We are a diverse group of action oriented men and women who support local, national and international communities. We are always searching for more action focused people to join us.
Our club includes many really capable and influential people and we meet for breakfast once a week where we discuss community issues, build friendships and plan our action.
We warmly welcome guests at any one of our weekly breakfast meetings to learn more about our community involvement, Rotary and our club.
When Wednesdays 7.30am 8.30am
Where Royal Geelong Yacht Club, 25 Eastern Beach Rd, Geelong.
Cost No cost to attend the meeting while coffee and/or breakfast are available for purchase.
Members and guests are welcome to stay on later for breakfast or a second coffee! There is no charge for the meeting; coffee and breakfast  available for purchase. Parking is available on Eastern Beach Rd, (free up to 9am), or Ritchie Boulevard (free after 9am)
If you'd like to join us for a meeting please contact our President Liz Cairns or Secretary Nick Oakley at nick@oakley.net.au and they will ensure we welcome you on the day.
Nominations are now open for the 2023 Geelong Volunteer of the Year Awards.  Each year, Volunteering Geelong in partnership with the Kardinia Rotary Club co-ordinate the Awards which recognise the volunteer services of people from a wide range of backgrounds and interests.  This includes volunteers in the arts, heritage, youth support, healthcare, environmental care, sport, recreation, emergency services, or any other service that supports individuals in need or the Greater Geelong community.
Five Awards are handed out annually to people who have demonstrated excellence as a volunteer.  Each winner receives $1,000 of which $750 is donated to a charity of their choice.  
Applications close on Friday 13 October 2023.  The Awards will be announced at a function on 15 November 2023.
To apply, please click on the following link.  http://volunteeringgeelong.org.au/volunteer-awards/
The Rotary Club of Kardinia is partnering with the Rotary Clubs of Kew, Brighton North and Central Melbourne to bring Australia’s premier open garden weekend to Geelong and surrounds. Four district gardens will join 33 other gardens across Metro Melbourne and Regional Victoria for this iconic showing of the work of talented professional designers. 
The Geelong and Regional Victorian gardens will be open between 10:00 am and 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday 19th and 20th November. Entry can be purchased at each garden or if you wish to combine the Geelong gardens with those in other Regional Victorian locations, a weekend ticket can be purchased on line.
Further information on both the gardens and their designers can be found on the Garden Designfest website:  gardendesignfest.com.au  or by contacting Ben Systermans bernard.systermans75@gmail.com
Kardinia Rotary has had a successful 2021/2 Rotary Year of Fun, Fellowship, Fundraising and most importantly Philanthropy. Although the first part of the Rotary Year was again impacted by COVID restrictions, meaning meetings on Zoom and very limited Community activity, the latter part of the year was highly productive for our club.
We managed to raise $57,000 through our Dinner Auction, our Geelong Gourmet Goodies Christmas Hampers (supporting a range of local businesses), Event Marshalling (particularly the Surf Coast Trek and Rapid Ascent events), BBQ’s and a range of other smaller activities.
This enabled us to distribute those funds to a range of local community organisations, projects throughout Australia, a number of international projects and a range of Rotary programs. We were also able, to a limited extent, to support our local community, most significantly the Northern Bay College Early Learning Centre, through hands on support. We were also able to support the publishing of the Bushfire art book in aid of the Mallacoota arts community.  For a full list of supported organisations see below.
Even with the COVID disruptions of the last 2 years we have managed to maintain a diverse membership in excess of 45 and in June this year celebrated 30 years of active Community Service.
Kardinia Rotary Club has had a long relationship with the Northern Bay College (NBC) Family Learning Centre. In recent years we have assisted with the development of an interactive childrens garden at the centre including trees, garden beds and a chicken coop. In the last 2 years COVID has significantly impacted our ability to keep involved but with the relaxation of restrictions we have entered into an arrangement to provide regular maintenance of the garden.
Orders are now closed for 2022, any enquiries please contact Phil Heath. 
Beautifully presented gift boxes supporting Geelong region businesses
Great gift for friends, family, staff or clients
Funds raised support Rotary projects
Free Delivery within 50kms of Geelong CBD
Fully recyclable stylish black box
Deliveries early to mid- December or by arrangement
Three sizes to choose from - $120, $80 and $55
On April 2nd, 2022, under cloudy skies, and with a stiff breeze, the Surf Coast Trek was held. Once again Kardinia Rotary Club members were out in force to help with parking and bus management, start line logistics, manning drink stations and following up the field as tail End Charlies. In excess of 650 people tackled either the 38 km Aireys Inlet to Torquay or the 25 km Angelsea to Torquay treks along the Surf Coast Trail. The weather was not ideal and proved more of a challenge than previous years however, in addition to our formal roles, we are able to provide encouragement and support for participants undertaking this challenging walk.
The 2022 event is on track to raise approximately $210,000 to be shared equally between the Give Where You Live and Kids+ Foundations.
The presentation ceremony for the 2022 Volunteer of the Year Awards was held on Wednesday, November 2nd at the City of Greater Geelong Civic Precinct, Wurriki Nyal, hosted by the Mayor Cr Peter Murrihy. Also present were State Member for Geelong Christine Couzens and Councillors Bruce Harwood and Anthony Aitken. Event sponsors Geelong Connected Communities, Geelong Insurance Brokers and Standby Security also participated in the presentation of awards.
18 recipients from 11 different Volunteering organisations were presented with Certificates recognising the work they do in their local communities.
The 5 major award recipients were;
             Kathleen Wade                                    Ocean Grove Primary School
             Raema Ash                                          Outpost
             John O'Hara / Colin Luttrell                Uniting Barwon
             Steve Lee                                             Queenscliffe Historical Museum
             Sandra Vizard                                      Cottage by the Sea.
We congratulate all the nominees and award recipients for their commitment and effort.
Volunteers in Geelong are the backbone for the community.  Working tirelessly in the community quietly behind the scenes to support those in need.
The Rotary Club of Kardinia, in association with Rotary Club of Geelong Central and Volunteering Geelong, proudly presented 15 finalists with certificates of service to the community. 5 nominees were awarded for their service in their community.
During September and October the public and charitable organisations were invited to nominate members of the community who have supported those in need.  These annual awards recognise those individuals who give service above self. This year was no exception with wonderful stories of what is being achieved for those that need our support by amazing individuals and the charities and communities they represent.
The 5 awardees who go above and beyond receive a cheque for $250 for themselves, $750 for the charity that nominated them and a beautiful, engraved glass plaque from Wathaurong glass.
This years awardees are;
Marlene Jerinic               Bellarine Living &Learning centre
Marlene Is the rock for at the BLLC and has volunteered for many years as a Foodbank Volunteer. She is reliable, and inspirational to the staff and volunteers with her energy and passion to help those in need.
She treats all in the community with respect, compassion, and fairness.
Her engagement with the Whittington community is incredible, throughout the pandemic she has been a vital member of BLLC checking on the vulnerable in the community. 
Lauren Arkinsall               Hope Bereavement
Lauren’s calm presence, wisdom and communication skills with her ability to model how she has come through her own grieving process creates a safe place and inspires the participants in the group to tell their stories. Due to her own lived experience with her daughter, she truly understands the grieving participants are experiencing, instilling hope, while providing strategies to manage the trauma and grief that follow a suicide bereavement.
Leonie Hunt                     Uniting Barwon
Leonie’s enthusiasm, commitment and positive attitude inspires the team at Norlane every day. She volunteers full time, taking on everything that comes her way. Her role is primarily administrative and leadership support. She offers ideas on ways to improve processes then helps to implement the changes, enabling the organisation to be more efficient.
Kath Bourke                     Golden Plains Shire
Kath has been President of the Playgroup, Secretary and President of the Kindergarten services. A foundation Board Member of the Bannockburn and District Grants Group, where she is currently Secretary. She is the Junior team coach of the Bannockburn Netball Club, and a player, as well as currently the secretary.
