Rotary 25th annual Foundation Golf Tournament 2023-09-01 04:00:00Z 0

Random Acts of Kindness Day 2023

Posted by Britt McKerrow on Jun 12, 2023
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Random Acts of Kindness Day is coming up on Wednesday, June 21st, 2023!  The Rotary Club of Midland will be providing FREE LUNCH at the Midland Town Dock from 12pm to 1pm.  Come on down for some hot dogs, coffee and TimBits.  Kindness inspires kindness so be sure to pay it forward!  See our Facebook page for details.


Random Acts of Kindness Day 2023 Britt McKerrow 2023-06-12 04:00:00Z 0
Student of The Month 2023-01-05 05:00:00Z 0

Guest Speaker: Matthew Lawson

Posted on Aug 24, 2022
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Midland Rotary Club Wednesday lunch meeting guest speaker Matthew Lawson, Interim president and chief executive officer at GBGH
Thank-you for giving an update on our local Hospital.
Guest Speaker: Matthew Lawson 2022-08-24 04:00:00Z 0

Guest Speaker: Karen Mealing

Posted on Jun 08, 2022
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The Midland Rotary Club had the pleasure of welcoming Karen Mealing from the Town of Midland. Karen was kind enough to keep us up to date with the schedule of the Ontario’s Best Buttertart Festival happening this Saturday June 11. We invite you to get out and enjoy the day here in the town of Midland downtown core.
Guest Speaker: Karen Mealing 2022-06-08 04:00:00Z 0
Cheque Presentation: Chigamik Community Health Centre 2022-06-06 04:00:00Z 0

Welcome To The Family!

Posted on Jun 02, 2022
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Our club had the pleasure of inducting two new members this week. The are pleased to welcome
Alex Hamelin and Kim Hacker to the Rotary family.
Welcome To The Family! 2022-06-02 04:00:00Z 0

Random Acts of Kindness

Posted by Britt McKerrow on May 17, 2022
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It's Random Acts of Kindness Day here in Midland tomorrow!  The Rotary Club of Midland will be providing FREE LUNCH at the Midland Town Dock from 12pm to 1pm on Wednesday, May 18th, 2022.  Come on down for some hot dogs and TimBits.  Kindness inspires kindness so be sure to pay it forward!  See our Facebook page for details.


Random Acts of Kindness Britt McKerrow 2022-05-17 04:00:00Z 0
Midland Rotary's COVID-19 Initiatives John DeCarli 2020-04-16 04:00:00Z 0

Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Oct 02, 2019
Former "beloved member" Bill Molesworth introduced Katrina Kreivins of the GBBR (see title).
Katrina spoke extensively and knowledgeably about the logistics and parameters of what the Reserve includes in terms of scope of analysis and the physical area. The main thrust of the presentation is that we are loosing bio-diversity and overall  water populations due to an overall reduction in phosphates in off-shore waters affecting the lower parts of the food web and thus the upper parts too. Overall since 2003 there has been a 98% disappearance of zoo-plankton and other micro nutrients that support them. This affects the next level up, that being the prey fish and thus the predator fish (sport and food source fish). 
Please check out and and you will be surprised and engaged.
Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve Jamie Tripp 2019-10-02 04:00:00Z 0

GBDSS Facility Tour

Posted by Jamie Tripp on May 08, 2019
John Playfair of GBDSS welcomed us to the new high school and took care of the house keeping issues before our physical tour began. First order of business was to introduce "Copper" 1 of 5 therapy dogs that roam the school. The dogs provide anxiety relief for students who find themselves overwhelmed during the hectic school day. 
We were then split into 3 groups and lead around the entire school. It was incredible to find the diversity of programs available as well as the obvious pride that the students have in the school. Several areas are dedicated to aboriginal studies as well as providing outlets for individual expression. The cafeteria is a school run program that teaches and provides the students food needs. Another incredible component was the openness and available sunlight as well as the bentwood internal rafter structure. The only thing missing was the Google Pod Lounge for resting between classes, but give it time. All in all it was a great opportunity to see inside modern secondary education since it's been more than a couple of years for most of us. 
GBDSS Facility Tour Jamie Tripp 2019-05-08 04:00:00Z 0

Caroline Laidlaw HPRC

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Apr 26, 2019
The Club was honoured to be joined by Caroline Laidlaw the director of Huronia Pregnancy Resource Centre. The centre first opened in 1994 and services the area empowering young women in pregnancy education and support. This is a pro-women and pro-life organization that doesn't discriminate in terms of who it supports. Many young ladies are simply in need of guidance and a mother or grandmother figure while other lost and forgotten and need to be coached back to confidence and motherhood responsibilities. 
The Centre acts a a liason between young moms and adoption agencies where needed. The service area is basically the 4 municipalities and Elmvale. As yet they are not a housing facility but would love to be able to offer that in the future. The centre relies on private donations as they are NGO and do not qualify for most grant opportunities. They are training new volunteers to help provide more and better parenting training and other services.
Caroline Laidlaw HPRC Jamie Tripp 2019-04-26 04:00:00Z 0

Club Assembly March 20 2019

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Mar 26, 2019
In proper fashion the assembly began with the Finer Points which means Jerry Van Dyk and the Financials. Jerry gently guided us through all the incomes and outcomes of the year thus far. Good work Jerry!! Next
Britt McKerrow had a goal of adding 5 new members but accidentally added 6. Bankers!!! Always bad with numbers. there may even be more in the pipe before the year end. Thirsty Thursday Thursday March 28th, bring out a prospective new member and share the gift of fellowship and the opportunity to contribute in a significant way to our community. Also keep in mind the availibility of spousal and joint memberships that allow us to increase our strength in these busy times. Britt also committed to better communicating the exit or resignation of departing memebers.
Foundation is totally under control and up to date.
Girls Night Out May 2nd, tickets available at Simply Country,... What a great Mothers Day Gift. Services fill up quickly so get your tickeets soon!!!!
COMMUNITY Service,.. Amanda Woodman reviewed the year and funding opportunities we have yet to vote on. Many smaller programs have been supported this year and some large ones yet to come. Overall one of the most rewarding being the Guesthouse Dinners!!
YOUTH,... Phil spoke of the upcoming RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award) program at Geneva Park. Stephanie Frans and Cloe Stewart will be representing and will report back to the club. On the YEX front Nico is still here, so do something with him and get a little taste of totally NEUTRAL HAHAHA
Vocational Service Director and POTD (Party On The Dock) co-chair Craig Stewart said there will be a brown bag lunch May 1st at the New GBDSS (highschool). Also POTD Saturday June 8th (along side the Buttertart Festival) will be promoted and tickets handled through SNAP. Tickets will also be handled by Tripp's Paint Shoppe.
Cheryl Bilyk has taken over public image for Anna Hartman. Does she do everything??
Past President Mr. BiG - Bill Richardson's only job left as PPMB is to organize President's Night June 20th at Captain Robert's Table.
Prez Elect John Decarli and Prez Nominee will be attending the Rotary Weekend in North Bay for training April 12th and 13th (missing the Food Drive) John's hope is to establish a tradition of Midland Rotary Humanitarian Trips to assist around the world on at least a semi-annual basis! here here!!!  On Bingo, although there have been many outside factors effecting the sales, we seem to be normalizing again.
Shannon Flood who will be heading up this years RAK (Randon Acts of Kindness) Day will be looking to involved the schools and other community partners for the event scheduled for Noon on May 22nd.
Ken Pickering who is in charge of the food drive announced that the April 11th, 12th and 13th dates are set and the schedule will be delivered soon for all 4 locations. The sorting and re-distribution will take place at the North side of the PSS building. Ken will look into advertizing (ahem...MORA!)
My Fingers are tired,...
Club Assembly March 20 2019 Jamie Tripp 2019-03-26 04:00:00Z 0

What's Our Story

Posted by James N Tripp on Mar 19, 2019
Anna Hartman, our Director of Public Relations lead us in a well executed program to help the PR committee begin to formulate our Vision/ValueProposition/Elevator Pitch. What do we tell people to help them understand, embrace and possibly support Rotary in new ways. How do we communicate "What Rotary Is", "What Rotary Does" and "What are Rotarians". 
The exercise involved answering these type of questions in simple one or two word answers that would help PR break it down and formulate some simple statements that would encapsulate, carry great weight and clarify for people we meet, who we are.
Results to follow...
What's Our Story James N Tripp 2019-03-19 04:00:00Z 0

The Guesthouse Tour

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Jan 22, 2019
We were treated to a tour of The Guesthouse Facility including the kitchen where we will provide a monthly meal and the residence itself. Code of conduct and volunteer profiles were completed and submitted so that we will be ready to go on January 28th.
Please be sure to Attend the Celebration of Life for our dear friend and Rotarian Alex Jarlette. Alex was a stalwart leader and mentor to many. His community commitment and enduring friendships are the reflection of a life well lived. The celebration will be held at the MCC, January 27th from 1-4pm. 
The Guesthouse Tour Jamie Tripp 2019-01-22 05:00:00Z 0

MPL Kim McLauglin on Ancestry

Posted by James N Tripp on Jan 16, 2019
We are pleased to welcome Kim from the Midland Public Library who has taken up the reins of Ancestry and & Genealogy from Bonnie Reynolds our long time Library Historian and Keeper of the Kids. The area of genealogy has grown continually in popularity as people put more value in oral and written histories and as more and more databases around the world come on-line. The Library has an extensive set of resources to help you do research in many areas of family and local history. These resources include family heritage databases, find a grave databases, as well as providing research recording forms to ensure you capture all of the information and can keep it organised. The library also has an extensive and Free to the Public Library Version of the databases. These are larger than than the membership ones that can be purchased and includes extensive WWI records of metals and movement of troops. Please check out the Library's clubs, services and programs to enjoy all it has to offer, including its MakersSpace and Achive Rooms. Amanda Woodman graciously thanked Kim.
MPL Kim McLauglin on Ancestry James N Tripp 2019-01-16 05:00:00Z 0

AGM and Survey Results

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Dec 17, 2018
President Mora gave a statistical and visual review of the Club Survey results. All in all it would appear that 95% of the club is very-somewhat satisfied. There were varying results with respect to meeting frequency, local projects, international efforts etc. Lots for the board to continue to address and improve. 
President Elect John Decarli presented his list of Director nominees which was motioned, seconded and passed. He then called for nominations from the floor and seeing none asked for closure of the nominations, again motioned, seconded and passed. John then asked for a motion to accept the acclamation of the nominees, Motioned, seconded Passed.
Short and Sweet
AGM and Survey Results Jamie Tripp 2018-12-17 05:00:00Z 0

Sylvia and Sue on Dominican Relief

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Dec 05, 2018
Sylvia Vanderveut spoke to us last year about a project taking Georgian College nursing students to the Dominican Republic /  to do health relief work. Sylvia returned with Sue Boderic who is taking over directorship of this 23 year old program. Sue has been on the service trips for 15 years and is very well versed in how to plan and what is required. The teams have partnered with Rayjon Share Care, an ecumenical charitable organization. The trips are 7 days and since 2003 have just been with the Georgian Students for simplicity and logistical reasons. Along with the relief workers and students the group also brings 2 tonnes of supplies. 100 students do their own fundraising to pay the $1625 needed to fund their way. All students also attend prep meetings to be prepared and help plan the trip agenda. Most of the patients requiring treatment are sugar cane workers who live along with their families in 12' x 12' hovels in villages called Batey. Batey Cambalache, one of the poorest has no running water. These Health Care Missions bring meds and care. The professionals along with the students run daily clinics and treat about 200 people per day. Congratulations to both Sylvia and Sue on the programs success and the personal development it means to those students. 
Sylvia and Sue on Dominican Relief Jamie Tripp 2018-12-05 05:00:00Z 0

Dave Mink "mini" Classification

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Nov 19, 2018
It's important on occasion to have an update from long serving members. This helps to keep us all up to date on what you've been up too and also introduce you to new members as well as remind past members of some of the clubs activities through the years.
Dave Mink presented his re-classification and a tremendous review of his time in Rotary. From dragon boat races to The Cottage Draw, as well as the trail, the dock shelter, and Little Lake Rotary Bandstand. Dave has a very supportive and loving family that have allowed him to do so much. Dave's son AJ is in the family business (auto) and Michelle continues to work with the Terry Fox Foundation as well as the Georgian Bay Gals plus all of her training and fitness business. Dave's dad Ernie who started Mink Insurance turns 90 next month. Dave has enjoyed building the business and last year engaged a succession plan that would take care of his business and staff moving forward. McDougal Brokage Group has take over and will continue to employ ans support staff as well as the local customers. Dave continues to work at the office, doing what he loves but still makes time to support Rotary and get in a few days south. Currently Dave is the Club Secretary and is working his way to President.
Fred thanked Dave and commented that even through a busy life he and others continued with Rotary and have shown us all that it can be done, and done well! Congrats Dave and Carry On.
Dave Mink "mini" Classification Jamie Tripp 2018-11-19 05:00:00Z 0

Local OPP Discuss Cannabis

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Nov 07, 2018
Our Communications officer for the Local OPP brought us all the local police activity info we could handle. I wont reveal in this public document all the tips we were given except to say, there is a lot of technology at work out there to help keep our roads safer. Secondarily, don't drink water in your car at an intersection and don't be a distracted driver. 
On to more fun stuff, Cannabis and how it relates to the OPP. You must be 19+, carry 30g or less, have it securely away when transporting (driving) and don't smoke within 30 metres of schools and churches. Only 4 Plants per residence Tombstoner. Other than that,... have at it. Oh ya, Just like K-Tel records, it's not available in stores just on-line. 
Local OPP Discuss Cannabis Jamie Tripp 2018-11-07 05:00:00Z 0

Shannon Flood  The Whole Story

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Oct 17, 2018
It is always a great meeting when a new Rotarian does their Classification Speech. For those who don't know what that is, it's a peak behind the curtain to the past and present of our new Rotarian. Sometimes personal in nature and sometimes professional it is always engaging and often reveals a little more than we might otherwise get to know over lunch.
Today was Shannon Flood's opportunity to regale us with her youth growing up in Owen Sound, to her misspent days doing 3 rotations as a Katimavic Volunteer (who does that?). She began her professional career as a behavior therapist locally in Owen Sound Shannon then met and married Norm the Nerd, a software engineer that dragged her to our area so that he could work at Waypoint. Shannon and Norm have two daughters 3 and 6. Shannon has taken on being the CLH fundraiser and by all indications has settled well into our little community.
Shannon Flood The Whole Story Jamie Tripp 2018-10-17 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary Down Under Cathy Tait

Ralph Befort introduced his old friend from Ski-Patrol and current Aussie Rotarian Cathy Tait from the Rotary Club of Sydney. Ralph and Cathy go way back and we are honored to have her speak to our club with reference to her journey to OZ as well as her Rotary journey and involvement in programs. Cathy Began by explaining how she as a director at Xerox and her retired partner at Deloitte ended up with the opportunity to follow their daughter to Australia and to keep her husband working for Deloitte. The Sydney club is the oldest in Austrailia and was founded with the help of Canadian Rotarians. Cathy joined the club as a way to get involved and to meet people in her new country. Her club has three main committees, Peacebuilders, Youth and Awards(scholarships). These avenues have spearheaded many projects but the one the Cathy came to speak about is the CSWP Clean Slate Without Prejustice program. This is a outside program supported by her Rotary Club, that tackles inner city issues related to violence and poverty in the Redfern area in Sydney. This is a primarily indigenous population that deals with a lot of drugs and violence. The group meets every morning at 6 to fit box and deal deal with social and personal issues. Since it was started with strong support of the Governor General David Hurely and Rotary and other funders, the area of concern has seen a 68% decline in police actionable issues. Incredible. 
President Mora thanked Cathy and presented her with an Inukshuk and a thank-you acknowledging a $100 contribution to Polio Plus in her name.
Rotary Down Under Cathy Tait Jamie Tripp 2018-09-12 04:00:00Z 0

Meeting Notes Sept 5, 2018

The Meeting began on a high as Yvonne Howell introduced our first of two Inductees in the club. Cheryl Bylik who's family accompanied her have an incredible ironwork business that is based in LA. It is incredible the work they have done and the dedication to their craft. Joyce Campbell introduced our second Inductee who is a local girl with a very long resume of successes. Yvette Robitaille most recently has a successful career in Real Estate along with her two sisters. Family Fun all around. PP Britt McKerrow preformed and inspirational induction and welcomed the new members into our club. Personally I think it was the best induction ever. I'd say the inductees were left speechless but both expressed gratitude and excitement to be welcomed into Midland Rotary.
In the second part of the meeting Phil and Jim M, spoke about the YEX program and the recent welcome canoe trip for our incomer Nico (Switzerland). After some fun photos Nico introduced himself to the club amd expressed how much he appreciated the opportunity to be here with us.
Next Phil introduced our rebound(returning) student Devony who spent the last 11 months in Austria. As a budding photographer she put together a brief selection of photos (from the 13,000 she took) to show us about the exchange and some highlights. It was indeed captivating to watch and listen.
Late announcements
Maureen reminded everyone that Women of Excellence Awards are coming up October 29th. 
Meeting Notes Sept 5, 2018 Jamie Tripp 2018-09-11 04:00:00Z 0

Inukshuk Building 2.0

Today we spend the Meeting like a bunch of children with Lego. As the standard was set by Past President Bill, we continue to gift our speakers with handmade Inukshuks built by the hands of our membership. I`m not sure we are getting more efficient at it, but they sure look good. Thanks to President Mora for continuing our creative development.
Inukshuk Building 2.0 Jamie Tripp 2018-08-15 04:00:00Z 0

DG 7010 Susan Davidson 

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Aug 08, 2018
DG Susan Davidson (accompanied by Tony D.) attended our meeting and was introduced by Joyce Campbell as our Guest speaker. Joyce has known both Susan and Tony since her presidential year when she attended the R.I. Conference in South Africa. At that time they shared a un-describable vessel of maybe food and way to much wine.  Susan praised our club for our community involvement. She described our extreme contributions which are visible all over town and relate to so many worthy causes and organizations. (Cancer Care, Kids, and the disadvantaged to name a few). She also mentioned our community contribution through Music in The Park free entertainment for our residents. Our Random Acts of Kindness day inspired her to start a similar program in her own community. Being out front and giving to the community sets a great example and is invaluable PR. She recognised our tremendous history of international efforts as well as our long standing support of the Rotary Exchange Program. We are also to be commended for jointly founding a very successful Rotaract Club. Planting seeds for the future can only help maintain the Rotary Club for years to come. Susan went on to talk about the focus for the year from RI president Barry Rassin "be the inspiration" and talked about finding your passion and showing it off. Let people know what Rotary means and what it can and will achieve. We need to look within to ensure our club is evolving as an inclusive and accepting model service club. Adapting to accommodate all kinds of members will make us stronger. And Don't Forget to BRAG BRAG BRAG.
Lastly Susan reminded us of the upcoming District and RI conventions and how much fun they can be. 
Mora thanked Susan for her talk which obviously showed she knows way too much about Midland (jealous) and then Mora stiffed her for an Inukshuk.
Final Note.
    " Some men see things as they are and ask why, others see how things could be and ask why not" thanks RK
DG 7010 Susan Davidson Jamie Tripp 2018-08-08 04:00:00Z 0

Rotary International Convention 2018

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Aug 01, 2018
Jason Wilson, attended the RI Convention in Toronto along with several thousand other Rotarians. Rather than transcribe my interpretation of what was a very professional presentation, I'm attaching his link and you can enjoy the read. One thing I did want to hear more about and will ask Jason later was about the Magician.
Rotary International Convention 2018 Jamie Tripp 2018-08-01 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Visit Operation Grow

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Jul 18, 2018
Our Vocational Brown bag lunch visit was to Operation Grow, a social enterprise that is really a therapeutic and empowering business venture launched by Huronia Transitional Home. The concept as described by Kathy Willis is to use the enterprise to help reduce the impacts of violence and poverty on women. By successfully launching the First Phase the hope is to become self-sufficient and then be able to pay part-time Vertical Cultivators and Maintenance staff. Kathy states that working with 3rd generations of abuse and poverty inspired them pursue this venture and that it will be entirely participant driven in its scope. The current offerings are kale, 3 different lettuce varieties, basil, cilantro, dressings etc. Current HVAC issues have led to crop loss, damage and infestations,  but they are confident they will be able to stabilize and then partner with local restaurants and markets to provide goods on a year round basis.
The location is also able to support rentable meeting space, an inspectable kitchen and Trauma Yoga and other supportive programs. Kathy admits that the under estimating on the human resources strain this venture would cause was their biggest mistake. but onward and upward, phase 2 will be a 10,000 square foot farm once they work the Smart System kinks of this one. "hey Siri how's the lettuce?". Open hours are Tuesday 12-5, Friday 10-5 and the Chigamic Market that runs 306 Wednesdays. Thanks to Kathy and her staff for the tour and yes we made off with lots of salad fixings and dressings and pesto at the shop!!!
Vocational Visit Operation Grow Jamie Tripp 2018-07-18 04:00:00Z 0

Customer Interaction Trends

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Jul 11, 2018
Amanda Woodman introduced the incredibly talented Nicole French of Collaborative Haus Marketing. Nicole who is one of the founders of the young marketing team, gave us a thumbnail sketch of what customer interactions looked like pre Internet and Social Media, as well as where the traditional media marketing opportunities were, and then,...She scared the daylights out of half (Older) of the members. By describing how our internet activities, Siri interactions, gmail, and social media likes all add up to custom market profiling and direct communication to your social media feeds.
Customer Interaction Trends Jamie Tripp 2018-07-11 04:00:00Z 0

Tanzania St. T's Trip and Vocational Service Award

Posted by Jamie Tripp on Jun 15, 2018
The Rotary Club of Midland Welcomed 21 of the 24 St. Theresa's High School students who travelled to Tanzania to do a relief trip and cultural exchange. 7 of the students presented different aspects of the trip including, building a foundation for a new school classroom, doing a 2 km water walk with "the Mommas", reinforcing the need for clean source water and filtration systems. Additionally the students attended 2 masses and were also able to visit an operational school(St. Theresa's Academy) to see the type of classes that will run in the classroom they started. It was an excellent opportunity to bond with the Tanzanian students and to play as they all participated in a Fun Olympics together. Finally the group were treated to a safari to see some of the natural beauty and animals of the area. The students thanked both the Midland and Penetanguishene Rotary Clubs for their support and presented us with a wonderful song and dance.
 Jim MacMillan Thanked Mrs. Shauna Sguina and the Student's and presented her with a Inukshuk as a thank you from the club.
Maureen Reid invited Past President Jamie Tripp to the podium to introduce our 2017-18 Vocational Service Award Winner. Jamie was pleased to introduce Former Midland Police Chief Mike Osborne
Mike recently retired after a 30-year career in policing that included, 27 years in Midland and 18 years in senior management positions.  He is a graduate of Georgian College, a graduate of the University of Toronto’s, Rotman Leadership Program, holds a degree from Guelph University, and has received significant training through the Canadian and Ontario Police Colleges, as well as other universities.  Mike was active in the police community and served as Vice-President of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police. 
Mike and Jennifer have resided in the North Simcoe area for 27 years and they have a son and daughter that reside in the area.  His passions include boating with family, sports, the outdoors, and volunteering.  In particular, he has volunteered for organizations that support youth development and education, and those who are struggling due to poverty, homelessness, and poor physical or mental health, including addictions. 
He has served on many Boards and Committees in Simcoe County resulting in his nomination by Georgian College for the Premier’s Award, and receipt of the Queens Diamond Jubilee Award.  He is also a recipient of the Police Exemplary Service Medal and is currently on the Board of Directors for the North Simcoe Boys and Girls Club.
Mike is also a past Member of the Midland Rotary Club.
President Bill Richardson congratulated and presented Mike with his Award. 
Finally President Elect Mora Austin announced the results of our club vote on a modified Meeting Schedule as proposed by the Board of Directors and it passed with a vote of 23-6. Thus the new schedule will take effect begining with the first meeting in July.
Tanzania St. T's Trip and Vocational Service Award Jamie Tripp 2018-06-15 04:00:00Z 0

Marlon Gibbons

Posted by Jamie Tripp on May 17, 2018
Britt had the distinct pleasure of introducing local entertainer and composer Marlon Gibbons. Marlon has been extremely busy and successful as an independent composer from his tiny home studio. Marlon joined us, not just to tell us what he is doing now, but how did he get there and how did he get to work with big production houses,... 
Marlon's family background was from the east coast of Canada and he came by his love of instruments naturally but not formally(not by written instead by ear). When he finished high-school, he traveled to Hamilton to study music production and technologies. After graduating, and coming home 2000-2003, the Internet had revolutionized how music could be distributed and shared with an ever growing on-line audience. Suddenly you could have connections and relationships all over the world and good things began to happen. In 2005 PS2, one of the worlds leading gaming consoles, used Marlon's music for a video game. This was just the beginning and things began to take off. With a young family and a full-time job it was not a healthy nor happy situation. As a family they decided to drop the Deluxe/Nebs graphic design job and do composing and production full-time!! After a year Marlon discovered that it takes a lot to work on your own and that the weeks are not limited by hours, but rather by deadlines. The flexibility and being able to do what you love has been incredible for both his family and his creativity. Marlon treated us to some samples of his work Drunken Christmas October Pumpkin or something. It sounded sloppy and German, not a common thread. It was a pleasure to find out more about Marlon's work and creativity.
Marlon Gibbons Jamie Tripp 2018-05-17 04:00:00Z 0

Terry Fox Run Update

Posted by Jamie Tripp on May 09, 2018
Today's Program was a Terry Fox Run Primer and tune-up as well as feedback meeting, Don Chapman, from our local TFR organizing committee started the program with a thank you for all the Midland Rotary has done to support the run over the years. Secondly he ran us through a quick pop quiz focused on the numbers surrounding the run. Next he reviewed the results over the past three years and stressed that our run, hits way over it's weight in terms of per capita dollars raised. He revealed some of the coming years plan and goals before turning the meeting over to Pat Boyd for the fun part of the meeting. In the "Bag of Junk" exercise we attemped in groups to quickly go from object to attributes to brain storming Ideas. Some got it, some didn't. Thanks to Andre Sanche from our group for rescuing and answer from our mis-conceived analysis. Oh boy. 
Terry Fox Run Update Jamie Tripp 2018-05-09 04:00:00Z 0

Sustainable Travel

Posted by David Mink on Apr 25, 2018
Our Guest Speaker today was Alison Braun, an Orillia Rotarian who operates a company called Earth Treks and specializes in sustainable travel mostly taking small groups to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands in a way that is good for the culture of the area and natural environment. They try to do a carbon offset for each person who travels with them. Alison shared many photos from the areas they travel in.
For more information go to her website at
Sustainable Travel David Mink 2018-04-25 04:00:00Z 0

District Governor Mike Kinsey

Posted by David Mink on Oct 11, 2017
Joyce Campbell introduced our District Governor Mike Kinsey... Mike is very passionate about Rotary and his enthusiasm shines through. He moved to Barrie (temporarily he thought) about 30 years ago. However that soon changed and he started a company called MAK Mechanical in Barrie. He joined Rotary and then his real rotary moment was a trip to Cambodia to deliver bicycles, this turned out to be a start of another project in which a new school was built with assistance from Barrie Kempenfelt club, other district clubs. They have been supporting the school and recently set up a sewing school to give villagers a chance to earn a living. At District Level, Mike took on the 7010 New Generations which oversees Interact, Rotaract, Short term exchanges, New Generation Services & Ryla. Mike is most proud that there are 7 Rotaract Clubs in the district, that we continue to raise funds and awareness to end polio (next week we have marching orders and will be wearing ponchos). He also advised to use the Rotary Club Central, which has some good information. Mike also challenged us to get all our old Rotary Records and get them up on the Cloud, so it can be seen by others and new members... As his last deed Mike presented Pres Bill with his Rotary Black Sheep Pin.
District Governor Mike Kinsey David Mink 2017-10-11 04:00:00Z 0

Dr. Katie Rothwell - Reduce Stress & Increase Energy Levels!

Posted by Aaron Ledlie on Sep 27, 2017
Anna Hartman introduced our Club's guest speaker Dr. Katie Rothwell. Anna and Katie both attended Regent Public School and asked that it not be held against either of them. Anna recalled fond memories of Katie's 'ice cream' made for blended frozen fruit as well as their 'house chickens' and mentioned that Katie's path to naturopathtic medicine was well rooted in childhood.
Katie discussed that goal of her talk was to share strategies to reduce stress and increase energy levels. The focus was 'hacks' to help minimize time and effort and maximize the benefits. The 3 hacks to be discussed were: food as fuel, maximizing sleep, and creating calm.
Food as Fuel
Katie noted that many people suffer from the '3PM slump'. In 90% of cases this is as result of blood sugar levels relative to diet. One 'hack' is to ditch the standard breakfast and shift towards a high proteins, healthy fats, and high fibre for breakfast. Options include vegetables,  beans, fruits and nuts.
Maximizing Sleep
Many high stress low energy individuals suffer from non-restorative and restless sleep. The key is to maximize high quality sleep. Strategies include: Reduce your exposure to electronics and use 'blue light' filters prior to sleep as 'blue light' which is emitted by electronics stimulates the production of cortisol the 'stress hormone'. Work with your natural circadian rhythms and sleep more hours prior to midnight. And lastly, enjoy a small and healthy pre-bed-time snack to help balance your blood sugar during sleep.
Creating Calm
Most individuals suffering from high stress and low energy need to find ways to create their own calm during their day. One strategy is to book-end days with 5-10 minutes of 'meditation'. Meditation could be, but does not need to be, in the traditional sense; other options include walking, yoga, diaphragmatic breathing, or hobbies. The key is to make sure that the activity is mindful. Meditation has been proven to change your brain in a positive manner.
Katie noted several other challenges that can lead to high stress and low energy levels such as nutrient deficiencies (iron, vitamin B, vitamin D), low thyroid, chronic disease, and the the side effects of medication among others. If you feel like you are suffering from high stress or low energy talk to a professional!      
Dr. Katie Rothwell - Reduce Stress & Increase Energy Levels! Aaron Ledlie 2017-09-27 04:00:00Z 0

Terry Fox Foundation

Posted by David Mink on Sep 05, 2017
Don Chapman introduced Fred Fox, brother of a national hero Terry Fox. Fred led us on a journey as he lived it during the late 1970’s when Terry was first diagnosed with cancer and had to have his leg surgically removed, his recovery and the journey he started.
Terry was an average kid who dreamed big and set off on a journey in 1980 to run across Canada to raise some money for cancer research. He started in St. John’s NFLD in April and made it through the Maritimes, Quebec and most of Ontario, before his journey came to end on Sept.1 as his cancer had returned. Fred read us entries from Terry’s journal form the previous days of August 29th and 30th. Terry’s dream of raising $1M had changed along his route and that became $24M which at the time was $1 for every person in Canada. Today the Terry Fox Foundation has raised in excess of $750M and continues to grow, even though there are many other cancer fundraisers. Fred now is a director with the Foundation as are his brother Darrell and sister Judy. His parents Rolly and Betty Fox have passed away in the last few years and now it is up to Terry’s siblings to keep the dream of finding a cure for cancer going. Fred also mentioned his daughter has become involved.
Fred praised our local committee and volunteers as they have been in the forefront of fundraising across the nation as they have raised $2M.
Fred ended with a thought... 1 inspires many as a spark ignites a flame.
Terry Fox Foundation David Mink 2017-09-05 04:00:00Z 0

Community Reach

Posted by Mark Kowalsky on Aug 23, 2017
Community Reach TLC programs transportation program represented by Rick Ignace and Rolande Maracle, one of the users of the van purchased with our financial support. The van was parked outside and those who remained had a group photo taken with it. The program provides transportation for those who have limited income, providing 37000 rides since it’s inception, and 2200 so far this year. Since June 1, this van alone has had more than 100 rides.
Some of the volunteer drivers put in up to 85 hours in two weeks, sometimes getting up at 4:00 AM to make appointments in Toronto. Rolande described how this service has been a lifeline for her medical appointments as there is no bus service to Victoria Harbour where she resides. She can get in and out of this wheelchair-accessible van without throwing her hip out.
Community Reach Mark Kowalsky 2017-08-23 04:00:00Z 0

Taking Effective Photos

Posted by David Mink on Aug 15, 2017
Jason Wilson introduced Kevin Cascagnette to us. Kevin is no stranger to Rotary as he is currently VP of the North Simcoe Rotaract Club. Kevin is a professional photographer and has been engaging in this for over 6 years. Working with Kelly Moss for a few years and has ventured out on his own and set up Kevin Cascagnette Photography, where he specializes in weddings, portraits and commercial photography.
Kevin shared his passion in attempts to make us better picture takers.
You just have to live and Life will give you Pictures!
He shared with us the rule of thirds as all images are broken into 3 grids – Center weighted...Negative Space... and Alternative Angles. Kevin was very engaging and there were many questions that he fielded from the audience.
Kevin also left us with: There are no Rules for good photographs.... there are only good photographs.
Taking Effective Photos David Mink 2017-08-15 04:00:00Z 0

Dan Donaldson Classification

Posted by Mark Kowalsky on Aug 08, 2017
Joyce introduced our guest speaker Dan Donaldson giving his classification talk.
Dan was (characteristically) entertaining. In short, he joined Rotary in 1987 in Lindsay and transferred to Midland last year. His classification is “Entertainment”,and started off with a “Donaldson hidden quiz”. Everyone’s elephant was from Denmark. My eel was from Denmark. Coincidence? I doubt it.
His father was in Great Lakes Shipping, in Midland every 8 or 9 days, during which time he enjoyed his shore leave and met Dan’s mother.
Dan was (I’m sure only narrowly) beat out by Gordon Lightfoot in the Ralph Snelgrove Talent Search on tv, and took him to task on it years later. He studied at Western, getting a Batchelor of Music circa 1974. His career was in the entertainment industry, doing arts administration, cultural management, and was the manager of the Oakville arts centre, and ran theatres and galleries. He did some freelance broadcasting, and ….I couldn’t keep up with the list of all he did in Kitchener, Waterloo, Chatham, and Lindsay. He retired, and came home to Midland. He still plays trombone with Georgian Bay brass, and is still involved with a 17 piece Jazz group in Burlington.
Dan closed with an anecdote about booking Victor Borge and Victor’s recollections of three command performances for the Queen.
Dan Donaldson Classification Mark Kowalsky 2017-08-08 04:00:00Z 0

Cycle Simcoe

Posted by Aaron Ledlie on Jul 31, 2017
Anna was pleased to introduce Brendan Matheson, the Experience Development Coordinator for Tourism Simcoe County as our guest speaker. Brendan’s job involves developing outdoor tourist experiences in our area; one of his most recent areas of focus is on cycling and the website Brendan discussed the beginnings of the cycling focus in our area, the reason our region is a very popular cycling destination, and the amazing tourism opportunity that is provided when cycling is focused on as a tourist experience. The focuses for this effort are on getting organized with local partners such as the health Unit, OPP, Ontario by bike, the local municipalities and townships, and local business. They then started up a pilot project that involved a cycling coordinator. Key tasks included mapping, signage, safety, and marketing. There are 3 maps of our area; Ontario Lake Country, Southern Georgian Bay, and Heart of Georgian Bay. The focus for the signage was directional and safety. Safety messages were also produced in video format sharing information such as the recent 1 meter passing law, tips on sharing the road, how motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians can better interact with each other, cycling formation, and specific tips a cyclist to increase their safety while on the road. They had also created several other marketing pieces such as a cycling checklist, a cycling friendly business listing for certified business (this is a free listing for business), and tourist packages which included suggested routes and accommodation options, and 15 bicycle repair stations which can now be found locally.
Brendan said that they have had some great success especially with their safety messages as the social network really helped with their exposure. They had also put out a survey for the now 60 certified business which helped track the business trends in relation to their cycling tourism efforts and the results were clear that there had been a marked increase in cycling tourism in our area. Bill thanked Brendan for his talk and made mention of our donation to Rotary International’s End Polio Now campaign; he was then given an Inuksuk with 2 arms.
Cycle Simcoe Aaron Ledlie 2017-07-31 04:00:00Z 0

Terry Fox Run

Posted by David Mink on Jul 24, 2017
Jamie Tripp introduced Don Chapman, volunteer chair of the Terry Fox Run in Midland and Patrick Scott and Mike McDougall from the Run in Barrie.
Don is very passionate about the run in Midland and about helping the Terry Fox Foundation find a cure for cancer as he lost his son to the disease. September 7th is the run date for our area and there are a number of distances that you can walk, bike, crawl, take your wheel chair and our area run starts in Perkinsfield. Midland last year was ranked 16th in Ontario for fundraising (quite an accomplishment for a small centre) and this area is just shy of $2 million raised over the years. 825 participants last year and they hope it continues to grow again. In Canada overall $28 million was raised last year at 740 run sites, 8500 school sites and 2700 teams...
Our friends from the Barrie run, were sharing some of their knowledge and Patrick Scott who has chaired Barrie for many years is a walking/talking trivia knowledge person, who knows just about everything about Terry, his family and the 35 years+ that the run has taken place. Mike McDougall is stepping up to take the leadership position and is a cancer survivor, the only one in his family to survive the disease.
They challenged us all to participate in any way we can, either by taking part in the run/walk event, being part of a team or simply just make a donation to help find a cause to end the disease! They were all thanked by Britt McKerrow who presented them with an inuksuk and for this week only a donation to the Terry Fox Foundation.
** To note: Terry’s brother Fred Fox will be a guest of Fred Hacker on Tuesday August 29 for the Day in the Life series at MCC and as well he may be a guest at Midland Rotary on August 30th.
Terry Fox Run David Mink 2017-07-24 04:00:00Z 0

November 11

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 15, 2016
Dean said he'd met Chuck Darrow recently and realized he was one of the few remaining who were part of WW II and he had come to speak of his experiences and to give the Club and opportunity to remember those who have served.  Chuck accompanied his talk with film he'd taken on air bases in Britain - grainy but telling images of young men, many of whom did not make it.
Dean said Chuck had been rejected at first but by 1944 he was flying Spitfires with Squadron 416.  He counted 150 hours of combat and stayed in till 1958.  He then turned to business and became a director of the Fighter Pilots Association.  He built his own house on the beach and lives, now, in Penetang.
Chuck described landing by kerosene lamps laid out on the field when coming back late, being bombed by shrapnel explosives, crash landings.  One time he lost a wing on landing, spun and hit a wall.  The coaming had come off and the plane on fire but he climbed out in good shape.  They dropped him putting him in the ambulance and gave him a concussion.
Pilots were issued parachutes which they left on the back of their seats if they knew they were going up again.  After two flights he returned one and discovered that he had been flying with two blankets.  He was charged for the loss but managed to write it off after being strafed.
He enjoyed the Spit - a beautiful aircraft - but it had a short range so they added a belly tank which was supposed to be released after it was empty.  A mate ran out of fuel on the wrong side of the Rhine and was gliding east and happy to see the water beneath him so came down, unfortunately, on the one spot on the west side of the river still held by the Germans.
He was in a dog fight with a flight of 190's which came out of a hole in the clouds to surprise them.  He dodged as they chased him and his plane was hit - in the tail and through the cockpit and between his arm and back so he was still able to land.
Chuck finished by donating Raptors tickets to the Club.
Dean spoke about heroes and losses and told the story of a young Robbie Shawbolt who witnessed the sinking of Corbeau's yacht and, with others from his factory, saved several and redirected others to safety with his strong swimming.  By the time the inquest was being held Robbie was already overseas and subsequently KIA.
November 11 Bill Molesworth 2016-11-15 05:00:00Z 0

DG Margaret Walton

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 12, 2016
Joyce said Margaret is a member of the Bracebridge Club, joining in 2003, but that she has a lifetime of experience with Rotary as her husband, Ron, has been a member for 30 years.  She was Club Pres in 2010 - 11, has served on several committees and been on two trips to Cambodia to distribute bicycles.  She's a Land Use Planner in a company with two partners.  During her years as Ass't DG - 2010 to 2015 she established the current Strategic Plan for the District.
Margaret said she was happy to visit such a fun and active Club.  Her ties to Rotary go back even farther than Ron's, her grandfather was a charter member of the Orillia Club and she remembers selling peanuts as a fundraiser.  Ron joined while they lived in Yellowknife, before women could join, and when they moved to Bracebridge he joined there.  When the kids moved out, she was invited and they became one of the 7 couples in the Club.  Her experience is that she would have joined sooner but she was 'never asked'.  She feels this is a lesson - when talking to people, be sure to ask them.
Their three kids are married and there's one grandson.
The International theme this year is Rotary Serving Humanity, set by International President John Germ.  There are 540 DG's and at the last training session 90 of them were women.  The route to Governership is long, requiring service as a Club President, a DG, a Zone Director, etc.  This is hard for young people to manage with careers and families, especially women, but the numbers of women in the positions is growing.
The areas of focus this year are - membership, foundation giving, online presence, humanitarian service, new generations and public image.  She explained that online presence is increasingly important because the stats gathered there support applications for funding, especially from the feds, who are contributing currently.  Public image is also vital - she feels Rotary has kept its light under a bushel for too long and needs to get the community aware.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Foundation - started with the profits from the Atlanta conference of 1916 - $26.50.  Total endowment now exceeds one billion.  The Foundation is highly effective and well managed - very low admin costs, the money is spent on projects.
It's important to understand the Foundation donations return to the community.  $300,00.00 given in 2013 means that $150,000.00 comes back to the District to be spent as we see fit.  And matching grants can leverage a commitment by 4 or 5 times.
This year Polio was limited to two countries but a section of Nigeria where Boko Haram holds sway now reports cases, though efforts are being made.  It's clear that only Rotary could manage the job - it's in more countries than the UN and WHO and UNESCO didn't recognize that eradication was possible - coming to the task well after Rotary had started it.  The model is now being repeated with malaria, etc.
Her mantra at the District is the "power of combined efforts" and she encourages us to come together, to join at the District level.  The District has been asked by some of the smaller clubs to launch District projects they can join so they are working on and Int'l, a Community Service and an Indigenous project, on which more later.
Her goals are to strengthen the Clubs, focus on the humanitarian, enhance our public image, get connected, promote leadership and celebrate Rotary.  So, there are still some spaces at the District Conference in two weeks and there are a couple of spots on a Friendship exchange to NZ leaving Feb 8.
DG Margaret Walton Bill Molesworth 2016-10-12 04:00:00Z 0

Report from Planning Department

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 05, 2016
Aaron said Wes Crown would bring 'high quality info' on planning status in Midland.
Wes said this has been the busiest year for construction and investment for the last almost 10 years.  By August almost 100 more new permits had been issued than by this time last year at a value of 60 million, twice last year's.  104 new houses.  Commercial construction way up.  A 4.9 million conversion of the Mountainview mall which will change retail in Midland and add a new restaurant in the parking lot.  The new Secondary School, at 22 million, will start soon.  7 million will be spent on the emergency department.  What used to be called Marine Park and is now known as Baypoint Village is finally near completion and will be half full by the end of the year.  There will be a new tower on Aberdeen.  The Hanson development on Little Lake is scheduled to start next year.  Work on the Downtown Master Plan has started and there will be a public input meeting in a couple of months.  This will be the redesign of 'the living room' of Midland.
Wes sees all this activity and is asking if it is a blip or a trend.  The Province forecasts growth and the Federal Government says immigration levels will rise and this will have an effect on the hinterlands of the bigger cities.  The Development Community is showing interest in the area.  TRW has a new 5 year contract which will keep their staff busy and they and others are hiring.  The Town if focusing on Economic Development with an emphasis on Tourism which has been supported this year by the 12 visits of the Cruise Ship and there may be 20 next year.  There are active committees contributing, like the Cultural and Accessibility ones.
Dean asked if accessibility will be part of the master plan as it is difficult to get a wheelchair into many downtown outlets.  Wes said the province mandates it thought the rules are different depending on what's being done to the building but by 2025 all buildings are supposed to be.  The design consultants are looking at the elevations and the possibility of changing the grades at doors.
Fred Hacker wondered about the Town's commitment to building versus it's drive to cut taxes.  Should the larger community be more involved?  Other questions resulted in information that the County is looking at Highway 93 and trying to make it more accessible and less of a highway and that the downtown review will include templates for Midland, First Street and the laneways.  There are expected to be more medical offices across from the liquor store but one tenant has pulled out so it's on hold.  Roundabouts are being reviewed but are resisted in established areas - easier to build in new construction.  And the planning on the Chigamick building is done and they are waiting on Ministry of Health funding.
Report from Planning Department Bill Molesworth 2016-10-05 04:00:00Z 0

Returned YX students.

