Talk by DG Martin Parnell

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The annual tradition of a visit from the District Governor continued at Rotary today, as our newly installed DG Martin Parnell, of the Rotary Club of Cochrane, joined us by ZOOM.  Martin was introduced by Assistant Governor Dan Kammerer, who was "pitch hitting" for AG Keith Walker.
AG Dan introduced Martin Parnell, a long term Rotarian from the RC of Cochrane, married to Sue, with 3 children and the 3 "best" grandchildren.  Martin left the mining industry after 25 years, but he certainly didn't "retire".  He has had a long term personal project in terms of a "Quest for Kids", and has run a number of overseas marathons, completed a 250 marathon in one year task and has raised over $1.3 Million dollars for the organization "Right To Play".
 
Martin is an author, with his latest book coming out this year, and has been a long service Rotarian.
 
Martin began his talk with a land acknowledgement for District 5360, and spoke about the transition from a "virtual" world to the "new normal", which might not look quite like the normal we left 18 months ago.  He stressed that we need to be flexible and adaptable in Rotary, especially this year as we move back to "in person" meetings.
Martin talked about an African proverb, " if you want to go fast, go alone...and if you want to go far, go together".  He liked that image, because as Rotarians when we are together we can go a long way.
 
Martin spoke about his focus on the Strategic Plan of the District, the "Family of Rotary" and his three special initatives.  He mentioned "Move for Polio", and reminded everyone that donations to the campaign are matched 2:1 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.  He spoke about Wed March 2, 2022 which will be Rotary Day of Service, with an emphasis on empowering and supporting girls and women.  His third special promotion was the 2022 District Conference, a one day event in Cochrane on Saturday May 14, 2022.  They are hoping for 400 participants, and the charity partner that day will be Shelterbox.
 
He asked some questions of the club and answered a few questions from the group.  We look forward to an exciting year Martin, thanks for visit!!
Talk by DG Martin Parnell Dave Panabaker 2021-07-26 06:00:00Z 0

Meeting News

Posted on Jul 26, 2021
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Guests:
  • Our 2021-2022 District Governor, Martin Parnell of the Rotary Club of Cochrane.
Club Draw:
  • No draw this week.
Minute People:.
  • Gail Halderman, did a minute on the upcoming Rib-Fest.  He confirmed that the Rotary Rib-Fest is a go, for August 6 - 8.  The date change was a surprise this weekend, and alternations to the advance publicity are taking place today.  Planning is underway, volunteers will be needed and there may be a walkup area for eating as well as a drive through.  Gail has sent out requests for sponsorship, primarily by businesses who will get signage and media (social and radio) advertising for helping out.  If you have that weekend available please set aside some time to help out.  Gail is particularly interested in the volunteer recruiting, and Melanie Harty mentioned she and Community Service could help with that.
  • The next Rotary bingo is Thursday evening, July 29th, and the team is full...thanks to everyone!
  • Gregg Martin advised that our August bingo has been moved to Wednesday evening, August 4th, to avoid conflict with Rib-Fest, and Casino  That is two bingo's in a week, so jump up and volunteer for one or the other.
  • Doug Fleming mentioned that the Rotary Centennial History document is now published and printed copies are available for $20.00.  An electronic copy (the digital file is very large) will be available on a flashdrive if there is enough demand.  An email will go out this week and the printed books available for purchase at the next "in person" meeting on Monday August 9th.
  • Ken Zoller advised that our next casino will be August 21 and 22, and all the volunteers have stepped forward,  Great work all, thanks.
  • Clubrunner has a series of learning webinar's starting this week.  Check this link to see if any could help you navigate our club and website tool.  https://site.clubrunner.ca/page/changeover-training 
  • For those who are interested in learning about our indigenous neighbors, Dan Kammerer sent along a free course, sponsored by BMO which is used in their internal training and provided through the First Nations University of Canada.  The course is free until July 15, and can be accessed through this link.  https://www.fnuniv.ca/partnerships/reconciliation .  As well, a much more comprehensive course, titled "Indigenous Canada" can be accessed through the University of Alberta.  It is also free, and can be found here. https://www.coursera.org/learn/indigenous-canada . 
  • Dave Panabaker also announced that a blend of "in-person" meetings and "ZOOM" meetings are planned for July and August.  Currently August 9th and 23nd are booked at the MH Lodge, WATCH for attendance invitations as we work with the MH Lodge to reopen things and have personal meetings.  An email is out, looking for greeters at this meetings.
  • Dick Bide advised that he has pie cherry's ready for picking, please come by and help clean out the tree.
  • If you have photos or a story to include in the Weekly News, please submit it to Dave P and we'll try to publish it.
Birthdays: August
  • Wayne Chesley           August  4th.
  • Terry Partis                  August  5th.
  • Ken Feser                   August   8th.
  • Gregg Martin               August 25th.
Club Anniversaries:  July and August.
  • Glen Presley               6 years       July  27, 2015.
  • Kitt Brand                   12 years      July  29,  2009.
  • Ken Zollner                 38 years     Aug    1, 1983.
  • Jillian Koch                   5 years     Aug    8, 2016.
  • Wayne Chesley           23 years    Aug   28, 1998.
Makeups:
  • No report.
Family of Rotary: (PLEASE KEEP ADOLF INFORMED ABOUT MEMBERS SO THAT INFORMATION CAN BE PASSED ON TO ALL IN THE WEEKLY NEWS)..
  • Fran Wahl advised that a small, graveside service is being planned for Herman, which will take place in Hillside Cemetery on Saturday August 21st, at 1:30 pm.  A reception will follow in Herman Wahl Memorial Park in Redcliff.  Please save that date.
  • The Rotary Club members send their best wishes to PDG Rick Istead, who is undergoing stem cell treatment in Calgary.
Meeting News Dave Panabaker 2021-07-26 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary "Drive-Thru" Ribfest 2021

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat is proud to participate in 2021 Rotary Rib-Fest again this year.  A big "THANK YOU" to Murray Chev Cadillac for allowing the use of their property again this year.
 
The dates have recently been confirmed as Friday August 6, 2021 (starting at 11:00 am) and running through to Sunday August 8, 2021 (finishing at about 7:00 pm).  It does take "serve" to a completely different place, but based on last year's wonderful ribs, they will "change lives"...so come on out and enjoy.
Rotary "Drive-Thru" Ribfest 2021 Dave Panabaker 2021-07-24 06:00:00Z 0

Special Meeting of the Music Festival Society

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President of the Music Festival Society, Milan Vujovic took the podium today and operated a Special General Meeting of the Rotary Music Festival Society.  The purpose of the meeting was to approve a set of updated and revised Society bylaws, which would open up membership in the Society to the general public.
After calling the meeting to order, Milan provided some background to the changes and there were a few comments and questions answered from the Project Team members.  After those were complete, on a motion made by Don Davis and seconded by Dave Panabaker, the revised bylaws were approved unanimously.  Anne Carrier, as the recording secretary for the Society, took attendance and confirmed that significantly more than a minimum quorum were present to approve this historic change.
 
The work continues, as new membership applications for the society were available at the meeting and the existing Society Board will begin recruiting interested parties from the music community.
Thanks were given to the Project team and to the existing Music Festival Society Board, for all the hard work that went into this project.  There is more work to do, but this was a significant step forward.
 
 
Special Meeting of the Music Festival Society Dave Panabaker 2021-07-19 06:00:00Z 0

Summary of the Meeting

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President Terry spent a few minutes speaking about the "Move for Polio" initiative, which has been created through District 5360 to support the End Polio campaign.
 
 
The campaign main page can be found by following this link. https://go.rotary5360gives.org/polio/Campaign/Details 
 
You can sign up yourself, any activity will do.  And you can share your individual sign up link, to get contributions from friends and family.
 
A specific question was asked, "Although you will get a charitable receipt, will Rotarians get Foundation Points when they donate."  Answer to the question is "Yes, when you donate you will be asked if you are a Rotarian and what club you belong to, that will be used to track your points"
 
Great fundraiser for Rotary's # 1 priority, the eradication of Polio throughout the world.
Summary of the Meeting Dave Panabaker 2021-07-12 06:00:00Z 0

Move for Polio

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President Terry Partis spent some time speaking to the club about a significant initiative that is going on within Rotary District 5360.
 
As everyone knows, the job to "End Polio" is Rotary's # 1 priority, everywhere in the world.  We need to get this done, both because the goal is definitely in sight and so we can go on to do more good work in the world.  Rotary District 5360, with PDG Dan Dorherty and his wife Marlene have come up with a fundraising project that works very well with DG Martin's "more than healthy" lifestyle.
 
The project is called "Move for Polio", in any way you can.  Set a goal on an individual basis, sponsor another Rotarian or just make a financial donation.  President Terry will be sending out invitations to join "Team Medicine Hat", and have your contribution counted.  Any activity qualifies, walking your dog, swimming, running, biking, working a bingo, Team Freewheel's outside work certainly qualifies.
 
 
We hope to celebrate the success of this project, at World Polio Day in October.
 
 
Move for Polio Dave Panabaker 2021-07-05 06:00:00Z 0

Presentations in the Park

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Newly Inducted President Terry Partis spoke for a few minutes about some of the priorities of his year, which begin with membership.  "Many hands make light work", and every new member we induct will add strength to the club and lighten the load for the rest of us.  He passed around two club photos taken over the past 15 years, and noted how much change there has been in our membership.
 
First, he assisted Keith Walker in the induction of his new Board.
Melanie Harty (President-elect) had a conflict and could not be present, and Peter Mueller "was a little late" and not present for the induction.  We forgave him, because he brought a new member with him.
 
Terry spoke about the "Move for Polio" initiative of our incoming District Governor Martin Parnell, so far 26 clubs in the District have registered a champion for their club and Terry is looking for someone to step to this roll in our club.
 
Terry also spoke about the District 5360 Indigenous Committee, which will be working on engaging the native community over this year.
 
Terry also spoke about the structure of meetings, as we go back to "near normal" in terms of COVID protocols.  He sees a mixture of in-person and virtual meetings, in the future, with at least one "hands on" type meeting in the community over the next few months.  Stay tuned, more information to come.
 
Terry was then able to turn the meeting into a great series of recognition for the efforts of Rotarians and others in helping our community.
First, the Rotary Club was delighted to recognize the amazing work of our Music Festival Executive Director Delynne Lorentzen, who was able to pull together a "virtual" Festival this spring and provide over 150 kids with the opportunityto "have a stage", and many 100's of others to watch remotely.  Great work Delynne!
Next new Rotarian Brent Secondiak was presented with a Paul Harris Fellowship by PDG Sandy Mackay.  Brent has been a force in our community as a senior member of the Police department and a worthy recipient of this honor.
Next PDG Sandy presented Bruce Shepard with his Paul Harris +1 pin, for his continued financial contributions to the Rotary Foundation.  Thanks for ths support of the Foundation, where we get the funds to give back to the community!
 
Presentations in the Park Dave Panabaker 2021-06-28 06:00:00Z 0

2021 Rosebowl Winner - Josie Hoffarth

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The Rotary Club welcomed Josie Hoffarth and her parents to our meeting this evening, and enjoyed a performance of "3 Preludes" by G. Gershwin. Josie was the winner of the 2021 Rotary Rosebowl, a unique competition in that the entire Festival was put on virtually and the Rosebowl was performed without an audience and judging was done remotely.  Josie was introduced by the President of the Music Festival Society, Milan Vujovic who described Josie as a "force", driven and determined.  She is passionate about music and dance, as well as being a golf and silver medalist at her studies.
"Sitting still" is not in her vocabulary and she will begin a degree in Arts at the Medicine Hat College in the fall.
Josie finished by thanking everyone in the Rotary Club for the opportunity to perform, for the operation of the Music Festival over the past 65 years and for finding a way to have the Festival during this pandemic.
2021 Rosebowl Winner - Josie Hoffarth Dave Panabaker 2021-06-21 06:00:00Z 0

Economic Development Presentation

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Lisa Kowalchuk, Executive Director of the Medicine Hat Chamber of Commerce to our meeting today.  Lisa was introduced by Mike Christie and joined us to talk about the COVID pandemic, it's impact on the local business community and how she perceives the business communities ability to bounce back from this trying year.
Lisa's presentation was titled "Economic Impacts, Outcomes and Opportunities for Southern Alberta in a Post COVID Economy".  Lisa began by thanking the student who helped her assemble the survey and statistics for the presentation, Rebecca Weiler (who joined us as a guest).  The report surveyed most of the Chambers members, talked about the impacts of the closures, and layoffs of the beginning of the pandemic and looked at the options that industries explored to maintain cashflow and employment.
 
The entire report is available at https://growthzonesitesprod.azureedge.net/wp-content/uploads/sites/1308/2021/04/Economic-Impacts-Report-Final-Copy.pdf and other information about the Medicine Hat and District Chamber of Commerce is available on the groups website https://www.medicinehatchamber.com .
 
Lisa spoke about the disruptions, and the various financial supports offered by each level of government.  She stressed that recovering businesses need price and cost certainty going forward.
 
She asked and answered a number of questions, and was thanked by Acting President Melanie.
Economic Development Presentation Dave Panabaker 2021-06-14 06:00:00Z 0

Review of the recent Club Satisfaction survey

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Incoming President Terry Partis, from his floating cottage near Kingston, Ontario joined the meeting and reviewed some of his preparatory work for his term July 2021 - June 2022.
Terry spoke first about his interesting experience driving across the prairies and Ontario, to get to both his clients and his boat.  The concept of checkpoints along the Trans Canada Highway is one thing we'll be happy to forget once the pandemic is history.  He thanked the 62% of club members (32 of 52) who responded to the Club Health Checkup, and explained that some of the comments and significant points would form the basis of his priorities for 2021-2022.  He broke the  talk into the Good/Attention/Needs Attention.
 
He spoke about the value of club culture, of communication between the Board and the club members, making valuable use of the meeting times and getting feedback from everyone.  He encouraged anyone who had not filled out the original survey to contact him by email or phone, if they wanted to express an opinion.
 
Under the heading of "Attention", he mentioned that engagement of all members, in some form of the Rotary world, and in the entire club is needed.  He wanted to make sure that new members have mentors, the mentors are known to all and that they perform a more active role in the instruction of new Rotarians.   He encouraged everyone to have a "MyRotary" account, to use the resources of "Rotary.org" to access the Learning Center, a great informative tool.  He wants to "change those things that aren't working" and to increase participation.He is looking for all of us to be "membership" champions, to promote Rotary within our friends and family.  New members, especially within younger, diverse sectors of the population would be wonderful.  Mike Christie is membership chair, and his committee could use all our support.
 
Under the heading of "Needs Attention Now", he listed four area's that he will need help right away.
  1. Perhaps the most important "immediate need" is someone to join the Board as the Director of Community Service, to fill the big shoes of Melanie Harty, as she moves into the roll of President-elect.
  2. He needs someone to champion new fundraising activities, someone who can lead a small committee to explore alternatives to our current fundraising activities.  Without funds, we can't do too much.  This someone willing to be a champion, but not necessarily a full Director with those associated time commitments.
  3. He needs a promotions and communication champion.  This person doesn't need to be a Board member, but he wants to keep communication open between the Board and members, promote Rotary within the community and increase our profile.
  4. He thanked  Ken Feser for responding to his call for help updating the strategic plan.  Ken will help facilitate additions to our existing strategic plan, to provide real goals, timelines and responsible parties for change.  There is room in this group to join Mike Christie and Ken Feser, on this project.
He thanked all of us for an "extended" 10 minute talk....and we all look forward to his year and some great things!
Review of the recent Club Satisfaction survey Dave Panabaker 2021-06-07 06:00:00Z 0

Interact Student evening

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The Rotary Club was delighted to visit with the young leaders of the Medicine Hat High Interact club on Monday evening.  Even if the visit had to be "virtual", it is always great to catch up with the students and find out what projects they have been involved with and what their plans for next year are.
 
The 2020-2021 President of the MH High Interact club is Ezekiel Salazar, who had each of the 8 other students introduce themselves and speak about why they joined the Interact club.  The club had a total of 15 members this year, and with COVID restrictions had to split it's meetings into two  separate times, to ensure social distancing.  Even with those road blocks, they have done some amazing things.
 
Ezekiel began by thanking the Rotary Club and it's members for the work at the Sea-Can Garage Sale in September of 2020.  That event, based on donations by Rotarians and the Interact students, raised $1,700 for the clubs activities.  The Interact Club also did a poppy campaign in support of the Legion on Remembrance Day, and helped participate in Operation Christmas Child, organized through Hillcrest Church.  They also did a number of Christmas cards to those staying at the Medicine Hat Regional Hospital over the Christmas season.
 
The club also did a public campaign to thank essential workers, titled "#MHSaysThankYou".  They encouraged schools to provide posters and cards that hung in many stores in the area.  They got support from schools all over the region.
 
As well, they participated in the CFSEA - Youth in Philantrophy program, and donated $1,800 to the MH and District Food Bank.
 
Many of the students, including those in the executive will be back next year, and they are already looking at a list of potential projects for 2021-2022.
 
After the presentation, the students were congradulated by PE Terry Partis on the great work and a special thank you to VP Sue Withers, our faculty advisor for many years.  Without that school based support, the Interact club would be virtually impossible to run.  We really appreciate all her efforts.  As well, PE Terry thanked Theresa Eisenbarth, the Rotary advisor to the Interact students who helps support their efforts and introduces them to all things Rotary.  In this very odd year, meetings were difficult and her role tougher to perform and we thanked her for her work.
 
It's always an uplifting meeting and we were all amazed at the great work, during a tough year, done by the Interact students!
 
 
Interact Student evening Dave Panabaker 2021-05-31 06:00:00Z 0

Membership Presentation - PDG Neil Berg

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed back Past District Governor (PDG) Neil Berg from the Rotary Club of Red Deer East.  Neil was the District Governor in 2016-2017 and has been President of his club twice. Neil has assumed many roles within his club and within the District, and he is currently the District Membership Chair. He is still actively working in wealth management for RBC and feels his retirement is "a long way into the future".
Neil is a man who claims he has no original thoughts, but he has come across many great idea's for attraction and retention in Rotary, and loves to speak about them.
 
The first key point he wanted to make was clearly identified in the Rotary International, and District survey's over the past five years.  The "onboarding" process for a new member is critical to keeping them engaged and interested through the two most vulnerable periods of membership, the six month interval and the two year interval.  Clearly identifying a new Rotarians passions and trying to support them are key, as well as mentoring them through the bizarre number of acronyms and abbreviations that make up Rotary.
 
He spoke at length about "Vibrant Clubs", how they both share a common purpose, have diversity of opinion and thought, and a meeting has a certain "buzz" about it.  He spoke about being accountable, as individuals and as a club to make our strategy's work and report on them.
 
He finished with some tactics around being successful and how being "welcoming", having engaging and relevant guest speakers and working on picking potentially good Rotarians, worrying about "fit vs fill" was important.
 
Neil took a few questions and was thanked by our club membership chair, Mike Christie
Membership Presentation - PDG Neil Berg Dave Panabaker 2021-05-17 06:00:00Z 0

Visit from Police Chief Mike Worden

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome the new Police Chief for Medicine Hat, Mike Worden to the meeting.  Mike was introduced by Director Mike Christie, standing in for our newest Rotarian, Inspector Brent Secondiak.  Mike C. was provided an extensive biography on Chief Worden and provided a great intro.  Chief Worden is an advocate of life long learning and was a long service employee with the Calgary Police force.
 
Chief Worden is a native (almost) Medicine Hat, his family moved to town in 1972 when he was 3.  His father was the pastor of Westminster United Church, and has remained in town in his retirement.
 
Chief Worden attended Central Park School, Alexandra Jr High and Medicine Hat High School, so he knows his way around the south east hill area. He has a sister in town as well, so moving back to the Hat allowed for much closer family connections.  He referred to policing as a "calling" and spoke of the need to have "consequences for actions". but that jail is not always the right answer.
 
He spoke about the frustration experienced in modern policing, and how it's easy to blame the homeless, those suffering from mental health or addiction issues.  He spoke about "harm reduction" as a part of a strategy to break the cycles that can cause crime or community unhappiness, and how those efforts need to work closely together.
 
He also spoke about the Medicine Hat Police Service "app" for those with smart phones.  It is a great way to be in touch with events in the community, and be "in the know" about police activities.  If you have a smart phone, and you know how to use it, please download the app (pictured below).  It is a great tool.
 
Above is the screen display, and the icon for the app.  Use it!
 
Mike was asked and answered a wide variety of questions about police issues, and we all thanked him for attending and his frankness about the role his officers must play.
 
We all wish him well, and welcome Mike and his spouse Clare back to Medicine Hat!!
 
Visit from Police Chief Mike Worden Dave Panabaker 2021-05-10 06:00:00Z 0

Adopt a Pond - SEAWA update

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Martha Gue to our meeting today.  She was welcomed by President Mark and introduced by Past President Margie Booyens.  Martha is a well known figure in our community who has done a great deal of voluntary work.  She is currently a member of the Grasslands Naturalists Society and a founding member of the South East Alberta Watershed Alliance (SEAWA).  Their website is https://seawa.ca.
 
 
Martha spoke about an idea which occurred to her because of the cancellation of displays for World Water Day, and how being restricted from doing the normal outdoor activities caused her to do some thinking.  She wondered who was "looking after" the ponds in town?  She discovered that there are 20 ponds in Medicine Hat, a combination of natural areas, park ponds and storm water retention areas.  She started an "adopt a pond" program, to help deal with invasive species, pick up trash and repair damage and engage families and friends in enjoying these outdoor areas.   The idea started on March 8th and all but two of the twenty ponds have been adopted.  The two remaining "orphan" are Southridge Community Park and the Stormwater Pond behind Candidan Tire.
 
She also spoke about the repair projects that SEAWA has been engaged in, along the riparian areas along the creek and river banks.
 
The work of SEAWA fits very nicely into the new 7th Avenue of Rotary Service, "Protecting the Environment".  The information that Martha provided will be forwarded to our Community Service Committee, for review and for a recommendation on some aspect that might fit well into our existing projects in the Community.  I suspect there will be more to discuss in the upcoming months.
Adopt a Pond - SEAWA update Dave Panabaker 2021-05-03 06:00:00Z 0

Business Meeting Notes

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There were several pieces of business done at the meeting today, starting with President Mark's comments on the planned tree planting in Rotary Centennial Park in Dunmore.  Because of COVID rules, the size of the work party's must be limited, so a block of time on Friday April 30th has been reserved, from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm.  Mike Christie will be sending out sign up sheets for everyone who can attend.
 
Community Service Director Melanie Harty explained the process, and provided some feedback on how the project had progressed.
As everyone will remember, during our Centennial year of 2018, the RI President Ian Riseley challenged every club to plant a tree for every member.  Our club believed we could do better than that, and because of the 100 year anniversary funded the planting of 100 trees in this new park in Dunmore.  The park is on the east side of Eagle Butte Road, north of Eagle Butte High School.  Hopefully it will become a valued part of the community in Dunmore and a lasting memorial to our Centennial.
 
Melanie also spoke about the work that the Community Service Committee has been doing, particularly on a large, meaningful project within Medicine Hat.  The group had been introduced to an organization named "SANARE"(formerly SARC), which is the Latin word for "healing", and the organization is a service provider to promote healing within sexual assault victims.  Their executive Director, Chris Johnson made a presentation to the Board of Directors on Tuesday evening, and because their work is focused on children, the subject matter was most distressing.  They are currently leasing a new facility to deal with almost 200 children annually who experience this trauma, and the opportunity for Rotary is to work on a welcoming lobby area, to make children feel at ease.
 
Although the project is not fully fleshed out, the Club was asked to approve the application for a District Grant to provide partial funding of this project.  A final approval will be brought before the club once everything is planned, but the District Grant must be applied for by Friday, or we miss our window for this year.  The club members present approved with a show of hands, proceeding with the application and were interested in hearing the presentation once the work is fully identified.
 
CS Director Melanie also spoke about the "Do Crew", the name for our project team from the club who will be going out to various locations and performing community service.  The group will be tasked with various projects, as COVID restrictions ease and those kind of work projects are possible again.
 
International Service Director, Terry Cooper provided a number of updates on our work overseas.
  • Our "Make 'em Smile" Denture project in Sri Lanka will be finished next month, and a total of 390 dentures will be fitted.  It is "on schedule and on budget", and a report will be coming to the club in due course.
  • Our participation in the "3D Limb Printing" project is moving along, there are five Calgary clubs and at least one in Ontario are of this team.  They are waiting to confirm the financing, after changes to the Global Grant program with Rotary International.  This work is also going on in Sri Lanka.
  • The "Tenderfoot School Kitchen" project, in Nairobi, Kenya which our club participated in this year is also moving along, Kitt Brand has received photos of the construction work beginning and the work is proceeding.
  • The International Committee is currently studying a large, multi club project in El Salvador designed to provide clean water and sanitary facilities to 500 Public Schools.
 
