On July 7, the 2022 Presidents' Changeover for the Rotary Club of Daylesford took place at the Convent Gallery, Daylesford. Attending were outgoing Rotary District Governor, Dale Hoy, Khurram Khan, incoming Assistant District Governor for the Calder Cluster of Rotary, Outgoing President, Pat Groenhout, Incoming President, Terri Oprean, and a multitude of Community Partners, Daylesford Rotarians and partners and guests.
You can read the addresses of the Outgoing and Incoming Presidents, which outline Club activities and success of the previous year, awards presented to Daylesford Rotarians and future direction for the Daylesford Rotary Club by clicking on the Read More button below.
Daylesford Rotary thanks Tina Banitska and the staff of The Convent for hosting the event.
Photo: Incoming Rotary Club of Daylesford President, Terri Oprean (left) with Outgoing President, Pat Groenhout, at Convent Gallery, Daylesford
Outgoing Daylesford Rotary Club President, Patrick Groenhout - 2021/2022
Before we get started tonight, it’s my pleasure to invite Dale Hoy, outgoing District Governor, to provide the Rotary Invocation. Dale has been a steadfast supporter of the Rotary Club of Daylesford and, with Maureen, a pretty regular visitor as well. We are very pleased that Dale and Maureen have been able to make it tonight and I’d also would like to congratulate Dale on his year as District Governor.
I’d like to extend a very warm welcome to our guests this evening, including Brian and Roberta Nash, Jim and Norma Foster of the Daylesford Foundation, Fiona Robson, Khurram Khan, incoming Assistant District Governor for the Calder Cluster of Rotary, Margaret Hodge and Melanie Tudball from the Daylesford Community Bank, Michelle Clifford from the Community Opp Shop, Robyn Rodgers from the Hepburn Swiss-Italian Festa, Andrew Nuske and Alicia Kay of Verey Funerals, and Bronnie Scarffe. Brian, Roberta, Andrew and Bronnie are of course former members of the Club.
It's been a pleasure to represent the Rotary Club of Daylesford as President over the past year. It has certainly been interesting. While we didn't experience the same extent of lock downs as the previous year, we did have some, which were then compounded by a steady stream of members actually getting the plague! But really, that’s no different to anywhere else.
However, despite all that we've managed to hold our ground and even had a few wins. To highlight some of those briefly:
  1. We completed the Dharma School meditation garden.
  2. We held a very successful disability awareness evening attended by nearly 50 community members
  3. We managed to scramble together a live art show with not much notice and without losing money on it, also starting the process of evolving it and working with the Swiss- Italian feta successfully.
  4. We helped kick-off the Wombat Christmas Tree program
  5. We provided financial support to Newlyn Primary School, the Hospital Master Plan, Sprout, Days for Girls, Shelter box for Ukraine and Creswick Scout Hall and We supported a local student to attend the Defying the Drift course.
  6. The farmers market has continued successfully and is set to become a real feature of the town in coming years, as well as a great fundraising opportunity for Rotary.
  7. We didn't make heaps of money but we didn't really go backwards either - not a bad effort given the challenges.
So, I would like to take this opportunity to recognise my Rotary colleagues for their significant efforts during the year that's passed.
Now, on to some awards.
First, even though none of them could make it tonight, I'd really like to formally recognise the support and contribution of our three market angels Shirley Harrington Maria Toomey and Glenda Rozen.
Second, community groups don't work without the quiet achievers that turn up to everything, are always reliable and rarely complain. We're lucky to have a few of those. But I really want to acknowledge one member who fits that bill and has been an enormous support to me this year, as well as a good friend. I was going to call this award the Al Dente Sausage award for club commitment, given this member's prowess on the tongs. But that would be a disservice to Alan. So I have called it the Club Stalwart Award.
Finally, to the Bing Baker award. I don’t think this will come as a surprise to anyone. I’d like to invite Tim Cansfield-Smith up. Over the last couple of years, Tim has taken on the Daylesford Art Show and, despite the enormous challenges of trying to organise such an event amongst lock-downs and uncertainty, has delivered first an online and then a live art show, while at the same time dragging Rotarians and friends of Rotary along for the ride which is his vision to evolve our humble show into a real cultural event. But not content with that, Tim has also actively taken on the role of champion of change in the club across a whole range of activities, whether it’s developing a workable budget, or his focus on club function and governance. Tim is the epitome of the iron fist in a velvet glove. Always with a smile, always the gentlemen and ruthless in achieving what he sets out to do. Sometimes the glove even comes off and we are left with just the iron fist! Tim, you are highly regarded by your Rotary colleagues. I’m not sure how we will cope while you’re gallivanting around Florida and Canada with Bruce for the next few months but we will certainly be looking forward to your return.