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 28, 2016
Fiona Murton spent the last year in Denmark, arriving in a town of 400 called Hjern.  She had to take a train and a bust to school and most people didn't speak English.  She liked the area because it had a strong sense of community but at first she was nervous about the language barrier and not knowing anyone.  But visits to the local farmers' market and starting school introduced her to many great people and she made friends quickly.
She enjoyed several trips to Copenhagen - with her host mother she saw the sights and shopped; with a relative, an architect, she was introduced to the many aspects of the buildings in the city - and to London (they gave her a ticket for her birthday and she stayed with the family's daughter.
The family hosted a Thanksgiving, which is not a Dutch festival, so she enjoyed the thoughtfulness.
She did think about what her friends back home were doing, signing up for university and moving on without her but she felt the experience and strong friendships were at least equally valuable.
Christmas is important to Danes and they celebrate with many traditions - songs, dancing around the tree, flags everywhere, risking fire with candles on the trees, etc.
She went to Germany for New Year's and saw cathedrals and fireworks everywhere and then there was a class trip to London and finally a quick tour through several countries to experience different cultures and food.
She thanked all of Rotary and especially those who worked on the YX program.
Sarah Douglas went to Northern Italy and found she was homesick for maybe two days.  She enjoyed it all so much but found there was too much to see - the people, the language, and the nature of the area were all beautiful.  She admired the way of life.
Things are small - cars, roads and groceries and each area is different with different cultures and dialects.  Her town was small and on a lake but her family liked to hit the road so they traveled around the area a lot.  The mother was a teacher who helped with her language and the father told her he didn't speak it to encourage her because he did.
With her second family she gained a brother her own age and met lots of friends taking part in activities, the choir and volunteering at a free trade store.  By the time she joined the third family they all knew each other already.
She felt they had a strong impulse to see 'the beauty in doing nothing' - they enjoyed their meals and their hours off.  She feels she is more outgoing now, that she's gained some problem solving skills, that she's less stressed about things.
She also enjoyed a 10 city tour and the introduction to so much.  She is grateful for the program and the opportunity.
Returned YX students. Bill Molesworth 2016-09-28 04:00:00Z 0

Assistant District Governor Doug Moody

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 17, 2016
Aaron introduced ADG Doug Moody who is embarking on a 3 year term as ADG for Area 6 of District 2010.
Doug said he was happy to be able to call on Joyce for advice and said the Club is fortunate to have her.  He has heard a lot about Midland since he's been involved at the District level and especially about the Club's fund raising successes.
Area 6, which is one of 8, includes Midland and Penetang, Innisville and the three Barrie Clubs.
Doug said he's moved a lot, first with his family from Galt to Pittsburgh and Burlington and then to Thunder Bay where he went to High School.  He took his Business degree at Western and became and auditor but left that to join Tire and Auto, a franchising company, of which he became GM.  It now has 33 locations.  In 1989 he joined Etobicoke Rotary but in 1993 he left the GM position to become a franchisee and moved to Barrie to manage them.  HIs wife Joan is a financial analyst, his son Jeff a CA and now GM of the franchise company and daughter Alison manages operations at the family business.
Moving to the Barrie Huronia Club was a pleasant experience because he found the smaller community meant more fellowship.
He's been District Conference co-chair, President for 05-06, and a Group Study leader to Central America, visiting 20 Clubs.  He found Rotaract very active there and when he came back started one in Barrie that has 25 members and there are now seven Clubs chartered in Muskoka.
This year's theme is Rotary Serving Humanity - Better Peoples' Lives and efforts are being made to make the organization more flexible and able to better attract young people.  Not forgetting that there were still 74 cases of Polio last year International is asking every Club for $2,650.00 to finish it.  (The number comes from the first donation to the Foundation - $26.50)  Changes are being made, at the Council on Legislation, to the business of Rotary to save money, to Presidential Citation requirements, to membership and attendance requirements and to Rotaract guidelines.
Doug says Marg Walton will be coming to speak soon and we will find her a dynamic leader and communicator dedicated to doing things together and lending District support to Club efforts.  He says he and Marg are here to help so keep in touch.
Assistant District Governor Doug Moody Bill Molesworth 2016-09-17 04:00:00Z 0

Vernice Smith Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 10, 2016
Vernice was born in Virginia in April of 1965, the youngest of 8.  She has an Aunt in Ohio who has 9 children and another in the Chesapeake with 6.  They don't need to invite any extras to make up a crowd in her family.  Norfolk Virginia is home to the Naval Station, the Beach and the Chesapeake Bay Tunnel/Bridge.
She didn't meet her father till she was 13 and though getting to know each other was difficult - she still just calls him 'the old man' - she finds that with her mother's passing a few years ago it is nice to have someone to talk to.  Her mother instilled a sense of caring, empathy and religious feeling in her children and Vernice was helping at her local nursing home while still in high school.  They even took patients home for holidays and festivals.  Can't do that any more.  They had an uncle living with them who needed attention as well.
In High School she did a lot of athletics - running and the high and long jumps but basketball was too much chasing the ball up and down the court so she dropped that.  In Junior Achievement she developed a lamp with an electric metre for the base.  You can still find the odd one on ebay.
She married, did some modelling, took IT at college but didn't enjoy it and so went back for Business Admin. and then went to work for Sumitomo Drive Technologies which modified conveyor belts with speed controls for manufacturing applications.  She started co-ordinating  United Way drives in that company and in others to make them more effective.
She has two daughters and in 2005 she divorced and moved to Oakville, starting as a United Way volunteer and sidelining as a Karaoke champion.  Oakville's expensive and, having been to Midland as a visitor, she applied for a job at the Wal Mart and worked there for a while, meeting and marrying Ron Smith in 2011.  She was head hunted by the Heart and Stroke organization and co-ordinated their campaigns throughout Simcoe/Muskoka for 3 years.  She found she enjoyed it and took fundraising at Georgian.  Finding the large area involved too much driving, she moved to CLH this May to become the Foundation Co-ordinator.
She knows there's a long history between the CLH and Rotary and is thankful for the support.  They are promoting a Christmas on the Green next week at Brooklea, they work with Nancy Spiker on her Fashion Show and other events are coming.
Vernice showed a video of the people who work and the ones who live at CLH.
Vernice Smith Classification Bill Molesworth 2016-08-10 04:00:00Z 0

Aaron reads to us

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 03, 2016
Aaron feels the Rotarian magazine has high quality content and he decided to read a bit of it to us.  To be fair (why start now?) we didn't have a speaker and he had to come up with something on short notice.
10 Reasons to be a Rotarian
Polio - almost gone.  16 cases this year.  People who take action can make a sustainable change for billions of people.
Foundation - this is its centenary year and it has spent 3 billion on making the world a better place.
Social Networking - being part of something and connecting with others is good for you.
Comes Back - District grants give our money back multiplied so the benefit to the community is even greater.
Membership is even more flexible - soon we won't have to show up but then - see #3?
Peace Initiatives and Education - one person at a time or supporting NGOs Rotary changes minds.
Scholarships - the best and the brightest.  Midland gives a scholarship to a member of each graduating class.
Rotarians are happier and healthier.
Working for the future - Youth engagement, RYLA, Youth Exchange, Adventures in..., Student of the Month.
Aaron reads to us Bill Molesworth 2016-08-03 04:00:00Z 0

Honduras Mission

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 27, 2016
Gary introduced Marie who hails from Northern Alberta but has been living in Peterborough where she taught French and English as a second language while taking a Masters in Global Change.  She's been a member of Rotary for over a year and has already been named Rotarian of the Year there.  She is keen on pursuing sustainable solutions to the problems endemic in Honduras and has been there several times both on missions and as part of Rotary initiatives like wheelchair distributions and donations of school supplies.  There is a relationship with a club there which is dedicated to helping.
Marie said Honduras is the second poorest country in the world, after Haiti, the government is corrupt and they are still suffering from the effects of a huge tornado that hit in 1998.  There are a lot of gangs and associated violence though she says that if you take the standard precautions there is little risk.  Working with the local club helps.
The wheelchair distribution she worked on handed out 275 chairs of all sizes.  She has also helped distribute water filters and worked with the AFE school which stands for love, hope and faith and is built at the local dump where families scrounge for recylclables under the control of gangs who limit their earnings.  One person made $5.00 scavenging cardboard to feed a family of 8 for a week.  She also has connections to the Reyes Irene Vocational School for girls from 12 up who work as domestics or street vendors.  The school provides accelerated courses to give a GED as well as moral support, medical care, sex education and lessons on their rights as citizens. and has won a UN award nomination but it is closed, now, due to lack of funding.  $13,000.00 has been raised to open half of the classrooms and it is hoped to raise more through the global grant application.
School in Honduras is free but students are required to wear a uniform and shoes and provide books and transport which is often beyond the reach of families.  Again funding is being sought to offer scholarships which the students would repay through tutoring and kits of supplies for students and for assisting teachers.
There is an application in to fund a trip next year - $82,000.00 - with more being raised elsewhere and the hope is to develop a
female empowerment course along with business projects, vocational training and teachers' training, the graduates of which would teach others.  They are also developing textbooks that are specific to the locale and would be rented so they are returned and reused and then the funding used to update and replace them.
Gary said Marie is planning a trip to Honduras in Feb. next year and is excited to think our Club might join her to pursue a water filter project that also would include building a filter factory so they could accelerate deliveries and provide jobs.  Gary got about 10 hands expressing interest in participating.  He projects about 50 people going from 5 Clubs and Midland would arrive first to work on the filter projects and then help out on others as other groups arrived.  There is the possibility that some members might stay longer.  If you're interested in going, talk to Gary.  A decision will be made early in August.
Honduras Mission Bill Molesworth 2016-07-27 04:00:00Z 0

The Legion Pipe and Drum Band

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 20, 2016
Ivan said there had been a Royal Orange Lodge band but it was failing in 1968 though there was still a demand for the tunes so a couple of alumni, including John French, contacted the Legion and got some family members involved and the Legion bought the uniforms and instruments and they advertised for members and got a good response.  A lot of work went into instruction and practice and the new band played at the 1970 Remembrance Day ceremonies.  Since then they've represented Midland at the Orange Bowl parade, the Edinburgh Tatoo, and lots of places in between.
The band now has 20 members.  It lost its drum major, Jim Malcolm, two years ago but his place has been taken by Pete Desrochers.  They march at all the local parades in Midland and surrounding communities and at all Legion events.  But the same problem has recurred, dwindling membership.  People think they'd like to join but finding playing is harder than they expected and give up.  It takes a couple of years of memorization of the tunes and learning the placement of the fingers.  As the band always performs at the Annual Inspection of the Air Cadets they asked the members if there was any interest and they recruited 4 who now play at their own Inspections.  The members went to the Netherlands (HdJ) last year and, with another couple of young guys (gr. 8) who managed to get the learning period down to a few months of hard work they went to North Bay and did very well.
Of course, things wear and their uniforms and instruments need replacement.  They do two big fundraisers a year - the Boat Cruise and the Burns Supper and they charge some fees to parade in other communities but it's not enough.
Ivan is pleased with the new, young members and their enthusiasm and greats showings at North Bay and Orillia and hopes they can keep the interest high.  He and three young associates played a couple of tunes for the Club.
The Legion Pipe and Drum Band Bill Molesworth 2016-07-20 04:00:00Z 0

St. T's to Tanzania

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 29, 2016
4 of the 22 young people who went to Tanzania, along with a teacher, gave a slide and commentary show about their trip.  They worked on laying block for an addition to the local school and, due to good weather and hard work, got 9 rows of block laid rather than the anticipated 5.  A new room means the government assigns a new teacher and given that there are over 600 kids at this school, a new teacher is a real plus.
They lived in camps while they were there and used outhouses, took showers from buckets (which taught them a bit about how lucky we are to have access to taps) and saw another way of life.  They attended Mass with the community and with members of two other school missions and they found those services to be lively and 'so fun', with music and involving but long, at three hours.
They had an 'Olympics' sports day at the end with 10 teams taking a turn at each of 10 activities and enjoyed the spirit of play.  A more sobering effort was the 2 km water walk with a 20 liter can of water, a walk that the mothers take several times a day and an experience even more effective than being limited to 5 minutes in the shower.  And, as they noted, an injury or illness means no water at all.
They were able to take several dozen soccer balls to distribute and found one group that had been playing with a taped up jug.  They played local teams but had help from some adults that saved them from embarrassing defeats.
They also got to go on a safari and saw giraffes in the distance and lions and elephants up close.
They felt they had given a lot but had also gained a lot themselves and it was a very emotional parting when they had to leave.
Bill R thanked them for their efforts and their presentation and remarked that they are great ambassadors for their school, for Canada and for Rotary.
St. T's to Tanzania Bill Molesworth 2016-06-29 04:00:00Z 0

Centre for Entrepreneurship

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 01, 2016
Sarah Benson said the idea behind the Centre (going to write this without using the word 'entrepren.... again) is to accelerate the growth of your business and it works out of all 7 campuses.  (Campi?)  Active and growing businesses will contribute to keeping young people in the area and help people break down barriers to their success.  The program works on four pillars - Mentorship, Training, Networking and Funding.
The Centre has a pool of mentors who located in all the communities, not just Barrie, who have or had a business and who are paid.  They have particular expertise and are matched so as to be most effective.
Funding comes through Ontario's Centres of Excellence program and there is support from NSCF, the MaRS for market research and funding for social networking intiatives which is matched by the government up to $2,500.00, and the Angel Network.
She's enthusiastic about the opportunities the Centre presents to business people looking for advice and support - a valuable resource.
Centre for Entrepreneurship Bill Molesworth 2016-06-01 04:00:00Z 0

Ken Pickering's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 04, 2016
Due to circumstances entirely within my control but avoided I failed to report on Ken's Classification so - may apologies and a report.
Ken was a Charter Member of the Barrie Kempinfelt Rotary Club and served as President.  He's a sustaining member of the Foundation and a welcome addition to our Club.
Ken's slides were of a recent trip to the South Pacific and scuba diving off a 110 foot boat 4 times a day.  Then a shot of him as a goalie at 5 who took it on out of either fearlessness or stupidity.  His grandparents were almost all from England, excepting his Dad's Mom who was born in Penetang.  He was the youngest and grew up with his grandmother.  His grandfather owned a fruit store in Mt. Denis through the depression when he tried to give credit.  In 1977 his father bought a cottage and proceeded to tear it down and construct a prefab.  Ken spent 10 weeks helping his Dad and learning.  His Dad is 82 and still in the garage puttering.  Ken feels his brother pays more attention to particulars while he is more disruptive.
He moved up through the leagues, playing goalie for older teams, which was a great experience.  He attended Keiller McKay HS which was sold to the Catholic Board and became Don Bosco.
He became engaged at 21 and they moved to Sweden to play hockey and then joined a traveling team but by age 28 he saw younger kids coming up and moved back though with the benefits of a great cultural education.  He went to U of T for Political Science and graduated thinking he'd go into law but his daughter was born and he went to work.  His daughter is the centre of his life now - she's an equestrian and rides for the Canadian Junior Team.  She's at Ryerson taking sociology and hopes to join the RCMP.  At the moment she's volunteering with the Toronto Police Mounted Unit.
His Uncle Marsh lied about his age in 1944 and joined the Army but was found out and released so in 45 he managed to enlist in the Navy but Hiroshima happened and he was to be demobbed so he joined the Air Force.  Served in all three arms.
While working for a landscaping company his boss sold him some equipment and leased him some contracts, starting mostly with grass and gardens.  He took courses at Sheridan and started on hardscapes etc.  His joining Rotary in 1993 took his work to a new level, tripling through the decade.
Everything starts with drainage.  The water has to have a place to go.  But not too fast or there's erosion.  So if the level drops too much, obstacles are needed to slow the water.  The company did surrounds for pools and then moved into full installations.  This takes planning to a new level because the ages and activities of the family have to be taken into account.  Older individuals may need more steps with lower risers, for instance.  He also tries to plan plantings so there's something always blooming.  Now he has years of experience and is happy to advise.
Pools create their own challenges.  Fibreglass pools are shaped which means the hole they dig has to be precisely formed, firm and level.  The largest pool they've installed, by lifting it over a house, was 44 ft. and if that's off level it would be obvious pretty quickly.
He's always been interested in huskies and has bred lots over the years.  Other major interests are his daughter and the water, which is what brought him here to a place on Champlain Rd.  He's happy and proud to be in this Club where he's already made new friends.
Ken Pickering's Classification Bill Molesworth 2016-05-04 04:00:00Z 0

Mental Health Week

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 04, 2016
John McMallum has served on many Boards and councils, notably the Task Force on Mental Health Implementation and as Vice Chair, for 13 years, of the Parole Board.  Seeing how badly people with mental health issues are treated has led him to Waypoint and to make an effort to see people offered a little support and to get the general population pay more attention.
1 in 5 suffer - this is twice the number of people with diabetes and one and a half times the number of all cancer victims.  But, where's the empathy?
It costs us all - lost productivity could total as much as 50 billion a year.  Over 70% of the unemployed are affected by issues.
Glen Close says we need more insight, more candour, more conversations and we need to move beyond the stigma and recognize that we are discriminating.  Only a third of those who suffer get the help they need and a large part of the cause is that fear of discrimination is a barrier to seeking help.  There are 4,000 suicides a year in Canada and suicide is the second largest killer of those 15 - 24 after car accidents.
A lot of people feel they are fine and a major myth of mental illness is that it won't affect 'me'.  But John cited two examples - one of his own and one his wife's - that shows it can hit anyone.  A major accident with violent deaths left John with vivid images and, though he was physically fine, he wasn't sleeping.  A year of treatment helped though he still gets woken up sometimes.  His son died three years ago and his wife suffered mini strokes and then some effects from medication after dental surgery and it took help from family and staff at Waypoint to help her regain her footing.  Ask for help if you think you need it.  Let Mental Health Week act as a Launchpad to awareness.  Help normalize mental illness and encourage others to recognize it and treat it like any other illness.
Anita Federici said talking about it has a positive effect and a sense of humour, community and family relationships are important for good mental health.  Anita has a history of cottaging in the area and has family here so when the possibility of working at Waypoint arose, she took it.  She takes an Evidence Based approach to treatment in a therapeutic environment.  Mental Health is a continuum, like Physical Health and we all suffer from stress or pressures on occasion so we need to raise awareness.  We all go to the dentist or the doctor so why is seeing a psychologist so different?
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy can reduce the effects of PTSD in 12 or so treatments by relating thoughts, behaviours and emotions to each other.  Dialectical Behaviour Therapy changes behaviours and teaches us to accept ourselves.
Mindfullness practice is associated with lower pain, less anxiety by reducing the emotional centres in the brain and shrinking the fight or flight response.  Peel Regional Police have been undertaking 8 week courses in this and MRI studies support the benefits.  It takes your mind off your to do list, brings you back to the moment where you have emotional control and reduces activation levels in the frontal lobes.  It's difficult at first but has a big impact if practiced.
Mental Health Week Bill Molesworth 2016-05-04 04:00:00Z 0

Science in the Schools

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 20, 2016
Terry Hudson is a microbiologist and the outreach and development specialist for the organization Science in the Schools.  She had some experiments that are used in the class room that are simple but effective in teaching young people.  She had Aaron try to blow up a long balloon and he couldn't do it - but she held the balloon up and with one breath created a low pressure area that created an air current that filled it.  Appreciating and understanding the world around us is the foundation of science and the organization tries to foster innovation in youth.
Their mission is to engage children to enquire and to excite them and develop interest them in science as a career.  Their vision is every child engaged in doing in a relevant and fun way.
They try to show the marvel of existence and give kids an opportunity to flourish.
It was started by two mothers in Ajax who took workshops to 40 classrooms and the demand grew.  The registered as a charity in 1999 and are now moving into Alberta.  They have visited with 7 million students so far.  Starting in kindergarten with sessions like Never Say Ugh to a Bug and with hands on sessions geared to all grades they try to connect kids to the real world and to develop their skill sets.  The programs are delivered by experts and the courses support teacher development and can be seen as field trips in the classroom.
Skill levels in Ontario are dropping and are dropping in comparison to other countries like Japan.  Acquisition of these skills through the educational system is vital to deal with modern scientific and moral issues.
They have visited 2,100 schools with 82 different topics discussed reaching 630,000 students a year in 310 communities, including some French ones.  It's a three way partnership between the Community, the Education system and Business that works to develop a trained workforce.  The schools pay a small fee but donations help.  Each session costs $194.00, taxes included.
Science in the Schools Bill Molesworth 2016-04-20 04:00:00Z 0

Forrest Willett

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 10, 2016
Christine introduced Forrest who spoke to the Club a while ago about his recovery but who is now back with a new book and new insights.
Forrest started with some humerous illustrations of the way people can see themselves and encouraged us to laughter as it produces endorphins that make us feel better then went on to describe his early life as one with several homes and cars and boats, lots of comforts like bathrooms and and example of love from parents but then went back over the list with illustrations - lots of homes because they moved all the time, lots of bathrooms because they lived in a triplex, lots of cars, though they were on blocks and a boat with trees growing in it that they played in.
His dad was violent and his mom left when he was 6 so he got to know the police, children's aid and the example of how not to treat children.  But his life was one of imagination and he became a successful business man in the area - by Oct. 2002 he had 7 businesses and 3 homes and was planning to upgrade his car to a bigger BMW.  A prospective buyer took it, and him, on a test drive and, while talking on his phone crashed the car and turned Forrest into a 2 year old in a 31 year old body.  He had to relearn everything, reading, writing, etc. and he plunged into anxiety and depression, went through 14 operations, took speech, occupational and physical therapy but also took pain pills, anti- depressants and became suicidal.  One morning watching breakfast television the Chicken Soup for the Soul guy was on talking about look at where you are, look at where you want to be and start setting yourself some goals and he tried it.  Now he's a published author, a motivational speaker who tries to help others who are afraid to do what's next.  He works with the VP of Dubai Airport and Jack Canfield and the NFL among others and has written a new book - 12 Hugs to Happiness which prescribes 2.5 hugs a day per person - also an endorphin promoter.
Whatever you want in life, give it and it will come back to you.  Accept early lessons but break free from them, get out of your comfort zone and don't compare yourself to others and wish for what they've got - steal your own joy and say yes.  He realized he didn't know what colour his mother's eyes were so after 35 years without speaking he called her and asked, despite a fear of rejection, and opened up a conversation.  He had a fear of heights and went sky diving.  It's good for yourself, good for your family and even good for strangers.
He told the story of Bopsy, a 6 year old who was dying in Phoenix and whose dream of being a fireman was realized by the local crew who made him a uniform and took him on calls for a day and even showed up in the hospital room by climbing through the window.  We all have dreams - help each other realize them.
Forrest Willett Bill Molesworth 2016-04-10 04:00:00Z 0

Anna Hartmann's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 30, 2016
Joyce pointed out that she'd inducted Anna - Andre had sponsored her.
Anna was born Jan 8, 1985 in Midland, her father a teacher at MSS and her mother an elementary school teacher.  Her sister also became a teacher.  Her father's family goes back in Midland - Hartmann's Hardware was her great uncle and her mother's father was a Principal in Penetang.  Her grandparent's cottages gave her and her sister introductions to canoeing and camping and bathing in buckets - a recently established tradition among Midland Rotarians.  Even though her generation started out with a TV with bunny ears she is familiar with technology and is comfortable in both worlds.  Her mother's family cottage was a summer long escape while growing up.
She went to Regent and St. T's which she liked for the sense of community and activities run by people volunteering which has been part of her impulse to give back.  She was on the volleyball team there and they won OFSAA while she was in gr. 11.  She joined the team in Guelph when she started there and spent the first year learning to sit on the bench.
A friend of hers was a Rotary exchange student who went to Denmark and Anna fit a trip to visit, with time in Copenhagen, on a March break - giving her the taste for travel.  For her first two years at Guelph she took philosophy and parties but for her third year she transferred to Bullarat in Australia, near where her sister lived and took all phys ed classes, waitressed and travelled.  Back in Guelph she gave up volleyball and filled the time with a full time job and graduated in psychology.
Meanwhile she'd met Chris, also a volleyball player and it turned out their mothers were old friends.
She moved to Toronto with high hopes and first worked as the only white person in a Thai restaurant and between being deaf in one ear and the language that was problematic.  So she became a Dating Consultant which turned out to be a site for people of high net worth who were too busy to cruise and an unfair fee schedule so she decided to go back to school and signed up for Fund Raising and Resource Management at Georgian.  It was correspondence and Chris managed to take his courses on line too so they went to Thailand for the year - studying in the morning and touristing in the afternoon.
Returned to Midland she took an internship at CLH which turned into a job and she is still volunteering there.  Then an opportunity with the first paid position at the Cancer Support Centre and she is now the Director of Philanthropy.
She took up running and tried a half marathon but felt terrible and it turned out to be type 1 Diabetes, perhaps as a result of damage to her system from  bout of dengue fever in Thailand.  A whole new set of routines required for this but she can manage it and was thrilled to welcome Will who is now looking forward to being a brother.
Andre thanked Anna for everything she brings to the Club.
Anna Hartmann's Classification Bill Molesworth 2016-03-30 04:00:00Z 0

Steve Renault's Investing

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 23, 2016
Kathy W said the Steve is a father and grandfather, a hockey coach, a sailor and a maple syrup maker.  After a successful career in financial management he has an insight into investing's risks and rewards.
Steve touched on highlights of his career that led him to be able to retire at 40 and pursue other interests but he has also worked to inform people about the problems associated with investing.
He says that most people don't really know what they own or how they are invested or in what.  57% of people don't have a plan, 71% want help and 61% feel financial stress is a major factor in their lives and that can lead to health issues.
He wrote his book - Mid-Life Crises - to help people connect their money to their lives and to give some peace of mind.  First, he is risk averse and declines to leverage, eg. mortgaging the house to invest.  Too many bubbles have shown that to be a mistake.  Second, most brokerages look to turnover on the short term as success and don't plan for the long term, which would be more in the individual's interest.  He says "We want your money and we want it all the time."  So you should understand what you own and monitor changes.
Asset allocation is flawed, according to Steve.  A - always avoid risk.  B - investing should be based on underlying assets, not on age and not on hope.  For instance, recent growth is not based on productivity increases, it's based on layoffs.  Currently we are looking at high debt levels and job uncertainty, if not scarcity and Canada, Europe and Japan are in recession because of dropping commodity prices and because personal income has not kept up with asset prices.
Demographics - young people are borrowing and spending, which is inflationary.  Seniors are selling and downsizing which is deflationary but the boomers have pushed everything up to a point that the next generation can't afford.
Steve says we need more financial literacy.  Seniors currently are in bonds which have been good for them because interest rates have stayed low but do they know what will happen if rates start to go up?  The value of their bonds will drop because the rates are fixed.  But equities can be problematic too - they are a piece of a business and business goes in cycles so, if you can buy near the bottom of one great, but know when to get out too.  Unfortunately, optimism plays too great a role leading to exuberance through denial which leads to depression - financial and mental.  We've had Nasdaq, the housing boom and now we're in an era of cheap money.  Interest rates are so low that there are few options for central banks if we do slide into another recession.  We do need to spend now but we need to save something for emergencies - look at Alberta.
He said again that investment firms are in it for the money, our money, and that complex terminology keeps us disconnected from  the process.  It's time to take responsibility and ask questions.
Steve Renault's Investing Bill Molesworth 2016-03-23 04:00:00Z 0

Skinny Boats

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 09, 2016
John Lister introduced Steve Killing who has spoken to the Club before about the high speed America's Cup boats and who is now working on 'rowboats'.  He was a PH fellow in 1992, is the President of Huronia Players, was the Express Yachts designer and designer of the True North effort.  Recently a consultant for the NZ team he is now working on rowing shells.
Steve said that records are always being broken but there's some debate about whether it's just the athlete's efforts or technology that should be credited.  So they put current contenders in older boats and found times were generally slower.  But not only are the new boats faster, designers now try to tailer the boat to the athlete.  For example a strong rower might need more stability than a rower who relies more on technique and so would get a wider boat.
Hudson is a manufacturer of shells in London for all levels of athlete and who sells  mostly to clubs but a good performance in international competition is good advertising.  So they dedicate their efforts to high tech solutions using carbon fibre to develop new shapes.  Even the smallest improvement, 1%, can be huge in close finishes.
They build boats for athletes ranging from 130 to 230 lbs and so the boats go from 24 ft 6 inches to 29ft 6.  Generally a narrower boat is faster but at some point stability becomes threatened.  In the big crew boats the boat needs to accommodate the rear of the front rower and the feet of the tail rower which means rounding it out a bit. 
Olympic funding is based on past performance and Canada's rowers have been doing well recently so there is some money for research and they have been doing comparison testing using computer simulations and tank testing.  The weight of the crew can alter the resting shape of the boat - bending it in the middle - so they have to pre-bend the boat so the water line levels when loaded.
Olympic racing is held in lanes but the Cambridge-Oxford race is on a river with bends and some shenanigans, including trying to knock the steering control off the back deck of the competing boat with an oar so Steve designed a mechanism that is covered.  But collisions can happen with other boats and docks so these carefully designed boats had what looked like a tennis ball duct taped onto the bow and Steve has incorporated and aerodynamic design into the build process.
An 8 can achieve 10 knots.  His son Jonathan is working on a canoe on hydrofoils to try for the muscle power speed record with is close to 15 knots.  His team got the boat up on the foils at about 5 knots but it's a phenomenal project.
George thanked Steve for his time and asked for hydrodynamically designed water skiis. 
Skinny Boats Bill Molesworth 2016-03-09 05:00:00Z 0

Update from the Cancer Support Centre

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 24, 2016
Jamie Tripp introduced Christine, the Exec. Dir. and our own Anna who's Director of Philanthropy.  They thought a bit of a review of what is happening now contrasted with some history of how hard it was for patients before might be helpful to the Club which has been so supportive.  Kathy K., on video, talked about how her experience as a patient informed her efforts as an organizer and how hard it is to work with and then lose people but how important it is to have a network when the diagnoses is made.
Christine said the Centre is in its 5th year and has established roots in the community and hopes to work, over the next 5, to build a canopy.
The Strategic Priorities established a couple of years ago called for the Centre to have a year of costs in hand and to raise $500,000.00 towards a new building.  They have made a start on both but have a long way to go.
The Centre is now open 5 days a week and offering 42 programs - those that are at capacity are repeated so there are 50 hours of programing a week.  190 people a month are taking part now, up from 147.  A skill based Board has been recruited and it is a certified charity and insured and it meets Imagine Canada's standards.  Terms of reference for all committees have been drawn up.  Annual budget approaches $250,000.00.  A Trillium grant if funding the Exec. Dir. position.
The lease on their current location expires at the end of March but they've known for a while that the space is too small and have been looking at alternatives.  A couple of big fundraising efforts in 2015 helped to raise both money and awareness and they intend to continue to spread the word.
Anna said they did not receive any Ministry funding so they rely on individuals and local business but they are applying for grants and will pursue fundraising activities.  She showed us a brief video on McKenna Murray, a young High School student who started the Pink Pumpkin campaign which has grown so dramatically and this year raised $5,475.00.
The organization bases its efforts on the 4 pillars of programming - Wellness - promoting fitness though yoga, pilates, etc.  Support - from peers and professionals.  Social - building relationships and Art - promoting mental health and fine motor development.
Update from the Cancer Support Centre Bill Molesworth 2016-02-24 05:00:00Z 0

Jim MacMillan's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 17, 2016
Jim introduced Jacob who played a little mood music throughout the talk and joined him on a couple of songs at the end.
Jim said he was born in 1956 and the opportunity to review the last 6 decades has been a trip.  James Clarence MacMillan came back from Vimy to become Jim's grandfather though they never knew each other - he died at 41 after marrying Hazel Norton and becoming a captain on the boats.  Jim's father Doug is 88 now but was only 15 when his father died and he shipped out as an engineer for 10 years until he married and came ashore.  Barbara Jean McLung was from Saskatchewan but inherited a cottage at Go Home Lake from her uncle and, according to Jim, 'they've been going there since 1951' - for 5 years in vitro, I guess.
His parents started a house on Victoria but for the first while managed only the basement and Jim bathed in a big tub (pictured) sometimes and sometimes in a smaller one.  Ergo the pre fine.
He had lots of pictures - working on boats, with his pet squirrel, as a pouty teenager, smoking and drinking at the same time.  Skiing became a big thing - at one time Midland was the ski jumping centre of Eastern Ontario with three jumps and Jim feels the experiences on the hills were invaluable.  And motorcycles.
Rotary played a role in the family's life early on - his dad bought a lottery ticket for $1.75 and won motor boat which made trips to the cottage a lot easier, no begging for rides.  It was a big deal for a blue collar family.
A teacher introduced him to music which was a terrific experience and he played some festivals but when he went to Guelph to take Human Physiology and Kinetics it took a back seat.  He managed to quit smoking at University and he's glad to say all his family have since quit too.  He pursued skiing, taking up ski racing and becoming nationally ranked for a while and coaching the woman's team.  He always came back to Midland for summer jobs and learned how to deal with groups, how to speak to groups and lead while at Historical Parks and it was there he met Joan Christine Powell.
They married and went to Queen's for teacher's degrees and then took positions 600 miles north of Thunder Bay where Joan taught gr. 3 and he taught music to all grades and wrote music and made his first album.  Expecting a baby the next year they didn't go back but they bought a house and he entered the music business which he describes as 20% playing and 80% business.  On the advice of Robbert Hartog he incorporated a company that still exists and got into organization being the founding President of Ontario Council of Folk Festivals and a founding Director of Festivals Ontario.  At a Contact conference he managed to book 2.5 years worth of work as a young persons' entertainer which took him 500,000 kms to every Board and Library around.  He played the Roy Thomson Hall, the Calgary Olympics and at Osaka as a rep of Ontario.
Through the 90's arts funding dried up and he took a job at Regent teaching music and coaching and then moved to Elmvale HS to assist the students who were struggling.
Time was running out so he ran through the remaining pictures and then he and Jacob played a couple of tunes for us.
Jim MacMillan's Classification Bill Molesworth 2016-02-17 05:00:00Z 0

Report on GBGH

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 10, 2016
Karen ran through a quick series of slides showing the recommendations and costings of the most recent report on the GBGH.  The role of the LHIN is apparently changing and collaboration with them will become more important.  Focusing on government roles, the staff and the financial situation are priorities.
There were 200 interviews and 108 recommendations.  Attitudes are a problem and an organizational redesign is being considered.  The evaluation of the Board and the CEO will be linked.  Medical quality and accountability will be studied.
Closing the cafeteria doesn't mean there won't be one - it would be contracted out.  Selling Penetang is another discussion.
14 of the recommendations are being actively studied at the moment.  Many of the problems mentioned are not unusual though that doesn't mean they shouldn't be addressed.  The hospital is in pursuit of sustainability, quality and safety.
Obstetrics is a big discussion with driving in the winter a major concern but currently there are only 180 births a year with as many as 270 already going elsewhere - Collingwood mostly.  Midwives might be introduced to Christian Island.  There are suggestions - a new doctor was recruited but change is slow and even with significant investment it might be 5 - 7 years before numbers go up again.
A different focus might be to try generating income through home care services etc. and positioning to deal with the aging population with care and rehab services.
Seasonality was not addressed - the numbers are included and the Provincial formula is being reviewed but it is exceedingly complex.
The recommendations were a whole and other changes are dependent all being acted on.  If obstetrics is closed that gives room for increased ICU beds and other changes that follow from that.  If obstetrics stays, the sequence breaks and new considerations have to be made.  All is being driven by the need to balance the budget.
Report on GBGH Bill Molesworth 2016-02-10 05:00:00Z 0

Luna's Chile

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 06, 2016
The flag of Chile is blue for the sky, white for the snow, red for the blood of freedom and has a star for the power of government.  There are 17,772,871 people in the country with 4,628,320 of them in Santiago which, being centrally located, divides the country between North and South.  It's so long - over 4,300 km - that it experiences every climate except tropical, but it averages only 177 km across.  Most of it is mountains, rising to over 6,900 metres, and only about 20% can be called flat and they have a major earthquake about every 5 years.  Santiago is in a valley so has a smog problem between cars, factories and lots of smokers.
Winter temperatures drop to 4 C below and there's lots of skiing, 16 resorts with 4 close to Santiago and one of them topping out at 3,334 metres.
Cultural influences are indigenous and European, Spanish especially.  The current President, Michelle Bachelet, served between 2006 and 2010 and was re-elected in 2014 to serve till 2018.  The currency is the peso which trades at 700 to the dollar and the economy is rated 5th in South America but the commodity downturn has had an effect.  They mine a lot of copper and lithium.  They export grapes, cranberries, wine and fish and import petroleum, electronics and telecommunications equipment.
Luna took us on a slide show of some Chilean highlights - they cover everything in colour in Valparaiso, everything, they have some strange statues on Rapa Nui, or Easter Island, they can get a really good look at the stars in El Valle de la Luna which is high desert and home to telescopes and in the south they have magnificent scenery of deep valleys, high waterfalls and low temperatures.
Seafood is plentiful, a popular dish is Curanto which is a stew with everything.  They have fruit for breakfast, Luna's not too keen on cereal.  Everybody's a soccer fan and Chile has been a World Cup contender 7 times but has also earned gold medals in tennis twice and, in the country, there's a rodeo culture which she thinks is hard on the animals.  The population is mostly Catholic, then Protestant but there are still strong believers in the old ways. 
Dwayne thanked Luna for a great presentation and showed her that some Canadians do hug.
Luna's Chile Bill Molesworth 2016-01-06 05:00:00Z 0

The 55+ Games

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 09, 2015
Chester has a hard time saying no to Bryan so he's the Chair and has been working on the games since 2014.  All 4 communities are involved and will be participating when they take place between Aug. 9 and 11 in 2016.  They expect 1,400 participants in 19 events and they are looking for help with dollars and volunteers.
Bryan is the contract manager of the event, a Government of Ontario initiative to promote participation among those over 55 and to celebrate active living while encouraging a social, fun and fellowship event.
The municipalities have provided their facilities and staff time at no cost and are pitching in with some dollars.  The Provincial Government is the major sponsor.  Participants will have all competed at District contests to be selected to come here.  Souvenirs have been contracted out and there is an official games photographer.  Accommodations have been arranged, including 180 rooms at Georgian College and other places in Orillia and Barrie.  Food services are required for all over the three days.  Many will be bused in and registration will take place at the NSSRC. The welcome and opening ceremonies will be at the Penetang Arena.  Games will be conducted on the 10th and 11th with the closing ceremonies the evening of the 11th.
They are trying to raise $70,000.00 which will go to signs, posters, ads and other aspects and recruiting 500 volunteers for about 3,000 hours of work.  There's another 3,000 hours being put in by paid staff.
Bryan feels sports tourism is a good way to generate interest in North Simcoe and that the co-operation between the 4 communities is strengthening ties so that we can build on these types of events again in the future, eg. the winter games for seniors and for youth.
The games travel and communities must submit an exhaustive application and there's a chance they could come around here again.  It also explains why there are no water sports as many towns don't have access like ours.  They hope to break even and if there's a profit it goes to a legacy fund which is dedicated to another seniors event locally. 
The 55+ Games Bill Molesworth 2015-12-09 05:00:00Z 0

The Foundation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 02, 2015
Joyce told us that Arch Klumpf started the foundation in 1917 but it took a while to get going - only $700.00 in 6 years but then PH died and memorial donations poured in.  15 Trustees, including Bryn Styles, now oversee 160 million in funds and another 23 in the Endowment fund and 70 in Polio Plus.
The Annual Fund returns funds to the Districts after 3 years through matching grants.  The Endowment Fund concentrates on water and filters and Polio Plus pays for the vaccines while Polio Partners supplies the T shirts, etc.  Only two countries still report Polio so we're 'this close'.  2.5 billion have been immunized and over 50 billion has been saved in health care costs.
The Foundation supports educational initiatives with Ambassadorial Scholarships, Rotary World Peace studies at one of the 6 Schools for Peace and Conflict Resolution and through Vocational Training.
When Rotary turned 100 it developed a new Strategic Plan focusing on Fellowship, Integrity, Diversity, Service and Leadership.
There are many ways to contribute - through Club activities, by donation, by bequest.  Each has its advantages and rewards so check with Joyce about how to help.
Dean thanked Joyce for her talk and for all she does for Rotary at the Club and District level. 
The Foundation Bill Molesworth 2015-12-02 05:00:00Z 0

Larry Fox

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 14, 2015
Karen reported that she had met Larry at the Legion with a bunch of others from the east coast and she was happy to say that Larry had met Leona there as well and they got married last week.  Larry was born in Midland in Sept. of 1935 and signed up at 17 as an engine mechanic.  The trip to boot camp was an education in itself - a trip to the big city and then to St. Jean, Quebec for 6 weeks of marching and trying to learn to shave though it wasn't really necessary.  But he must have impressed - he was a crack shot - and Sir Morris recruited him and tried to turn him into a killer, though he didn't really want to be one.  He did learn cat burgling and they had a Ghurka try to teach him how to sneak in the bush.  He was set to sentry duty to catch his teacher but never saw a thing.  Two hours later he strolled out of a nearby tent and Larry though he'd been had until he tried to walk and found his shoelaces tied together.
He took a cover as a flight engineer and flew on a transport to England which he remembers as being mostly loud for 11 hours.  After a 6 day layover they gave him a partner - Nomad - and sent them to Hungary where they were supposed to get hold of some documents they didn't want the Russians to have.  They were dropped in country carrying explosives.  At one point they gave some to a 15 year old who rolled under a tank and rolled out just before it blew.  
They commandeered a troop carrier, a tracked vehicle with traction but not speed and found themselves talking to a Russian so they offered him some wine and when he opened his tank cover, they tossed in a Molotov cocktail.  A second tank had it's track blown and someone opened the turret and fired into it.
Then they took over a staff car which was faster but they were being chased with Nomad firing at the rad of their pursuer.  They were trying to get to the Austrian border but were intercepted by a group of East Germans under 2 Russian officers.  Larry shot the guy with the radio and then tried wounding a couple so the rest would be held up.  They were moving but Nomad stayed back and fired but was hit in the back while trying to catch up.  Larry shot 4 of the rest and took the briefcase and left Nomad where he was.  He felt that as it was November 11 it was a good time to remember Nomad, who never came back.
He went on 4 other missions - to Poland twice by submarine, to Czechoslovakia by parachute and across Europe by train.  He finds as he gets older his dreams are fewer and less vivid but in the years immediately after he often woke himself up screaming.  These actions and those of others were not acknowledged at the time or later.  
Fred said that Larry had thought he was under the Official Secrets Act but that doesn't seem to be the case and he's now talking about these events and there will be a book soon.  Referring to the dreams, Fred said Larry had suffered PTSD which has affected the rest of his life and he would have had to suffer that in silence because no one knew what he'd been doing.  He gets the pension of a mechanic in the Air Force.
Larry Fox Bill Molesworth 2015-11-14 05:00:00Z 0

Roma's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 04, 2015
Bruce was happy to introduce Roma and proud to have sponsored her two years ago after she went on the HART III trip and got interested in Rotary.
Roma is of Polish descent and explained that there are different ways to say her name depending on whether the speaker is annoyed, loving, related or lustful.  She started out in Oshawa and went to Durham for her Hygienist and to U of T for Dental Assistant.  I think she has a diploma in teaching adults as well.  Her son has an LLB and is working on an MBA.  She worked in a dental office and then did forensic dentistry (identifying corpses by their teeth) in Toronto.  She's been in Midland for 25 years and started on her own 4 years ago.  She's adventurous and has jumped out of planes, flown hang gliders and hot air balloons - landing one on the 401 once - and she built her own house and she loves the Tango.
Her family history is complicated but a story of hardship and hard work.  Her father was in a large group of Poles taken to Siberia when the Russians and Germans were allies but when Hitler invaded the guards abandoned them there.  A General formed them up and they marched through Tazikistan and south and ended up in the North African campaign.  Her father was an artillery man and a sharpshooter, at one point saved by a medal on his beret that deflected a bullet.  They fought up Italy as well, including at Monte Cassino.
Her grandfather was shot in the Katyn Forest as an officer leaving his wife pregnant and with three children.  They got out and also ended up in Africa and she had the one child and then, circumstances being what they were, had another but kept food on the table.
When they were trying to get on a boat to Canada Roma's grandmother was turned back because she didn't have a husband so she picked one there and they came here.  The result, for Roma, was that no hardship she suffered was ever enough to get any sympathy - don't you complain, you don't know suffering.  They had been well off in Poland but arrived here with nothing and made their way, partly as an artist in Montreal.  The other effect of all this is that the family always shared with others.  Roma feels helping the refugees is important but equally important is making sure they have something to do to give them dignity.  
Roma told it all much better than I can write it - a harsh story made light by her presentation but a lesson on the importance of welcoming the hard done by to a new opportunity.
Roma's Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-11-04 05:00:00Z 0

The Auction 2015-16

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 28, 2015
Jason reminded us that the Auction is an annual event that has the members collecting donated items through November for the actual sale which is held in February.  Proceeds have, in the last few years, gone to the Trauma Centre, the Next Door, and Chigamik.  Last year it raised $33,000.00 and over the 37 years the Club has put it on it has raised over a million.  Jason feels that most businesses are familiar with the project now and are willing to participate so the goal is $50,000.00 this year.
The paper copies of the contracts are back.  It is easier to take with you and for the donor to sign for verification.  There are new promotional cards in the packages to give to donors for display in their place of business advertising both their participation and the fact that it's coming.  There will be exposure for all donors on line and in the flyer that goes out with the Mirror.  There will be no reserve bids - the feeling is that if it doesn't sell the donor gets the promotional value for nothing.
Once you've got a contract you log in to record it and edit any changes from last year.  An explanation of the process was emailed to everyone but some systems might have regarded it as spam - the word Auction - so if you didn't get it , check with Jason.
If the donor asks, suggest a gift certificate because they seem to sell closest to their value, which is good for us, and because it brings the buyer into the store, which is good for the donor.  If it's an item, try to get a picture.  If it's a certificate, a business logo might be good.  If there are duplicate contracts on the site and the donor is only giving once this year, delete the extra records.  We can always put more in again if they up it next year.  If they do give more items than last year there's a button to make duplicates.
We've all been given contracts we've held before but if you can think of a prospective donor talk to Jason and he'll make a new contract.  There's a list, scroll right down, of all the contracts out so you can check to see if you're prospect is already on it and there will be a page for trading prospects if there's someone you have a relationship with.
The Team Competition is on and the winners will be announced at Hamper Night, Nov. 25.  Any items donated to you go to Bruce or Tripp's.  Value of donations should be at least $50.00.  If someone has several items they can be listed separately to give the donor more exposure but if it's a large value it might be better to leave it as one and get it highlighted on the web page.  Check with Jason and the donor as to preferences.
The Auction 2015-16 Bill Molesworth 2015-10-28 04:00:00Z 0

Vocational Service Award

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 21, 2015
Jamie Tripp said the Award was introduced by Fred Hacker to honour those who represent the ideals of Rotary through their vocation.  
Maureen was pleased to present this year's award to Nancy Spiker.  Nancy and her husband Bill opened Passion for Fashion in 1991 to offer a selection of fashionable clothes at reasonable prices.  They moved here from the West with their daughter and their son who has heart disease and autism.  They found a supportive community and have returned the favour by sponsoring a fashion show to benefit a variety of charities.  For 12 years it was the GBGH, another 6 supported the Wye Marsh and in 2011 they raised $9,000.00 for Community Living and their camps and their support of employment program.  CLH residents have participated and they develop a lot of confidence and ties with the community. 
There have also been special events, the next will be on Nov. 12 at the MCC, in support of Big Brothers, Big Sisters, GBGH Foundation, job creation at CLH, the Y and the Hero Centre and their efforts to get work for people with exceptionalities.
Nancy offered her thanks for the honour, saying that so many others contribute to the efforts including her husband, Bill and members of their family, the staff at the store and partners from the business community and the many volunteers.  It's great to live in a place that cares and she thanked the Club for it commitment to a better world.
Vocational Service Award Bill Molesworth 2015-10-21 04:00:00Z 0

Shelter Boxes

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 14, 2015
Mora introduced Suzie Parker, a charter member of the Innisfill Club and its Past President.  She and Shawn have two sons.  Shes in HR Management and is co-owner of a staffing agency.
She said she'd learned about the Shelter Box program in New Orleans soon after the Haiti earthquake and she and Shawn have since become ambassadors for the organization.  The aim is for the boxes to help stabilize and protect people after a disaster by providing shelter and supplies.  Boxes are pre-positioned around the world with a large reserve in a warehouse in Cornwall, where HQ is.  Volunteers are ready to help with boxes tailored to local conditions.  Most have blankets, water filters, solar lamps, mosquito nets and cooking utensils.  There are boxes for colder climates with more blankets and less mosquito netting.  And adjustments are made for cultural differences - sleeping bags were removed from boxes sent to Pakistan because they looked like shrouds in use there, blankets were included instead.  $1,200.00 gets a box to its site.
Boxes have been sent to 270 disasters in 90 countries and helped a million people.  They are portable and can be carried by one person.  Even though they are stored in locales around the world, they still need to be transported to the site so the question is often, how?  By plane or boat?  From which storage site?  It's a balance between need, risk and cost.
Rotary has been an important partner in identifying areas of need and by helping locally with the paperwork.  Currently there are efforts ongoing in 9 countries including Nepal, an effort that Midland has assisted.  They had a 7.9 earthquake with a 7.2 aftershock that added destruction on top of destruction.  8.1 million people need help and few buildings are safe.  A special box of school supplies goes with every hundred boxes in an effort to occupy kids productively while they are homeless.  There are also 100 in Lesbos, though they are used more for transients than for permanent residences as people pass through in overwhelming numbers.
Suzie brought the thanks of the organization for the support from our Clubs, until the next disaster.
Shelter Boxes Bill Molesworth 2015-10-14 04:00:00Z 0

Community Reach

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 23, 2015
Amanda said she'd been working at Community Reach since January and had asked Rick to talk about the transit service and how important that is to people who don't have transportation.
Rick said that over the last 12 years the program had provided over 30,000 rides - all by volunteers.  The service is free to clients and not only does it offer transport, it often results in strong relationships between the volunteer and the traveler.  And it is more than just rides - some people need help with the activities of daily living, with shopping, with managing their appointments.  With the help of a volunteer, people build confidence in the real world and the helpful and considerate volunteers are a huge support to an appreciative clientele.  
Jim Anderson, who mostly drives the Wheelchair van, has driven transit clients and remembered three.  One is an elderly widow who is fit but has medical appointments out of town and she pays the staff with baking.  Another widow he has worked with lives in a house in Port McNicoll, on her own as her only son is in Calgary, and Jim has driven her to the day out program at Georgian Village - an opportunity to socialize she wouldn't have otherwise.  And the third is only middle aged, though Jim seems to think he is too, but has a visual impairment and she needs to get from Lafontaine to a specialist in the City.  Imagine trying to do that on your own.  Jim says the service makes it possible for people to do things we take for granted.
Rick said the volunteers all deserve a lot of credit.  They make a major commitment and they bring dignity, confidence, independence, connections, health, freedom and opportunities to people who need help.  CR serves all of North Simcoe, down to Elmvale and over to Coldwater and towards Honey Harbour.  There's a small population in a large area and as many as 10% don't have cars.  The drivers are all defensive driving trained.
Mileage runs, on average, at about $31.00 per trip - to the GTA is over $100.00.  CR is supported by the 4 Communities and the United Way but they do fundraising and accept in kind support as well.  And they are always looking for volunteers.
Community Reach Bill Molesworth 2015-09-23 04:00:00Z 0

Economic Development Corporation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 09, 2015
Dave Mink said we are all concerned about the economic viability of the area and have noted business closings like CCL, Atlas Block, General Mills.  We all have our reasons for living here but a strong economic base is vital.  Sharon Vegh is the Director of the Economic Development Corporation of North Simcoe.  She's served on several Boards, spent 12 years as a Trade Commissioner, 5 years at York U and, to top it off, has an MLIS.
Sharon spoke to the Power of 4 which refers both to the 4 communities that are working together and to the 4 sectors of the economy the Corp is focusing on, Agriculture, Manufacturing, Health Care and Tourism.  The Corp is only a year or so old so it is still establishing what it is and what it does but they have an updated business plan and vision statement, they are working on their focus and their branding, they are developing a web presence, have sponsored the first annual Prosperity Summit, worked on getting TV exposure, promote the Heart of Georgian Bay logo.
She works on Business Retention as well as new jobs - about two thirds of the time she is supporting existing companies, working with Bruce Stanton and the Minister in Ottawa.  She visits plants and encourages collaboration.  The Corporation supports investment in the Municipalities, promotes the use of agricultural fibres, develops an investment pipeline and a business data base.  She is the only employee of the Corp but there are 50,000 workers in Economic Development.
Agriculture in North Simcoe takes up 23,000 acres between 2,2300 farms and they enjoy an average income of $134,000.00.  
Georgian College is holding its food entrepreneur day on Oct. 28 at the College.
In Manufacturing the focus is on auto support, assisting with exports, developing networks and having a presence at Manufacturer's shows.
Health Care includes Chigamik, the three long term residences and GBGH which needs to be supported to maintain stability.
Tourism offers Wye Marsh, Discovery Harbour, the whole Bay, there's so much that tourists come and stay.
The Corp is working to make the area business friendly and investment ready and customer centric.  They are trying to reduce red tape, set uniform standards, develop a land inventory and formulate business prospects.  The second Prosperity Summit will be June 16 next year, Celebrating and Accelerating growth in NS.  Collaboration is a big part of its success and she welcomes questions or suggestions.
Economic Development Corporation Bill Molesworth 2015-09-09 04:00:00Z 0

Reid Asselstine and the Foundation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 02, 2015
Joyce says Reid is a Chemical Engineer and has a MEd and taught and administered schools in Orillia.  He became a Rotarian in 1990, was DG in 2000-01 and has been Foundation Co-ordinator for Easter Canada, served on the Pres. Rep Board, been a Foundation member and chair, a PH Society Co-ordinator, has won lots of awards, done other stuff and has 1 son and 3 grandchildren.
Reid says the Foundation is his charity of choice and he's been involved and supporting it all along.  It creates hope and understanding and gives others a chance.  He's been part of efforts in the DR, India and here and he encourages us all to take part.  Many think all the money goes out of the Country but that's not the case, a lot of projects get done here at home.  But the Foundation is not a first responder, as the Red Cross is, for instance.  The Foundation comes afterwards and helps to rebuild and to provide humanitarian relief.  It also is not for bricks and mortar.  It does things like bicycles to Cambodia, books, toys and clothing to a Cebu program the keep kids in school, water in Bali, education in Guatemala and dental care in the DR.  It works with other charities like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wheelchair Foundation to increase effectiveness.
The Foundation has 6 areas of focus - peace, disease, education, clean water, maternal health and local improvement.
Reid is pleased to be able to report that Nigeria is now 1 year clear of polio, which is huge as Nigeria used to be the gateway to central Africa for the disease.  It will be another year before it can be declared free but polio is only one plane flight away so the vaccinations must continue.
The Canadian government is promising $2 for each one raised over the next 4 years up to 12 million and then another 6 over 5 years to promote maternal health and increase local economic growth so the work can go on.
The Canadian branch of the Foundation used to just issue receipts but with this grant it is taking on distribution of funds which is a big step forward and a lot of work.  Reid mentioned an experience helping vaccinate children in India when a fellow volunteer commented 'that one will walk' - make the world a better place one individual at a time.
Most of the funding for the Foundation comes from donations and the PH Society recognizes those who donate $1,000.00 a year so Reid presented pins to Terry, Arnie and Yvonne in recognition and introduced Fred Hacker and Jamie Tripp as members too.
Reid Asselstine and the Foundation Bill Molesworth 2015-09-02 04:00:00Z 0

GB Cancer Centre

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 12, 2015
Joyce introduced Christine Forsythe, the Exec. Director of the Cancer Support Centre and Anna Hartmann, the Director of Philanthropy. 
Christine thanked the Club for their support especially Yvonne and The Girls' Night Out event that is now in its fifth year.  The Centre now has 200 registered members which is a bittersweet level of success.  It represents a lot more people who need help - only the tip of the iceberg, in fact - and, of course, not all stories end in joyous outcomes but the Centre tries to make the passage easier and to promote a sense of community though that makes each loss even harder to take.  However, being there for the members is a life affirming experience and, having been there herself, she knows how important the support is.
We saw a short video the highlighted the concept Finding hope where hope is hard to find.  Anna emphasized that the Centre is funded entirely by donations and the programs are free to the members.  There is life after diagnosis and the Centre is part of the healing.  It means that people are not alone and that they are helped to feel comfortable.  One person, for one year, $1,085.00.  Life is good, live each day as best we can.  This fall the Centre will be going to the community for support and they ask you to reflect that you may not need it today but you, or someone you know, may soon.
They thanked the Club again for it's support and encouraged us all to reach out. 
GB Cancer Centre Bill Molesworth 2015-08-12 04:00:00Z 0

