Posted by Karin Soster
Jo Impey was chairperson for today’s club meeting at Cilantro – which was also a fellowship meeting.  Marg Lucas performed the invocation, and Tim Lynch performed the loyal toast.  Tony joined the meeting via Zoom.  Barry Oliver attended as a guest.
Today’s club toast was to President Alain Dewe and club members of the Rotary Club of Monaco.  The club was chartered in 1937 and has 60 members.  Monaco is a tiny principality located in a semi-enclave on the Mediterranean Sea and surrounded by France – and few kilometers from the France/Italy border.  It has had an interesting history and like many European countries, it was under Roman control from 48BC until the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in 476AD – however, only for the Romans of the Eastern Empire to return and reclaim Monaco in the mid 6th Century.   Control fluctuated between Lombards, Franks and Saracens until the Ligurians arrived in the 11th Century, and control was granted to the city of Genoa.  The Genoese constructed a fortress at the top the Rock of Monaco, and which was considered as the beginning of modern Monaco.  Francesco Grimaldi captured the fortress in 1297, only for the Genoese to recapture The Rock a few years later.  In 1419, the Grimaldi family purchased Monaco from the current ruling forces.  Monaco was recognised as an independent sovereignty by Spain in 1633, and by France in 1641.  However France took control during the French revolution.  After the defeat of Napoleon control moved to Sardinia in 1815, then back to France 1860.  In 1910, Louis 11 created a constitution changing the Prince of Monaco from an absolute ruler to a head of a semi-constitutional monarchy.  In 1918, the Treaty of Versailles provided limited French protection over Monaco.  In 2002, a new treaty was signed between France and Monaco, clarifying the sovereignty of Monaco if there are no heirs to carry on the Grimaldi dynasty – the principality will remain an independent nation.   Today, the RC of Monaco provides funds for the ASM Rugby School, funds a project to supply drinking water and created a library for Sainte-Devote school in Conakry, Guinea and provided disaster relief for Turkey following the earthquake in February 2023.  Thank you Grant for another interesting presentation. 
District Conference in 2024 – Linda
RCBMC is responsible for a few activities for next year’s conference:
  • Someone to look after conference registrations – this person will also represent our club on the District Committee.  Glenda has offered to help out with this role.
  • Logistics – Peter O’Brien has offered to look after this.  Helen Nodrum and Marg Lucas have also offered assistance.
  • Saturday night dinner – our club is responsible for styling the venue and finding a band for the night.
  • Entertainment for the start and end of the conference.
  • Anyone with suggestions for a band or entertainment, or offering assistance to please follow up with Linda.
ShelterBox  Australia – presented our club with a Rotary Lifetime Giving Sapphire Award in recognition of significant financial contributions made to ShelterBox.  A copy of the award will be scanned and uploaded on our club website.
Rotary Foundation – RCBMC was recognized with a Level 1 Award for a minimum of $100 per member club contribution to The Rotary Foundation.
Bayspeak competition – the competition final will be held this evening Wed 7/6 a Firbank. 
Next week’s club meeting – Membership will be next week’s topic with guest speaker –PDG Malcolm Chiverton.
RI Convention Club dinner feedback – Glenda has received good feedback from some of the guests who attended the club dinner on Monday 29 May, who thoroughly enjoyed the evening, and found our two guests speakers inspiring. 
Marg Lucas attended the Convention as a volunteer.  She found it ‘mind blowing’ to witness approximately 13,000 for the convention opening where she was a flagbearer during the opening event add it was an amazing event to be part of.
Helen Nodrum attended the Convention as an attendee and also volunteered.  She was impressed with the presentations and the range and breadth of humanitarian projects supported by Rotary, but also the commonality of challenges experienced and shared by many Rotary clubs.  The overriding theme of the convention emphasised the Family of Rotary and the Rotary Action Plan of Increase our impact, Expand our reach, Enhance participant engagement, and Increase our ability to adapt. 
All members were provided with the letter received from Jim McCarthy of Prior Lawyers surrounding the house in Frankston and Launch Housing prior to today’s club meeting.  President Glenda and PE Ron provided background to the  house purchased in Frankston in 2017 and managed by Launch Housing initially under the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding and then under terms of an Affordable Housing Deed.   The purpose for purchasing the house was to provide short term housing for women seeking accommodation to escape domestic violence.  Unfortunately use of the house has not followed this path, and with changes in tenancy laws since the deed was first signed, there is little redress for the club to change the situation. The Affordable Housing Deed expired in 2022 with use of the house and its management by Launch Housing extended on a month by month basis.  The board determined in April to provide 90 days formal notice to Launch Housing to end the terms of the deed which was ratified by club members and moved and carried in a motion in a club meeting held 26 April 2023.     The following motion was put forward at today’s club meeting.       
That following the end of the Affordable Housing Deed held with Launch Housing and return of the property, 7 Bluegrass Walk, Frankston, to the Rotary Club of Bentleigh Moorabbin Central, the members of the Rotary Club of Bentleigh Moorabbin Central agree to sell the house – the proceeds of which will be invested until further determined by the club members.    Moved: Ron Brownlees.  Seconded:  Peter O’Brien.    The Motion was carried. 
Launch Housing will be advised formally of this motion. 
Club members are welcome to put forward suggestions to the board for what the club should do with the proceeds.