A lot of people would be a lot worse off if it wasn’t for their local Rotary club and last week the Currumbin-Coolangatta-Tweed (CCT) Rotary Club celebrated a major milestone of seventy-five years of service to the community.
At an event at the Tweed Heads Bowls Club, attendees listened to a tapestry of unofficial stories as well as the better-known tales that captured member contributions since the group’s inception.
Many would associate the CCT Rotary Club with its successful sausage sizzles and Car-Boot Sales, but listeners discovered there was so much more to the Club.
On the night, past Rotary presidents, members of Kingscliff, Banora-Tweed, Burleigh, Nerang, and Mt Warning groups, and Rotary hierarchy, mixed with local professionals and dignitaries. Tweed Shire Mayor Chris Cherry and Gold Coast Councillor Gail O’Neill shared their congratulations and even their surprise at the number of contributions that had been made by Rotary over the years. Local state and federal politicians who were unable attend sent video messages of congratulations.
Major recipients of the Club’s fundraising efforts, Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary CEO Jonathan Fisher, Dr Michael Pyne and the Shaping Outcomes CEO Col Usher, voiced their thanks for Rotary’s contributions and support.
Mary Flynn and a number of women in the room shared living history stories about the time when women were not allowed in Rotary meetings, and how Rotarians’ attitudes softened when numbers diminished and wives were finally allowed to be ‘Rotary-Annes’. Ironically, the event’s host was Sharon Styman, a professional trainer, Board member, and one of the newest female members of the CCT Rotary club.
Dynamite used for Rotary walk
One hair-raising tale described the Club’s efforts as they constructed the Rotary walk around Greenmount Hill in the 1960s, where dynamite assisted their progress around the rock.
Many more current stories were shared including raising $50,000 for a project to buy equipment and materials and to take a Rotary team to Vanuatu to build a school from scratch. The work done with and for the youth in the Gold Coast and Tweed communities, through scholarship support and personal development, was also recognised.
As more stories were heard, one of the speakers commented that she didn’t realise how much Rotary actually contributed to the community. As many discovered during the course of the evening, Rotarians enjoy giving to the community but choose to remain quiet achievers. They don’t like to make a fuss about what they’re doing.
John Giuricin, Club President, summed up the spirit of Rotary as ‘funraising’, capturing the support and fundraising that is regularly provided to the local community, along with the fun and fellowship of the group.