Terry is also the lead on "Team Freewheel" and he provided an update on recent donations of refurbished bikes, 8 to the Catholic School Division and 6 which are going to International Students at the MH College.  The group also was introduced to an organization named "Bike - Medicine Hat" who may provide other contacts, or perhaps so help at repairing bikes. The work has been enlightening and we are being more selective about the bikes that are being picked up from the MH Police compound.
Business Meeting Notes Dave Panabaker 2021-04-26 06:00:00Z 0

The "Top Ten" Reasons to get out of bed during COVID

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was delighted to welcome our District Governor Elect, Martin Parnell to the meeting today.  He will "take the reins" of the District on July 1st and will be back to entertain us again on Monday July 26th for his official visit to the club.
Martin provided a humorous and motivating talk about the serious side effects of the COVID pandemic, the physical and mental health of many people who have been effected by the shutdowns and restrictions.  DGE Martin provided us with his "Top Ten List" of reasons to get out of bed during the pandemic.  The talk was well received and hopefully will help all of us to soldier on and look to the good times down the road that will return.
 
MARTIN'S TOP TEN REASON TO GET OUT OF BED DURING THE COVID PANDEMIC
 
10 - Make Your Bed....
 
9 - Play a Game
 
8 - Take on a Project.
 
7 - Take a course.
 
6 - Go and do something "virtually".
 
5 - Get outside.
 
4 - Phone a friend.
 
3 - Set a goal.
 
2 - Help each other.
 
1 - Have a fundraiser.
 
and the bonus reason is to "attend a Rotary meeting, anywhere".
 
Thanks Martin, a great list and some wonderful stories for sure.
 
Doug Fleming said after the meeting that his number one reason to get out of bed was "to pee"....and can't we all relate to that too!!
The "Top Ten" Reasons to get out of bed during COVID Dave Panabaker 2021-04-19 06:00:00Z 0

Evolution of the Music Festival Society

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The project team working on updating the bylaws of the Rotary Music Festival Society and creating a Support Agreement between the Society and the Rotary Club for the next five years presented their work to the members of the Rotary Club.  The team consists of Anne Carrier, Mike Christie, Wayne Chesley and Dave Panabaker.
 
The team worked on the following Principles in it's work on the Festival Society.
  • All members of the Rotary Club want the Festival to be “successful and sustainable” as we make changes.
  • The Rotary Club wants to remain the Primary sponsor of the Festival and retaining the naming rights.
  • Rotarians wants to be involved - as Members of the Society, fundraisers, volunteers and sponsors.
During Strategic Planning workshops wth the Rotary Club in 2017 and 2018, as well as Planning Workshops for the Music Festival in 2019, it was clear that an evolution of the Music Festival, to be a publicly run, open society which would be responsible for the Festival was the goal of the club.  Some of this was due of course to the declining number of Rotarians in the club and the difficulty of staffing two operational groups.
 
Highlights of the Support Agreement
 
• A five year financial commitment, which the new Society can “bank” on and work their budget around.
• A commitment to discuss future funding prior to the expiry of this agreement.
• A commitment by the Rotary Music Festival Society to retain the name, in exchange for the financial commitment.
• A commitment by the Rotary Music Festival Society to a quality Festival, in keeping with past practice.
• A seat “reserved” for a Rotarian, nominated by the Club, to sit on the Music Festival Society Board, to work as a liaison with us as principal sponsor.
 
After significant discussion and a number of questions being asked, the following motion was called.
 
Moved by Dave Panabaker and seconded by Mike Christie; "Do the members of the Rotary Club support the proposal, of opening the Rotary Music Festival Society membership to the public, and with continued financial support from the Rotary Club, the movement of the operation of the Festival to this new public group?"
 
The motion was approved by the members present and will form the basis of the signing of the support agreement and revisions to the Music Festival Society bylaws.
Evolution of the Music Festival Society Dave Panabaker 2021-04-12 06:00:00Z 0

A New Rotary Year - PE Terry Partis

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From sunny, far off Fort Meyers Florida, President-elect Terry Partis took the stage and spoke about his journey into the role of President that begins in July 2021.
 
 
He started by thanking everyone in the club for the honor of servicing as Club President, and for trusting him with the responsibility.  He noted how he originally thought of himself as "a 20 year Rotarian but not an ideal member", but after listening to the incoming RI President Shekhar Mehta, Rotary Club of Calcutta-Mahanger, West Bengal, India he changed that description to "a member for 20 years but not an ideal Rotarian".  He showed the introduction of the theme for Shekhar's year at the helm of Rotary International, and the logo of "Serve to Change Lives".
 
His speech is on YouTube, the link is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tUEdRqyuJU4 
 
Terry has enjoyed the Leadership Training, although in-person training is always preferred, the use of breakout rooms and great speakers has really helped the learning stay interesting.  Terry spoke about the opportunity our current District Governor Mary Turner mentioned at her last visit, that COVID has allowed us the chance to review what we do, to change what needs to be changed and come back to in-person meetings with a fresh approach.
 
Terry also spoke about several of the quotations in the Shekhar's speech, and how "Service is the rent we pay for the space we occupy on this earth" was a meaningful expression of Rotary ways.
 
Terry thanked two Rotarians especially for helping get his year started on a positive note.  He thanked Terry Cooper for taking on the International Service Director role, and for organizing some joint projects with other clubs which will help us get restarted in International Projects.  He also mentioned new Rotarian Brent Secondiak, for helping him understand some of the Youth Advocacy Center issues and what may be a wonderful local project for Rotary..
 
He finished by reminding all of us of the challenges to all of us, "Bring One Member", "Empowering Girls" and the need for "Inclusion, Diversity and Equity".
 
 
A New Rotary Year - PE Terry Partis Dave Panabaker 2021-03-29 06:00:00Z 0

Update on International Service

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Terry Cooper, Director of International Service took the "stage" and did a presentation on the activities of the committee over the past year, as well as proposed the participation in a new project.  He began his presentation by speaking about the need to recruit new members of the committee over the past year, with changes in club membership.  He also spoke about some reorganizing of the committee records that has taken place, they now have a "Dropbox" site where records and information are stored and can be shared with the club,
He spoke about getting the group active again, about some updates on the "Make 'em Smile" project in Sri Lanka and provided a review about a couple of other projects that were proposed.  He also mentioned the Tenderfoot "Self Help" School kitchen and cafeteria project in the Kangemi slum, in Nairobi, Kenya.  Kitt Brand will provide a update on that project when she receives one.
 
Terry finished his update with the opportunity to participate in a unique project, "3D Limbs - Columbo, Sri Lanka".  The project came to the committee’s attention in February when they were following up on the Make Them Smile Dental Project with the Rotary Club of Capital City Columbo Sri Lanka.  The committee had a Zoom call with Paul Cahill of the Rotary Club of Calgary Centennial and Sri Lanka club members Stephnie Rodrigo and Supem de Silva. The  Committee decided to pursue this project given it was cost effective ($2000 US from club’s 2021-22 budget), and we would partner with 3 Calgary clubs and an Ontario club, and looked like a promising project that would have an immediate impact on children in the area,
 
The project involves providing the necessary seed money (scanners, software, printers, and training of local technicians) to set up the production artificial limbs below knee using 3D printers. The target audience would be youth under 23 from impoverished regions in Sri Lanka, and the technology allows for a better fit and alignment with the knee socket which needs adjustment every 6 months due to leg growth.
 
Based on a motion from Terry, seconded by Dave Panabaker, the club agreed to make allowance for this project in our 21-22 budget.  That motion was approved unanimously and we will all watch this project with interest.
Update on International Service Dave Panabaker 2021-03-22 06:00:00Z 0

NGSE Presentation by Juliana

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed our NGSE (New Generations Service Exchange) Participant to the meeting today.  Juliana Nishitani is 22 and a resident of Sao Paulo, Brazil.  She was introduced to the club by our local NGSE leader Edward Lipin, who began the meeting by speaking a bit about the idea of a "virtual" exchange.  He also introduced the NGSE program lead for District 4420, Sao Paulo who was with us as well and it was great to see Jany Hatanaka again at our meeting.
Juliana (who's nickname is Juba) spoke a little bit about the amazing difference for her in the size of the communities, Sao Paulo has over 12 million citizens.  She introduced her family and spoke about her experience as a scout and ballet dancer when she was young.  She also spent four months during high school on a student exchange in Barcelona, Spain.  She has obtained a bachelors degree in business, and concentrated on marketing and entrepreneurship.  She also loves to travel. She started a small business herself, dealing with clothing within her community but it was affected by the pandemic lockdown and she has suspended it's activities.
 
Although Medicine Hat is small, it certainly appealed to her and she would dearly love to travel north to visit with us in the future.  She was complemented on her English language skills and spoke about the emphasis on English during her schooling. After her presentation, she was asked and answered a number of questions, and Edward explained the balance of her "virtual" trip to Canada, which has about 7 weeks to run.
Juba was thanked by President Mark, who spent time with her reviewing the operations in their office last week.  He confirmed the invitation to visit us in the future when travel is practical.  Margie Booyens, who is the District 5360 NGSE lead, reminded members that other districts are looking for 18 - 30 year old individualas who are looking for a travel and educational experience.  She hopes to have a candidate for a return visit in the future.
 
Thanks for the presentation Juliana, we wish you all the best in your experience with NGSE and in your future endeavours.
NGSE Presentation by Juliana Dave Panabaker 2021-03-15 06:00:00Z 0

Visit with DG Mary Turner

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was delighted to welcome District Governor Mary Turner to our meeting today.  With the use of ZOOM technology, the DG is able to make second visits to most clubs and the meeting tools have changed the way that the role can be accomplished.  Although it would be great to meet in person, we understand that everyone needs to work at being safe.  It has been almost a year since Covid turned our world upside down and limited social gatherings, service projects and fund raising plans.
DG Mary was very happy to reconnect with everyone.  She promoted the theme for her District Conference "Navigating a New World", now happening virtually on May 1st.  The registration links are available at the end of the Newsletter or on the District 5360 website.  There are great speakers planned to address "Diversity, Equity and Inclusion", a Youth Panel, and current Mental Wellness issues.
 
DG Mary and President Mark spoke about the accomplishments of the club during this time, the adoption of new technology and the introduction of new events.  President Mark mentioned the Project Freewheel, and the introduction of the Rotary Ribfest on the weekend after the August long weekend. Also mentioned were the switch of the Rotary Music Festival to a "virtual" platform for the 66th year of the event, and the participation in several international projects with clubs from across the country.
 
Mary urged the club to imagine what we might look like when we finally get back together in person.  It's likely that technology will play a part in that as well.  We should review what we want for a "perfect" Rotary club, and this is an opportunity to start some things fresh and brand new.  She recommended an article from the recent Rotarian magazine, entitled "Lower the Temperature", about making a positive change in clubs and community.
 
Mary was thanked by President Mark for taking the time to visit with us and we all look forward to attending the conference.
 
Visit with DG Mary Turner Dave Panabaker 2021-03-08 07:00:00Z 0

Community Service Commitee update

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The Rotary Club received an update on the status of our Community Services Committee from Director Melanie Harty.
 
The committee has been hard at work documenting their purpose and process, COVID has given us a chance to catch up on some of this administrative work.  Melanie reviewed a number of issues for Rotarians and thanked those who have agreed to make up that committee.
 
The nine members of the Community Service team have a wide variety of experience both in Rotary and in Community Service, so that breadth of knowledge is a real asset.  The current members have all agreed to serve for an approximately 18 month term, and will shuffle a bit in June 2022.  The committee has agreed on a "Purpose" statement as follows.
 
"..to improve the quality of life through tangible projects and activities within Canada and normally focused on local, regional and provincial jurisdictions".
 
They will have five area's of focus, detailed on the attached slide.
 
A number of questions were asked and answered and Melanie was thanked by President Mark, for all this great work and for the projects now to come.  The first one of those may be our Dunmore tree planting, which is tentatively scheduled for May 2021, once the park development is proceeding.
 
 
Community Service Commitee update Dave Panabaker 2021-03-01 07:00:00Z 0

City of Medicine Hat Update - Mayor Ted Clugston

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The Rotary Club welcomed our honorary member, Mayor Ted Clugston to the meeting today.  He has recently provided the City, through an annual speech with the Kiwanis Club and the MH Chamber of Commerce, a "State of the City - 2021" updated and he was here primarily to answer questions and provide any clarification to the speech.  So to assist us in doing "our homework", he provided the link.  Several Rotarians commented what a thoughtful and interesting speech it was, complete with video's and poems! Here's the link to the whole presentation.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-u4z-TWgBLE 
 
Mayor Ted spoke about preparing the speech, how this one was different because the presentation was virtual, and how a discussion about COVID could wash over some serious concerns in the community and some great accomplishment by Hatters, business owners, the City and other organizations.  He divided the video into thirds, the first to underscore the damage that COVID isolation has been to the general well being of citizens and a significant mental health challenge.  He spoke about the rash of suicide and overdose deaths that have occurred in this area, and the ongoing work to address those issues.
 
 
He spoke about the work of Council, and staff.  The unusual situation that the pandemic has created and other needs, particularly the accelerated Financially Fit program, to deal with the impacts of commodity prices on our Gas/Oil and Electric Power businesses.  He talked about some of the great upcoming work, due to the Federal stimulus grants that will be taking place in 2021.  Some very interesting projects, such as expansion of the trail system at Echodale Park, a massive pickleball court project at the FLC, development at 603 1st ST SE and a canopy at Athletic Park, to name just a few.
 
In the remaining third he spoke about leading the team at City Hall through this time, thanked his staff and fellow Council members and spoke about deciding to run for mayor again in the fall of 2021.
 
He answered a number of questions on many of these issues, and we all thank for spending the time with us, to educate us and learn about what is going on.
 
 
 
 
City of Medicine Hat Update - Mayor Ted Clugston Dave Panabaker 2021-02-22 07:00:00Z 0

Brent Secondiak's Classification Talk

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It's always wonderful to hear the classification talk of a new Rotarian, as they join our Rotary family.  It's amazing the life experience of some of our members and we very much enjoyed the "Book of Brent" today, as Brent Secondiak told us his story.  He was born in Calgary, spent his primary school in Bassano, his high school years in Brooks and moved to Medicine Hat in 1999.  He has been with the Medicine Hat Police Service for 21 years, starting as a constable and progressing to his current position as an Inspector, in charge of their operations.
He's been married to his wife Debbie for 20 years, she is a local real estate agent and they have two children.  His father was a long service RCMP officer and his mother a nurse, so as he said "Service" runs in his family.  He has been actively involved in the community, helping with the MH Women's Shelter, Ducks Unlimited and several service organizations.  He enjoys watching football, staying in shape and gardening and showed off a few photos of his backyard garden.  He also is a dutiful dog walker, they have two small dogs, who have 3 arrests to their credit.  It appears if you go walking at night, you can find some interesting stuff.
 
He spoke of some meaningful incidents during his tenure with the police, and Brent spoke of the experience of the 2013 Flood, working in the Emergency Operations Center.  He was asked and answered a number of questions on a variety of topics and we all look forward to his continuing contributions to the community through Rotary.  Welcome to the club!
Brent Secondiak's Classification Talk Dave Panabaker 2021-02-08 07:00:00Z 0

Toastmaster - Rotary Partnership

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome three members of Toastmasters District 42.  Rotary and Toastmasters have formed an organizational partnership over the past few years, to develop training programs, leadership training programs, provide service opportunities and  general support each other.
 
We welcomed Bev Le Blanc, Program Quality Director in District 42, Dave Schaaf from Lethbridge and Tom Simpson, the President of local Circle T Toastmasters club in Medicine Hat.  Dave Schaaf shared some of the thinking behind the partnership and some recent activity, while Tom shared his Toastmasters experience.  All were introduced by Past President Margie Booyens.
Dave spoke about the nature of both organizations, and how the Rotary Learning Center, on MYROTARY, has adopted a number of modules developed by Toastmasters.  He also spoke about the Pathways program within Toastmasters, the first major re-write of programing in Toastmasters since it's inception.  He described a typical meeting, how it operates and what the objectives are for the participants.
Tom spoke about the usefulness of Toastmaster training and experience in his personal and professional life, and how it helps build confidence and skills in almost everyone who attends.  The local club meets each Tuesday from 6:30 - 7:30 via ZOOM.  When the pandemic restrictions are lifted, their face to face meetings will be returning to the Anglican church hall at 606 12th ST SW.  Any Rotary members are most welcome to drop in, there is no obligation and they can learn about the organization.
 
The link for the meeting can be obtained by emailing their membership chair Ryan O'Reilly at ryanoreilly@live.ca or himself at tom21@telusplanet.net 
 
A number of questions were asked and answered and more information on Toastmasters is available at http://www.toastmaster.org 
 
 
Toastmaster - Rotary Partnership Dave Panabaker 2021-02-01 07:00:00Z 0

Next Executive and AGM

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As is the custom of our club, the Past President, Margie Booyens introduced those Rotarians who have volunteered to serve on the Board and Executive for the 2021-2022 Rotary Year.
 
They will be inducted in late June, to take off for July 1 but those people introduced today were.
 
Past President - Mark Sorenson
President - Terry Partis
President Elect - Melanie Harty
 
Secretary - Doug Fleming
Treasurer - Gail Halderman
 
Directors at Large
Terry Cooper
Mike Christie
Peter Mueller
Dave Panabaker
 
Past President Margie advised that their are two spots available as Directors, should anyone wish to volunteer.  Not having enough Directors will hinder some of our service efforts, as four can't cover the work of six.
 
Terry Partis thanked Margie for all her work over the past three years in the President stream, and Margie thanked outgoing Director Glen Presley for his service over the past four years.
 
The second half of our AGM was a review of the Year end 2020 Financials with Treasurer Gail Halderman, who advised on our current financial position and how our reserves are sitting.
Gail spoke about the large spending in the previous year, related to the Rotary Centennial Trail along South Boundary Road.  All those expenditures were run through our club books, so some pretty big numbers accumulated in the Community Service column.  Gail advised that the club has approximately $30,000 of unrestricted funds in the bank, after the completion of transfers to the Music Festival for last year and  may need some of that money to fill in for our Club 1000 raffle if it doesn't sell out.  As well, our commitment to the "Dunmore Park" tree planting will use up some of those funds as well.
 
Several other projects, such as signage on Rotary Centennial Trail and other Service Projects will be affected by the availability of District Grants and a restoration of bingo.  It appears we will not have a casino in this Rotary year, so our funding will be tight.
 
Alternative methods of fundraising are being discussed by the incoming Executive and the Community Service team.  More information on that to come.
Next Executive and AGM Dave Panabaker 2021-01-25 07:00:00Z 0

Edward Lipin Classification talk

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The Rotary Club enjoyed a Classification talk and presentation from Edward Lipin, a new Rotarian this year.  Edward began his presentation by clearing his lap of cats, and making sure he could access his computer without fear of "attack" from the relocated feline.
He titled the presentation "the first 34 years of Edward Lipin", and did a wonderful job of sharing his life experience so far.  He spent most of his youth in Elora, Ontario, a beautiful mill town and tourist area in Southern Ontario.  He joined the military at age 19 as a Local Communication and IT Technician, and did a six month tour of duty in Afghanistan in 2009.  He spoke about some of his private sector jobs after leaving the military in 2013, and how he ended up in Medicine Hat as the Director of Technology for Medicine Hat School District # 76.  He has finished his MBA very recently with the University of Fredericton and now looks forward to a little more free time.  He and his partner Tara have 5 rescue cats, some Canadian and some American.  He enjoys squash, crossfit and NFL football (he's a Pittsburgh Steeler fan by marriage).
 
He talked about the impact of COVID on education, particularly the introduction of the online HUB, and how that might affect elementary school going forward.
 
A number of questions were asked and answered, welcome to Medicine Hat Edward and Tara, and we look forward to your participation in our club and our community.
Edward Lipin Classification talk Dave Panabaker 2021-01-18 07:00:00Z 0

Service Project updates

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Terry Cooper provided some updates and information on a number of service projects, both International and Local that are ongoing.
 
First, he provided an update on the status of the first batch of bicycles that have been donated by the MH Police Service.  With the hard work of Terry, Peter, Ken and Roger, as well as a number of others, the first shipment has been repaired or scrapped.  A total of 12 bikes went to the Salvation Army, 3 are going to the MH Public library and a further 4 or 5 will be lent out in the spring.
 
Second, Terry reviewed the progress of the "Make them Smile" program, of providing dentures to needy seniors in Sri Lanka.  This project was started early last year, with leadership from Sri Lankan Rotarians who were members of a recent Rotary Friendship echange but was suspended as the effects of the COVID pandemic hit Sri Lanka.  The work has started up again, and Terry provided some great photos of happy people smiling for the first time in a long time!
 
Terry then reviewed an opportunity to partner with several other Rotary Clubs around the world, and support the "Tenderfoot" Self-Help School in Nairobi, Kenya.  As they have expanded, they are in desperate need of kitchen facilities, and through a contact of Kitt and Dieter Brand in Ontario, we can provide a contributions to this project.  The total project is over $32,000 US, and with a generous donation from the Brands, we can access unallocated District Grant funds from 2020 - 2021 which are still available.  Terry Brekko moved, and Dave Panabaker seconded the club apply for the District Grant for this project and that motion was approved.  Kitt Brand will do the grant work for the International Committee and hopefully we will know in a few weeks if we can access the funds.
 
Service Project updates Dave Panabaker 2021-01-11 07:00:00Z 0

Introduction to Project Amigo

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Elly Contreras to our meeting today, to speak about Project Amigo, "Ending Poverty through Education" in Manzanillo, Mexico.
Elly was introduced by Kitt Brand, who made her acquaintance at the meetings of the E-Rotary Club One.  Elly joined Rotary in 1996 with the Rotary Club of Stoney Plain in District 5370.  Project Amigo aims to help end poverty amongst migrant farm workers and their family's, by encouraging and assisting children to finish school.  Many families in this area end up as unskilled farm labor, and their children are often captured by the same working environment, and only half finish middle school, and only 20% finish high school. Although Mexico has the 14th largest economy in the world, they also have one of the highest percentages of poor people.
 
Project Amigo aims to improve academic standards, and using a rewards based system provides material, scholarships and facilities to aid in further education.
 
The program has so far graduated over 80 students from university, often the first person in their family to achieve that level of education.  This year they had 26 Jr High grads, 22 High School grads and 8 university graduates.  Many of the university grads "give back" to the program to help keep it going.
 
A wonderful presentation, more information can be obtained by contacting Elly or visiting their website.
 
Introduction to Project Amigo Dave Panabaker 2021-01-11 07:00:00Z 0

Update on Team Freewheel

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As everyone knows by now, the Rotary Club and the Medicine Hat Police Service have entered into an agreement to allow the Rotary Club to gather and restore up to 30 bicycles from their compound and donate them to local charities and public facilities that might need be able to put them to good use.
 
Terry Cooper, Peter Mueller, Roger Roy and others have been hard at work on the first "batch", lots of challenges and hard work.
 
Terry Cooper provided an update at todays meeting, the group has received both the Police Dept bicycles as well as 8 - 10 donated by Rotarians and other interested citizens.  About half those have been worked on and the Salvation Army picked up a load from Terry's garage the other day.  Each bike has a bright "Donated by Rotary Club" sticker on it, and the team continues to work on the idea of a helmet accompanying each bike, especially kids bikes.
 
Once work can be done outside, and some of the COVID restrictions have been relaxed, hopefully more club members can join the repair teams.  Terry did thank Gravity Sports, who is allowing the group access to their "spare parts" bins, and being helpful in some of the repairs and parts.
Update on Team Freewheel Dave Panabaker 2021-01-04 07:00:00Z 0

Webinar with RI President nominee Jennifer Jones

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was thrilled to join our sister club in Lethbridge, and many other clubs across the District for a special speech and Q/A session with incoming Rotary International President nominee, Jennifer Jones of the Rotary Club of Windsor.  Jennifer will be the first female in the history of Rotary to lead the organization and all of us are thrilled both for her and that the honor of that step towards equality is being made by a Canadian.
 
 
Jennifer was introduced by Allan Friesen, the President of the Rotary Club of Lethbridge, who acted as the Master of Ceremony for this webinar.
 
Jennifer was accompanied on the webinar by her niece Olivia.  Olivia is a member of one of the "Early Act" clubs in southwestern Ontario and one of the jobs of the kids is to start the meeting with the 4 way test.  You are never to young to start taking on Rotary ways.  Olivia spoke about a plastic "reuse" project, as the Environment has become the 7th area of service within Rotary and one that kids very much get behind.
 
Jennifer spoke about a saying coined by her brother, also a Rotarian which is "to live in the kind of society you want, you have to help to build it".  Words to live, and serve by for sure.
 
Jennifer talked about her interest in eradicating polio, how that organizational structure might help in the fight with COVID and how Rotary's emphasis on "diversity, equity and inclusion" is also a theme she very much endorses.  She answered a number of questions and was encouraged in the "End Polio" fight by a donation of $70,000 from Rotary District 5360 Polio chair Marlene Doherty.
 
One other highlight of the webinar was the singing of "O'Canada" by the Uphill Both Ways school in Malawi.
Webinar with RI President nominee Jennifer Jones Dave Panabaker 2020-12-21 07:00:00Z 0

Project "Freewheel" begins

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The first bikes, in this case donated by Rotarians, were delivered by Peter Mueller and Terry Cooper to the Salvation Army on Friday morning.  Each bike will be sold with a certificate for a helmet and with a sticker showing the donation from the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat.
 
Thanks to Peter Mueller and Roger Roy for fixing them up, prior to delivery to the Salvation Army.
 