Jerry Van Dyk's classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 11, 2015
Jerry says his last name comes from Van Dijk which means 'from the dike' and his first derives from Gerritt which means brave with a spear.  He had some pictures of his parents' families - his mother and father both had 6 siblings.  His father grew up on a farm and wanted to stay but the place went to his brother so he came to Canada and worked in factories to save money.  Jerry's mother came over separately - they had known each other back home but met again here and were married in the early 50's.  They were perfectionists so after Jerry was born they tried again to see if they could do better and so Jerry has a sister and a brother.  His brother stayed on the farm and has expanded it - from 60 milk cows to 130 - and the family - he and his wife have 9 children.
Jerry enjoyed life on the farm.  As kids they made their own fun but they worked hard too.  Days off, they went to their cousin's place and did the chores there. After a while he acquired a lime green pickup and got married but that only lasted about 5 years.  He liked farming and wanted to keep at it and determined to quit school at grade 10, which he did and worked for his Dad for 8 years but started to feel that he could use a day off here and there - friends from Town who got weekends off showed him there was a different life.
So he took some upgrading courses and found he was good at bookkeeping and he got enough credits to go to college and graduated as an accountant at 30.  He took a job with Emco that lasted 17 years but involved quite a bit of variety because he was moved from subsidiary to subsidiary up and down the 401, each job lasting a few years.  Then he got into some of the acquisitions and divestitures the company was involved in and worked on the sale of Kindred to Franke.  He saw that the company had a good product and a good profile and that Midland was a great place so he took a job with them that should have lasted 3 years and is now at 15.
Four years ago he met Helen who fills in his missing pieces and who has two of the greatest kids you could ask for.  Couldn't do better if you ordered them out of a catalogue.
While still in his 40's he became a volunteer firefighter.  He had thought you needed good eyesight but apparently the job is limited to putting the wet stuff on the hot stuff.  He enjoys being one of the grunts, doesn't want to take on more but feels it is helping people who need it.
He's a fan of NASCAR, Transpo and Monster Trucks, he goes to concerts and ball games and every now and then he goes back to the farm and drives a tractor.  In fact he enjoys that so much he collects them - has a room full of toy tractors all in plastic and a few real ones too.  All Internationals.  He has a model similar to the one his father first had and the actual one he learned to drive on and one with twin turbos.  He likes the fall, cutting firewood, watching the leaves, harvesting crops and running equipment.
If you have the need, he will bury your horse, burn stuff for you or make a splash pool for you dog - all skills in high demand.
And he likes other things involving engines - jet skis, ski doos, ATV's and etc.
Jerry Van Dyk's classification Bill Molesworth 2015-08-11 04:00:00Z 0

Andre Sanche's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 29, 2015
Amanda is excited that Andre accepted the invitation to Rotary and thinks he's a great fit for the Club and an addition to the community and she welcomed him to the podium.  He said he did have some cute pictures and he showed them to us - his parents Ron and Lynne in Elliott Lake who taught him to go for his dream, for what makes him happy.  He's the middle of three.  He did well in High School and went to Ottawa U with expectations following him so he took theatre to leave them behind but hated it - class full of drama queens - and left after one semester and moved into Commerce which he finished and which led to a job in an office which he also hated.  At 24 he went back to school - Algonquin College - to take food.  This has resulted in a career and a lifestyle.
During school he had different jobs - in a bistro, in restaurants, as a catering chef part time but the person he was working under and whose maternity leave he was going to fill left earlier than planned leaving him to move to full time while still studying for his finals.  He had two days off all summer and slept.  After 10 years he enjoys it all and looks back on the transition from a job he hated to one he loves.
His move to Midland has been perfect - he has found friends, he works with foods and he has a life and a lifestyle he loves.  Midland is close enough to the City to visit but not to be overwhelmed and it's on the way to Elliott Lake when it's time to go that way.  Here is now his home and he feels he belongs here.  This is partly why he joined Rotary - because of the commitment to community and the values of giving back.
He was doing well in Ottawa as the Culinary Manager for a combination store/restaurant but thought he should be working for himself so when he came here he started small and with his own vision.  But as he listened to his customers his vision has changed - he didn't want a restaurant but they said they needed a place to sit and then they needed a wider menu and then they needed a beer so now he has a license, does beer tastings, has hosted the first back alley BBQ and on and on.
The thrust now is to Building Community Through Food - using food to better people's lives.  50 cents of every pint goes to Charity.  He's teaching cooking at elementary schools and tries to teach eating well, especially if they are on a budget.  He gives the CLH Auction a dinner for 10 and last year that sold for $2,500.00.  
In answer to a question he says he doesn't focus on organic because it's more a label, instead he tries to go local and to know his suppliers.  Now farmers are coming to him and bringing stuff he wouldn't have thought of but his team can take it and create something.
The name in English would be Chives and Co. but it refers, in French, to the herb and also to a character in a play.
Andre Sanche's Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-07-29 04:00:00Z 0

DG Lise LaBois visits

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 22, 2015
Joyce said that Lise is from Sudbury and joined Rotary there in 1993.  She's been on a group study to France, served as President in 2003, been to India and El Salvador and to 6 Conventions.  She's a major donor and served three years as Assistant Governor.  She's been the District Chair of Youth Exchange.  Lise and Roland have 2 dogs and 3 daughters, and engineer, and account co-ordinator and an acting student in Melborne and 2 sons.  
Lise told us that this year's theme is "Be A Gift To The World" and talked about the effect we have on others, as in the story about the potential suicide who is shown how his life has been of value to others.  We all have something to give and our time is now.  
Midland is doing a good job of meeting this year's goals.  Most important is not just new members but retaining existing members and the best way to do that is through fellowship.  She said she had been invited to join but her first months as a Rotarian were not successful, she felt left out, but after serving as a greeter and getting to know people encouraged her to get more involved and made the difference.
Wherever she goes - Haiti, where she was met by a sea of faces at the airport and in India with its different culture - she was met by Rotarians, welcomed and made to feel part of the Rotary family.  She encouraged everyone to go to the Conference Sept. 10-13 for a great program and to mark off a Club achievement award requirement - 10% attendance.  Pass on the gift of Rotary.
DG Lise LaBois visits Bill Molesworth 2015-07-22 04:00:00Z 0

Culture Midland

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 07, 2015
Steve introduced Fred Hacker as a giant in the legal profession and a committed part of the community active in all aspects of the life of Midland.
Fred brought word from Culture Midland, an organization that works to organize the community around a cultural perspective.  The Town struck a Committee to write a Cultural Plan which included the recommendation that a permanent Committee be struck to implement all the other recommendations of the Plan.  That Committee has been in place for a while now and it is pursuing more public awareness.
Culture, Fred says, is not a dirty word, it's everything.  Midland's economy needs a new focus in this post industrial world and the cultural economy permeates every aspect of life in the community.  And it repays our investment.  For every dollar spent on cultural activities, nine dollars are returned.  Examples of successful cultural economies are Stratford, once a pig farming community and now a community with one of the highest standards of living and education in Canada, and Niagara on the Lake which Fred described as a few houses surrounding a plaque that now draws thousands of people who take advantage of restaurants, stores and activities.  Midland has the attributes to exploit and Culture Midland is there to provide advice and support.
Its mandate is to Celebrate and Leverage the Cultural Resources of our Community and the focus is to make it better, richer and more engaging for its residents.  It aims to do this by helping grow the cultural economy so that by 2020 culture is one of the economic drivers of the community.  The Committee wants to expand community awareness through talks like the one we were listening to, to connect the area's past with the present and take it into the future as a cultural hib.
The Committee has several strategic directions.  It notes that Barrie and Orillia both have cultural budgets of over a million dollars and Midland has one of $10,000.00 so one goal is to strengthen the level of municipal support by building partnerships and expanding culture's role in municipal activities.  It wants to celebrate and promote our heritage.  And it wants to define culture in a way that everybody can see it is a part of all that happens here.
Fred says that tourism is why people visit a community but Culture is why they stay.
In answer to a question about getting the Town to put up some funding, Fred suggests that Council will follow the lead of the ratepayers and if we, as members of the community, make culture a part of the discussion, Council wll follow.  The other three communities have not joined this effort as partners but Culture Midland recognizes that any activity that takes place across North Simcoe will be valuable.
Culture Midland Bill Molesworth 2015-07-07 04:00:00Z 0

Richard Moran's classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 15, 2015
Richard was born in 1983 in Timmins and started off in South Porcupine where his father was a doctor for the mine but his father's twin died young which caused a reconsideration and the family moved to Barrie to become more settled.  Richard has one brother who went to Western and then taught English in Italy which he enjoyed so much he went to Australia for his degree and he now teaches in England.  His mother is from England and is also a twin and is a speech pathologist at RVA.  Richard says his father is his hero and best friend who grew up in an orphanage because his parents couldn't look after two sets of twins and because his father died young.  The elder Moran is now a physician at the jail.
Richard went to high school in Barrie and enjoyed sports.  He went to Guelph to take sociology and hated that so he moved to Australia - no sociology there, maybe - to a place 1,500 kms north of Perth that has 5,000 people in the winter and 80,000 in the summer.  The beer store there is managed by his cousin so he got a job there but realized it wasn't for him so came back to school and got his degree.  Because his brother enjoyed teaching so much he took a job teaching English in Madrid and hated that.  He found the people inhospitable, teaching was not enjoyable, he actually got into a fight, had his pockets picked and his shoes stolen while he was in a bar.  Not all on the same day, I don't think.  So, back to Barrie.
A friend helped to fund law school - wrote a big cheque - and Richard was back to Australia where he had a great time and enjoyed travelling to the Phillipines and South East Asia.  He even came all the way back to take a course in France and drop in on his brother once or twice.  It was a big cheque.  He graduated in 2010, did his articling in Sudbury, took his bar exams and started at HGR where he has been having an amazing year, thanks to Ron.
Richard plays all the sports but likes hockey the best and has played at all levels, Jr. A, Jr. C, Sr. A,, semi pro in Spain and on.  He was the quarterback in high school and the won the Ontario Championship once.  He runs, plays racket sports and likes wakeboarding.  Plays golf too.  Ron should check his hourly billings, I don't know when he's got time to go to the office.
He's enjoyed Rotary and thanks Ron for inviting him.
Richard Moran's classification Bill Molesworth 2015-06-15 04:00:00Z 0

A Tripartite Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 13, 2015
Introducing a novel format we had three classifications at the one meeting.  Sheila told us she was born in Parry Sound in 1961.  Her father was a pilot and they moved a bit - to Midland, then Kingston and back to Elmvale.  She and her three siblings went throught school in Elmvale and learned that the more you volunteer, the more you connect.  She went to York for a BA in sociology and married Peter in 1984.  He works with the PUC and they have three children - Matthew, Trina and David.  She became a case historian at Oak Ridge, then went into family services at Kinark, became the co-director of the Early Years Centre, went back to Kinark to work with Young Adults and moved into retail, purchasing Cashmere Blue in 2008.  She's found this new direction challenging but she is learning and enjoying it.
Wanda's father was a miner so they lived in Thunder Bay for a while and learned to love the outdoors, cottaging, fishing and rafting.  At 16 she moved to Toronto to Business and Beauty schools and then, 18 years ago, she moved to Midland.  11 years ago she bought the salon. She shows horses, hosts students from Japan, owns dogs and enjoys working with her partner.
Elizabeth was born in 1971.  Her parents were both from Leaside and her father was an MD and then a pharmaceutical researcher who has remarried and now lives in North Carolina.  Her mom has nursed, been a stewardess and has run a personnel institute.  She spends time at the cottage and in the Honduras working with a charity.  She has a brother who teaches.  When they lived in the High Park area she was active in athletics and the Student Council.  She took psychology at Carleton and has worked in PR and Event Planning, waitressing, HR and in a bridal boutique.  Her husband, Michael, is Dutch and an investment banker.  Their son is now 6.  In May 2010 she turned a hobby of making jewelry into a job by going on line and now has 2 successful web based businesses.  They moved to the area in 2013 and though she does miss the shopping, she likes seeing the stars, listening to the loons, meeting the people and, thanks to Ralph's introduction, being a part of Rotary.
The three of them then hosted a fashion show with clothes by ?, hair by ? and jewelry supplied by ? and all worn by some of our other women - thank god for them - in Rotary.
And nice departure and, interestingly, the three of them did it quicker than whoever that guy was last time.
A Tripartite Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-05-13 04:00:00Z 0

John DeCarli's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 05, 2015
Arnie introduced his son John as, now, a third generation Rotarian and said it was an honour and a pleasure to be back in time for his Classification after only two years in the Club.
John admitted he had tried to avoid this because he didn't know what to say but it became an interesting exercise.  Starting with the facts - born in May 1978 in St Mikes so ever since fireworks have marked the occasion and will be again, I guess, this weekend.  At first they lived out on Midland Point but his parents found it too secluded and they moved to Fifth St..  He went to Monsignor Castix, played soccer and ran cross country but was average academically and was off to St. Andrew's College which he enjoyed - the sports, the boarding and the teaching and the meeting students from all over the world which gave him a better world view.
Summers were at Camp Hurontario which was character building - facilities were basic.  He went to Western for a BA, a three year degree that he managed to acquire in 4 because of a minor in having a good time.  He has always been interested in how things work and thought maybe he should move into engineering so he took a year of science and then two at engineering but by this time his parents thought he should be supporting his own education.  He started a painting company as a summer job and thanked Jamie Tripp for his support and advice and over a few years found he was doing something in the summers he enjoyed and was good at - 7 employees - while getting tired of the academic life.  So he came back to Midland and started his contracting company and again Jamie helped out and introduced him to Dwayne who mentored and offered the voice of experience.
Projects undertaken by the company have progressed over 12 years - his first quote came out at $22,000.00, and astronomical sum and now, with a staff of 6 project managers and a roster of subs they take on work valued in the millions.  He has 4 policies - the price you're quoted is the price you pay, promises are kept, admit it when you don't know something and then go find the answer and keep on it till it's done.  He works with great people, the suppliers at Timbr Mart, the customers, his marketing guru Alison.
He loves the community and his happy to be here where he can pursue his interests and hobbies.  He loves Georgian Bay and takes advantage with the boat he shares with his father - a great deal, they split the costs and he does all the work.  In the winter it's back on the Bay with the snowmobiles and is proud to say that he has taught Bill, Ralph, Dwayne and Phil and they are the better for it.  He does the work on his house, he tinkers - anything out of a box can be improved and he's invented a boat lift for his dinghy, and he enjoys Rotary and 'co-ordinating the hell out of bingo'.
HIs wife Natalie is caring, nurturing and an amazing stepmother, Johnny is 8 and enjoys sports and people and is a motivator and center of his dad's attention and his parents are 'embarrassingly' great, both supportive and present and friends and examples.  Both have remarried to wonderful people.
He is happy to have joined Rotary, it has given an added depth to his life and he is proud to be a member.
John DeCarli's Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-05-06 00:00:00Z 0

Louis Poulias Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 10, 2015
Maureen said that Louis had been a member but had to take a break for business but has rejoined about a year ago and we're glad to see him back.
Louis was born in June of 1960, the second of 4 and a very large boy, in Toronto.  He had an uncle in Greece who was a Senator and who did some genealogical research and discovered that 17 generations ago their ancestor was a member of the Assassins, a killer of such skill and grace that he was known as the 'Bird'.  His descendants are known as the 'Son of the Bird' or Poulias.  Of course, these people got their name from the copius amounts of Hashish they smoked to put them in the mood so maybe that's trickled down too.
His grandfather was a mason who built bridges all around Sparta and left his name on them all.  His father was a blacksmith who got into a disagreement with some Nazis, killed a couple and went on the run through the war.  Louis went to Victoria Park Secondary School and played several sports including football which he did well enough at to get a scholarship to West Virginia but his granddad died and his dad had cancer so he came home to help out.  He worked at his great uncle's restaurant, the Acropolis, washing dishes so his restaurant career started early.  He was studying architecture in the 80's but ended up opening the Pink Grill in 87. 
As the Greek community was relatively small everybody knew everybody so funerals were kind of reunions.  He met Mary at the service for a 92 year old friend of both their families and it turned out he'd met her before, at the age of 6, and now again 17 years later.  They are polar opposites - one of them owned a white Pontiac Firebird and the other a black Chevy Camaro.  They got married in 1984 and went to Puerto Vallarta, a place they return to often.
Mary worked in a bank and he was at the restaurant so their schedules didn't mesh, which is why he took up architecture, got a job building a mall and ended up taking up a space and opening the restaurant.
After 20 years without kids they adopted Rachel, which was a bit of a change of style and a shock to their routines. 
Louis likes football and business but is also a big Star Wars fan and he has converted his attic into a shrine - he has original posters from all the movies and statues, toys, models and on and on - he showed us a video.  He's never tried to figure out what it's worth because he doesn't want to know what he's spent after 30 years of collecting.
After a long life of hard work they bought a log cabin on Sawlog Bay two years ago.  It was built in 1825 and is a prescription for high blood pressure. 
It was architecture that brought them to Midland - he worked as an architect on the reconstruction of the Brooklea and ended up staying here and opening the Olympia in 1995.  Even with that he's held other jobs, working at Discovery Harbour and then opening the Event Centre and the restaurant has been up at the BW for four years.  This year they are putting an equipped trailer on the road that will bring catering to the event - weddings,etc.
Louis Poulias Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-03-11 00:00:00Z 0

Fine Time with Bruce and Karen

Actually Bruce was on his own.  Jim was happy because a day skiing with an old friend turned into a reunion as a cousin and a couple of others showed up too.  Phil and his credit cards had a great time in Kingston visiting his daughter.  Deb was happy just to see the sun and be out of boots.  Bob's grandson is coming from out west.  Roma is appointed to the College of Dental Hygienists.
Bruce found someone to read the Bulletin to him and realized that yours truly had preempted (that means stepped in front of, Bruce) him and criticized the President which is, apparently, a privilege reserved for Fines Masters alone.  Tony arranged for a replacement for his bingo shift but whoever it was failed to materialize.  Maureen, being fined by the appropriate individual, forgot to bring a plaque to present to Christine and Lister was absent so she had to pay.  Bob apparently declined to sit with Bruce, when invited, so was fined but Bob thought it was worth it.  Jamie Hunter got 3 out of 4 on the 4 way test.
Fine Time with Bruce and Karen 2015-03-11 00:00:00Z 0


Jose was doing a great job with our National Anthem I noticed.  Maybe we should all learn the one for Ecuador.  Bruce introduced Mike Proulx, Dave Gravelle, Dr. Ian Waggs and Tracy Sarmiento. 
Jamie Hunter arrived from wherever and tried to abscond with our hard earned dollars but right prevailed and there's still a chance.
Phil said the student the Club had decided to send to Denmark has declined the offer, which is too bad, but the opportunity has been offered to Fiona who is thrilled to go so that's good.
Aaron of the good news is sending us another bill soon which will continue the move to billing in advance.
Mike Proulx said he has many Rotary moments - the Dean Nicholls roast, the Hogg River and Sturgeon River clean up projects, helping Rosewood and working on the Trail, building the stage at Little Lake and enjoying the Music in the Park programs, HART III and, finally, the Saguenay Trip when the rains poured and the dams broke and 5 guys took two trucks and 14 hours to take furniture and appliances to Chicoutimi, the heart of separatism.  He said it was a real feel good experience, especially when one of the guys on the loading dock heard that these guys were from Ontario and said, in surprise, They look Normal!!
Announcements 2015-03-11 00:00:00Z 0

Ed's Musings

Respect parents - they passed without google.
Ed's Musings Ed Hartley 2015-03-11 00:00:00Z 0
Ed's Musings Ed Hartley 2015-03-07 00:00:00Z 0

Christine Baguley - Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 03, 2015
Alison says Christine is a fireball, she has a broad range of marketing experience and is doing well, she has a great family and she, Alison, is happy that Christine joined and is happy to introduce her.
Christine was born in Midland in 1969 as Carrie Christine but the first name never took.  She's the youngest of three and so, while her parents had relaxed a bit, she suffered some at the hands of her older siblings.  Her parents separated soon after and they lived with her grandmother for a time but her mother remarried, to a man who had three children but it all blended well and they were a new family.  She remembers road trips in a crowded car.
She went to Humber to take the Travel Agent course and enjoyed that and the job she got at Yonge and Eglington which location offered a fun but expensive life so when she got the chance she moved back to Midland and the Bay to work at Marlin Travel.  She got to travel and to help people plan their trips but eventually went in a new direction and joined NEBS in marketing.  From there she moved to the GBGH Foundation in a part time position which was good because she had more time for her kids.  It was a great experience, though, planning the galas, the sales, the campaigns, especially the one that culminated in the new Emergency Department.  So many do so much to make the Hospital great.  Recently she moved to take on the Foundation at RVH.  She feels that a facility that offers region wide care is important because it makes the lives of the patients easier - saving them time, travel and hotel costs.  36 million was raised towards the cost and, of course, more is needed.  She is now working on cardiac care facilities, a women's health centre and other projects.
Courtney and Mia are the most important part of her life.  An active teen and an energetic 9 year old provide an inspiration to her - keep her going and growing.  She feels blessed by family, friends, career opportunities and volunteer challenges.  Midland provides lasting friendships, sports opportunities and, most recently, the life changing opportunity to join Rotary and make new friends and meet new challenges.
Christine Baguley - Classification Bill Molesworth 2015-03-04 00:00:00Z 0

G. Dangerfield builds a school

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 17, 2015
A member of George's Club took part in a bike distribution in Cambodia and came back convinced by the translator that had accompanied them that there was a need for a school in the translator's home town, 4 hours south of Phnomh Peng.  So with the help of the rest of the Club and other Clubs in the District they arranged to have people and supplies collected on a backfilled bare piece of dirt cut out of the jungle.  When they arrived they had to start from scratch, with a foundation.  From 8 to 4 each day they dug post holes, built fencing to keep the cows out of the site, hauled brick, mixed mortar and generally contributed.  They laid some brick but once it got to a certain height some pros took over.
He said it didn't seem to be a built up area but once they started kids appeared out of the bush to watch.  They did take one break to visit Angkor Wat over 4 days and came back to see a roof on the structure.  It has a large classroom, a room for the teacher and his family, who cook outside, and another room for any visiting teacher.  A Club member in the solar business brought panels for the school and 10 houses that were chosen by a means test.  One house had a TV that ran off a car battery that had to go to town to get recharged. 
They did a bike distribution too and there was a big ceremony - a monk blessed the school and pronounced it open and the bikes were handed out in front of about 600 people.  All participants were anxious but very excited - bikes meant access to work or school.
George said it was a hugely rewarding experience and all who took part thought it spoke to the motto - Light up Rotary.
G. Dangerfield builds a school Bill Molesworth 2015-02-18 00:00:00Z 0

Fine Time with Karen and Bruce

Kathy Watson was happy to have been to a Raptors game.  Jim had 5 because Valentine's weekend had 3 birthdays at his house.  Kathy Kowalski had 20 for being a grandmother to Benjamin and because her husband was doing well after a visit to emergency - and because she saw all the signs crediting Rotary and Radio for Radiation that showed what the Club contributes and how much it's appreciated when it's needed.  Steve's eldest is home for a week which makes his wife happy and they are back from visiting Arnie in Florida and his youngest is accepted at Western.  Jose had 2 for a visit to see the Harlem Globetrotters.  Danielle and Jason had birthdays and Britt is celebrating an anniversary in Rotary.
Terri was fined for always scheduling Thirsty Thursdays on the nights the GBGH Foundation Board met so she and Ralph couldn't come.  Jim had to pay for a hug, John Lister for a lack of commitment but mostly because he wasn't there, Ralph cause all his friends were in Costa Rica and Tripp for wearing his hat inside.  Roma did an excellent job on the 4 way test.
Richard got an 8 of hearts suitable for framing but no jackpot.
Fine Time with Karen and Bruce 2015-02-18 00:00:00Z 0

Residential Schools

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 10, 2015
Corporal Carol Clark of the RCMP and Aaron Dickson of the OPP presented a history and overview of the causes and effects of the Residential Schools program.  Carol said that, until about 20 years ago there was an institutionalized and mandated program, established by the Baggott Commission, to 'civilize' the native populations -to turn them into Europeans - by placing then in schools away from their roots and forcing them to learn a new way.  The effect of taking children from the only places they've known and dropping them into these large structures, often placed on open spaces so runaways could easily be seen, without contact with their families, their language or their culture was incalculable. 
At the time common wisdom dictated such a course of action.  In the States it was kill or civilize and a misunderstanding of Darwin and the phrase 'survival of the fittest' led colonizers to think that natives would probably be gone in 75 years.  So, an Act to 'Manage' all aspects of native life was passed.  It defined who was or wasn't an 'Indian'.  A woman lost the claim to status if she married outside but a man became an aboriginal.  Considering how natives had helped the newcomers to survive and adapt to their new land, this response, once the colonizers were in the majority, was ill considered.  Reserves, control of cultural activities, an enforcement of Christianity, a pass system in place after the Riel Rebellion, a supervision of all travel and trade by a local agent, a replacing of the matriarchal system by an unfamiliar electoral one and on and on - complete disruption and dislocation.
Schools taught curricula defined by the government, land was owned by the government so no one could obtain a mortgage, their legal rights were not recognized by the courts and they couldn't vote federally till the 1960's.  The total space provided to all the reserves was less than the size of Vancouver Island, less than the total dedicated to National Parks.
The schools - well - porridge twice a day while the children grew produce that was sold; Fort Francis had an electric chair for punishment; as many as 69% of students died and were buried in unmarked cemeteries; tuberculosis was rampant in the crowded and unhealthy spaces and patients were sent to sanatoria and put in tents; physical comfort was denied, physical abuse was common; parents who refused to release their children were arrested; teachers were unqualified, sometimes even illiterate themselves; mass tonsillectomies and sterilizations were carried out without permission or even explanation; and they were driven to activity all day.  They even had special, tiny, handcuffs.
Duncan Scott used the phrase "a final solution" and despite the evidence of abuse and even with public awareness, no changes were made.  The children who survived were gone for over a decade and returned home not knowing their families, their communities, their culture or their language and turned, in confusion and despair, to drink.  When they had children of their own, they had no idea how do deal with them - they had no parenting skills and no connection so the impact continues down the generations.
ID numbers replaced names, hair that had a symbolism for men was shorn, insufficient clothing was provided, solitary confinement was common.  The Truth and Reconciliation Commission says 3,000 died but Carol thinks it was more like 50,000.  There is no real number.  Those that died at the schools were buried in mass graves without records kept or families notified and those that died later, at home, would not have been recognized as victims.  It required Court orders to get information released.
Once released they had no grounding and the rates of native incarceration climbed in step with the release rates from the schools.  PTSD is common, suicide rates are higher than the national average, especially among the young teenagers.  Many were adopted out to white families in North America and even in Europe and they are lost completely.
Apologies have been forthcoming - the Churches and in 2008 the federal government apologized which was an emotional and validating experience for survivors.  But is that enough?  Each individual needs healing, role models and a rebirth of pride in traditions and culture.  Phil Fontaine has opened some discussions and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission is validating the history of it all but it is a black hole in our history.  Payments have been made but money alone will not cure.  Carol says we can't ignore all this but neither can we be prisoners of the past.  Recognition of the problem, a restoration of respect and responsibility and an awareness on all our parts of the facts is required.
Residential Schools Bill Molesworth 2015-02-11 00:00:00Z 0
Fire Hall Quote Ed Hartley 2015-01-21 00:00:00Z 0

Update from Garfield

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 20, 2015
John Lister said he was introducing someone who needed no introduction.  Garfield is in his 5th term and serves as Education Critic.
Garfield said thanks for the opportunity and for the lunch though he had to pass on dessert - he'd counted once and over one weekend had been offered dessert 20 times and decided he had to go cold turkey.  Either that or carry his own fork, as one of his colleagues does.
He said that he was back in office but that the recent election had been disastrous, the party had blundered and lost 9 seats.  His wife Jane was returned as a Councillor and her advertising only mentioned that she was married with two children.  No reflected glory there and she received 85% of the vote.
Jim Wilson is doing a good job as interim leader and Garfield, after spending the last term doing a review of the trades and apprenticeship, asked for more and is now critic for Education.  The conservatives have stood for education with Bill Davis and the community colleges, etc.  Now he's looking at everything from day care to university and enjoying it.  He's contacting stakeholders, meeting amazing young people on the Federation of University Students, consulting with the unions and still fighting the College of Trades.  He's learning all the time.
He feels the institutions can be their own worst enemies because they don't promote the economic returns they provide, through capital expenditure, salaries and local purchasing, enhanced work forces and on and on.  Even Orillia's 1,500 students at Lakehead are making a difference.
The party is studying the sex ed curriculum being proposed by the Liberals.  Garfield feels it's a bit of a trap - that if the party comes out too hard against it they'll be branded as dated and out of touch and, perhaps, prejudiced.  But there are a lot of people who feel strongly and there will be debate.  When he suggested a low profile on the issue he had his phone lines and email jammed by religious conservatives but he thinks it's 2015, not 1955 and that should be recognized.  He looks forward to developing policies to take into the next election that will have the stakeholders on side.
Update from Garfield Bill Molesworth 2015-01-21 00:00:00Z 0

GBGH Update

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 22, 2014
Ralph said he'd been asked at 11:30 to introduce Karen and so he had dropped everything to prepare.  His eloquence has to be quoted exactly.  I am pleased to introduce Karen McGraw.
Karen was suitably grateful for the introduction and said she had just arrived from a meeting with the 4 mayors and the Asst. Dep. Minister of Health to discuss the hospital's financial situation.  It is no secret they are struggling.  They had faced a shortfall before and were reprieved by a one time contribution from the LHIN and this year they were expecting a lift in funding based on their good performance but ended up facing a drop of $300,000.00 which was added to a pay equity driven increase in salaries that left them with a shortfall of 1.2 million.  The formula by which hospital funding is established is very complicated and they are seeking a review.
In the meantime, they had already planned to divest the Penetang site and had moved 36 of 47 beds to a renovated section of the hospital and would be moving the rest over the next 2 years, along with some admin functions and the dialysis unit. But this unexpected new shortfall leaves the Board forced to borrow, which will bring their debt to 12 million. 
They are advocating for extra funding and for a thawing of their base budget which has been frozen for 4 years and for a recalculation of the formula.  The 4 Mayors are supporting their efforts, the community has been making itself known and all the staff are committed to continue to provide quality care.  The facility is 45% bilingual, they have hired an Aboriginal patient navigator and their performance numbers are excellent.  45,000 through emergency is equal to the Mt. Sinai numbers.  They have a new CFO who is versed in the formula and is pursuing further fine tuning and comparisons with other hospitals.  There are no quick solutions.  Layoffs require 6 months notice and cost a lot so savings would be years coming.
Though the Ministry's position on smaller hospitals is not really clear, the rep. at the meeting signed a commitment to sustain the hospital. 
Ralph pointed out that the pay equity problem is one that has been 18 years in the making and is now costing, that other hospitals seem to get paid more for some services than GBGH does and that the formula is opaque so though 12 million deficit seems like bad planning, its a series of events, historical and current that contributed and the Board does not intend to cut services.
Karen said Garfield is very supportive and that their voice is being heard at Queen's Park and they will continue to seek avenues for persuasion.
GBGH Update Bill Molesworth 2014-12-23 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 12, 2014
Christina studied environmental sciences and was working in the north when she was diagnosed with an auto immune disorder and she had to change direction.  Her experience dealing with a disability introduced her to questions of access and she joined Independent Living Simcoe.
She explained the her organization works in partnership with United Way to support adults who want to stay at home and they currently provide attendant care services to 140 or so people.  Independent Living also provides training, access audits, a resource centre and, with help from Rotary and others, it provides access to beds and wheelchairs, etc for those of limited means.  It is building, now, an exchange/resale service for equipment as well.
Access is good for the community and the economy.  It is cheap, it is the law and it is the right thing to do.  1 in every 7 suffers from limitations and of those that do suffer, 82% are afflicted with more than one condition.  It is the largest minority group in Ontario.
Seniors also have difficulty with access and other age related problems and as the boomers get older the issue will become more sensitive.  There will be more age friendly facilities and success will spill over to their friends and families.
8 out of 10 with disabilities use an assistive device which one speaker compared to a shopping cart in a store, very helpful in the wide aisles and on the smooth floor but take it into the parking lot, put it in your car, take it into your house - not so easy then.  Access has a spin off that makes life easier for people with strollers or for deliveries.
Accessibility generates new spending, both retail and tourist, as much as $600.00 per person added to the GDP in Ontario.  It can be achieved through easy steps.  First, have a welcoming staff, install clear signage, improve lighting.  Major changes for ramps or elevators do need to be budgeted and there are questions if you rent your space but the legislation says the Province will be accessible by 2025.  Municipalities are in compliance already but about 70% of businesses are not.  New building and renovations will be covered by the Building Code that takes effect next year.
Seek out comments, listen to complaints, ask how you can help.
Bob Campbell thanked Christina and said that until you've experienced it, you can't know what difficulties a person with disabilities faces or how much even a little thing can make a difference.
Accessibility Bill Molesworth 2014-12-13 00:00:00Z 0

Fall Fireside 2014

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 04, 2014

Don't forget Hamper Night is November 26 and Mora wants you to know that Richard Moran has been proposed for membership.

There were four community groups represented.

Dave Gravelle spoke about the Southern Georgian Bay Family Physician Recruitment program which focuses on family doctors - specialists are another matter.  Midland Rotary has just finished its third, of three, contributions of $10,000.00 to this program and they are asking for a new three year commitment.

Dave spoke about their successes and their new new tactics - instead of going to trade shows and etc. they are concentrating on encouraging students to do placements here and then show them the many attractions of the area.  Efforts like the Annual Rural Medicine Week, partnership with the North Ontario School of Medicine and the relationship with U of T have all helped.  Two new doctors will be moving here in January.  But what they are finding is that replacing doctors is more than a one for one effort now - doctors are looking for a better work/life balance these days and it is now almost a three for one replacement equation which makes Dave's job much harder.

Physician Recruitment has an active publicity program on all platforms and Rotary will be recognized as a major supporter as it has in the past.  The program costs about $100,000.00 a year and there are other major supporters - Glen Howard's golf tournament recently donated $30,000.00 and they are getting money from Tiny and Springwater as well.

Bob Bruer and Bob Sykes spoke for Out of the Cold.  Since March of 2012 the program has been run year round and since then they have welcomed over 400 new guests, 33% of whom were women.  149 people spent the night and 28,000 meals were served.  A lot of people come for socialization and food - they may have a place to sleep but that can be isolating.  500 volunteers make this all happen.

They've been doing their regular public relations and fund raising with the Mayors coming for dinner and a walkathon in Little Lake, among other efforts.  The County is changing the way it funds these services and there will be money from them.  They are embarking on a capital campaign, there is a new Board, they have rewritten the by laws and, though there are challenges with the proposed location they are still working on it.  There will be room for 18 in a space that will be divided for privacy and security for women or youth.  It will offer a first response unit, an opportunity for socialization and lounges 24/7.  Their AGM will be Nov. 18.

Bev Prost and Mike Hamelin are working on creating a haven for homeless youth called The Next Door.  They have been incorporated since 2012 and propose to give kids between 16 and 24 who lack social supports a safe place.  Youth face dangers adults don't and often deal with drug and alcohol problems and low self esteem leading to problems at school, dropping out, hanging out with the wrong crowd and losing hope.  This home promises to give them a secure and calm environment, to teach them life skills, to encourage them to stay in school.  They have a house on Colborne St. with 3 bedrooms and two porches where they will help out while going to school or working.  Bev and Mike have a list of partners from the community that have already committed to help and they are asking for $25,000.00 from Rotary because the need is there and the opportunity is now.


Anna introduced Christine Forsyth who is filling in at the GB Cancer Centre.  They are grateful for the iPads provided by Rotary last year.  They have allowed patients to keep in touch while they are in Toronto for treatments.  2 in 5 people will get cancer and there are 255 new cases in our area each year with 1,500 living with it now.  Cancer affects the patient's family and friends and the centre has a vision of regional support which has been provided since March 2011.  There is group support, exercise classes, activities, wigs and prosthesis, a soup for the soul program and education, all free and supplied without government support.  The Penetang Hospital is slated to close soon and the Centre will have to move so they don't have a specific ask at the moment but promise that when they are clearer on their plans they will be back.

Jamie and Phil talked about student exchange, encouraging all members to include Jose in activities and to consider playing host to this pleasant and willing young man.  Phil said they had had difficulty deciding on who to send outbound this year - it was a tie - but they did pick one and have discussed the matter with others in the District.  Hearst is prepared to host a student and send our second choice as their representative if our Club pays the expenses.

We had brief reports for those Chairs who were present - Mora said our number stands at 54 but there are 3 prospective members who are considering.  There will be a College of Knowledge in January.  Anyone who sponsors a new member through this year will be eligible for a prize.  Amanda said the PR committee could use a couple of new members as they try to educate the community and help information flow back to the Club.  Bill Richardson said the Int'l Committee will be sending $10,000.00 to Polio again this year, that they will be helping a nurse from Waypoint going to Nicaragua with $23,000.00 of dental equipment, that Mister Lister is suggesting the Club consider sending $5,000.00 to a school in Lesotho that he has taught at and spoken about before and there will be a vote on that soon.

There were suggestions from members about funding opportunities.  Jan. 14 Jim McMillan will be presenting speakers on the Huronia Land Conservancy, Bruce asked if we'd ever been approached about helping provide breakfasts in the schools.  There was some discussion on the Guest House and the asks in general.  The meeting adjourned.

Fall Fireside 2014 Bill Molesworth 2014-11-05 00:00:00Z 0

Auction 2015

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 28, 2014

Jason said the Auction Committee's been working hard and now it's time for everyone to join in.  The Auction has been a major part of the Club's activities for 25 years, in different formats but it's core has always been that we approach businesses for donations which we auction off while the donors get to contribute to a good cause and raise their company's profile.

Peak earnings have been about 40,000 but last time it was down to maybe 20 so the Committee is looking to get that higher this year.  They plan to do more marketing and they need lots of donated items.  Members used to have longer to get their contracts done but it seems we always waited till the last minute anyway so this year we have a month.  Go early to give yourself time to get to the decision maker and to go back a couple of times if the donor is slow to commit.  If a donor you've been dealing with for years is not on your list you can trade.  Check with Jason.  If a potential contract is listed twice it may be because there are two locations or because they gave two items last time so view the previous donation for details.  It doesn't hurt to view or print it anyway, so you can be accurate when talking to a donor.

While we waited for technology to catch up to us, Rob reminded the Club that these are unencumbered funds - not bound by the rules of Raffle licensing - and the Club can spend it on any cause which is useful when we're trying to meet our commitment to international projects.

Jason said that gift certificates usually yield the best return but physical items, especially big ticket items, lend themselves to promotion.  The Committee will be using social media as well as traditional media.

Everything's on line now so fill out the donor status page and give a clear and full description of the donation and a picture if possible.  Then print it to confirm details.  There is a suggested text to use when talking to potential donors.  Donations should have a value of at least $50.00 to justify the value of the advertising that will be produced.

Over the last couple of years the trauma centre has been the recipient of most of the funds raised but the Board makes the final decision.  If anyone has suggestions they can bring them up at the Fireside.

Auction 2015 Bill Molesworth 2014-10-29 00:00:00Z 0

World Polio Day

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 21, 2014

Jamie Hunter reminded us that World Polio Day is the 24th and he was pleased to report that over the years the Midland Club has donated about $150,000.00 to the cause.  We all know that we are 'this close' but there are circumstances that make bringing this disease to its end difficult.  Smallpox has been eliminated and there are other diseases that need attention but, as Britt reported, there have been setbacks.  Volunteers have been attacked and killed in Pakistan - 60 in the last two years - and Nigeria and Doctors Without Borders have had to leave Somalia due to risks to workers' safety.

Between 5 and 10% of those infected die and there are three countries that are still developing cases.  The cost of a dose of vaccine is only sixty cents but the cost of getting the volunteers safely to their destinations drives the total up.  10 billion has been spent since 1988.  Rotary started with 6 million kids in 1979 in the Phillipines and then pledged 120 million over three years but by the time the three years was up they had raised 247 million.  All countries except Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria have been declared free, which means twelve months without a case but it can spread back across, especially when refugees are moving.

Religious conflict and misunderstanding are the two major reasons why we're not done.  The CIA hunt for Bin Laden, which included a fake vaccination team, has contributed to the misunderstanding and distrust.  The numbers are still dropping and 95% of Pakistan was reached this year.  Bill Gates says Rotary is the heart and soul of the fight and has committed to doubling donations.  Midland has been the biggest contributor in our District for years.


World Polio Day Bill Molesworth 2014-10-22 00:00:00Z 0

Exhange Students coming and going.

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 14, 2014

Jose is from Ecuador and from Rotary District 4400.  His mom is an oncologist and his father teaches criminal law at the University.  He has two brothers, 17 and 9 and his main interest seems to be sports.  He plays them all but his real enthusiasm is soccer with a minor in tennis.  He thinks he'd like to follow his father into law but is trying to figure out how to make a living at soccer.

Ecuador is a small country with about 16 million people and is divided into distinct geographical regions - the Coast, the Hills and the Woods.  It celebrates its biodiversity - the most in the world - and its gastronomy.  The whole country shares Jose's enthusiasm for soccer.  It is divided into 25 Provinces and Portoviejo, his home town, is the local capital with about 300,000 people which makes it small enough to get around in and to get out of - there's a great beach only 15 minutes away.

Jose had pictures of his family, his town and country and some attractions of the area which gave us an idea of how he lives.  He finished up by presenting a banner from his home Club to Maureen.\

Colin Best has recently come back from Belgium with his coat of many attachments - must have bee fun getting through security.  He and the other outbounds first went to Ottawa for an orientation session which he found useful, plus he made a lot of friends.  Then it was off to Belgium which he found a challenge because he was still learning about the country and trying to master French.  His new home, Arlon, was in the south east of the Country which is about twice the size of Georgian Bay and is home to about 11 million people.

His host Club had 4 inbound students at once and Colin commented on the different formats of the meetings - no fines and lots of beer. They do a lot of celebrating there and it involves a lot of street parties.  They celebrate the four major food groups - fries, waffles, chocolate and fries.  Colin had lots of pictures of his host families, their homes, his unmade beds and the countries he visited.

He went everywhere.  Between the moderate climate and the rapid transit it was easy to visit other countries.  The Netherlands, Paris, the Alps, Portugal.  He felt a little uncomfortable because his predecessor, from the States, had arrived bringing straight A's and fluency but Colin found the transition to this new place to be smooth and enjoyable.  He graduated while he was there and the grad class visit was to Venice and Rotary took him on trips to Spain and Prague.  It was all great but kind of tiring.

When he came back they had a meeting in Sudbury and then a trip to the Conference.  The whole experience has bee incredible and wonderful and he is grateful for the opportunity.  He says it's a wonderful and important program and he hopes the Club carries on with it.  He grew and matured and learned a lot and will certainly explore becoming a Rotarian.

Exhange Students coming and going. Bill Molesworth 2014-10-15 00:00:00Z 0

Doctors to Nunavut

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 14, 2014

Dave Gravelle said he'd now had his Rotary moment - he'd been fined.  Recently he had requests for placements from the Family Medicine Rural Education program and two doctors in Midland agreed to accept the candidates but both doctors had already agreed to go to Nunavut for part of the time the students would be here.  After some scrambling and with the support of Rotary, it was agreed that Ethan and Tom would go too.

So Doctors Siedlecki and McGuire and students Tom Lu and Ethan Tumarkin left on a 3,000 km flight to a much colder place.  Tom likened it to a scene shot by a Mars Lander.  Nunavut is huge, over 2 million sq. km and home to only 36,000 people.  The airport was built in WW II but the runway was added on to so it could act as a secondary for the space shuttle.

Qikitani General Hospital serves the town of Iqualuit and surrounding areas.  There are no family doctors - people see nurses in clinics and then are medvac'd if it's serious.  The hospital has 35 beds and clinics during the day and 24/7 emergency service.

Tom and Ethan led us on a photographic tour of the hospital and the town and the local grocery with a focus on prices - $27.00 for a pound of bacon.  The trip was made possible by help from Rotary and the co-operation of the participating doctors and hospitals and both felt that it had been a great learning experience, especially for two people from large urban environments, that gave them a great appreciation of the different problems and concerns of different parts of the country.

Doctors to Nunavut Bill Molesworth 2014-10-15 00:00:00Z 0

The Million Dollar Dinner

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 07, 2014

Sue Cook who has served Rotary in a large number of capacities is currently working with Joyce on organizing a District 7010 Million Dollar Dinner.  They showed a video that talked about the Foundation and how it is there for emergencies like floods or earthquakes and for health issues like Polio or for education or clean water or maternal health.  It is better to light a single candle and if each Rotarian lights one, we can light up the world. A combinations of waves and wind blew thousands of starfish up on a beach and a woman walking her dog came across this scene of dying creatures.  She found one she could put back and was asked 'why bother, what difference does that make?' and she replied it made a big difference to that one.

The dinner is a $10,000.00 a plate event.  It can be paid for at once or over a few years or through donations of stock or by making a bequest in a will.  Calgary Rotarians held one and raised 2.3 million, Edmonton 4.5 and last week in Halifax they raised 1.6.  Gifts of $25,000.00 will become individual endowments named by the donors and pins that mark each level of giving.

The Foundation's program fund has a budget this year of $123 million, Polio will spend 5.5 billion over 5 years, the World Fund for Peace Scholarship Funds need a billion over several years and that still leaves the six areas of focus.  All of these things are making a difference.  Look to the Dinner - May 7 2015.

The Million Dollar Dinner Bill Molesworth 2014-10-08 00:00:00Z 0

Recovery High Schools

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 30, 2014

Dave introduced Eileen Shewin and Patrick Best who are Board members for the new Recovery High School that's being established outside Wyebridge in the old school on Hwy. 93.

Eileen said this will be the first school of its kind in Canada.  It is the result of inter Ministerial collaboration at both levels of government and builds on a model that is almost 30 years old in the States and has proven very successful.

Substance Abuse Disorder is a clinically defined mental health issue that occurs more often than we would like to think.  It is defined in the Mental Disorders of Psychiatry manual and affects 13% of the High School population in Ontario.  In the States the highest incidence is in Rhode Island at 13% so it is serious here.  Canada is number 2 in the world for prescription drug abuse.  175,000 kids in Ontario and 4,500 in Simcoe County suffer.

People call victims addicts and parents often enable the disorder by making excuses, saying the kid is going through a phase on is only smoking pot but this is a disease and it needs to be treated.  Unfortunately less than 1 in 10 sufferers get help and, of them, less than 1 in 10 get the long term support they need to stay sober.  Even after intensive treatment, only 10% show up at outpatient clinics.  The 28 day program may work but on release kids under 18 go back to their High School where peer pressure and availability encourage relapse.  The schools are not funded, mandated or trained to deal with these kids.

Eileen says the idea behind the new school is to change the culture from 'everybody is doing it' to 'nobody is doing it' and to develop a new peer pressure and mutual supports that hold kids accountable for their behaviour.  They will start with 40 and there will be teacher/student ratio of one to five.  It is a diploma granting institution that will continue to work with students that are clean as they move into society and look for work.  There is counseling available in house, group and individual, and there are student and teacher mentors.

Graduation rates in the US are over 92% and students report significant reductions in mental stress, depression, ADHD behaviours within the first year of attendance.  There are college level recovery schools in the States but Canada is far behind on this.

The program involves the community.  These kids are labelled and they need to redefine themselves and 'embrace their future'.  Teens have a relapse rate of between 10 - 15% but it is much higher in adults so reaching them while they're young is more effective.  Recovery, however, is a life long journey so the school tries to give them the tools to maintain throughout.  The kids sign off on their rights and submit to drug testing, locker inspections and a loss of privacy - they want to ensure sobriety there - but if there is a relapse they don't expel, they go back to treatment with them and start again.

These dependencies impose terrible social costs on society, it does not discriminate among its victims and social complacency is the greatest enabler.  325,00 hospital days a year to deal with drug related issues, millions of dollars in lost revenues and over 5 billion in enforcement.  The school is looking for local projects for the kids to work on in groups.

Recovery High Schools Bill Molesworth 2014-10-01 00:00:00Z 0

Intro to The Next Door

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 16, 2014

John Lister introduced Gus and Beth, both passionate about the cause of young adult homelessness.  We may not be aware of it as a problem but these two are familiar with it and are working to alleviate it.  Beth is a legal assistant with 4 daughters and Gus played professional hockey in France and Finland before becoming a Probation Officer with neurolinguistic training in suicide prevention.

Gus said he and Beth and the others they are working with have a vision of a transitional home for street kids that will be more than a shelter.  It will be a long term home for young people so they can gain a sense of belonging and work towards solutions to their problems and traumas.  Driving his daughter to school recently he told her she was a great kid which she agreed with but later he's talking to a street kid and asks him what his one wish would be if he had one and it was that 'he had never been born'.  These kids have no sense of being special and that's what's driving him on this project - the need to give these kids a sense of their identity, of their specialness.

They've been rejected all their lives so the vision is to build a community of kids who feel proud about themselves.  We, as a community, have a responsibility and and obligation and he says we cannot fail.  They can be reached.  He spoke with one young girl who was not on his client list and after a conversation of 45 minutes she wrote him a note that thanked him for being there to work on her problems.  He never saw her again, though.  She had left home at 14 to escape sexual abuse, had worked as a prostitute, was arrested but released into the care of an adult but she was a suicide at 18.  She was abused, scared and felt that being on the street was safer than being at home.

Gus said that his group is working on a detailed presentation which they will be presenting later, that they have an application in to Simcoe County for funding but that they need partners to work with them on this to prevent more of this kind of tragedy.

In response to a question he said that numbers were very difficult to come by because these youth are so traumatized and distrustful that they are very hard to contact.  They have had no positive experiences in terms of relationships and so have no sense of how to build one.  Most of them have drug and mental health issues and drugs become more dangerous every day - recently they found pot that had been handled with equipment used to cut oxy contin which made it extremely dangerous.

Beth distributed a letter from the principal at MSS confirming the need for such a facility.  She says the students come to school hungry, without proper clothing, with no sleep and they are at such a loss that they disengage altogether.

Intro to The Next Door Bill Molesworth 2014-09-17 00:00:00Z 0

An Update From Dave Gravelle

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 02, 2014

Dave said that since the start of physician recruitment there had been a tremendous relationship with the Midland Rotary Club - one of the founding funders and a supporter ever since.  The Rotary Club of Midland gets tops billing on all documentation.  Recruitment in Midland is forging other partnerships - notably with the U of T's Rural Medicine Week which sees students sent to smaller communities to engage them and encourage them to become our future doctors.  Shauna Comstock came under that program and then asked if she could come again for an internship.  She had a great visit and now is working on a 6 month residency which started on July 1.

