airi (Kopsi) was trained as a Master Farmer in Fiji in October 2019. Since then, he has returned to his village in Gabagaba, Central Province and with funds provided by RCOB, has been set up as a Master Farmer of village chickens for his community. The picture below shows the chicken house built and stocked using Rotary funds as part of this project.

The RCOB support is part of a larger project being supported with funds from the Australian Government’s NGO Cooperation Program, which means that every dollar provided by RCOB has been matched by an additional five dollars from the Australian government.

This project also includes support of community-led no fish zones and coral reef gardening activities. One of the nutrition problems faced by coastal communities is that of reef degradation, reducing available protein sources. The solution for the reef is a rebuilding and re-seeding process, but this takes time and requires that the reef become a no-fish zone for an extended period of time. Without a replacement source of protein, this would potentially result in malnutrition. This is where village chickens come into play. They provide an alternative food source and livelihood activity while the reef is being mended.

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We meet In Person
Mondays at 12:15 PM
Friday's Riverside
Riverside Centre
123 Eagle St.
Brisbane, QLD 4000
We meet at Friday's Riverside on Mondays at 12:15pm for 12:45 sit down. On occasion we may meet elsewhere or at another time, so visiting Rotarians should check the calendar on our website or contact our secretary to confirm.
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Meeting Responsibilities
Meeting - 25th March
Presidential Duty
Saxby, Phillip
International Toast
GIBSON, Cameron
Rotary Info Spot
Vocational visit to QBI - 8th April
Presidential Duty
Sah, Pankaj
Meeting - 15th April
Presidential Duty
Saxby, Phillip
Saxby, Peter
International Toast
WATTS, Keith
Rotary Info Spot
Meeting - April 22
Presidential Duty
Saxby, Phillip
GIBSON, Cameron
International Toast
Rotary Info Spot

In 2020, the Rotary Club of Brisbane provided an early grant of $50,000 to the Mater Foundation for the establishment of a specialist perinatal mental health facility at the Mater Hospital in South Brisbane. In Queensland, more than 60,000 babies are born each year, yet there is only one public 4-bed mother and baby perinatal mental health facility in the entire state. 

There is an immediate, unmet need in our community to respond to the needs of women—and their partners and children—who experience perinatal mental health issues before and after their baby is born. Statistics show that 1 in 5 mothers and 1 in 10 fathers experience perinatal depression and anxiety. A distrurbingly large number of these will experience very serious health issues and suicide is now the leading cause of maternal death in Australia. 

Catherine’s House will change that. With the help of philanthropy and the community, Mater will create a vital service for women who experience perinatal mental health issues.

Mater Family Wellbeing Service will complement and integrate with other Mater Health services across Queensland, including Mater’s Neonatal Critical Care Unit, 24-hour Pregnancy Assessment Centre, Parenting Support Centre and Parent Aide Unit. The new service will be co-located with Mater’s paediatricians, lactation consultants, psychologists, allied health professionals and mental health services, in Catherine’s House. It will be just metres away from Mater Mothers’ Hospital in South Brisbane. Once established, the Mater Family Wellbeing Service will complete Mater’s comprehensive offering to parents and their babies.

With the support of the Rotary Club of Brisbane and other donors, work on Catherine's house started earlier this year, but much more help is needed. To find out how you can help, you can download more information by clicking on the button below.

And just like that …. It’s done. The Centenary Gala was a wonderful evening that simply could not have happened without the help, effort and support of the many people, businesses and organisations who decided to lean in and make it a night to remember.

From the pink velvet ropes to the stunning venue, glittering guests and dancing till midnight it was a magical night and fitting way to celebrate 100 years of Rotary in Australasia. The Rotary Club of Brisbane would like to thank those who attended, those who made financial and auction contributions, those who bid on the auctions, those who braved the stage to inform, encourage and inspire the audience, Galabid, W Brisbane and their team, Richard O’Leary from Event Photography and who could forget the spectacular Ben Trigger?