 
Next, watch for the donation of 27 bikes recovered by the Medicine Hat Police Service, and we are hoping these can also be delivered before Christmas this year.
Project "Freewheel" begins Dave Panabaker 2020-12-21 07:00:00Z 0

Medicine Hat Santa Claus Fund

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Former Rotarian Mike Hertz was on our meeting to talk to us about the Santa Claus Fund needs for 2020.
 
 
The Santa Claus fund is celebrating it's 34 year. In these years it has assisted some 18,000 families by raising some $5 million dollars that has been distributed to the needy families. Mike reviewed their mission statement. 
COVID -19 has presented a new challenge in raising funds to match an increased demand for help. Personal donations are only 75% of 2019 and corporate donations are reduced as no face to face fundraisers could be accomplished. He did give a list of major cash donors which include our club. There has been some new fund raising ideas ventured. "Coins for Kids' will provide income up to Dec 31/20. The Co-op is doing a tell ask. Dec 11-15 will have a "Santa Claus is coming to town" which is an ask for toys . Volunteers will pick up any toys that are donated. The Tigers hockey club is selling TIGER t-shirts with profits going to the Santa Claus fund. A new 50/50 draw may be added as the first one was sold out.
The current request for assistance in 2020 has come from 657 families (594 in 2019) representing some 1362 children ( 1232 in 2019). Now any individual/family in crisis will get some support right up to Christmas day. The Santa Claus fund provides assistance though out the year for any family in crisis.
 
If you wish to make that donation, please go to https://www.mhsantafund.com and press the DONATE button.  In the "notes" section please put a note like "2020 Rotary Club Pass the Hat", so the donations can be totaled by the fund.
 
Mike took questions and responded to each.
Medicine Hat Santa Claus Fund David Stalwick 2020-12-07 07:00:00Z 0

New Rotarian Project

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As an experiment in the 2019-2020 year, Margie Booyens asked the Rotary Board if she could challenge the newest Rotarians in the club with spend the "Presidents" $1,000 budget item on a project they all could agree on.  Today the club was treated to a wonderful discussion by three of our newest members, about three projects they investigated and about the one they collectively chose to support.
 
First, Rotarian Shalla Shaharyar and our guest Nicole Nemo spoke about Unisphere Global Center.  It is an organization that strives to "foster a vibrant community through global awareness and understanding"  Unisphere has three broad mandates; inclusiveness, social justice and environmental wellness.
Their project, which won the approval of all three Rotarians was phase one of a three phase campaign centered on the question, "What do you see when you look at me?"   The aim is to record a number of conversations within the community, from recent immigrants, disenfranchised and minorities, and gather their experiences.  It is definitely in line with Rotary policy on inclusion and diversity.
Peter Mueller spoke about the "B Youth" program and Igor Grujic talked about the "North Flats Neighborhood Association".  Everyone did really well, it was a very valuable exercise and we wish Unisphere every success in their task.
 
Rotary President Mark "virtually" presented the check to Nicole and Shalla, and we all look forward to their progress.
New Rotarian Project Dave Panabaker 2020-11-30 07:00:00Z 0

Conference of Rotary's NEW GENERATIONS SERVICE EXCHANGE program

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2nd INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE

ROTARY’s NEW GENERATIONS SERVICE EXCHANGE PROGRAM

21 and 22 November 2020

Over 700 participants from 52 countries attended the 2nd international conference of the NGSE program – virtually.

The program comprised speeches, interactive workshops, presentations, short inputs (including from Dieter and Kitt!) … and a message from RI President, Holgar Knaak!

One of the key conference messages was:

· Established in 2013, more education and marketing need to be done of the NGSE program at all levels, from International to Club levels

To promote understanding of the program among our Club members, I offer the following:

The NGSE is a program for young adults, 18-30 years of age, the main goals of which are:

· Job shadowing

· Service experience

· Immersion in the culture of the country, province, district concerned

· Promoting international peace, goodwill and understanding

· Personal growth, leadership development, widening the perspective of the participant

· The development of a new generation of Rotarians

If you would like to play an active role in this program at Club and or District level, please contact me!

Margie Booyens

Chair: District NGSE committee

Conference of Rotary's NEW GENERATIONS SERVICE EXCHANGE program Margie Booyens 2020-11-30 07:00:00Z 0

Evolution of the Music Festival

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The program today was a short summary of the activity of the Strategic Planning group for the Rotary Music Festival.  As everyone is aware, as the membership in our club both shrinks and gets older, handling the Music Festival exclusively within the membership has become extremely difficult.  After several strategic planning sessions last fall, a small working group of Mike Christie, Anne Carrier, Wayne Chesley and Dave Panabaker have been working on a plan for the "Evolution" of the Music Festival.
 
The first priority is to ensure the Festival is successful and sustainable.  As well, it needs to be properly funded, and that was also part of the discussion.  The Rotary Club has supported the Festival for 65 years, and wishes it to continue long into the future.  To do that, it is recommended that a new model for operation of the Festival be created.  This new model will take time, this is a multiyear project.  The Music Festival is now operated by the Music Festival Society which is made up exclusively of Rotarians in our club.  
 
To summarize the results of the 2019 Strategic Planning workshops
  1. A commitment of the Rotary Club to the purpose/ideals of the Music Festival long term.
  2. Longevity of the name "Rotary Music Festival".
  3. Ensure that any changes are designed to make the Music Festival sustainable and successful.
  4. Updates are required to: 
  • Governance Structure of the Society, including public members.
  • Fundraising models from the Rotary Club.
  • Simplification of the relationship between the Rotary Club and Music Festival.
      5. Broading of the fundraising to make use of grants, tax status and estate planning.
 
The conversation went on for most of the hour, but in general there was support for those goals and for including engaged public members in the society.
Evolution of the Music Festival Dave Panabaker 2020-11-23 07:00:00Z 0

Protection of Vulnerable People Policy

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The Rotary Club welcomed Doug Macdonald, Chair of the District 5360 "Protecting Vulnerable People" Committee.  Doug's presentation today was about the revised District Policy for protection of vulnerable people, and expansion of the Youth Protection Policy adopted by the District in 2014.
Doug has decades of experience with organizations that deal with vulnerable people, he just finished over 20 years with Scouts Canada.
 
He spoke about the reasons to adopted a new policy, those being
  • It's the law!
  • It's both Rotary International and District 5360 policy.
  • It's the right thing to do.
The policy is really designed to prevent harm, and when harm is suspected or reported, having a procedure to follow that will stand up to legal scrutiny.
 
The District Policy, and the job description for a Club Safety Officer (CSO), were circulated early last week.  The next step is to build an incident response team and both adopt the policy at the club level and assign someone to the role of CSO.  Training and certification of all volunteers needs to follow.  That training needs to be repeated every 3 years, to ensure it becomes part of our routine.
 
A number of questions were asked and answered, and Doug was thanked by President Mark.
 
Protection of Vulnerable People Policy Dave Panabaker 2020-11-16 07:00:00Z 0

Update on Canadian Humanitarian activities

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The club welcomed Danielle Skogen, the Program Development Director for Canadian Humanitarian and a member of the Medicine Hat Sunrise Rotary club.  Danielle started her presentation by expressing thanks for the opportunity to update us all and apologies from Rotarian Dick Northcott, who was trapped in Fort MacMurray by the weather and couldn't attend. Danielle has been in the International Development business for 9  years, although only this past year with Canadian Humanitarian.  Canadian Humanitarian is a local organized, international non-profit, with operations in Ethiopia, Malawi and Guatemala.
 
 
Canadian Humanitarian aims to break the cycle of poverty by starting with children, their education, nutrition and care.  They use an Educational Support Center model, to deal with many aspects of the children in their programs.
 
 
Danielle spoke about their "child centered program, support that improves the individual sucess of each child.
 
 
Canadian Humanitarian is having a virtual fundraiser, on Friday November 20th.  They would really appreciate the support of Rotarians, so please either donate, check out the silent auction items or buy tickets at the website above.  Danielle explained some of the COVID challenges and answered a few questions.  She was thanked for her great work and excellent presentation by Acting President Terry.
Update on Canadian Humanitarian activities Dave Panabaker 2020-11-09 07:00:00Z 0

Updates on 3 Rotary fronts

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The Rotary Club enjoyed updates and feedback on three area's of activity in the world of Rotary.
 
First, PDG Sandy Mackay spoke briefly about the World Polio Day event last week, and some of the history around polio and Rotary work to eradicate the disease.  He was grateful that a number of Rotarians took this opportunity to make a donation to the End Polio campaign and provided some thanks to those who helped organize the publicity around the event.
 
Sandy also spoke about Rotary Peace Fellowships, in particular a specific young man from Calgary who has taken his passion for service to the field with the Red Cross. The article can be found at this link https://www.uu.se/en/news-media/news/article/?id=15436&typ=artikel&lang=en 
 
 
Next, Rotarian Roger Roy spoke about the situation in Nayarit, Mexico, through a letter from Club Rotario Bahía de Jaltemba La Peñita, who he attends when he is able to escape winter to the Pacific coast of Mexico. The letter talks about the impact of the COVID infections, and the resulting economic shutdowns in their community.  Our club had sent them a donation from our club members in the summer, which amounted to 36,700 pesos which is being used for hot meals, medical supplies and food care packages.  The letter highlights some of the challenges they face and the current dire situation without their normal seasonal tourist trade.  The letter is signed: 
In closing, we again thank our Rotarian friends at Rotary Club of Medicine Hat
for your generous donation and support.
 
 
SERVICE ABOVE SELF!
 
 
Isidro Israel Hinojosa Guzmán
Presidente 2020-2021
Club Rotario Bahía de Jaltemba – La Peñita #81838/ D-4140
 
 
 
Thirdly, PP Margie Booyens announced that our three new club members, who were challenged to look at the community and determine a need they could support with a donation of $1,000 will be doing a presentation at our "in-person" club meeting on Monday November 30.  It should be an exciting meeting and an interesting discussion, try not to miss it.
Updates on 3 Rotary fronts Dave Panabaker 2020-11-02 07:00:00Z 0

End Polio Now

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WORLD POLIO DAY: Saturday 24 October

This year the mayor of Medicine Hat, Ted Clugston (also an Honorary member of our Club) is signing a PROCLAMATION around World Polio Day. The ceremony took place at City Hall on Friday 23rd.  In the meantime, we’re raising public awareness about Polio and Rotary’s involvement via posters in City Hall.  In attendance, Club Presidents Mark Sorenson, Clare Lindsay, Jim Marshall and AG Keith Walker

Learn how @Rotary & its partners have reduced polio cases by 99.9% since 1988: https://www.endpolio.org/donate

A polio-free world is possible, but we can achieve it only by taking action together. Join with @Rotary this #WorldPolioDay to @EndPolioNow.

Please donate now: https://www.endpolio.org/donate

 
 
End Polio Now Dave Panabaker 2020-10-22 06:00:00Z 0

Centennial History Document

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In the main part of our program, it was great to welcome back to the club PP Karen Blewett who provided an overview of the club history document project, which went back to our Centennial year planning group in 2015.  A team of Rotarians spent a considerable period of time piecing together the club documents, photographs and projects.  Karen made special mention of PP Margie Booyens, Doug Fleming, Uwe Krickhahn and Brian Rothwell for their time and energy, as well as a number of others.  The history document is about 130 pages in length, loaded with graphics and photographs and ties into the Rotary Impact work done during Karen's year.
 
The finished document is a professional looking production, and PP Karen made a specific mention of the value of having the talents of a graphic designer, who works for her husband Sean at Community Futures - Entre Corp.  Hayley Gibson's work makes the finished product something to be proud of, and something that will endure for decades.  PP Dave Panabaker presented Hayley (virtually) a small token of thanks for all her work.  The crystal will be delivered this week through Sean's workplace.
President Mark thanked Karen, and everyone involved, for the outstanding job.  Secretary Doug Fleming advised that the Rotary Club Board will meet on Tuesday October 20th and will be discussion what formats the publication will take and how much each will cost.  A sign up sheet will be created and members can pay for whichever format and how many they wish.
Centennial History Document Dave Panabaker 2020-10-19 06:00:00Z 0

Official Naming of Rotary Centennial Drive

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On Wednesday afternoon, October 7th the official "renaming" of 23rd ST NW to Rotary Centennial Drive was observed by the Medicine Hat Rotary Club.  This was one of our Centennial Projects, intended to provide a lasting name to a major arterial road, to recognize a century of Rotary Service in the community.  It took a while to complete, it had some bumps and hiccups but eventually it all came together and we were able to celebrate.
Thanks to Mayor Ted Clugston, and the other City representatives who were present to note this change.
Official Naming of Rotary Centennial Drive Dave Panabaker 2020-10-19 06:00:00Z 0

A morning at Prairie Gleaners

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A group of Rotarians worked a morning shift at Prairie Gleaners on Tuesday October 13, some cutting vegetables and others working in the bagging room.  Thanks to Dan Kammerer for organizing the work party and I'm sure many of us will be back.  It is a tremendous organization, taking what would become waste and turning it into valuable food.
 
The soup mix is sent all around the world, and the instructions for making it are pretty straight forward.  Each bag of soup mix makes approximately 125 bowls of soup.
A morning at Prairie Gleaners Dave Panabaker 2020-10-19 06:00:00Z 0

An Hour of Rotary minutes

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The meeting was full of minutes and updates on Rotary projects going on over the past few months.
 
The RI Gold Club Citation certificate for the 2019-2020 Rotary year has arrived and is in the safekeeping of Secretary Doug Fleming.  PP Margie gave tribute to the Board and members for this achievement, our club was one of only four clubs in the District in 2019-2020 which achieved this recognition.
PRESIDENTIAL PROJECT DONATION
 
PP Margie advised that the group of new members, Shalla, Igor and Peter, are having a Zoom meeting on Wednesday (8 October) to decide which of the projects / initiatives on which they have gathered information, will be the recipient of the $1,000. Their choice will be put to the Board for approval, after which a presentation will be made at a regular noon meeting, hopefully before the end of the year. These members have enjoyed the opportunity this project has created, to get to know more about community needs and possible ways in which Rotary can respond.
 
NEW GENERATIONS SERVICE EXCHANGE PROGRAM
 
So as not to allow the COVID virus to totally paralyze the NGSE program globally, District 3131 in India is wanting to organize virtual placements of 18-30 year olds with families and at work places in their District. If you know of any young person who would like to venture into this unchartered territory and help make the path by walking it, please ask him/her to contact Margie Booyens for further details. An application form will be sent out to all members of our Club, for distribution to interested young people. The NGSE program is all about exposure to chosen field of studies/work getting to know the culture of the country and people in the district, and voluntary service.
 
WORLD POLIO DAY, SUNDAY OCT 24, 2020.
 
 
PDF Sandy Mackay reminded Rotarians that although this project has made great headway, the work is still not complete.  Africa has been declared "wild Polio" free, the only cases that now exist stem from vaccine related reactions, due to living conditions and diet.
 
It will be difficult to promote World Polio Day as we did last year, with gathering restrictions in place, but it was suggested that members please consider making donations to RI for Polio Plus, in lieu of October and November Zoom lunches - which would total $100.  The easiest way to make a donation is to go to "My Rotary" and sign in, and click on the donate button.
 
It is the clubs intention to publicize the efforts of Rotary through local media and social media platforms.  It is not a disease that attracts much attention anymore in North America as it has been so long since active cases were being treated.
 
Sandy will be organizing a  speaker (a neurologist) to address members on polio at a regular Zoom noon meeting.
 
DENTURES FOR THE ELDERLY - SRI LANKA PROJECT
 
Terry Cooper, a member of our International Service Committee provided a quick update on this project, which was started last year and has been severely impacted by COVID lockdowns.  The project was set to provide dentures to at least 300 patients, but was shutdown from mid-March through to late summer.  About 100 patients have been provided with denture work, and about $2,000 of our original donation of $10,000 has been spent.  The project will be ramping up again, depending on good public health conditions, and there will be a more formal presentation of the project once about 75% of the money and the work is complete.
 
A copy of the Powerpoint presentation on this project has been filed under "Club Documents - Presentations" on Clubrunner.
An Hour of Rotary minutes Dave Panabaker 2020-10-05 06:00:00Z 0

Business meeting and Rotary presentations

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The Rotary Club had a busy business meeting today, but managed to fit in some appropriate recognition of Rotarians and service.
 
First, President Mark and Treasurer Gail provided an overview of the 2020-2021 Club Budget.  The simplified approach was well received and there were a few questions from the floor. The document will be available on Clubrunner for members to inspect in more detail.  It was described as a "safe" budget, for a completely uncertain year, but covered our current obligations, to the Centennial Park project in Dunmore and to the 20201 Music Festival.  In general the club is very solid financially, and has some reserves if a project comes up.
 
As well, the budget was conservative (NOT a political statement) in the assumptions about revenue from gaming sources and our 2021 Club 1000 raffle.  With any luck, any surprises will be good ones!
 
Next on the agenda was a presentation to Rotarian Al Garden.  Al has been a member of the club for almost 40 years and because of change health and circumstances had advised the club executive that he would not be renewing his membership.  After a discussion with the membership committee, it was decided that we didn't want to lose Al's experience and company and the club was delighted to present Al with an honorary membership to the Club.  Al was grateful and expressed his deep appreciation for the gesture.
 
The next presentation was to Rotarian Melanie Harty, who passed the PHF + 2 level of contributions to the Rotary Foundation.  PDG Sandy Mackay presented the new Rotary pin to Melanie and made a point of saying that all of us are responsible for the success of the Foundation, and in many ways we get the funds back, so please keep the Foundation in your giving plans.  Thanks and congratulations Melanie!
Business meeting and Rotary presentations Dave Panabaker 2020-09-28 06:00:00Z 0

Music Festival Impact

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Our guest speaker today was Delynne Lorentzen, the Executive Director of the Rotary Music Festival.  She joined us remotely, through a YouTube video she had created to demonstrate the value of music and the festival to our youth and to the community.  Delynne started by thanking the Rotary Club for their sponsorship of the last 65 years, the longest continuous sponsorship of a Festival in Alberta and definitely something to be proud of.
Delynne wanted to demonstrate her top seven reasons for support of the Festival.
  1. Festival provides an opportunity for kids who are otherwise marginalized.
  2. Music makes kids smarter.
  3. Music teaches kids discipline, creativity and builds confidence.
  4. Music keeps kids out of trouble.
  5. Music reduces mental health issues.
  6. Music gives back to the community.
  7. Music creates good citizens and successful adults.
Her video presentation can be found on YouTube at the following link.
 
 
Both Milan Vujovic and Don Davis added thanks to Delynne for all her hard work and provided some updates on the planning around this years festival.  With COVID to contend with, several scenario's are being planned for and alterations to the way the programs are handled and what programs are available are certainly in the works.
 
Music Festival Impact Dave Panabaker 2020-09-21 06:00:00Z 0

Mustard Seed in Medicine Hat

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The Rotary Club welcomed Mustard Seed Managing Director Colette Eirich to our meeting today.  Colette was introduced by President Mark and provided a short slideshow to speak to the work done by the agencies that went before the Mustard Seed and how that changeover came to be.
Colette spoke about her career before this one, she spent a total of 32 years working at the YMCA.  She finished there in 2017 after the completion of the South Ridge Y and took a year or so off.  After that she began volunteering and then working at the Champions Center, helping write grant applications.
 
Colette spoke about the three organizations that have merged their functions and resources with the introduction of the support of Mustard Seed.  Champions Center started in 2008, Hope Street Ministry's began in 2002 and Oasis Cafe was 2009.  During pre-COVID times, there were approximately 68 individuals considered homeless and in poverty.  That number was from 2018.  COVID has changed all that, and the individuals needing assistance has skyrocketed.
 
It was a great presentation, Colette left everyone with a Mustard Seed magazine. More information is available at www.theseed.ca 
Mustard Seed in Medicine Hat Dave Panabaker 2020-08-24 06:00:00Z 0

Visit of the District Governor - 2020

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In keeping with the current health situation, this years visit of the District Governor was a "virtual" one.  The club welcomed Mary Turner, Rotary 5360 District Governor 2020-2021 to our meeting, accompanied by the new Assistant Governor for this area Keith Walker from the Medicine Hat Sunrise Rotary Club.  Both were welcomed by club President Mark Sorenson and DG Mary was introduced by Keith.
 
Keith introduced Mary, a Toronto native who joined Rotary in 2008 and was club President in Olds for the 2013-2014 year.  She and her husband Steve operate the Wildrose Medical Center in Olds and have been active in the YEX program, hosting 3 long term students.
 
Mary started out by thanking everyone for attending this meeting, in this unique year and her current nickname within the District is "COVID Mary".  She spoke about the upcoming partnership between Rotary and Toastmasters, the addition of a 7th area of focus for Rotary International, that being "Enviroment".  She touched on the need to increase our diversity, particularly the balance of males and females in each club and she was particularly delighted to announce the appointment of Jennifer Jones, as the Rotary International President for 2022-2023.  Jennifer is a Canadian, a member of the Rotary Club of Windsor and will be the first female President of RI in history.
 
Mary also spoke about the wishes of current RI President Holger Knaack, Rotary Club of Herzogtum Lauenburg-Mölln, Germany.  Holger would like each club to take on a few goals for his year including. 
  1. Consider new models for membership, satellite and passport clubs.
  2. Have at least one strategic planning meeting each year.
  3. Be very thorough and careful in selecting members.
  4. And remember that we are "this close" to ending Polio, and support the Rotary Foundation in this effort.
DG Mary also invited everyone to the upcoming District Conference, on May 14-16 in Drumheller, AB.  She hopes it will be an in person meeting but flexibility is the name of the game currently.  She ended her presentation by speaking about her "Rotary moment", working in her club to help a school in Kenya and that showed her the impact an individual and a club can have around the world.
 
Mary was thanked by President Mark and answered a few questions.  We all wish her great success in her year and hope to see her "in person" after January of 2021.
Visit of the District Governor - 2020 Dave Panabaker 2020-08-10 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Drive-Thru Ribfest

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Treasurer Gail Halderman explained the logistics and requirements of the planned "drive-thru" Ribfest, scheduled for August 7 - 9, 2020 running each day from 11am - 7pm.  There are a number of logistics to organize, including power, propane and water.  The "ribbers" are very efficient and can process about a dozen cars a minute, so the service should be fast. Questions were asked about insurance, alcohol and traffic control which Gail explained.
The intention is that vehicles will line up using the Murray Chev-Olds parking lot, and will view the menu's and different "ribbers" offerings as they wait in line.  Then they will line up in the line they wish to purchase from, the ordering and payment will all be done on an iPad system and Rotary will be there to sell water, pop and perhaps pass out information about the club.
There will be 4 ribbers and one "tatter" truck, so lots of choice in the lines.
 
Gail asked Rotarians to consider volunteering, there will be approximately 3 shifts each day of about 4 hours.  We intend to have the Rotary Tent there, and hopefully can provide a "novel" event at this unusual time.  If you are available that weekend please contact Gail, he's helping organize our side of the event.
Rotary Drive-Thru Ribfest Dave Panabaker 2020-07-13 06:00:00Z 0

Induction of the 2020 - 2021 Executive

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In another first for the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat, a virtual induction of our new executive was performed on Monday June 29.  A "Zoom meeting" to do inductions is certainly not the normal for our club but pretty much everything in the last four months has been usual, so this was no exception.
 
Margie Booyens started the meeting with a summary of the past year and a long list of "thank you's" to fellow board members and club members for all the hard work over the past 12 months. She reviewed the accomplishments of the club based on her "slogan" for the year of "Our Club harnesses diversity to strengthen the impact of Rotary Service in the community".  She spoke about the great additions to the club this year, and the flexibility to embrace virtual meetings and changes to our programs.  A complete list of all we've undertaken will be in the DOCUMENTS section of Clubrunner, for everyone's review.  For all the positive, there have been challenges including the loss of some valuable Board members in the process.  We are starting the Rotary year "leaner" but determined.
Margie spoke about the honor and pleasure of serving as President of the club.  She gave special thanks to a long list of board members, executive, committee chairs and Rotarians who provided assistance and effort through the year. She encouraged all to consider making themselves available for leadership positions in the club - "it is a privilege, fun and a growth-inducing challenge."
 
The new Board and Executive were inducted by AG Dave Panabaker, and are as follows;
 
President :          Mark Sorenson
Past-President:    Margie Booyens
President-elect:   Terry Partis
Secretary:            Doug Fleming
Treasurer:            Gail Halderman
 
Directors:  Mike Christie, Melanie Harty, Glen Presley, Dave Panabaker
 
After the formal induction, President Mark Sorenson took the microphone and ran the balance of the meeting.
Mark spoke about the need to collect ourselves, consolidate the good things about the club and move forward together.  He invited all Rotarians to be in contact with him, encouraged everyone to communicate and collaborate and think about the future.  He recognizes this may be a difficult year, with fund raising changes and less folks around to do the work.  But he is also confident that we can do anything we put our minds to, and the way forward is easy if we work together.
 
He spoke about the idea of moving venues, something that has been put on hold by COVID and that as soon as we can, he wants to start meeting in person.
 
