Minutes of Meeting 13th November 2023

Rotary Club of Gloucester Council Meeting Minutes Date: 13th November 2023 18:00-20:00

Venue: Sofab Sports, Brockworth

Club Number: 19313

Charity Number: 274097

 

 

PRESENT: Chris Rawlings (Pres) Angela Seddon (Secretary), Julian Farr, Colin Rogers, Phil McCormick (SVP), Clive Hannis, Jeremy Keck (Treasurer) John Sargent

VISITORS: none

APOLOGIES: Amanda Chamberlayne, Martin Henshaw,

MINUTES: Minutes from 9th October meeting accepted as a true and accurate record by Council

MATTERS ARISING:

  1. A communication and marketing plan – CH meeting planned for 11.23
  2. Short Video Clips – Chris Rawlings has now made one video which will be discussed at the marketing committee.

PRESIDENTS REPORT: Chris Rawlings delighted on the progress made on a number of fronts this month:

INCREASE OUR RESOURCES

The increase in rugby car parking fees has had a very positive impact and there have been no complaints about the pricing and the ability to take card payments has been widely praised.

Thanks to secretary Angela and husband Laurence for the offer to set up the Santa truck this year. I will join them in this years preparation and take over the role next year.

INCREASE OUR PRESENCE

The Tree of Light features more prominently than ever in the City Christmas celebrations and this is testament to the efforts of that committee.

Met with Assistant Governor Charlie Coates and the other 3 Presidents. The community awards will be implemented in other areas of our district. There was a commitment from all clubs to try and increase support for each others efforts. As I have mentioned on a couple of occasions at lunch Rotary as a whole in Gloucester is very strong. I would like to put on record my thanks to VP Phil and PP Matt who I know have spoken at other clubs recently. I see this as helping to build our profile.

 

INCREASE OUR IMPACT

The Community & Youth committee has been particularly busy with the start of the Gloucester 9 project. We will, through our leverage with the Salvation Army increase donations of warm clothing. This is supplemented by input from Cancer Research and West Midlands Air Ambulance. We will now reach 5 areas from the city, Matson and Robinswood, Podsmead, White City, Churchdown and Kingsholm.

The number of boxes supplied to support the Salvation Army Xmas distribution has increased significantly.

Looking forward this month I will attend the Inner Wheel District Assembly 14th, District Council 28th, Young Artis Prize Giving 8th Dec, SA Concert 10th and Rotary Kingsholm Carols 14th December.

 

IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT: Clive Hannis community awards meeting on 21st November with the other Clubs.  Driving forward with promoting the Gala night with videos on social medias including Linked In which is going well.

PRESIDENT ELECT: Phil McCormick not much since detailed report previously presented. Attended the District Roadshow at Maisemore which was very informative but not very well attended which was a shame as the message was an important one and was very membership focussed. Meeting with DGE Drewe taken place to discuss the arts and history projects and his own District projects and will reconnect once in office.

JUNIOR PRESIDENT’S REPORT: Vacancy – Would all Members who have yet to take on the role of Club President please consider this vacancy. Please direct all questions to any member of the Council.

SECRETARY’S REPORT: Angela Seddon-Hill – Club AGM would be held on Friday 8th December where we shall receive and approve the audited accounts for the year ended 30th June 2023 and the election of Club officers for the year 2024/2025.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Jeremy Keck

 

Charity Account £12,370
Charity Saver £28,330
General Account £12,448
General Saver £6,078
Lunch Account £5,999

Rotary in Gloucester £9,302     (this is the Community Awards account)

 

These figures do not reflect the budget allocations against them. Treasurer will provide a ‘real’ snapshot of where we are with regards to our account balances, our income and our projected outgoings for this year.

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

 

MEMBERSHIP concerns have been raised by members of the Club that we do not have a clear membership recruitment plan and that there has been no positive recruitment actions, plan or new members in the last 18 months.

We currently have 39 members in our Club. For information:

Gloucester Quays now have 41 members Gloucester Severn now have 45 members Rotary @Kingsholm have 21 members

We have an aging Club demographic and unless we attract new members in the next 12 to 15 months our Club will struggle moving forward we need more action and less talking on the matter.

Come 2024 – 10 members will have served in Rotary for more than 44 years and 9 for more than 30 years.

Had a promotional handout been produced, as previously suggested then it could have already been given to at least 15 speakers/visitors. It is felt that it should be someone’s very specific role to follow up everyone who has come into contact with us. Concerns have been expressed by members that they are not sure how new members can be attracted to join if 8-10 members are over the age of 90!

The subject of Aldermen/Ambassadors/Honorary membership to be raised at the next meeting of Communications/Marketing and Membership.

 

A. Community

Initiatives

Budget
Carers Activities –

People +

£1,200
Salvation Army –

Christmas Support

£2,000
Warm Clothes Project
Gloucester Nine (Note

1)

£5,500
Gloucester Foodbank

 

COMMUNITY AND YOUTH – Martin Henshaw the committee met on 6th November. Budget £18,400

 

B. Young People
Young Carers £1,200
Kids Out – Summer

Event (Note 2)

£3,000
Life Education £1,000
Young Voices £1,000
Holidays for Disadvantaged

Children

£360
Rotary Art Competition £150
Gloucester Nightstop £1,000
Contingency £1,990
£18,400

 

‘Gloucester Nine’

To ensure we do not over-reach our capacity we will restrict our support, this year, to 7 wards: Barton & Tredworth; Churchdown & Innsworth; Moreland; Podsmead; Grange; Tuffley; Matson & Robinswood. This excludes Westgate and Kingsholm & Wotton.

However, the initiatives we are looking to take forward apply equally to these wards and, it is proposed, that President Chris will discuss with the President of Rotary@Kingsholm to see if they are prepared to follow up.

To this end Ola will discuss with the Destiny Church, Kingsholm to see if they are prepared to work with R@K and Martin Henshaw will talk to St Catharine’s Church for the Refugee Hub.

The proposal is to try to link, through a committee member, the identified support hubs in the wards with the providers of required items. The Furniture Recycling centre has offered to provide furniture at a greatly reduced price or FOC although we will be required to meet transport costs. Various Charity Shops have offered clothing.

Kids Out 2024

All clubs in the district have been canvassed to see if they wanted to join the existing 7 Clubs that take part. Nine replies have been received to date, of which 3 felt Cattle Country too far to travel (particularly SEN children) For 2024 sandwiches will be made on the day and will consist of a ham, jam or cheese and will meet each school’s specific order. Richard Wright is checking alternative food outlets. Neil Richardson will be acting as a ‘sleeping understudy’ for the next 2 years and therefore all correspondence regarding Kids Out should go to both Richard and Neil. 2024 will see us with some 800 children plus carers, teachers and helpers.

Next meeting for Community & Youth planed for Monday 4th December.

 

FUNDRAISING – Amanda Chamberlayne going well need support for Tree of Light Collections, the Christmas Street and Store collections rotas will go up shortly and help will be needed to support these slots.    Rugby Car Parking total to date: £2478.30, Tree of Light to date: £2,760 and collections from the Wall’s factory £506.24.

 

SPORTS AND SOCIAL – Colin Rogers unfortunately the skittles evening has had to be cancelled as many members are involved in other activities.

INTERNATIONAL – John Sargent committee has now met. John has met with the representatives from the Canberra Rotary Club, Austrialia who are happy that the proposed tree project doesn’t go ahead.

John Stubbings has been dealing with a charity in Nepal and the committee would like to use the ringfenced money (for trees) to support a project for medical equipment and medicine. The £750 allocated from the Club charity account was matched with a district grant (approved before COVID). John would speak to District to let them know that the project is no longer going ahead and find out whether we can reuse it for the Nepal project, give it back or reapply separately.

Ukraine money is still available (just under £3000) in funds. District has sent information on new Ukraine Government regulations regarding shipping items out to the Ukraine thereby enabling their Government to get a better handle on what is coming in and where it is all going.  Two new contacts have been made locally and these will be followed up shortly with regards to Ukraine refugees in Gloucester and the new community that is growing.

A circular has been received from District relating to a Rotary Youth World Affairs seminar in USA 2024. We are invited to select candidates between the age of 16-18 to go on the course. District will pay costs to get there but Club would need to pay for their food and accommodation (about £800). Information has also been sent to Community & Youth committee. Both committee chairman will discuss the possibilities.

FRIENDSHIP SCATTER – Amanda Chamberlayne the committee have now met twice.

Rodez twinning has become very patchy over the past years and many of the key Rodez people involved with the exchanges have gone very quiet and unresponsive despite the committee’s best efforts. The very long association with the Rotary Club of Rodez was acknowledged but the committee felt that it was time to move on and a suitably worded letter would be drafted for President Chris to send to their current President.

Colin Rogers has also written to long term friend Bernard in Rodez to say that we would always welcome any of their members should they wish to visit the area.

 

Moving forward the committee were mindful not to encroach on the very successful non-conference weekends that already take place in Sept/Oct but wanted to build on the successful scatter visits that have already taken place in Barcelona, Gibralter and Malta. Friendship Scatters would be the way forward with the first scatter proposed to Amsterdam. The committee have now reached out to 3 of the 14 Rotary Clubs in Amsterdam to see whether they would be able to welcome us to one of their meetings when we are visiting the City.

Following feedback from members of the Club the committee are also contacting several ‘Gloucester Rotary Clubs’ in the USA to see whether we can build a ‘virtual twinning’ relationship with an open invitation for their members to join us for a lunch at our Club should they venture to the UK. Visitor information would also be shared about Gloucester and the Cotswolds to encourage visits. Sue Smith has produced various links to the websites for Gloucester tourism which can also be accessed by other Clubs. