Beaudesert RSL hosts combined service club dinner

BEAUDESERT clubs came together for their annual combined service club dinner on November 12.

This year the event was hosted by the Rotary Club of Beaudesert and was attended by members from Zonta, Lions and Probus as well as the Beaudesert RSL Sub-Branch.

Rotary president Lesley Turton introduced guest speaker Sandy Murdoch from not-for-profit group Traction.

Mr Murdoch said he was from Brisbane but had family in the Beaudesert region and was very aware about the needs of young people in the area.

“The purpose of Traction is empowering young people in need,” he said.

“In Australia about 20 per cent of school students – about 70,000 a year – drop out of high school and in many cases this is the start of a difficult life journey.”

He said Traction focused on working with young people, typically in grades seven, eight and nine to help build a sense of purpose and success through a 10-week mentoring program.

Part of the course involves refurbishment of bikes and small engines which the students keep on completion of the program.

Mr Murdoch said the organisation was planning a Traction workshop in  at Beaudesert to support a group of 24 Scenic Rim young people.

He said the group needed to raise $1,500 for each participant via a scholarship fund to cover the costs of the program.

Denise Martin from Zonta explained local activities of the club, including raising funds to support women and girls both here and overseas.

Projects included making birthing kits and silk support cushions for women recovering from breast cancer surgery. They also supported homeless women by providing Share the Dignity packs containing personal hygiene products.

Neville Creen spoke on behalf of Probus and explained its significance as a Rotary-sponsored club providing service to senior citizens.

The 100-year-old Beaudesert Lions Club was represented by Jim Logan, who described the club’s activities including charity golf tournaments, Lions Christmas cakes and Lions food vans. He said about 55 per cent of money raised went directly back into the community and showed the rash vests the club provides to every Beaudesert student for swimming lessons in their first year of school.

Doug Lavers-McBain and Lesley Turton spoke for Beaudesert Rotary about the club’s initiatives including providing mobility scooters for those in need and equipment for the Healthy Pathways project in Beaudesert, helping protect the Koala habitat by planting trees, sponsoring international exchange students and providing desks to schools in Cambodia.

Next year’s dinner will be hosted by Zonta.