Upcoming Events
Social event at Bronte's Sports Kitchen
Bronte's Sports Kitchen
Mar. 25, 2024
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Centre for Indigenous Learning Campus Tour
Sheridan College Oakville Campus
Mar. 28, 2024
4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Club Assembly III
Oakville Golf Club
Apr. 08, 2024
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Speaker TBA
Oakville Golf Club
Apr. 22, 2024
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
RCO Charitable Fund AGM
Oakville Golf Club
May 06, 2024
View entire list
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RCO Bulletin March 11, 2024
President Mahendra Shah called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m.
Jean Wettlaufer gave the Land Acknowledgement
Rudy Habesh led in the singing of the National Anthem.
President Mahendra proposed a toast to King George lll and Canada.
George Vincent gave the invocation.
There were 11 club members in attendance with 5 guests including the guest speakers
Mahendra welcomed Jay Ghanem, a prospective member, who had attended an earlier meeting in December.  Bob Dodds introduced his guest, his wife Peggy.
Rudy introduced the nights speakers from the YMCA of Oakville; Kyle Barber President, Carmenza Barriga Lesmes, Manager, Fundraising and Zack Jones, Program Manager.
Kyle has been with the Y for many years with the Y in Toronto, Oakville, Cobourg and Niagara.  He has been the President in Oakville for the past 10 years.
The Oakville Y on Rebecca St (Peter Gilgan Family Y) has a $30M/yr. budget and 550 staff including their child care workers.
During covid, the Y had to switch to virtual sessions for programs like cardio and Parkinson support.  The childcare facilities remained open during the pandemic to care for the children of critical workers like nurses.  They also operated a large vaccination center for the region.
People have been slow to come back to Y since Covid but they are now regaining financial stability.
The Y operates in 120 countries offering programs that provide solutions to address local needs.  In Canada, it is child care, fitness and heath and summer camps.  They are also operating in war zones such as Ukraine, Gaza and Lebanon meeting much different local needs.
Each Y is a franchise but aligned with other Y’s meeting national standards and best practices.
They strive to be the service of choice and the charity of choice and the employer of choice.  They believe that the public doesn’t what they do so they are implementing a new brand identity.  They want to ignite the potential in the community with programs such Swimming and lifeguards, summer camps, sports skills and a newcomer welcome program.  They are also expanding into new areas like pickleball.
The Y was started in 1844 in London England and came to Canada in 1851. Basketball volleyball and racquetball were invented through the Y.  The poppy program, summer camps, indoor pools, Toastmasters and night schools were all started by the Y.
They want to be a place for everybody where everyone belongs.
The childcare program is the largest program and account for 85% of the budget.  They operate in 43 locations in Oakville supporting 4100 children each day and are in process of integrating a $10/day childcare program.
Health and Fitness and aquatics are also big, there are 800 enrolled in swimming lessons, 50 group fitness classes and 60 people using personal trainers
They also have 6 locations for summer camps in Oakville.
At the end of the talk, they distributed their 2023 Impact report to the attendees that highlights all the programs they provide to the community. 
Kyle also thanked the club for last years donation of a power lift for their indoor swimming pool.
Rudy thanked the speakers on behalf of the members present and spoke of his own experiences with the Y in his home country. Other members also added some anecdotes about their connections to the YMCA.
Mike Henry provided an update on the Community Service Committee
The donation guidelines have been updated to allow for donation to charities for their program requirement and not just capital projects.
The committee has made three donations to date
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Halton and Hamilton $5,000
  • For new computers
Food4Kids $5,000
  • for their weekend food programs
  • This money will provide 330 meals to kids on weekend who otherwise would not have food until they return to school
Firehawks Robotic team  $1,000
  • STEM program at Loyola High School
  • Building a robot to compete in a North American robot contest 
There are three other donations in progress
Home Suite Hope $6,200
  • Oakville charity that hopes to break the poverty cycle for single women
  • in the endorsement process.
Support House (District Grant) $5,000
  • provides essential housing and support services for people experiencing mental health and substance use concerns in the Region
  • District grant for $15,000 spearheaded by Ron Gall of RCOW, RCO portion would be $5,000
  • Money to be used to replace a staircase in one of their residences
Darling Home for Kids $?
  • Charity provides a continuum of care in respite, residential and hospice palliative services to children with complex medical needs and their families.
  • Currently being developed
George Vincent collected a few happy bucks but opted not to fine anyone.
Mahendra announced that this was our last meeting of the year at Amica, our April meetings will be back at the Oakville Golf Club. He thanked James Montague for all his help while we were at Amica.
Rudy spoke about the April 6 Club Leadership Training to be held at Sheridan College from 8:00 to 4:00 pm.  It is free with Breakfast and lunch included.  All members were encouraged to register and attend.  Other members spoke of the great value of the seminars and opportunity to meet Rotarians from other clubs.
President Mahendra closed the meeting at 8:20 with a toast to friends and Rotarians around the world