President-elect Jim Madder chaired today's meeting and also introduced and thanked his long-standing colleague and friend and our guest speaker Ian Howcroft from Orillia who joined us by Zoom.
Shown here are President-elect PA Rotary Jim Madder and Ian Howcroft, CEO of Skills Ontario.
29 attendees enjoyed a fine meeting.

Thanks go out to our co-hosts Kevin Holloway and John Stevenson.
Kevin commenced by projecting a fine Oh Canada performed by a number of Canadian Armed Forces military bands. Thanks Kevin.

Jim Madder acknowledged our presence on First Nation territory and reflected on today being "Great Upheaval Day", the Acadian expulsions in Maritime Canada and how this relates to the upheaval from our current viral pandemic. He asked people to reach out to all, including the introverts in the social spectrum.

Announcement Highlights:
  1. Member M.O. Nelson celebrated his 99th birthday July 23rd...outstanding achievement MO!
  2. The Field of Greens received a matching District Grant of $5000, bringing the donation to $10,000.
  3. Wilderness Discovery Camp at Lake Shebandowan is fully booked and thriving
  4. Canada Club recently met and is working on a Rotoract proposal for a highway clean-up; Peace Day planning at the waterfront September 21st; the Anti-Racism Inclusion Accord response from our club to the City of Thunder Bay; Santa Claus Parade planning (uncertainty re go-ahead there); the 4 Way Essay Contest will be repeated after a very successful 2019 session.
  5. Dew Drop Inn report (D. Silliman) - 350 meals prepared.
  6. A fellowship Survey upcoming (how to proceed in this era .. Mike Nitz).
  7. Arpad Zolyomi is nearing home in Romania finally (M. Diegel)
  8. The first Rotary female president to address "Women in Rotary" this Friday (contact K. Holloway how to sign up)
  9. Jim Madder with upcoming meeting highlight speakers
  10. Past-President John Stephenson joyfully announced his upcoming marriage. Wonderful news, John!

Today, Rotarian Ian Howcroft ( addressed us on SKILLS ONTARIO-Leaders in Inspiring Ontario's Future Workforce.

Ian is the CEO of this 30 year old initiative that started in Barrie Ontario and has achieved great success and is now national (SKILLS CANADA).  One very successful tool employed since the inception is "competitions" which young people flock and get excited such as the Cardboard Boat competition.

In essence this organization encourages young people and their parents to consider entering the skilled trades and technologies.  The “why” is evident: there are major skills gaps which employers need filled, youth experience high unemployment and both sides need to meet.

The mantra is the 3 C's: Cooperation, Coordination and Collaboration
The presentation was inspiring and for many an awakening of sorts to this invaluable resource. All aspects were covered.

The PowerPoint details provided by Ian are outlined in the attachment:

As expected, a relevant Q&A followed.

See for more information.

The club is indebted to Ian for this fine presentation. Jim Madder thanked him on our behalf.

We wish you much success, Ian, in the Covid era, where SKILLS ONTARIO is deftly adjusting in the new virtual learning world.