(Toast to the award winners)
Finally, it's my pleasure tonight to introduce our incoming Club President, Terri Oprean.
President Terri Oprean - 2022/23
Thank you everyone for coming to night to celebrate this occasion with Pat and myself.  After the last 3 years it is wonderful to have so many fellow Rotarians and friends of Rotary gathered together.
I wanted to particularly thank Dale Hoy and his wife Maureen and Khurram Khan, for making the time to celebrate with us. Thank you.
I also want to acknowledge, the members of our community who are here tonight with whom Daylesford Rotary have partnered on different projects to help make a difference in our community. It is also fabulous to see past Rotarians here and of course my son Rhyce who has come to support his mum.
But the people that I am most proud to be sharing this evening with are the members of our Daylesford Rotary Club. We are an amazing club, who punch above our weight when it comes to getting things done and helping the community
So how did I become part of this Rotary Club…what made me want to be part of a service club?
Growing up my parents were members of the Local Lions Club and at high school I joined the Interact Club. Back in those days we were allowed to visit people in their homes so after school a group teenagers  would visit the elderly living nearby and do odd jobs, like a bit of weeding or shopping, but mainly a bit of social interaction…perhaps Daylesford Secondary Colleges could set up an Interact Club and they could come and help do odd jobs for this this older person! 
Before moving to Daylesford I was a secondary school teacher. I taught Health and Human Development at a private girls school in Melbourne.  Part of the course was looking at how to improve the H & HD of Australians and then looking further afield people in developing countries. Identifying what makes a project sustainable, affordable and equitable.
All part of what we look for as Rotarians when we engage in a new project.  The girls I taught were amazing, very empathetic and acknowledged that it is pure luck as to where we are born and the privileges that entitles us to. The course helped to remind me and them the support needed from us to those in developing countries. I have faith in our young people of today to help to make our world a better place.
Another influence was a good friend and colleague of mine, Felicity Fraser. After visiting Timor Leste she set up an NGO, which is no mean feat,  to work with women and children. I became involved with many successful events to raise funds and awareness for the GOYA Foundation (short for get off your ass: Felicity had a sense of humour).
So when I first moved to Daylesford 4 years ago next week, I wanted to become part of a community and an organisation where I could get involved with like-minded people who are trying to make a difference no matter how small, to lives of others. I didn’t know anyone in town, except my son and he didn’t want his mother hanging out with him all the time, and no one was going to come knocking at my door, so I had to get off my ass and do something.
I saw an ad in the Local newspaper for a Rotary open night to come along and see and hear what Daylesford Rotary was about. From that first night, thanks to Bronwyn Scarffe, I was impressed with the passion of everyone in this club who are willing and prepared to give of their time and skills to help others.  Joining this club has not only about helping others it is also importantly been about making friends and feeling welcomed as part of a wonderful group and organisation. So I thank my fellow club members for making me feel very welcome and now accepting me as your President for the next 12 months.
After the last 3 years where it has been so difficult to hold regular meetings, fundraise and run social events our club should be proud of what we have been able to still achieve during this time. And we are particularly grateful to our outgoing President Pat.  He stepped up to take on the job, when we were still experiencing lockdowns and not sure what the year ahead would look like. Our membership was dwindling and morale was pretty dismal.  But Pat took on the role with humour and patience and we all truly thank him for keeping our club cohesive and well directed under very difficult times.  So thanks Pat.
So what lies ahead…?
Hopefully no more lockdowns…And we can begin to have some continuity with regular meetings and gatherings. We have a number of ongoing projects that we are involved with that will keep us busy, including the monthly Farmers Market and of course the Daylesford Art Show over Melbourne Cup weekend.  These two projects are major fundraisers for our club, as well as raising our profile in the community.  Days for Girls is another ongoing project sponsored by our club, that provides reusuable menstrual products for young women.  We are planning on having 600 kits ready to be sent to refuges in September.
A new and exciting project that we are happy to be working on in partnership with The Men’s Shed and the Bendigo Bank, is the Christmas Wombat Tree Project. Daylesford will have Christmas Decorations this year!
Apart from these projects and others that we will support over the year, my vision for the next 12 months is to foremost strengthen our club fellowship and friendship and then IMAGINE what we as a passionate group can achieve.
No idea is too small, and from small things big things grow.
Looking forward to a memorable 2022/23 Rotary year.
Thank you everybody.