Induction of the 2020 - 2021 Executive Dave Panabaker 2020-06-29 06:00:00Z 0

A Pair of District Governors

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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed both our current District 5360 Governor, Christine Rendell and the incoming District Governor, Mary Turner.  Both ladies were introduced by Dave Panabaker, outgoing AG for this area, who welcomed them to the meeting and provided a little background.
DG Christine spoke about this year of "firsts", not the least of which was the meeting of clubs, boards, RI and many others remotely.  It is great to see how many clubs and Rotarians have taken on the challenge of adapting and learning this new technology, some of which wouldn't have happened without the external stress of the pandemic.  Christine talked about her roll, the changes since the lockdown and how Rotary is dealing with it.  She spoke about the District Learning and Development workshops that have really made use of remote technology, making many opportunities available to all Rotarians.
Incoming DG Mary Turner spoke about how the travel changes have affected her, and that very soon the District level "impact of Covid" survey (with individual club statistics as well) will be available.  Mary also spoke about the volunteer connector project, putting needs and available volunteers together, the "people of action" partnership with Toastmasters to assist in training and her plans for her year.
 
DGE Mary will hold her convention in Drumheller, AB on May 14 thru 16, 2021 and has great hope that it will go ahead as a face to face meeting.  She will be holding virtual DG visits through the summer and fall and spoke about working with incoming President Mark of our club on the logistics of the new Rotary year.
 
Both ladies were thanked by President Margie, and the club was very grateful for their presence today.
A Pair of District Governors Dave Panabaker 2020-06-22 06:00:00Z 0

Induction Ceremony for Impa Hiriyanna

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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Impa Hiriyanna to the club today.  District Governor Christine Rendell was present today and did the welcome to Rotary.
Impa was introduced by her sponsor Milan Vujovic.   Impa has experience in the "non-profit" sector, and was inducted over her phone while she traveled to a meeting she had at 1:00pm.  Impa spoke about the profile of Rotary in the community and how several of her friends were members of the club.  She will be more active and available as the Covid crisis abates, and she is a creative person with many hobbies.  She is also a Mom, which is her top priority during this lockdown.
 
Impa was welcomed to the club by President Margie and given a "virtual" hug and applause from those members present.  We look forward to learning more about her in the weeks and months ahead.
Induction Ceremony for Impa Hiriyanna Dave Panabaker 2020-06-22 06:00:00Z 0

Elder Abuse Presentation

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Shantel Ottenbriet is a City Community Resource worker based out of the Veiner Centre, a trained Social Worker and Chair of the Provincial Elder Abuse Council

She advised there is Elder abuse in Medicine Hat even though we may find that hard to believe.The last census shows 19,995 adults over 55 years, less than 2,000 have experienced Elder Abuse. Not all cases are reported.

Definition of Elder Abuse is: ‘Action or inaction by a person in a trust position towards an Elder’

Types of Abuse: Neglect, Financial, Physical, Mental, Health

 

Local Activities: Local Coalition formed to provide training to professionals in this field.

Local Resources: Pocket Toolkit - to educate and provide strategies to identify and deal with abuse.

Notice Me campaign on Facebook & Instagram to raise awareness.

Core Alberta is providing information at a provincial level to make more people aware, through promotion, sharing ideas and best practices.

 

Situation in Medicine Hat.

· Active thriving coalition.

· Working with province on updates to ‘Power of Attorney’ legislation

· Need for Case worker (Dedicated staff) funding required. Shantel is currently handling some cases but only within the City so need for someone who could cover city & district.

· Concerns may be an increase due to isolation as a result of COVID 19.

Veiner Centre which is a resource to seniors currently closed but they are looking at ways to open and provide the activities/services while adhering to the COVID guidelines. I.E how do you social distance & play cards? Sanitizing issues, etc. The City may also be looking for new model to run the Veiner Centre.  A copy of Shantel's presentation is loaded into the Club Documents section of our website.

 

Following a Q & A Session, President Margie thanked our speaker.

Elder Abuse Presentation Doug Fleming 2020-06-15 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary International statement on racism

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President Margie Booyens ended the meeting today, by reading a recent statement from Rotary International, regarding the continuing protests on discrimination and policing issues throughout the world.  She expressed the wish that we as a club and each of us as individuals, could embrace this statement and work hard to live it.
Rotary International statement on racism Dave Panabaker 2020-06-08 06:00:00Z 0

Update from Mayor Ted

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The Rotary Club welcomed Honorary member, Mayor Ted Clugston to the meeting today.
 
Mayor Ted was introduced by Mike Christie (as Ted Grimm), but we aren't sure he wants to serve in the role quite as long as Mayor Grimm did.
 
 
Ted ran through a number of issues ongoing in the community at this time, particularly the impact of Covid-19 on the business community and how the City has responded to help restart the local economy and give everyone a little breathing room to pay City Taxes as they become due at the end of the summer.  Mayor Ted also spoke about the large cannibis greenhouse being constructed by Aurora, as well as the annual potential flood event which this community has been dealing with for many years.  The berms are almost finished, but as the Mayor said "a 98% berm is basically not much good, so that work continues".
 
Ted took a few questions and spoke about the impact of the social distancing and shutdown on operations at City Hall.  As always, a great talk...thanks for your time today Mayor Ted!!
Update from Mayor Ted Dave Panabaker 2020-06-08 06:00:00Z 0

Winter in Mexico - Part 3

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This is the third and last part of a story by Rotarian Terry Cooper, on his experience wintering in Mexico.
 
Escaping Winter in Rincon de Guayabitos – Part 3
 
During our walks we often took along bags to pick up any pieces of small garbage (especially plastic) which was appreciated by both the locals and visitors. Many thanked us and even contributed to our collection! The beaches were cleaned regularly so we were simply picking up what the cleaners missed and the beaches were far cleaner than we have seen at other beaches we’ve visited over the years.
 
Staying in a fishing village one would expect that fresh fish would be available along the shore and we weren’t disappointed. Most mornings we walked along the beach to get fresh fish from our favourite fisherman Jose who always greeted us with a smile and often threw in an extra filet of another fish. We normally paid around 200 pesos (~ $14 CAN) for about a kg of fish which gave us a meal for two days. I think ate almost all of the offerings to – dorado (mahi-mahi), sole, red snapper, sea bass, marlin, tuna, shark, prawns. The nice part was that the fish were fileted so there were no bones or extra work.
 
  
 
We often ventured outside the tourist area to visit local communities such as a show factory and brick-making facility. Visiting the shoe factory in Compostela reminded me of the sweat shops we saw in southeast Asia. There were about 5 people, including a school aged boy, who were working the human assemble line. The young boy worked in the morning and went to school in the afternoon. The soles were made from old tires while the rest of the shoe was made from leather. At the front of the shop was the store where the shoes were sold for around 220 pesos (~$15 CAN). Belts were also sold and now I wish I had picked up one seeing the process and labour involved.
 
   
On our trip to Compostela we observed a worker making tiles and bricks using a traditional process passed down over the years using basically three components – clay, cow dung, and sawdust. After mixing the three components, the worker poured the mixture into a form, wetted the surface, removed the form and repeated the process. Later the tiles / bricks were used to create the kiln which was then fired using wood. The worker has been working here at this small operation for over 30 years at wages that would embarrass us – pennies per brick. Most buildings in Mexico are made of brick, tile and concrete because wood is very expensive and requires constant treatment to prevent damage from terminates.
   
Winter in Mexico - Part 3 Terry Cooper 2020-06-08 06:00:00Z 0

Winter in Mexico - Part 2

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This is Part 2, of a 3 part story done by Rotarian Terry Cooper about his experience wintering in Mexico.
 
Escaping Winter in Rincon de Guayabitos – Part 2
 
After spending several winters in the Palm Springs area Carol and I decided to spend the winter in a small fishing town called Rincon de Guayabitos half-way up Mexico’s Pacific coast just north of Puerto Vallarta. We decided to give up the biking, hiking trails, fine arts, frequent rain and cooler weather in the Palm Springs California during the winter period (and the constant stream of divisive American politics in the media) for walking along the ocean and enjoying the almost constant sunshine and warm weather for the Pacific coast. Best of all – no driving! The town, like many along the coast, draws many domestic tourists (especially on the weekends and holidays) but relatively few foreign visitors compared to Puerto Vallarta. Most of the visitors are Canadian with few Americans or other nationalities. Mariachis and indigenous Huichol musicians roam the soft white sands, offering to serenade you for a small fee. Others offer exquisite skewers of freshly caught tuna or prawns grilled in a smoky marinade and doused with hot sauce and lime juice. The Saskatchewan Rough Riders obviously have a contingent of Rider fans down here in Nayarit. One can’t avoid their promotional material whether walking the beach or attending the market in La Penita de Jaltemba. During our visit to the market in La Penita de Jaltemba it was obvious that the sellers were appreciative of the Canadians. However, President Trump ... not so much.
 
  
 
Carol and I decided to stay in a colourful, beachside hotel with twin pools and an outdoor jacuzzi but with an outdoor kitchen and patio and locked off bedroom. Some say we are just one step up from camping given the close proximity to other residents in the complex. There is little privacy but we enjoy meeting our neighbours as they come and go from their rooms.
 
  
 
We had planned to spend a few days in Puerto Vallarta before heading home April 1 but we received a  notice mid March from the Alberta Retired Teachers' Association (ARTA) telling all members who have their ARTA Emergency Travel plan that they must be back in Canada within 10 days or else their insurance won't cover any coronavirus related issues. It took some time to get our flights changed but left March 21 a day before WestJet cancelled all flights home. Up until this time Mexico didn’t seem concerned about the Novid-19 virus but on our way to the airport we did see notices advising locals to begin social distancing. Shortly after all beaches were closed and access to the fishing villages was restricted to local residents only. Rincon has just opened to visitors. Hopefully this virus will be contained soon so we are able to return again next year to this area.
Winter in Mexico - Part 2 Terry Cooper 2020-06-01 06:00:00Z 0

2020 Rotary Club AGM

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Past President Dave Panabaker led the club through their annual general meeting, rescheduled to later in the Rotary year and done virtually due to the social distancing restrictions of Covid-19.  This certainly was a different AGM that we are used to in this club, but everyone in attendance was supportive and the process went well.
 
After dealing with a few housekeeping issues, including checking that a quorum of club members (34 of 65) were in attendance, the meeting was turned over to the current executive.  President Margie Booyens, Club Secretary Doug Fleming, Membership Director Mike Christie all provided short reports.
 
After a final call for nominations from the floor, PP Dave presented a motion that the club approve the slate as presented, a motion that was seconded by Roger Roy.
 
2020 - 2021 Rotary Club of Medicine Hat
 
Proposed Executive
President -             Mark Sorenson
Past President -     Margie Booyens
President - Elect - Terry Partis
Treasurer -            Gail Halderman
Secretary -            Doug Fleming
 
Directors 
Mike Christie
Melanie Hardy
Glen Presley
Dave Panabaker
vacant (2)
 
The slate was approved with no noted objections.  Thanks to all of you for serving the club.
2020 Rotary Club AGM Dave Panabaker 2020-05-25 06:00:00Z 0

Performance by 2020 Rosebowl Winners

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The club was delighted to welcome Soren and Laec Lorentzen to our meeting today, to perform as Duo Fratelli.
 
The boys were introduced by the Chairperson of the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat Music Festival Society, Milan Vujovic.  In part he wished to thank Delynne Lorentzen, Executive Director of the Rotary Music Festival and her assistant Lorie McKenzie for their great work and making our Music Festival on the best in Alberta.  He also thanked Don Davis, Joe Chacko, Terry Brekko and Jillian Koch, for all their hard work on behalf of the Festival.  He spoke about the measurable values of the Festival, the development and showcasing of local talent and ultimately careers in the arts.  He also spoke about the hidden values, the boys and girls who had a chance to develop self discipline, to perform publicly, to experience a sense of accomplishment, to build confidence in their abilities and talents.  This is the unmeasurable value, the part that makes a big difference and has far reaching impact.
 
Brothers Soren and Laec Lorentzen have been performing together since they were 10 and 7 respectively.  They have individually as soloists both been previous Rosebowl winners and have competed in the chamber/ensemble category for the past three years.  Their music has taken them to many parts of Canada and they have been both competed at the Provincial Festival.
 
Here is a link to their Rosebowl performance.
 
 
Laec will be attending McCoy High School in the fall and Soren will be starting a Bachelor's degree program at Rice University in Texas, within the Shepherd School of Music.  The club thanks them both for their performance and wishes them all the best in their future endeavors.
 
Performance by 2020 Rosebowl Winners Dave Panabaker 2020-05-18 06:00:00Z 0

New Rotary Track sign

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Rotary Club President-elect Mark Sorenson and President of the Medicine Hat Track and Field Society Marg Derbyshire unveil the new signage at the Rotary Track and Soccer complex.  The new signage is bright and very visible from the
roadway.  The original signage had to be removed, when recent expansion and renovations to the facilities were undertaken.
New Rotary Track sign Dave Panabaker 2020-05-18 06:00:00Z 0

History of Estelí English School

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My relationship with Nicaragua started when I went with an Oxfam Farmer’s Brigade in March 1987. I spent five weeks teaching farmers how to maintain and repair their newly acquired farm machinery. I was very impressed with their simplicity and appreciation of life, and I always entertained the thought of returning.  Fast forward to Nicaragua 2011 where I ended up looking for old friends from the brigade.  I eventually found 5 people at Casa Blanca, where I had worked, and with whom I spent the day reminiscing about events 24 years ago.
   
While riding an express bus back to Managua a few days later, a young university student from Estelí seated beside me, passed me a note asking if I spoke Spanish.  I said that I could, barely, and Sarai proceeded to tell me their dilemma of career limitations because of lack of affordable English lessons, a skill that more and more employers were seeking in employees.
I returned to Canada several months later and found the Oxford TESOL (Teaching English to speakers of other languages) course at UBCO in Kelowna. At the age of 55 I was finally going to university.  I finished the course, and in January 2012 found myself back in Estelí, Nicaragua. Sarai introduced me to her church elders and I started teaching in their church three nights a week to a group of 20-30 students.  It was a huge learning curve for a retired grain and cattle farmer from Alberta to start a new career teaching English in a developing country. Two months and dozens of new friends later I said goodbye but promised I would return in October. 
I flew back to Calgary, landed and promptly went to a birthday party.  There I met a dentist from High River, Vicki McMullen, to whom I told about my recent experiences in Nicaragua.
 
In October 2012 I was back in Estelí with a Canadian ESL teacher, a Nicaraguan teacher, and our own schoolhouse, albeit rented.  Classes five days per week, and we were an actual English school.  Teaching adult and children groups, each with its own curriculum, was a stressful but rewarding challenge.  
 
In December 2012 Vicki McMullen wrote asking me to organize a dental brigade.  I met Dr. Larry Molina, my since then Nica dentist friend, with whom I organized my first dental brigade which was a resounding success. Doctors Vicki, Larry and Melida Rios, were able to provide 70 adults and children with complete dental care.  This experience led to many more brigades, the largest being Moses Lake Medical Team, which provided medical, optical, dental, and physio care to over 1000 people in 5 days in February 2016.  This connection enabled me to accompany MLMT to Nigeria in November 2016 on a medical mission, an adventure I will never forget or regret.
 
I joined Medicine Hat Rotary in 2015 by Skype from Estelí, and started to attend the meetings of Estelí Rotary Club in Nicaragua.  Convincing the Estelí club to actively pursue sponsorship from the MHRC, they decided to plan a renovation project at Club Sta Lucia, a home for abandoned and indigent seniors.  MHRC sponsored the project and we were able to almost completely renovate the home.
 
Medicine Hat High School Interact became involved by the energetic encouragement of Theresa Eisenbarth. They sponsored two projects, one, a house built by Estelí Rotaract Club for 76 year old Alberto Gutierrez, which evolved into three more residences built by the municipality for his siblings.  They had been living in shacks not fit for human habitation. The second project was sponsoring a complete water delivery system to 200 residents in the community of Santa Rosa.
 
Estelí English School has also secured funds from other sources for another community, Macuelizo, which received latrines, complete water system, grey water system, and laundry facilities.  We also arranged medical and dental brigades to attend the residents, this being the very first time medical personnel had ever been to this community in 50 years!
 
Today at Estelí English School we have 10 groups of students receiving English classes 6 days per week, all free of charge.  Two qualified teachers manage and instruct upwards of 200 students, from beginner to advanced, with long lists of people waiting to enter our classes.
 
We at EES have been able to achieve many successes, but those have been shadowed at times by failures, which have not deterred our vision.  Onward and upward, which keeps our motto “English is the key” alive and well.
History of Estelí English School Dave Panabaker 2020-05-17 06:00:00Z 0

Classification Diversity and Membership

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The program today for Rotary was a group discussion, led by our club Membership Chair Mike Christie on diversity of membership, both from different walks of life and different classifications but varying kinds of memberships...associates, corporate and others.
 
It was our first attempt to hold a discussion like this over the "virtual" meeting platform, but Mike was successfully able to share his screen, talk about where some membership and club documents are located on Clubrunner and provide a breakdown of some area's where our club may be missing out.  A recent survey of club members found several area's of the business community where we could potentially expand.  As well, the suggestion was made that as we are members of the Chamber of Commerce, the membership directory of that organization might be a great place to start.
 
A variety of options and opinions were shared and all of us believe that belonging to Rotary is as relevant and impactful now as at any time in the past.  We all know people who would make good Rotarians, we need to find ways to engage them and improve our meeting alignment, and project contributions to match with a busy world.
 
Classification Diversity and Membership Mike Christie 2020-05-11 06:00:00Z 0

Santa Rosa Community Water project

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The joint Esteli Rotary Club, Medicine Hat High School Interact Club and Rotary Club of Medicine Hat water project has been completed and is operating perfectly.
 
 
The project, guided by Medicine Hat/Esteli Rotarian Doug Thorson, aimed to provide potable water to 41 homes and approximately 200 members of the community for drinking, cooking, bathing and other domestic purposes.
The original pump for this well was a hand powered wheel, bringing up a small amount of water with each turn of the wheel.  It took 30 seconds for any water to appear at surface and the pump was in need of replacement due to wear and tear, and use over a long time.
The new pump in the well delivers approximately 100 litres of water every minute into a 2,500 litre storage tank, which then distributes the water through buried pipes to several faucets between groups of houses.  Water distribution is regulated for the time being and will be monitored to discourage wasteful habits.
      
The project was slightly delayed to January 2020 due to re-submission of cost estimates and municipal licensing requirements.  The contractor ultimately acquired the necessary permits and water tests to ensure that the well water was safe for human consumption.
The Esteli Rotary Club members and the Santa Rosa community members were the lynch pin of this project.  They provided much more that the listed $800US worth of labor and time.  Countless trips to the community, phone calls, meetings, discussions and then momentum to complete the project.
     
 
This is a life changing project for the members of this community, and with a total cost of around $5,000 is providing safe drinking water at a cost of about $25/person.
Santa Rosa Community Water project Douglas Thorson 2020-05-11 06:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk - Peter Mueller

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The Rotary Club welcomed to the "screen" of our Zoom meeting, one of our newest members Peter Mueller.
 
Peter provided a wonderful, and touching summary of his life to date, his early years as an immigrant to Medicine Hat from both the aftermath of World War 2 in Europe and the repression that came to East Germany after the war.  He spoke about the difficulty of being German in this area as a child, and how it took a fair amount of time for some of that to fade away.
He spoke about his children and his first wife, some of the wonderful moments and some of the tough times.  He showed a couple of travel pictures, done for his mental health as well as his physical well being.
 
He talked about his experience as a teacher, and his recent experience running for Provincial politics.  A great presentation, we are lucky to have him in our club and we wish him the best for his new "career" in Rotary.
Classification Talk - Peter Mueller Dave Panabaker 2020-05-04 06:00:00Z 0

Escaping the Cold - Rotary in Mexico

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During our winter break in Rincon de Guayabitos Mexico, Roger Roy invited me to the La Penita Bahia de Jaltempa Rotary club meetings (a 20 minute walk away). The club meets every Wednesday morning and the meetings go only for an hour and finishes promptly at 9:00 AM. I think the club president had a stop watch. The Sergeant at Arms role is easy – someone comes around and each visitor is asked to donate (~20 pesos) and say something if they wish. There were no fines as such – just a quasi mandatory donation.
Roger and I brought down a couple of donated walkers which we gave to the local club here and I hope to get a little more involved with the club activities and school projects next year as Roger mentioned in the last newsletter. It is a small world - Fred von Schellwitz used to be a member of our club and we talked about his days in Medicine Hat.
 
Charlene Bearden District 5360 Executive Assistant for southern Alberta gave an excellent presentation on her role and responsibilities with the Rotary clubs of our region which appeared in an earlier post this year (https://rotary5360.ca/stories/district-administrator-makes-presentations-everywhere/).
I also ran into Gail Surkan, former mayor of Red Deer, and her husband, who have had a condo in this region of Mexico for a number of years. I knew Gail when she and I served on the former Community Savings Credit Union board before its merger with Servus Credit Union in 2008.
Carol and I often took the local transportation to visit other beaches / fishing villages along the coast such as San Pancho (or San Francisco as it is sometimes called) about half way between Rincon de Guayabitos and Puerto Vallarta where we hooked up with fellow Rotarian Dan Kammerer and his partner Cheryl.
The ocean was very rough that day and really only for fearless surfers so we didn’t go in. Of all the beach resorts we visited during our stay in Mexico San Pancho has probably the most amenities including refined restaurants along with a touch of art and culture (a mini Banff).
During our walk through San Pancho the four of us had a chance to visit Entreamigos, a Community and Educational Center that provides educational opportunities to local children and young people in San Pancho which is a story in itself and which Dan could post in a future newsletter.
Escaping the Cold - Rotary in Mexico Terry Cooper 2020-05-04 06:00:00Z 0

Financial Update

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With all the changes to daily life and the restrictions on both Public Gatherings and Gaming activities, the Club Board felt it was wise to sit down with the annual budget, and review both where we stand and what the future might look like. So 3 Wise Men (Gail Halderman, Terry Partis and Mark Sorenson) met and review the status of our accounts.
 
At today's meeting Gail review the preliminary results, preliminary because the return to anything near normal is still uncertain, so the future is very cloudy.  In general, the review resulted in a positive opinion about the clubs position, we have adequate reserves for our known commitments in 2020-2021 and have some hope that our service and giving can be expanded, depending on that cloudy future.
 
A number of questions were asked and answered, and lets hope "normal" returns soon.  Thanks to all three of the wise fellows for their counsel. 
Financial Update Dave Panabaker 2020-04-27 06:00:00Z 0

Roger's winter in La Penita, Mexico

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As requested by our Club President Margie,  here's a brief summary of my Rotary activities this last winter:
 
I'm also involved w/ Angels for Mexico which is out of Calgary,  Christina Callaghan is CEO and they build playgrounds (this is built in 4 days from raw material) and also supply & train fire departments.  Did lots of traveling w/ Angels for Mexico looking for new playground sites.  Amazing accomplishments!!
 
 

Helped ship & disperse walkers & wheelchairs .This was coordinated by Randy & Caroline Vandeen from the Saamis Rotary club in Medicine Hat.  Some of the walkers I placed w/ our club in Guayabitos  (Terry Cooper also brought
one).  Ignacio w/ El Tuito Rotary picked loads & placed with the needy as far as 2 hours south of Puerto Vallarta.
 
 

I know a lot of RV'ers, so we bring down cases of school supplies which Helma directs the "All schools project".

We did concrete work at Los Ayolas school.Widened sidewalk, made ramps cut out & widened bathroom door & made all wheel chair accessible.
 
 
 
Volunteer and helped out at the annual Rotary fundraiser...Always a sell out of 400 people.  John Spry (Campbell River Rotary) & myself usually sell close to 50% of tickets.....so they like seeing us back every year.
 
  
 
Every year there's a fashion show which is also a sell out of 400.  It is put on by a group of ladies & funds are used for scholar ships.  As seen we are waiters...Lots of fun.
 
The wash rooms were not working in a school(La Colema) where we did extensive work over the last 2 years. This is Jim Smith's (Olds Rotary) project. I drafted Libert (RV'er from Calgary) to give us a hand....4 days later we got it done....pressure system was plugged as well as broken toilet bowls etc...Libert's not a Rotarian so I suggested we should give him recognition for the hours of volunteering.  At our breakfast meeting we presented Libert w/ a Certificate of special recognition....Ironically I also received one which was not anticipated!
 


This gives a brief overview from this last winter.

Gracias (Club Rotario Bahia DE Jaltemba La Penita)
Roger's winter in La Penita, Mexico Roger Roy 2020-04-27 06:00:00Z 0

Youth Vital Conversations - CFSEA

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The Rotary Club welcomed guests Sue Edwards and Chris Christie from the Community Foundation of South Eastern Alberta to our meeting today, to speak about a recent project involving youth in the community, and conversations about what they saw as issues and possible solutions.
 
The Project, which was financed by a large grant from RBC had two main objectives. The first was a "Future Launch Community Challenge" where $60,000 was granted to youth-led initiatives across SE Alberta.  The second was "Youth Vital Conversations" where facilitators hosted youth and directed them through a questionnaire initiative.  The team met with over 800 youth at a wide variety of locations, and many of the participates used a smart phone app to input their answers.
 
As well, what do you see as the biggest issues facing youth?
Next steps involve sharing the results with Community Partners as they were doing today, sharing data with the Medicine Hat College which was very interested in the results, aligning the grant priorities with the Community Impact Award to reflect the feedback and to report to the RBC Foundation.
 