Together we raised about $15,000 for Jelly Beans via Open Doors which enables them to continue their critical work supporting vulnerable young people in the Brisbane area. We also raised over $17,500 for PolioPlus which, matched with a 2 for 1 contribution from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and a 50% match from the RI Foundation World Fund, will supply as many as 175,000 doses of polio vaccine to children who would otherwise be susceptible to this debilitating disease. The auction of a Painting by PNG artist Serge Ahwong from the Hebouhebou (join together and talk) series raised $600 for the Kyeema Foundation which conducts chicken breeding and reef restoration projects to promote better nutrition in PNG.

Click here for the Centenary Gala photos.

The Club is pleased to announce a grant of $50,000 to the Mater Hospital, South Brisbane, to assist in the establishment of a service to provide perinatal mental health support to mothers, babies and the broader family network in our community.

This new service will offer a wide spectrum of programs including inpatient admissions and an outpatient clinic focussing on supporting babies and families to have the best start in life.

In recognition of the Club’s gift, the Mater will establish the Rotary Club of Brisbane – Best Start Grant to provide professional development for staff who will work in the service to further their knowledge base and expertise in infant and perinatal mental health.

The project involving renovations to an existing heritage building and a new build for inpatient admissions will commence in January, 2021.



The Rotary Club of Brisbane is aiming to inject positivity into our communities by launching a new grants and support project to help budding charities, startup NGOs, and worthwhile entrepreneurs realise their dreams to bring to life ideas that will help the community.

2020 has been a year like no other. We’re all doing it tough. But between the hardship, people have picked each other up and soldiered on. There are some great projects that have started across Australia that are uplifting our communities. Driven by young millennials with big hearts and seasoned campaigners with young hearts - new ideas from startup charities seem to be popping up everywhere. And while they come with the best intentions, some might struggle to realise their potential. The Rotary Club of Brisbane introduces - Sponsordea: a platform to open applications for Ideas for Humanity

Rotary Club of Brisbane President, Dan Adler, said “It’s all about great ideas for products and services that help people, the environment, anything and everything is eligible for assistance. If you’ve got one that could help your community and the people in it, by all means, get on the website and apply for a grant today. Whether you’re making soup for the homeless in your family kitchen or creating a plant nursery in your garage and brightening up your neighbourhood. Whatever your idea, if it’s a keeper, check out our website and get amongst it. Together we can make the world a better place.”

Mental health issues and related illnesses have come to the fore in recent times, globally and in Australia, with the government determining that almost half of all Australians aged 16 to 85 years (7.3 million people)  will experience mental illness at some point in their life.
As per Beyond Blue, over 75% of mental health issues occur before the age of 25, with suicide being the largest loss of life of young people in Australia. This has led to organizations such as the This is a Conversation Starter (TIACS) a social enterprise with a goal to change the mental health services landscape, making it accessible and affordable and in doing so, reduce the number of suicides in Australia.
Projects ‘Interruptus yet Effective’ seems to have defined this Rotary year.
My diary tells me we were permitted just seven person-to-person meetings from December 16 until the close in the year. Notwithstanding, our Club was able to continue with its long heritage of participating and giving.
As a club we continued to punch well-above our numbers, participation levels, and average age. No matter ‘Projects Interruptus’ for the second half of the year, we strengthened projects from 2018 & 2019 (Kyeema, Outback Futures, Downs & West Community Outreach, Drought Appeals, Breaking Free, and Youngcare) with financial aid by standing on the shoulders of past RCoB Presidents and Members.
Donations in Kind is a program by which Rotary receives hospital and school equipment, books and much more that is being upgraded within our schools and hospitals and then sends them by container to our near neighbours in PNG, the Solomons and other Pacific Islands Timor L'este and sometimes as far as India. It is dependent on community-minded staff in schools, hospitals and other organisations who alert Rotarians to the fact that there is still-useful equipment that is to be sent to the dump. Rotarians then donate their time to collect and transport the material to the DIK warehouse in Kingston and later to pack it into containers to be sent to destinations that need it. Donations in Kind in Queensland was originally a project of the Rotary Club of Brisbane but has now expanded across the whole state and is managed under the umbrella of Rotary Australia World Community Service (RAWCS).
The Rotary Club of Brisbane has appointed Rtn Paul Choy as their Donations In Kind convenor in recognition of the importance of the Donations In Kind Programme has in the activities of Rotary in Australia and the Rotary Club of Brisbane in particular. Paul has been in the job for barely 2 months and already we have been busy.
Paul Choy (far Right) and Keith Watts (back to camera) loading a container for PNG on 9th March.

Veteran's Care volunteers distribute kits 4 kids sponsored by the Rotary Club of Brisbane to students in Timor-Leste

A group of Australian veterans recently conducted an 11 day Veteran Health program distributing 2,000 Kits 4 Kids in remote rural areas of Timor Leste. The program also involved a range of physical activities involving daily walks, some cycling, stretching and discussions on a range of physical activity options suitable for veterans. It also included inputs on nutrition, nurture of the mind, the soul and relationships, as well as developing a future life purpose.

Kits 4 Kids is a collaboration between the Rotary Club of Townsville and the Veterans Care Association based in Brisbane. Old Army buddies Bruce Scott from Rotary in Townsville and Gary Stone from Veterans Care Association arranged for the participants in the Timor Awakening rehabilitation programme to pack and deliver, in person to each child, a small education kit . The kits themselves are organised by the Rotary Club of Townsville and the costs are covered by various sponsors. The Rotary Club of Brisbane is proud to be the sponsor of a delivery of 2000 kits in September 2018.
Shoppers at the MacArthur Central shopping centre in the Brisbane CBD might have been a little surprised to see people wearing Rotary aprons and carrying collection tins on the 3 days from the 17th to the 19th of October. These normally mild-mannered and retiring Rotarians from the Brisbane Club were moved by the scale and severity of the drought across Queensland and NSW to ask shoppers for donations for the Western Queensland Drought Appeal. 
John Smerdon and Cameron Gibson on the job at the booth.
Over the three days, in excess of $1150 was collected. This was added to cash donations from members and the total raised will be matched 2:1 from the Rotary Club of Brisbane's charitable foundation and donated to the Western Queensland Drought Appeal. Funds donated to the Western Queensland Drought Appeal are loaded onto pre-paid debit cards or vouchers and distributed directly to landholders in western Queensland, for them to spend on personal needs in their local communities. This keeps the money in the region, allows landholders to choose how they spend the money, and gives local businesses a boost with the extra trade. In this case funds will be distributed near Longreach, one of the many areas that has not had a break from the recent rains in eastern Queensland and NSW.
Endoscopy training of rural GPs at the Princess Alexandra Hospital is already starting to make a difference to rural Queenslanders. The project was initially the brainchild of RCoB's Professor Gerald Holtmann who also happens to be the Director of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the Princess Alexandra Hospital.
 Dr Jennifer Wharton from Thursday Island at the PAH Rural Endoscopy Training Centre observed by Prof Gerald Holtmann, Director of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, PAH and Dr Derek Holroyd from Proserpine.
Gerald was concerned about the amount of travel required of rural patients who generally need to travel hundreds of km to regional centres for endoscopic examinations. This is not a problem that can be solved simply by spending money to locate equipment in far-flung locations. Trained personnel need to be on-hand to perform the procedures, and they just are not available in rural areas. Gerald brought a proposal for the training of rural generalists in endoscopic procedures to his Rotary Club, who agreed to seed-fund a start-up project to the tune of $20,000 in collaboration with the Princess Alexandra Foundation and Queensland Health.
Rotary Around the World
Healthier lives ahead for South Pacific children

Rotary’s Give Every Child a Future program vaccinates 100,000 young people

At convention find breakouts tailored to you

Take away bold ideas about how to improve your club experience, your community, and the world from breakout sessions at the Rotary convention in Singapore.

A labor of love

Supported by a Rotary Programs of Scale award, an initiative in Nigeria seeks to remedy the country’s high instances of maternal death

Heat is on for urban planners

As temperatures rise, cities transform heat islands with tree cover, “cool pavement,” and other adaptations.


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