The Northern School of Medicine has a comprehensive Community Clerkship program which sees two 3rd year students become members of the community during training.  This program puts and emphasis on a Social Community mandate that works to affect the community being served.  The students will work on a long term project which has yet to be determined.  Between these programs the span of a doctors education is covered and it all works to provide a longer term solution to physician shortages, instead of constantly scrambling to fill positions.

David announced that Shauna and her husband Colin have agreed to stay after their residencies.  They will settle here with their son.  As well Dr. Kevin Bryon is joining Chigamik and Dr. Emily Queenan will be moving here from Rochester in early summer next year.  The Glen Howard golf classic raised $30,000.00 for recruitment and Dave offered thanks to all who participated and sponsored the event.

An Update From Dave Gravelle Bill Molesworth 2014-09-03 00:00:00Z 0

DG Rep Bryne Styles

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 19, 2014

Joyce said Bryne is a past DG and a Director for Zone 24.  He's a benefactor and the recipient of many awards including benefactor and the Service Above Self award.  He and his wife are pharmacists and have 2 children and 5 grandchildren.

Bryne said that when he'd been asked to visit a few clubs he had picked Midland and was glad to be back, renewing connections and making new ones.  He said he knew he'd been here recently but that was to talk about the Foundation.  Now, however, Gary Traill has had to step down as DG because of health problems, a very difficult thing for him to do, and the 3 immediate past DGs are sharing the duties, though one person's name has to be on the documentation and that'll be be Brian Menton's.  14 of the past DGs are helping with the Club visits..

Bryne never intended to be this involved when he joined, thinking that some lunches and fellowship would be nice addition to his week but joining is just the first step in a journey and Rotary sneaks up on you and you get more involved and realise you are part of something more than just a service club.  Rotary is one of the most powerful organizations in the world.

A past Rotary International President once told him that the best way to get a message across was through a story and Bryne says we all have our stories like Peter's, a man he met at a Rotary event in NY who told him he had left home at 15 because of abuse and lived in a trailer with other men and who knows what in terms of behaviours and substances.  But he took a job with a caterer and, as part of his work, helped with two weekly Club lunches where he met people who treated him with respect.  He made his choices and is now a member of his own club.  Though Bryne met him in NY, it turns out the Clubs he worked with were two of the Barrie clubs, including Bryne's.  We don't know what effect we have sometimes.

Bryne encouraged us to go to the Conference - the best value for the dollar ever.  You get fed, good speakers, excellent fellowship and entertainment over a whole weekend and you always learn something.  Next year it'll be in Sudbury.

This year's RI Pres. is urging us to :"Light up Rotary" by holding a day that highlights Rotary to the community and show what we do both locally and internationally.  They are also emphasizing membership  and encouraging retention by working to meet the members' needs with interesting meetings and activities.  The question we should ask is, would we join now?

Bryne also promotes the Foundation, a powerful and diverse organization in the world that works at the highest level.  International is hoping members each donate $195.00 this year.  He points out the Midland is always above the average with its donations.  Districts are hosting a million dollar dinner which can be attended with a commitment of $10,000.00 or more to be spread over several years.  7010 will be holding one in the spring and we'll be hearing about it.

We look at the world and all the serious problems and wonder what one person can do but as a group we make a major difference.  Confucious, the world's first Rotarian and our current President's favourite philosopher said it was better to light a single candle than to sit and curse the darkness but if every member lit a candle we would Light up the World.  We all want the same things, food, shelter, clean water, education and we can help others towards those things.  Imagine the world without Rotary and share our experience with others.

Polio is the organization's #1 priority and membership the # 1 concern.  Think about why you joined and why you have stayed and make notes and share them with others.

DG Rep Bryne Styles Bill Molesworth 2014-08-20 00:00:00Z 0

Dave Franklin and Iceland

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 05, 2014

Dave's from Montreal, a lawyer with Franklin and Franklin which deals with business and commercial law and debt recovery.  He has chaired several law conferences, lectures all over the place, writes articles and books and is a member of the Quebec, Canadian, and International Bar Associations.  He taught at the Molson school of business at Concordia, is a Rotarian and Charter President of the Old Montreal Club and, since 2001 he's been the Honourary Consul of Iceland in Montreal.

David brought greetings and a banner from District 7040 which includes parts of NY, ON, and PQ and reaches to Iqualuit.  His Club is centred in Montreal's Chinatown.  On a trip to Holland years ago he met people from Iceland and the relationship grew.  He's been there 24 times.

Iceland and Newfoundland have a lot in common - rocky, surrounded by the North Atlantic, dependent on fisheries and both visited and settled by Norse voyagers.  He's the Honourary Consul in Montreal where there might be 20 people actually from the country but in Manitoba there are maybe 250,000 descended from Icelanders. though most of them have never been there.  There are only 320,000 back home.  There are strong links between the two countries, though, including a free trade agreement.

Iceland is volcanic - remember the one that erupted and practically stopped transatlantic flights for a week.  The language is one of the more difficult in the world, basically old Norse going back 1,500 years and they make a real effort to keep invasive words, especially English ones, out.  They make up words for things the Norse never thought of - instead of 'TV' the word for that really means sheep vellum because they used to use that to draw stories.  The word for telephone actually means 'thread'.  The country's a little bigger than New Brunswick and the capital, Reykjavik, has about half the population.  There is a ring road around the island that's 1,800 kms long.

The flag is blue, for water - both ocean and glacial (glacial water is a huge export), white for the ice of glaciers which take up about 11% of the land mass but which are retreating at the moment, and red for the lava.  The cross, which is used on all Scandinavian flags is the one of Lutheranism.  The country uses the heat of the volcanoes in their houses and so there is little dependence on fossil fuels.  Also, though they are close to the Arctic Circle, the climate is moderated by the Gulf Stream and the mean temperature hovers around zero.  Summer highs reach 20.  No pollution means very clear air.

Dave showed us some slides of beautiful but spare countryside - few trees but lots of waterfalls.  In answer to a question he said that the banks did collapse - the government did not subsidize them - but the infrastructure was solid, tourism stayed strong (over 800,000 a year) and fishing and aluminum smelting (because of cheap power)  so the economy is rebounding well and unemployment is at about 4%.

Dave Franklin and Iceland Bill Molesworth 2014-08-06 00:00:00Z 0

Debra's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 29, 2014

Mora was thrilled to introduce Debra, a friend of 27 years.  Whenever Mora wonders who would make a good Rotarian, she always thinks of Debra and, up till now, whenever Mora asks her Debra has always put her off but now she's here.  Three things - Debra's a fantastic swimmer, a fantastic sewer and the best 'bite the bag' player ever.

Debra said she was born in Melbourne where her father worked as an exec with Mattel.  When she was 14 her father was transferred to Toronto and while she was going to Richmond Collegiate she met a boy who took her to visit his family's cottage on Georgian Bay.  Latter her father moved to LA but she stayed with the boy and the Bay.  She took a B. Comm in London and got a job there with Holiday Inn but Brian, the GB boy, was working in Midland at the radio station so she moved to the Highland and met Mora.  Then Brian moved to London and they spent a couple of years there. 

Her father, meanwhile, had decided he wanted to raise horses and he needed help with his new operation in Kentucky.  Thus began a three year immigration odyssey - she couldn't go to the US as an Australian and come back to Canada so she became a Canadian citizen and in 1999 they took over the Elk Hill farm - Debra doing the financials and admin and Brian doing the operations.  This was a huge learning curve for them both and is the source of incredible memories - new foals, the Kentucky Derby, driving 3 hours so their son could play hockey on the only team in the area.  But her father sold out and they moved to Cambridge where she worked in a medical facility and Brian took a job with a Larch station in Kitchener.  A job at the station in Midland opened up and after 18 years they are back by the Bay.

Debra joined the Physician's Support office to generate and organize the data they use to justify the dollars spent.  It's valuable work for a valuable institution and she enjoys it.

The family is close knit because of their moves.  Her daughter is 24 and engaged and taking HR at U of T.  Her son is 22 and is marine navigation and is wheelsman on a laker as we speak, gaining experience.  Brian is on the morning team at a local station and they've no been together for 26 years.  They love being back and getting out on the boat.  She thanked the Club for the invitation and the welcome to the Rotary Family.

Debra's Classification Bill Molesworth 2014-07-30 00:00:00Z 0

Special Events

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 29, 2014

Beca Deschamps said she'd been to RYLA in April and had a great time - she met new friends, learned many new skills including leadership techniques, had great meals, enjoyed music and games and gained self knowledge.  They fill out a questionnaire before going and are presented, upon arrival, with the results and with an analysis of their personality type and lessons on how to use that analysis to work with others.  It encouraged participants to look at themselves from the outside and to focus on their strengths.  This gave her more confidence in dealing with others.  She thanked the Club for the opportunity and Maureen thanked her for representing the Club.

Ralph said he'd met Liz Fowler when she opposed a severance application he was pursuing.  She was born in Maple, moved to Toronto to go to U of T in Psychology.  She married Michael in 2008 and they reconsidered their life style and decided to leave the city.  Now she has two on line Jewelry sales operations and loves the commute - zero miles.

Dave has known Jim MacMillan for 40 years through skiing and camp when they were kids and back here after he went to Guelph to take degrees in bio sciences and a BEd as well as qualifying as an outdoors experience educator.  He married Joan in 1982 and they have three children.  He loves the outdoors, is an excellent musician with his own recording studio and is recently retired from teaching.

Jamie Tripp welcomed them both to Rotary and said that joining was one of life's milestones and an avenue for giving back.  As members we each represent our vocation to Rotary and Rotary to the community at large.  Jamie suggested that there are stages to membership - the new member is eager to get involved, the more mature member looks to take a leadership role and direct activities and the older or longer serving member lends his or her experience to the Club.  All of these stages are enjoyable and each member can move through these stages as they feel best.  Rotary applies the 4 way test to all its members do for the Club and in their lives but finally what a person gets from Rotary depends on what they give.  Our newest members were presented with their regalia and the best selling history by a famous author.

Special Events Bill Molesworth 2014-07-30 00:00:00Z 0

Community Reach

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 22, 2014

Jessica Caplan has been with Community Reach for 9 years and is President of the Southern Georgian Bay Network of Community Groups.

She said it used to be called Community Link for 15 years and has recently gained charitable status.  It has 3 areas of interest - volunteerism, transfer of patients and housing.  Jessica is the Volunteer Co-ordinator and the Centre Co-ordinator and she works to locate and place volunteers in programs of interest to them and for events and program.

There are 23 other Community Reach volunteer centres in the Province and they have all been working on a program - 6 years now - called Change the World which tries to engage youth as volunteers.  It offers interested young people a 6 week introduction to programs through 57 events across the area.

Transportation includes the Accessible Transit service which is an extension of Midland Transit, and also driving, by volunteers, of North Simcoe People, especially lower income people, to hospitals and appointments as far away as Toronto.  This service is free and operates 24/7 because some equipment, like the MRI in Barrie, operates around the clock.  They also help some clients with shopping trips and have combined the volunteer aspect with that by providing assistance.  Wheelchair accessible vehicles are driven by trained personnel, is open to anyone who has limited accessibility and can't use regular transit.  It covers Midland and Penetang and operated Monday to Friday between 9 and 5.  There is a charge of $2.50 per ride.  They have 400 registered clients and run about 400 trips and month.

Housing is a growing need as costs increase and the economy stutters.  They offer emergency financial assistance, access to provincial housing, emergency shelter and they run a housing registry.  They can direct people to food help, they partner with Ontario Works to introduce people to financial literacy and also work with youth who are still in school but need help with shelter and life skills.

Now that they have their charitable status they are organizing some fund raising efforts, including a golf tournament and the Georgiam Bay Thunder ride was part of the events of Bike Week at Little Lake Park.

Community Reach Bill Molesworth 2014-07-23 00:00:00Z 0

Club Assenbly

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 06, 2014

Terri said that Club Service had introduced the Thirsty Thursdays at the Best Western which was popular and that there will be a Civic Luncheon on June 11 at the BW.  The speaker has waived his fee and proceeds will go to the Foundation.  The Committee has been trying to organize a group trip to the theatre but scheduling is difficult.

Dave reports that Community Service started with $120,000.00 and has committed about $95,000.00 of that.  They are currently considering requests from Shelter Now and the Gymnastics Club.  They plan to work on signage on the trail system, especially sgns that recognize the efforts of Duncan and Ed in their creation.  The Committee is in talks with the Town about turning the Esso station lot on King St. into a park and an outdoor skating rink.  It is a brownfield site and building will not happen there for a long time.  If the company agrees to lend the site it will cost between $25 and 30,000.00.

Vocational Service has presented today's award and, Jamie Tripp said, will be welcoming a new inbound student from Ecuador in August.  Naomi has been keeping up with the Student of the Month awards and there will be an Adventure in Citizenship and in Technology program this spring.  Jamie says work on an Interact Club for the High Schools for next year will start soon.

Joyce reported that the Club's goal for the Foundation this year is $11,875.00 and we are at $11,794.00 which is $274.00 per capita.  The goal for Polio was $15,000.00 and $14,000.00 has been raised.  She encouraged members to consider becoming benefactors by making a donation in our wills.

International has $13,000.00 left from 50, said Bill.  10 went to the Philipines which suffered terribly and John Lahr managed to increase that by 4 with matching grants.  $5,000.00 is supporting the St. T's kids in Kenya and the Club contributed to HART IV.  Bill noted some of that mission's many achievements which he sent out last week under separate cover.  The Committee is exploring the possibility of another mission to either South America or Africa in 2015 and received a strong indication of interest from many members.

Mora said her goal had been to get membership to 50 and we stand at 51.  11 have joined and 3 have left the Club.  Including the honouraries our total is 64 - 67% of whom are male.

Ron Crane reminded the Club that we do have a charitable number and can issue receipts.  There are some new by laws affecting clubs coming which he will be reporting on soon.  President's Night is June 26 and there will be a disco theme.  It's at the BW and there will not be a lunch meeting that day.

Maureen is off to Australia for the Conference, she plans to reintroduce the speaker's board - each one bring one and we'll be done.  She's also going to ask each of us to discuss their individual Rotary Moment.  This year's theme is Light Up Rotary which expresses the intention to raise awareness of Rotary in the community.  The September conference will be in Val d'Or.

Hank distributed a report on the Club's bank balances and discussed billing practices briefly.

Britt thanked the Board for their work.

Club Assenbly Bill Molesworth 2014-05-07 00:00:00Z 0

Vocational Service Award

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 06, 2014

Jamie Tripp said that the Midland Club has been awarding this honour since Fred Hacker introduced it 1979 and over the 35 years has presented it to 43 deserving residents.  It's always difficult to pick just one person from the many who reflect the goals of Rotary by dignifying their classification, personifying ethical conduct and working to foster peace.  Dave spoke for himself and Michele who had nominated Betty Valentine by saying that she does things quietly.  She is retired from her position as Treasurer of Penetangquishene but continues to exemplify Service Above Self.  She's a friend to Rotary, she volunteers as a reader to the blind, she campaigns for Heart and Stroke, is the finance chair of St. Anne's church, is a lay minister and serves on the Parish Council and works with Youth Groups.  She's on the Board of Rosewood, works with Hospice Huronia and is the co-leader of the local Terry Fox run since 1984, helping to raise over $1,000,000.00.  Betty volunteers at the Penetang Library and has served on their Board, is the GBGH Finance Chair, was the Vice Chair of the Waypoint Board and will be Chair this year.  David thanked Betty for all her service and said it gave he and Michele great pleasure to present this well deserved award.  Betty thanked them both for the nomination and said she was very touched by it but noted that many other people are part of it all.  She says she is very aware that giving is important but that by giving you receive so much.  You grow, you meet people, you learn about other parts of the community and it has all been a wonderful experience.  This is a special award for her, she said, because she is such a big fan of Rotary and she thanked the Club for the recognition.

Vocational Service Award Bill Molesworth 2014-05-07 00:00:00Z 0

Highlights of last two meetings

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 29, 2014

Bill Richardson said that the experience of trips like HART III typified the values of Rotary and that HART IV was in the DR now and that Midland Rotary had contributed $2,500.00 to support those workers.  Now 21 students from ST. T's are undertaking a similar trip - to Kenya - and he expected they will get as much out of it as they give.  On behalf of the International Committee and Midland Rotary he presented representatives with a cheque for $5,000.00.

David Gravelle told us a bit about the work of Physician Recruitment and the new doctors who have moved here.  He said the best results are coming from the U of T's rural placement program.  While Midland has been involved, all the doctors who have taken part have stayed, until this year.  But the two expressed their gratitude for the experience and the welcome they had received while here and spoke to the value of their time here.

Jim Shaw chaired the meeting of the 23rd, in Britt's absence.  He said the last time he had taken up the gavel was 45 years ago so we could relax - he won't be doing it again till 2059.  Jim was born on Hugel over near Dollartown and became a dentist working out of the building on Midland Ave. that was torn down so Bourgeois could park more cars till they moved up to Hwy. 12.  People said he wouldn't go far and they were right - only a few blocks, he said, and all downhill.

Jim lost his mother while he was in grade 7 and his father during grade 10.  His olders siblings had moved out and away but he had learned solid values and how to work from his parents so, with a very small inheritance of $10.00 a week and 20 hours a week at work and the help of neighbours who took him in as a boarder he managed to become one of the first graduating class at MSS and then go on to Guelph to the Agricultural College.  He actuallly signed up for an MA in bacteriology but quit that fairly quickly and moved into dentistry, graduating in 1964.  He had already met his wife - they were married in 1959 and are celebrating 55 years.

His father had been in the first war - fought and wounded at Vimy but patched up and sent back to the trenches.  During the second he joined the veterans' guard and worked at a prison camp in Gravenhurst.  Jim has visited Vimy twice.  Jim and his wife have a son who's the best social worker in Canada and a daughter who is Communications Director for Canadian Tire, nationally.

In 1965 they were invited to Dean's house along with Clare Armstrong and Johny Walker and the resulting enthusiasm led him to join Rotary.  He has enjoyed it - has been Secretary and President, been to 5 District Conferences, was Assistant DG, helped with Group Study Exchanges and 5 International Student Exchange visits.  He says he just tried to contribute and has been awared the Service Above Self Award.  He is thrilled to be able to come back to Rotary, to be welcomed so warmly and to enjoy the meetings.

He retired in 2002 but soon afterwards fell and broke his leg and multiple myeloma of the bone was discovered.  He says he has had excellent treatment, has had chemo, radiation, a transplant and back surgery which was successful but which left him paralyzed though through a lot of work he has moved from a chair to a walker and sometimes to a cane.  His cancer is in remission and he's going to rehab - all because we are fortunate enough to live in a generous society with medical.  His philosophy has been "You can say I can or I can't and either way you're right". so he just hopes to keep going.  Fred thanked Jim for chairing the meeting and for sharing his story.


On the 30th the Midland and Penetanguishene Clubs visited the new Waypoint Centre.  Maureen and Anita Dubeau welcomed us and introduced Carol Lambie who gave us an overview of this great new facility.  20% of Canadians have some mental health problems through their lives, over 4,000 a year commit suicide and, of those that do suffer as many as 90% are unemployed which means an impact of 50 billion dollars a year to the economy.

Waypoint's predecessor opened in the 1860's as a place for problem boys and became an asylum in 1904.  In 2008 it was divested from the Province and is now part of the Catholic Health Organization.  There are 1,200 employees, it has a budget of $110 million, 300 beds of which 150 are Provincial Forensic beds and the rest are Regional.  They admit over 850 people a year and discharge about the same number.  They are able to offer many special Mental Health and addiction programs to over 1,000 outpatients who are supported by the local hospitals and the Hero program.

It is the only Maximum Security Forensic Mental Health hospital in Ontario.  With the new facility they are embarking on a new program of research in co-operation with U of T and Lakehead.  The new building cost $471 million, is 350,000 sq. ft. and houses a pool, a gym, an auditorium and conference facilities and will house 200 of the residents.

We broke into smaller groups and were taken on a tour of this great new facility.  A big part of the redesign has been geared to increasing the connection between departments by getting them under the same roof, enhancing communications and atmosphere and improving recreation facilities.  It has been designed so there is flexibility - seperate entrances for patients and public which enhance security and accessibility to the recreational facilities.  There is a patient run store, a woodshop, an upholstery shop, a hairdressing salon, a kitchen and classrooms which have all moved out of the cold, dark and damp basement into spaces with windows.

New technologies enhance security while reducing the need for the bars and gates sense of a prison, the spaces for patients are pleasant, well lit and comfortable and the work areas are designed to provide sight lines and management from a central work station.  We were one of the last groups to move through the whole facility as patients began to move in on Monday.

Highlights of last two meetings Bill Molesworth 2014-04-30 00:00:00Z 0

Karen McGrath' Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 15, 2014

John Lister introduced Karen as the CEO at GBGH and said it's an honour to have her join us.  It turned out, when he mentioned it to her, that she had already decided to join as part of joining the community.

Karen said she was born a Mahoney in St. John's Newfoundland.  Her parents were John and Carmel.  She was the first and an only for 7 years and found that adjusting to having a sister, Erin, was a shock.  Her mother and her aunts were known as The Galway Girls and were dancers and instructors so Karen and her sister had their Saturdays scheduled from the ages of 3 to 16.  Her paternal grandfather was Thomas and had lost a leg in WW I but he never talked about it - he went to the Legion instead.

After Erin her parents got into a rhythm and in short order there was Lynn, Tom, Dennis and John.  As an only child she had gone to private school but she was moved over to the Catholic system.  Her uncle had a Volkswagon dealership and that's what her parents drove - this crowd in a beetle to school - there's pictures to prove it.

She attended the Regional High School for girls - 1,200 of them - and was a debutante at the Lieutenant Governor's in 1970.  She graduated that year and went to Memorial.  Her dad was a Liberal in Smallwood's government so there was always politics at the table, along with smoking and rum, and she has been a keen observer of politics ever since.  Her father served as Attorney General.  She received a BSW in 1975 and continued working, having started at the Y at 16.  At 17 she met her future husband and they married in 1974.  Her wedding photo showed her in a dress that Margaret Trudeau later copied.

Tom was born in 1979 and Bob in 1981.  In 1989 Karen went back to school for an MBA and graduated in 1995 with the help and support of her family.  As the kids got older she and Bob went on cruises but he became ill and died in 2011 after 37 years of marriage.  Karen retired from Central Health in Newfoundland in January of 2013 and looked for a post retirement job.  She wanted to live in Ontario but not in the sprawl of Toronto so finds Midland a good location for a new adventure in life.  She has committed to 5 years and then - ?

Karen McGrath' Classification Bill Molesworth 2014-04-16 00:00:00Z 0

The Liberation Cycle Tour

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 08, 2014

Dave Mink introduced the Grahams, Frank Sr., Jr. and Chester who told us last year about their plan to cycle from Juno to Holland with some young people and who were back to tell us how it went.  Rotary did contribute some support to the program.

Chester thanked the Club for its support and said the first annual Liberation Tour had been a great success.  7 people from Midland, 14 from Chatham and 22 from Holland cycled 700 kms last April and May.  There were 10 support staff and a buss and a trailer along as well.

Starting at Juno Beach and visiting and laying wreaths at places like Dieppe, Vimy, Flanders, The Bridge Too Far and the National Liberty Museum they experienced many unforgettable events.  They were accompanied by members of the Chatham Pipe Band and had a Piper at each stop.  The Dutch have established monuments on a tour through their country and one will feature Frank.

A group of cyclists aged between 18 and 28 years will be coming from Holland from Aug. 9 to 15 this year for a visit and to experience some of our area with a trip to Algonquin and to Chatham.  Frank said they will be looking for help with billeting and in defraying some of their expenses and he would be providing more information on that later.  Then there will be a second Liberation Tour in 2015 that will go through parts of Germany, Poland and Czechoslovakia.  The Grahams will be taking part in that too, including Frank Sr., which would make 11 trips for him since the end of the war.

Chester showed us a series of short videos highlighting various aspects of the tour and said there are more to watch on You Tube.  He thanked the Club again for its support. 

The Liberation Cycle Tour Bill Molesworth 2014-04-09 00:00:00Z 0

Kathy Watson Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 01, 2014

Britt was happy to introduce Kathy as an old friend and someone who had been thinking about joining and has now been with the Club for a year.  When she moved to the Midland branch of the wrong bank she felt more comfortable about joining.  Britt said that Kathy offers a lot to the Club - she's fun, cute, keen and really that nice.

Kathy broke her talk down to fun facts - after she showed us a real icebreaker.  Her father owned the Shell station in Penetang and she started working there at $0.50/hr. and she had to bike to work.  Her father kept her and her brother on different shifts to maintain a level of peace and managed to imbue them both with a strong work ethic.  Her brother runs the station now and has a wife and 2 boys who play triple A hockey and golf when the ice is out.  The whole family is competitive - Kathy has won a few long drive contests and hits over 210 yards.

Kathy and her husband, a contractor, have 3 boys, as shown by the picture of the contents of her bag - something for every occasion that might arise - including shopping.  She knows her credit card number.  By the way Scotia Bank is offering a card with points already attached.  They got married on Beausoleil in 2005 and the kids are 8, 6 and 3.  Her husband has a crew of 4 and always seems to have different priorities when it comes to repairs around the house.

Her kids started skiing at 2 and they boat in the summer and go to the cottage.  They have been building on a site in Palisade Bay for 6 years, enjoying the closeness of a 10 by 10 bunky in the meantime.  She hates snakes, gossip, Chinese foo, heights (her husband skydives) and, though a big fan of movies, doesn't like sci-fi ones.

She has taken up cross fit which has introduced her to new friends and has led to entering 'tough mudder' competitions - 18 ks of up and down with obstacles like having to jump in water with ice floating in it and climbing up to a platform only to jump off into mud.

She started with the bank as a co-op student 25 years ago and has since held 10 positions in 8 places.  Now that she's branch manager her she has the opportunity to volunteer, join Rotary, do gymnastics, play golf and go curling, and participate in the Big Brothers, Big Sisters and the Terri Fox events.  Scotiabank has supported the MCC, the MPL and the hospital foundation among other causes.  She thanks Britt for encouraging for her friendship and invitation to the Club and also Phil and Bill for their encouragement.  She is enjoying Rotary and looks forward to learning more about it all.

In the meantime, in case you were wondering, she loves blue, daisies, a jeep she had once, skiing, golf, boating, photography, shopping and playing the piano, raw crossfit and Maui.  Scotia Bank also fits in there. 

Britt thanked her and declared the Club happy that Kathy has joined.

Kathy Watson Classification Bill Molesworth 2014-04-02 00:00:00Z 0

The Uniman Lands

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 18, 2014

John De Carli introduced Wes Crown, a planner for 25 years in both public and private practice and His Worship Gord McKay who has worked at DND, the BMO, KPMG and, since moving to Midland has been a volunteer, a councillor and the Mayor.

Mayor McKay said the waterfront project is like Rotary in that it is an exercise in community building driven by vision.  As Rotary has done with polio, working as a team to a vision can change the world.  Change is often resisted as people only see what they will lose.  But if we can look to the long term we can see benefit for everyone.  The Mayor had recently visited Niagara on the Lake and Fort Erie, both towns at the mouth of the same river, both founded in the 1800's.  But Niagara on the Lake is constantly evolving, developing new visions and moving towards them and we all know about the attractions of that community.  Fort Erie, though, has not managed anything like that.

This opportunity - seeing these lands come up for sale - has generated a vision - make this area Midland's Front Porch on the Bay.  It can be our connection to the water and can bring new energy to the whole area.  It can go beyond layout and become transformative.

Wes Crown described the steps taken so far.  The action plan has been publicized and is posted on the website so that awareness has been spread across the Province.  Possible development partners have been approached.  Excitement is building.  The site has 3,300 ft. of shoreline and is 40 acres.  It is the most significant development site on the Bay.

Planning approvals are being sought.  There is an full awareness that the site has long been industrial.  In Jan. 2013 an Interim Control Bylaw was approved by Council that, though controversial, was necessary because it froze all and any development until a Master Plan could be developed to control development there and into the future.  There have been two public workshops, both well attended and, in comparison to other public meetings, the audience was huge.  The community's comments and vision have been included in the plan.  It is not to be a 40 acre park - it is intended to be a mixed community and a neighbourhood with 800,000 to over a million sq. ft.  A 6 - 7 acre civic square and amphitheatre will be the central focus and the entire shoreline will be in the public realm with an active trail system running through the area.

The site will have 27% green space where most subdivisions are required to only contribute 5%.  The purchase process includes an environmental study which is ongoing but the final decision should be made before the end of this year.  The plan defines the non-negotiables in that it tells the developers what will not be allowed but gives them freedom to exercise creativity within those bounds.  Intensity and height levels will decrease from W to E (4,5,6 stories down to 2 or 3) and commercial will transition into residential through the same zones.

Currently Mr. Crown's department is drafting planning reports, they hosted an open house on March 5 and there will be a public meeting of the Planning Committee on April 2.  They are aware that recent developments like Bayport have been halted and know that completion is a long way off but they are thinking long term.

The Uniman Lands Bill Molesworth 2014-03-19 00:00:00Z 0

Park Bench to CEO

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 11, 2014

Dwayne introduced Joe Roberts who used to push a shopping cart around Vancouver but since 1998 has shared his story with over 2,000 audiences. 

Joe said he was somewhat emotional as it's the first time he's been back to Midland in years.  And well dressed too, as he was when he was the defendant.  Joe has been on a journey.  His grandfather had a radio station in Midland and his mother had 4 brothers who were raised with lots of laughter.  But we all face challenges, experience changes in our lives, our health and in our families.  Humour does let us shift the context and lighten the load.

But, in 1989 Joe had all his possessions in a shopping cart and was sleeping under a viaduct in Vancouver experiencing the vicious cycle of addiction - hunt down recyclables, cash them in, score, get high.  This had lasted for years because he believed a lie about himself and, effectively, manipulated himself into the situation.

He was born into a typically middle class family and, to him, his dad was a hero.  He coached Joe's teams, he took the family camping, he worked, but in 1975 he died, leaving his wife with 3 kids and no income.  She struggled but ended up in a situation with a violent, alcoholic police officer who made the home dangerous.  At school Joe felt he didn't fit in.  By 15 he was out of the house, by 16 he had a police record and by 17 he was into drugs.  In the 80's he moved to Vancouver where he was homeless.  He couldn't tell his mother because the depravity and dereliction he was living with was in such conflict with his training that his shame held him back.

One day in 1989 he was cold and wet and going through withdrawal and in desperation for a fix he sold his boots.  Something about this, the added level of suffering, was the catalyst for change and he became willing to become different.  He prayed and he made deals with himself and reached out.  His mom got him back to Ontario, into a Salvation Army treatment centre in Belleville and, after 6 months sober he went back to school.  His perspective was a little different from most students - he'd been outside everything for years - and his first reaction on the campus was that there were lots of cans lying around.

He made connections with others.  The professors became mentors and he graduated with a 3.9 grade point average.  He was lucky there but mostly in his mother who never stopped loving him and was there for him when he was ready.  He is driven now by the knowledge that there are kids out there without that kind of support.

A brother had moved to Vancouver and invited him to start there but after a few weeks his sister-in-law started 'suggesting' he make a move and told him Minolta was hiring.  Homelessness had given him an off beat fashion sense so he showed up in wide wale cords, a herringbone jacket with one elbow patch and a plaid shirt.  The interviewer told him he had to have conviction and he figured he had lots of those.  He ended up cold calling stores for copiers.  He sold three in three months, realising more money than he had ever made legally.  Years later when Joe was being profiled in major magazines this interviewer was asked why Joe got hired.  He said it wasn't for the outfit but that you can't teach hungry.

After another year he moved to a different company as a sales manager and then to being the business development manager for a tech firm that rode the 90's boom and sold in time. 

He said we live in an amazing country - his health care and education were paid for and now he's in a position to pay back.  Success was not enough.  He's led seminars and street experience programs - taking CEO's panhandling and sleeping overnight - but now he wants to raise awareness.  He's going to push a shopping cart across the country, starting this spring.  He's already done a trial run, from Calgary to Vancouver to establish it can be done.  So we'll be hearing more about Joe pretty soon.

Park Bench to CEO Bill Molesworth 2014-03-12 00:00:00Z 0

Kristin and Kilimanjaro

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 25, 2014

Fred introduced Kristin as a well behaved and punctual physiotherapist, a graduate of Wilfred Laurier post secondary High School and McMaster University and a proud climber who, 20 years after her accident, has achieved the summit of Kilimanjaro.

Kristin said that Outward Bound Canada was planning a climb and a place had been taken by her employer to be given to the person who submitted a video application that spoke to the challenge.  She showed the video she submitted which reported on the very serious accident she and her friend had suffered when another car T-boned them.  Her prognosis at the time was that recovery was doubtful and that she was probably looking at life in a wheelchair.  Instead she is married and the proud mother of two daughters.  She wanted to do the trip for herself - to establish that she could - and to be an inspiration for her daughters.

She had to raise $5,000.00 for the Outward Bound and train for the physical requirements, most specifically, for being at high altitudes.  Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa.  The base camp they started from is at 5,900 ft. and the Huronia airport is at 700.  It is in a national park - the mountain, not the airport - and they had to register with the rangers. 

Their group of 20 had a support team of porters, cooks and guides of over 40.  Kristen wondered at first if this was representative of a spoiled group of westerners taking advantage but came to realize that it was a major source of employment for the area. Leaving the base camp and climbing over 3,000 feet they started to leave the rain forest.  The second day gained another 3,000 plus feet and the vegetation got thinner and the temperature dropped.  By day 3 they were in an alpine desert with moonlike terrain and lava rock formations.  On occasion they suffered heavy rain and hail.  Some started to feel the effects of mountain sickness.

Day 4 saw a major challenge and a long climb up a steep wall face that ended with them at the top but not very much higher but they were at 13,325 ft.  Because they didn't gain a lot of altitude it gave them a bit of a chance to acclimate themselves and to see the unique plants that grow only on these slopes.  Day 5 took them another 2,700 fit up and to the place they would use as the jumping off point for the summit.  As temperatures at the top were minus 15 to minus 20 they had to dress carefully - layers - and store snacks and cameras and water in a way that they wouldn't freeze but still be accessible.

To reach the top at sunrise they had to start at 11:00 pm the night before so day 6 started with a long climb in the dark, using head lights and following in the footsteps of the person before them.  One climber suffered hypothermia and nausea but with help was able to recover enough to carry on.  By 6 am they were at the top, above the clouds and witness to the sunrise.  They were tired and most didn't feel to well but they had all made it.  What took them 7 hours to climb took them 2 hours to retrace - mostly by sliding down a dirt trail.  They had gone up another 3,400 ft. and then dropped 6,800 so they were happy to be back where there was a bit more oxygen.

Kristen felt she had met her goals, raising the money and making the climb and that she had met the challenges that were presented and worked with the other members of the group as a team. 

Kristin and Kilimanjaro Bill Molesworth 2014-02-26 00:00:00Z 0

Forrest Willett

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 18, 2014

Christine said we might remember Forrest from his days at Tom Smith when he lived on a crane for 48 hours for charity and for much other community work including support for the Villa Lodge, Big Brothers, and as a Volunteer fire fighter.  He is the founder of the Uncle Buck's chain of stores.  He suffered a traumatic brain injury in a car accident in 2002 and has had to relearn walking, talking, reading and writing.  He now is a motivational speaker and leads sessions in human potential.

Forrest thanked the Club for the welcome and for all the work it does in the community.  He said an accident is the last thing on your mind until it is the only thing you can think about but he said that he hoped that his success in recovering would inspire others to work towards their dreams because it is all possible.  In 2002 he was a passenger in a car he was trying to sell to the guy who was driving while on the phone and he woke up several days later lost.  He had lost himself as a husband and father and friend and he had no memory of the accident. 

He said we all have a plan but what if we get punched in the face?  He recognized people but he couldn't remember their names and he couldn't speak.  He suffered 5 years of physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and many surgeries and felt that there was no progress and he was suffering from depression, anxiety and pain and was on a mass of meds.  This kind of accident disrupts everyone's life and most families don't survive it - only about 5% of couples stay married.  It changes the victim and the family members. 

One morning buried in bed he heard Jack Canfield talk about his book on self improvement and decided he needed to read it.  This encouraged him to do better at learning to read and once he had studied the book and worked on the principles he came off his medication, went back to school - he had to smoke up a couple with the kids in the back to convince them he wasn't a narc - and went to university.  He worked with a psychologist, did exercise and wrote his own book.  Oprah ran a contest to make an inspirational video and, encouraged by his mother-in-law, who's the Oprah fan, he made one that won.  Now he says he's better than he used to be.

Sometimes, he says, you win and sometimes you learn.  It's important to realise that there is more to learn and that we need to have dreams, not complaints.  Complaints assume that someone somewhere is having something or doing something better.  It won't come to you - you have to make the change, to deal.  An Event plus the Response equals the outcome and we have the input on the response.  Thanks, he says, to the support he got, he got a good outcome.

We can't compare ourselves to others, we have to strive on our own.  Use humour - it's one of the five things that release endorphins that inspire us to feel better.  The others are sunshine, love, chocolate and exercise.  Work towards your goal but do things for others - it comes back 5 times.

He admitted that dealing with insurance companies was hard - they can make you a victim again.  The driver also suffered brain damage and has been divorced.  He said it is good that more people are dealing more openly with mental health issues and brain damage but that as awareness grows and acceptance for seeking help becomes wider spread the lack of psychiatric help is becoming problematic.

Britt thanked him for his inspiration and presented him with his donor plaque.

Forrest Willett Bill Molesworth 2014-02-19 00:00:00Z 0

Junior Achievement

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 11, 2014

Kathy Watson introduced Cameron White who is now retired in Huntsville and has been in Rotary since 1999 and has served on several committees and as President.  He's the father of 3 and the grandfather of 8.  Cameron works with Junior Achievement of Peterborough, Lakeland, Muskoka and is manager of program development.

JA is an international organization that helps educate and inspire kids in economics and business, the value of free enterprise and to help improve their quality of life.  At the core of the program is the importance of financial literacy.  JA connects professionals, who volunteer, with students to share their professional knowledge and experience in a classroom setting.  All visits are by invitation of the teacher and are sponsored.

JA PLM will extend from Orillia to Collingwood soon but it has already been in the Midland area for 14 years and Jane Barnett has been the co-ordinator here for a while.  Local chapters work under the regional umbrella.  The first ones in Canada were in Windsor and Vancouver. 

There are 5 programs - to gr. 3, gr. 5, gr. 7, gr. 8 and one in second year HS.  The first program shows how money gets spent and where it goes.  In gr. 5 they run a small business by pricing components for a pen, deciding on assembly strategies, setting a selling price and marketing.  In gr. 7 the focus is on financial literacy and the kids open an account, work on saving and investing and talk about having money grow for education, etc.  In gr. 8 they talk about economics for success and are encouraged to do the best they can through HS so that when they come out they will be in a position to make choices - not just have to take the first job they can.  Cameron says that now people have 5 or more jobs through a career and kids have to take responsibility not only for their choices but for putting themselves into strong positions so they can make choices.  In gr. 10 they run a business on line.

A classroom typically divides into thirds - one that gets involved right away, one that can be prompted and one that has already signed off and needs help.  The program goes to schools to present the service and seeks an invitation to a class.  Then volunteers are recruited and sponsorship funds sought.  Each program costs about $600.00.  It is a vehicle for business professionals to give back to the community by using their experience to benefit kids.  The program is seeking both financial and volunteer assistance.  It is an 8 hour commitment, about.

In Midland there are 15 programs running but there is potential for many more.  Already the Royal Bank, the Bank of Nova Scotia and the Huronia Foundation are sponsors.  The money goes to paying for the kits the kids get, expenses and a staff person in Peterborough.

Junior Achievement Bill Molesworth 2014-02-12 00:00:00Z 0

Report from John van Lahr

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 04, 2014

Bill introduced John who has been a Rotarian for 25 years, a Past President and Past District Governor, and his wife Cora, a member of the club in Cebu.  Bill thinks the two of them are doing terrific work in the Phillipines and invited John to tell us a bit about it.

John thanked the Midland Club for its support in the past saying that when they need help, they come to Midland.  The Club helped with typhoon relief after the local Clubs had been unable to because they'd spent their resources on earthquake relief.

This Club and many others are involved in several initiatives.  The Mobile Eye Clinic accommodates two opticians that travel to places that never see medical personnel.  The Gift of Life has provided instruments and funding for heart operations - 44 so far.  There is work being done on a vaccine to combat Dengue Fever which killed 100 in Cebu last year.  There is a fire truck for the volunteers now.  There is a dental van that takes 2 dentists out and the military provides the driver.  There's also an all terrain ambulance funded by the club in Whitehorse.

There is a skill training facility with 44 apprentice welders and they will soon be running housekeeping and construction courses.  The Midland Club is helping support the Back to School initiative, which John has talked to us about before, that tries to get kids off the dump and give them a chance - Literacy is the bridge from misery to hope.  256 kids went the first year and 19 other clubs are helping, including 3 from Michigan.  There are 5,000 street kids in Cebu and John and Cora have started a mentorship program that puts young college grads in touch with some of them to help them through school.

40% of students drop out by gr. 6 and they won't be taken back so there is now the Alternative Learning System that parallels the regular school and gets children a HS degree.  1,200 are enrolled and some have graduated and taken jobs at Lear Industries so they can be independent and support their families.  There is also a Computer Scholars program for non-skilled migrants from the country who need skills to get any kind of a job. 

John showed us the graduating class with a banner they had made that said "Thank You For Giving Us Hope".  The whole first class has a job and with that comes dignity and self esteem.  It only takes $50.00 a year to give a student schooling and nutrition so "keep it up".

What you do for others will live on.

Report from John van Lahr Bill Molesworth 2014-02-05 00:00:00Z 0

Fireside Jan 2014

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 28, 2014

There were three delegations

Dave introduced Mike Hamelin abd Trent Simons of The Next Door.  They are working to establish a transitional housing facility for at risk youth, looking to emulate 'Youth Haven' which has been operating in Barrie since 1987.  While there are interim options, the Salvation Army and others, youth at risk have special needs - one of which is to not be included in facilities with adults who, often, are not the best role models.  There is a Board in place and they are incorporated and have a $5,000.00 donation from St. Mark's to get started.

Youth Haven took in over 700 young adults last year, including 15 from Midland.  It is not just a shelter - staff act as mentors.  The goal of The Next Door is to host 25 in the first year at hotels and to provide them with food and clothint while the staff evaluate need, help develop an individual life plan, assist with returning to school and generally provide support.  The long term goal is to have a facility.  They expect to need about $15,000.00 in the first year. 

They estimate there are between 50 and 75 homeless or at risk youth in North Simcoe - runaways, the kicked out, the escapees from abuse and many have mental health concerns and drug problems.  They need structure, counseling, support in making decisions, help with child care, addiction support.  A shelter bed costs $1,933.00 but putting them in jail costs $4,300.00, transient shelters over $6,000.00 and hospital over $10,000.00.

Elephant Thoughts, which had spoken at a regular lunch, was back to ask Midland to join several other Rotary Clubs in supporting their educational initiatives in the North.  First Nations youth have all the issues mentioned by the first presenters.  A lack of education makes it worse and trans generational.  An investment in early education is the best response.  Residential schools still cast a huge shadow over First Nations even though the last one was closed in 1996.  An entire generation carries the marks and has passed the effects on.

Education on reserves is a Federal responsibility and the gov't is too far removed from the reality to be effective.  Graduation rates are at 35% but in self governed reserves it can be as high as 80.  Elephant Thoughts assesses, encourages, inspires and equips schools to make education fun.  It works with schools and teachers to encourage interest, attendance, and mentoring to put students on a path to graduation and in touch with themselves.  60% are basicallly illiterate, 400,000 of them are unemployed and this represents a loss to the economy of over 10 billion dollars.

Collingwood has been supporting this for several years and now 5 clubs are involved. 

Gary Morehouse and Lu LaFrance spoke about Sistema Music in Schools.  This is a program that started in Venezuala and that uses music to inspire shildren to become better, to heal, to bond, through ensemble based co-operation which raises self esteem, teaches life skills and builds a foundation for life as an adult.

They plan to start with 15 randomly selected elementary students at Huron Park, hire a teacher, involve mentors and work with them 2 hours a day 4 days a week for 35 weeks.  They need to buy instruments - 9 violins, 4 cellos and2 violas.  The program has demonstrated success at encouraging academic improvement and attendance and at building bridges.

This is a new program and has no budget yet though they are putting on a dinner dance/silent auction and there will be a Blind Mary concert in the fall.  They do have several sponsors on board - Scotia Bank, LabX and Canadian Tire.  They anticipate expenditures of $36,630.00 this year for salary, nutrition, instruments and insurance.  They are getting assistance and advice from a similar group in Toronto.

There was a free ranging discussion on all three presentations.  There were questions about the need for a 'Next Door' and its potential effectiveness and its operatinal funding, not to mention capital requirements, and where the money would come from next year.  Essentially, the delegation did not have a business plan, there was no mention of other sponsors, other volunteers or what fund raising had already been done.

Sistema had an operations budget but no revenue projected - they expect to hold dances etc. but didn't say what they hoped to raise.  Questions about the need - MSS has a music program - and the time involved - it's a major commitment for kids and, again, where's the money coming from next year?

There was a question about how Elephant Thoughts would fit into the Club's existing priorities and whether it was a Community or an International project.  

The consensus was that the Board would review and there would be further discussions.

Mike Proulx has offered to co-ordinate Music in the Park again this summer.

Ralph reported work on POD - relations with the Town are good.  LCBO is being more stringent and Paul Hamelin has agreed to supervise security.  In the same way that HCL receives some of the proceeds because Lisa does so much on co-ordinating volunteers, the Boys and Girls Club will benefit from Paul's involvement.  Paul Larche is producing new posters and doing promotion on his stations to benefit Radio for Radiology as well.   

Ralph said that the last few years have topped out at about 2,900 tickets sold and revenue at about $70,000.00 so 15 can go to HCL, 10-15 to R for R and 5-8 for the B and G Club leaving the rest for GBGH.  The suggestion was made to develop a percentage or a tiered structure rather than tie the Club to specific amounts so the partners suffer if there's a bad weather day and receipts drop.

Steve Rastin agreed that all these were worthwhile but wondered what had happened to the signature project idea - we should be doing something that no one else is doing.  Rotary Trails are only there because of the Club.  What else can we own?  Britt agreed to bring that subject back for more discussion.

Ron Shulman talked a bit about the Auction.  He and his team have completely redesigned it using technologies and, as a result, have lots of info on demographics of bidders, what items make money and what don't and etc.  They are now in a position to bring the auction back but need more participation from the club.  This year they only made $22,000.00 and there's lots of potential for growth.  The shift of timing was a mistake - pre Christmas donors don't want to give and buyers are pre-occupied.  He suggests postponing the next to April 2015 to give lots of time for promotion, approaching donors and raising awareness.  There are actually very few bidders - between 100 and 200 doing it all.  Ron and the Committee will be back during the year with more info and ideas.


Fireside Jan 2014 Bill Molesworth 2014-01-29 00:00:00Z 0

Fred and the MCC

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 21, 2014

Fred said the MCC had been in operation for almost 18 months and, given Rotary's support of the project, he though we might enjoy an update.  Not only did Rotary give a significant donation, many Rotarians are active in the Centre's operations.  John Lister, Alison Durtanll and himself are on the Board and Phil Edmunds, Amanda Woodman and Jamie Hunter are all working on programming.

Fred introduced the several staff who were present - Eugene Rae, the GM, Theresa, the Events Manager, Jennifer Kerr, the Assistant Manager and liaison to the box office, the volunteers and all the program committees.  Carolyn Jones and Matt Poirier are the chefs who have been in charge for about 6 months.  And of course, Reinhart Weber, whose gift of over 10 million made it possible.  There is a management committee of which Fred is the Chair, Peggy Breckinridge the Secretary, Andrew Markle, Finance Chair, Alison, in charge of marketing, and Anne Hartmann the Volunteer Co-ordinator.  There is also a Board of Directors which has representatives from Quest and Huronia Players, several appointees with a business background and Carolyn Tripp, the Town CAO.

Traffic is the aim - bums in seats, in Freds felicitous phrase.  Awareness of the Centre and its programs and features is growing in the community but attendance is still slow.  There is a mailing list of 3,000 and growing.  Rotary Hall is the centre of activity but Huronia Players is doing very well and selling out their shows almost every time.  The theatre is so well equipped and designed that it's the envy of other theatre groups.  The Atrium is a hub for meetings, performances, meals and conversation.  The food at the cafe is always changing and its reputation is growing.  Quest has two huge galleries and reports 15,000 visitors since the opening.

Volunteers staff the box office, help serve and clear tables at meals, act as ushers and coat check and do a lot of the maintenance.  The MCC is still seeking financial self sufficienicy, a very rare business model.  Meaford has a smaller facility which they support with a budget of $750,000.00.  The aim is to continue to expand programming but also to apply for grants for which, up to now, they had not been eligible for, and to see more from their partner tenants such as a recent gift from the Players.  The Atrium and the Board Room are also available for rent.

Lister is working on funding, focusing on donations to support specific programs, especially those aimed at children.  But they already have a large list of activities - concerts by Brookside Music, which had sold 2,300 tickets, and others, volunteer driven ones like Phil's Wellness and Amanda's Destinations and the Folk Club and the HUB on Monday at 5:00.

Fred sees the Centre as central to the economy and says the cultural institutions spin off 9 jobs for every one they create which means residents moving in and the cultural IQ rising which is good for all.  There are challenges - traffic, financial sustainability and maintaining the volunteer roster - but progress is being made.

Fred and the MCC Bill Molesworth 2014-01-22 00:00:00Z 0

Radio for Radiation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 07, 2014

Mora introduced Paul Larche who was born in Timmins and started at the local station there at the age of 16.  By 24 he was General Manager and then promoted to Sudbury and then to Toronto.  In 1995 he became the GM of the 'Vacationland' stations and quickly took the opportunity to purchase the one in Midland, which meant Mora had a new boss.  He now owns 4 - Orillia, Sudbury, Orillia and Owen Sound and is launching a digital media outlet.  He has served as the President of the Association of Broadcasters and works with Georgian College.

Paul said that in 2008 they pledged to raise $500,000.00 for Radiology at the new cancer centre.  Their 5 year commitment was fulfilled in two and a half so they made a second one for Radiation, a CT simulator, and are already at $320,000.00 on that.  They have similar, very active, programs running in Sudbury and Owen Sound as well.  Paul says the company is committed to making a difference and enrich lives, just as Rotary does and, as their head office and their studios are in Midland they want to give back here.  The placement of their towers means they can effectively reach all of Simcoe County.