Obviously some of the work as slowed down with the recent pandemic restrictions, but they hope to finished over the summer.
Youth Vital Conversations - CFSEA Dave Panabaker 2020-04-20 06:00:00Z 0

Winter in Mesa, Arizona. 2019/2020

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Ric and I enjoy 5-1/2 months in our Winter Home (Valle Del Ore), Mesa Arizona. When we arrive the end of October, we immediately begin our busy routine of Water Aerobics, Cycling, Hiking, Tennis, and volunteer duties with the weekly Chapel Service.

We belong to the 250-member Tennis Club, which plays on six courts of artificial turf. There is a league with several other parks in the Mesa area, which we play in.

My real story begins with being the Tennis Clubs, Campaign Chairman for an ‘Adopted Family at Christmas”. Each November, contact is made with the East Valley Baptist church who provides a Food Bank for destitute families. Our designated family provides requests for basic needs (ie: TP paper, laundry soap, diapers, etc.) as well as clothes, and Christmas gifts for the family.

This year we were connected with a single Father (Josh) and his two sons (Nathan – 10 and Ricky – (8). They’re connection with the Church and Food Bank began one day in early November when the truck they were living in ran out of gas. They rolled into the parking lot of the Church, sleeping in the truck that night. The wonderful, caring Pastor Hughes and his wife Mary, took them in and provided food, found living quarters, clothing, and gas money. In return Josh helped stock the food bank shelves and other odd jobs.

I started the collection from Tennis Club members and a friend and I shopped for requested items. The purchases and gifts were wrapped & presented. First on the agenda, however, was paying December’s rent before eviction December 5th. Truck was then repaired with money donated by a member. Transportation other than bikes could now be used to get the boys to school. Broken bikes were repaired by Ric and two newer ones purchased from Goodwill.I approached Management of our Park and by the middle of December, Josh had a job with the Maintenance Department. This $15 an hour job and $940 rent still led to further needs. Food was provided by the Tennis Club, as well as the Food Bank. The next wall was hit, when the repaired truck broke down, and once again the Tennis Club membership stepped up and a used van, in excellent work order, was purchased, insurance bought, and Josh and the boys have good wheels.

Josh continues to work hard and do whatever he can do to support the three of them. This was a very rewarding experience, as I am totally convinced this young Dad and his boys have found a new life

Even though this was not a Rotary Club connection, it was “service above self”, which I have learned to live by through my Rotary involvement.

Winter in Mesa, Arizona. 2019/2020 Anne Carrier 2020-04-14 06:00:00Z 0

Grateful to go Home

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Rotarians

As part of our "remote meeting" process, we have time and space for members to share their experiences in the current travel climate.  New Rotary member Shalla Shaharyar provided the following summary of her recent trip home to Pakistan.

We'd love to publish others, please send them in.

Editor

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When I boarded the airplane to Pakistan, I did not know that this would be my shortest trip home, yet the most reflective. I had planned to stay three weeks in Pakistan, however due to Covid-19 declared as a global pandemic in the middle of my trip, I was compelled to return early. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed my short visit. 

Due to the gradual economic-social shutdown in Pakistan, I eventually became homebound, and unexpectedly with much more time on my hands, as socializing and shopping came to a quick halt.

Shalla & (my mother) Shahida - Waiting for breakfast in the beautiful morning sun!

In hindsight, this extra time was a blessing as I got more time to connect with my two beautiful nieces, which further strengthened my familial relationships, and also provided me the opportunity to learn more about my extended family through stories shared by my mother, the best story teller I know!

My nieces. Eliza and Shiza

Sitting at home also came with extended exceptional hospitality, and I indulged, unrestrained, in savoury curries, grilled skewered meats, fresh organic fruits, special naans, biryanis and much much more!! Not a bad deal after all.  Early spring had just taken hold of Islamabad, the capital city of Pakistan, when I arrived. It was breathtaking and invigorating to hear the cheering birds, see the budding flowers and trees and the vibrant hues in the backdrop of Margalla hills, a mountainous range that is part of the Himalayan foothills. March is definitely a beautiful month to visit Islamabad.

One of the more adventurous parts of my trip was driving a manual in the chaotic bustling traffic of Islamabad, not once, but thrice and live to tell about it! There is no doubt that driving a stick is fun and thrilling as it requires constant mental vigilance, but I was also glad to know that its a skill that is never lost! 

It was a short trip but one that I will always cherish. I am very thankful for the trip, and also to return safely to Canada, my second home! Now I look forward to spring taking a hold in Medicine Hat…..Shalla

Grateful to go Home Dave Panabaker 2020-04-06 06:00:00Z 0

Sewing Face Masks

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A shout out to Rotarian Dawn Barr, who has been spending her self isolation time sewing washable face masks for use in a variety of situations.  Now sewing for Dawn is not a surprise to anyone who knows her but what a great way to help out and contribute while you are staying home.  Dawn is able to sew about 20 masks each day.  Dawn mentioned "How poignant that my mom was sent to Scotland during the war to sew uniforms and here I am sewing masks ..... history does repeat .... feeling her spirit".
If you have sewing skills, and some time I know that Dawn would be happy to share the pattern with you.
Sewing Face Masks Dave Panabaker 2020-03-30 06:00:00Z 0

Classification Talk - Shalla Shaharyar

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The Rotary Club welcomed new member Shalla Shaharyar to the podium to give her Classification Talk.  Shalla was introduced by Mike Christie.
 
Shalla began her talk by expressing her appreciation for the warm welcome extended to her by the members of the club, right from the first time she was present as a guest.  She was born in Islamabad, Pakistan and spent eight years and completed high school in Washington, DC where her father worked in the foreign office.
When she returned to Pakistan, she studied for a Masters in International Relations, then worked for the British Council and married Shaharyar, who is a chemical engineer.  The couple spent time in Copenhagen, Denmark where Shaharyar continued his studies.  The couple emigrated to Canada 18 years ago, first settling in Brandon, Manitoba and then moving west to Medicine Hat.  The couple have two sons, one studying at Queens University and the other at Medicine Hat High School.
 
Shalla works at the MH College, as the English as a Second Language Administrator, as well as doing diversity training.
 
Shalla described some of the positives and negatives of their immigration experience, primarily being so far from family.  Shalla joined Rotary to enable further involvement in the community, locally and internationally and because the Rotary Motto of "Service above Self" resonates with her.  The club welcomes her and thanks her for a great presentation.
Classification Talk - Shalla Shaharyar Dave Panabaker 2020-03-09 06:00:00Z 0

The State of the City with Mayor Ted Clugston

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 10, 2020
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The Rotary Club welcomed Honorary Member, Medicine Hat Mayor Ted Clugston to the podium today.  Ted was introduced by Mike Christie, who spoke briefly about Ted's history. Mayor Ted had recently given his annual, formal "State of the City" address and he paid us a visit to give us the "Coles Notes" version.  Ted has been a council member since 2007 and Mayor since 2013.
Ted began by speaking about the "team" at City Hall...both his fellow Council members, the Executive and all the staff.  He is extremely proud of the performance of the organization and as shown in a recent article in the New York Times, as a community we "punch way above our weight class".  He spoke about the difference in municipal politics, and how everything is not as bad as it seems in the media.  He spoke of recent success, of the challenges with the recent Aurora Cannabis announcements (he expects 6 of the 36 production bays to be planted this year, with at least 50 - 100 jobs).  That facility is the largest "Controlled Agricultural Environment" in the country, over 1.6 Million sq ft. 
 
Mayor Ted spoke about the challenges in the home building sector, although commercial building is very healthy.  He spoke about the accomplishments of this Council including the completion of the flood protective berms and the work associated with transforming the "Gas City" with the abandonment of many of the oil and gas assets due to the expected prices. He mentioned expansions at Cancarb and the success of Qinetiq as reasons for optimism in the community.
Ted thanked the Rotary Club for the Rotary Music Festival, he credits it with helping a shy child blossom and finished his presentation with a poem titled "Invictus"...or "the unconquered".  Well done Mayor Ted.
 
Mayor Ted was thanked by President Margie Booyens, who spoke about the need to know the needs of the community, what issues are going unresolved or unaddressed and where can Rotary make a big impact.  Our club is reviewing those things now and hopefully will be coming up with local community service projects with the biggest "needs" in mind.
The State of the City with Mayor Ted Clugston Dave Panabaker 2020-02-10 07:00:00Z 0

Tourism Medicine Hat talk

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Jace Anderson (a member of the Sunrise Rotary Club) and the Manager of the Destination Marketing Office spoke about the impact the community has on visitors and some of the "hidden gems" that locals take for granted but are so important to visitors.  He spoke first about promotions, through the magazine "Experience Medicine Hat".  It helps build awareness of the activities and benefits in the community.
 
He spoke about various outdoor activities, like our trails system and some of the mountain biking area's.  He used examples like the Rotary Music Festival, the MH Jazzfest. the Tongue on the Post Folk Festival, and other cultural attractions which are emerging as power ways to get visitors to come and stay.
He spoke about the capital investment in the Tourist Center which is going on, to deal with the 23,000 - 25,000 annual visitors they serve every year.  He spoke about the new Sunshine Trolley as a way to get visitors around town and how both the Historic Downtown and Historic Clay District are big draws for out of town visitors.
 
He spoke about "the passion for the community" which is found in service club and elsewhere and helps provide the opportunity to engage the tourists, currently tourism is the 4th largest industry in Alberta.  He answered a number of questions and was thanked by Karen Blewett.
Tourism Medicine Hat talk Dave Panabaker 2020-02-03 07:00:00Z 0

The history of our 3H project

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jan 20, 2020
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Wayne Chesley took the podium today and presented a slide show on a trip to Calcutta India in 2008.  Sandy & Jane Mackay, Joe & Vicki Hrankowski and Wayne & Bernice Chesley travelled to Calcutta India to review the scope and impact of the 3H project organized by our club and the Rotary Club of Calcutta Metropolitan.
 
 
Our club raised approximately $6,000 and with the matching of funds through the process were able to give $48,000 to the project.  Rotary International contributed $300,000.  Wayne reviewed the devastating conditions in the villages prior to the start of the project and talked about the impact of the trip on the villagers and on the Medicine Hat Rotarians.  A copy of the presentation is stored in the Club Documents section of our website.
 
Rotary was able to provide;
  • An eye clinic
  • Vaccinations
  • Specialized health clinics
  • A school
  • Microcredit for over 500 people
  • A number of fresh water wells for village health
  • 450 toilet installations.
  • 11,000 fruit bearing trees, for food and sale.
  • And a road to connect the villages in all weather conditions, named "The Paul Harris Road"
The Calcutta newspaper printed a big article about the project once it was complete and the best quote from the write was "Rotarians won the hearts of 50,000 villagers.
 
A wonderful presentation with great pictures and a reminder to us that Rotary IS International and "doing good in the world"....thanks Wayne!
The history of our 3H project Dave Panabaker 2020-01-20 07:00:00Z 0

Medicine Hat College - Microgrid

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The Rotary Club was delighted to meet at the Medicine Hat College today to listen to a presentation by Tracy Stroud, Manager of Business Development at the College.  The Community Renewable Energy Microgrid (CREM) was a collaborative project with multiple community partners.  It includes the visible components like Electric Vehicle charging facilities, small vertical access wind turbine and a solar panel array.  It also includes a number of learning opportunities and teaching topics for students studying to be part of this upcoming technology.
 
 
Tracy spoke about the genesis of this project in 2016, how it has incorporated new technologies and opportunities over the past few years and provided alignment with a number of pieces of MH College curriculum. Tracy answered a number of questions and spoke about a few future prospects.  Many of the project goals speak to the economic changes happening within our province and the country, and it is great to see the College get their share of opportunities.
 
For those who are interested, more information about the Microgrid and the Electric Vehicle program are available on the college website, follow this link.  https://www.mhc.ab.ca/AboutMHC/PartnerWithUs/RenewableEnergy
Medicine Hat College - Microgrid Dave Panabaker 2020-01-13 07:00:00Z 0

Reclassification Talk - Gail Halderman

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jan 06, 2020
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Our Club Treasurer, Gail Halderman kicked off what is hoped to be a series of "reclassification talks", to provide long service Rotarians with a chance to introduce themselves to younger club members and to tell everyone a little bit about how their experience in Rotary has affected their life.
 
Gail is the 15th Rotarian in our club to hold the role of Treasurer. He also holds the distinction of being the second longest serving Treasurer.  He has now held that role for 22 years, beginning in 1998.  
 
 
Gail spoke about his childhood in rural Saskatchewan, and how at 27 he began his "education" by purchasing a farm implement dealership.  That began a career lasting 36 years, of which the last 20 were in Medicine Hat.  He and his wife Diane have been blessed with 4 children and 8 grandchildren.
 
He spoke about the "giving back" spirit, in many aspects of the dealership and rural life, and found himself at a Rotary meeting courtesy of Jim White.
 
A wonderful talk, thanks for your contribution to the club and that great presentation.
Reclassification Talk - Gail Halderman Dave Panabaker 2020-01-06 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Social event

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 30, 2019
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The Rotary Club has a wonderful social event to finish the calendar year 2019 and celebrate the halfway mark in this Rotary year.
 
Sgt-at-Arms Mike Christie helped run a "know your Rotarian" game for the tables, and lots of fun was enjoyed.  We learned who didn't have property in Arizona, who had more than 2 tattoo's and who the model train lovers in the crowd were.  (although the last one wasn't a big surprise) There was a "cheap" gift exchange and a lot of fun and some stealing of gifts was enjoyed by all.  A wonderful way to end the year, thanks to the organizers and to Mike for leading the event.  A Happy New Year to all!
 
Rotary Social event Dave Panabaker 2019-12-30 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Friendship Exchange - District 7850

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 23, 2019
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Dan Kammerer, accompanied by his partner Cheryl, participated in the most recent Rotary Friendship exchange between District 5360 and District 7850.  District 7850 is a cross border district in northern Vermont, northern New Hampshire and a portion of the Province of Quebec (around Sherbrooke).  The District includes 42 clubs, with 25 in Vermont, 11 in New Hampshire and 4 in Quebec.  The exchange took place from Oct 5 thru Oct 19, 2019.
 
 
Dan spoke about the activities associated with a Friendship exchange, which stresses the Fun and Fellowship side of Rotary membership.  You are constantly on the move and see both "touristy" things and many behind the scenes things that tourists wouldn't be allowed access to.  It is entirely in keeping with the current Presidential motto that "Rotary Connects the World".
 
There are currently two separate District 5360 trips in the works for later this year to Brazil, and Dan spoke about the process within District 5360 for qualifying for one of the exchanges.  The work of hosting incoming groups, and participating in exchanges is scored and the clubs work counts toward participation.  More information is available on the District website https://rotary5360.ca 
 
 
Dan also spent a little time mentioning Rotary Fellowships, which are another social aspect of membership.  Rotary Fellowships are international groups for Rotarians that share a common passion. Being part of a fellowship is a fun way to make friends around the world, explore a hobby or profession, and enhance your Rotary experience.
 
Much more information about Fellowships are found on the Rotary International website https://www.rotary.org/en/our-programs/more-fellowships 
 
 
Rotary Friendship Exchange - District 7850 Dave Panabaker 2019-12-23 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Exchange student - Maddy Caparini

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 16, 2019
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It was wonderful to have Maddy Caparini with us today, to give us her presentation about her year in the Republic of Czechoslovakia.  She was only 15 when she embarked upon her life changing experience and she spend the 2018 - 2019 school year in Trebic, Czech Republic.  This community is about 2 hours from Prague, but she truly enjoyed the community.  She was hosted by a small Rotary club, with only about a dozen members but they had three different Rotary exchange students that year.
 
 
Trebic has a terrible history from WW2, it was once one of the largest Jewish populations in Europe but was basically cleared out during the war and very few family's remain.  It is full of UNESCO World Heritage sites, they have many many churches and castles....Maddy really loved it!
 
 
She had 3 host families, in a variety of locales while she was there.  She did many presentations in her school about Canada, and made many new friends.  She showed photos of all of the host families, of the food that was popular, of her classmates and her various trips.  This particular District hosted 94 Exchange students, we will have 12 in our District this year according to Brian Robinson, who was her outbound councilor.   Maddy especially enjoyed her Eurotour, which is the District trip through France, Spain and Italy.  She showed many great photos.
 
Maddy was emphatic that she thanked Rotary, particularly her sponsor club which was Saamis - Medicine Hat, for this life changing experience.  She is very grateful for the time and money spent on her behalf and she promised to be involved with Rotary in the future.  She was thanked by President Margie.
Rotary Exchange student - Maddy Caparini Dave Panabaker 2019-12-16 07:00:00Z 0

Minute People today

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 09, 2019
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There were a long list of Minute People today, so it developed into a separate section of the Newsletter.
 
  • On behalf of Past President Chris, President Margie mentioned that the club Past Presidents will be contacted about their suggestions and recommendations for the next President-elect, to follow Mark Sorenson in the leadership of the club.  Please be thinking about candidates to take on this role.
  • Margie also reminded Rotarians to work hard on selling their Club 1000 tickets, so we are in a good position at the start of the year.
  • Ken Zollner mentioned that he, Sharon, Don Davis and Don's son Matt worked at the Co-op Christmas Party on Saturday and sold 50/50 tickets for their raffle.  They earned a $500 donation to the Rotary Music Festival, great work and thank you.
 
  • Teresa Schile, our Community Service (International) Director had two minutes;
    • First about our current project in Sri Lanka to assist in the dentistry to elder patients.  The first 6 have entered the program and the expectation is between 275 and 300 are hopefully going to be helped.
    • Second, that the International Committee is working on a new Indian project, with some of the contacts that our club used on previous projects.  An opportunity to go on a fact finding mission using District Travel grants in being explored, so stay tuned for that.
  • In keeping with the International Project theme, Wayne Chesley is going to do a presentation on the clubs previous 3H project in India on January 20th.  Wayne accompanied Sandy Mackay on a tour of that work about 8 years ago and has seen the "good done in the world" first hand, should be a great session.
  • Dave Stalwick is looking for a few more floor workers for the "Christmas" bingo on Monday evening, December 23rd.
  • Heather Bach advised that the delivery of the Christmas stockings will be at the Masterpiece Seniors facility on Friday December 13, beginning at 2:00 pm.  Please meet there, about 6 - 8 people are needed for the delivery service.
  • Heather also mentioned that she has set up a "Private" - Members only discussion group on Facebook to allow additional discussion and debate on changes to the club.  If you have a Facebook presence, please join in.....
  • Milan Vujovic mentioned that our most recent Rosebowl winner at the Music Festival, Soren Lorentzen will be holding a recital on Sunday afternoon, January 26th at 3:00 pm.  It promises to be a great afternoon of music, with several other Friends of the Music Festival.
 
  • Terry Brekko introduced himself to new and old members alike, he's been away from the club meetings for a few weeks and wanted to remind everyone that January is our push for patron donations and advertising for the Music Festival.  He hopes to have the packages available next week and because the Festival starts on March 1st, the funds need to be gathered in January.  Also, this is "ABSOLUTELY" his last year to be involved in this, after a 30 year run and he is looking for someone or someone(s) to take on this role.
  • Dave Panabaker presented President Margie with a certificate from Rotary International, thanking our club for our support of the End Polio fund.
  • Dave also mentioned that the club has been approached by the Children's Wish Foundation of Alberta, who are in urgent need of several casino workers for Thursday December 19th and Friday December 20th.  They particularly need an alternate GM for both afternoon shifts (3 pm - 9 pm) and a count room person for the second day at 1:00 am.  Please contact april.stallings@childrenswish.ca if you can help them out.
  • As a "post meeting" minute, Adolf Seiler phoned in the following.
    • The top three donation spots were;
      1. Walmart - Tim Hortons entrance.
      2. Northlands Co-op.
      3. Superstore.
    • Our club raised a total of $2,648 for the Salvation Army on Nov 30th, which equates to $47.28/hr for every one of our 56 volunteer hours.  Great work, and a BIG thank you from Adolf for all the cooperation and the volunteers.
  • Dave Panabaker also showed a series of photos of Rotarian Roger Roy at work in Mexico.  Roger was working with "Angels of Mexico" to build a playground and then with local Rotarians and members of the Saamis Rotary Club to bring wheelchairs and walkers down to Mexico.  His note read "it's just another day in paradise", but it looked like lots of hard work.
 
Minute People today Dave Panabaker 2019-12-09 07:00:00Z 0

Community Foundation Presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 02, 2019
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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Susan Edwards, the Assistant Director of the Community Foundation of South East Alberta (CFSEA).  Susan was introduced by Club Service Director Heather Bach and spoke about the recent distribution from the Foundation, to a total of 39 agencies and $207,000 in the fall of this year.
 
Susan also spoke about the expansion of the Foundations reach, recently the "give where you live" theme has been taken up in Brooks & District, 40 Mile and Prairie Crocus (the Oyen area).  Separate rural community funds have been set up for these areas, with dedicated coordinators in each area.  She was hopeful that Cypress County will also have a specific fund and administrator soon.
 
Susan also acknowledge the role of RBC, who have funded significant grants to youth led initiatives.  Approximately $60,000 has been donated to fund this aspect of Foundation work.
 
Susan revealed that new endowments had been set up specifically for the Mustard Seed, and for HALO...to assist them in gathering funds and providing long term financial support.  The Foundation has $14.4 Million dollars under administration with a goal to surpass $15 Million by 2020.
 
Rotarians are reminded that our club maintains an endowment at the Foundation in support of the Rotary Music Festival.  That fund currently contributes over $8,000 to cover the operating cost of the Festival.
 
Susan was thanked by Acting President Melanie and presented with a Medalta mug with thanks!
 
Community Foundation Presentation Dave Panabaker 2019-12-02 07:00:00Z 0

Strategic Direction Discussion

Posted by Mike Christie on Nov 25, 2019
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The presentation and subsequent discussion were the main elements of today’s meeting.  PE Mark Sorenson described a process the Board had been going through to consider the future direction and culture of the Club.  Mark referred to a recent report from the Rotarian (available at each table) profiling a Club in Halifax which had gone through considerable change.  Truly embracing change and remaining open minded and accepting diversity might be a challenge for some. Mark’s own motivation for joining Rotary was related to enjoying the lunch style meeting and a desire to give something back to the community, but he recognized the need to ensure the longevity of the Club by becoming irresistible to new and younger members.
 
    
A Think Tank had been created by the Board and had taken several weeks to research and collect information and report back to the Board.  In essence the report provided a number of alternatives described by Mark and Gail (in no particular order of priority) as:
  1. Maintain Club as is – no change – do nothing
  2. Modify Existing Club to appeal to Younger Members
  3. Completely Revamp Existing Club to an Innovative Culture
  4. Maintain Existing Club as is and Start a Satellite Club/Charter a New Club 
The Board did not have 100% consensus on which alternative might be best and there was obviously a lot to think about.  For example, Mark described the Rotary Music Festival as perhaps needing to be little more independent so that the Club could reduce the current 80% of time and money spent on the Festival.
 
 
There were lots of questions and comments from members including, Dick Bide, Ken Fester, Lisa DesRoches, Sandy MacKay, Kitt Brand, Adolf Seiler, Jan Stalwick, Dieter Brand, Marg Mazerolle, Theresa Schile, amongst others.  Comments and suggestions were related to the need for more of this type of communication with members, making membership as diverse and the process of becoming a member as easy as possible, getting younger members is one thing but expecting to get them straight into leadership roles is quite another, when other things need to take priority in their busy lives.  Live streaming meetings would help those who can’t be present, so as to stay connected.  Rotary ideals and 4-way Test are still a good draw for any age, and different types of meetings would also help.
 
This is a sample of the comments which took the meeting to almost closing time and some attendees needed to leave.  No decisions made but a promise from Margie to hold further discussions on what can be done in the short and longer term, to make our Club more attractive, more diverse and to increase our impact in the community, during the December business meeting, scheduled for December 9th.   A summary of the discussion was sent out to all club members, so absentee's and "snowbirds" weren't missed.
Strategic Direction Discussion Mike Christie 2019-11-25 07:00:00Z 0

Presentation by Chief Andy McGrogan

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The Rotary Club was delighted that Police Chief Andy McGrogan made it to the meeting today and spoke about some of the success's and challenges facing both the Police Service and the Medicine Hat Community at large.  Chief McGrogan was introduced by Rotarian Bruce Shepard,  and welcomed to the meeting.
 
 
Chief McGrogan began his career with the Medicine Hat Police Service in November of 1980, and has a wide variety of roles from patrolman up to the position of Chief, to which he was appointed in November of 2008.  He has also been very active in the community, with a role for 6 years on the board of the Medicine Hat Women's Shelter and as the Alberta representative on the Canadian Chief of Police Council.
 
Andy spoke of the organization he is in charge of, 113 Police officers and a total staff of 150 including the civilians.  He wanted to express his thanks to the community at large, for the general support that his officers receive in their daily duties, and the funding received through City Council.
 
 
Chief McGrogan spoke about the changes that have occurred in Policing through his career, and about several important issues.  The first was the legalization of Cannabis, which he termed a "non-event" so far although he did mention that technology to prove impairment is still not readily available.   He also mentioned with the introduction of "edibles" in the next year, there may be more issues coming forward.
 