John Mills                        Colac Area Health
John has been a volunteer at Colac Area Health for the last 9 years. He works where and when he can assist in all areas of support.  He comes to Geelong Mums for their supplies when needed, and transports those in need to medical appointments in Geelong as required.
He is a valuable member of the family services team with his incredibly kind, caring and respectful manner.
Without the support of our sponsors these awards would not be possible. Special thanks to Geelong Connected Community who have supported us for many years with 3 sponsorships. Angelo Kakouros from Standby Security who sponsors not only one awardee but supplies all 5 plaques and the certificates for many years and our welcomed newcomer Geelong Insurance Brokers for the fifth sponsorship
For the full list of our finalists and more detail on the awardees please see below.
You can also see photos from the presentation event in the album adjacent to this article.

Kardinia Rotary Club is proud to be supporting the Samaratin House Geelong Independent Living Unit Project. The project has been developed to install 7 independent living units within the existing Samaratin House property, with the objective:
To provide homeless men and opportunity to experience self sufficiency by residing in their own independent accommodation for a nominated period, scheduled for 6 months. The aim of the new accommodation is to provide transition opportunities to their own independent Public or Private Housing, thus breaking the homeless cycle. The guests will participate in a program run by the Salvation Army for which there will be a fee equivalent to affordable rent.
Samaratin House has partnered with a number of Geelong Businesses, Educational and Philanthropic organisations to develop this economically viable and sustainable facility to provide a transition option for homeless men. 
We were delighted to have Brian Sherwell, from the Samaratin House Board, join our meeting on August 25th to detail the project to our club and explain how our financial contribution would be used.
Kevin Larkins, the Community Engagement Manager for the Peace of Mind Foundation (POM), a local Geelong Charity started by a good friend of our Club, Bec Piccone and her brother, Clint following the death of Clint’s young wife from Brain Cancer, spoke at our meeting on August 11th.
The Vision of POM is that every family in Australia impacted by Brain Cancer will get the support they need. Bec's experience with her sister-in-law led Bec and her brother to the position that they had to do something about the little known fact that brain cancer has a huge impact on peoples’ lives and that so little support was provided for them. It has the lowest survival rate except for pancreatic cancer of all cancers - only one in four survive beyond 18 months (after being diagnosed at Level 4). Bec and her brother realised that while research is the best way to improve the survival rate this will be slow and requires lots of money and that there was a huge role and benefit in being able to offer support for sufferers following diagnosis and during their journey with brain cancer. 
Kevin has recently moved into his role at POM and in Bec’s words he is an incredible asset on the POM Team who brings with him a significant record of employment in the Health and Welfare Sector at Senior Executive Level in Victoria, Northern Territory and Western Australia. 
At our meeting on June 7th we were delighted to have James Hattam share with us his work at the Tasmanian Land Conservancy (TLC). The TLC was established in 2001 and from humble beginnings has grown to be one of Tasmania's largest landholders, working in nature conservation projects across Tasmania, including King Island. James shared with us the range of ways that the TLC operates and funds its operations.
It has as its vision for Tasmania to be a global leader in nature conservation and works directly on properties it owns, through existing landholders and purchasing and reselling important conservation value land to conservation minded new owners.
The Tasmanian Land Conservancy website is Tasmanian Land Conservancy (tasland.org.au)
Rebecca Lester, Marie O’Dell, Robert Hodgson, Bree McLennan (with apologies from Luke Kelly) joined us at our meeting on May 26th to share the findings of their Leaders for Geelong project - Loneliness in Geelong.
The project was carried out on behalf of Barwon Health with the following brief;
To understand relevant contributing factors to loneliness and its impact on physical and mental health, to inform recommendations to address loneliness in the Geelong community, specifically young adults (18–24 years), so as to better target existing services and develop relevant information for dissemination.