They have supported other organizations - $200,000.00 to the Salvation Army, $25,000.00 for beds at the GBGH and $30,000.00 plus tons of food for the food banks, among others, but their current focus is the Cancer Centre.  Since it opened it has experienced 25,000 new visits and is already near capacity.  The Simulator Suite pinpoints potential treatment sites for efficiency and economy and effectiveness.  It's the only one in Simcoe County.

The stations do a few different things like a Radiothon and benefit concerts, partnership programs and an online auction, on site fundraising and retail partners.  Working with Service Clubs, the stations will provide free promotion of special events, like the Party on the Dock, if a portion of the proceeds is donated to the R for R.  The benefits are held in partnership with Rama.  Groups that they have worked with include several local Lions Clubs, the Town of Georgian Bay's Mayor's Golf Tournament, the Port Severn Water Fest and Springwater Rotary.

Because this machine is here there has been a lot of traffic, 4,400 treatments in the first year.  By providing treatment locally patients have saved a million kilometres of driving and hundreds of hours on the road and money that would have been spent on hotels and meals.  3,000 Midland residents have been treated.

John Lister congratulated Paul on his vision and commitment to the community and credited the company values and the support of the staff for the success of the effort.

Radio for Radiation Bill Molesworth 2014-01-08 00:00:00Z 0

Shelter Now

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 10, 2013

Maureen introduced Cassandra, the development officer at Shelter Now.  She's a graduate of the fund raising program, is a first aid instructor and volunteer with St. John's Ambulance, and Sonia who has been the community support worker since 2009 but is currently acting Executive Director.  She's a Midland natvie and the mother of two sons.

Sonia said we have an image of homelessness - bums on the street - but it is more complicated and pervasisve than that.  Many people are at risk of losing their homes or are inadequately housed.  Shelter Now has 20 units that offers a transition to people from Penetang, Midland, Tiny and Tay and Christian Island.  They get referrals from all over as well as walk ins.  They house men and women, families and single parents with children, whether men or women.  Many have mental health issues, some are just burned out.  Prospective residents have to be ready to work with the team - they have to be dry and sober and getting healthy because someone drunk can be a trigger for others.

Staff help clients identify their concerns, assist them with finding funding and dealing with mental health issues, work with families on their individual needs and developing their life skills and do case management.  They encourage clients to work on personal development, to be accountable for themselves, to work towards healthy living through opportunities at the Y.  They do outreach with people on the waiting list to try to get them settled before they have to move in - proactive - and do outreach to graduates to help them maintain their new status and stability.  They are trying to develop more community awareness - both by educating the community about their work and by introducing their clients to the bigger community and its opportunities.

Cassandra explained that the facility is very structured - there are rules that create a supportive environment.  Usually it takes more than 6 months to really get someone thinking differently - a client can stay for a year - but over the 5 years they have been there they have 'transitioned' 118 people into better circumstances, people who are now able to support themselves.  A few are asked to leave - only two so far this year - if they present a risk to others.

They do receive funding from a variety of sources but they do fundraising too.  This year will see the 2nd annual Bowl for Beds where school children participate in a session that informs them a bit about the problems some people face and then they decorate a clay bowl which is fired and sold filled with soup.  15 restaurants are participating by providing the soup on Sunday, April 27.  There will be a silent auction, live music and etc.  Their goal is $20,000.00.

A couple of years ago they bought the land next door for a Phase 2 but anticipated government funding fell through so they are still working on that.  They are already the largest such facility in Simcoe - they have 20 beds and the next one has only 8.  They would be glad to welcome visitors and if you phone ahead you can schedule a tour.  Meet the team and some of the two dozen or so residents on site.  Now's not the best time but the community garden, which Rotary contributed to and which Home Depot supports with plants and training, is well established and supplies a lot of food.  The hope to build a greenhouse, they have a park like sitting area and residents participate in gardening, shopping, planning and preparation of meals.

They thanked the Club for its support and encouraged members to visit.

Shelter Now Bill Molesworth 2013-12-11 00:00:00Z 0

Water Filters

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 03, 2013

Gary introduced Fred Segal who came from Pittsburgh to talk about his water filter and his work with other Clubs in Rotary.  Fred worked for 25 years in media and journalism and was National Sales Manager for WNEU TV.  He was educated at U of Pittsburgh in Art and Metallurgical Materials Engineering.  His filter is World Health Organization compliant and it stores water for future use.

Fred said that he started when he was talking to a Bishop who was promoting the drilling of wells in impoverished places and asked how the water would be cleaned.  He has since dedicated himself to this because he feels water and sanitation are the next Polio.  A UN Conference on Water 5 years ago reported that 2.9 billion people are without dependable supplies of clean water and now that number is closer to 5 billion.  Pollution now affects water down to over 600 metres and most places don't have the infrastructure to clean it.

Every 20 seconds a child dies from water borne disease.  He has sent his filters to 42 countries.  They are rated extreme protective class - they use no energy and no chemicals and they last 10 years between filters.  Each one maintains 18 liltres of water so clean water is available for cooking too.  Water that is delivered in places in Central and South America comes in trucks with no provenance and is scooped out with whatever is handy.  Water taken from rivers is full of bacteria.  The water that comes out of his filters is positively ionized which actually helps attack worms that are already ingested.  Water goes in and comes out 99.99% clean for a one time cost of $200.00.  The filter stops working when it needs cleaning every three to nine months, depending on water quality, and it is easy to clean.  The filter is made in the US and the active ingredient is a rare earth mined in Mississippi.  It is completely biodegradable.

Fred is working on obtaining a global grant which requires recruiting other clubs and he is asking for our help. 

Water Filters Bill Molesworth 2013-12-04 00:00:00Z 0

John Tomlinson

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 19, 2013

Joyce introduced John as a Rotarian for 34 years, mostly in Bolton and now in Nipissing and all with perfect attendance.  He went on a study exchange to Africa in 1999, has been to 32 District Conferences and 8 Zone Conferences, has been a Zone Trainer, is a multi PH and a benefactor as well has a PDG.  In 2007 Joyce and John and his wife went to South Africa.  He's retired after 36 years teaching and serves as a volunteer firefighter, likes to travel, play golf, work with wood and drink scotch.

John said Rotary is central to his life and to that of many but if you ask people what Rotary is, who are Rotarians, you will get different answers.  The public perception is still that of a group of older, white, well off males.  He says we have to work on branding and is glad to see the signs marking Rotary contributions in Midland.  Another common perception is that of a group of 'sellers of ticktets' and again it's a matter of getting the word out on what the proceeds do locally and internationally.

He went to meetings for years and took part in all the activities but it was the trip to South Africa that made him a Rotaran.  Sometimes we need to get hit with a brick to wake us up to the need and to how well off we are.  He led an exchange of teachers to a small school that had no washrooms, no desks (they sat on the ground under a tree), teachers with no training and class sizes ov over 90.  He had just finished supervising the construction of a new school at home and dealing with complaints from teachers, one of whom was upset because all the chairs in the room were not the same colour.  The Africans had a love for teaching and for the kids but not much else.  He knew he and his teachers had too much.

Back at the Bolton Club his story inspired a different path and, with the help of Foundation matching grants and other efforts, when he went back 7 years later there was a structure and supplies.  Every Rotarian every year.

Another visit was made to an AIDS hospital which took kids abandoned by their parents, babies, into a palliative care type place though, of course, nothing like we have in NA.  These kids were just looking for human contact, for a hug.  He was trying to comfort and quiet a baby and thought he had been successful only to find that it had died, but at least it had died in someone's arms. 

What does one do with such experiences?  He turned to the team of Rotary.  He compared how the matching aspect of the Foundation turns local donations into multiples against the big lotteries for hospitals that, according to a recent news report, only return 27% of the proceeds to the facility.  50% goes back to the district, none of it goes to admin and it can be leveraged by as much as 5 times to go to help make the world a better place.

He asks, what is the moment in the experience of each of us that makes us a Rotarian?  Be engaged, be active, be proud and follow your dream.  Every little bit helps to make a difference and we want to make that difference so we can leave the world a bit better for the next generations.

Rotary projects are sustainable and they promote activity in the area - they prime the pump.  As a Club we should be proud of what we're doing and thanks to Joyce for her work on the Foundation.

John Tomlinson Bill Molesworth 2013-11-20 00:00:00Z 0

Peter Thomas

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 12, 2013

Peter welcomed Rotary to the Community Room which they offer to groups like Wendat as a way to contribute to the community.  He said he wanted to give a bit of a behind the scenes view of what several agencies are doing to help those in need in ways that the general public may not be aware of. 

The Simcoe County Alliance to End Homelessness is composed of 6 chapters and in Midland it is at the Community Reach which hosts the Housing Registry and works with landlords and renters.  But it is only part of a 'housing continuum'.  15 years ago the idea of a shelter was introduced but it was soon apparent more was needed because the County only funds a bed for an individual for 28 days which isn't enough.  So Shelter Now was created and the Community Outreach, which is 2 guys working 20 hours a week.  These guys can identify those in need and steer them to the right place.  Shelter Now works to settle people, not just place them, and get them into permanent situations from which they can continue to improve their situation.  Because there is communication and a stream for people to follow there is little duplication and little competition for funding.

People often turn up at the food bank in need of other assistance and Peter would suggest they go to Community Reach but he never knew if they went and they didn't know to expect them so they developed an on line referral system or alert that tracked these people.  This is being reviewed by the County for wider implementation and may be introduced at the Provincial level.

Someone taken from the jail to a hearing at the Midland courthouse and released is immediately no longer a responsibility of Corrections which means they can't be put on the vehicle back to the jail.  They have to get there themselves to pick up their papers, meds and belongings.  So they would turn up at the Salvation Army.  Or they used to.  Through a local initiative that is now Provincial practice the individual is now given 'a day less served' which leaves them in the hands of corrections officers who are then allowed to take them back and release them properly.

Another problem like this was that a person out of jail had to re-register for services in Orillia but they had no way to get there.  Now, the papers are available at the local MPP's office.  Sue Skelton won a provincial award for this initiative.

It's difficult to put a number to local homelessness - people are always on the move.  But the numbers are hard.  Ontario Works gives a single person $612.00 and an average one bedroom costs about $700.00.  Even a rooming house is as much as 500.  Now they can go to the Guest House for meals and get help with moves and problems from the street team and get help gettin back on their feet.  The question Peter says he gets is "why can't they change?" and the answer, often, is cheap values.   Generations of poverty have predestined the next to different values than we accept as the norm.

There is a disconnect between our area's need for housing and the County's plan for building it.  Barrie, Collingwood, Bradford WG, Wasaga and Innisfil are getting most of the funding because they are growing the most but it is north Simcoe, with the jail and Waypoint that has the higher mental health population.

Ralph thanked Peter for his talk and for his support of Rotary - helping with the food drive and at the Party on the Dock.  He suggested Peter should join the Club. 

Peter Thomas Bill Molesworth 2013-11-13 00:00:00Z 0

RI Director Bryn Styles

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 05, 2013

Joyce introduced Bryn, a member of the Barrie Huronia Club since 1986 where he served as President before moving on to Assistant Governor and District Governor, then Zone membership Foundation Chair, editor of Membership Matters and no one of 19 RI Directors.  He's also on the national Board of the Y.  He's married to Randy and they have two children and 5 grandchildren.  He and Randy are multiple PHs and beneficiaries.

Bryn offered his congratulations on the exchange and said he's visited the Club as it moved around Midland - the Brooklea, the BW and now Rotary Hall, a wonderful facility.  He brought greetings from President Ron in Evanston and offered an update.  He said the General Secretary (the CEO) of RI retired a couple of years ago and John Huckel took on the job and has been making changes to keep the organization up to date.  The big drive is still membership - from 1905 to the 1990s growth was steady but it topped out at 1.2 million and has stayed there despite the fact that 1.2 million new members have been inducted.  But other efforts include streamlining the organization and incorporating technology, combining the administration of RI and the Foundation, developing a new website and logo and rebranding.  This has created a lot of notice - if you want to get emails, change something, he says.

RI is concentrating on its strengths - its worldwide reach, its membership with its strong individual commitment and its partnerships.  It is trying to address its weaknesses - its lack of recognition and public image and the fact that the message is not consistent.  RI wants to join leaders in the community to strengthen partnerships, to exchange ideas and to take action.  RI is a major humanitarian force because of the work that's done at the Club level.  There is a relationship with the United Nations but it is the membership that makes that work. 

Bryn admitted that the Polio numbers look bad but in the endemic countries - Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria - the numbers are dropping and the outbreaks elsewhere can be tracked and controlled.  Bill and Melinda Gates have agreed to matche - 2 for 1 - our 35 million over the next two years.  There's still a way to go but it's close.

Next week we recognize the veterans - heroes who fought so we could have freedom of choice - but we are seeing new heroes - those who fight against mass killers of the most vulnerable.  Poor water and sanitation, illiteracy and poor education, poverty.  It's incomprehensible to us that 800 million live with no water that that people spend hundreds of hours a month finding it.  More people have cell phones that toilets.  Diarrhoea takes up 12% of health budgets in Africa.  Every 20 seconds a child dies because of poor sanitation.

800 million lack education opportunities and are illiterate.  If a mother is literate, the child has a 50% better chance of survival.  Rotary started helping a school in Jalalabad.  It had no buildings, took boys only.  Now 4,000 go, half of them girls, all funded by Canadian Rotary. 

Hunger connects it all.  1 in 8 go hungry, 1.5 million children a year.  The better educated and employed the woman in the family is, the better everybodies' chances.

We do have problems here in Canada and the Foundation does help there too.  It gives us the tools to work on the chinks in the armour of these killers and by focusing on successes we can help children grow up to work for peace and conflict resolution.  We can't turn our backs - it's not my child, it's not my community - it is our world and those who help fight these problems are heroes.  The Foundation can make these heroes more effective.  We have accomplished a lot but there is more to do.  We are seeing natural disasters here and we got help from around the world.  We have to put ourselves in their shoes - how would we react to being flooded out and loosing everything?  Our lives are fragile and any of us might need help.

Bryn thanked the Club for its many contributions.  

RI Director Bryn Styles Bill Molesworth 2013-11-06 00:00:00Z 0

St t's mission to Kenya

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 29, 2013

Bill Richardson was pleased to be able to introduce three amazing students from St. T's who will be part of a contingent of 21 seniors and 3 teachers going to Kenya next spring.  The cost to each student will be about $4,000.00 and they are doing fundraising for that by selling wreaths and other efforts.  But they are also raising funds to buy supplies for those they are going to be with while there - school, medical, sports supplies and more.

Emily, Colin and Grace played a brief video introducing the Club to the rural part of Kenya they plan to visit and featuring kids there who were asking for support while they work to improve their lives.  They are not looking for charity but for a hand up.  The three say they see this trip as an opportunity to help and to learn about another country and its culture.  They will be associated with the Free the Children organization and will study social justice, the effect of colonialism and human rights issues at school before they go.  They will be living with Masai in rural villages.  They are asking for $5,000.00 from the club to help purchase the supplies they want to take.  They leave May 4th.

St t's mission to Kenya Bill Molesworth 2013-10-30 00:00:00Z 0

Rotary Exchange with Jamie and Phil

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 22, 2013

Jamie explained that the exchange program is designed as a cultural and academic exchange  that gives participants the opportunity to learn the language and culture of another country.  They act as cultural ambassadors while experiencing personal development and learning leadership and independence. 

If we, as a Club, want to send a student abroad, we have to take one.  The locales are arranged at District - the Clubs don't select destinations.  As a host Club we look for three host families who take the student for 3 months each.

Phil said he was in the recruitment stage for the next outbound while the inbound would arrive, at the latest, by September.  Atte came in August.  At the start of the school year Phil goes to his contacts at the schools' guidance offices and gets help from current exchange students because their experiences, as told to others, helps sell the program.  Once a list of candidates is compiled, Ralph and his committee interview them, leading them through a long list of questions.  Alison is on the District Committee which reviews candidates for detail on their academic, medical and personal lives.

The Program includes some group activities, especially the Matawa weekend in Feb. when the kids are exposed to a wilderness experience - spending the day outdoors.  That can be a surprise for the South Americans or young ladies from Thailand.  They also have a weekend in May when they go to Ottawa and they are all together at least 4 times during the year.  The friendships and networks they make last a lifetime.

In May the inbound student information is sent to the host Club and a commitment is expected that the Club will find host families and keep the student safe.  Midland is now finding some host families from outside the Club which makes it easier but the students are placed with Club families first because the connection to Rotary is important.

Jamie congratulated Phil for his contributions on outside recruitment and changing the Counsel position a bit.  A good counsellor is important but the potential for conflict exists - if a student has a difficult time fitting in at a host's house and the host is a friend of the counsellor allegiances can be stretched, so Phil has recruited a counsellor from outside the Club this year.

The Club has had challenges getting host families some years but it's not hard to qualify and the rewards are huge for Club members and their families.  It's important for the student to know in advance that he will be taken care of.  As hosts it's not necessary to have kids - Samantha's first host was a widow and they went to the horse races together and her second was a family with two kids but they were off at university.  One of them had been an exchange student of the Tripp's 8 years ago.

Atte is looking to experience Canada through sports - leafs and raptors, fishing, visiting the CN Tower and Niagara Falls, maybe try golf and seeing a group called Macklemore.  But there are all sorts of things we could all think of that he might not so simply call him up and just go the Marsh or to dinner.  They will remember this year for the experiences and you will make a friend.  They need their own room, a friendly environment and a way to get to school but the buses cover most places.

Extras like special trips are usually planned in advance and the students real family will have made plans.  The host family receives a stipent of $300.00/month and the student gets an allowance of $125.00.  If you have an idea, discuss it with Phil or Jamie.  Remember the 4 D's, though - no Drinking, Driving, Dating or Drugs.

Rotary Exchange with Jamie and Phil Bill Molesworth 2013-10-23 00:00:00Z 0

Asst. DG George Dangerfield

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 15, 2013

Joyce said George had worked in leasing and with Hertz but moved to Georgian College and travelled on their behalf for the International Centre.  He has helped with fund raising for the McLauchlen Gallery and the Y.  He has been a charter member of one Club in Barrie, the Charter President of another and a member of a third.  He has a PH from each of them.  He's been married to Sharon for 42 years and is now taking on the role of Assistant DG for region 6 of our District and is proud to wear a jacket with his jeans and happy to see that Lister has turned up somewher after being thrown out of Barrie.

Rotary works on three levels - RI deals with the global and the Foundation and he is happy that we have Bryn Styles representing us as an RI Director, on the District level and we, of course, are in 7010 which is huge going from Collingwood to Val d'Or in Quebec and Marilyn Hanson is our current President working with 44 Clubs and 15,500 members, and at the Club level and the Midland Club is in Area 6 of out District.  Being an Asst. DG is a three year assignement and involves helping Clubs achieve their goals and maintain their relationship with the District.  As of now all reporting is on line, which makes things easier and will make it possible, in years to come, to compare  activities year over year.

George said he has had different perspectives of Rotary.  As a charter member of the Huronia Club in 1976 at eh age of 28 he was young and enthusiastic and involved and he made friends .  Helping to start the Breakfast Rotary Club in 1996 when he was a little older made him realize that the energy and enthusiasm was passing to the next generation and we need to keep bringing in young people to keep moving forward. 

Rotary has stayed at the same membership for several years now, locked in at 1.2 million.  People are leaving as fast as they are joining.  We need to encourage people to stay, to engage with Rotary and to continue to change lives - both those of the less fortunate that we try to help and our own as we get out of Rotary what we put in.

His father was in Kiwanis but they never approached him, it was Rotary that did.  We have to make the approach, make sure the program works for them and, as we evolve, make changes to accommodate different groups and objectives.  We have to keep reviewing our practices, react to changes and the stresses of modern life.  Qualifications for membership have changed in the last several decades - the focus on business ownership is less, for example - and people who have maybe less flexible schedules may be interested in joining but have to be accommodated so they don't burn out.  We have to let them contribute what they can as they balance work, family and Rotary.  Every member invite someone to lunch every year and, even if they don't join, the word will spread.

Polio Plus is still dealing with challenges.  Bill and Melinda Gates have made a matching commitment of $2 for every $1 up to 35 million a year to 2018.  So far we've raised 5.5 billion and still need probably another 1.5.  Australia is considering a significant contribution. 

Rotary's grant structure has been revised and put on line.  Matching grants have been phased out to be replaced with District Grants, Global Grants and Package Grants.

Next September 18 will see the Conference in Val d'Or and George wants to see a bunch of people from Area 6 joining him to visit this part of the District. 

George said he'd attended a Board meeting and our lunch meeting and complimented the Club on its vibrancy and its hard work and encouraged the membership to keep it up.

Asst. DG George Dangerfield Bill Molesworth 2013-10-16 00:00:00Z 0

The Wye Marsh - Sarah Street

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 08, 2013

I had the pleasure of introducing Sarah, the Director of the Marsh.  She was raised on a farm in Brechin and learned to love animals there so she studied zoology at Guelph graduating with a B.SC honours.  She completed an Ecosystem Management Technology Diploma from Sandford Fleming as well.  She volunteered at the Marsh, participating in banding efforts and taking on more responsibility, becoming an employee and now is Director.

Sarah said her family used to come from Brechin when she was young so her memories go back.  The Friends of the Marsh were formed in 1983 when the government reduced and eliminated funding.  The CWF own the buildings and lease it to the Marsh for $1.00 a year.  The not for profit Board took over the management in 1985.  They receive no government funds other than specific grants.  There are 7 FTEs working there maintaining 3,000 acres and welcoming 60,000 visitors.  Although she admits this number seems small in comparison with, say, the African Lion park that had half a million she thinks that as a National Wildlife Area, a Provincial Wetland and bird refuge and an area of significant National and Scientific interest that the Marsh is contributing to our ecology and our scientific understanding.  The NWA is only about 100 acres of the total, the rest falls under Provincial oversight.

Recently the Marsh has been able to construct a new bird porch, with help from Rotary, that provides daytime housing; it is working on a plan to rejuvenate the display hall; it is working on a new Strategic Plan; it is introducing a point of sale system with the help of a grant and it has recently been accredited by CAZA - Canada's Zoos and Aquariums.

The primary focus is education through school programs, scout and guide badge programs and appealing to the general public with its canoe and kayak tours.  Funding comes from donations, membership sales and tourism.  The swans and other wildlife are a draw and the Boardwalk is a bonus for ease of access, etc.  Volunteers are a big part of what happens there.

The Board is responsible for the stewardship and is conducting a turtle research project with some tagging, the breeding program with the swans focusing on nest locations and migratory paths, the hummingbird tagging project (the opposite of tagging swans) and promoting and protecting a large variety of other fauna and a lot of flora.  There they are mostly involved in fighting invasive plants.

Rare occupants of the marsh include the Least Bittern, the Tall White Bog Orchard, the Snapping Turtle, the Blandings Turtle, the Eastern Milk Snake, the Eastern Hog Nose Snake which can play dead, the Map Turtle and the Stinkpot Turtle though that has not been seen for 30 years.  The Marsh is evolving - in 1971 Mud Lake was 310 acres and at the turn of the century it was down to 4.  Cattails are closing it in, which is natural evolution, but are doing it faster than expected due, maybe, to mitigating changes in evolution or climate.  Sarah and her team are trying to mitigate the rate of change and enhance and care for the marsh in a way that maintains or even improves it for future generations.  In 2010 they approved a stewardship plan but they have not yeat realized all the goals.  Some will be continued in the new plan being written now.

To raise funds they hold special events like Sweetwater, Christmas Santa and Marsh Monsters; they invite sponsorships to fund specific animals or programs; they have been very grateful for Bob Whittam's book and its success has been welcome - they are even thinking about having another print run. The 400 they have left they hope to sell for Christmas.

The MPAC assessment is being appealed and an exemption is being sought.  And the dam was actually a Ducks Unlimited project working on a 99 year lease and they do the maintenance on that.  Fred congratulated the Marsh on surviving for 30 years and Britt thanked Sarah for her presentation.

The Wye Marsh - Sarah Street Bill Molesworth 2013-10-09 00:00:00Z 0

Welcome new members

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 01, 2013

Dave introduced Tony Orecchio as a past member of Rotary - 4 years in Penetang, serving there as President and 3 in Lindsay - but new to our Club.  He grew up in Whitby, one of 7 children and may have played rugby against Jamie Tripp.  He went to Laurentian and then spent 17 years with TD, moving around a bit.  He took a break from banking and worked in real estate for a while but missed the Georgian Bay and joined the BMO and is now commercial account manager.  He and Nancy have 2 children and 3 grandchildren.

Arnie declared this a joyous occasion, introducing his oldest son to the Rotary family.  John grew up here, went to St. Andrews and spent quite some time at Western but when he came back to Midland he had decided to start a construction company and though his father expressed reservations John said just watch and he did it on his own.  John is the third generation Rotarian - his grandfather was a member in Toronto and a President.  John is married to Natalie and they have one son.

Fred Hacker said it is a special occasion for John and Tony to be admitted to an effective association that promotes and exhibits the qualities of leadership in head and heart.  It is special for the rest of the Club as well as it gives us the opportunity to refresh our understanding of what it means and to renew our commitment to the organization and to our duty to encourage, support and inspire new members.  We extend the spirit of community to Tony and John.

Ours is not a political organization - it promotes citizenship.  It is not a charity - it assumes a responsibility to help others.  It is not religious - but it professes eternal principles and moral standards.  It is a group of business people uniting under the banner of service.  The life of the organization comes from its members and new life comes from the introduction of new members.

The motto of Service Above Self encourages and fosters the idea of service, it promotes ethical standards and it embraces the worthiness of all occupations as providing an opportunity to serve and to advance international understanding and world fellowship.  In all things we apply the 4 way test because members of Rotary are judged by their behaviour and members act as ambassadors of Rotary in the world with the 1.2 million other members of the 34,000 clubs in the 530 Districts around the world.  The Midland Club welcomes Tony and John to the fellowship of Rotary and encourages them to use their enthusiasm and abilities to help make the world a better place.  We invite them to join but it is each member who makes themselves a Rotarian.

The obligations of Rotary are to attend, to pay the dues and to take part by joining in projects and serving on Committees.  Only busy people are eligible and although there is much to give, much is received as we commit to make John and Tony feel welcome.  We know our principles are safe in the hands of these newest members of Rotary and we extend the hand of fellowship to Rotary's newest members.

John thanked his father and his Uncle Fred and said that his joining is not a revolutionary event, he feels he's been part of Rotary all his life and has observed the rewards of membershiop.  He felt the room  was full of large shadows - a room of success and commitment and charity and he hopes to get to know all the members better and to grow with the Club.  Tony said the welcome he'd received here was overwhelming and that meant a lot to him.  He suggested a good way to realize what a great community we have here is to live somewhere else for a while so he is glad to be here and to be a new part of Rotary and he looks forward to contributing.

Welcome new members Bill Molesworth 2013-10-02 00:00:00Z 0

Mike Osborne's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 24, 2013

Jamie Tripp was supposed to introduce Mike but got off on a tangent that I lost the thread of completely so - here's Mikey.

Mike was born in Powassan which is near North Bay.  He's married with a daughter working with Community Living and a son whose a Police Officer.  He started his career as an auxiliary in Listowel, moved to Kirkland Lake and came to Midland when the Chief there took over here.  He's been an instructor at Georgian College, a Training Sgt., a Det. Sgt. and the Inspector under Paul Hamelin.  He's been the Chief since 2009.  He continues to upgrade through studies at Guelph, Police Colleges and with the OPP and the RCMP.  Training is an important part of every officer's career.

Mike has been the recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal, the Queens Diamond Jubilee pin and is a Premier's Award Nominee at Georgian, among many other awards and titles.  He also belongs to all sorts of Associations and is currently the VP of OACP and Chair of OPTIC which is the infor and records management system for most Services.  He works with charities including serving on the Boards of Child Services and Minor Hockey and taste testing 32 butter tarts, working on the Torch Run, doing car washes and playing baseball with Community Living.

As Chief he is connected with and partnering with many community groups along with several of his officers so that the public gets to know the many faces of the force.  And there is an auxiliary group which makes for a great introduction to policing as a career in Midland or with other Services.  He says the Service works in partnership to help provide quality of life.

He emphasises prevention through proactive efforts like RIDE and by analysing and understanding socio economic forces that drive much crime.  He supports the victimised through efforts like Out of the Cold and the Outreach program which have, he says, contributed to a 20% drop in the crime rate.  A good community includes the police.  There will be a meeting co sponsored by the Service and the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services on Oct. 10 at 7:00 pm at the Sports Centre and he invited everybody to come out to talk about what's good and what could be better.  They will talk about striking an advisory committee and he's open to volunteers.

Finally, he's a Bruins fan.  Don't these people get vetted before they're invited to join?

Jamie asked about graffiti and Mike said that education of the parents is important, then painting over before it becomes competitive.  Every victim wall has to be done - can't have one done and not the rest.  On making the case, the graffiti artists become victims of their own boasting as they can sometimes be tracked through their social media accounts.

Has the cost of policing gone up since Waypoint arrived?  Anecdotally it seems so but Mike says crime has been decreasing since 1991, though calls for the service are up.  It is the case that those released come here because we have the apartments so there is an impact and Midland has to be careful that the right supports are provided.  The Midland Service adopted a culture of tolerance under Paul and through training and long experience the force has only once had recourse to lethal force with someone who had a history of behaviours and, though he had been calmed before, it failed in this instance.  Mike thinks the force can claim a level of success due to this time spent on site and its familiarity with the community.

Britt thanked Mike for joining the Club and agreeing to take on a co-ordinating role with Bingo.

Mike Osborne's Classification Bill Molesworth 2013-09-25 00:00:00Z 0

Club Assembly

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 20, 2013

Britt had the final number from Ralph for this year's POD - $73,740.00.  Congratulations.

She asked Dave to start off with Community Services.  He says they've got a budget of $125,000.00 but $50,000.00 is already committed to the Trauma Centre and $25,000.00 for the Trials.  There is a $3,000.00 amount pre-approved a while ago for a dictionary give away but he wondered if that was still the way to go.  The Club is hosting the Tall Ships Captains' Dinner and a few Rotarians will be joining him to welcome the crews.  He is anticipating requests for help from the Guesthouse and from Wendat's new Seniors' Home, though they have been doing a great job of fundraising already.  His Committee is facing the problem of individual hardship requests.  They all sound like they need help but someone has to do due diligence and that's time consuming.  Penetang has stopped taking them and the Salvation Army no longer wants to operate under the grant system that was used for a few years.  They will review the problem.  They are also still looking at the idea of an Incubator Project that was suggested during the Signature Project discussions.

Bill R. is Chair of International - budget $50,000.00.  The Committee is looking at International's Areas of Focus - peace, disease, water, maternal, education and economic and community development so they are committing again to Polio Plus and to a follow up on the HART III trip.  Projects promoting self sufficiency in Africa, Aboriginal concerns, providing clean water, the Life 4 Kids orphanage and, perhaps, working towards another mission in 2015.

Jamie Tripp said one focus of Vocational will be starting Interact clubs at the schools while maintaining the Vocational projects and special trips.  He wants to see more vicational visits to local businesses and Group Study support.

Joyce is the new Foundation Chair and says this year will be a year of education with a goal of an annual program.  This Board will continue to donate $100.00 to Polio Plus in the name of our speakers.  She is encouraging people to become Bequestors - more than $10,000.00 left in the will - or Benefactors - up to 10.  As well she hopes to see every Rotarian every year with an average donation of $175.00.  Every new member will be asked to donate $10.00 to get them started in the tradition we hope they will continue in. 

Robim Wells is the Club Service Chair but was unfortunately absent.  Britt said there will be a boat in and she has since sent information on that out so that should be fun.

Mora is going to get all sorts of new members for us this year.  She says we've dropped for 50 to 44 since 2009 and she wants us back up to 50.  There will be a lot of PR, starting with the billboard and including radio, the new website and direct mail.  Each current member has to be involved, we are all ambassadors for the Club and we should be encouraging people to help us do some good.

Alison is leading PR with a budget of $5,000.00, 2 of which has gone to the billboard and the rest will be spent on media.  There will be more Press Releases and an emphasis on social media so check out the facebook page and like it, comment on it and share in on your wall.  It will all help to increase the Club's reach.

Britt thanked the Chairs, said it was a great Board, a motivated group and there's more to come.   

Club Assembly Bill Molesworth 2013-08-21 00:00:00Z 0

A Hong Kong Rotarian

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 13, 2013

Jamie Tripp welcomed Darren Todd back to Midland - he grew up and went to school here.  Darren went on the the U of Waterloo and Queen's and then worked as an Assistant Curator at Ste. Marie, at the OPP Museum and as a teacher in Columbia, on Baffin Island and at the Delia School of Canada in Hong Kong where he also plays in the Pipe and Drum band. 

Darren brought greetings from District 3450 which covers 63 clubs from HK to Mongolia.  He's been a member of the Quarry Bay Club for 3 years and is still adjusting to different ways of doing things - it pays to sit and listen for a while.  The first Club in mainland China was recently chartered.  Hong Kong is a special administrative region which stll follows the British court and legislation systems introduced when it was a colony but Big Brother certainly exists and recent tensions have resulted in Chinese warships visiting - though the US fleet shows up too.  Chinese soldiers are stationed in HK.  Canada has strong ties there - it was mostly Canadian troops that were trapped there by the Japanese invasion and they are honoured during the HK Remembrance Day - and many residents have family in Canada.  Canadians make up the second largest group of expats - 100,000.

HK is a group of islands plus the New Territories which is on the mainland and acts as a hub for trade, shipping and finance.  There isn't much manufacturing but there are a lot of deals made.  There is growing competition from Vietnam and Singapore but the harbour and the new airport are excellent and encourage traffic.  7 million people live in 425 sq. miles.  In comparison, 6 million live in the GTA which encompases 7,125 sq. miles.  It's a community of villages, each with its own customs and traditions.  The Pipe and Drum band he's joined has only 2 expats - him and a lawyer from Edinburgh - and his Chinese colleagues encourage eating out a lot and joining in local festivals, especially the Harvest Festival which involves a 30 metre dragon covered in incense over 3 nights. 

His Rotary Club is the smallest in HK with only 9 members and they pride themselves on their hands on projects.  They are a diverse group but being small they can meet or email and come to a decision quickly.  Their long term project is to try to rehabilitate a centre for challenged adults.  They do most of the maintenance, buying the materials - lots and lots of paint - and supplying the labour.  As the school Darren teaches at works on the Ontario curriculum the students are also required to do 40 hours of volunteer work and he arranged to have many of them help the Club.  Over 120 students take part of the 8 months and they often find that they enjoy it.  Being the children of privilege many of them have never worked with their hands and have to start from scratch but it is a great experience for them.  They also meet the residents of the facility which is an education for them.

The other project is to support other Clubs in the District which have been helping a group of villages, 9 of them, in Szechuan which were constructed to house lepers and which have become leper ghettos.  Leprosy is now curable and it is not contagious and the incidence of the disease is declining so the focus of the Clubs now is encouraging good hygience, nutrition, sustainable trades and the provision of prosthetics.  They sell the food they grow to buy other necessities but leave themselves short and so they suffer from malnutrition.  Darren distributed examples of needlework the Clubs are trying to develop a market for.  He also presented the Club with a banner from Quarry Bay.

Next week is a Club Assembly.  There will be some assignments to Committees - consider if you'd like to join one. 

A Hong Kong Rotarian Bill Molesworth 2013-08-14 00:00:00Z 0

RVH Update

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 06, 2013

Ron introduced Eric Dean as an active member of Rotary who was on the executive of the Lindsay Club and served as President and was made a PH and is nowith a Barrie club and involved in Youth Exchange at the District level.  He's been the CEO of the RVH Foundation since 2010. Previously he served for 4 years at the Hospital Foundation in Ottawa where he led a 35 million capital campaign, 3 years at the Canadian Blood Service and several years at the Lindsay hospital.  He is a member of several professional associations.

Eric said they have been making a lot of progress at the hospital and he wanted to bring the Club, as major supporters, up to speed on what's happening.  The Simcoe Muskoka Regional Cancer Centre is now receiving 3,000 new cases a year and the rate is expected to increase as the population ages and as diagnostics continue to improve.  Over 7 years the 13 Rotary Clubs in the area have contributed 1.5 million, 4 Chairs of the Board and 5 Chairs of the Foundation have been Rotarians and there has been ongoing Club and individual support.  Total cost was 430 million, including 69 million for equipment, all of which was funded locally.  The new facility has 101 more beds and has space shelled in for future expansions which will cut costs later.  Two new operating theatres will be operating by fall and with them will come more specialists.  The hospital has hired 600 new people and another 1,200 have moved into new positions.

Rotary House is functioning, linked to the hospital by a tunnel, and provides family medicine and there is a teaching unit and a clinic.  It houses mostly radiation patients that are receiving daily treatments and has accommodated patients from all over, though the most have come from Huntsville because it's the furthest away.  The building also houses administration functions so the more expensive hospital space can be used for hospital functions.  9 students a year take placements there and on average so far, about 5 of them stay.

Aug. 16 will be Rotary House's first anniversary and it has had 519 guests overnight, including two from Midland for 5 nights and they expect it will be busier in the winter when the driving becomes harder.  12 people from Huntsville have stayed a total of 222 nights.  The facility reduces stress in patients and family members by 90% which encourages healing.  As most treatments only last 15 minutes and the drive can take up to two hours, having a place to stay is obviously huge for people.

Eric took us on a photo tour which included a shot out the window of the Tim Horton's and Gilda's Club which Midland Rotary also supported.  Gilda's offers more group and psychological support.

The Cancer Centre itself has received over 72,000 visits which is more than anticipated but less than they can handle.  Having the Centre in Barrie has saved people 5,000 trips to Toronto for a million kilometres and 15,000 hours saved. 

Eric said it was great the Club has supported the RVH but went on to say that he knew it was a big help to GBGH as well and that that is very important.  The better equiped the local hospital is, the better care they can provide which reduces the burden on the Regional one and then a well equipped Regional hospital reduces the load on the City ones, so he encouraged us to continue to assist locally.

The RVH is working on establishing and Interventional Cardiology centre as well.  Heart patients now are sent to Newmarket.  And they would like to have a Child and Youth Mental Health service because Waypoint has no inpatient option for younger people and they have to go to Southlake but it is always full son they have to make trips to the city twice a week.  With an inpatient program they can recruit a psychologist and team to develop an outpatient service locally.  And a proposal is being pursued for a pan regional gynecological cancer surgery centre.  The space and equipment are in place.

Terri thanked Eric for coming and presented him with his polio plus certificate.

RVH Update Bill Molesworth 2013-08-07 00:00:00Z 0

Elephant Thoughts

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 30, 2013

Ron introduced Lisa Farana, a member of the Collingwood Rotary Club, founder and director of Elephant Thoughts, 2008 YMCA Peace Medallion recipient and a camping, skiing and travel enthusiast.

Elephant Thoughts is a Global Development organization and First Nations Educational Foundation that started in 2001 with teachers promoting education in underprivileged areas that has grown from2 volunteers to 80 doing what they can to educate young children in a fair and equal way.  Currently they are working in India, Tanzania and in First Nations communities in Canada.  The first mission was in India, supported by Rotary, and tried to promote cultural understanding, the breaking down of barriers, the raising of standards of living and a sustainable environment.  As it grew older children started teaching the younger ones, mentoring and encouraging.

There are always difficulties.  In one location some land was donated for building a school but it was near a pig farm and many teachers didn't want to work there.  So should they move the pig farm?  In another community a rivalry between tribes complicated the project and ended up with competing programming.  But the reward for helping is massive - people are so appreciative.  In the Himalayas they are taking a Library up to the villages to promote reading and other programs and the enthusiasm is palpable.

In the First Nations most of the effort goes to building trust.  They lost control of their education under the residential school system and their schools are still underfunded in comparison with the rest of the country so even with AFN support it takes a while.  In 1920 the then Superintendent of Indian Affairs declared that it was the government's aim to eliminate all the Indians in the country.  That attitude lingers and the current population has to struggle against it.

Elephant Thoughts programs are now accepted in several communities and word of mouth assits the spread.  They sponsor science camps in the summer to maintain interest and are working to provide a presence year round. 

The First Nations population grew by 20% over the last census while the rest of the country increased by only 5.2%.  The vast majority of this young population is unemployed - about 400,000 people which translates to over 10 billion dollars in lost productivity.  We need to help these kids through High School and on.  In the areas they are working graduation rates have risen from zero to 30%.  The organization is recognized by the Martin Aboriginal Initiatives organization and the Conner Canadian Foundation.

Lorne Kenney said there are schools in our own area code that are in aging portables because the original building has been condemned.  Third world conditions.  As Chair of the District Aboriginal Committee he is encouraging District Clubs to join the ARCC (Aboriginal Rotary Community Circle).  Other Districts are considering joining and potentially supplying programs in Ontario, to start, and then spreading across Canada.  Matching grants can help make this even more effective.

Funding goes to service delivery, none of it is delivered to people on the ground, the organization is apolitical.

Elephant Thoughts Bill Molesworth 2013-07-31 00:00:00Z 0

District Governor Marilyn Hanson

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 23, 2013

Joyce introduced Marilyn as a member of the Orillia Club who has held many positions there - Treasurer for 4 years, President in 2007-08, Membership Chair who brought in 10 new members a year over her several terms - and who has received many awards including a Paul Harris, an Avenue of Service and RI Recognition.  She was Assistant Governor for 3 years.  She is retired from her accounting business, sits on the Board of the Greenhaven Shelter for Women and trains and shows Border Collies.

Marilyn said she wanted to tell her Rotary story because it helped to illustrate aspects of the organization and its workings.  Back when she was manager of the Orillia Community Development she spoke to Rotary a couple of times but had no insight into what it was or what it represented - perhaps it was some kind of cult?  So her first experience indicates that a visitor to Rotary needs to be introduced to it.  But when she was working on a conference a Rotarian took on a paid position but turned around upon completion and had the money donated to the Foundation so she learned about what the Foundation was and what Polio Plus was trying to do.

She opened an Accounting Firm and was asked to join but she was too busy in her new career.  She was asked again later but was too busy expanding her company.  When she was asked the third time she was ready and she says the lesson is not to quit on a candidate - keep trying.  She is as concerned as everyone about recruiting new members but she pointed out that when she joined there were 1.2 million members.  Since then over one million new members have joined and the total membership is now 1.2 million.  She wants individual Clubs to recruit, of course, but she thinks we have a retention problem and she suggests striking a Retention Chair to keep members involved and committed.  She's going to post some graphs on the website to track progress.

In response to a survey most older people questioned said the first thing they thought of about Rotary was fellowship but younger people thought of doing something important and developing leadership skills.  We need to bring those young people in and get them involved.  Or, bring them in and let them go off in a new direction.  Don't try to make them fit our mould.

She worked on a Friendship exchange that brought people from Brazil to Orillia and she enjoyed it but it was when she went to Brazil that she became a Rotarian - when she saw what real poverty looked like and how much any donation can help and how much they appreciate the help.  She went to South Africa and had many more Rotary moments there.  Then to Ecuador on a wheelchair delivery and she is joining another to Jamaica in January.  These trips are emotional but the hands on aspect give you that Rotary feeling.

The District Conference will be at the Fern Resort on Oct. 26 and the Governor's Ball will be at Casino Rama so be sure to set that date aside.

Marilyn showed us the organization chart of the District and it's a lot more complicated than you'd think - 75 people and that's not all the Committee members so it's a big job and a big organization and maybe some members might like to help - the Youth Exchange Committee is a major commitment with several weekend trips and they could use some help.

She encourages us all to Engage Rotary - Change Lives.  The life you will change the most will be your own.

District Governor Marilyn Hanson Bill Molesworth 2013-07-24 00:00:00Z 0

Huronia Foundation for the Arts

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 16, 2013

Ken Albrough is a retired business professional and currently works with the C of C and as Financial Director of the HFA, of which he is a founding member.  Linda Hillman is the office manager of the Foundation and Larry French, also retired from business and a musician is the President. 

Ken started by saying that the Foundation actually covers northern Huronia and southern Muskoka.  In 2006 Lucille Robitaille spearheaded efforts to form an Arts Council and held monthly meetings a peoples' houses but they were struggling till Gord McKay helped them lead a planning exercise that resulted in a newsletter, a web site and a commitment to sponsor a keynote event.  They incorporated in 2008 and successfully applied for $60,000.00 from Trillium over 3 years that paid for an office manager and etc.  They have applied again and are hopeful that a $73,000.00 grant will be announced soon to expand the Winterfest and Artwalk events and to retain Linda's services.

Larry said the Foundation is run mostly by a committed core of workers.  The Board is made up of artists and is a hub dedicated by and for artists from Elmvale over to Price's Corner and up to MacTier.  The organization showcases events through partnerships with the MCC and the NSSRC with site links to arts and culture in the area so it brings the arts to consumers.

They publish the Directory which is a definitive listing of artists and events.  They sponsor the Artwalk, which this year will be on Aug. 17 and whilch will include a classic car parade, several stages with live music and readings and many displays and food outlets.  It's on the Sat. of the Tug Fest weekend so they anticipate as many as 5,000 people will be in the downtown so they are partnering with the BIA and are advertising down to Toronto.

They are working on a gala which will be 'unlike any you have seen' and will be at the MCC in November - announcements will be made soon.  Winterfest will be growing again this year and they are looking to draw on the experience of Barrie for a local Arts Excellence program.  They are working on the Committee that's developing the Cultural Map of Midland and are hoping that will help define Midland and area as an arts destination.  They take part in Festivals all over the area - most recently the Festival du Loup and the Buttertart event.  Every Wed. this summer there is an art display at the dock during the afternoon and a music event in the evening. 

They are at 300 members now and are continuing to grow - $20.00 for seniors and $30.00 for the rest.  They sell advertising in the directory which is distributed through the newspaper and is in every hotel. 


Huronia Foundation for the Arts Bill Molesworth 2013-07-17 00:00:00Z 0

Amanda Woodman's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 11, 2013

Ron introduced Amanda, the General Manager of the Free Press and a Rotarian for 11 months.

Amanda said she wasn't fond of public speaking, as evidenced by the 11 month delay in presenting but that she has been very happy as part of Rotary, saying it is a fantastic experience and that she admires the club and its members.  She thanked yours truly for inviting her to her first few meetings and Bill R. for encouraging her to participate in HART III, a life changing experience.

She was born in Orillia 29 years ago and has a brother 8 years older.  She now lives in Port McNicoll with Jamie and Shadow, her boyfriend and dog, respectively.  She showed us some pictures and it appears she had a difficult time throught school - braces, glasses and scoliosis or curvature of the spine.  In gr. 9 she had an operation and then had to wear a back brace for 6 months which meant track suits everyday to cover it.  She got trapped by the brace in a school desk and had to be pried out.  On top of it all, or maybe because of it all, she scored poor marks and ended high school with no sense of what she wanted to do. 

Opening a book of careers shes stumbled on advertising, which need no prerequisite and she got accepted to Loyalist in Belleville and it turned out she is good at it and enjoys it.  She liked the teachers and won an award.  Having spent her last dime on clothes and parties she had to go home and look for an internship and she found one at the Packet and Times and on the last day of her placement someone quit and she got the job.

She worked there for 7 years doing everything - primarily a sales rep she covered other positions which was a terrific learning experience and when the boss took time off she covered that position too so when the position here opened up she was offered it and moved here 2 years ago.

The paper has an average circulation of 20,500 with 6 staff and two freelancers.  It's printed in Islington on the Sun's presses which lets them put colour on every page.  Distribution is the hardest part and she has led a shift from bagging the papers and throwing them in the general neighbourhood of a house to door delivery.  They have introduced a new web site that gets 30,000 visitors, many of them from Toronto keeping an eye on what's going on in cottage country.  She is primarily an administrator but she covers vacancies and has even helped out with deliveries.

She also has responsibility for Regional specials - the inserts that focus on some aspect of life in North Simcoe like the Parks and Rec guides or 100 Things to Do insert.  She assigns the stories, sells the ad space and decides the print run.  The paper is owned by Sun Media which has 42 dailies and 200 weeklies that distribute 15 million copies so she thinks newspapers are still vibrant.

Her off time is spent dicing with death.  Skydiving, surfing, cross fit training and who knows what else but she likes to challenge herself. 

She was asked about the demise of the beat reporter and said that she has 1 full time reporter who is trying to fill the web site and the paper on 40 hours a week and Doug Glynn who covers politics and some special events.  They can't cover everything and they certainly can't dedicate themselves to one subject.

Ron Crane complimented Amanda on the paper and on her many contributions to the Club and for surviving her recreational activities.

Amanda Woodman's Classification Bill Molesworth 2013-06-12 00:00:00Z 0

Garfield Dunlop

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 21, 2013

Ron took a moment to read thank you cards from the Gift of Grace Kitchen and the Coldwater Food Bank who were both very grateful for the large food donations, thanks to the drive.

He introduced Garfield, whose long history of public service started as a councillor in Coldwater and who has been everywhere all the time ever since.  Ron said he felt Garfield made a difference as our representative and he felt it was appreciated.

Garfield said one of the first things you learn at Queen's Park is to talk for quite a while without being familiar with the subject but he would try to keep it a little shorter.  It looks like the NDP will help pass the budget and there won't be an election this spring.  It would have been his 5th, he's been ther 14 years which have gone by so fast.  It takes a lot of effort - he figures he attends 1,000 events a year.  It's sort of a tradition that he and Bruce are carrying on - people know them and, if they appreciate your attendance one year they ask you back while other people are asking you to new events so it grows.

As a plumber in a former life he is one of three people there with a trades background and, as a result, it doesn't register with most as an issue, but Hudak asked him to take on the roll of Skilled Trades and Apprenticeship critic and he's enjoying the change from being critic for Public Safety.  He thinks we may be short 360,000 people in the trades soon - from hairdressers to plumbers.  First, people aren't taking the careers on and second, lots of people will be retiring over the next years.  And there are few efforts being made to replace them.  We have been relying on the temporary foreign worker program but the RBC mess put the clamps on it.  There are people in the pipeline but they can't get here now.  They want to come and they want to work.  He doesn't think the College of Trades is the solution.  Another level of management and bureaucracy when we already have the colleges and apprentice programs in place.

He's been travelling across Ontario meeting with the people involved and he thinks one of the biggest problems is that people, students and their parents, don't recognize the amazing opportunities available in these good paying jobs.  He's compiling suggestions and recommendations that he hopes will become a plank in the next election platform.  He's especially interested in private public partnerships and cited a welding class in Thunder Bay that's equipped completely by local enterprise who promptly hire all the graduates - 61 this year, 20 of whom are aboriginals.  He's been on a road construction site in Sudbury and he was told the only other politicians that showed up were only there to cut a ribbon.  As technology takes over, whether it's computers in cars that need maintenance or sophisticated road equipment, it's more important than ever that operators be trained.  But the schools have to keep up and they need their equipment replaced and their teachers re-invigorated.

