Speaker Bill Obee speaks of the wheelchair distribution project in Cambodia



President-Elect Dave opened the meeting, giving a toast to Canada, Denmark, Mexico, France, Brazil and Rotary International. 

Don Thornton led us in the 4 Way Test and also in Grace.

Acting Sargent at Arms David Rook Green introduced our guests for the evening:  beginning with the lovely Sara, Michael Hyde and Minden Rotarian Bill Obee.

We missed you: Spence Tucker, Bob Craw, Bob Fawcett, John Taylor and Ruth Kuchinad

Queen of Hearts Draw: No one won despite the best efforts of all involved and the pot continues to grow!

 Fines:  Fine master David Rook Green led fines with trivia including: “What was Al Capone’s vocation?  A used furniture salesman!

In addition to fines we had some happy bucks.  Sue, Tony and Girv were all happy about their recent trip to China where they saw incredible sights, enjoyed great camaraderie and learned about a new culture and people.



June 1st: Trails Day

This Saturday is International Trails Day.  The B.E.L. Rotary Trail is part of the celebration.  If you are able to be at the Trail Saturday morning please let Sue know.  We will be “meeting and greeting” and providing snacks to visitors.  Schedule:


10:00 – 12:00: Tony Davidson and David Rook Green

12:00 – 2:00:   Girv Devitt and Susan Davidson


Getting to Know our Local Businesses

Michael Hyde, Pharmacist, started the Village Pharmacy in Lakefield about two years ago.  His goal was to create a full service pharmacy with the “personal touch”.  He worked for Shoppers Drug Mart and was looking for a change and an opportunity away from the large corporate structure.  He has successfully met this goal and offers personal service and a full product line (with home delivery) 7 days a week.  He is in the process of expanding and we will soon be able to find him in the new location on Queen’s St. in Lakefield across from the Tim Hortons.


Evening Program:

Susan Davidson introduced our guest speaker Bill Obee.  Bill is a Minden Rotarian and has served Rotary since 1977.  He has served in all capacities in the Minden Club and works tirelessly to support club projects and fundraising.  At the District level he served at Youth Exchange committee member and chair for 10 years, lead the GSE team to South Africa and then served as District GSE chair.

In his spare time he is seen volunteering at the Minden community kitchen, the food bank, on the Haliburton County Development Corporation, Non Profit Housing Committee and most recently on the Disaster Relief Committee.  He is a man who cannot say no and dedicates himself to serving others.

Bill shared his experiences on the bicycle distribution to Cambodia.  This distribution was sponsored by the Rotary Club of Gravenhurst and supported by other clubs in the district including the Rotary Clubs of Sudbury and Barrie.  During his three weeks in Cambodia more than 1200 bicycles were distributed to school age children who will now have a way of getting to school.  For many, the trek is 10 to 15 km.  As Bill indicated, the smile on the faces of the children receiving the gift of a way to an education was more than enough thanks for the work of the team and “said it all”. 

As well as sharing with us many stories of the children he met, he also shared a little of the country: the good and the bad!  More than 90% of Cambodians live in poverty and the country has experienced wide spread genocide at the hands of the Khmer Rouge.  He also told us of the welcome the team received, the beauty of the country and the kindness of the people.

Bill was thanked by Girv for his inspiring talk, his work for Rotary and for being with us this evening.


Sara’s Minute:

Sara was in Ottawa the long weekend in May for the last YE weekend of her year.  Rotarian Brian took the group to Orillia where they boarded the bus to head to Ottawa via North Bay!  They stopped at the Diefenbunker along the way.  The group stayed at the University of Ottawa residence.  The outbound students received their jackets and gave speeches in the language of the countries they are going to.  The group toured the Museum of Civilization, the War Museum, the Parliament Buildings and the   Supreme Court of Canada.  They also did a haunted tour of the streets and old jail of Ottawa.  Sara had a great weekend but was sad to say good bye to so many new friends!  Please keep Sara in your plans.  Mike and Heather’s phone number is (705) 741-3909

Please Note:  Sara’s birthday is on June 4th and we will celebrate at our meeting next Monday June 3rd.  It is a partners night.



Jacmal:  Don announced that the project with the Rotary Club of Jacmal has been approved and the money donated by our club (and many others) has been forwarded to TRF Canada.  This is great news as getting approval is the hard part.  Once the monies arrive in Haiti the work should begin and PDG Dawn will keep us up to date as to progress.

BBC Dance: July 6th.  Bob Ash has asked us to keep this date in mind and if available to help out either with the set up or the take down and of course come out and enjoy this event! 

Matching Grant Deadline:  President Elect Dave has asked us to consider possible projects for the coming Rotary year and reminds us that the matching grant deadline is fast approaching. 




Date                                        Evening Chair                       Speaker

June 3                                     Girv Devitt

June 10                                   Bob Fawcett

June 17                                   Susan Davidson                      Sara Leth

June 24                                   Al Hitchon

July 1                                      No Meeting


Other Dates to Remember:

May 28:           Board Meeting at the home of Chris Tworkowski

July 23:           Farewell Party for exchange students at the home of Lloyd Graham.  More information to follow.


Monthly Message from RI President Sakuji Tanaka

May 2013

Dear fellow Rotarians,

From the moment I was nominated as Rotary International president, I knew I would choose a theme that would focus on peace. This is why I planned three peace forums – to give Rotarians an opportunity to think about peace, to talk about peace, and to share their ideas on building peace together. The final Rotary Global Peace Forum takes place this month in Hiroshima, Japan.

We hear the word peace every day. But most of us spend little time thinking about what peace is. On its simplest level, we can define peace by what it is not. It is a state of no war, no violence, and no fear. It means that you are not in danger of hunger, or persecution, or the suffering of poverty.

But we can also define peace by what it is, and by what it can be. Peace can mean freedom of thought and of speech, freedom of opinion and of choice, and the ability for self-determination. It can mean security, confidence in the future – a life and home in a stable society. On a more abstract level, peace can mean a sense of happiness, of inner serenity, of calm.

However we use the word, however we understand peace, Rotary can help us to achieve it. Rotary helps us to meet the basic needs of others – to provide health care, sanitation, food, and education when and where they are most needed. It helps to meet the inner needs as well, for friendship, connection, and caring. And Rotary helps us to build peace in its most traditional sense, by reducing the causes of conflict. It builds bridges of friendship and tolerance among people and nations. It helps us to understand one another.

However we define peace, whatever peace means to us, we can bring it closer through service. Peace, in all of the ways that we can understand it, is a real goal, and a realistic goal for Rotary. Peace is not something that can only be achieved through treaties, by governments, or through heroic struggles. It is something that we can find, and that we can achieve – every day, and in many simple ways.

And so I thank you for your commitment to Peace Through Service – and to a Rotary goal of a more peaceful world.