The key goals and objectives for this project are to:
  • Develop a better understanding of both the prevalence and the impact of loneliness in the Geelong region based on existing data sources and using a strength-based approach.
  • Collate a list of existing services available in the Geelong region that may be appropriate to address loneliness.
  • Identify any gaps in service coverage and propose solutions. Identify opportunities for collaboration between service providers.
  • Develop material to promote education and awareness of loneliness in the public realm (for example, possible targets could include workplaces, schools, universities, Barwon Health, City of Greater Geelong, Geelong Cats etc.
  • Identify a pathway to extend the impact of this project beyond its life time by embedding the work in community and research organisations who can continue to implement our findings.
  • Disseminate our findings across key stakeholders including a report of actionable findings to Barwon Health.
There are many benefits associated to the project:
  • A healthier and more socially-connected community.
  • A proactive approach to mental health rather than being reactive.
  • Better targeted resource allocation for services in the community to address loneliness.
  • Breaking the cycle of concomitant health issues enabled through loneliness, allowing health providers such as Barwon Health to reduce the number of acute care patients.
  • Ultimately, improved physical and mental health outcomes, including lower suicide rates in the Geelong region.
Their presentation can be found at this link.
and the full report at;
On May 1st 2021, under sunny blue skies the Surf Coast Trek was held. Once again Kardinia Rotary Club members were out in force to help with parking and bus management, start & finish line logistics, manning drink stations and following up the field as tail End Charlies. In excess of 900 people tackled either the 38 km Aireys Inlet to Torquay or the 25 km Angelsea to Torquay treks along the Surf Coast Trail. The weather was perfect and in addition to our formal roles we are able to provide encouragement and support for participants undertaking this challenging walk.
The 2021 event is on track to raise in excess of $230,000 to be shared equally between the Give Where You Live and Kids+ Foundations.
During World Immunization Week, 24-30 April, join with Rotary to combat vaccine hesitancy and misinformation by spreading the facts about why #VaccinesWork. 
This year, you can take action for World Immunization Week in these ways:   
  1. Download and share our new two-minute video, “Rotary Inspires Leaders in Global Health,” (see link below). In it, global health leaders like U.S. infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Co-Chair Bill Gates, UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta H. Fore, and World Health Organization Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus talk about what Rotary has achieved in the fight to end polio.
  2. Post graphics and other content from Rotary’s World Immunization Week Toolkit on social media with the hashtags #EndPolio and #VaccinesWork.  
Rotary in Australia and New Zealand is 100 years old this year. Share in the celebrations with the 14 Rotary Clubs of Geelong and District this Sunday, 21 March, as we join together for our R100  Baton Relay. Three relay teams will converge from around the District in Geelong at Christ Church where there will be a celebration including music, a coffee van and a chance to picnic and enjoy the the fun. 
To celebrate 100 years of Rotary in Australia 100 Rotary Clubs or School’s from around Australia were invited by the Rotary Club of Canberra Burley Griffin to become involved in this joint Centenary project. Kardinia and Corio Bay Rotary clubs have combined to donate 4 Peace Poles to Northern Bay College to install at each of their 4 primary school campuses.
The Peace Poles were presented to the school, represented by Ken Massari, College Assistant Principal - Student Enrichment and Community Partnerships, at the Northern Bay early Learning Centre by the 2 club Presidents on March 3rd as part of a Kardinia Rotary Club breakfast meeting at the centre. It is planned that unveiling of poles at each primary school campus will coincide with Harmony Day 21st March 2021. 
At our meeting on November 25th Michelle spoke to us about her experience as a School Counsellor in remote NT indigenous schools. She is based on Groote Eylandt servicing 3 schools on the island, one on a neighbouring island and one on the mainland. She shared some history of the island, the cultural practices and how that can impact on school attendance.
To see her slide show follow the link https://www.dropbox.com/s/1btbs2iowwmyql6/Indigenous%20School%20Counsellor.pptx?dl=0 . The text related to the slides is in the Story Content below.
