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Rotary Club of Burnie News

Mark Viner – a new BAFC

This week, the club welcomed Mark Viner (seen here, centre, with Secretary George Austin and President Themba Bulle) as Guest Speaker. Mark is the Executive Manager of Burnie Arts & Function Centre (BAFC) and he talked about the Burnie Arts Live Performance Season 2022 and the reimaging of BAFC.

Mark graduated M.A. in History and History of Art at Cambridge University in 1987. He has extensive experience and achievements in the Art & Cultural industry. 

He talked about the “Human Nature – People Get Ready Again 2022 Reboot”, “Leonard’s Beautiful Pictures” and the classic musical – “Mamma Mia” by the Burnie Musical Society.

He said that since the 1970s, BAFC has served the local community as an event and performance space, as well as an annual performing arts centre for the state, national and international artists. Despite the high utilizing rate of 5,000 visitors per week, there is still an inadequate cultural attraction at Burnie. Renovation of BAFC is to start in late 2022, the aim being to create a multifunction area for the local community; a regional gallery, museum, café, retail stores and possible indoor markets may be incorporated alongside vibrant live performances and a wide variety of community events.

Mark said his team is currently focusing on the visitor’s experiences, but he welcomes open discussion.

Heather Chong – Tas. Rotary District Governor

 

 

DG Heather visited Burnie Rotary Club on November 15. She is seen here with Senzeni Bulle, wife of President Themba Bulle.  

Heather said:

Our district, D-9830 has just over 1,100 members. If the number drops below 1,100 we can be required to amalgamate with a Victorian Rotary District. Thus, I am trying to ensure we end up with a net two new members per club. Then, having got new members, we must realise the need is to ensure that they want to stay in the club.

The District Conference will be in Hobart in April 2022. We will be offering ‘Home Hosting’ in an effort to reduce costs for members who don’t live in Hobart.

Finally, let’s focus on the Homeless: Think what your club can do.

Australian Rotary Health

On November 15, Burnie Rotary Club welcomed the Chairman of Australian Rotary Health (ARH), Kevin Shadbolt, to our meeting. Earlier in his life, Kevin served as District Governor of Rotary in Tasmania – on two occasions!

In accepting on behalf of ARH a donation of $59,000, which came from the estate of Russ Radford (a former Somerset Rotarian) Kevin said “every cent received in donations to ARH goes towards medical research.”

Kevin explained that ARH is currently funding 40 research projects aimed at combating mental health issues and a further 50 dealing with other, general health issues. For many years, ARH is now focusing on the mental health of children, because it has been found that a high proportion of people who are diagnosed with mental health issues in older age, showed symptoms of mental illness already when they were teenagers.

See www.australianrotaryhealth.org.au  for more information (or email admin@arh.org.au )

Claire Griffiths – RCS Graduate

Claire has a five year old son and a nine week-old daughter (see Post of Sept. 3rd below). Her graduation from the Rural Clinical School (RCS) is only a few weeks off. Claire  said:

  • My family home is in Burnie and  I certainly intend to live and work on the North West Coast, even if I have to leave for a period of time. In January, I will start as an intern on the Coast.
  • I’m a palawa (Tasmanian Aboriginal) woman, and the entry pathway to university that I used is called the ‘Aboriginal entry Application Process’. During my third year at Hobart, a few of us were able to move to the RCS at Burnie, ahead of the usual intake at the start of the fourth year.
  • I have played many ball sports, especially rugby, touch football and “Aussie Rules”.
  • During my studies, I went on a cultural exchange to USA and investigated Native Indian medical concepts.
  • During my course, I surveyed the potential for “Social Prescribing” in Tasmania. Social Prescribing enables GPs, nurses and other primary care professionals to refer patients to a range of local, non-clinical services to support the health and wellbeing of these patients. I found ‘rural’ GP’s here were mostly in favour of these concepts.  
  • I seek to be a rural generalist GP, that is with extra skills which I can apply when circumstances require, such as to work in an emergency department or to be able to carry out certain surgical procedures. As well, I see it as important to have skills that would complement activities in whichever local community I might find myself working.

Mental Health

Peter Truman (below, seen at right with President Themba) was the Guest Speaker at our “Hat Night”, which aims to raise funds for Mental Health Research.

Peter trained as a Psychiatric Nurse in UK and worked there as well as in New Zealand and Brisbane before arriving in Tasmania in 1991.

He said that since the 1990’s, there has been an emphasis on moving mental patients out of hospital (or ‘asylum’) and into the community, made possible by having a better understanding of the needs of patients and availability of more specific medicines.  An emphasis on early treatment has been important.