20% of those under 24 are unemployed and, though we need the foreign workers, we should be training our own.  We have the facilities at the Colleges, the union training spaces but students don't know about the opportunities that would take them out of the mall and turn them into taxpayers.  Parents are the big hurdle - they think white collar is more prestigious.  He's hoping to create more awareness and move to more productivity.

Ron thanked Garfield and presented his certificate of donation to Polio Plus.

Garfield Dunlop Bill Molesworth 2013-05-22 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 23, 2013

Bill R said that 42 people, Club members, some of their family members and some medical personnel, went to the DR to offer some relief to stateless Haitians there.  They collected thousands of items to distribute, some of which was donated locally but most of which was in the 83 50lb hockey bags they took with them.  800 hygiene packs, worth about $20,000.00 were distributed, 2 chicken coops were constructed, a basketball court was put up, domestic animals were purchased and donated and $15,000.00 was donated.

Bill said the the material things were valuable and needed but other values were brought to the table during the trip.  Friendship, trust, love and hope for them and for the visitors.  Emily Richardson had done a 90 minute presentation which she and Bill edited down to about 10 but it gave a good sense of the place and the team's accomplishments.  They visited 3 villages and a local dump where the poorest pick and compete with cows for food.  Stephanie felt this was the most eye opening - stepping off a bus into the heat, smells and flies and seeing people walking in flip flops or in bare feet who travelled an hour to be there.  She commented on the cheerful, orderly behaviour of the recipients of the hygiene packs and the fact that they could be grateful to god and cheerful in the face of deprivation.  We should be grateful for what we have and she feels they touched her life more than she contributed to theirs.

Bruce and Mike worked on the coops and felt that the, as it was the first such trip he had been on, he saw what people meant when they said life changing.  The people he met were grateful, proud but ignored and he felt that the trip had helped them.  Ralph worked with the dental staff and was amazed by the unbelievable condition of the teeth people had, from sucking on cane all the time.  He saw a 5 year old brought in by a 7 year old.  50 people a day were treated, most with STD's.  He commented that Steve ran the mission on schedule and at one point he and Phil were left when the bus went without them.  It was a lesson which was softened somewhat when Steve sent a vehicle back for them.  Aaron Ledlie said he'd heard the expression 'you can join Rotary but at some point you become a Rotarian' and he felt this experience was that point for him.  He was part of a distribution of food and chickens but the chickens were late because of 'island time' and there was some intensity on the part of those waiting.  Fred said he was asked if he felt safe and generally replied that he didn't even think about it but at one point he accompanied to young children who had arrived at the dental clinic, apparently without guardians, back to their homes and when he felt he had them back safely he realized he was lost in the maze of houses and roads and sewage channels.  Fortunately using his rare language skills he found his way back to the church and from there to the camp.  Roma assisted the dentist using a hand puppet which she spoke to in Spanish and when it obeyed the kids did too. 

Ron said the Club and the Community feel proud of the accomplishments of all the members of the team and he thanked them for their efforts.

Next week the meeting is at the MCC and we will be hearing about the Keewatin and the week after that we are going to visit it for a brown bag lunch.  May the 15 Ploy will present her story.

HART III Bill Molesworth 2013-04-24 00:00:00Z 0

Chief of Police Mike Osborne

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 16, 2013

Mike has a long resume - he's served on the Police Services of Listowel, Elliott Lake and Midland where he was the Inspector of Operations for 8 years.  He's worked with the Criminal Investigations Branch and has trained frontline officers.  He's a member of the Chiefs of Police of Ontario and is the Director of Region 3 and he works with the Sicmoe County Police Authority.  He volunteers extensively and has been recognized with many awards for his achievements.

Mike recognizes that Midland has many challenges - it's a low income, low education area with a high proportion of the population suffering from mental and physical health problems due to our proximity to the jail and mental health centre.  The country as a whole is also experiencing a change in crime trends - the move to cyber crime and our population of seniors are a particular target.  Midland also has a high level of social housing.

Mike says the luck of a person's birth plays a huge role in their development - the better an individual's education, the better off a family is, the less likely they are to commit crimes.  The more literate, the more parental involvement, the better the role models, the better off a child will be throughout its life.

The Midland Service was founded in 1890 and it's aims are to hire caring officers, train the members to respect the public, partner with the community, understand its challenges and respons to concerns while showing pride in its work.  They are under constant pressure to adapt to change and incorporate new technologies.  He says people like the members of Rotary are part of their work.  It's not how many officers there are, it's about the number of people working towards a better community.  Efforts of service clubs, like Rotary and its Party on the Dock not only raise money, they help people change their perspective and fill their time.  Members of the service volunteer at the Party and feel it's an amazing project.

Prevention also plays a role - make an environment that discourages crime through security, alarms and cameras and environmental design, using landscape and lighting to assist oversight.  The Service continually tries to raise awareness through its Lock it or Lose it campaing, public speaking, training store staff and creating a prescription drop off centre to reduce the experimentation that occurs when out of date prescriptions are left lying around.  They recognize the Service has a role in developing youth and helping those with challenges and they are using technologies like social networkds and also a crime plotting software that was written in house by Bill Gordon and which is being adopted by other services.  It has resulted in a modified patrol schedule and offenses have dropped faster than the Provincial average.

The Budget for 2013 is still not finalized and will represent an increase this year but Mike pointed out that the average increase over five years has been 1.675%.

In answer to questions, Mike said that the Outreach program was initially supported by the Police and is very effective in offering insight to the the people on the street.  Rotary's help with supplying T-shirts for youth programs, reducing graffiti etc. is gratefully recognized.  He says there are drugs everywhere but we shouldn't forget that anyone can become addicted, especially to painkillers, and the Service has 2 officers on the problem full times and there is a Community Services officer working in the schools.

Chief of Police Mike Osborne Bill Molesworth 2013-04-17 00:00:00Z 0

Naomi Bell's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 09, 2013

Naomi admits to confusing us - at the moment her name is part time Bell and part time Murray but she's moving to Murray.  She'll let us know.

Naomi's grandparents, who were Jefferies, were from Midland and though she lived with her family further away they always came here for summers so she's got a long history.  Her father was from NB and joined the RCMP out of school.  Her mother was a nursing student and was lifeguarding for the summer at Point Pelee when they met.  She and her sister Anita were born in Toronto but her father lobbied for a transfer to Orillia and they moved to the cottage when Naomi was 11.  She went to MSS and was a camp counsellor in the summers.

She went to the U of Guelph to take Criminal Justice and while she found that interesting she didn't see herself doing it as a career so she switched to Geography and after graduation came back here.  She worked for the Town as a counsellor and for the Early Years Centre and found she enjoyed the recreation aspect of those jobs so she dropped her intention to teach and joined the Y, first on a maternity contract and then moving into other areas.  In 2008 she took on the position of General Manager. 

She actually met Brad Murray 17 years ago but they became more serious over the last 5 years and were recently married.  He's a civilian at the OPP and a volunteer firefighter.  The are keen boaters and give a home to a dog and a cat.

The YMCA is an amazing organization with a long history.  Founded in 1844 in London by 12 men intent to improve the spiritual education of young men.  It grew through the UK and within 10 years was spreading to Europe and then NA and Australia.  The first one in Canada opened in Montreal in 1851 and by 1900 the Y was a presence across the country.  There are now 53 Associations in Canada but many more facilities - the Simcoe-Muskoka Assoc. has 8, with Gravenhurst being the newest.  Altogether it serves over 2 million people in a thousand towns.  Our branch opened in the late 1800's in a storefront at Queen and Dominion, moved to Hugel Ave. in 1900 and to Little Lake Park in 1967.

The Simco-Muskoka Assoc. offers a broad range of services across the district including camps and international services.  It is the largest provider of non-profit child care in the area, with 3,800 spaces.  There are 3 licensed operations in Midland run by the Y including the one at MSS.  The Midland branch offers employment services, one of three in the District to do so, along with Huntsville and Parry Sound.  Job search services, mentoring. placement and financial assistance are offered to potential employees and job creation and subsidies are offered to employers.  Youth Services for our area are run through outreach out of Barrie.  Youth Quest teaches employment skills, offers an internship program and helps youth start companies - 20 of which were created last summer.  The Y Marketplace helps them develop and sell a product and continues to support budding entrepreneurs over a longer term.  Newcomers services are also Barrie based but staff come here to offer language training and the courses are always full.

Camp Kitchi resonates with all long term residents.  It's been operating for 90 years and serves kids of all ages, working to develop spirit, mind and body.  Naomi is a third generation camper there.  There is also Geneva Park on Lake Couchiching.  150 acres with a long waterfront it is still evolving its services but currently focuses on youth leadership, family programs, conferences and staff training.

The Midland Y has formed a partnership with the one in Sierra Leone and is trying to help them recover from the Civil War that raged there for years by training workers, teaching about HIV and exchanging staff and youth to teach about the different cultures and needs.

Our Y has gone through many changes - it used to just hand out keys for people who wanted to start before the staff got there.  It's been renovated a couple of times, most recently in 2005 - 2007 and is now 40,000 sq. ft. and houses a gym, 5 change rooms, a pool, training equipment, a track, a racketball court and the child care spaces.  There are 3,300 members of which about 60% are adults.

The Strong Kids campaign  operates from the assumption that every kid deserves a chance and offers access and financial support to 850 families and individuals which Naomi feels is a very important contribution to the community.  As a high unemployment and low income area there is a lot of demand for this king of service.  Funding raising contributes about $40,000.00 to this program but the Y spends 5 times that on it.

Youth Leadership is run in partnership with the Weber Foundation and has given over 650 youth some amazing opportunities.  This program is run at all 8 facilities in the District and operates with kids from gr. 6 to 12 to build leadership, teach teamwork, help them manage conflict and develop management skills through exercises and training rather than lecturing.  It builds community and global awareness, gives the students travel opportunities in Canada and abroad and has sent young people to work as volunteers to projects in Germany, Costa Rica, Ecuador, the Us and Sierra Leone.  Naomi says the kids feel the opportunities have a huge impact on their lives.  She learns as much from them as they take from the program and now that it has been in place for a while past graduates of the program are coming back to help, reaching out to the Y again to give back.

There is a fairly new CEO at the District and they have just finished a new Strategic Plan to run from 2012 - 2017.  The Y's are being seen as community hubs that work to alleviate youth health problems, poverty and unemployment and try to inspire people to reach their full potential.  Their new brand is MY Y and it Inspires Youth, is Strong, and Opens Doors.  They are working with others in partnership, they develop technologies to help connect, they teach leadership and build competencies and they work to develop a culture of teams.

Naomi thanked Roger for sponsoring her and said she is enjoying her membership in Rotary. 

Naomi Bell's Classification Bill Molesworth 2013-04-10 00:00:00Z 0

Randy Taylor

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 26, 2013

Jamie Tripp asked what it would take to change the world and suggested that Rotary is doing that in large ways and small and suggested to our guests that they consider making the commitment to a better world through Service above Self.

Maureen introduced Randy Taylor who came from poverty and whose parents suffered from alcoholism - a combination which put him on the streets at 14 but he found himself on radio and grew through that experience and others into a career as a speaker and coach and author of The Winner Within and owner of Taylor Made Leadership.

Randy thanked Bill Richardson, who was away skiing, for the invitation.  He started by suggesting that we can always learn and especially from children.  His son asked him recently if they could build something and, of course, Randy said sure, what?  His son needed a box with dials that you could put a person in and take him out the same only nice.  Randy asked who the first customer would be to find out it was going to be himself.  What Randy took from that was that if you don't like something, you should change it.

Self employment starts with belief.  Children start out believing but as they learn more doubt gets introduced.  As a 14 year old street kid his prospects did not seem that great - staying alive and out of jail would be called success.  But as he left High School at 16 his guidance counsellor left him with a phrase he's never forgotten - "Where you are now has nothing to do with where you can go."  You can move down the path you deserve.

Most businesses suffer cycles of boom and bust and they feed themselves.  When things are going well a business person is confident and happy and his contacts and cold calls realize this and respond to it.  When they are not going so well the contacts and calls become stressed and even desperate which puts prospects off and can lead to more failure.  To stay on the top of the cycle you need to maintain consistency and be what he calls a productiv paranoid.  Just cause things are going well today doesn't mean they will tomorrow so focus on the horizon and don't relax.  Failure is a few errors in judgement made daily.  Success is a few exercises in disciplin done every day.  If you plan to make 10 calls a day and only make 5 that's an error and if you repeat it it becomes 20 calls missed, a hundred.

In a boss employee relationship there is structure and expectations.  The boss directs and the employee does the stuff - it can't be put off because the boss has a list and the items have to be checked off or there will be consequences.  If the list is completed successfully there may be a bonus but after taxes what does that amount to?  So you feel you can do it yourself and go out on your own.  But now you've lost the boss.  You have to do everything - find the clients, do the work, do the books, it becomes overwhelming.

You have to take on two jobs - be the boss, plan the next day, make the schedule, draw up the list for your employee then, - be the employee and check off the list.  As the boss you have to disregard your employee's preferences for long lunch hours and as the employee you have to respond to your boss's direction.  You have to prepare, do the homework and be ready.  He told the story of the radio announcer who never made an on air mistake.  When Randy got a chance to tour the guy's studio he found scripts with the time and the record title and the announcer's own name all written in.  These scripts were written while the record was playing and read, not ad libbed.

Amateurs wing it, for results, be a pro.


Randy Taylor Bill Molesworth 2013-03-27 00:00:00Z 0

Shop Local

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 19, 2013

Gary introduced Ashley Matt, who grew up in Midland before going to College for Journalism and Public Relations.  She's worked as an entertainment photo editor in Los Angeles, Miami and Toronto and as a trascriber in Burbank.  She has assisted at the Toronto and Sundance festivals and as a production assistant on location in Athens.  She has also written miniseries and screeenplays.  With he was Nate Lacroix who is a graduate of Sheridan's film school and who has directed and edited short films and doucmentaries and has done music and special effects as well.  He filmed and edited the Acts of Kindness video.  They both have come back to Midland with their families and are embarked on a documentary project.

Ashley and Nate spoke (and showed slides and video) about their project - a full 90 minute documentary about the merits - economic, health, community awareness - of shopping locally.The movie, for which they already have a trailer, will be produced locally, will include interviews with business people, producers and shopper and will follow Nate and Ashley as they live locally.  It will be debuted at the MCC and then will be distributed internationally.

They have a budget of $50,000.00 for costs, living expenses and some staff salaries.  They have raised 10 so far.  They are well into pre-production which includes script development, research, recruiting participants and doing promotion and fund raising.  March through August they plan to shoot, market and do more fundraising.  For the month of July they will film themselves doing a 30 day live local challenge.  Ashley does the interviews, Nate does the filming and they both act as roadies.

The fall will be for post-production while they review footage and edit the final film which is scheduled to be shown at a gala screening on Dec. 7.  Then they will submit it to film festivals in the hopes of both making some money and of bringing Huronia to the world. 

For comparison, they mentioned that Supersize Me cost $65,000.00 and grossed 30 million.  Though they face budget challenges they think some resourcefulness and the economies of digital make the production possible and the increasing popularity of documentaries and documentary festivals make success likely.  They want to work to create change and inspire people while connecting the community, supporting local businesses and promoting the unique economy we have here.

Ron thanked the two for their presentation and their commitment to the community.

Shop Local Bill Molesworth 2013-03-20 00:00:00Z 0

Gary Beutler's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 12, 2013

Ron said Gary has been a long time resident of Midland  Though he moved to Toronto for a while in the 80's he came back in 1988 and has been in business here since.

Gary wanted to clear something up right away - it's Boy tler, aka The Water Guy.  He is married to Sheryl and they have a daughter living in Toronto.  His parents were German but born in Poland and his father served in WWII, was wounded twice and was a POW of the Russians.  Four of his brothers were killed.  The large farm they grew up on was seized by the Russians and when Gary's father returned home he found his parents living in a small apartment so he fled to Germany and finally came to Canada.  Gary's mother's father fought in two wars and 3 countries and he led his family to flee the Russians and they also lost everything.  Both parents ended up in Windsor, where they both had relatives and where they met.

They were assigned to jobs, his dad as a baker and his mom in a factory but they worked hard and in 1954 they leased their own bakery and in 1959 they moved to Midland to buy their own.  We saw some pictures and it is clear that the hair gene is strong on the paternal side of the family.  Gary and his two brothers wearing suits, sometime in the 70's maybe? looked like something from a heavy metal band.  They all worked nights in the bakery and summers they put in 60 hours a week but they also played sports - Gary in tennis shorts and big hair.

Gary became a journeyman baker at Dominion and went to school at Georgian and then became Bakery Manager in Orillia for two years before becoming supervisor of 70 bakeries in Miracle Food Marts across Ontario.  This was before he turned 29, at which age he became director of Bakeries for the new Superstores Loblaws was building so he planned and supervised construction and staffing in these 125,000 sq. ft. facilities.  He called that his dream job.  His next move was to the opposite - a job from hell - VP for Dimpflmeier which was an out of date operation that was resistant to change so in 1989 he started Eurobuns in Midland.  It's primary customers were retail outlets and restaurants and summer camps and it did very well, expanding to 20 employees but it became harder to get trained staff and through 2006 - 2009 he was working 24/7/365 and he finally closed the store.

He had a fall back though.  In 2003 he had started the water store as a franchise but, unfortunately, the franchiser was a crook and went bankrupt so Gary and some other franchisees went independent, changed the name of their outlets and formed a Water Group Co-op that did group purchases, had a joint website, which Gary maintains, and produced educational videos. 

Gary thinks water treatment is important, especially in cottage country.  He is a Certified Water Specialist, one of only 70 in Canada, and a member of the Water Quality Association.  He constantly updates his training.  He can further purify tap water, either by supplying at the store in jugs to about 2,000 customers or by installing purification systems.  He will test the water, examine the plumbing, advise, prescribe and train on equipment he installs.  While taste is the prime driver for systems, saving can be realized on soap and appliance wear with purifiers.  Our local water is hard and it does cause efficiency problems in applicances and he can also reduce the taste of chlorine.  If you're on a well you also get hard water and can also have iron or the sulfur smell.  They also work with commercial operations which need good water for coffee or dishwashers, etc.

As an independent he can deal with suppliers he approves of and he mostly deals with Waterite.  He is also moving into air filtration products from Heaven Fresh.  He feels the future is good as people become more aware of the advantages of filtration.  He says, 'Buy a filter or be a filter, your choice.'

Gary is also a car nut and still has his uncle's 1965 chevy in all it's original splendor - which means he's too cheap to fix it up.  In 1980 he went to racing school for open wheel cars but stopped racing because of work.  In 2002 he came back to sports cars and no races a Boxter S.  His wife is active in the car club as well.

Ron suggested Gary was either a serial entrepreneur or he can't keep a job and he thanked him for his talk and presented him with the certificate of donation to Polio Plus. 

Gary Beutler's Classification Bill Molesworth 2013-03-13 00:00:00Z 0

Scotiabank Economist

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 05, 2013

Ron introduced Warren Justice, the Chief Economist of Scotia Bank very briefly.

Warren started by saying that the Bank is established pretty well everywhere and he travels a lot and is constantly reminded that we are very fortunate to live here.  He thinks there's a lot going on in the world at the moment and much of it means that it is impossible to forecast anything.  He said he will explain a bit about why he can't forecast and then he will do so for a while.

Back when he was studying Economics 101 they taught that business moved in cycles which are familiar and so can be predictable - business drops off, production is cut back, people are laid off, stockpiles are depleted, demand starts up and production gets back to normal.  And there is some good news trickling out now - consumer spending is up and housing demand in the States is growing and there is some revitalization.  But this is not a regular cycle and we won't be going back to what we knew.  There will be a lot of change and an unfolding of a new, unfamiliar world around us.

Growth is happening in different places - two thirds fo global growth is happening in Asia and places like Brazil and they are growing twice as fast as the Western economies.  The demand will be for resources - minerals, grains, livestock - in a world that is short of them which is good news for Canada.  China is the biggest consumer of raw materials and we are holding a ten year old image of that country as one that produces cheap electronics because they have cheap labour.  The paradigm has changed. 

Americans are consuming more cars - they are replacing the ones they haven't replaced over the last 4 years - but they are not adding, they are replacing.  It's China that's buying new and the demand there is huge.  This will be good for Ontario's car plants but Asia is building their own too.  Simcoe Muskoka depends on tourism and the Americans are not coming here the way they used to - the dollar, the recession, passports.  But Japanese are willing to go to PEI.  With proper marketing we should be able to attract a different market here.  Chinese are now the number 1 spender on tourism, Russia is 8 and Brazil is 12.  We need to put posters up in new places.

China is also the number one market for luxury goods.  They do have a huge rich/poor split but the rich are really rich and there are a lot of them.  They have a massive population, strong growth, rising incomes and a growing demand for the stuff we have.

But it is not all ecomomics.  Many decisions are made by politicians and they take different factors into their decision making process.  From an economics point of view Keystone is a no brainer but the decision is being made at the White House.  Alberta and BC are looking at pipelines and, again, it would seem simple from an economist's point of view.  But BC will be having an election in May and, with the Liberals in trouble, the likelihood is that the NDP will win there and the leader hates pipellines.  As an investor these factors have to be taken into consideration but it's difficult to forecast.

Technology ruins forecasts.  10 years ago natural gas prices were rising and predictions were that they would continue up.  Then we got fracking and now we have surpluses and low prices.  This affects the producing Provinces and States but it also affects the national growth rate.  There are positives - cheap energy leads to growth in some areas like Sarnia where the chemical industry is coming back and manufacturing is being revitalized but it's dependent on energy and is skill based and value added. 

After all that Warren said there are things that can be predicted.  Europe is still bad news and will be for years.  The math doesn't work.  They have too much debt and weak banks - where they should be enabling growth they are pulling loans to improve their balance sheets and lower deficits but people get laid off and there is negative growth.  All the governments that tried serious austerity and that have gone to the people have fallen.  Austerity is politically impossible.  A well trained graduate in Spain - motivated and willling - faces 50% unemployment.  So why are we pushing a trade deal with them?  They are a large market but they are familiar.  We should be turning to the growth regions.

The US, however, continues to entertain Warren with its Perils of Pauline approach and the constant anticipation of what crisis will they face next?  He says it's even worse than it looks.  Then why are they still able to borrow?  Their private sector is strong.  It's the government that's the problem - there is no willingness to solve the problems.  They are selling money to themselves.  The idea was to get money into circulation so people would invest but people have taken the message to heart - they're paying down debt or putting it in the bank, which is where it came from.  It's starting to move now and that will lead to inflation, eventually, 2 or 3 years, maybe.

The new world rising will be important for Canada in general and Ontario, though it will probably grow slower than the rest of the country which had the resources.  Our average income has gone to about 10% above the national average to about 4% below and Ontario has a big deficit so is cutting back on healthcare, education and etc. which means layoffs.  But new jobs, different jobs, are being created in the private sector and that should help.  Our interest rates will mirror those of the US.  But we're still better off - our deficit is 1% of GDP, the States' is 8 and they are just kicking it down the road.  Our dollar will probably drop to maybe $0.96 and with the solid domestic base our banks enjoy they will contine to do well. 

They are expanding internationally and each is doing it differently.  Scotia is diversified across countries and industries but no bank can be all things to all people so each focuses on its own expertise.  As for some of the problems in China, empty cities etc., there is a slowdown and there is an imbalance but they are counterbalanced by liquidity - $3.2 billion and they are growing through local consumers and through select countries like Brazil, where they are heavily invested.  There is friction between the rich and poor and there is political unrest but they are large, diverse and rich and are the new market.

Ron thanked Warren for his insights.

Scotiabank Economist Bill Molesworth 2013-03-06 00:00:00Z 0

Zero Waste Simcoe

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 26, 2013

Randy introduced Katy Austin who is a Board Member on Zero Waste, a retired teacher and a 4 time NDP candidate who enjoyse outdoor activities.

She said back in 2008 when they were all working against Site 41 McKay and Millar, now Mayors of Midland and Tiny respectively, invited several to a new zero waste organization with the aim of reducing the need for such sites by reducing waste.  She admits that it seems hopeless but if we remember back before smoking bylaws you couldn't go anywhere without breathing second hand and now look.  Change can come.  Reducing waste through education, legislation and financial incentive can work.

She had some slides showing the awful proliferation of garbage in the oceans and mentioned the effect it has on marine life - mostly killing it.  Canada, she says, produces more garbage per capita than any other country because we have a cradle to grave waste economy.  Natural resources are converted to material, creating waste, then turned into products that need to be packaged which is thrown away and eventually we throw away the product and buy new which requires unending new resources.

Landfills leak and pollute, incineration also pollutes and becomes dependent on the generation of garbage to make the investment in the facility pay.  Simcoe is sending some garbage to an incinerator in Southern Ontario.  Zero Waste is achievable - they are far ahead of us in Europe where stuff is reformatted for reuse - but it is off the radar of our politicians in this economy.  It needs to be promoted at the County and at the Province.

Reduce by products, package with material that can be reused or composted - like beer bottles; why can't we do that with pop cans?  There is resistance, of course.  Coke is suing in Australia which is trying to impose deposits but it is in place in AB, NS and Germany.  There is a carpet company in the States that will take your old carpet and reuse the fibres which makes their product cheaper and reduces waste.

The organization suggests individuals avoid where they can, reduce when the can't and reuse if possible.  The promote the concept of extended producer responsibility which means legislating responsibility for dealing with packaging and disposal of things like water bottles.  They go to dumps or the ocean and producers take no responsibility - they should be forced to use a deposit return system.  If it's made expensive enough they might move to glass, which lasts longer.  Some corporations are helping - Toyota has moved to reusable packaging for shipping - these boxes can be used up to 150 times.

She suggests we don't buy garbage packaging and, when we do, leave the packaging at the store.  Choose recyclable products, avoid single servings, use the green bins, use travel mugs, sugar bowls instead of packets, and give experiences and consumables instead of more stuff we don't need for presents.  Regift.

Check out sites -,,  and (an exchange site).  Make it a better world for our children.

Ron offered the thanks of the Club and presented her with a certificate on recyclable paper.



Zero Waste Simcoe Bill Molesworth 2013-02-27 00:00:00Z 0

Fireside 02/13

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 18, 2013

We had guests Anna Hartland and Lana Lyons.

Bill Richardson had a report on HART III - input from previous participants is that the trip will be worthwhile and exciting and real.  They have been sorting donations - some of which is not suitable for the DR (like winter coats which have gone to the Salvation Army) - but have two truckloads of stuff.  They are looking for hygiene packs - specifics included in emails from him.  Bruce and Mike are up for 50 each which leaves them looking for another 900.  They need underwear and protein powder.

Bill also distributed an accounting for the Int'l Service Committee.  Budget $48,750.00.  Spent - Polio Plus, $10,000.00; donations on behalf of speakers to Polio Plus, $3,500.00; HART III, $15,000.00; DR school breakfast program, $800.00 and a Mobile Patient Monitoring Device for a Children's Hospital in Izmir, Turkey, $4,000.00.  Left - $15,450.00.

Joyce introduced Anna Hartman who was at CLH for many years and is now at the GB Cancer Support Centre.  She asked Lana Lyons, a volunteer and retired health care executive to speak about the Centre.  Lana said it fills a unique need, it is community based, not for profit, has charitable status and is independent.  It is located in the Penetanguishene hospital.  It's mission is Support and Education.  It is run by a Board and has, in Anna, a program co-ordinator.

Anna showed a brief video and had some testimonials about the help and information which is needed by patients.  The number diagnosed is growing but the number of deaths is declining which means that more people are living with cancer, longer.  There are physical and emotional impacts with the disease and the Centre provides a whole network of supports, from transport to meals to financial assistance and advice for all who need it.  When they started in 2011 they had 14 clients and now they have 85. 

When a patient goes to treatment in Toronto they often have a hard time keeping connected with people back home and they are asking the Club for $2,700.00 to buy 4 iPads that can travel with them to assist in keeping people in touch, to reduce the sense of isolation and to provide emotional support.  Anna and Lana left the meeting.

Joyce spoke for past DG Brian Menton who was stormbound at home.  The District has entered into a partnership with the Aboriginal Studies program at Georgian College to promote native language studies.  Only 2% of first nations people are speaking their original language, for a variety of reasons but especially because Residential schools broke the generational connection.  Graduates of the course become language activators and teachers.  This is the only such course in Ontario.  It is like a literacy program in our back yard and provides participants with a key to their identity and gives them access to a right - the right to language and to celebrate their customs and religion in their own language and to maintain their oral culture leading to empowerment, identity and a sense of their heritage.

Brian tried to connect via Skype, which was a mixed success, but he made the points that aboriginal schools have always been underfunded in Canada in comparison with other education systems and that he has seen the pride and sense of involvement that comes when peole are able to work in their own language.  The District is trying to raise $50,000.00 to help with daycare, scholarships and resource development and they are trying for matching grants.  The District has promised $5,000.00 and two Clubs have committed to helping and District 6330 is joining.  All the local chiefs are excited by the program.

The Club voted on a $5,000.00 donation by ballot and Mora asked for a second vote due to confusion of numbers of votes and on the second vote it was defeated by a small number.

Britt spoke about the Signature Project.  5 ideas have been narrowed down to two.  One is donating equipment to the new Trauma Centre and that has been supported by the Club so money will be earmarked.  Ideas on Economic Development and Community Development were somewhat similar and so have been identified has having the same goal and have been merged and a Committee has been working on ideas.  They met with McKay, Crown and Muntz and have focused on the concept of a Business Incubator.  All four communities have expressed support for the idea.

The intent would be to facilitate start ups and promote growth in companies that want to expand.  The goals would be a healthy economy, an increasing number of local businesses, increased employment, more opportunities to live and work in the community and an increased profile for Rotary.  It would be an incorporated, Board governed operation involving, mostly, Rotarians as Board members and mentors.  The Club would contribute $75,000.00 a year for a minimum of 3 years and another $75,000.00 per year would come from other donors and from rent.  It should become self sustaining.

To start the Club would oversee finding a suitable location - a building that could be rented in sections to start ups, funding, governance and the supervision of the salaried employee.  The North Simcoe Community Futures, the North Simcoe Economic Alliance, the Federal Development Bank, Trillium, the Municipalities and others would be asked to participate and for funding.

Britt asked, first, if the Club was interested in pursuing the idea.  She was asking for support at the meeting so the Committee could continue to refine the business plan for presentation in April and work on budgets over the summer for a final vote in September before work on incorporation and etc. could start.

Hank, as a member of the Committee, said it would not be political and the resources of the NSCF would be available but the Board would be the controlling entity.  In answer to the question, why not give the Community Fund the support to do it, he said they don't have the resources or space but are happy to provide support.  A question of liability was raised - whether it would be better to put it under the Fund or if an independent Board would be subject to it - but a clear answer was not arrived at.  Hank said the closest similar effort is one in Haliburton which supports mostly arts oriented projects with $50,000.00 a year.

Another discussion was held regarding conflict of interest.  Would Club members, mostly small business owners, be encouraging competition and would people asked to be mentors be faced with conflict?  Hank said he is President of the Georgian Angels which has given about 3 million to start ups over the past years and that organization has had the same concerns on occasion but often new companies need support to grow.  There would be business cases before support was given and needs and capacity would be identified.

The consensus was that there were still questions and that the attendance at the Fireside was relatively low so that it should be researched further and that the rest of the membership should have some information regarding this major commitment.  So this is it.  Review this, discuss with members of the Committee, consider.  There will be another Club discussion at a later date and a decision as to whether to proceed will be taken then.  Notice will be given. 

Fireside 02/13 Bill Molesworth 2013-02-19 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 12, 2013

Mora introduced Doug Ironside as the Planning Chair for R.A.C.E. against Drugs and a nurse with the Simcoe Muskoda Health District.

Doug said the initials stand for Respect - Action - Courage - Excellence and he thanked the Club for its support and for the invitation to talk about the initiative.  He introduced David Hobson as the other co-chair.  It's a joint project with many local organizations and the police forces.  About 500 gr. 5 students from 20 schools from all the North Simcoe Boards participate each year.  Each group of students spends about half a day at the Gym at NSSRC but the event acutally lasts for two days.  Grade 5 seems to be a receptive age for this message.  Programs geared to older kids assume they have experience or at least knoweldge of drugs but this program hopes to give the young ones the tools to deal with exposre when it comes.  DARE is a follow up in gr. 6, a reinforcing program.

The program uses an auto racing theme to generate interest and includes a series of pit - or educational - stops that talk about things like the short and long term effects of drugs, refusal skills and resistance techniques.  David is the host and MC at the event.  Partners include the Midland and Provincial police, the School Boards, the Wellness agencies, the Y and etc.

Getting the students there by bus is the major cost and it has gone up dramatically over the last few years.  Students are charged a nominal amount for transportation but it still represents the largest part of their budget which averages about $2,000.00.

The pit stops are - Flyers Fitness, hockey players talking about active lifestyles; an OPP drug display on how to recognize drugs; a 'Gamble Scramble'; Brain Science which shows models of the effects of drugs on the brain; knowledge, a trivia test; Play Live Tobacco Free; Impairment; Think of Me where kids express themselves to drunk drives on the risks they represent; Story Tellilng Tipi; You Can Say No, a message relayed by MSS drama students who play out strategies; and the Kart Race which is the Mario Kart Wii which illustrates the need for concentration and control in cars and, by extrapolation, in life.

Doug says the program seems to make an impact that stays with the kids even into high school.  He has had discussions with students years later who feel it helped.  Aaron Ledlie remembers it and look how he turned out.

Mora presented Doug with a donation of $1,500.00 for the program and Sue thanked him for coming to speak and gave him the notice of the donation to help end polio.

R.A.C.E. Bill Molesworth 2013-02-13 00:00:00Z 0

Out of the Cold

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 05, 2013

Amanda introduced Robert Sykes who holds a Master of Social Work and who moved to Midland in 1994 to be the Executive Director of the Catholic Family Life Centre.  He has been active in the community, serving on the founding Board of Community Link and working with Big Brothers and Big Sisters.  He is now the Deputy Director of Out of the Cold and is leading the drive to establish the new shelter.

Robert said it was an accident that brought him to Midland.  He had been doing consulting work which required a lot of travel but he fell off a ladder when volunteering and had to take a desk job.

The Out of the Cold program is now 10 years old and is currently offering accommodation and meals from 5 - 8 pm 7 days a week.  430 trained volunteers prepare and serve 1,500 dinners, 650 breakfasts and supervise 425 overnight stays.  It is part of a number of programs and agencies, each of which help as they can.  Shelter Now, for instance, tries to transition clients into permanent housing and it provides a vital level of support but it can't respond on an emergency shelter basis.

There was a shelter in Midland but it closed in 1995.  It had 8 beds and received Provincial funding and drew guests from all of North Simcoe.  As it operated under the supervision of the Salvation Army the guests often helped out at the Thrift Store.  Housing is a Human Right and lack of housing leads to migration.  People move away from their support groups in hopes of finding something and end up worse off.  The Standard calls for one funded bed per 2,000 residents in the community.  Robert says Wal-Mart doesn't build unless there's a market of 65,000 people which means North Simcoe should have 33 beds and it only has 6 now.  One in every 40 people in a community will experience homelessness and if a person suffers from mental health issues their chances of being homeless at some point are 50/50.  With Waypoint in our area the need for beds goes up.

Many visitors to OotC are only looking to eat but many people still sleep outside or take refuge in unsafe environments.  There are as many as 2,000 students sleeping on couches in the County.  So support is strong for a permanent shelter.  A poll shows 86% support among the public and the politicians are supportive.  Total cost will approach a million dollars.  The OotC is fiscally responsible, is incorporated and has charitable status.

Robert showed a plan of the facility which will be on the second floor of the education wing of Knox Church.  It is a regional solution, is designed to be flexible, is accessible (the elevator is taking one third of the million), will be green with solar on the roof and will be safe for guests, staff and the community with surveillance and lighting.  It will be open 24/7/365 and will stay primarily volunteer.  There will be a core of paid staff and there is fund raising and grant applications going on.  There will be 25 beds in smaller rooms so a mix of men, women and youth can be accommodated or even families.  There will be showers, laundry, a commercial kitchen, a lounge with wi-fi (for job hunting) and the CLH will help with the cleaning.

The facility will also serve as a Community Service Centre and as a drop in centre and warming/cooling site.  The staff will be offering programs and education and will be doing research into homelessness in rural environments, in conjunction with Waypoint.  This is a subject that has not been studied.

Zoning is approved and tenders are in.  Offers of help in kind, such as donated solar panels, materials and beds have been received.  The congregation of Knox is supportive.  Orientation and training for new volunteers is ongoing.  It will be a resource for those most in need, Robert says and adds that 'Kindness inspires kindness'.

Out of the Cold Bill Molesworth 2013-02-06 00:00:00Z 0

Alison's Re-Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 22, 2013

Alison said that when she sat down to write some notes she was thinking she'd been in Rotary for about 10 years but when she started counting she realized it was 17.  She recalls the number of members was about the same and noted 24 are still active.  The big difference, of course, is that she was the 3rd woman to join, after Terri, also still a member.  She harked back to the glory days of Dean Nicholls and 'women in Rotary'.

Alison has served on successive Boards for about half of those years - International, Vocational, Community Service and Pres. Elect, Pres. and Past Pres.  She really enjoyed the International and Youth Exchange programs and served on the District Committee for exchanges for 7 years, dealing with people in Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, New Zealand and Germany.  She met so many great students who are now friends for life. 

In 1996 she had three children ages 7, 4, and 2 so she was already busy.  She had been working at NEBS for 10 years and was working on their transition to a new marketing plan based on data bases.  They compiled business records and analyzed the data to target potential.  They were among the first to join the air miles program and worked hard at developing partnerships and alliances. 

In 1999 she started on her MBA, which took two and a half years.  She'd get the kids in bed and do her homework.  In the early 2,000's there were acquisitions - Chiswick,McBee, Payweb, etc. and she worked on all the brands, doing the creative and the production of direct mail and overseeing about 30 people.  Then they were bought by Delux fro the States which began a slow integration of purchasing and HR and she joined senior management to develop North America wide marketing.  They created jobs, developed targets, drove the integration and then positions were eliminated as they all reported to the US.  She moved to developing strategic markets, developing webinar series, seminar series produced in 10 cities, doing road trips with trucks to hold displays for small businesses.  She was travelling all the time, which was stressful, and she was the only Canadian on the team, which could create a left out feeling.  When she was offered a package last August, she took it.

She says she misses the people but not the stress and now she's taking the opportunity to start her own business which aims to help small local businesses with marketing and developing business plans and enhancing their existing technologies.  Shes targeting businesses with 20 employees plus or minus and she's working from home.

Now her girls are 24, 21 and 18.  Alysha is in first year at Humber and a member of the Ontario fastball champion team and taking multi media.  Alana is in Niagara taking  acting in flim and TV and working as a waitress and Emily is married and living in London and taking a MBA and travelling.  She and Dave have been married 27 years - he's still at Elcan - and they are in Wyevale with an old dog, a new dog and a guinea pig.

Ron thanked her for the update and for her commitment to the Club and the Community.

Alison's Re-Classification Bill Molesworth 2013-01-23 00:00:00Z 0

Planning in Midland 2013

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 15, 2013

Ron introduced Wes Crown who has 25 years experience in Planning with Tay and Midland and in the private sector.

Wes said planners try to think in the long term and, while the economy is undergoing one of its adjustments, he is positive about what's happening and he went on to describe some of the current activity.

Melchior is building 6,000 sq. ft. in front of Canadian Tire and already has tenants - Royal LePage and Desjardins.  The GBGH expansion has begun the first phase and all approvals are in.  They are waiting for word on funding from the Province before starting the second phase.  Marina Park is being rebuilt by Deneen Const. which is a reputable firm and who are talking about adding sustainable features to the building, including geo thermal heating.  The new Tim Horton's is built and operating but there is a strip along Bay Street to be built on - they are looking at 20,000 sq. ft. on three floors and the Town is encouraging a design that would fit in with downtown features like building to the sidewalk, using brick and using windows to make it attractive from the street.  The Pro-Oil outlet is almost done and redevelops a lot and the Midland Traditions Retirement Home on Pillsbury is under construction and will have 110 apartments to serve a growing seniors population.  The only residential project is the one on Young St. which is mostly towns and semis but that puts them at a different price point that might be more affordable.  Land is cleared for an retail mall across from Boston Pizza of 93,000 sq. ft. to be built in phases.  The builders have done a lot of similar things in Barrie and so have experience but haven't released any info on tenants.

Unimin is up for sale - 3,300 ft. on the water and 40 acres and an opportunity to define Midland as a waterfront community.  A study has been commissioned and is under way and the old plant is being demolished.  There will be public consultation on the 24th and more to follow as the plan is developed.

Wes feels this concentration on commercial is a good sign for the community as it represents not only investments for the community but makes Midland better able to attract visitors and, in the long run, residents.  Cultural developments like the MCC will also help attract both.

The Huronia Economic Alliance is in its early days but represents the strength of a group.  The website is up now and work is being done on developing an incubator concept.

Population forecasts for 2031 are 22,500 for Midland and 11,000 for Penetang.  For 2041 the numbers are 26,881 and 13,142.  Employment numbers are 13,800 and 6,000 for 2031 and 16,487 and 7,168 for 2041.  Again, as a long term effort the town has to have sewer and water systems in place.

In response to a question Wes said the recycling operation is now on track to buy some land on McDonald beside the Beamish pit and public consultation will come.  The tech plans are being reviewed by a third party to eliminate any sense of conflict as Town staff did help on making this application after the one on Highway 12 met with resistance.

Planning in Midland 2013 Bill Molesworth 2013-01-16 00:00:00Z 0

Shakespeare In the Park

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 18, 2012

Alison introuded Mike St. Amant who was our outbound student to Denmark 6 years ago and who is now going to college to take acting and who has been performing in productions in PEI and other places as well as working on a special project.

Mike said that after his exchange experience he spent two more years finishing High School and then started training to be a paramedic but on a whim did an audition and got the part.  It turns out he likes acting better so is now studying to become a "starving actor" at Sheraton and is in his third year.  He has signed with an agent and has had some work but he's also trying to start a festival in Midland - Shakespeare In The Park - for two weeks in July.

It won't start till 2014 because he wants to spend 2013 raising awareness and money and linking with the educational and community organizations here.  He feels such a Festival will promote the arts, local talent and local jobs.  He has support from actor friends so it will be affordable and accessible and will offer the opportunity to create educational programs.

Mike says there is not much outdoor theatre in Ontario but Shakespeare is popular and he's familiar to students because he's part of their curriculum.  Also his work is in the public domain which saves money.  Drayton doesn't do Shakespeare so there's no competition.  Such a Festival would be something new for this community and would act as an intro to other aspects of arts in the community and would bring professional actors to town as well as audiences.  He has an idea for an acting camp as well.

He's planning a launch party, a Canada Day event, a Boat Cruise and a Special Gala hosted at St. Marie to announce the first season.  Of course, he needs help with volunteers, sponsors and donors but he's still in the early stages and is testing the level of interest.  He figures the budget would be between 15 and 20 thousand the first year and he's making a submission to the Board and has talked to Huronia Players. 


Shakespeare In the Park Bill Molesworth 2012-12-19 00:00:00Z 0

GBGH Renovations

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 11, 2012

Ralph introduced Sheree Noon, manager of Emergency and ICU since 2006 who has overseen a 40% reduction in wait times and Dr. David Bayfield, Chief of Emergency Medicine, winner of an emergency medicine research award, implementer of software for medical apps on handhelds and one of the planning team working on the new Emergency Dept.

Sheree presented a video tour introducing the See and Treat area which takes the 50% of emergency department patients that are mobile and moves them through quickly, the Sub Acute area that takes the severe pain and stroke patients etc. into the 6 bays that are equipped with cardiac monitors, the Communications Centre which is a very tight space for the up to 5 people that have to be there at different times, the Acute Care area which has 14 beds with cardiac monitors which is not enough and the Trauma Centre which has 2 bays and which is very crowded and short of the high end equipment it needs to deal with patients in crisis.

All these areas are essentially open or divided only by curtains which means there are privacy issues with people overhearing doctor patient conversations, isolation problems as there are no areas to close off to hinder the spread of pathogens and security issues as there is no way to keep people in or out.  The renovations are aiming to address all these issues as well as space requirements and traffic flow problems.  The plan is to expand into the space currently occupied by ambulance functions and then, eventually, enclose the ambulances so the transfer of patients will take place out of the weather.

David said that while he is proud of the people who work in emerg and proud of the job they do with the resources at hand he is excited by the prospects of doing better.  In 1997 emerg saw 25,000 visitors with 8 beds.  In 2000 there was an expansion but now the hospital sees 45,000 a year with only 17 beds.  The move to the See and Treat concept has helped and there have been some renovations and reorganization but a major renovation is needed to deal with the problems Sheree highlighted.  The overal cost of the project is $12.7 million but it has been divided into phases and the first phase will cost $5 million which the hospital already has.  There will be more fundraising and more help from the Province as they move into the next phases. 

The Hospital has been in the top 10 in the Province for wait times for facilities that serve over 35,000 since 2009 and is in top 10 in all measures which helps when applying to the government for funding.  He thanked Rotary for its ongoing support and the hard work and dedication that has gone into raising $170,000.00 over the last years.

Phase one will develop the most important spaces - triage, communications and decontamination as well as see the purchase of much needed equipment.  There has been a lot of work in the planning - incorporating all legislated requirements and grouping services to assist with ease of traffic flow and supervision.  He responded to Fred's question about getting infections in hospitals by saying there are guidelines which they must subscribe to and they are installing handwashing stations everywhere but the new space will have systems for reverse isolation air flow and hardwalls instead of curtains.

As a result of their meeting or exceeding standards they have been awarded new positions so now they have a pharmacist technician in emerg part time, a ward clerk has had hours expanded and more nurses and doctors hours have been approved.

Ron thanked them both for coming and making their presentation. 

GBGH Renovations Bill Molesworth 2012-12-12 00:00:00Z 0

Club Assembly

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 27, 2012

Hank reported account balances - Bingo $89,000.00; POD $45,000.00; Auction so far $$29,000.00; and Club $10,000.00.  There are no remaining large commitments after paying off the MCC one.  He is still trying to work out how to email the invoices but there's a glitch in the technology.

Mora for Community Service distributed ballots for the vote on $5,000.00 for Children who have Witnessed Violence which carried with near unanimity.  Other projects have been submitted and are being considered.  One hardship request for equipment for a spinal chord victim was met with $500.00.  They are looking at upgrading the graphics on the Firehall sign.

Maureen from Vocational is passing the Student of the Month job on to Naomi.  They presented two Vocational Awards this year and the Youth Exchange outbound student has been accepted.  Alison is working on RYLA.  Adventures in High Tech has been held and the candidate will be speaking to the Club on his experience.  She encouraged members to remember the Mentorship program that is being driven by 7010.

Bill Richardson reported that the International budget this year - at 25% of the Club's budget - was $48,750.00 and so far they've presented $10,000.00 to Life4Kids, $5,000.00 for water filters.  Another $15,000.00 has been committed to pay for the supplies associated with the HART trip to Haiti.  21 participants have registered to travel there and help with projects, including building a house, but they will be paying their own way - the 15 is for supplies and equipment that will be used or left there to continue the work.  If you are interested let Bill know, he's starting a waiting list for a seond trip.  There is 20 thousand left in the budget and the Committee is considering some options but is open to suggestions.

Aaron Lavin is trying to schedule a bring a guest day for January and looking for a speaker that will involve the guests.  He hopes to have a marketing program in place soon. 

Aaron Ledlie has been sending the photos to the press and sometimes they get picked up but he's suggesting a group get together to work out a media campaign and has scheduled a meeting for Dec. 10 to brainstorm it.  He suggests linking to Aaron Lavin's idea and some people are already on board but others are welcome.  The location is not determined yet. 

Roger Gignac announced that next week, Tuesday, is Hamper Night.  The Salvation Army is being a big help with the logistics so bring the family and a pot luck and enjoy the evening.  Guy is bringing his PA and some music.  Each Rotarian contributes $50.00.  No charge for guests. 

There will not be a Wednesday meeting.

Club Assembly Bill Molesworth 2012-11-28 00:00:00Z 0

Frank Graham Cycle Liberation Tour

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 06, 2012

Chester Graham offered his thanks for the hospitality.  He said his father had been to 10 of the annual commemorations of the liberation of Holland which took place 67 years ago.  The latest trip, with his family, was for the 65th and Chester said he'd been overwhelmed by the level of love and respect the Dutch have for the Canadian vets.  He was touched every day he was there.  On the trips his father has taken he's always stayed with the same family and the two families are close - 5 came from Holland for Frank's 90th.

Members of that family are organizing an opportunity for 25 youth - 18 to 25 - from Canada and another 25 from Holland to cycle from Juno Beach 700 kms past several memorials and battle grounds marking events in the First and Second Wars to Holland in time for the next annual commemoration next May.  There will be 10 chaperones and they will stay in hostels or camp and they will be billeted in Holland.  The participants will travel at their own expense.  Chester's brother Lloyd is helping with recruitment and they have several committed to the trip already.  The trip has been named in Frank Graham's honour.

Chester had a slide show that highlighted some of Frank's visits to Holland and features of the cycle trip.  The hope is that the project will grow to include more participants every year and some pipe band members have expressed interest.  The bikes are being sponsored by a Dutch company and there is a website -  It is scheduled to run between the 22nd and the 29th of April which, Chester admits, is problematic for students due to course requirements but some have made accommodation. 

Frank's not riding.  The trip includes visits to Vimy, Dieppe and Niemagen.  Chester has made a request to the Board for support to help defray some of the participant's expenses and thanked the Club for its consideration.

Ron thanked Chester and the Veterans in attendance.

Frank Graham Cycle Liberation Tour Bill Molesworth 2012-11-07 00:00:00Z 0

Author James Bacque

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 23, 2012

Phil introduced Jim, an author with 250,000 fiction and non fiction books sold and documentaries produced about him and his work.  His ancestors settled here and he and his wife, Elizabeth, a teacher and painter, split their time between here and Toronto.  They've been married since 1955 and now have two great grandchildren.

Jim congratulated Rotary on its work, especially its efforts towards world peace.  Jim claimed to have been saved by literature.  When caught reading after curfew at his boarding school and facing punishment the house master let him off cause he was reading War and Peace.  It captured him - the lives of all those Russians - and it introduced him to a new medium of understanding which he vowed to try himself.  The paradox he discovered is that writing requires ego and forces humility.  But Jack McClellan encouraged him to enter into the languages, the lives and the experiences beyond his own.

As a participant in WW II he felt that it had been justified but he discovered that some behaviours of the allies were no better than our enemies.  A million German prisoners died of maltreatment and starvation after the war's end and Jim has written about this atrocity.  The bombing campaigns obliterated cities, causing horrific suffering.  In 1986 he realized that Cologne, which looks old, is actually completely rebuilt.  His sister helped to plan the raids that targeted civilians and he used to think all the people that took part were heroes but he's changed his mind and he pities the suffering while he hates the crimes that started it.  In trying to explain he tried to combine in himself both novelist and historian in the production of his 'big book'.

There are two enemies in a war - we have to see ourselves and enemies of the other side and try to learn to stand with them without hatred.  He turned to Tolstoy again to try to remove the lense of perspective - our own - and to present each side as they believed themselves to be.  He feels the hatred poisons us still and we must leap the bounds of cultural stereotypes.  Certainly Hitler was a problem and it's still unclear whether he was deceitful or not about the peace treaties he offered.  He certainly broke some and laughed while doing it but Churchill had elements of racism and megalomania in his personality that may have driven him to reject overtures.  These are theories and we need to know what actually happened.  There was another offer of peace after the fall of Poland and it might have been possible to maintain the empire and let Stalin and Hitler fight it out rather than go to war to guarantee European borders.

Jim tries to look to individuals who make up the events.  Canadians who fought were almost all volunteers and he tries to discover what drove them.  There were 8 plots to kill Hitler over the 10 years he was in power and those plotters and the people who spied against their own country or who helped refugees escape are heroes too.  Almost always it is the hopeful and idealistic young who are destroyed by the men at the top.  Our history and our contributions are significant and fascinating and stand on their own, they don't need the myths and the concept of 'the enemy' that have been promulgated by writers on our side.  The winners write the history and Churchill made a contribution there as well that we need to understand.

Jim quoted Palmerston who said that Nations have no Friends, only Interests but Jim thinks it is in a nation's interest to have friends and that events today can be seen in that light - why drive the Iranians away, why not maintain contact and seek options? 

Author James Bacque Bill Molesworth 2012-10-24 00:00:00Z 0

Robin Wells Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 09, 2012
Robin is a professional arborist, of which there are only about 1,000 certified in Ontario.  He grew up on a farm south of Sherbrooke and went to elementary school in Lennoxville, with Ralph's wife, coincidentally.  A lot of people moved out of that Province and his family followed some friends to Barrie.  He met his wife in 1976 and they married in 1980 and have two sons and a daughter.  He and a partner started a company in 1992 and he went on his own in 2004.
Robin is currently studying for a Master's Arborist, a test with a 50% failure rate and a rank that's held by only 6 in Ontario.  His company does pruning, tree removal, valuations and reports on risk assessment.  They have a tool that shows the tree's rings and internal damage with affecting the tree.  It's the only one north of the GTA.
They will work with contractors to establish tree protection zones and to establish which trees to protect - hint - it's not always the biggest; it more likely will be the trees just coming to maturity that will have a longer life span and a smaller root area which is easier to protect.  This service is popular in the GTA but it should be done everywhere.
Robin's is the only company with an Air Spade north of the GTA.  This is a high pressure air hose that dislodges the soil around roots to disturb compacted soil or to allow the laying of cable or services without disturbing the roots.
Robin will also work on insect control - the Emeral Ash Borer is moving into our area.  The tree can be treated with an injection but if it isn't, the affected tree will die.  People are cutting their trees in the GTA and bringing the wood up to cottages for fires but bringing the borer with it.
They can to lightning protection of trees, though it's expensive.  Basically a copper wire is installed on the high points and grounded but it needs to be redone every year as the tree grows past the tip of the rod.
And they will install holiday lights, take them down and even store them.  This is more likely for larger scale displays but it does give the bucket trucks something to do in the off season.
Robin's company has always given to charity and at it's latest Board meeting it was agreed that 10% of profits would be dedicated to Rotary.
In answer to a question, Robin said the value of certification is growing as people recognize what the training contributes, though for many people, lowest cost is the only priority.  Toronto has a canopy protection program and it's material recommends a certified arborist so the word is spreading there.
Robin Wells Classification Bill Molesworth 2012-10-10 00:00:00Z 0

Alex at Bayfield House

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 25, 2012
Alex welcomed the Club to the facility.  He said he was a Field Manager in Insurance in 1970 when his wife thought they should buy a 21 bed operation on Yonge St.  It was 6,000 sq. ft. and had no elevator and while he kept his job in Toronto he also became bath attendant and elevator boy.  He couldn't keep up the two so moved to Midland.  In 1972 the Province started to take more oversight, trying to standardize fees and services and Alex did some organizing and lobbying.  They had been planning a new place but construction was put on hold till 76. 
They did start to build and planned to exceed standards.  They made the dining room big enough to serve all residents at once and provided activity areas.  They took over the Coldwater building, which was old and took a lot of work.  The Villa achieved accreditation.  They introduced respiet beds and a day care program.  In 1985 they opened the Villa/Lodge so a person who was still more independent could be near a spouse who needed more care. 
They took on facilities in Orangeville and Haileybury, bidding and winning against chain operations, and took on a place in Manitoulin which was only 60 beds.  A place that size has almost all the costs of one as large as 100 beds but, of course, less income, so they are difficult but many smaller places can't support larger homes and people want to be near families.
London and Chatham were next.  Alex was active in the OLTC Assoc. and served as President, which meant dealing with the government, always problematic because a change in government often meant changes in policies.  They recruited volunteers, engaged in lobbying, he wrote a book and in 2002 they took licenses in Leacock, Barrie, Orillia, Huntsville and North Hamilton and Jarlette became the biggest family owned chain.  They won the OLTC quality improvement award and Leacock won an Innovations award and will be competing at a national event.
Accreditation means they have met or exceeded standards on a checklist of over 400 - Barrie received only 13 recommendations and no orders.  They have constantly tried to optimize building efficiencies and involve residents in decisions and activities.
Alex said he had travelled extensively and, while providing care anywhere is difficult Canada always compares well against facilities in other countries he's seen.  He and his staff offered members of the Club a tour and the meeting adjourned.
Alex at Bayfield House Bill Molesworth 2012-09-26 00:00:00Z 0

Sustainable Project

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 25, 2012
Several members were not able to attend the Fireside and I had hoped to have a brief review of that meeting out sooner.  So, for the record, here's a short report and sorry for the delay.

The concept was for 6 working groups to develop a suggestion for a long term, sustainable project that could make a difference in our community.  It should involve partners, require commitments from members and could involve significant funding.

Dave Mink reported for the Community Improvement Committee.  He said they had many ideas but focused on the concept of promoting festivals and events in the area by hiriing an co-ordinator who would work with local groups to present events that they were already participating in, who would apply for grants and who would co-ordinate publicity.  Space would be needed for this person to work out of and links to the local municipalities would be vital.

Jamie Tripp, for the Education Committee said involving youth and encouraging participation was the key to the idea of starting an Interact Club and both High Schools.  The Y, the Boys and Girls Club, The Wye Marsh and the Library are trying to start a Youth Advisory Group and would be partners.  Support would have to come from the schools and Rotarians would be required to act as mentors.  Funding would be minimal.  Once started, the groups should be self sustaining and projects with MARC or other charities could be developed.  The challenge is to maintain enthusiasm as students graduate.

Aaron Ledlie proposed the Rotary Club form and fund an Economic Development Corporation that would co-ordinate efforts of municipalities in North Simcoe, market the Region as a whole, act as a business incubator, work to avoid politics and join with organizations like the North Simcoe Development Futures to promote and enhance and initiate job creation throughout the area.  He suggested a salary of at least $60,000.00 a year and office and other sundry costs for at least 3 years to get it started.

Fred Hacker said the Health Committee researched 6 separate projects but came down to helping the Trauma Unit at GBGH, which Ron spoke to.  He said the area is home to many types of emergencies and accidents.  Very busy roads in season but besides that we have boating and snowmobiling accidents, patients from Waypoint and the Jail, an aging demographic with its cardiac arrests etc.  Trauma incidents have increased by 50% over the last 10 years to approach numbers reported by hospitals like St. Mike's.  Certainly most patients are evacuated but they need to be stabilized first and that needs a large team with modern equipment in a large space.  Ron showed a picture of what the current space looks like and compared it to what it should look like.  He says patients here deserve better.  The Hospital will name it the Midland Rotary Trauma Centre, there is space available and it would cost about $300,000.00 for the equipment.

Tara said that Recreation improves health and spirits, reduces medical costs and adds to enjoyment of life.  She hopes to increase year round participation, promote sustainable employment, improve socioeconomic conditions and enhance the community's culture by creating an outdoor RecPlex that would include a splash pad and an outdoor rink that would be used for ball hockey during the summer.  It could be located near the soccer fields, on the waterfront or in Little Lake.  It would cost plus or minus $500,000.00 if built on Town owned land.

There was discussion on each of these ideas as they were brought forward which I have not reported.  There was a vote but I couldn't stay for the tabulations so I understand that it was suggested that the Education project go ahead anyway because of low costs while discussion on the Events and the Trauma ideas would continue. 

Sustainable Project Bill Molesworth 2012-09-26 00:00:00Z 0

Visit from the DG

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 04, 2012
Joyce said that John had been born in Toronto but had been raised all over because his father was in the military.  John took a job sorting mail at CMHC and studied accounting, becoming chartered in 1977 and moving to Barrie.  In 1993 he was hired by the Y as a VP of Finance for a year but he only retired in 2011.  Over those years revenue increased from 750 thousand to 20 million.  He's been a Board member on many charities, especially those working with children.  He joined Rotary in 1986 and has held most of the offices available and has worked with the District on Youth Committees and Exchange Committees.  He led a GSE to Turkey and has served for 3 years as an ADG.  He is married  to Donna and both are multiple Paul Harris Fellows and benefactors.  When not involved in all these activities they curl and go to the cottage.

John thanked Joyce for the introduction and for her hard work with Rotary, most recently 3 years as an ADG.  He said he once was in the Y's Men but he found Rotary preferrable for its diversity, its commitment and its range of contributions both locally and internationally.  Since he's been involved there have been changes - the classification rule has been relaxed from one of each class per club to less than 10% of members in one class.  Women were invited to join in the late 80's and he's pleased to note that a woman he sponsored became the first female President of his Club.  Makeups can now be counted if they were taken within two weeks of the missed meeting instead of one and local Clubs are allowed to permit makeups for Board meetings, etc.  Attendance was once required to be 60% but now is only 50.  These changes have mostly been made to  increase membership and attendance but they haven't - it's still declining.  He has 26 years of perfect attendance which he has worked at because he feels he joined to be involved and he thinks the opportunities for fellowship and to work together are a major strength of the organization.  He hopes Clubs will grow through saying yes to challenges and opportunities and by working with others to benefit the community.
He says membership in our District has dropped from 1,800 to 1,600 over the last years and now he's looking for 240 new members across the District and for Midland that means 6.  This year's theme is Peace through Service and he's asking each Club to focus on an activity in the community that promotes Peace.  The District's mentorship program is working but he invites more members to help out.
There will be three international hands on trips this year - a wheelchair distribution in Jamaica, bicycles to Cambodia for students who couldn't get to school otherwise and the Domincan Republic trip.  He has asked each Club to organize an interclub visit to raise awareness and to share ideas and experiences.  Don't forget you can still get to the Conference in Ottawa for the 21st.  And the Rotary Leadership Institution is asking for stories of Rotary's impact on members or on others in the community to be collected and shared as he makes his visits.
He thanked the Club for its efforts on behalf of the Community and the World.
Visit from the DG Bill Molesworth 2012-09-05 00:00:00Z 0

Bruce Stanton, MP

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 21, 2012
Ron introduced our MP, Bruce Stanton, as a local businessman and a hard worker with a strong reputation in the riding.
Bruce started by congratulating Emily on her work and sacrifice and commented that working to change the lives of others is one of Rotary's goals.  He said he valued his years in Rotary and had gone on a study exchange back in 1984.  He had to take an honourary status when he got elected but looks forward to returning.
He remarked that despite the large number of negatives around the world Canada has set a stage and the financial foundations that will stand it in good stead as the world works through these various crises.  We hear from outside commentators, like Moody's, that the Country has an economic resilience and diversity and that we are lucky to live in a country that stands 2nd on the Attractiveness index.  The US C of C notes that Canada has recovered faster than most other countries though we all understand that we are not out of the woods yet, primarily because Canada is a trading economy and we need healthy partners.
The world economy is more integrated and more complicated than ever but the G20 countries, which represent 90% of the world's GDP, have worked together to avoid the worst.  Unemployment hit 10.3% in Canada but that rate has been dropping and now stands at 7.6 in Huronia.  Businesses are gaining confidence and government is facilitating new jobs.  He understands that manufacturing is a major concern in this area but manufacturing is in decline all over and those jobs are being replaced by service jobs and construction. 
It's a new economy.  While, over the last 5 years 1 job in 7 has been lost, many of those have been replaced  due to technological advances which have enhanced productivity and to aging demographics which change demand to goods and services.  He says the government's focus is to create a strong economy and yes, the gov't promoted infrastructure spending but it is looking now to the private sector to create jobs.
Bruce, in answer to a question, said they support the prospect of a bridge to Christian Island as offering the best opportunities to the Band for self improvement but said the Council had to take the lead.  To another question he said health care decisions are a Provincial responsibility but that Health Canada is promoting awareness of good nutrition, of the hazards of smoking and the benefits of fitness.  Regarding the Arctic he said sovereignty will become more important as warming opens the sea ways and the gov't will have to work on economic development and environmental protection.
He thanked the Club for the work it does, for the special events and the individual efforts and received his certificate marking the donation in his name to Polio Plus.
Bruce Stanton, MP Bill Molesworth 2012-08-22 00:00:00Z 0

Beausoleil First Nation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 14, 2012
Aaron Ledlie introduced Roland Monague, the Chief of the Band.  He's born and raised on Christian Island and has served two terms on Council and is in his second term as Chief. 

Chief Monague thanked the Club for the welcome, the meal and the opportunity to speak.  He said he was born in Midland, where the hospital was, and raised on the Island.  He said life there was a struggle and that he has faced challenges - the first was going to school not knowing any English - he grew up speaking Ojibway.  He went to school there through gr. 6 and then faced another challenge - going to school in Midland and boarding through the week.  This was quite a culture shock and, being billeted with strangers, he missed his large family.
He started HS at MSS but finished in Barrie because he had been recruited to play hockey with the Jr. B team there.  He feels that he was distracted a bit by the even bigger city and didn't put as much effort in as he could have but he still graduated in 1979 and went home but found there were no opportunities on the Island.  So he joined the military.
His first reaction to that life was that too many people were bossing him around so he worked as hard as he could and got promoted, first to Master Corporal and then, within 5 years, to Sergeant and he could tell some people what to do.  That was a challenge too, though, because he'd been promoted quite quickly and was in charge of people who had been in a lot longer.
He spent 5 years in Germany doing Cold War training and exercises and became a paratrooper.  He enjoyed travelling around Europe which he would not have been able to do otherwise.  Back at Petawawa an exercise went wrong - jumping in high winds caused equipment to crash, ammunition to go off and many troops to suffer broken bones.  He crushed two vertebrae and has experienced surgery and pain.  He stayed in for another 5 years but mustered out and joined the police on the Island.
The military gave him a lot of what he has to offer to the community and it helped him in his policing career - dealing with people he knew and earning their respect.  Eventually he ran for councillor and concentrated on water issues which has resulted in a high quality treatment plant being built.
Now, as Chief, he's facing other challenges.  Access to the Island is the biggest.  Many studies and reports have been produced and much consultation has been held with the feds.  A bridge would be the solution but it's way more expensive than another ferry and even another ferry is too expensive right now, apparently.  Funding is going to other priorities so they live with a 50 plus year old boat that's on its last legs and can't handle the pressures of summer traffic.
With guaranteed access they could develop a forestry industry, enhance their tourism and cottage traffic, explore their achealogical sites and build an economy.
Chief Minogue says he wants to make people more familiar with the Nation - many people still don't even know they're there but, he says, 'we're your neighbours, we spend money here for services we lack' and we should be talking more.
They are reaching out - to a Chinese firm for investment, for instance - but everything has to go through the feds which is a real obstacle.  They are concluding a land claims agreement for the land they gave up in Coldwater and will have cash to hand and will want to work with their neighbours to improve life for all on the Island.
The population there now is about 1,000 but it goes up by 3 times in the summer.  They have formed a Youth Council to work with the Band Council and to bring their ideas and concerns forward and they are working on a new strategic plan.
Ron offered the thanks of the Club to the Chief for his visit.
Beausoleil First Nation Bill Molesworth 2012-08-15 00:00:00Z 0

ADG Joyce

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 31, 2012
Ron introduced Joyce who moved from Boston in 1966 to Northern Ontario.  She is an economic developer and has worked in that field in Timmins and Midland though now she concentrates on designing and making jewellry.  She has three sons and 6 grandchildren.  Her involvement in Rotary started in 1998 and has been strong - serving as secretary, president, on committees, on wheelchair distributions and exchange visits.  She's a multiple PH Fellow, a Benefactor and has won the District Service Award.  She also serves as co-chair of the CLH campaign.

Joyce said the theme for this year's President - Sakuji Tanaka - is Peace through Service and he is sponsoring 3 Peace Forums in Berlin, Honolulu and Hiroshima through his year.  He is also working on a new strategic plan which will concentrate on strengthening the Clubs through more Public Relations, increased humanitarian service and emphasis on the core values.
The Foundation Chair is Wilfred Wilkinson who is concentrating on encouraging District projects, Polio eradication and recruiting Benefactors who support the Foundation through bequests, which Joyce encourages us to consider.
District Designated Grants, such as the one that helps us with our Hamper Nights, will continue but the Matching Grants program will be redesigned for July 2013.  Grants will be made available for PR projects.
The Focus of Rotary will be Peace, Disease, Water, Children's Health, Education and Literacy and Economic and Community Development.

John Gardner is our new District Governor and he is encouraging members to access the web site to review and update their own records and Clubs to promote their events and activities.  He is also promoting courses for members and working on plans and projects both short and long term.  Joyce repeated that it's important to maintain our information on Club Runner so the Club can maintain contact and can rely on the reports generated for planning purposes.  As she points out our Club actually has three genders - male, female and other - so check your account.

Joyce is also excited about a new District Project which involves partnering with Georgian College to teach indigenous people their languages.  Currently only about 2% of first nations people are fluent - the thread was broken by the residential schools - and a closer connection to their language, it is hoped, will strengthen their culture.  The Districit is looking for support for this from the Clubs and the ADG's are presenting the project to Clubs and their Boards.  Opportunities exist to endow a scholarship or support resource development (the recruitment and training of teachers).  Georgian will develop a Rotaract program in conjunction with this initiative.

The next Group Study Exchange will be to Taiwan from March 20 to April 20 and the leader will be chosen in August.  This program will be revised too, for 2014.  And don't forget the District Conference in Ottawa Sept. 20 to 23 and the International Conference in Lisbon June 23 to 26 next year.
ADG Joyce Bill Molesworth 2012-08-01 00:00:00Z 0

Dominican Republic Missions

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 24, 2012
Ron introduced Steve Wallace, the District Service Project Chair and Wasaga Beach Past President.  Steve said he has been involved in this project for a while and is now working to encourage other members and Clubs to join the effort.  As the Project Chair he co-ordinates the project with a single Club that acts as the core.  As core that Club provides financing and organizational efforts as well as recruiting its own members to participate.  But many people from other Clubs and many who are not Rotarians also help, especially medical professionals.
Steve explained that many Haitians moved over the border to the Dominican Republic over the years to work on cane fields but those fields have been shut down, the workers abandoned and their papers lost or taken.  So they are stateless and not wanted by either country.  Children born to these people are often stateless as well and the problem will only get worse.
There have been several trips made - Dave Young has gone on two - and last year the Innisfil Club, which is a very new Club, acted as the core of what they call a HEART mission.  Steve showed a video with highlights of that trip and interviews with people from the Innisfil Club who participated and you can see it is a worthwhile effort.  They are helping build concrete block residences and they contribute chickens and goats in an effort to make the people more self sustaining.  Doctors and Dentists have gone along with others who help them or who help with construction or distributing clothing etc.  Last year's trip took 70 hockey bags full of clothing and other basics as everything is needed.
Those on the video reported a sense of accomplishment and admiration for these people who maintain an enthusiasm for life in terrible conditions.
Steve said a trip will involve over 40 people and that much has been done but there's a lot more to do.  He offers his services as a planner and organizer to the Core Club to work on a trip which is already scheduled for the week of March 21 to 28.  He will be the face of it in the District, will help with fundraising, do the accounting and help with recruiting.  He already has a doctor, a couple of dentists and a nurse practitioner ready to go.  Benefits to the Club are the experience and the accomplishment of an international hands on service project.  It is not just writing cheques.
Costs to the participants is $1,300.00 for flights, food and lodging.  To the Club it's a minimum of $6,500.00 but with more more can be done.  That goes to buy chickens and goats, construction materials, tools and medical supplies (about $3,000.00).  Children can be accommodated.  The DR is safe, the lodging is comfortable, there are translators and most understand either french or spanish.
Ron thanked Steve for his work on this project and noted a donation to Polio Plus will be made in Steve's name.  He added that the Board will be discussing Steve's request.
Dominican Republic Missions Bill Molesworth 2012-07-25 00:00:00Z 0

Exchange Students

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jul 17, 2012
Phil introduced Juliette, who will be going home soon, Stephanie, recently back from Switzerland, Samantha, home from New Zealand and Jacob who will be our outbound student in Germany this year.
Juliette has just returned from a two week trip to the East Coast which she found beautiful and very different from here.  Again she made many friends and found it hard to say goodbye.  She said that this was her last meeting with us and it seemed like only yesterday she was at her first.  She feels she has been lucky to be part of this programme and has enjoyed meeting everybody and she thanked the Club for the opportunity.  Jamie Tripp and Phil presented Juliette with a watch.

Jacob said he hadn't left yet and it was already stressful.  He arrives in Germany on Sept. 6 and will be in school the next day but he has already met other exchange students which has been helpful and is working on the language.  He feels it is an honour to be selected and he thanked the Club for their support.

Samantha had been sponsored by the Wasaga Beach Club and went to New Zealand.  She got back on Sunday and it all feels like a dream still.  While it is hard to describe the experience she says that meeting people and experiencing a different life has changed the way she looks at things and changed her thinking.  The scenery in NZ is beautiful and very varied and she had wonderful host families but she thought her school - with no boys - kind of sucked.  All the girls had been together for a long time and were all close friends so getting to know them was hard at first but it all was a wonderful experience.

Stephanie was gone almost exactly 11 months and it wasn't nearly enough - she would have been glad to stay.  She says you can't imagine the experience before you go and how much you'll miss it all when you come home.  Her language problem was compounded by having to speak high German in school and Swiss German among her fellow students and they are, apparently, quite different languages.  The stress was telling and she sometimes fell asleep - in class and once on the train which then took her to another country.

In response to a question about how they'd changed Juliette said she thought she was better at getting to know people, at accepting help and in learning to grow.  She says she is more aware of how much there is to do, how many places there are to go and how important it is to understand people from their perspective and to be less judgemental.  When asked what they would advise others to do Stephanie encouraged us to say yes to everything.  You'll be surprised at what opens up.

Ron offered the thanks of the Club and of Rotary for being such good representatives and wished them well. 
Another question
Exchange Students Bill Molesworth 2012-07-18 00:00:00Z 0

Juiette's Year in Midland

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 26, 2012
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Phil introduced a young lady who needed no introduction, Juliette who will be going home soon.  Her name, which I didn't quite catch all of, has four because her mother's and father's are incorporated.  Her father manages coffee farms - 4 of them - and her mother sells fabrics.  She has two sisters who are both in university.

The flag of Brazil has 26 stars below the line for the States and one above for the federal district.  About 190,000,000 people live there.  The economy is based on agriculture and minerals though manufacturing is strong.  A highlight of life in Brazil are Carnival when people show up 'not so dressed' and which involves a year of preparation.

She comes from Patrochinio, which is in Minas Gerais State.  People went there first for minerals but now the area she's in is noted more for coffee production - the most in the world.  Her school has a fixed curriculum and all the classes are boring but she's already started university, having 6 months of law before she came here.  Getting into university requires passing a series of tests that act to filter out many but in the end students get state support.

Brazil has a wide variety of animals, scenery, food, sporting opportunities and soccer.  We saw pictures.

Juliette had not considered the exchange program and was already applying for university when she started exploring what it might mean for her.  Her parents were relulctant but finally agreed and again she went through a series of tests of general knowledge and Rotary knowledge, a test of English and a psychological test and an interview.  She placed second in the rankings and chose to come to Canada and it has become real to her, she has loved it and she is grateful to all who helped make it such a great experience.

She urged the Club to continue participating in the exchange program because it is such a rewarding experience for participants - what she's learned over one year is more than she's learned in the previous 15 - how to deal with people, how not to be afraid of stuff and how to take on challenges, about cultures and about making friends.  She said it's been an awesome year.

She thanked her host families for their hospitality and thanked the Club as a whole over and over. 

Phil said she will be leaving on a tour of the east coast but will be back for a final visit and farewell - in the meantime he presented her with a Canadian flag signed by all Rotarians present - if you weren't at the meeting there's still room on it - and congratulated her on her spirit and commitment.
Juiette's Year in Midland Bill Molesworth 2012-06-27 00:00:00Z 0

Telling Our Stories

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 12, 2012
We met at the Sports Centre with members of Askenonia and of the Midland Secondary School so our regular meeting schedule was much amended.  After words of welcome from Judy Contin and O Canada, a nod to Queen, Country and Rotary and  our prayer led by Ron the meeting was turned back to Judy.
The primary purpose of this joint lunch was to see a couple of examples of the work of MSS students who have been creating an oral history of Midland by interviewing some of our senior residents.  Midland Rotary has contributed to this work with some funding and individual Rotarians, specifically Dean Nicholls, have participated as subjects.
We saw an edited version of Dean's interview and, as usual, he was not at a loss for words.  His recollections of moving here as a young lad from a pristine countryside and encountering the smells, noise and activity of a large and busy town were interesting and his insights into the Town's development probably very helpful to the students.
Bill Jamieson, from Chrisitan Island, had served in the Canadian Forces as a communications specialist and had been posted to peace keeping missions in Israel, Egypt and the Congo.  He retired from that and worked in Ottawa with survivors of the residential schools before moving back to the Island where he has served as a counsellor and is working on establishing a memorial to those first nations people who have made the final sacrifice.
In comments after the screenings Bill encouraged more communication between the Island residents and those of us on the mainland, saying that we don't know much about each other.  He said he felt that oral history was dying due to inroads of TV and other media.  Dean encouraged us to support the war memorial.
John Faragher thanked the Club for its contributions to the project and the museum for its support, saying the students will continue to be involved and that it is a valuable exercise for them.
Brian, from the museum, mentioned that the longer versions of the interviews are available and will be posted, soon, on line.

Ron reminded us that Wasaga Beach is selling tickets on a Corvette again so get in touch with them about buying one.  And Bill Richardson wants to remind everyone that there will be a vote on June 26.  The International Committee is recommending $10,000.00 for Life4Kids and $5,000.00 for water filters.  The funds are available.

As the meeting departed a bit from its regular rhythm, so has this report but it was an interesting event for those of us there. 
Telling Our Stories Bill Molesworth 2012-06-13 00:00:00Z 0

Jason's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth

Ralph said Jason had witheld information, presumably to include in his talk, so the introduction would be brief.  Jason moved to Midland a couple of years ago from Uxbridge.  His father had been a founding member of the Uxbridge Club and Jason was involved in Rotaract.  He approached the Midland Club and Ralph was glad to invite him to the meetings.  He is the President and co-founder of Home Cooked Solutions, a Web support company.

Jason said he'd been coming to the Georgian Bay since he was 3 months old, to a cottage in the Pointe Au Baril area.  The cottage is hardly luxurious - hard roof camping is what Jason calls it, no electricity, no running water, but he loves it there.  He grew up in Pickering but moved to Uxbridge in time for High School.  Throughout he was involved in Scouting and pursued his love of the outdoors and tried to help others appreciate it too.  He participated in the Duke of Edinburgh Awards program as well.  He went to U of T and joined the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity.  While parties were certainly part of the agenda, this fraternity works to help others - their food drives are very successful and Jason served as Food Drive Chair and then as President of the Fraternity.

He's been building web sites since High School, thanks to a great teacher who was a great encouragement.  He did a site for the school with a friend and served as VP and then President of the Student Council.  His first summer job was working on the web site of Travel Cuts and found that more suited to his temperment and abilities than large class rooms and physics so he left university and took a full time job at Travel Cuts.  He did continue to take courses, finishing a web certification program at Ryerson.

He has been able to take a series of sabbaticals and spend time travelling in between jobs.  He worked at a start up that didn't, quite and then a web site development company.  He and his then girlfriend, now wife, Nicole, took off for 9 months around the world.  Partly for the experience, partly to see how they travelled together and they maintained a web page recounting their trips and looking for input.  They climbed to Everest base camp, snorkled in the Maldives and kayaked in Thailand.  In Slovenia he proposed to Nicole.

Nicole is a U of T graduate in Economics and has work experience in marketing.  She is the VP of their company, in charge of sales, marketing and graphics.  She is volunteering as Chair of the Communications Committee of the Huronia Communities Foundation and has updated all their communications - their letterhead, their web site etc.

Jaons said that between the two of them they are a full fledged web site management company, able to provide marketing, to develop strategies for individual companies and to work to raise site recognition in the Google search algorithm.  They have several clients in Toronto that they hardly ever see like Black and Decker, Adobe, and Kwick Kopy.  Local companies they have worked with include GI Jane and AWEeast which, with their help, has turned their not too active web site inot a major earner.

They both like winter too and snowboard in Quebec and Wyoming. 

Bruce Wilcox thanked Jason for his talk, saying that, as usual, hearing from one of out own is always most interesting.  He said we were glad he and his wife picked Midland and the Midland Rotary Club.

Jason's Classification Bill Molesworth 2012-06-06 04:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 29, 2012
Fred Hacker said this project has become a passion for him as he's seen in grow.  He thinks there's a misunderstanding in the community about the facility and its mandate and operations and wants to help clear some of that up.  He noted the article in last week's Free Press which points out that Midland is poised to become a vibrant cultural community and that it now has a focus, a new centre that will encourage not only outside talent, it will mostly promote local people.
When those locals put on an art show or a play or some other performance it will all contribute to the economy by both developing their skills but also by drawing traffic to the downtown and to the community as a whole.  He added that it has started well with the play Our Town, which is terrific and he says everybody should see it.
As he was talking he showed some pictures of the facility.
The big question people have been asking is why build it at all and he thinks it will complement all that is already here - the recreational, educational and social initiatives that are in place.  The Foundation saw the opportunity to make a physical improvement by revitalizing a key property in the downtown and to stimulate the local economy (as reported in the article mentioned) by attracting new businesses, professionals and creative people.
Every community has to distinguish itself from all the others - branding - and, combined with our geography, health care and now this building, Midland is on its way to doing so.  The MCC will be a home and a focus for the arts, a home for the gallery and the theatre and will be a self sustaining and inspiring year round facility.
The objectives of the place are- to benefit artists and creative groups.
                                                       to be a facility for education and sharing of skills and knowledge and ideas (Quest is already a high quality teaching institution and the Huronia players will be puttin on theatre schools)
                                                       to develop an appreciation for the arts and culture in the region and encourage the vitality of the arts in the community
                                                       to be fiscally responsible - in comparison with Meaford, for instance, which spends 750 thousand on staffing for their facility, most of the operatives are to be volunteers.  It will host weddings and events, for a fee, and will look for local patrons, which all arts groups need.  The facility is paid for and is being given free to the community.
                                                       to operate as a complement to other cultural institutions and groups in the community.
At the moment there are only two employees, the chef, Ivar, and the general manager, Kim.  The theatre is first class with good seating, acoustics and technologies.  Rotary Hall will sit about 300 people in an audience or 150 for dinner, the stage is removable and adjustable and there's a 7 foot piano.
As for operations - it's owned by the Town so it doesn't pay taxes and is leased to the MCC Inc. which is a non profit corporation with a Board made up of shareholders - members of the Town Council, Trustees of the Weber Foundation and members of the public and the arts community.  Space is sublet to the Huronia Players and Quest and there will be funding from rentals and donations.
Fred thanked Rotary for its donation and said he was gratified to know that the Club will be moving to its new home there.  He thinks that is a vote of confidence and as well as giving the Club a permanent home it will make Rotary a presence in the facility and in the downtown.  He said it couldn't have been done without all the wonderful volunteers, John Lister among them.
Tara asked about storage of Rotary archives but that is still being worked out.  Fred spoke to parking, saying that as most events would be in the evening all the lots would be accessible and relatively empty but that there are over 500 spaces within easy steps of the front door.
President's Night will be June 20 and will be held there and the first regular meeting on the 27th will start us off on the new year there.  But on June 13 go to Askennonia at the NSSRC.
The MCC Bill Molesworth 2012-05-30 00:00:00Z 0

Our First Nations Neighbours

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 15, 2012
Janice McLeod said she'd met Ernie years ago when they were both florists and she remembered him for his work on the FTD association and for Rotary.  Janice has been a member since 1991 and a member of the United Church since she was born.  Her grandfather was a minister and a Rotarian and she thinks the two institutions share missions and beliefs.  She said that though she'd worked on projects for her Club it was a trip to Nigeria that focused her efforts.
She remembers Bartlesman writing about residential schools and about first nations residents without running water and she thought about the natives joining the protest to protect the water at Site 41.  The United Church has an Aboriginal Ministry and Rotary is introducing an initiative to give our neighbours a greater voice.
This requires a change in thinking on our parts.  Rupert Ross, a Crown Attorney for first nations justice says they have to look beyond the crime and examine the forces behind it.  His grandfather taught the wisdom of the 5 waves that have to be evaluated as they come together around the point of land:  the winds - creating new waves; the past - waves left over from past winds; the currents - moving the water under the waves; the Gulf Stream; and the Rotation of the Earth - study them all and understand their effects before putting out in a boat.
Janice recognizes that many are disappointed by the image many natives project but there are many excellent ambassadors of that nation that we should pay attention to.  With Lakehead starting an Aboriginal Law school we can hope there will be more.  But the current winds and waves are still affected by the events that preceding generations have experienced.
She asks Clubs to become aware and seek out candidates for GSE's, for membership, for subscriptions to Rotarian and for speakers.  She suggests we try to to think of anyone as them and to ask ourselves what our response to 10 or 12 years of residential school abouse would have been - take a drink maybe?  She is encouraging building partnerships that will have an impact on Canada and our legacy.
Programs - self identifcation - have we members of first nations in our clubs?  Do we invite speakers to our Clubs?  Can we participate in programs with first nations like team building canoe trips?  Can we find first nations candidates for exchange experiences or Adventures in programs.
She says the first nations population is a young one - 50% of them are under 25 and almost 50% of them live in urban areas.  But while we build awareness we have to learn to fit in where we are needed, not push solutions on them that won't fit.
Our First Nations Neighbours Bill Molesworth 2012-05-16 00:00:00Z 0

Signature Project

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 08, 2012
John Lister reiterrated that the Community Services is suggesting developing a project of our own, not supporting others but taking ownership.  It doesn't have to be physical, it could take form over several years and it should be big.  Partners would be welcome and it must make an impact in the community.  The Club must be involved as participants and as funders.  He said we want to take the time to plan this and make sure we are pursuing a goal that the Club agrees on and that is right for the community.  So we need to do some evaluation.
He suggested forming 6 Committees - Health, Education, Economic Development, Recreation, Community Improvement and Environment.  Each will solicit ideas and bring one of them forward to a meeting on July 4.  Each Committee will have a champion who will promote their idea to the Club then.
Two of the ideas will be selected for futher study and research and a final vote will be held at the Fireside of Sept. 12.
There may well be overlap - ideas that seem to fall in more than one area - but that's ok - just champion it and see what the Club thinks.
The champions for each Committee are
Health - Fred Hacker
Education - Bill Molesworth
Economic Development - Hank DeJong
Community Improvement - David Mink
Recreation - Tara Hunt
Environment - Rob Thompson/Sue Hrickovian
Signature Project Bill Molesworth 2012-05-09 00:00:00Z 0

Gord McKay

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 01, 2012
Sue said Gord had been born in Gander, Newfoundland and had worked for the Government, the Bank of Montreal and a sports supply company.  He and Kathy have been married 35 years and they moved here 11 years ago.  Since then he's been active on many Boards and Committees including Out of the Cold and Huronia Foundation for the Arts and has served as Councillor and for the last 18 months as Mayor.

Gord said he and Kathy came here 11 years ago and were struck by how attractice King St. was and the friendlly reception they received in the stores they visited.  He's known ever since that this is a place we do not want to change but, it can't stay the same and there are challenges.  The Town is not growing - only 225 new people in 15 years and development and real estate sales are slow.  The population is aging faster than the national average and the youth population is dropping which means fewer people are working and less money being spent.  The drop in the number of jobs in town has been going on for a while but the recession made it worse, thought there are bright spots.  Manufacturing has lost 300 jobs but health care has added 130.  While we can value the quality of life we have to focus on economic development.

The NSDFC has been working hard and has made a good and thorough analysis of our situation which has been the basis for the initiative the 4 mayors are pursuing - working together to develop a strategy and a vision that reaches beyond boundaries and around the shoreline, searching for a common bond and an economy that is knowledge based with manufacturing, year round tourism and a strong health care component.
In early 2012 the 4 Councils approved the strategy though their commitment was limited to $5,000.00 each.  With that a web site is being developed that will list opportunities and promote the region. 

A summit series has begun with the one in Feb. that focused on health care - what will the health care situation be in 20 years and what will we have to do to achieve that.  It was a first step in becoming proactive and starting to manage the economy rather than just reacting.  A prosperity summit will be held on Sept. 25 to which all stakeholders will be invited.  Tiny is working on an agricultural summit, Tay on tourism

But the private sector needs to be engaged.  The private and public sectors working together.  On May 29 an Economic Development Corporation will be struck and work will start on a long term platform for planning that will reduce the unintended effects of politics and the political cycle.  Midland is also trying to reduce red tape, a Renew Midland effort is being launched, similar to what was developed in Australia but perhaps the first in Canada.  Contacts are being made with Georgian College and a public consultation will be held on Unimen and the gaming opportunities.  A consultation on a signature event is being held, the marine operators have met a couple of times to pursue co-operative advertising and Parks and Rec are developing a Passport to Downtown for boaters visiting the docks.

It's not just growth Gord is pursuing; he says he's looking to maintain the quality of life we find here.  Rotary speaks to Community building and he's looking for help from the Club.

Gord McKay Bill Molesworth 2012-05-02 00:00:00Z 0

YMCA job placement

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 24, 2012
Myrosia is a Certified Image Specialist who works in areas of job development and closely with employers to find the right worker.  She suggests thinking about life changing events we have experienced.  Changing jobs, having a family, graduating university.  In her current situation she's a job developer - the contact between an employer and prospective employees.  She evalulates the position and the people available and develops a 'route to hiring'.  She creates a profile of the employer by doing a hiring needs analysis, then she creates the posting and a plan for the future.  She can help with job descriptions, post jobs on web sites, etc.  She processed 236 last year.  She collects resumers and can do a pre screening and job matching.
The Y can facilitate wage incentives and has made over $100,000.00 available to employers since 2007, which means money coming into the community but also, and more important, the creation of long term jobs and more employed people.
There is also an apprenticeship signing bonus program and job shadowing and placements.
The Y offers employer support through assistance in the hiring process and space for interviews, job fairs, opportunities through the C o C and workshops in recruiting and hiring practices.
Benefits to the employer are the savings of time and money and the greater resources of working with a team in a win win.  They can help develop job sharing plans and they provide bilingual services.

Myrosia has worked with Petra, who worked in HR for a midsized company in Toronto before coming her to take a position with NEBS as a generalist in HR.  Petra said her experiences with Myrosia have been positive, especially in her first days when she was trying to fill two jobs and found that Myrosia and the Y are community based with local contacts and knowledge which proved very helpful.  They are cost effective - free! and there is no sales pressure.  She has experience with employment agencies who care more about placing anyone than finding the right someone.  The staff at the Y are trained and professional with a real interest and understanding of what they are doing.  They offer a flexible and responsive variety of services.  The preselection process saves a lot of time.

The Y works under contract to Employment Ontario.
YMCA job placement Bill Molesworth 2012-04-25 00:00:00Z 0

James Fitzgerald

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 10, 2012
James is a graduate of UCC and Queen's.  He's a publisher and a writer - author of the controversial "Old Boy" that exposed abuse at the College.  Most recently he has published "What Disturbs Our Blood", winner of the Writer's Trust Prize in 2010 and nominated for the Giller and recognized as a memoir of power and candour.

Mr. Fitzgerald described the book as an adult murder mystery.  His father and grandfather were eminent Toronto doctors and at one time he lived with them and his mother - three generations in the house his grandfather built.  At that age he was unaware of his grandfather's international reputation.  His father became a professor at U of T and a doctor at Toronto General and moved his family to Forest Hill and a very pleasant lifestyle.  But in the 1960's his father had a nervous breakdown, suffered from depression and attempted suicide twice.  James thinks brutal psychiatric treatments made his condition worse.
At this point he started asking questions about his grandfather, who nobody discussed, and eventually discovered he had attempted suicide too.  His conclusion that his family were either crazy or dead and that success was something he had mixed feelings about.  All his life he has suffered powerful dreams, nightmares concerning the house and at 33 he sought help and eventually started to release 'generations of untapped grief' and gave himself permission to examine his inner life.
His grandfather had been the founder of Connaught Labs.  He was the youngest person on the U of T faculty and a colleague of Banting and Best.  100 years ago medicine in Toronto was third world quality.  The city was rife with disease, typhus etc. and mortality was 20%.  Diptheria killed thousands every year and though there were some drugs they came from the States, they were expensive and there was no guarantee of effectiveness.
His grandfather spent the years 1910 to 1913 travelling the world and studying and he learned to manufacture vaccines and he came back to Toronto and persuaded U of T to participate in producing these for free for the poor.  In 1914 there was huge demand for vaccines for the troops going to Europe and Gooderham contributed land and funds and during the war the Labs produced millions of doses.  In 1921 they started producing insulin.  He also worked to eliminate diptheria in Toronto and Hamilton and came to the attention of Rockefellor who helped him open the first school of public health in Canada - only the third in NA.  In one generation he had taken public health in Toronto from a backwater to a world leader.  By his 30's he was Dean of Medicine at U of T. and became a world traveller and lecturer but he died in 1940.
James knew nothing of this growing up and his research only gave him the public face - he knew nothing of his grandfather's inner life.
A visit to the old Lunatic Asylum at 999 Queen St. brought him to some letters, given to the institution a week before by the heir of the recipient, a past director of the Asylum.  These were written while he was in a US institution, suffering from depression and dying.  These gave James his first insight into the mind of his grandfather.
He recognized the voice of his father  in the 60's in the voice of these letters.  Two incredibly successful men who were suffering from loss of status, of work, of money.  And there was a third voice, his own.  Material here could not be invented - it was a story that needed to be told.  A final piece came from a doctor in his 80's living in BC that his mother sent him to see. But that part is in the book.

Sue thanked James for his visit and made a donation in his name to Polio Plus.
James Fitzgerald Bill Molesworth 2012-04-11 00:00:00Z 0

Community Services

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 27, 2012
Britt was pleased to present a cheque to Kate Hunter for Shelter Now's Community Kitchen Programme.  85% of their clients have mental health issues and this program aims to help them develop skills and healthy eating habits.  The staff and clients have planted a garden and are planning meals.  The Club is contributing $2,500.00.  Kate expressed thanks on behalf of the Board and Staff and residents of Shelter Now and said the programme would be starting now.

Britt also asked for votes on $5,000.00 for a bed lift for CLH and a commitment of $10,000.00 a year for 3 years to Physician Recruitment.

Britt asked John Lister to discuss a concept from the Community Services Committee.
John reported that the Committee has been exploring the concept of a Signature Project, one that would be significant and would address a community need.  Generally, he said, the Club supports physical projects, like trails, bandshells, buildings, which are built and then left.  Sometimes the Club does virtual projects, like mentoring.  But what they are suggesting here is a multi year project with everyone involved - as much as a million dollars over time and engaging partners and matching grants and donations.

Rotary would drive it and make the approaches to the potential partners and supervise over the long term.  He suggests researching needs by asking the NSCFD, the Hospital etc. and find priorities that the Club can address.  Suggestions can be brought forward over the summer and final discussions can be held in the fall.

Fred Hacker noted that while this could be worthwhile such a project should not take away from the traditional areas of service and the various programs the Club has traditionally supported.  He also suggests that sufficient time be taken to establish the project's goals and objectives clearly.  Hank asked if there was anything in the Visioning exercise and Aaron Ledlie suggested members review that document.  Bruyce Wilcox reminded the Club that Rotary had been instrumental in the founding of both CLH and Rosewood, important organizations that are now self sustaining.  Steve noted that Barrie Clubs had built the Rotary House there.  Lister agreed that such projects can be done and that it could invigorate the Club.  He asked for ideas to be brought forward to the May 2nd meeting or given to Community Service Committee members.  Ron said it will be discussed by the combined Boards at their next meetings.
Community Services Bill Molesworth 2012-03-28 00:00:00Z 0

John and Cora in the Philippines

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 14, 2012
Jamie Tripp introduced John, who has been a Club President and a DG and is now with the Collingwood Club, a Paul Harris and a Benefactor.  Cora was a member of a Club in the Philippines but now belongs to the Collingwood Club as well.

John reminded us that he had seen the city dump outside Cebu in 2005 was watched the kids picking for food and celebrating the discovery of a load of hot dogs.  This changed his life - he felt someone had to go out into the rich world and talk about this.  Within a year they were feeding 4,000 kids a day.  Then they closed the dumps and the kids became street people and they started a back to school program because, as Kofi Annan said, the road from misery to hope is education.

First they find a sponsor, then a scholar willing to learn and then appoint a mentor to observe and assist.  $50.00 a year is all it takes and they have 1,000 in the program now.  But many have never been to school at all and don't know how to start.  So they started an alternative learning program that uses computer training remotely run by teachers in their spare time.  One group has seen 200 kids go far enough to be employed and they bring the money home and help educate their younger siblings.  The government helps by running the tests that certify graduation.  They are trying to expand this program beyond Cebu.  John feels that if they can stay where they are the migration to the city might be curbed a bit.  Rutal poverty to urban poverty isn't progress.

John feels that what we do for others will live on and you can see that he and Cora are leaving a legacy.

John also reported on two recent disasters they've suffered there - the floods that washed houses away with families sleeping in them.  Short term help arrived fairly quickly but long term is always problematic so they have raised funds from Clubs and through matching grants to organize over 10 40 ft. containers full of supplies that will be going soon.  And last week they had an earthquake that left severe destruction in its wake.  They are helping with surgery equipment and have arranged for a fire engine to be delivered.

Jamie thanked John for his presentation and his dedication and announced a donation to RI International has been made in his name.  Bill Richardson presented John and Cora with a cheque for $2,500.00 for disaster relief and John promised to double and triple it through matching grants and thanked the Club for its support.
John and Cora in the Philippines Bill Molesworth 2012-02-15 00:00:00Z 0

Kathy Kowalski's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 07, 2012
Kathy said this was her second classification with this Club - back in 1002 when she was Kathy Warlow and only the fourth female to join.  She was born in Toronto in 1963 to parents who had emigrated from Hungary in 1957.  Her mother was a nurse from a city on the border of Austria and her father was from the country who trained as a botanist and an accountant.  He had been able to help make the family farm more profitable but after the Russians came it was all lost.

He stole a military truck and a uniform and, using fake papers and language skills, managed to drive across the border when he was 27.  Her mother's brother had gotten lost in the turmoil and her mother was sent to find him but she got swept up in the refugee movements and ended up walking into Austria.  They both lived in a refugee camp for a couple of years, which was where they met.  Leaving was a lottery.  Some countries were accepting refugees and when a boat arrived and if your number was drawn you were off to wherever.  Her father was selected but he wouldn't leave without her mother but they weren't married and it wasn't allowed.  Of course there were others in the same situation so in the end there was a wedding ceremony for 300 couples and when the next boat came it was off to Canada.

Her mother was sequestered in a TB sanitorium on arrival in Halifax and her father laboured but after a year 3 couples bought an old car and, with the windows open in winter to avoid the smoke from the engine they drove to Toronto.  They lived in the Bloor Bathurst area and her father worked maintenance at the Lord Simcoe Hotel and her mother worked in a nursing home.  Kathy's brother George was born in 59, Kathy in 63 and her other brother, Peter, in 70.  They did a lot of camping and came to this area a lot before buying land and building a cottage. 

Kathy moved her permanently in 84 and launched an unsuccessful business and went back to Toronto but realized how much she missed it so after becoming a massage therapist in 1990 she came back and started a business and did some teaching.  By now she was a single mother to Jason and James - Jason is in business and currently is in Vietnam.  James is in his second year at RMC.  He was a magician at 10 and worked through high school.  Even though he got great marks in school here he had to do a lot of catching up when he went to Kingston.  Kathy was critical of his education here.

She and Mark Kowalski were married in 2006 way up a slope in Banff.  They like adventure and scuba and climb when they travel, do cross fit training.  She showed a short film of her spa which is doing well and has a great staff. 

In answer to a question she told us her uncle ended up in England and her parents in Sweden.  She said she hadn't spent a lot of time on her business or on all the sorts of things she could of told us because she wanted us to know about her parents and what they had gone through and accomplished.
Kathy Kowalski's Classification Bill Molesworth 2012-02-08 00:00:00Z 0

The Railway Comes to Midland

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 31, 2012

Jamie stepped up to fill a hole in the schedule, so thanks for that.  Back in the day, as they say, Port Hope had aspirations to supersede the upstart community of Toronto and felt that if it had access to the interior of Ontario and to the lakes above the falls it would succeed.  In those days every town wanted a railroad and plans were often drawn that never got built.  One such example was the Port Hope to Peterborough line.  But a line through to Lindsey did get finished in 1857.  A line from Cobourg went to Peterborough got built by using a trestle over Rice Lake but that failed too.  Eventually the Port Hope line struck a branch off to Peterborough.

Adolf Hugel, a Port Hope business man, bought this railway in 1871 for $250,000.00 with the vision of expanding it to a regional network but the recession of 1873 depressed commodity prices and construction slowed.  Hugel's Land Company, though, started surveying the Midland Town Plan in 1872 with Midland Ave., which ended at the site of the station, expected to be the main street.  The tracks finally arrived in 1879 but by then Hugel's health was failing and he passed the management on.

Railways didn't actually make a lot of money - the money came from developing the land and selling it, from shipping to the people that bought the land and from shipping frieght which, in those days, was raw materials.  Lumber - the Cook Mill was built in 1871, wheat - the first mill was proposed in 1880 and iron and coal all passed through Midland.  By 1876 the line owned 23 locomotives, 250 frieght cars and 50 passenger cars.

