Rotarian Sam Bucknell presenting a cheque on behalf of Yass Rotary.

Seventy years ago in 1954, the BBC completed its first TV broadcast, Seven Samurai was first released and Yass Rotary Club started its journey in the local community.

Yass Rotary are celebrating this milestone by holding a dinner to celebrate the past and begin building the future at the Yass Golf Club on February 20 at 6:30 pm for a 7:00 pm start. The cost is $50 per person.

Mick Newling Yass Rotary Club, Executive Secretary, and former District Governor, invites those who’ve been part of the Rotary Club’s history to enjoy the special night.

“The importance [Rotary] has to the community is, we provide a very valuable service to all elements of the community, we support anyone, they can be aged or the needy or the young. We helped to fund breakfast clubs for the Yass Primary School and provided storage facilities for a disabled member of the community to put his scooter under. We bought a twenty-two-seater bus for the Yass High School; we regularly send students to sporting functions,” he said.

“We send students overseas as exchange students, we provide funding for the needy in developing countries, we support particularly girls in Uganda, we provide toilet and shower facilities for villages in the Solomon Pacific Islands.”

The list of accolades Yass Rotary have accumulated continues to grow as time goes on.

“We raised our funds by simple things like catering for events and we do barbecues in the street. We do raffles of various types. We’re able to raise anywhere between 10 and $20,000 a year from our community, and most of that goes back into the local community.

“I came in at ‘99. It’s been 25 years. We’ve fluctuated in membership from a low of 18 up to the mid-30s. Like lots of service clubs, it’s difficult to attract new members in the current environment, the society we’re living in with two income families who are working, building up their families. Consequently, our average age has climbed up, but we’ve managed to maintain headway on it. The Lions in Yass are struggling too. We’ve been able to manage to keep our heads above water.”

We’re all looking forward to seeing what ventures the Yass Rotary Club have in store for us next.

Jack Murray