He spoke about the opioid crisis, and about the bigger issue facing the community from methamphetamine.  "Meth" is highly addictive and introduces a great deal of social disruption to the community in general.  It has a cumulative effect on all the social services, from police to emergency response personnel to the social service community. 
 
Andy answered a number of questions and was thanked by President Margie Booyens.
Presentation by Chief Andy McGrogan Dave Panabaker 2019-11-04 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Centennial Park  - Tree planting

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 28, 2019
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Past President Chris Perret took the podium to review our last Centennial project, the creation of a park along the Eagle Butte Road in Dunmore to be called "Rotary Centennial Park", and allow the club to plant 100 trees to commemorate our 2018 Centennial.
 
 
PP Chris reviewed the history of the project, and that getting a spot to plant the 100 trees together within the City of Medicine Hat wasn't possible.  We didn't want them spread out throughout the City, as they would lose the recognition of 100 years.  Chris spoke about the new partnerships that this project could bring to the club, and that after a lengthy review of the storm water runoff pond on this property, the County has committed $80,000 to the project.  Our contribution would total $25,000 and would provide a lasting memorial to the 100th anniversary.  It would also complete our commitment to Past RI President Ian Riesley's wish that every Rotary Club would plant one tree for each member during his year.
 
There were a number of questions asked and answered from the club and then the project was approved unanimously by the members present.  We look forward to celebrating the completion of this area in the spring of 2020.  Great work by PP Chris to stay on this idea, through a number of twists and turns.
Rotary Centennial Park - Tree planting Dave Panabaker 2019-10-28 06:00:00Z 0

Meeting News

Introduction of Guests:

  • Lori McKenzie, Office Manager of Rotary Music Festival 

Birthdays: 

  • Jack Snedden               October 26.

Anniversaries:

  • Dale Stein             12 years     October 22, 2007
  • Terry Partis           19 year       October 25.2000

Weekly Draws:  

  • Teresa Schile - won a box of bulbs to be planted in the garden

Club 500:

  • No draw this week.

Minute People: 

 

Ray - A book was gifted to Ray called Adventures in Rotary Service dated November 30th, 1964 he is going to add it to the Rotary Library

Margie - The Club History document should be ready soon

Kitt - Shared the flag her a Dieter received from their trip to Ontario

Don D. - Anne is looking for 2 volunteers to join the South Country Coop Christmas dinner to sell 50/50 tickets.  It will include dinner and a $500 donation.  December 7th 6pm - 11pm 

Sandy Mackay reminded the club that World Polio Day is Thursday Oct 24, he is hosting an education session at the Medicine Hat Library from 4pm - 8pm

 

Meeting News Heather Bach 2019-10-24 06:00:00Z 0

Medicine Hat College update

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 07, 2019
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The Rotary Club was delighted to move their meeting today, to the Courtyard Room at the Medicine Hat College and enjoy a presentation about the direction and strategic plan updates that have been taking place under the guidance of the new Medicine Hat College President, Kevin Shufflebotham.  Kevin was introduced by "Acting President" Gail Halderman, who presented Kevin as the 10th, and youngest, President to hold this role at the Medicine Hat College.
 
Kevin is new to the College but not new to the area.  Both he and his wife Corrine are from this region, and he "loves being at the college".  He emphasized that they are focused on the mandate of the college, to "be the best you can be" and also focused on "the students".  The reality is that MH College is all about the students, which currently has approx 3,350 enrolled in various programs.
The college has been going through a Strategic Planning process, to envision the next 10 years at the institution.  He intends to be here to "see through" the changes that the adoption of that plan will bring.  He reviewed the "SWOT" analysis done as part of that process, the Strength's, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats to this institution and engaged the Rotarians present in discussion of several of those points.
Kevin encouraged those present to take the questionaire at http://www.OurTimeMHC.com to "Think, Discuss and Engage" about the future needs in the region and where the programs of the Medicine Hat College can at add to the value chain.  He spoke about the need to "refocus" their programs for the next 10 years and he spent some time comparing the situation here to SAIT or Olds College.
 
Kevin was thanked by Rotarian Terry Cooper ( a former VP Academic at MHC) and presented with a token of the club's appreciation.  He answered a number of questions and directed other questions to some of the senior college staff who were present.
A great lunch meeting, and we wish Kevin and the college staff every success in the future.
Medicine Hat College update Dave Panabaker 2019-10-07 06:00:00Z 0

Music Festival Impact - Jason Vaz

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Sep 23, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Dr Jason Vaz to the podium.  Jason was a performer in the Rotary Music Festival from 1990 to 2005.  He began competing at age 3, and was twice runner up in the Rosebowl competition. After graduation from high school he started to focus on dancing and ended up pursuing dance professionally with Citie Ballet (Edmonton), Alberta Ballet, Ballet Jorgen Canada and several other companies.
 
He has subsequently pursued an undergraduate  Biomedical Science degree at the University of Calgary, and completed his MD at the University of Alberta.
 
 
He is completed his final year of Anesthesia Residency at the U of A and did a year long fellowship in Pediatric Anesthesiology at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.
 
His words said it best, " I owe so much of my current success to my formative years in the Rotary Music Festival.  I believe all those years of practicing endlessly, balancing multiple activities and dealing with performance pressure, set the foundation for me to be able to pursue music, dance and medicine. "  "Looking back, I am so grateful to the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat for their continual support of the Music Festival.  I really believe that studying music opens countless doors and that my childhood in Medicine Hat would not have been the same had I not been involved in music".
 
 
Dr Vaz spoke about the lifelong friendships he maintains with fellow performs and the self confidence he still feels to this day.
 
The whole club wishes Jason well, as he takes up his new position at the Children's Hospital in Saskatoon, in their Anesthesiology department.
 
 
Music Festival Impact - Jason Vaz Dave Panabaker 2019-09-23 06:00:00Z 0

Honorary Paul Harris Fellowship - Malcolm Sissons

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Sep 23, 2019
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DG Christine Rendell and PDG Sandy Mackay were pleased to present Malcolm Sissons with an honorary Paul Harris Fellowship on behalf of the Medicine Hat Rotary Club.
 
 
Sandy Mackay advised that this is the second recognition of Malcolm made by this club, the first going back to 1976, when then DG Leo Lewis recognized Malcolm for his work in the community and with a Post Graduate Fellowship in Grenobal, France.  Malcolm spoke about being newly married and spending a year in France.
 
The presentation touched on many Heritage and Historical topics within the community which Malcolm has been active in.  Malcolm is well known in the community for his weekly historical article in the Medicine Hat News and being a "go to" authority on historical places and buildings within the local area.
 
 
Malcolm's work and community spirit will be recognized later this year with an Alberta Award of Excellence.
 
All the members of the club congratulate him on his achievements and thank him for his service to the community.
 
 
 
 
Honorary Paul Harris Fellowship - Malcolm Sissons Dave Panabaker 2019-09-23 06:00:00Z 0

Official Visit of the District Governor

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Sep 23, 2019
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed Christine Rendell, District Governor for 2019 - 2020 to the meeting today.
 
 
DG Christine was introduced by local AG Dave Panabaker, and told us about her experience with Rotary starting with induction in 1999.  She has now been a member of the Calgary East club for 20 years, and she and her husband Brian have been partners in the Rotary journey.  She joined while she worked for ATB Financial, as an opportunity to give back to the community and network through the business community. She has been President of the Calgary East club and a member of the District 5360 Board. 
 
She is working this year under a motto of "Connect, Communicate and Collaborate".  She has been part of the Calgary East "Police Reading in School" program, mentoring youth and building homes in Mexico.  She believes the time is exactly right for Rotary, for growing it with our increasing diverse community and she read the new "Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement".  There is room for everyone in Rotary.
 
Rotary's Strategic Plan has four pillars
  1. Increase our impact.
  2. Expand our Reach.
  3. Enhance Participation and Engagement.
  4. Increase our Ability to Adapt.
DG Christine thanked everyone for all they do for Rotary, and provided a summary of upcoming events and activities in the District.
 
Christine was thanked by President Margie, and given a Rotary "Half-full" cup to commemorate her visit.
Official Visit of the District Governor Dave Panabaker 2019-09-23 06:00:00Z 0

SERnina presentation by Danielle Skogen

Posted on Sep 16, 2019
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed Danielle Skogen ( a new member of MH Sunrise Rotary) to the club meeting and the podium today, to speak about her experiences in Guatemala.  Danielle is the founder of an NGO in Guatemala named SERnina (which means "to be a girl" in Spanish).
 
 
Danielle grew up in Medicine Hat from the age of 5, and graduated from high school here in town.  A teacher by trade, Danielle has always believed that education and empowerment are the keys to ending poverty.  She picked up stakes at age 23 and moved to Guatemala.  Danielle met many resilient, brave and hopeful young girls in the countryside, and took action to help them reach their full potential.  Alongside REALgirl Empowerment Program, Danielle co-founded SERnina to provide leadership, self-esteem and empowerment workshops to at-risk girls and women.  It has reached thousands of girls and is growing every year.
 
 
Danielle has moved back to Medicine Hat and is now launching a life coaching practice to support local women and girls and help them become the best version of themselves.
SERnina presentation by Danielle Skogen 2019-09-16 06:00:00Z 0

Presentation by Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Sep 09, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Lisa Kowalchuk to the meeting today.  Lisa has been the Executive Director of the Chamber for slightly over 10 years, and has been a significant force in the Chambers amazing performance at the Provincial and Federal levels.  The local chamber has been recognized as the Alberta "Chamber of the Year" 3 times in the last 10 years, most recently in 2018.  The Chamber of Commerce has been around since 1900 and has had to adapt to grow and prosper in this changing society.  there are 870 members of the MH Chamber, and over 25,000 in chambers across the province.
 
 
Lisa mentioned that one of her current Board members is Rotarian Sara Koch, who was in the audience and she acknowledged the contributions of a number of Rotary members to the success of the Chamber over the years.  She talked about the goals of the Chamber, some of the challenges of a small chamber and a number (and it was a significant number) of accomplishments over the past year.  Lisa spoke about the makeup of the chamber and how that has shifted over the past 10 years.  As well, they want to be a credible advisor, to their members and to governments at all levels.  That means their approach has to be balanced and to the benefit of the entire community.
 
 
Lisa answered several questions from the audience and was presented with a Rotary "Medalta" half-full coffee mug by Mike Christie.  Lisa's presentation in "pdf" form is available on the club website under club documents and presentations.
Presentation by Medicine Hat & District Chamber of Commerce Dave Panabaker 2019-09-09 06:00:00Z 0

Short Term Youth Exchange

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Aug 19, 2019
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It was a pleasure to welcome our current Short Term Youth Exchange participants, Karli Mardian from Medicine Hat and Bennedetta Minello from Italy to the meeting today.  Bennedetta is on the reciprocal portion of the exchange, after her family entertained Karli in Italy earlier this summer.
 
The girls were introduced by Rotarian Neil Mardian, and provided photographs of both halves of the exchange.  Karli spend 3 weeks in Italy and Bennedetta has one week remaining on her three week visit.  The girls have had a wonderful time, and everything has gone swimmingly (lots of water sports photos).  
 
 
Information about Youth Exchange can be found on the District Youth Exchange website http://www.yex5360.org 
 
Short Term Youth Exchange Dave Panabaker 2019-08-19 06:00:00Z 0

Adventures in Citizenship

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Aug 12, 2019
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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome two members of last years Interact Club, Azin Dolatabadi and Rhea Nayak, to the meeting today.  The girls were introduced by Theresa Eisenbarth, who is the club representative to the Medicine Hat High School club.  Both girls attended this years edition of "Adventures in Citizenship", in Ottawa.  They began their presentation by speaking about the travel and meeting their host families.  The event was attended by over 220 students from all across the country, for three days of education and fun learning about may aspects of government, and some of the things that make Canada great.
 
 
They visited the Canadian War Museum, got a tour of the west block of Parliament, meeting both the Speaker of the House and the Privy Clerk.
 
They witnessed an emotional citizenship ceremony and toured the Shaw center learning about the challenges of the indigenous peoples and trying some traditional foods.
 
Both girls are headed to university, attempting degrees in science.  We wish both the girls well in their future endeavors and thank them for their community service through Interact and their great presentation.  The girls were presented with Rotary mugs by President Margie Booyens.
 
Adventures in Citizenship Dave Panabaker 2019-08-12 06:00:00Z 0

Honorary Club Membership - Herman Wahl

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 29, 2019
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In a special presentation today, Past President Chris Perret announced that Herman Wahl was being made an Honorary Member of the club.
 
Herman joined the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat in 1962, and took the Rotary charge to heart, participating in club projects and activities for 57 years.  He demonstrated the qualities of head and heart that epitomize being a Rotarian and has been an inspiration to many in the club.  Herman was introduced to the club by Bill Sellhorn ( Anne Carrier's father) and was given the classification "flower farmer" to fit with his greenhouse industry business.
 
 
In 2019, Herman's health has been a challenge and he needed to reconsider active membership and took a leave of absence.  The Membership Committee and the Rotary Board did not want to end over 57 years of dedicated service and fellowship and therefore converted his membership to honorary.  What that hopefully means is all the fun and less of the work.  We also hope to see Herman and Fran at future Rotary events and we all thank Herman for his many years of service to Rotary and the Community.
 
Honorary Club Membership - Herman Wahl Dave Panabaker 2019-07-29 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary in the Park with the District Governor

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 22, 2019
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The Rotary Club celebrated the start of this years Stampede Week with our annual picnic in the park.  Rotary Park was one of the major activities of the Rotary Club in the last century, and the site of the old pool has been preserved as a beautiful urban park and greenspace.
 
 
It was a special pleasure this year to welcome this years District 5360 Governor, Christine Rendell and her husband Brian Carnahan.  Christine is a native of Bishop's Falls, Nfld and had a long career at ATB prior to retiring in 2006.  She and Brian have two sons and one 3 year old granddaughter.
 
 
Christine spoke very briefly, and shouted above the traffic noise from Maple Ave, about her love of Rotary, some of her past experience and her general views on this year.  She will be returning in September to a regular club meeting for a more formal presentation of this years theme and some Rotary International updates.
 
 
Everyone enjoyed a wonderful meal, catered by Skinny's Smokehouse and organized by Jillian Koch (many thanks for a great job Jillian!!).  Also congratulations to the winners of the "dress up for stampede" contest, both Anne Carrier and Stan Sakamoto took home door prizes.
Rotary in the Park with the District Governor Dave Panabaker 2019-07-22 06:00:00Z 0

Presentation by Katarina - New Generations Service Exchange

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 15, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Katarina Braess, our visiting New Generations Service Exchange student to the podium, who provided a summary of herself and of her community.
 
She began her presentation by thanking everyone for providing her with this opportunity, she is having a wonderful time and learning a great deal about her chosen profession.
 
 
Katarina began by speaking about her hometown, Regensburg which is in Southwestern Germany in Bavaria.  She believes that Bavaria has the most distinctly German culture of any of the area's of Germany.  The City means "Castle at the Rain" and has a population of 150,000.   It has history dating back to the Roman Empire, and the medieval inner city is a UNESCO world heritage site. She is sponsored for her exchange by Rotary Millenium Regensburg. 
 
Katarina is almost 19, has graduated from high school and is taking a gap year before entering university.  Her high school was founded in 1505 and her description of high school sounds like a lot more school and a lot less sports than in North America.  She also described her previous participation in the Short Term Exchange program and their family had a Long Term Exchange student from Brazil stay with them.
 
In her gap year she has taken a French language course in Paris, spent time in Morocco doing social service work and has done legal internships in Regensburg and Munich.  Definitely not an idle year, that's for sure.  She will be returning home in late August, with intentions to attend university close to home.
 
We wish her all the best in her future endeavours.
Presentation by Katarina - New Generations Service Exchange Dave Panabaker 2019-07-15 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Friendship Exchange

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 08, 2019
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed fellow Rotarians from District 9930, which takes up the middle of the North Island of New Zealand.  This was the second half of a Friendship Exchange that saw a number of District 5360 Rotarians in New Zealand last year.
 
The visitors were treated to a tour of City Hall, where they met Mayor Clugston, and also enjoyed a visit to Medalta.
 
 
 
 
On Friday evening, a special club meeting was held and Michael Nightingale and Carl Tookey from the New Zealand group presented a great slideshow on District 9930 and the flora/fauna of New Zealand.  A great time was had by everyone and we wish the group well in their further travels over the next 10 days.
 
 
 
Rotary Friendship Exchange Dave Panabaker 2019-07-08 06:00:00Z 0

2019 - 2020 Club Budget

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 08, 2019
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Club Treasurer Gail Halderman presented the 2019 - 2020 Budget for approval by the club.
 
The meeting had two components, as the first half was related to Gails presentation and the second PP Chris Perret spoke about issues with our Club 500 draw, and the need to think carefully about our fundraising activities and how we can work together with the Music Festival Society to improve our ability to fundraise.
 
A number of questions and suggestions were put forward by Rotarians on both topics and the budget was ultimately approved.  A copy of the budget can be found under "Club Documents" in Clubrunner.
 
 
2019 - 2020 Club Budget Dave Panabaker 2019-07-08 06:00:00Z 0

Introduction of Katerina Braess, NGSE student 

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 08, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Katarina to the meeting and our club on Canada Day.  There was a welcome party at Skinny's Smokehouse, which was attended by host families and other Rotarians.  Great food and wonderful to see so many folks out to introduce themselves and visit with our first New Generations Service Exchange student
 
 
 
Katarina was also put to work at the Salvation Army Hot Meal program on Wednesday evening.
 
Introduction of Katerina Braess, NGSE student Dave Panabaker 2019-07-08 06:00:00Z 0

Induction of 2019 - 2020 Rotary Executive

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 24, 2019
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The annual Executive changeover was completed at the meeting, with the installation of Margie Booyens as President, and the induction of the 2019 - 2020 Board of Directors.
 
 
PP Karen Blewett, who has been working on our Strategic Plan update, spent some time speaking about the "experiment" we are undertaking with this board, developing revised member roles and creating several "at large" Directorships, to allow us to be more flexible and nimble.
 
We all wish the Board success and the changes will be reviewed in December at the AGM.
 
 
 
 
Induction of 2019 - 2020 Rotary Executive Dave Panabaker 2019-06-24 06:00:00Z 0

Welcome to New Member - Rod Dal Collo

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 24, 2019
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It's a great privilege of Past President's to induct new members to the club, and today PP Mike Christie read the induction for Rod Dal Collo.  Rod is a former Rotarian, with previous service at both Calgary Olympic and the Hinton Rotary Clubs, but has been away from Rotary for a few years.  Rod is a native of Redcliff, and has returned to this area in his profession as a lawyer with Stringam LLP.
 
 
Rod's sponsor was PP Dave Panabaker, who told the club a little about Rod and who worked with Rod's father at the City of Medicine Hat Gas Utility.  President Chris Perret presented Rod with his member pin and the certificate of membership
 
We all welcome Rod to the club and look forward to his contribution to the club and to the community.
Welcome to New Member - Rod Dal Collo Dave Panabaker 2019-06-24 06:00:00Z 0

Presentation of Paul Harris Fellowships

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 19, 2019
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PDG Sandy Mackay was pleased to present two Rotarians with recognition of contributions to the Rotary Foundation, with Paul Harris Fellowships.
 
First, because the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat is a 100% PHF club, Sandy presented Lisa DesRouches with her first PHF, as a new member and for her enthusiastic participation in the club since joining this year.  Great work and thank you.
 
 
Sandy then presented Honorary Rotarian Sieg Kappler with a Paul Harris pin with 5 sapphires, to recognize his continuing contribution to the Rotary Foundation.  We all benefit from these contributions with funds returned through the District and Global grant programs that allow Rotary to "do good" in the world.  Thanks Sieg!
 
Presentation of Paul Harris Fellowships Dave Panabaker 2019-06-19 06:00:00Z 0

Honorary Paul Harris Fellowships

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 10, 2019
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Marg Mazerolle took the podium and presented the work of a small committee which has been tasked with selecting community members for Honorary Paul Harris Fellowships.  This form of Paul Harris Fellowship (PHF) is an honorary recognition by Rotary as a way to say "thank you" to an individual for their contributions to improving the quality of the life in the community.
 
 
The committee recommended two names, which were voted on by the members present and approved unanimously.
 
Because this award is done confidentially, the two individuals will now be approached and arrangements made to make the presentations.  Thanks to the committee for their work, they have come up with two worthy recipients.  Names to be announce once confirmed.
Honorary Paul Harris Fellowships Dave Panabaker 2019-06-10 06:00:00Z 0

Induction of Neil Mardian

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 10, 2019
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The club is always thrilled to welcome a new member to the Family of Rotary, so Past President Doug Fleming and sponsor Mark Sorenson were pleased to induct Neil Mardian into the club, and present him with the pin and membership certificate of a Rotarian.
 
Neil is a co-worker of Mark's at TD Canada Trust in their financial planning group.
 
We welcome Neil to the club, and look forward to helping him contribute to the life and vibrancy of this community and the world.
Induction of Neil Mardian Dave Panabaker 2019-06-10 06:00:00Z 0

Humboldt Strong - D5550 Scholarship winner

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 10, 2019
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The club was very proud to welcome Michael Clark, this years winner of the Rotary District 5550 scholarship in honor of the Humboldt Broncos hockey team.
 
  
 
The purpose of the Rotary District 5550 scholarship is to honor the Humboldt Broncos who lost their lives or were injured in the April 2018 bus accident, and to recognize a Humboldt Broncos player who shows caring for others and demonstrates an attitude of "Service above Self".In order to be eligible for the award, three criteria are in place.
 
  1. A player must be playing with the Humboldt Broncos in his final year of junior eligibility.
  2. A player must demonstrate a commitment to his academic pursuits with a Grade 12 average above 70% or have completed a minimum of 2 post-secondary courses.
  3. A player must have contributed a significant number of volunteer hours in the community while playing for the Humboldt Broncos.
Michael was born in Medicine Hat in August of 1998, and soon moved to Newfoundland where the majority of his family are from. He has a life long love of hockey, playing on a frozen pond in Terrenceville, NFLD when he was just walking and has been at a rink one way or the other for most of his 20 years.
 
 
Michael spoke about winning the award, his community involvement and the lessons this hard year has taught him.
 
All of us wish him the absolute best, as he pursues a degree in Finance at the University of Lethbridge beginning in the fall.  He is a worthy recipient of the scholarship and we are sure he'll do great things in the future.
Humboldt Strong - D5550 Scholarship winner Dave Panabaker 2019-06-10 06:00:00Z 0

Strategic Discussion - Pillars of the Club

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 03, 2019
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The meeting of the club was spent discussing a key strategic decision for the club go forward, that of our key focus areas.
 
 
The club is in the midst of a number of discussions about sustainability and modernization, and for the short term future it is advisable to establish some "Pillars of the Club", which will help define the club both internally and within the community.
 
Chris Perret, Karen Blewett and Heather Bach led a discussion of those pillars.
 
A questionnaire is going out to all club members this week and the intention is to integrate whatever pillars are approved more intentionally into the work of the Rotary Club.
Strategic Discussion - Pillars of the Club Dave Panabaker 2019-06-03 06:00:00Z 0

Interact Meeting

Posted by Doug Fleming on May 29, 2019
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The May 27th Rotary meeting was an evening meeting held at Medicine Hat High School with the MHHS Interact Club.  25 Rotarians; 7 Spouses/Partners; 8 Interact Students and 6 guests were in attendance. The Interact students ran the meeting with some help from President Chris and Sergeant-at-Arms Adolf.
 
 
 
The meeting was opened by Interact Co-Presidents Azin and Michael. Following the singing of O'Canada lead by vocalist Miranda and Noah on piano, a lovely supper was served by the cafeteria staff.  Following supper, Presidents Azin and Michael then explained the proceeding for the evening.  They highlighted the silent auction items and reminded those present to buy raffle tickets for the 10 table succulent plant centre pieces which were made and donated by President Azin's mother.
 
Azim and Sergeant at Arms Adolf then went around putting the touch on all Rotarians in attendance. The proceeds when to the Interact Club's hospital project so no one objected too much to being fined.
 
Interact members Azin, Iqmat and Micheal then presented a Power Point overview of the Hat High Interact Club. The Club has 18 active members and have been raising funds through bake sales and various other activities. They then presented an impressive list of the Club's projects and activities.
 
  • Renovating a room in the Pediatric Ward at the hospital (Main project for the past 2 years.)
  • Helping our Club serve Hot Meals at the Salvation Army.
  • Purple Pinkies for Polio.
  • Bake Sales.
  • Canada Day PopCorn Concession.
Two members of the Interact Club attended RYLA as participants while one went as a Junior Leader. Two Club members also went to Ottawa for the Adventures in Citizenship program. 
 
The Interact Club received funds from the Community Foundation's 'Youth in Philanthropy', to donate to organizations of their choice. They decided to donate funds to Saamis Immigration ($1500) and The  Medicine Hat Health Foundation ($1500).  Cheques were then presented to representative from these organizations.
 
 
Following the cheque presentations, the Interactors showed a short video on their Pediatric room project and the formal part of the meeting came to a conclusion as the winners of the silent auction were announce. Members in attendance then had an opportunity to mix and mingle with these active and enthusiastic Interactor before heading home.
 