Hugel came from Alsace to the States in 1853 and then moved to Port Hope in 1863 and bought into the Railroad in 1872.  George Cox, who started as a telegraph operator, found his strength was selling, especially insurance and became the richest man in Ontario and one of the richest in the country.  He owned 14 different financial institutions in Toronto late in the century and died in 1907.  He invested in the Midland RR and became President, overseeing a rise in the stock price from $0.70 to $4.00.  Midland had a station that burned down and was rebuilt and then torn down to be replaced  and torn down again.  As it was at the end of a line it had a roundhouse for turning the trains around.

Jamie had a marvellous variety of photos showing views of the harbour, the docks, the industry and the town as well as a selection of shots of trains and train wrecks.  Eventually the Grand Trunk bought the line and that was incorporated in the CNR.  Of course the small lines have mostly disappeared but Midland can still point to the heritage of its rail history and now we can appreciate all the green space down by the water. 

The Railway Comes to Midland Bill Molesworth 2012-02-01 00:00:00Z 0

Bill Leeming on Wolves

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 03, 2012

Sue introduced Bill as a wildlife researcher and columnist with wide experience in the field.  He said it was an honour to be invited and that, though his grandfather had been a Rotarian for 50 years and was a double PH this was Bill's first experience of Rotary.

Bill has been researching wildlife for 25 years and has concentrated on wolves, as did his mentor R D Lawrence.  Although he has actually owned wolves, or hybrid wolves, he emphasized that they are not domestic animals.  Although some people might think they would be cool to have, it usually does not end well.

There are 7 distinct species of wolves, divided into another17 subspecies and they are all at risk.  The Eastern or Algonquin wolf is a reddy tawny colour, brighter than the Grey.  Range in Ontario runs from Manitoba to Quebec in an arch that reaches down below Parry Sound so though wolves may be spotted around here they are probably just visiting.  Animals in the southern part of the range are generally smaller than those further north and females are smaller than males.  Animals in Ontario might run as heavy as 90 or 95 pounds but some in Alaska might reach 140.  It's all dependent on environment and food.  They eat a variety - from large ungulates like moose, deer and elk, down to beaver, rabbits and mice.  They will cache a surplus.  The biggest difference between wolves and coyotes, apart from the fact that wolves are bigger, is that a wolf will carry its tail horizontally while a coyote carries his curved under.

Wolves can range over 200 to 500 sq. kms.  Alpha pairs mate for life.  Their eyes glow because their retinas reflect light which enhances night vision and they can exert a jaw pressure of between 600 and 1,500 lbs. per sq. inch, breaking up bones.  They can hear as far as 6 miles - about 30 times better than humans - and they can smell 100 times better.  A howl lasts about 10 seconds and is used to protect territory or a kill, to seek a mate, to call a pack together, to warn of intruders or simply out of happiness.  They start howling at about a month.

Natural threats include disease and injury but their biggest threat is from humans through hunting, poisoning, road kills etc.

Bill showed a selection of pictures of wolves he has studied or owned and expeditions he has been on. 

Bill Leeming on Wolves Bill Molesworth 2012-01-04 00:00:00Z 0

Council Rock

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 13, 2011

Jamie Hunter said there is a fascinating piece of Ojibway cultural history - a rock - out near the southern end of Awenda Park.  The Ojibway occupied the northern part of Georgian Bay, generally, for between 5 and 7,000 years while the Huron were in the southern.  Jamie showed some slide of Paul Kane paintings that were done around here that showed life when Europeans were first traveling though the area.

By the Treaty of Paris in 1763 all the land rights were vested in the first nations and transfers had to be negotiated.  The British surveyed and entered into treaties.  One involved a series of discussions regarding the purchase of the peninsula that is now Tiny and Penetanguishene between the British and the Chippeway, which is recorded by the carvings and glyphs on Council Rock made in 1793.

No one knows why this rock was selected though some suggest it might have seemed anthropomorphic.  It is on a high point so it might have been a focal point for the natives.  The names of the surveyors and the translators and the totems of the nation chiefs have been carved into it.  The area purchased, the Penetang purchase, covers all of what is now Tiny and Midland and went for 101 pounds.  It was the first surrender on Georgian Bay and the rock is a rare and permanent record of the transfer.

Jamie thinks there are too many details for it to be a fake, though they are still researchin it.  It was discovered by a man studying the lichens which had covered it so it was obvious it had been undisturbed for many years.  There are many examples of rock art in our area but this is unique.  Following this purchase there was the Nottawasaga Purchase of 1818, which covered most of Simcoe County, the Williams treaty of 1923 which gave hunting and fishing rights to the Crown and the Coldwater negotiations which saw a payment of 408 million for properties that had never been ceded.  Currently all of Orillia - 110,000 acres - are under negotiation and have been since the 1950's though it seems a conclusion might be close to being ratified with a vote to follow. 

Council Rock Bill Molesworth 2011-12-14 00:00:00Z 0

Darryl Thompson - Chiropractor

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Dec 06, 2011

Darryl said it was an honour to come to the Club.  He has a passion for getting out to the community to inform and to change lives.  He thinks people enjoy different lifestyles and suffer from different issues but health is the most important - when it goes our world crashes.  Canada is fortunate, he says.  We are cutting down on smoking and drinking, spending on diet and exercise, have the best doctors and hospitals, are spending billions on research into cancer and heart disease, have access to drugs.  With all this we should be healthier than we are.  Cancer, diabetes, and heart disease rates are on the rise.  We rank 72 so what are we doing wrong?

Partly it's baby boomers entering a critical time.  Doctors are overloaded with tests slow and appointment and wait times long.  There are too many patients.  The number one killer is adverse reactions to drugs - both prescription and non-prescription.  Seniors are often taking too many pills - an average of 11.2 a day and an average 35 year old is taking 5-6.  Drugs are introduced to massive profits.  An arthritis drug, Viox, made 12.5 billion in profits before it was taken off the market for causing thousands of deaths.  The company paid out 6 billion and still made money.  Drug companies don't want you to get healthy.

He says he sees suffering all day every day and that chiropractors can help but that doctors don't know enough about it and that the PR should be better.  He says 80% of his patients are people who have come to him as a last resort - medical rejects.  He doesn't put things in or take things out and he thinks he can help these patients.  The brain controls everything and all messages to the rest of the body go through the spinal cord which is housed in the spine.  When the spine goes out of alignement it can wear down faster or put pressure on part of the cord resulting in pain.

The spine is curved and loosing the curve puts measurable pressure on the cord and any amount of pressure can cause damage.  The body has remarkable powers of healing but when it needs help - only maybe 10% of the time - he says taking the pressure off is better than drugs.  He admits that it seems simple, to simple to be true, but, he asks, do drugs address pressure?  He says there is always more to learn and there's a ways to go but the simplest thing to do when the lights go out is to go to the fuse box. 

Darryl Thompson - Chiropractor Bill Molesworth 2011-12-07 00:00:00Z 0

Ron Shulman Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 22, 2011

Sue introduced Ron, one of our newest members who is proving to be, in Sue's term, enthusiastic.  Ron has volunteered to take on the Auction. 

Ron demurred, suggesting he was pushed.  He also expressed nervousness at the prospect of both talking about himself and about answering the questions 'who am I and why am I here?  However, once he got started....

Ron was born in Montreal and moved to Toronto at the age of 10.  When he was 12 he went to the Laurentians to visit friends and discovered boating - a 16 ft. lapstrake with a 25 horse that they spent every day in.  At 16 he and a friend went partners on an 18 ft. cruiser they docked at Waubeshene and Victoria Harbour, his first exposure to this area.  It had a Chrysler motor which broke down on a regular basis but when it ran they went everywhere - no maps, no plans.  They didn't get arrested or die so it was all good.  He sold his share to fund school and went to Waterloo.

His first summer job was as a labourer in a furniture factory and he observed a high rate of breakage on the line and suggested to the owner that things could be done better.  Apparently his approach was not welcomed but it set the stage for a life as a consultant.  He took an undergrad in psychology and was accepted into a doctorate program but decided it wasn't for him.  They let him out with a Masters in Social Psych and Research Methodology and he was looking for work though he really didn't know how to do anything.  He got a government job in Welland, joined a consultancy firm to work on reducing shrinkage, and after Concordia spent some time trying to determine if prospective employees were crazy.  But his worst job ever was with a bank developing a program to teach managers to manage.  He had a two week program and a first morning with 612 slides scheduled but arrived to find the student from Newfoundland had treated the class to screech the night before and by slide # 8 they were all asleep.  He taught that course every 2 weeks for 6 months.

Then he went to ManuLife as Director of Organization.  Then the company was wealthy, full of bright people and just entering into computerization.  His job was to study changes.  When they bought Dominion Life it was like, he says, putting killer whales in with seals but what Dominion offered ManuLife did not so they had to get the two groups to work together.  It was a great experience for a young person but he faced the risk of promotion and a transformation into an insurance person so he quit and started his own firm which ManuLife gave lots of business too through the mid 80's.

His craving for boats resurfaced and he and his dad bought one jointly - two obsessive compulsives.  It lasted a month so he bought the boat he still has, a 1968 wooden Chris Craft.  His wife wouldn't sleep on it though so they bought a cottage on Couchiching and then started a house in Midland.  His business grew - he was consulting with hospitals, which led to manufacturing and he travelled extensively but they came up here whenever they could and he felt he wanted to become a part of this community.  In 2005 he sold the controlling interest in his business though he continued to work for them for a while - a year and then they fired him - so he went back on his own but the travel and pressure was hard.

Ron Crane invited him to the Mary Muter lunch, which he thought was incredible and he was impressed by the people he met.  He wanted to join but Ron wouldn't let him but when he stopped working Ron relented.  He thinks it is important to put back into the community and he has watched this group and, as a tough critic, he has been impressed by the work the Club does and says he is terribly honoured to be a part of it.

Sue offered her thanks for Ron's talk and announced a donation in his name to Polio Plus.


Ron Shulman Classification Bill Molesworth 2011-11-23 00:00:00Z 0

Shirley Trudeau

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Nov 08, 2011

Bill Richardson introduced Shirley, a graduate of MSS and St. Joseph's at McGill.  She has served for 35 years at Pen. General and at Huronia Hospital in the operating room and retired in 2000.  Finding that slow, she worked for 5 years with the Simcoe Muskoka Health Unit.  She has volunteered on 11 missions abroad, on which she takes travel packs with sufficient medications for 1,500 prescriptions.  He latest visit was to the Yucatan.

Shirley reports the Yucatan is very hot.  The group she travelled with this time was relatively small - 5 from the US, 5 from Canada and 2 from Mexico.  There was a pharmacist who though valuable as a linquist and translator turned out to be a talker and a doctor who is retired from practice in the States and who spent as much or more time proselytizing as he did diagnosing.  

There was a physiotherapist, a physician's assistant which would be like a nurse practitioner here, an opthamolagist and a dental assistant.  As a regular nurse Shirley usually finds herself assigned to triage and to doing first aid, changing dressings and etc.  When the mission arrived they found the locals had not prepared and there were shortages and confusion at customs, especially over the travel pack full of drugs.  She finally just left them to it at midnight but the drugs did make it to them later.  They had to buy air mattresses because their hosts at the mission, a group of 7th Day Adventists, didn't have enough beds.  Their practice is a daily devotional and Shirley found them to be more evangelical than her regular worship.  When her turn came she discussed the value of a friend as a gift to self.

They visited a different village each day and again they suffered from poor advance planning but the President of the Yucatan and a local mayor had raised some funds and arranged for 3 service trailers to be made available, including one for opthamology.  She says that their diet is so poor they actuall are starting to have an obesity problem - tortillas and pop.  Soda is cheaper and cleaner than the local water so diabetes is spreading and there is a need for much better education.  But she always found the people to be grateful, which she says is not always the case here.

Shirley says there is still much to do and she thanked Rotary for help on her various journeys, saying that volunteers work with the grace of others.

Bill presented a cheque for $1,000.00 to help defray the expense of the travel pack and to help her daughter who is picking up Shirley's torch. 

Shirley Trudeau Bill Molesworth 2011-11-09 00:00:00Z 0

DG Brian Menton

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 11, 2011

Joyce introduced Brian and Dorothy as old friends, people she had met on a wheelchair exchange to St. Lucia.

Brian has an MA from Queen's and has spent his career in education in the North, including stints in Frobisher Bay and Yellowknife and in both places he was a member of Rotary.  He and Dorothy retired to a B & B in Haliburton and joined the Club there where he was involved in the 2002 GSE to Korea, scholarships and the Foundation, and in 2008 he became Assistant DG.  Dorothy has been Secretary of the Club and Foundation Director.  Both have been recipients of many Rotary recognitions.

Brian said he is trying to follow Jennifer Jones' suggestion that we tell our Rotary stories.  He and Dorothy were recently married when they went to Frobisher Bay to teach for 2 years.  27 years later they have spent their lives in small communities remote from the rest of the country.  The Clubs in the North are hundreds of miles apart and don't have the opportunities for joint events or even conferences.  But the two of them worked in the school systems and in the Rotary Clubs wherever they were and raised three sons.  Brian feels you can't just live in a community, you have to become part of its fabric.

Of course a strong family is a base on which to build but Rotary is a family too and both make the community better so he encourages everyone to get involved, engage in random acts of kindness and seek fullfilment.

When they moved south to the Rotary Club of Haliburton they got more involved in District issues.  The trip to Korea was life altering and brought awareness to global issues that can't be ignored.  Rotarians, he says, refuse to fall prey to indifference and he encourages continued support of the Foundation as it works to alleviate disease, provide clean water, improve maternal health, promote education and literacy, encourage peace and conflict resolution and enhance economic and community development.

He and Dorothy were asked to take on this role on short notice and, as Dorothy said, it is an enormous commitment that is having an effect on their children and grandchildren, not to mention their retirement plans.  But she says they believe in Rotary's goals and they made the choice to get involved.  Rotary has supported their family - she felt a tremendous level of support during family illnesses and deaths - and she feels that our lives in Rotary evolve through the many rewards and challenges we experience.  She encourages us all to reach out and make a difference in someone's life.

Brian suggested that Rotary has changed his life again by increasing his experience with new technologies.  He complimented the Midland Club of the tremendous amount of work it is doing and thanked it for its support to the Foundation.

Sue thanked them both for coming and said they exemplified partnerships - with each other and with Rotary.  

DG Brian Menton Bill Molesworth 2011-10-12 00:00:00Z 0

Oral History of Huronia

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Oct 04, 2011

Jamie Hunter explained that, with funding from the Federal Government and Rotary, the museum is working with gr. 10 students from MSS and Askennonia to link students with a resident who has a story.  The students research the events, prepare questions and interview the subject while Brian video tapes it.

Brian said the first reaction of most who are approached is 'why me?'  But everyone has a story and when they start it always turns out to be interesting.  The students, who are often typed as lazy and disinterested, are keen and get involved and prove to be very capable.  Therefore this program highlights all ages and works to cross generational lines.  Brian showed selections from two of the films they have made.  

The first was with Lydia Ehmcke who is a German and whose family were in the path of the Russian troops.  She was working and had managed to get some sort of pass.  Her father came home from the front and told her to go at the first opportunity before returning to the front.  She and her mother and two of her younger siblings got on the last truck out of their town and made it to Danzig and she was the last person to board the last ship out of the port there.  There were thousands on the docks who didn't make it out.

The ship was torpedoed but the crew kept it afloat till they reached Copenhagen on the same day the Russians took Danzig.  She never saw her father or two of her brothers again.  In 1997 word came from the Red Cross, who had been given access to some Soviet era files, that her father had been sent to Siberia and had died in 1946.

The four of them spent two and a half years in camps in Denmark, first in a refugee camp and then at an air force base with barracks.  They were never alone, the food was poor - cabbage and bread - but she formed some friendships she keeps to this day.  

The other subject was Marie Jessup who is from Britain and whose father was fighting in Europe.  She was one of many children who were sent to Canada as 'guest children' to get them away from the bombing.  She arrived through Pier 21 and travelled to Toronto before being placed in a foster home.  Her foster father was quite conservative and she didn't get to go out much.  In 1944 she went back to Britain on a merchant ship - the trip took 16 days because they were evading submarines.  At that point in the war the Germans were using the V rockets - one type she called a doodlebug.  One time she managed to catch the train before the one she planned to take and she arrived safely while the one behind was blown up.  She spent some time in London and experienced clos calls with these rockets there as well.  U

Unfortunately Brian had to cut her segment short for time reasons but if any member knows of someone with a story to tell and a willingness to tell it to some inquiring young people, please get in touch with Jamie or Brian or Judy Contin at Askennonia.   

Oral History of Huronia Bill Molesworth 2011-10-05 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Sep 20, 2011

David Holman is a consultant who has worked widely in adult education and with people with disabilities.  He's been a college principle and worked with social services to promote self reliance in clients.

The Mentorship Program for People with Disabilities is a project being established by our District with funding from Employment Ontario.  David says the problem with most job creation programs is that they start with the Social Service Centres which, despite doing wonderful work, are faced with the problem of 'selling disability' - in other words they have clients they are trying to place.  This program starts with the businesses first.  Rotary is business and if the resource that is Rotary can be established as a resource for these people the matching can go the other way.

 1.85 million people are suffering from a disability in this country and their unemployment rate is way over the national average at 25% due, mostly, to attitudinal barriers.  But electronic adaptors have broken down many of these barriers.  Deaf people can communicate with email, etc., buildings are more accessible.  This program falls in the Clubs' Vocational service which is one that is sometimes hard to find a program for and it goes beyond fund raising to hands on.

The idea is to create a structured and trusting relationship between a Rotarian and someone seeking a job and to encourage an exchange of experience that will help the job seeker build confidence and gain insight.  Dave hopes to use Rotary's networks that reach District wide to seek matches.  He is now working to develop mentorship options that will work on-line, or in group sessions, or by matching individuals or through mentorship by a Club.  I asked him afterwards about funding and he says this is not about a Rotarian finding a person a job in their office - it's about a Rotarian, or a group of them, working with an individual as they pursue a job search and to help by suggesting extra training or experience, if required, or by suggesting networking opportunities or even helping with resumes, etc.  This is quite different from what we are usually asked to do, which is place somebody when we don't have a position or a budget.  Candidates must be in an active job search and will be screened by Dave and a committee at the District before they are placed with a Rotarian.  Dave asks anyone who might be interested in acting in this more advisory capacity to contact him at 416-573-4695 or at

Dave is researching partnerships with educational institutions and he is developing program guidelines which will be published and launched at the Conference.  He is offering a session on the program on the Thursday afternoon if you can make it.   


Mentorship Bill Molesworth 2011-09-21 00:00:00Z 0

Laurentian and Simcoe County

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Aug 16, 2011

Sue introduced Dr. Brian Stephenson who has 'taken the helm' at the Orillia campus.  Before that he worked for the federal government, the University of Alberta and with the Organization of American States.  His BA and MA were taken at the University of Victoria and his Ph D at Queen's.  He's on the Board of the publication Foreign Affairs and also acts as a professor of Business Administration.

Dr. Stephenson declared that Lakehead is Simcoe County's university and he and the staff are working on 5 priorities.

Promotion of Excellence in teaching, research, student experience, and graduate programs.  To this end they have started but need to pursue  much needed infrastructure in both the physical structure of the University and the HR resources.

Maintaining financial sustainability through economization, efficiencies and developing other revenues.

Growth of the campus - from 100 students now to a projected 1,100 in five years.

Internationalization.  At U of A he saw the number of international students grow from 500 to 3,500 as well as growth in the English as a second language program.  Simcoe County is a very attractive location - the shield is iconic overseas - and will be a draw as the program grows.  The exchange goes two way - bring foreign students here but give locals exposure to the students  through exchange programs etc.  He proposes to recruit aggressively.

Community - first to promote economic development by, partly, just being here and pursuing construction and hiring faculty, etc and partly by spinning off research and developing start ups.  They held a conference last year and there are a series of round table discussions being organized that will seek input on how to pursue these ideas.  Second by outreach to the aboriginals - their population is growing and he hopes to harness their energy through special programs and scholarships.  At Lakehead in Thunder Bay over 1,000 of the 8,000 strong student body is aboriginal.

Dr. Stephenson said the Orillia campus is already a presence here and the campus is growing.  Higher education is a $30 billion enterpise nationally and a huge economic presence locally.  Graduates earn an aveage of 75% more than non-grads and that will continue as we move to the knowledge based economy.  Simcoe County has above the Ontario average of High School grads but is below the national average for university with only 12% compared to 23%.  By being here $25 million is already being injected into the local economy and when the school is up to a projected 7,000 students the average budget will be $200 million.  

Look to places like Kitchener-Waterloo where universities worked with the private sector and helped develop industry.  The University brings young people here - 38% of the students are from outside the County, and it helps keep young people in the area - they don't have to leave to get an education.  It provides and accessible and economical alternative to going away to school, helps to reverse the brain drain, develops business and the workforce and will generate higher incomes locally.

The school will pursue partnerships, will promote regional economic development and will create jobs through co-op placements.  The Innovation Management Office will develop companies and intellectual properties and will provide marketing.

His vision is to a long term commitment to educate them here and have jobs for them here.

Sue thanked Dr. Stephenson for his remarks and thanked him for his commitment to the community.  

Laurentian and Simcoe County Bill Molesworth 2011-08-17 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 28, 2011

Phil introduced Nina Phillips, the program director for Katimavik in Midland and a past Rotary exchange student from Charlottetown to Switzerland.

She said thanks for the welcome and that she has been here for a few weeks and is enjoying a new place.  She has travelled and volunteered in several places in Canada and abroad and enjoys new and formative experiences.  She is a recent U of T grad and was drawn to this job because she feels youth have a great capacity to make a positive change.  She feels that volunteering young makes people more mature and more willing to engage.

Katimavik is open to youth between the ages of 17 and 21 and they participate for 6 months, spending 3 months in each of two places.  The groups represent Canada's cultural and regional diversity and the aim is to strengthen the kids interpersonal skills, their environmental awareness, their physical wellbeing and their understanding of other parts of the country.  The household is made up of 12 people and they take care of themselves - cooking (from scratch), cleaning, budgeting etc.  

This is her first experience with Katimavik but the organiztion has been coming to Midland for 3 years now.  As they rotate through there will be 4 different groups staying in Midland during the year.  She works to manage the dynamics of the group and to ensure they are active by liaising with the community and finding them volunteer work.  They put in a 40 hour week and try to involve them in things that play to their strengths as well as things that will teach them skills as the emphasis is on learning.  She has them pretty well scheduled in activities around the area but is always looking for an event or project that could use up to 11 volunteers.  

The kids, as they work here, assess community needs and try to develop a project they can carry out that will enhance the community.  They are billeted on local families for a week or more as a futher introduction to the area.  Each group is welcomed with a party and this one will be held at Katimavik house, at 1034 Victoria St., on July 27.  The program is multifaceted and intensive.

The program is funded by the government but the organization is trying to diversify its sources.  She welcomes visitors to the house and asks that members consider what the participants might do while they are here.  

Katimavik Bill Molesworth 2011-06-29 00:00:00Z 0

John Lister's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 14, 2011

Phil introduced John as a previous member who had to resign from the Club for a while when he was working out of town.  He is active in the community, especially with the sailing club.

John said his Classification is Fund Raising which usually puts an end to conversations.  In fact it's so effective at putting people off he's down to no friends.  He grew up in Don Mills and spent all the time possible sailing on Toronto Island.  He was in a national championship twice and has sailed the South Pacific.  His hobby is refurbishing wooden boats and is now the proud possessor of 7 cause he can't bear to sell them.  In university he developed his own summer job running a sailing school with 18 employees and 36 boats.  He looks back now and realizes he had no idea of liability etc., but he had a good time and paid for school.  Now he's teaching at the Midland Sailing Club and they work with 150 kids a year as well as running the Enable Sail School.  

After school he went to IBM in 82 where he met Donna and they left the company in 84 to travel for a year which stretched into two and ended up costing a total of $15,000.00.  When they came back they were offered jobs at IBM again but they were looking to move and on the map Midland looked good cause it is surrounded by water so they moved here in 87 and have enjoyed it ever since.  Donna took a job in IT at TRW and he was working with the C of C and volunteering at the Wye Marsh when the Marsh lost its government funding.  He offered to help and a career was begun. 

He and Donna spent two years volunteering as teachers at a school in Uganda in the late 80's and when they came back he joined Rotary in 1991 and worked on the Youth Exchange for 13 years which was a magical experience getting to know the kids and making friends for life.  The ones sent overseas he didn't get to know as well but he often hears from them and knows the experience is an important part of their life.  Youth Exchange is a terrific way to promote understanding and internationalism.

John is proud to help raise money that will make things happen that wouldn't otherwise, through the kindness of others.  When he started there were no courses, as there are now and the professional organization was just getting started with about a hundred people.  Now it represents numbers in the thousands.  He worked with Bob Whittam who personfies integrity and heart and in 1993 he formed Lister and Assoc., though he had no associates, it just sounded better.  He had contracts with the Y and the McLaren Art Gallery, learning all the time.  The field is now in demand and more people are moving into it and he acts as a mentor to some.  Georgian College has 6 fundraisers on staff but he was brought in to lead them through a $17 million campaign which has now reached 30. 

The process requires developing an understanding of the client and the community and the golden rule is 'don't ask till you know the answer is yes'.  Nobody likes to be rejected and you have to think about bringing people to the point where they are ready to give.  Hold a meaningful discussion and establish that they care and that they understand the value of the project.  The most generous people are usually the less well off - they give a higher percentage of their income.  We feel comfortable going to corporations but they only give 7% of charitable dollars.  The rest comes from individuals and with them there is only one decision maker.

Fund Raising is becoming more sophisticated.  Currently money ismoving between generations and this is an opportunity for charities.  John recommends that people make giving a part of your life and your budget.  Select specific organizations to give to.  It makes us feel good.  We are privileged and we have not only an opportunity but an obligation to help and we can make a difference.  As Mr. Weber said of a gift to the Y - 'We can't spend the money any better way".  Find the joy in giving. 

John Lister's Classification Bill Molesworth 2011-06-15 00:00:00Z 0

Escape from Kosovo

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 14, 2011

Phil introduced his friend Abban who has been living in Canada for nearly a year and who is experiencing many new things - boat rides, soccer and now public speaking.

He said he came from a small village of 500 and the war started about 50 k's from where he lived when he was in his third year of High School.  He carried a message from his father who, when he heard his son would be speaking, said to say thanks to Canada for its support during that awful time.  Hundreds of thousands were displaced and many are now living in Canada and he is sure that without the NATO interventions the results would have been way worse.

They didn't know much about it at first but woke up one morning to see refugees fleeing through the village and tanks shelling them.  They were all displaced to the mountains for a couple of months and some started slowly to return to their homes to find them all burned out.  Most were brick though so the walls still stood.  There was a renewed offensive the next spring and over 300, 000 were displaced and many thousands were killed, including Albanians.  He and members of his family walked away, travelling at night in a frightened group but they were mostly lucky.  His immediate family survived, though several cousins died.  One 93 year old relative was doused in gasoline but somehow the bastards didn't light the match and he lived.

The area was liberated by NATO troops and rebuilding, with the help of international aid, began.  He volunteered at a local primary school and he was teaching the kids english while improving his own.  The economy is rural and dependent on the land and the animals so when these are destroyed growth comes slowly.

He moved to Canada to be with his wife.  He declared it an honour to be here in a country that respects differences.  He is grateful for the chance at a new life that has been given to him and the 6,000 or so from his home country that have been able to come here.  He wished us all a happy Canada Day. 

Escape from Kosovo Bill Molesworth 2011-06-15 00:00:00Z 0

John van Lahr

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jun 07, 2011

John expressed his thanks for the Midland Club's support of his project in the Phillipines.  He said there is always a need, there are always new clients and there is always the opportunity to expand programs.  He said he had talked last time about the people who lived off the dump.  To give us an idea of what the Phillipines can be like he gave a bit of a travelogue with slides - a beautiful place, beaches, swimming, fishing, Spanish Colonial buildings.  The people are strongly religious and generally very happy.  They are mostly poor but they know how to have parties.

50% of the population lives in poverty - less than $2.00 a day.  His organization is trying to get kids out of the circle of poverty.  They are still working at the dump where they scavenge in a pile that includes hospital waste.  He said after he saw that he has been speaking for them since.  But there are also kids working piecework, sleeping on the street or in pipes, prostituting themselves or being turned into child soldiers.  A little food and a few new clothes is all it takes.  82% of the kids are not in school and without education they have no hope.  Even those who get in have a hard time - out of 10, 2 drop out in the first year, 2 more by the end of elementary school and 3 more by the end of college.  Once they've left, they can't go back because they don't fit in any more.

He and others are trying to provide an alternative to formal schooling.  They are using computers to teach a quicker GED.  Literacy is the bridge between misery and hope, as Kofi Anaan says.  Supplies for these kids comes to about $60.00 a year and when they come out with a High School diploma they are employable.  Interest in the program is growing - they are now teaching in 3 jails and have been able to demonstrate a reduction in the rate of recidivism.  All the teachers are volunteers - only receiving travel expenses.  They had 256 students in the first year and are teaching 1,000 now plus the convicts.

A dozen clubs are contributing now but there is a growing need.  The program is being noticed internationally and John has visited Jakarta to provide advice and the Cardinal in Manila wants to help expand.   They are teaching in some schools remotely through satellite.  Success builds success and the need is great, the budget expandable.  

Phil thanked John for coming and for his work, calling him a world citizen. 

John van Lahr Bill Molesworth 2011-06-08 00:00:00Z 0

Bill Richardson's Classification

Posted by Bill Molesworth on May 10, 2011

Phil introduced Bill by saying that Bill has already made a great contribution to the Club.  He graduated from McMaster in 1990 with a B ED,  and is currently working out of his own office with Investor's Group.

Bill thanked our friends from France for coming over for his presentation and started with some pictures including a classic from 1966 from which he earned the nickname, Mr. Big.  He said his mother is from Richmond Hill and his dad from Toronto but they moved to Midland in 1969 for the life style and his father provided it by driving to Toronto for 25 years.  He has two brothers and thanked his parents for always being there - sports events and all - even though, by photographic evidence, it was obvious they couldn't afford a Leaf's shirt.  Poor Mr. Big in a Habs jersey.

Bill was active in sports through school though the best thing that ever happened to him was meeting Suzanne in gr. 10.  She has a T shirt, again in the photo archives, that says will sell husband for wine so there's cause to wonder.  They have a new dog and two great kids, 14 and 12, Emily and Ryan.  Through Suzanne he met the Bourgeois family, a terrific group and then Dave Mink.  

At University he played football and Suzanne Volleyball and after he started teaching but found the cash flow ended up negative so he moved into financial planning after 3 years and has been at that for 17 and he loves it.  He and his team look at the entire financial planning picture, including tax planning, risk management, estate planning and etc.  They follow an 8 step wealth management plan that is spelled out in the information he made available and he has a great team to help his customers.  

He likes to travel and is able to go to conferences as well as travel with family.  He loves the cottage and the family times spent there and even commutes down from the island to work over the summer.  He thinks he is working towards a balance in health, fitness, work and leisure activities on the Bay and further afield.  He helps coach teams his kids are involved in and though he recognizes he is competitive, he hopes his teams understand that sport is for fun.

He is happy to be part of Rotary and to help Rotary give back.  He feels that he likes to rise to a challenge and that Rotary has already presented him with some, especially being co-chair of Party on the Dock, though he says he couldn't do it without the great foundation left by previous committees and the help of Hank.  It's what he enjoys about Rotary, a lot of people working to a common goal.  He has offered his cottage as the location for this summer's boat in so he looks forward to welcoming everybody soon.


Bill Richardson's Classification Bill Molesworth 2011-05-11 00:00:00Z 0

Fireside April 2011

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 07, 2011

Sue Bannon spoke on behalf of the Midland Area Reading Council.  She said literacy is a critical issue, especially in North Simcoe where over 40% of the population struggle - a number made worse by the recession.  MARC has been struggling to get sufficient funding from the Province for years but Sue reports that the most recent budget promises $44 million to literacy.  She expects they will benefit from this but doubts that they will ever be able to meet the needs of the area.

Even with extra funding the Council still needs support from the community - almost two thirds of their budget is raised locally.  Sue thanked Rotary for its support over the years, esp. with the youth literacy project of 2006-07, an especially successful effort to help prepare elementary school students for their move to High School.  Those participating saw their marks go up by 30%.  She proposed the Club fund an extension of that program at  a cost of $15,000.00.  Questions indicated that an actual budget was not fully complete and that a large part of that 15 would be for operating costs.

Paul Hamelin and Lindsey McNab spoke about the Boys and Girls Club, bringing more numbers and some clarity to a presentation from other representatives of the B & G made to Rotary a month or so previously.  They said Ron Shaw had brought the concept to the area and it had been started with a grant of $500,000.00 from the Town over 5 years.  That funding is winding down and though the Town is still supporting the Club, they will be looking for other sources of funding.

The Club assists youth in their transition to contributing adulthood.  Based on a scale of 40 attributes that contribute to success in that process, most of their young people score slightly less than 20.  The Club helps them enhance the assets they have and seek improvement in some of the attributes they need help with.  Lindsey reported that 236 kids are currently registered in the afterschool programs, that the Club has about 3,700 visits a month and that about 1,900 visits are recorded by teens.  They serve healthy snacks, organize summer camps, March break camps and weekend programmes that teach leadership.  They provide a safe, accessible and affordable place that is open to all.  They were not asking for money but said that if they were, it would be to help increase staffing so they could reduce their waiting list.

After some discussion the membership agreed that we needed more information from MARC and that we did not support operating expenses.

Sue Hrickovian spoke to the car raffle.  Mr. Weber's car, though only a year or so old, is considered a used car and so cannot be offered as a prize in a raffle.  He is willing to see hs car traded in for a new one but that means finding the difference ($20,000.00) up front.  Other costs proposed include printing, advertising, insurance and etc. for another $10,000.00.  They propose trailering the car to events all over North Simcoe to raise interest and to sell tickets.  Members would be asked to help but a part time promoter might be hired to take on some of this.  With a target of 6,000 tickets Sue is asking each member to sell 50.  They will cost $50.00 per or 3 for $100.00.  There will be some early bird prizes.

Sue asked if those present agreed that this was a reasonable approach to a very good opportunity for the Club and the consensus was very clear that it should be taken forward to the Board and then the final plan be presented to the Club.  


Fireside April 2011 Bill Molesworth 2011-04-08 00:00:00Z 0

Seeking Wisdom Through Art

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Apr 04, 2011

Jamie Hunter introduced Russell Nogonash, a member fo the First Nations Band of Georgian Bay and a sculptor and painter.  He entered foster care but left when he was in grade nine to work on construction and other jobs.  He was led to sculpture and now teaches in the 'Survival School' in Calgary. 

Russell said he was presenting a show with Peter Meyers in Barrie and was invited to speak to the Club by Rod, so thanks for the welcome.  He feels it is an honour to share his experiences.  He will be having a show at the Huronia Museum from Sept. 10 to Oct. 10.

He finds himself now reflecting on a new generation of artists.  Finding art was a struggle for him.  He did experience abuse in the foster home and ventured west in 1977 and art has been part of his healing process.  It helps him follow the teachings of his people.  The education he did receive was brutal and scary and he lost the ability to trust, but it was God's wish that he go back to his culture.  He did search for his parents but his father was killed and his mother died as an alcoholic.  He holds an eagle feather as he would a bible, as an assistance to his prayers for guidance. 

It all led to a meeting with Norval Morrisseau who taught him and others to accept events and to love the children.  He could be a stern teacher but he helped them see that life was changing and they needed to adapt to it.  His rock sculptures represent the transformation of these teachings.  By focusing on the traditional stories through his art he is following what the elders teach, which is that we are placed here, from above, to teach the next generation.  He sees the first nation children going out into the western society and some suffer but some come back stronger, following the drums that are the heartbeat of the earth.

He hopes to share the experiences of ceremony, that every day is a blessing and to express his gratitude to Norval and to the world.  Norval told them to take what you have home with you and that the world is better off for artists.  They show the past, the present and the future and help us look to the next generation.  He is also a dancer and travels widely performing.  He designs his own regalia.  He thinks the best thing that happened today was that he woke up, that we should always tell our dearest that we love them and that we should all give the gift of touching, healing, praying and laughter.

Ron offered the thanks of the Club to Russell for bringing his message and for the work that he is doing.


Seeking Wisdom Through Art Bill Molesworth 2011-04-05 00:00:00Z 0

Street Outreach

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Mar 08, 2011

Neil Evenden said that the downtown community had concerns about street people and homelessness for several years and about 4 years ago the Town contracted with Simcoe Outreach Services to have two people work 35 hours a week interacting with these people and trying to help them work in the system and find alternatives.  Unfortunately costs increased and the Town finally withdrew its support.

Neil met with Jim Downer and Council and presented a proposal that reduced the number of hours and the cost - 24 hours a week and $40,000.00 - and two workers under the auspices of the Salvation Army started last June.  These two patrol in all weathers and meet all sorts of people.  The Town has again decided not to support the program further but the Army has enough money to maintain the service till the end of the year.  They are working on funding for 2012.

Denis Laurin said they meet people in their environment, people who are in crises situations, and they develop relationships with them, evaluate their situation and work to help them get into drug programs, transitional housing or whatever.  They've worked with people between the ages of 17 and 75 with a wide range of issues.  They also meet with store owners and visitors.

Many of the people they meet don't fit standard criteria so they help them navigate the system, which is hard enough at any time, and they follow up until they've exhausted all the possibilities.

Gord Davenport reported on one case they've been working on for 5 months.  She was getting support from another individual but he had his own issues and after several years felt he could not help her anymore so he called them from a card they'd posted on the telephone poles.  She was to be evicted in two hours when they first met her so they researched resources but in the short term had to place her in Out of the Cold.  She claimed to have another name and a fiance, she did have arthritis and diabetes and was on meds for mental health issues.  She'd never applied for drug benefits because she didn't know how, she doesn't qualify for a mental health review because her case is not serious enough.  They found temporary housing for her but had developed an infection and was hospitalized.

She gets checks but spends the money in days then claims to have been robbed.  She needs a trustee but she only trusts Gord and Denis so they are still pursuing alternatives.

They see up to 90 individuals a month and the average age is over 40.  Response from the downtown has been positive.

Rod asked if the Club could help.  At the moment Neil thinks lobbying Councillors would be most effective.  They have had some money from Rev. Pendlebury's memorial fund but they need significant support from the municipality.

Phil thanked them all for their efforts and their compassion.  

Street Outreach Bill Molesworth 2011-03-09 00:00:00Z 0

GBGH and Foundation

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Feb 08, 2011

Paul Heinrich offered hs thanks for lunch, for the invitation to speak and for the Club's support over the years.  Planning for renovations and additions is even harder with he LHIN because they have to be consulted as well, even though the hospital has already complied with Ministry and code requirements.  He admits displaying a little impatience on occasion.  They have 2.6 million from theCounty and 2.1 from the community which they hope to leverage into another 8 million from the Province. 

The ED now is seeing over 40,000 patients a year which puts it in the top 40% in volume in the Province and the wait times lead in the Province in several metrics.  The are projecting traffic of 60,000 by 2030.  They plan to add 6,600 sq. ft. to the Department and are reaching out to the community for more partners.  The grand scheme adds 160,000 sq. ft., doubling the size of the hospital in Midland but that is a 200 million project and too much to submit all at once so the are breaking it into succssive, smaller projects.

They will be taking on the accute mental health beds - 20- - and will lead efforts on complex continuing care, both of which are awesome new responsibilities which are challenging and thrilling.

Lois is a director of the Foundation and a ER dept volunteer who thinks developments are exciting.  She said the Foundation is the fund raising arm for capital and staff training costs.  She expressed the Foundation's gratitude for Rotary's support - over 300,000 over 10 years.  She said the hospital had come close in the Pepsi Campaing - 8th ut of 90 - but they would have another chance in March to campaign for 20 more beds.  She gave examples of some costs - $78,000 for a bed, $11,000 for a defib or a centrifuge, 16,000 for an ECG nd 5,300 for a stretcher and on and on.  They are always trying to upgrade and replace equipment and have just finished a 1.5 million rebuild of a filing record system.  Their next fund raising event will be Curl With the Pros soon.

She thinks the high rate of ED use is partly because there are no real alternatives like walk in clinics, partly because many people don't have doctors and partly because we have so many seasonal visitors.  Good wait times even bring people from other areas.

The rebuild at Oak Ridge, at over a half billion, ils only for the forensic an criminal sections.  It won't affect the other departments.  Only Penetang still does short term addiction and accute mental health intake and they are trying to phase it out.  As many, such as suicide attempts, need medical help as well, it is felt they will be better served in a hospital and as they want to keep it local, because the need is here, they are taking it on.

Bill Richardson thanked Paul for taking the time and informing us of progress and Maureen thanked Lois, saying it is fortunate that the community as advocates like her to serve us. 

GBGH and Foundation Bill Molesworth 2011-02-09 00:00:00Z 0

Boys and Girls Club

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 31, 2011

Thom Lackie commented that things had changed in Rotary since he was President in 1985.  Back then it was a well oiled machine - now, he thinks, not so much.  

He and Marie are on the Board and Marie is Chair of the Community Service Committee of the Boys and Girls Club.  This is a unique organization - an inclusive, accessible place to develop the potential of youth - "a good place to be".  Latchkey kids, kids from single parent homes, kids from families with lower incomes often become bored and turn to drugs, gain weight, get pregnant or get into trouble.  The Club offers place to go after school, provides transport or supervised walks, healthy snacks, activities such as arts an crafts, exercise, homework help.  The Club runs camps during Christmas and March breaks and over the summer.  Parents have been extremely grateful and the Club has received dozens of testimonials that demonstrate what it means to them and their children.

They are asking the community to join their dream for the children.  The Club is working to become self sustaining.  It was started by the Town but they are reducing their financial support levels over a period of years which means they have to replace that funding.  They are looking for sponsors of programs with costs that range from $1,000.00 to $12,000.00.

Currently they have 50 members who pay $20.00 to join.  This may not seem like much but it can be a lot to some families.  They charge to impress on their members that ther is a value to it and to encourage continued attendance.  The Board members are volunteers but the staff, 2 FT and several PT staff are paid.  The total budget s #256,000.00.  This includes $29,000.00 for rent.

The number of members increases during the school breaks when the Club runs its special camps.  The Club is open after school Tuesday through Friday and Saturday morning.  

Fred thanked Thom and Marie for their presentation and for their commitment to the Club, saying it is groups like this that make Midland a better place.   

Boys and Girls Club Bill Molesworth 2011-02-01 00:00:00Z 0


Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 25, 2011

Bob Main said he'd been to a Rotary meeting before, arriving in a blinding snowstorm in Rod's Vega.  That was one of the striking memories of his arrival in Midland.  The other was that soon after he got here the Fire Hall caught fire.

Bob quoted a Spanish proverb to the effect that a man dies twice - once at the end of his life and the second time when his name is spoken for the last time.  Geneology is a way to continue our stories.  It started as a way to sort out land claims and inheritences and as an identity - we know who we are by where, and who, we come from.  The Bible pays a lot of attention to ancestry with its begats and the Book of Ruth is basically a family history.  Everybody's ancestors are a part of history and every story is  sort of micro history, all of it joining into the whole story.

Bob's grandmother died comparatively young and his father's memory seemed uncertain so when Bob's questions were not answered his curiosity led to an interest in tracing his roots.  The internet is now a marvellous tool.  It saves trips and time.  DNA can now trace blood types.  His own shows traces of a type from Iran though his family had been Scottish for generations.  Did a Roman legionnaire contribute way back when?

Another source is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints who are trying to reunite families in heaven and have transcribed and copies massive amounts of information - a huge library of records to which they allow anyone access.  They are very generous.  Church records, passenger manifests, military records - they are all on line.  Census records - those that are public - are also easy to access now.  Through a huge commitment of volunteer time all the Ellis Island records are now available.

People are always moving.  Away from hardship or turmoil or to a better life.  Canada's Loyalists were refugees from what was essentially America's first Civil War, the War of 1812.  This can lead to confusion.  Bob said there's a family of Waltenbury's who think their heritage is British because there's a town in England and because they came to Canada as Loyalists.  But originally they were Waltenburgs from Germany, loyal to the Hanoverian King George.  There's a large francophone population in New England descended from economic migrants who had to leave Quebec because the population outstripped the available farmland.  They went to the mills.  The Barnardo Children were orphans who were, with the best of intentions, sent to North American because they were a burden on the limited social safety net of the time in Britain.  Hundreds of thousands of them were sent and some were still coming as late as the Depression.  Many ended up in near slavery conditions.  But each is a story - find the names, find the stories.

Bob found a house in Quebec that belongs to a distant cousin and which has been in the same family for 250 years.  When he moved to Midland he thought he had no previous connection to it but finally discovered that he had 4 ancestors who had worked at Sainte Marie among the Hurons back when.

He invited us all to start.  Talk to him about the internet.  Interview members of our familes.  Get the artefacts and photos organized and put captions on them so you, as an ancestor, can leave your story for your descendants.

Bill thanked Bob for coming and for sharing his enthusiasm with the Club.   

Geneology Bill Molesworth 2011-01-26 00:00:00Z 0

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 15, 2011

Lisa Cameron thanked the Club for the invitation to speak.  As many members are small business owners she thought there would be interest in an organization that could help them promote themselves and thus help promote the local economy.  Shopcity is an umbrella organization tht encompasses 8,000 community shopping guides where consumers can check out information on stores and product.  They partner with the local C of C, the city and with media to promote and sell on line a business directory, to run promotions and to generate increased traffic on business web sites and in the brick and morter stores.

Shopping locally has a multiplier effect - big box stores' profits go to head office somewhere.  Local profits circulate locally and accrue to the benefit of the community.  So encourages businesses to shop among themselves which increases wages and taxes locally.  

This site takes advantage of the tendency of people to research on line and to create a site that will show alternatives to the big box store - that will compete with the big stores, in effect.  They use google ranking to enhance the visibility of local stores over the national chains and they will eventually link their site to the social media, giving the local outlets even more exposure.  It's a good way to reach younger shoppers.

The package includes complimentary profiles, an online store using PayPal, a coupon publisher and help building a site.  Visits can be tracked to measure effectiveness.

Rotary could have a page and collect testimonials, publish online newsletters and link to other websites or to RI.  1,000 visits a day to the home page. Bill Molesworth 2011-01-16 00:00:00Z 0

Water Filters

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 11, 2011

Ron Crane introduced Don Stewart, a member of the Rotary Club of Penetang who is back recently from a trip to Nigeria with a shipment of water filters.

Don expressed his gratitude for the pallet of filters paid for by the Midland Club.  He described them as large buckets filled almost to the top with sand and gravel and then topped with a biological layer that helps catch bacteria.  Many (nearly 30,000)have been delivered, with the help of himself and many others, to Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Honduras and now Nigeria.

His team of two arrived in Lagos and were promptly sequestered in a secure motel as they were surrounded by over 13,000,000 people, some of whom might have presented a threat to two white men.  At 5 am they were loaded into a vehicle for a 7.5 hr. drive over the worst roads he'd ever seen at a constant bone jarring speed of 150 km/hr as they hung on for their lives.  They were welcomed, on their arrival, by the local Rotary Club which was opening its new building and inducting its new President.

He thoght he'd gone just to teach how to use these filters but his first day he was swarmed by officials from all over the country and they even had lunch with a local king.  The filters are desperately needed as over 1,500 children die in the area every month from bad water.  The poverty and pollution in the country are awful, the roads terrible and the government corrupt.  They had difficulties getting the filters in at first.  Everyone wants foreign currency because theirs is debased and heavily counterfeited so no one knows what they are getting.

Water Filters Bill Molesworth 2011-01-11 19:57:27Z 0

Quest Art Gallery

Posted by Bill Molesworth on Jan 10, 2011

Britt introduced Sharon and Nanette.  Sharon has lived for 35 years in Midland and Nanette is the new Executive Director of the Gallery.

Sharon started by thanking Rotary for its donation to the new Midland Cultural Centre.  She said the Quest Gallery had started in 1995 in Penetanguishene when a group of people wanted to learn more about watercolour painting without having to drive too far.  It is now a charitable organization whose volunteers contribute over 7,200 hours a year and which has a Board of 12 from the North Simcoe area.  The Gallery is open 6 days a week from 10 - 5.  Sharon expects the Gallery will be the heart of the new Centre.  The Gallery works to engage and enrich the community.

Nanette and her husband and child are the first family to move to Midland because of the Gallery.  A grant from Trillium is paying for a four year position.  She talked about the education component of Quest.  The Young Artist program is being revamped in anticipation of the new facility.  The philosophy is that everyone is creative and they just need to be encouraged and inspired.  They are working on programs that have youth working with youth and on exhibitions.  

They are planning family events.  So far Quest has taught over 1,500 children and now runs courses for beginners right up to advanced students.  Classes are kept small and all teachers are professionals.  The goal is to achieve accreditation and be recognized as a school for art teachers.  They are working to develop partnerships and have strong ties to other art schools and are working on developing  a course in conjunction with the Parole Board and for seniors' outreach.

Quest sponsors the Art in the Park in Penetang every year, participates in Winterama, runs the Steamroller Art Project, curates the Awenda Inspired show and runs field trips.  This year in Midland has seen membership double and with two galleries in the new facility they expect more interest and more membershps.  They are enhancing their shop with a small artisan craft selection that is doing very well and will be bigger in the MCC and they are selling art supplies so people don't have to go to Barrie.  They are bringing speakers here so, again, people don't have to travel.

Sheila said she shows how art can change a life.  Growing up in Copper Cliff they never heard the word art - it didn't exist in the High School.  She became a teacher of French with two daughters and went to an art workshop and got hooked.   She has led art trips and worked on expedition cruise ships for 4 years where she became inspired by the arctic landscape.

Ron thanked them both for sharing art with the community and Britt presented a cheque for $2,500.00. 

Quest Art Gallery Bill Molesworth 2011-01-11 00:00:00Z 0
Firehall Quote - July 1 Ed Hartley 2004-07-01 00:00:00Z 0
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Firehall Quote - Apr 4

Posted by Ed Hartley on Apr 03, 2004
Your kindness will be remembered long after your wisdom
Firehall Quote - Apr 4 Ed Hartley 2004-04-04 00:00:00Z 0

Firehall Quote - Mar 25

Posted by Ed Hartley on Mar 24, 2004
There's no need to shout if the right words are used
Firehall Quote - Mar 25 Ed Hartley 2004-03-25 00:00:00Z 0

Firehall Quote - Mar 18

Posted by Ed Hartley on Mar 17, 2004
If you can't have what you like, try liking what you have
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Firehall Quote - Jan 22

Posted by Ed Hartley on Jan 21, 2004
A good example by oldsters is a good safeguard for youngsters
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