Posted by Karin Soster on Aug 02, 2023
Geoff Gartly was our chairperson for today’s club meeting at Cilantro.  D.G. Ian performed invocation and Paul performed the loyal toast.  Tony, Glenda, Helen, Charles and Karin joined the meeting via Zoom.
Today’s international club toast was to President Els Dams and members of the Rotary Club of Paramaribo Residence in the Republic of Suriname – the smallest sovereign state that is located on the northern coast line of South America on the North Atlantic Ocean, squeezed between Guyana and French Guiana, and bordering Brazil in the south.  English, French and Dutch are the three main languages spoken by the inhabitants, and is testament to their history with invasions by the Dutch, the Spanish, the English, and then the French in that order.    The Dutch occupied the land and opened a Trading Post on Suriname River in 1613.  The Spanish arrived and took over for a while to be followed by the English in 1630, and then the French in 1640.  By 1663 there were 60 sugar plantations, 3,000 African slaves and approx. 1,000 white settlers.  Control wavered between the Dutch, the English and the French, and eventually returned to the Dutch in 1816 after the defeat of Napoleon.  The Dutch abolished slavery in 1863, though the English had abolished it during their rule, however, slaves were required to work on the plantations and were not released until 1873.  Suriname became self-governing in 1954 as part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and became independent on 25 November 1975.   In the early 20th century natural resources such as are rubber, gold and bauxite were discovered and exploited.  Paramaribo is the capital and largest city of Suriname, and was founded in 1613 as a trading post established by the Dutch, with now a population of 224,000 – approx. 1/3 of the Suriname population.   The Rotary Club of Paramaribo Residence projects include a Run fundraiser with other clubs in Paramaribo and a two year program to teach life skills and improve self-image to students in year 5.  The club was represented at this year’s Rotary Convention in Melbourne.
Upcoming Meetings:
Wednesday 9th August – Evening meeting at Cilantro with guest speaker, David Trotter - exercise physiologist
Monday 14th August – BMC Board Meeting in meeting room above Cilantro.  Could board members please forward their written reports to Acting Secretary, Karin, by the weekend prior for distribution.
Wednesday 16th August – Morning meeting at Cilantro for D.G. Visit from our own Ian Ballantine
Wednesday 23rd August – Morning meeting at Cilantro with Rebecca McKenzie, CEO of Glen Eira
Wednesday 30th August – Evening meeting at Cilantro with guest speaker, David Baird – chauffeur to the rich and famous.
The evening meetings are good opportunities to invite friends, colleagues and potential club members to “promote and open up the world of Rotary”
Mahjong - is on hold temporarily until another venue is confirmed.
GUEST SPEAKERS – Beth and Morgan from Ambulance Victoria
Beth and Morgan are paramedics with Ambulance Victoria working out of Victoria ambulance stations in Brighton and Caulfield.    The topic was STROKES.  Next week 7th – 13th August is Victoria Stroke Awareness Week, and today’s meeting was a timely reminder to club members how to recognise the symptoms of strokes and what to do.  Statistics show that 1 in 4 adults will experience some form of stroke at least once within their lifetime.  Strokes can happen to anyone at any age however people most at risk are in the older age bracket, male, have a family history of stroke, or someone who has experienced a stroke previously.  Strokes fall into one of two categories – a blood clot in the brain (the most common), and a bleed in the brain which come on suddenly. The most important action is to get a patient to hospital and treatment as quickly as possible – time is crucial for a better outcome and recovery.  Symptoms can vary however the response needs to be F.A.S.T.   Signs to look for are F – Face – drooping in the mouth;  A – Arms – can the victim lift both arms; S – Speech – is the speech slurred and can the victim understand you;  T – Time – is critical and call 000 for an Ambulance (explain clearly what has happened and how the patient appears/presents).  Victoria has one Mobile Stroke Unit fitted out with a CT scanner, equipment and medical staff to treat stroke victims – there are plans to purchase another one.  Actions everyone can take to help minimize the risk of stroke is to eat well, be active, avoid alcohol and be smoke free.                   
President Ron thanked our guest speakers, Beth and Morgan, and closed the meeting with this year’s Rotary theme – Create Hope in the World.