Peter said: – Bipolar patients can cope well outside of hospital care, though occasionally they will need some help; – Paranoid Schizophrenia patients comprise a very small number of all mental patients, but Peter has found these to be the most difficult to deal with; –  Clinical Depression patients have a limited ability to manage themselves, though they are easy to medicate for; –  Reactive Depression  cases appear to be increasing, possibly due to the impact of government impositions in the fight against the Covid virus; lockdowns, job losses, income loss, etc..Peter works within CAT – a part of the Mental Health Services system – located in Burnie and comprises Mental Health Nurses; Clinical Psychologists; Peer and Carer workers; Social workers; Occupational Therapists; Psychiatrists, and other specialist medical staff.      

To a question from the audience, Peter agreed that the number of young people exhibiting mental disorders is definitely increasing. He sees this as a consequence of how our society has changed – for the worse, he reckons – over the past thirty or so years. These days, young people have grown up believing they can have everything immediately and it is scandalous how easy they find it to incur huge debts – without limits!

“Get Brassy”

Allan Jamieson writes: “I was privileged to attend the Get Brassy! concert at Leighland Christian School on Friday, 8 October as a representative of the Rotary Club of Burnie. The performances by the young children – some of whom were shorter than their instruments! – were to the credit of everybody concerned, with special mention to the assistance offered by the City of Burnie Brass Band.

The students began by playing plastic instruments , then just two days before the Friday concert, they were handed proper brass instruments. They even showed that after only one lesson, they could drill behind Drum Major , Rotarian Wayne Richards and follow Wayne’s Mace signs.

I have never tried to learn to play an instrument, let alone to read music, but I came away feeling that at my age (81) it might not be too late to start. Those young musicians had received less than 20 hours of tuition, yet their skill and confidence could not be denied!”

 

Future Rotarian?

In 2010, Burnie Rotary Club began offering a two-year scholarship to students undergoing their final two years of study at the Rural Clinical School in Burnie. Students were invited to apply and a team of Rotarians then chose the student they felt would be most deserving of funding from the Club.

Claire Whiteway was our selection in 2020 and she has done well in her studies. Claire has also been busy outside the school, having married and – recently (August 26) given birth to a daughter. Claire advised the Club that Scarlet Eva Jean Griffiths weighed 6lb 5oz, is 45cm in length, and has a head circumference of 34cm.

On August 31, Claire wrote: “I successfully passed my final exams two weeks to the day before I had her. I’m now writing up some research from home with a couple more weeks of placement to complete in October.”

Burnie Rotary Club is proud to have had Claire as an Honorary Rotarian for the past two years and we look forward to meeting Mum and Daughter soon.

Wayne Richards – who am I?

[Wayne became a Burnie Rotarian a little over four months ago. He was invited to tell us about himself.]

          My parents were living at St Mary’s when I was born, even though I was born in L’ton. We moved to Latrobe for a short while, back to St Mary’s, and in the 1960’s we moved again when Dad became the Child Welfare Officer here.  As I grew up, I was in Cubs and Scouts and I became an early student at Hellyer College.

           I played hockey and ran in  middle and long distance running events. Of course, I played football too, though I eventually focussed on being a boundary umpire; “the older I get, the better umpire I reckon I was”.

          Out of curiosity, I attended the local brass band hall. A bloke there would hand out an instrument and I was given a trombone. Later I was in an Army band. In 1988, they played at the Anzac ceremony and I stood very close to Queen Elizabeth when she came to Tasmania. I was in the band as well when we supported a 400-voice choir in front of the Pope at Elwick Racecourse.

          My first job was with Burnie Council, but I soon left. In 1977, I joined the Burnie Fire Brigade, though I could not envisage aiming for a career in the Fire Service, so I changed and joined the State Emergency Service, in which I reached the Regional Manager position before  taking retirement.

          Along the way, I competed in car rally events using my own cars; I chose to navigate while friends drove. That way, we wrote off my cars after they rolled over or hit things. I became a steward accompanying the race cars – including the Round Australia Rally that started and ended in Adelaide  – 18,500 km.

Hon Leonie Hiscutt MLC – Guest Speaker

Leonie spoke to us mainly about her early life – before politics. A ‘tradesman’ farmer, she joined the Army Reserve and gained experience in driving heavy trucks. What’s more, Leonie also has a gun licence, a motorbike licence, a chainsaw licence, a forklift licence and can drive a tractor with ease. 

Her father-in-law handed over his stock-buying business to Leonie; she attended stock sales in all parts of Tasmania. With her husband, Leonie was a poppy grower and, later, she was President of the Central Coast Chamber of Industry. Not many politicians, male or female, could boast of that “c.v.”!

Leonie was elected to the Legislative Council in 2013 and continues to serve there.

Leonie is seen at left with Rotarian Nigel Morgan

Leonie Hiscutt MLC with Rot'n Nigel Morgan

President Themba – As he really is!

You might have noticed from previous posts on this website that our President is usually in a photo or two. On July 24 (Saturday) he let his guard down while at a birthday party for a former Rotarian in our club (who had joined a new Rotary club).

 In fact, Themba went all the way back to his childhood days. We just thought you might like to know this.