Over the 2019/20 summer the East Gippsland area of Victoria was devastated by bushfires, with many communities and farmers losing homes, sheds and livestock. The District 9800 Bushfire Relief committee has established a project to supply retired shipping containers to farmers to replace destroyed sheds, as a temporary measure. Funds raised by clubs are able to be matched by funds from the District 9800 Bushfire Relief committee through RAWCS. Through the generosity of our members Kardinia Rotary Club raised sufficient funds to supply 4 containers. 
On September 23rd the Kardinia Rotary Club conducted it's first on-line Fundraising event with Federal Senator Sarah Henderson as our guest speaker. She spoke on the topic of "Victoria's Post Pandemic revival : the challenges and opportunities".
The event was raising funds for the NIKERI Indigenous nursing scholarships so we also had Professor Mark Rose, Associate Professor Gabrielle Fletcher and Senior Lecturer Kelly Menzel as guests to share with the audience the fundamentals of the NIKERI nursing program.
The event was successful in raising in excess of $2,500 to enable the club to continue its ongoing support for the program.
For the last 3 years the Kardinia Rotary Club, with support from District 9780 grants, has supported a Nursing Scholarship program at the Mvumi Hospital in the Dodoma district of Tanzania. At our meeting on September 2nd we had the privilege of having Doctors Angela and Brian Savage join us from the UK via Zoom.
At our meeting on July 29th Steve Funnell introduced Kellie Menzel (NIKERI Snr lecturer), and Nikki McGrady and Lani Harris (two NIKERI nursing students and Rotary scholarship recipients). Our club has been a supporter of these Scholarships and it was good to have some insight from Kellie as to the program and Nikki and Lani from a participant perspective.
At our meeting on Wednesday July 22nd we first viewed a recent Landline segment highlighting the locally driven bushfire recovery effort in Mallacoota. President Henry, after viewing this, subsequently made contact with one of the East Gippsland Rotary clubs to understand what role Rotary locally, and more broadly, can play in assisting this difficult process.
At our meeting on July 1st we had an enlightening presentation from Megan Hockey, who is a PhD Research Student at the Deakin Food & Mood centre. Her research is focussed on the link between diet and mental health. The research shows there is a strong link between diet and mental health and that improving diet should be a key strategy in treatment of  depressive mental illnesses.
To see Megans full presentation please click the link below.
During this past year, the club has worked hard to develop a garden comprising a number of raised beds, a chicken coop, herb garden and tree plantings for the children of the Family Learning Centre at Northern Bay College. We were delighted to receive a letter of appreciation from the centre accompanied by this letter from the children. 
An intrepid band of club members took part in the International Marathon Fellowship of Rotarians Challenge Walk along the Barwon River this morning, 13th June 2020. The IMFR have kindly indicated that they will donate to a cause voted on by the participants, world wide. Check out the video:
One of the projects that our club has supported for a number of years is the Bushikori Christian Centre in Uganda. Our club member, John Watts, who has been our link to the project, shared the following video that was put together to explain to our newer members what Bushikori is all about and what it does. This is well worth a look.
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We meet In Person
Wednesdays at 7:30 AM
Royal Geelong Yacht Club
25 Eastern Beach Rd
Geelong, VIC 3216
We normally meet at the Royal Geelong Yacht Club, 25 Eastern Beach Rd. 7.30 am for 7.40 am start and finish around 8.30am.
Postal Adress:
PO Box 768
Belmont VIC 3216
Rotary Club Number 28907
Chartered June 22, 1992
Incorporated Association A0027707F
Registered Fundraiser FR0014432
Meeting Attendance
To register for a meeting or submit an apology, please contact Henry by close of business the Monday before the meeting.
Rotary International Theme for 2023-24
Club Executives & Directors
President Elect
Vice President
Immediate Past President
Club Service
Community Engagement and Public Image
International and Rotary Foundation
Events Management and Fundraising
Services & Partnerships