During the evening, a number of comments were made to the effect that these Interactors are the future of Rotary and judging from the actions of these students, the future looks bright.
Interact Meeting Doug Fleming 2019-05-29 06:00:00Z 0

2019 Rosebowl Evening

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 29, 2019
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On Monday evening, April 25th, The Rotary Club was very happy to welcome the Lorentzen family to our evening meeting, and hear an amazing performance by the 2019 Winner of the Rotary Rosebowl, Laec Lorentzen.  Laec played two pieces on the cello and was accompanied by Con Shandro.
 
 
Laec was introduced by the 2019 Chairman of the Festival Committee, Milan Vujovic who did a review of the Festival history and talked about recent events.  Laec performed Haydn's Cello Concerto in C and by the modern composer Martinu, "Variations on a Theme of Rossini by Paganini".
 
 
The room was pretty full for the performance and we all wish Laec the best at Provincials.
 
 
 
 
2019 Rosebowl Evening Dave Panabaker 2019-04-29 06:00:00Z 0

TED talk, by Mayor Ted Clugston

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 08, 2019
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed honorary member, Mayor Ted Clugston to the meeting today and enjoyed a quick review of the State of the City.  Mayor Ted is in his second term as Mayor and has now been on City Council for over 10 years.  He started by introducing the current council, and by talking about making Medicine Hat a municipal environment where people want to "Live/Work/Play".  Mayor Ted spoke about the transition from huge capital projects, such as the river flood berms and the Canalta Center to seeing those projects augmented with Private Developments that complement that work.
 
 
Ted spoke about the development of large scale commercial in the City's SE quadrant and the massive new industries such as HUT8, Aurora and Folium.  He also spoke about the "patient" money being invested by the private sector, who see it as a good time to build for a future which is much brighter.
 
 
He talked about the Financially Fit program, which adjusted City revenues for the loss of the large Energy Dividend, and touched on a number of other timely issues.
 
He was asked about Supervised Consumption site, about Utility Bill charges and for an update on the Energy Division exploration program.  Certainly it could have gone on a long time, but Ted had to run to take part in the announcement on a Ronald MacDonald house adjacent to the hospital (a blessing for families dealing with illness).  He was thanked by President Chris for a great talk.
TED talk, by Mayor Ted Clugston Dave Panabaker 2019-04-08 06:00:00Z 0

Folium Bioscience Presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 01, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Ryan Jackson, General Manager of the new Folium Bioscience plant currently under development in Medicine Hat.  Ryan has spent the last four years at the helm of Invest Medicine Hat and been very successful at diversifying the local economy with new industries and many new jobs.  Folium Bioscience was created in 2013, and headquartered in Colorado Springs.
 
 
They are the largest vertically integrated producer, manufacturer and distributor of hemp derived phytocannabinoids in the USA.  They intend to supply their unique 0.0% THC phytocannabinoid-rich hemp oil to 32 countries, to diverse industries including the supplement, cosmetic, personal care and animal heath industries.
 
They employ in excess of 200 people, and will add approximately 200 jobs with the startup of the Medicine Hat facility.  "Not all hemp is created equal" is their slogan and they will be working to develop markets in South America from the local plant.  They will be building a 100,00 sq ft extraction/purification plant and a 70,000 sq foot finished goods facility.
 
Several questions were asked and answered, the audience learned a lot and Ryan was thanked by Mark.
Folium Bioscience Presentation Dave Panabaker 2019-04-01 06:00:00Z 0

Aurora Sun - The "Grass City"

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Mar 25, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Bernard McGillivray, General Manager of the new Aurora Sun plant being constructed in the Box Springs Business Park.  The facility is a huge building, in excess of one and a half million sq ft and when it is fully operational in the second quarter of 2020, will produce approximately 150,000 kg of medical quality marijuana every year.  Bernard shared that weight of product was approximately three and a half million "joints".  He talked about the business environment, which is a transition from a "black market" product to a legal one.
 
 
Bernard spoke about the scope and extent of Aurora, it is positioning itself to be a worldwide force in the cannabis business, and is  focusing on Product R&D to help legitimize the value of their products in the medical marketplace.  The estimated worldwide size of that market is in excess of $70B, so worth going after.  He spoke about the timelines for this plant, with approximately 400 local jobs and touched on the difference between hemp and cannabis.
 
He answered a number of audience questions and was thanked for his informative talk by Gail Halderman.
Aurora Sun - The "Grass City" Dave Panabaker 2019-03-25 06:00:00Z 0

Food Bank, Caring and Sharing

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Mar 18, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Celina Symmonds, Executive Director of the MH Food Bank to our meeting today.  Celina is well known in the community as a former member of City Council, a current member of the Public School Board and her work at the Food Bank.
 
 
Celina began her talk by reviewing some of the history of the Food Bank, which started in 1982 as a method of enuring food security for those who were hard hit by the economic downturn occurring at that time.  They were not expected to last many years, but are still an unfortunately thriving part of our social security net.  The organization has a "Food First" Plan, and have been working with families to provide about 12 weeks of education, to help impress on them the importance of making food a priority.  This has been remarkable successful, with many of the program graduates moving beyond needing the Food Bank, and helping lift them out of poverty.
 
This work has led the organization to propose a Community Food & Wellness Center, with access to a meal with friends, a teaching kitchen for food safety and serving.  As well, the facility would provide contact access for other social service groups, including medical and dental care, as well as contact with organizations like Phoenix Safe house for those driven to the food bank by domestic violence.  Celina played an impactful video of the food bank in action.  She also provided some facts and figures on this proposed 35,000 sq ft building, at a cost of $8.5 Million.  Currently MHSD # 76 has come on board as a major partner and she spoke about opportunities for service clubs to provide facilities or help access grants.
 
A number of questions were asked and answered, and she was thanked by Wayne Chesley with a token of our appreciation.
 
 
Food Bank, Caring and Sharing Dave Panabaker 2019-03-18 06:00:00Z 0

Cypress County update

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Mar 04, 2019
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat welcomed County Reeve Dan Hamilton to the meeting today.  Dan spoke about the large rural municipality which surrounds Medicine Hat and Redcliff and talked about a number of the upcoming projects in the county.
 
 
First, Dan spoke about the great enthusiasm that Cypress County has for the construction of the walking trail connecting the City trail network to the Desert Blume development.  They are thrilled that Rotary is a part of that project and look forward to its start as soon as the frost is out of the ground in July or Aug......(editors note - hopefully not that long).  The other major recreation project is a new boat launch being constructed at the Sandy Point park on the South Saskatchewan River.
 
Also important is the creation of a signalized intersection in Dunmore, at the intersection near the High School.  Construction is expected on this work over the summer.
 
Dan spoke about a number of other projects, probably none more vital to life in the county that water.  The county leadership are developing a water strategy for all of Cypress County.  As well, the support for an equestrian center in Dunmore, and an ice surface at the high school are high priorities.
 
Dan also spoke about a number of interesting green energy projects in Cypress County, including the 91,000 panel solar PV facility at Suffield.  With state of the art solar panels, manufactured in South Korea this facility will be an interesting test of large scale solar power production.  Dan answered a number of questions and was thanked by PP Karen for attending the club meeting today.
Cypress County update Dave Panabaker 2019-03-04 07:00:00Z 0

New Generations Service Exchange

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 25, 2019
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President Elect Margie Booyens was the speaker today.  Margie is helping District 5360 enter a new portion of youth service with the New Generations Service Exchange program.    The program is being led by noted Calgary Rotarian Christina Assan, and provides an opportunity for youth professionals, either during their post secondary education or their initial years as a professional, to experience a cultural and learning exchange.
 
 
The New Generations Service Exchange (NGSE) program is a short term International Exchange program, the objective of which is to create goodwill and international understanding. In addition to vocational experience and cultural immersion there will be the opportunity to take part in international voluntary service opportunities.
 
Two youth adults have taken part already, one from Italy in engineering in Calgary and one from German who is a geologist and was in Drumheller, AB.
 
The program is very inexpensive for Rotary, the applicant is responsible for most costs and there is no youth certification required.  It is intended to help build interest and appreciation for Rotary in the next generation of adults who could be Rotarians.  Margie talked about opportunities and next steps and got several suggestions from the club.
 
New Generations Service Exchange Dave Panabaker 2019-02-25 07:00:00Z 0

Medicine Hat Recovery Centre

Tracey Jangula of the Medicine Hat Recovery Centre was the speaker on Monday and was introduced by Heather Bach. Tracey, an addictions counsellor and  manager with the centre started her talk by reporting that this spring, the centre will be celebrating its 3rd year of operation in Medicine Hat. Tracey advised the need for such a facility was identified a number of years ago, but it took time to find a suitable site and come up with the facility design. Tracey reported the facility on Kipling street was designed to serve the needs of their program.
 
The Medicine Hat Recovery Centre operates 24 hours a day, with an  interdisciplinary teams of professionals.  The facility houses two programs. First there are 18 beds for the Detox Stabilization Program, where clients spent from 3 to 14 days at the centre going through a program to medically manage withdrawal symptoms from the withdrawal of alcohol and other substances. The second are 12 beds for  the Intensive Addiction Treatment Program where patients can spend 4 to 6 weeks in a recovery program. 
 
In addition to the in-house support, the centre provides Outreach support, in the form of a social worker and Addictions Counsellor for people who have left the facility. Tracey advised that the centre operates on a "Reduction of Care Model" and have had good support from the Medical Community.  When asked if she though the program was a success, Tracey replied that she felt it was very successful, not only helping people with their addictions, but also with other aspects of their lives.  She went on to say that people with addictions often suffer from other mental and physical issues and the program has been successful in helping some connect with family, friends and other services in the community, all of which which can go along way to reduce addictions.
 
Tracey then held a question and answer session which generated more interesting discussion and information. Our guest was then thanked by Sergeant at Arms Don Davis who presented Tracey with a Rotary Mug. 
 
 
Medicine Hat Recovery Centre Doug Fleming 2019-02-04 07:00:00Z 0

Introduction to Clubrunner

Posted by Dave Panabaker
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President Chris Perret presented a short introduction to Clubrunner, the software program that Rotary in this District (and many others) use to run their administration, their websites and provide event planning and attendance management.  As well as the PC based program, a new addition to the options available is the clubrunner "app", which is available for download on most major smartphone platforms.
 
 
Clubrunner has a "public" face, as well as a confidential side that is available only to Rotary members.
 
Chris went through the login information, and if any member of the club is having trouble with that, please contact Doug Fleming who can provide your login name and password.
 
President Chris showed the members present the public club documents, as well as the location of the private paperwork, such as member lists, Board agendas and minutes and other Rotary documentation.  He also spent some time showing members the advantages of using the Clubrunner app, which provides contact information for all members.
 
Clubrunner has a great number of valuable features, today highlighted just a few and more will be explained in the near future.  As displayed at the meeting the "Club Hub" button at the top of the website, now contains President Chris's presentation and the information on downloading the app.
Introduction to Clubrunner Dave Panabaker 2019-01-28 07:00:00Z 0

BBB - Top 10 Scams Presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jan 14, 2019
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The Rotary Club welcomed Ron Riemann, an accredited Business Service Consultant with the Better Business Bureau (serving Southern Alberta and East Kootenay).  Ron took some time to explain the origins, funding and purpose of BBB.  The BBB was created in 1912 and now has a total of 113 Bureau's across North America.
 
 
He took some time to speak about the Mission and Values of BBB, which is NOT a gov't agency, gets NO funding from any level of gov't, is NOT a "for profit" business or a regulatory agency.  They are really in the knowledge and education business, for consumers and service providers.  Much more information is available on their website at http://bbb.org/calgary 
 
He outlined the Top 10 Scams of 2017, spoke about how technology is changing the nature of scams and cons, and that law enforcement is likely not to get involved.  He spoke about the $95 Million dollars lost to scammers in 2017 just in Canada, and that they tend to prey specifically on teens and seniors.
 
The top three scams were
  1. Online purchases
  2. Wire Fraud/Spearphishing
  3. Online Dating scams
A great presentation from an authority in the field.  His parting advise, "if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!"  Beware.
 
BBB - Top 10 Scams Presentation Dave Panabaker 2019-01-14 07:00:00Z 0

Medicine Hat Women's Shelter Society presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 10, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed Peggy Revell, Community Education Coordinator for the Medicine Hat Women's Shelter Society to the meeting today.  Peggy is a former reporter for the Medicine Hat News, and has recently taken on the role with the MHWSS to help support their out-reach and support programs for victims of family violence in this community and surrounding area.
 
 
Peggy reviewed the definition of family violence, which is "violence or abuse of power within a relationship where there's trust, dependency and family".   There was a good size crowd at the meeting today, which filled the room and was nice to see so close to the Christmas season.
 
 
She spoke about familiar programs, such as Phoenix Safe House and the 24/7 help line (1-800-661-7949).  She also talked about the "Housing First" initiative, Musasa Second Stage Housing and their outreach programs.  A wonderful presentation, a lot of information and a number of subsequent questions asked and answered.  Great presentation about an unfortunately necessary service in the community.
Medicine Hat Women's Shelter Society presentation Dave Panabaker 2018-12-10 07:00:00Z 0

Christmas  Stockings for Seniors

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 03, 2018
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The Rotary Club took on a challenge to supply 150 Christmas stockings to the seniors at Masterpiece - Southlands.  Led by Heather Bach, the club purchased a number of fun things and at our meeting on Dec 3rd, did an assembly line of "stocking stuffing", to prepare the gifts for delivery later in the week.
 
Sometimes this group can be forgotten at the Christmas season, so hopefully this will brighten many spirits.  Great work all!
 
 
 
Christmas Stockings for Seniors Dave Panabaker 2018-12-03 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Foundation Presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Nov 19, 2018
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Past District Governor, Sandy Mackay gave a comprehensive and informative presentation to the club on the Rotary Foundation.  The foundation is the charitable arm of Rotary, which has a mission to "do good in the world".  The Foundation was created in 1917, by the 6th Rotary International President, Arch Klumph, with the "profit" from the convention that year.  The Rotary Club of Kansas provided him with $26.50.  Today the Foundation administers an endowment of over $3 Billion US dollars and provides in excess of $100 Million dollars every year in grants.
 
 
PDG Sandy went through a number of important Objects of Rotary and how they relate to the Foundation, the Foundations "areas of focus" and some of the efforts to promote peace in the world, including Peace Scholarships, Ambassadorial Scholarships, Polio-plus and the Global Grant process.
 
A great presentation, several questions were addressed and Sandy encouraged all Rotarians to check out the Foundation, through https://my.rotary.org/en . Please sign up and if you wish contribute.  It is the Foundation that we are all a part of, as Rotarians and the funds come back to Rotarians for the decisions on what/where to support.
 
Rotary Foundation Presentation Dave Panabaker 2018-11-19 07:00:00Z 0

Presentation on Prairie Gleaners

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Nov 05, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed James Smith, Board chair of Prairie Gleaners to the meeting.
 
 
James spoke about the history of Prairie Gleaners, about their particular inspiration, a passage in James 6:12 which said "Let nothing go to waste", and that approximately 45% of the fruits and vegetables grown around the world go to waste.  He showed some slides of the carrots, tomatoes, beans, lentils and cabbage that they collect with the truck donated by the Rotary Clubs of Medicine Hat.
 
 
He spoke about their immediate needs, the use of volunteers to prepare about tons of vegetables, to dehydrate the produce and package it for shipment around the world.  They reduce the size of the product by a factor of five and the weight by a factor of eight, without losing the nutrition value.
 
A great presentation about a wonderful ongoing project to capture lost product for the benefit of everyone.
Presentation on Prairie Gleaners Dave Panabaker 2018-11-05 07:00:00Z 0

End Polio Presentation to Interact club

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 23, 2018
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On Wednesday October 17, PDG Sandy Mackay attended the Medicine Hat High School Interact club and presented a slideshow on polio, on the disease itself because all of the students are too young to remember polio as a feared disease, on the Rotary program to end polio around the world and an update on the status of that endeavor.
 
 
The presentation was well received and the suggestion was made that Sandy's talk be delivered to the club at some point in the future.
 
 
The Medicine Hat High School Interact students will be holding a "Purple Pinkie's" fundraiser for End Polio starting on Wednesday October 24, in the common room from 11:45 am to 12:20 pm
 
 
Please come out one of these three noon hours, and support both the Interact students and the Rotary End Polio campaign.
End Polio Presentation to Interact club Dave Panabaker 2018-10-23 06:00:00Z 0

Rotary Music Festival Society - AGM

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 22, 2018
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The main program for this Monday's Rotary meeting was a meeting of the "Rotary Club of Medicine Hat Music Festival Society", the separate, charitable society that is operated by the Rotary Club.
 
Rotarian Allan O'Byrne was President of the Music Festival Society this year and presented the reports, and matters for votes by Rotarians.
 
 
Rotarian Don Davis was Chairman of the  2018 Music Festival, and will be succeeded this year by Milan Vujovic.  
 
Special thanks were made to Don Davis, for his role in Festival operations the last 5 years and to Cathie Catalano, who has had to resign from the society for health reasons.  The club appreciates the great work of these and all the Rotarians who volunteer to manage and operate the Festival.
Rotary Music Festival Society - AGM Dave Panabaker 2018-10-22 06:00:00Z 0

Honorary Paul Harris Fellowship presentation to Bill Yuill

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 15, 2018
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was delighted to recognize the professional and philanthropic achievements of Bill Yuill, with the presentation of an honorary Paul Harris Fellowship.
 
Past President Karen Blewett provided a short history of the Paul Harris Fellowship and some "fun facts" about Paul Harris himself.
 
 
Bill's work at the local YMCA, his involvement in the local hospital Foundation and Cancer Center and his support of the Medalta arts community are all activities that Rotarians admire.  His many decades of philanthropic work in the community as a whole is a wonderful legacy. We all congratulate Bill on his many years of service.  The PHF was presented to Bill by President Chris Perret and AG Dave Panabaker.
 
 
 
Honorary Paul Harris Fellowship presentation to Bill Yuill Dave Panabaker 2018-10-15 06:00:00Z 0

NAV Canada in the Global Air Navigation System 

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Gary Busch, Medicine Hat FSS Team Supervisor provided the Medicine Hat Rotary Club with and educational presentation.  NAV Canada is a private company incorporated under the Not-for- profit Corporate Act.  It was purchased from the federal government in 1996 for 1.5 billion dollars. They support 12 million aircraft movements annually and manage 18 million square kilometers of airspace. They are regulated by federal government on safety performance. 
  • They employee 4,800 across Canada
  • Support 40,000 plus customers
  • Have invested  2 Billion in new technology since 1996
  • They will invest 500 Million over the next 3 years into new technology
Not to mention the environmental impact they are making.  It was a great presentation Thank you Gary!
 
NAV Canada in the Global Air Navigation System Heather Bach 2018-10-02 06:00:00Z 0

Update on YEX outbound from Saamis Rotary Club

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 01, 2018
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Many of the club members will remember Katie Caparini, who was an outbound student to Austria about 3 years ago.  This year, the Saamis Rotary Club has an outbound student, who is Katie's sister Maddy.  Maddy was one of the co-presidents of the MH High School Interact program last year and will spend this school year in Trebic, Czech Republic.
 
She has been gradually learning Czech and will be sending regular monthly updates which will be passed along to our club.  Attached are several photos of Maddy, with her host Mom, at the orientation and with the other Canadians in her area.
 
 
 
 
Here Facebook persona and email address are in the note that went out to the club, please "friend" her if you want to watch her adventures.  She is not doing a blog.
 
We wish her all the best in this life changing experience.
Update on YEX outbound from Saamis Rotary Club Dave Panabaker 2018-10-01 06:00:00Z 0

Interact meeting - Sept 27

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Oct 01, 2018
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Most of the 25 students, our MH High School teacher liaison Sue Withers, and Rotarians Theresa Eisenbarth and Anne Carrier (photo credit to Anne) met last Thursday and there was much enthusiasm in the room.  Two of the students are set up to assist Rotarians at the Hot Meal program and the Interact students will hold a bake sale on Oct 16 and 17.
 
 
Rotarian Sandy Mackay will be speaking to the students on Oct 18 about Rotary International and the polio eradication efforts.
 
The students will be holding a "purple pinkies" fundraiser on Oct 24, World Polio Day.
Interact meeting - Sept 27 Dave Panabaker 2018-10-01 06:00:00Z 0

Update on MH High Interact Club

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Sep 24, 2018
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Theresa Eisenbarth, the Rotary Club liaison with the Medicine Hat High School Interact Club provided an update on the club for 2018 - 2019 with the start of the school year behind us and with some time for the students to begin the organization process.  Theresa and Anne Carrier have been helping get the club organized this year, and they have 15 - 16 diverse and enthusiastic members this year.
 
Currently the selection of Executive is taking place and they have a couple of fundraisers already planned.
 
  • They are running a 3 day bake sale, to coincide with Parent-Teacher interviews.  The dates are October 17th and 18th. Donations of baked goods from Rotarians would be appreciated.
  • On Wed Oct 24, they will be fundraising specifically for World Polio Day by doing a "Purple Pinky" promotion.  All Rotarians are invited to stop by and participate.
They are also hard at work on their Hospital room project.  They had raised $1,241 in 2017-18 and then were the recipients of a $2,000 grant from CFSEA.  So, some painting and window stenciling has taken place and they are working on curtains and furniture at this point.  It is room # 50 on the Pediatrics Ward, and they hope to have a nautical theme for the room.
 
 
Update on MH High Interact Club Dave Panabaker 2018-09-24 06:00:00Z 0

Chief Librarian Ken Feser

Posted by Heather Bach on Sep 10, 2018
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Ken Feser started his presentation with a quick story about his connection to Rotary.  In 1982 he was selected to be part of a Rotary Exchange to Brazil.  He found the experience to be very impactful to his life's direction and he raised the question " How do you measure impact"
 
Three key benefits of Public Libraries:
  • Children entering school are ready to read - thanks to Libraries
  • People are able to gather information and assistance they need to take care of business
  • The Community has a gathering place where connections and resources can be shared
 
The Medicine Hat Public Library
  • Completed the renovation of the theatre this year 
  • Saw 50% increase in program attendance over the last two years
  • Since 2014, the Library funding has NOT kept pace with inflation (CPI)
 
Ken left us with three thanks
  • Thank you for Rotary for supporting the Library
  • Thank you Rotary for your impact on our community
  • Thank you Rotary for allowing Ken to travel to Brazil
 
 
Brenda Lea is a Director of the Medicine Hat & District Food Bank in charge of Fundraising.  She shared with us her vision for their up coming event called "And All that Jazz"
  • September 29th, 2018
  • 6:30pm
  • Cypress Center
  • Tickets can be purchased online andallthatjazzmh.org
  • The theme is 1920's
  • You should go!
Celina Symmonds the Executive Director told us what this event is raising money for.  She told us Food Banks don't work for solving the problem but were created to support emergency food hampers.  The Food Bank has a bigger vision.  A Community Food and Wellness Center can support the whole community and the whole person.  Learn to cook classes, doctors, dentists, Food hampers and more....help them reach their goal. 
 
 
Club Business:
 
  • Chris is going to open the Rotary store again for clothing sales.  Watch for the link coming to email box
  • Motion by Ken Zollner Seconded by   Motion Carried
    • Rotary club of Medicine Hat makes an application to Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commision for a license to run the club 500 Raffle for 2018-2019
 
Notice of Motion regarding the Rotary Trail project
 
President Chris will provide a full presentation at the next Rotary meeting explaining all the details regard the change in the Trail project.
He will also be sharing some back ground information to your email boxes soon.. 
Chief Librarian Ken Feser Heather Bach 2018-09-10 06:00:00Z 0

2018 - 2019 Budget approval

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Aug 20, 2018
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Club President Chris Perret and Treasurer Gail Halderman provided an overview of the Club's financial picture and announced the fees for this Rotary year.  For 2018 - 2019 the fees will remain the same at $230/person.  The presentation stressed the "avenues of service" for Rotary, and showed the cash flow of the club over the next few years.
 
 
There were a number of questions addressed to both Gail and Chris;
 
  • Dave Panabaker asked about the figures related to the Music Festival and the annual output from the Community Foundation endowment.
  • Dave Stalwick asked about the cost of the Rotary Centennial trails project, and whether the approval level of the Board ($1,000) had changed.
  • Jay Chesley asked about the presentation, and had questions about the actual budget presentation.
  • Wayne Chesley asked questions about the presentation as well.
 
As part of the debate, President Chris noted that a copy of the detailed budget, broken down by the Directorships of the club would be available on the club website.
 
After some debate, a motion was made by Gail Halderman, seconded by Roger Roy to approve the 2018 - 2019 Budget, and to set the annual fees at $230.  That motion was passed by a majority of the Rotarians present.
2018 - 2019 Budget approval Dave Panabaker 2018-08-20 06:00:00Z 0

Update on September 2018 RYPEN camp

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Aug 13, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed Kristen Price, one of the Adult Leaders of the RYPEN camp held every fall under the sponsorship of Rotary.
 
Kristen has been involved in RYPEN for 15 years, as a participant, youth leader and now as an adult volunteer.  RYPEN (which stands for Rotary Youth Program of Enrichment) takes place at the South Alberta Bible Camp (SABC) near Lomond on Sept 20 - 23.  RYPEN focuses on students who wouldn't normally get an opportunity for this type of training, those students who are marginal or "on the edge"
 
It builds character and teamwork through a holistic - whole person approach and uses a lot of team based positive reinforcement.
 
Kristen spoke specifically about the "letting go" ceremony, and how it helps kids move forward by dealing with a past issue in a positive way.
 
Please encourage school counselors and teachers, to enroll kids during the back to school period, it can certainly change lives.
 
 
Update on September 2018 RYPEN camp Dave Panabaker 2018-08-13 06:00:00Z 0

2018 Rotary Youth Entrepreneurship Camp

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jul 16, 2018
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The Rotary Club enjoyed a talk by Sean Blewett, who is the General Manager of Community Futures - Entre Corp, and has a senior organizational role in the Alberta Youth Entrepreneurship Camp, which has operated at Eagles Nest Ranch for over 20 years.  Sean spoke about the recent partnership of AYEC and Rotary District 5360, which will add this camp as one of the sponsored youth programs in this District and change the name slightly to Rotary Alberta Youth Entrepreneurship Camp.
 
Sean introduced Ethraim Blair, who was a youth camper in 2017 and he spoke about the activities and valuable outcomes of attending the camp.
 
 
 The program begins every year with training for the Youth Leaders, who are previous campers and they will begin a week of training on August 8th at the Medicine Hat College.  Then approximately 60 campers, from all over Alberta arrive for the camp from August 12 - 18.  August 18th is an important day, it's called "business day" and its when the teams of young entrepreneurs are able to sell their products.  The public is welcome on the 18th, please bring "cash" and the sales go from 11 am - 1 pm.  Sean described it as the only summer camp where you can leave with money....Ethraim's team made over $100 in profits on their mugs and coasters last year.
 
The camp has a big impact on the post secondary performance of these students, those who take leadership roles in their communities or come back from camp and start a business.
2018 Rotary Youth Entrepreneurship Camp Dave Panabaker 2018-07-16 06:00:00Z 0

Executive Changeover - 2018

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 18, 2018
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Because President-elect Chris Perret will be at the RI Convention in Toronto next week, and then on vacation in early July, the club held our annual Executive Changeover meeting today.  President Karen thanked all the Board members for their support through this busy year, thanked those were stepping down and welcomed two new members who will begin serving in the next year.
 
The charge to the President and the Board was read by AG Dave Panabaker and the club thanks everyone who takes on an executive position for the club!
 
 
The 2018 - 2019 Executive are President Chris Perret, Past-President Karen Blewett, President-elect Margie Booyens.  Doug Fleming will stay on as Secretary and Gail Halderman will continue as Treasurer.
 
The Directors for 2018 - 2019 are Teresa Schile - International Service, Glen Presley - Ways and Means, Shann Snedden - Youth and Vocation, Bruce Shepard - Membership, Mark Sorenson - Community Service and Heather Bach - Club Service.  Thanks to all of you for serving.
 
 
Executive Changeover - 2018 Dave Panabaker 2018-06-18 06:00:00Z 0

New member Induction - Krista Lawson

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jun 04, 2018
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It is always a privilege to induct new members into the club, and this week that privilege belonged to Past President Doug Fleming.
 
With the assistance of President Karen Blewett, he inducted Krista Lawson, Classic Valuations into our club.  Her sponsor is President-elect Chris Perret and he was present to say a few words about Krista and to welcome her into the world of Rotary.
 
We look forward to getting to know Krista as time goes on and welcome her contributions to the club and the community.
 
New member Induction - Krista Lawson Dave Panabaker 2018-06-04 06:00:00Z 0

Centennial promotion and Events

Posted by Dave Panabaker on May 28, 2018
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President-elect Chris Perret spoke about the activities of Rotary Week and some of the other upcoming Rotary events.
 
- The Rotary "tent", which was set up at the back of the hall will be used at our Canada Day cake cutting, to showcase Rotary.
 
- In addition, new table covers, a podium cover and a collapsible background have been purchased, to upgrade the Rotary brand at our meetings and our events.
 
- Chris also indicated that he will be working after the Centennial Celebration to re-open the online store for Rotary branded clothing, in case anyone didn't get an order placed.
 
- New flags have been ordered for the Rotary week flag flying at City Hall.
 
- Chris also spoke about the Rotary Float for the Stampede Parade this year.  Because of the Centennial he would like it to be special, and anyone interested in helping out should contact him.  He is trying to recruit volunteers from all three clubs, to make it a collaborative effort.
 
- He would also like to see Rotarians out doing "random acts of kindness or service" during Rotary week.
 
 
Centennial promotion and Events Dave Panabaker 2018-05-28 06:00:00Z 0

Presentation on the Interact Club

Posted by Dave Panabaker on May 14, 2018
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Co-Presidents of Interact, Kara Gilbert and Jaslin Ghotra spoke about the fundraising efforts at the high school this year and about their projects.
 
The club has been quite active, participating in two bake sales during Parent-Teacher interviews in Oct and Mar, as well as Purple Pinkie project to raise money for Polioplus.  They also worked on a "Fall into Winter" fundraising event and are currently setting up "Nickle and Dime" wars, as their last fundraiser of the year.
 
They spoke about completing their international project last year, with the Rotaract club of Esteli, Nicaragua.  They raised $2,000 last year to replace the home of a well known Nicaraguan artist, Don Alberto Gutierrez.  Through the work of the volunteers in Nicaragua, and a local Rotarian who teaches in Esteli, the home was completed last spring.  They were justifiably proud of the impact they had on her life.
 
On April 25, 2018 the Rotary Interact students and their advisors met with Cassie Hider, Major Gifts Coordinator at the Health Foundation to present a check for $1,000 to begin their support for the decoration of a room on the new pediatrics ward at the Medicine Hat Regional Hospital.  This is the first of a series of three contributions to have the room done in a beach atmosphere.
 
The club is participating in the Community Foundation's  Youth in Philanthropy program, by helping decide on and then donate $2,000 from the CFSEA to a worthy charity.  They will also be volunteering at the hospital.  Several students also spoke about Adventures in Citizenship and the RYLA camp.
 
A wonderful program, and a great evening...thanks to all the students for the tour, the meal and the event.
Presentation on the Interact Club Dave Panabaker 2018-05-14 06:00:00Z 0

2018 Rosebowl Winner performance

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 23, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed our 2018 Rosebowl winner, Soren Lorentzen to our meeting today.  He is a 15 year old, Grade 10 student at Crescent Heights High School and performed on the viola for us this evening.  He was accompanied by Ms Elaine Dobek-Shandro on piano.  A wonderfully gifted performer, he did an amazing job and we wish him well at the Provincials and in the years to come.
 
 
 
2018 Rosebowl Winner performance Dave Panabaker 2018-04-23 06:00:00Z 0

Presentation by Youth Exchange student

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 16, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed Carla Ruegg, a participant in the Rotary Youth Exchange program who is being hosted by the local Saamis Rotary Club.
 
Carla is from Schupfheim, Switzerland, a canton in the Entlebuch region in central Switzerland.  She comes from a family of five, both her mother and father are involved in the education system and she has two older sisters, one still in high school and one in university.  She spoke about the differences in the education system, in the way sports programs were delivered and how many students decide on whether to pursue university after Middle school (grades 7 - 9).
 
She explained a little about the system of government in Switzerland , with 3 principal regions and 26 cantons.  The age of majority in Switzerland is 18, after which everyone can vote for representatives in the National and State Councils.  She also spoke about things that the Swiss were known for; cheese, chocolate, army knives and watches.  She misses the extensive Swiss railway system.
 
Carla speaks four languages including German, French and English.
 
A number of questions were asked and Carla provided great responses.  A great visit and we wish both Carla and Maddy well.
Presentation by Youth Exchange student Dave Panabaker 2018-04-16 06:00:00Z 0

YMCA - Strong Kids Presidentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Apr 09, 2018
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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Sharon Hayward, CEO of the Downtown YMCA.
 
Sharon began her talk by thanking the club for our involvement in a community project - with the Life Saving Society, in having a life jacket loaner station at the YMCA.  The Rotary Club has a long history of involvement in swimming and water safety in the community and the Y's proximity to the river made this effort a natural fit.
 
Sharon also spoke about their annual Strong Kids campaign, which is the Y's main fundraising activity.  The YMCA believes that physical activity is essential for everyone, for their health and to reach their athletic potential.  The campaign allowed the Y in 2017 to assist 363 children with memberships, and send 71 kids to camp.  As well, it provided almost $40,000 in community donations to other charities for fundraising activities.  In total approx. 8% of the total membership received financial assistance.
 
She also spent some time talking about other Y programs, such as Get Active and Living Fit.
 
A very well prepared and informative talk.
YMCA - Strong Kids Presidentation Dave Panabaker 2018-04-09 06:00:00Z 0

Canadian Humanitarian - Dick Northcott

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Mar 12, 2018
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was very happy to welcome Richard (Dick) Northcott, who spoke about Canadian Humanitarian, a charitable organization run by himself and his spouse Deborah.  It is an education support program, working in Ethiopia and Malawi.  They operate what was described as a "child centered network", everything done surrounds the child with opportunities.
 
They currently have 10 ongoing projects, with approximately 50 - 70 children in each project.
 
In closing, Dick mentioned that "in one generation - everything changes", and that change for the better should happen in this country driven by it's young people.
 
 
Canadian Humanitarian - Dick Northcott Dave Panabaker 2018-03-12 06:00:00Z 0

Safety City Presentation - Tom Carney

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Mar 05, 2018
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The Rotary Club welcomed Tom Carney to our meeting today, to speak about Safety City.  They work toward improving community safety and injury presentation by education and awareness.  Their primary focus has been through schools, from Kindergarten to Grade 6.  They are a charitable, not for profit organization incorporated in 1981.
Safety City Presentation - Tom Carney Dave Panabaker 2018-03-05 07:00:00Z 0

Program for the Evening Rosebowl Celebration - Joe Chacko

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 26, 2018
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Rotarian Joe Chacko took the podium to encourage all members of the Rotary club to attend the Rosebowl competition on Friday evening, March 16th at the MH College Theater, beginning at 7 pm.   After the winner of that competition is announced, it has been traditional that the club entertain the winner of this competition, at an evening meeting to hear a performance and celebrate the completed Music Festival.
 
That event is scheduled for Monday evening, April 16th, at the MH College cafeteria, for dinner and a special performance.  Please mark it on your calendar!
 
 
Program for the Evening Rosebowl Celebration - Joe Chacko Dave Panabaker 2018-02-26 07:00:00Z 0

Induction of Whitney Ogle

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 26, 2018
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was pleased to welcome Whitney Ogle to the family of Rotary today.  We look forward to Whitney's participation in our projects and learning much from her about aboriginal issues within our community and our country.  She was inducted by a Past President of our club, Dawn Barr and welcomed by her sponsor, Sandy Mackay, Club President Karen Blewett and Membership Director Bruce Shepard. 
Induction of Whitney Ogle Dave Panabaker 2018-02-26 07:00:00Z 0

Lyle Johnson - Emmanuel Foundation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 12, 2018
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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Lyle Johnson, Executive Director of the Emmanuel Foundation for International Community Development (and Ted Cowtan's brother in law) to our meeting today.  Lyle has been the Executive Director of the Foundation since 2007, and prior to that served as a pastor for 27 years at several Northern Alberta churches.

 
 
Lyle Johnson - Emmanuel Foundation Dave Panabaker 2018-02-12 07:00:00Z 0

Kidsport Medicine Hat

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Feb 05, 2018
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The Rotary Club of Medicine Hat was delighted to welcome Connelly Sherwick, a local agent for Wood Gundy, who has been a volunteer with Kidsport - Medicine Hat for the past 14 years. 
Kidsport Medicine Hat Dave Panabaker 2018-02-05 07:00:00Z 0

January Business Meeting

Posted by Doug Fleming on Jan 29, 2018
Monday's meeting was a Club Business meeting aimed at informing the membership of some of the activities happening in the Club.
 
Club Service
First of all, Margie Booyens, Club Service Director gave a presentation of the Structure of the Club Service Portfolio by outlining the various committees under her portfolio. There are a total of 13 committees under the categories of House, Club Information and Special Events Committees. Under the House Committee are the Sergeant-at Arms, Meeting Set-up and Guest Book, Welcoming, Music committees. Under Club Information are Website, Club Bulletin and Social Media, Program, Magazines, Club History and Public Relations committees. Under Special Events fall Dinner Club, Interclub Visitist, Rural-Urban Tour and Parade Float committees.
 
Margie then went on to discuss some of the Positive development that these committees have accomplished this year. Which include, creation of a functioning PR Committee, reintroduction of a Rotary Float in the Stampede parade as well as establishing or updated guidelines for the Program Committees, Speakers and Front Desk. 
 
Finally Margie outlined some of activities which are in the planning stages and will hopeful come to fruition in the future. 
In closing, Margie issued an appeal to all members to review the roster and consider joining a committee or subcommittee to help lighten the load and get things do in the Club.
 
  Centennial Update
Centennial Photo - Dave Panabaker gave an update on some of our Centennial projects. First of all, Dave advised that a Centennial Club Photo will be taken on Monday May 7th. Please mark that date on your calendar and make every effort to attend.  The question was raised if missing members couldn't be 'Photo-shopped in',  and the answer was yes it is technically possible but only for a few and it will require some preplanning. 
 
Centennial Trail Project - Dave then went on to update the Club on the progress of the Centennial Trail Map & Marker project by reviewing the progress to date with the City's Parks Department. The Club has committed $125,000 of our funds plus $100,000 from a Community Enhancement (CEFP) grant and $7,500 from a District Grant toward the project and is reviewing the City agreement. The City recently adopted a sign standard policy and depending on prices may have some impact on the number of maps & marker we can install. Using the City's consultant's cost estimates ($10,000 to $16,500)  the Club should be able to install 6 Trail maps, 6 Markers and 6 Interpretive signs. The final number of each is still under review and we will be looking at which combination of maps, marker or signs will give the Club the best exposure.
 
Below are samples of what is being proposed. (Left to Right - Trail Maps, Interpretive Signs & Trail Markers)
 
 
January Business Meeting Doug Fleming 2018-01-29 07:00:00Z 0

Medalta Pottery Update

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jan 15, 2018
The club was very happy to welcome the "new" Executive Director of the Medalta Clay District, Aaron Nelson.  Medalta is a "World Class cultural destination with a heart of clay", and strives to do four things well:
  • Creativity
  • Learning
  • Community
  • Heritage
Medalta Pottery Update Dave Panabaker 2018-01-15 07:00:00Z 0

Update on Rotary Impact Assessment

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Jan 08, 2018
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As an important part of our recent Strategic Plan, and to provide help in our recruiting activities for Membership, and as part of our Centennial Celebration the Rotary Club of Medicine Hat initiated a Rotary Impact Assessment last year.  The intention was to provide statistics, feedback, testimonials and collaboration for the activities of the club.
Update on Rotary Impact Assessment Dave Panabaker 2018-01-08 07:00:00Z 0

Christmas visit to Cypress View Foundation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 18, 2017
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A number of Rotarians missed our last meeting of 2017 for the very best reason, they were out "doing good in the world".  Specifically they were delivering the Christmas stockings that the club members prepared two weeks ago, to the residents of the Cypress View Foundation (Teeoda Lodge).
 
Almost 200 stockings were delivered at noon on Monday, and it looks like it was a wonderful time.  Thanks to Heather Bach, Adolf Seiler, Joan Sauve and Terry Cooper for brightening the day of the residents.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Christmas visit to Cypress View Foundation Dave Panabaker 2017-12-18 07:00:00Z 0

Santa Claus Fund presentation

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 18, 2017
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The Rotary Club was delighted to welcome Ms Theresa Hardiker, President of the Medicine Hat News Santa Claus Fund Board of Directors as our guest speaker today.
 
Theresa described this year as their most needy year to date.  This is the 31st year of the Santa Claus fund, and their client families increased by almost 25% this year, to a total of 498 families assisted by this organization alone.  Theresa estimated that between the Salvation Army, the Phoenix Safe House, and their fund, almost 100 families received assistance in the community this year.
 
 
Theresa reviewed the assessment and qualification process, and spoke about the attempts to avoid duplication in the process.  The Santa Claus fund provided over $46,000 in food vouchers  and the families could shop in the warehouse, to tailor the  gifts to the age, sex and interest of the children.  Most of the local grocery stores honor the vouchers.
 
Theresa also shared a testimonial from one of their clients, which reinforced the need and appreciation of the service.  She also spoke in general terms to the future, with the new THRIVE program and how these individual funds will work in the future.
 
Great work by Theresa and her volunteers and as a group we are grateful for their efforts.
 
Santa Claus Fund presentation Dave Panabaker 2017-12-18 07:00:00Z 0

Christmas Meeting

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 04, 2017
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After the main portion of the meeting, the club got together and stuffed approx 220 Christmas stockings.  The stockings will be delivered to Cypress View Foundation (Teeoda Lodge) at lunchtime on Monday December 18, as well as at a future date to the St Joseph's home and Carmel hospice.  A great job of organizing the donations by Heather Bach, as well as President Karen and a number of other Rotarians who contributed product and cash to the activity.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Christmas Meeting Dave Panabaker 2017-12-04 07:00:00Z 0

Interact Club News

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Dec 04, 2017
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In the past month, several great things have happened with the Medicine Hat High School Interact club, and it's nice to share them with the Rotary Club.
 
At the City Council meeting on Monday November 20th, the Interact club was presented with the YMCA Peacemaker of the Year award.  After the presentation they were introduced at the Council meeting.  A wonderful evening to celebrate the work of the Interact students, their student advisor Sue Withers and their Rotary advisor Theresa Eisenbarth.
 
 
Rotary Advisor Theresa Eisenbarth, Interact students Grace, Azin and Jaslin
 
 
A number of Rotarians were presented to witness the award and celebrate.
 
 
Also, the Interact students were invited to present at the Medicine Hat Sunrise Rotary club meeting of November 29.  Accompanied by their faculty advisor, Sue Withers and Rotary advisor Theresa Eisenbarth, they spoke about the club, some of their objectives for this school year and their recent project in Nicaragua.
 
 
 
Rotary advisor Theresa Eisenbarth, Interact students Bella, Azin and Jaslin, Faculty advisor Sue Withers and Sunrise President Les Scholly.
Interact Club News Dave Panabaker 2017-12-04 07:00:00Z 0

Business Meeting - November 27

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Nov 27, 2017
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It is the intention of this year's Board, to hold a regular business meeting (closed to guests) on the last Monday of each month.  In that way, Rotary business can be discussed in a regular schedule and any items needing the Boards attention can be dealt with quickly at the Board meeting the next month.
 
  1. The Rotary Impact Assessment is being moving along toward a January presentation to the club.  Jace Anderson is looking for contact information for past Youth Exchange Students and anyone with information please contact Bruce Shepard, Doug Fleming or Karen Blewett.
  2. President Karen will be on holidays "down under" for the December 11th and December 18th meeting.  President-elect Chris Perret will handle both those meetings in her absence.  It was also noted that both the December 25th meeting and the January 1st meetings fall squarely on the holiday, so both are cancelled.
  3. President-elect Chris Perret came to the podium to discuss the notice of motion which was due for a vote today.  In order to consolidate all RC of MH material in one location, the Board has proposed that "Based on an maximum estimated expenditure of $6,000, proposed to purchase a Sea-Can, to be installed in available space at the rear of the Top Hat Bingo Hall, be used to store all the clubs material".  
    • The location would allow accessibility at all times.
    • Sea-Can's by their nature are almost air tight, and should keep out weather and vermin.
    • A nominal fee is going to be charged by the Bingo Society for use of the space, and this opportunity may be offered to other members of the Society.
    • Shelving and containers may be needed to properly store the material.  As well, the possibility of a used container exists.
          Based on the information presented, Chris Perret moved and Terry Brekko seconded the motion.  It was approved unanimously.
 
Business Meeting - November 27 Dave Panabaker 2017-11-27 07:00:00Z 0

Thrive

Posted by Doug Fleming on Nov 20, 2017
Monday's speaker was Karen Danielson, the newly hired Executive Director of Thrive. Karen explained that Thrive is a strategy put together for Medicine Hat and the surrounding region to help put an end to poverty.  Karen advised 1 in 10 people live below the poverty line. This became evident after events like the last flood. With the assistance of research done by  Medicine Hat College students, a number of local community agencies and groups joined together to try to deal with this issue. Thrive's Vision is: "By 2030, Medicine Hat Will End Poverty In All Its Forms and Ensure Well Being For All."
 
 
Karen then went on to outline Thrive's very ambitious task by outlining the organization's Founding Principle, which include the following: Equal rights for all; Person centered and community driven solutions; Ending poverty will take a collective effort and Ending poverty will take some innovation. Karen then discussed a number of Thrive's Key Actions and Priorities before moving on to the group's Moving Ahead plans, which includes; Setting up Thrive; Connecting the community partners; Securing implementation funding and Driving Year 1 Implementation Actions. Karen suggested "it's not just about surviving, it's about thriving."
 
More information about Thrive and its plans can be found on their website: www.thrivemh.ca.
 
Karen then answered a few questions, before being thanked by President Karen, who presented our speaker with a Rotary Mug.
Thrive Doug Fleming 2017-11-20 07:00:00Z 0

Rotary Foundation presentation - Sandy Mackay

Posted by Dave Panabaker on Nov 13, 2017
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PDG Sandy Mackay spoke about Rotary Foundation, the charitable arm of Rotary, and the charity to which all Rotarians belong.  The Rotary Foundation was started by the 6th President of Rotary, Arch Klumpf, who donated the net proceeds of his international convention in 1917, the sum of $26.50 to "Do Good in the World".  Through a century of prudent investment, generous donations from Rotarians and careful management of costs, the Rotary Foundation has now distributed over $3B, for projects in every corner of the world.
 
 
All Rotarians know that the eradication of Polio, is the primary job of Rotary International, and we are down to 12 cases worldwide this year.  So from a modest beginning in 1985, we are "this close" to eliminating that disease from the planet. PDG Sandy spoke about Rotary's hope that all Rotarians would donated $100 each year, to ensure that the work of the Foundation goes on.  Our club has been very generous in donations to the Foundation, and lucky to have 3 members of the Arch Klumpf Society as members.
 
Sandy emphasized his point about doing good in the world, a little at a time, by showing a video presentation of our clubs participation in a 4H project in India approx 10 years ago.  The video can be seen at https://vimeo.com/17165881 . This project is one that our club is very proud of and continues to be a model for International projects with the Foundation.
 
Sandy spoke of his wish to use that model to work more closely with our own First Nations communities, to build some understand and rapport with them.
 
Sandy completed his talk by encouraging all Rotarians to consider the Rotary Foundation as their charity of choice, to the extent that they each can on an individual basis and thanked all of the club for their support over the last century.  A number of questions were asked and answered, and Sandy was thanked by President Karen.
Rotary Foundation presentation - Sandy Mackay Dave Panabaker 2017-11-13 07:00:00Z 0

District Governor Visit

Posted by Doug Fleming on Nov 06, 2017
District Governor Rick Istead was in attendance for his annual club visit and was introduced by Assistant Governor Dave Panabaker. DG Rick started his speech by stating Rotary is the oldest and largest service club in the world and has been Making a Difference in the World for 112 years. He also congratulated our Club for being around since 1918 and looked forward to helping us celebrate our 100th Anniversary in June 2018. DG Rick highlighted some of Rotary's achievements, in particular our fight to end polio through our Polio Plus campaign. In 1985 when Rotary set out to eradicate polio there were 350,00 case of polio in the world, today there are 12 cases in 2 countries and we are "that close" to ending this terrible disease. Rick related a story that when the idea of eradicating polio was first proposed, people said it couldn't be done.  His comment was never tell a Rotarian it can't be done.
 
DG Rick when on to discuss of some of the initiatives being undertaken at the district level. Last year district conducted a Member Survey which was completed by 40% of the district membership. Feedback from this survey was very valuable and the District Executive are working on strategies and actions to  address issues raised. He also reiterated that District Committees are there to serve the local clubs. Rick then touched on the issue of membership and pointed out the fact that Rotary's biggest problem is not recruiting members rather retaining them. RI and District are working on strategies to allow more flexibility in clubs to keep members engaged and appreciated.  
 
Rick then turned to a discussion of The Rotary Foundation (TRF). First of all, he thank our club for being a District 5360 leader in supporting the  Rotary Foundation.  He encouraged more Rotarian to make TRF their charity of choice 'To Do Good in the World'.  In 2016, The Rotary Foundation was rated the #1 Foundation in the world and for the past 8 years has received a Top 4 Star rating from Charity Navigator. 97% of money donated to TRF goes to Rotary projects, with 50% going to Global Grants and the other 50% coming back to our District to be allocated through a variety of District Grants. 
 
In closing DG Rick thank Rotarians for donating their Time, Treasure and Talent to Doing Good in the World. He then suggested we consider registering for the District Conference in Calgary in May and the International Conference in Toronto in June. Apparently the RI Conference in Toronto is closest it will be until 2025 when it will be held in Calgary.
President Karen thanked DG Rick by presenting him with one of our Medalta coffee mugs.
 
District Governor Visit Doug Fleming 2017-11-06 07:00:00Z 0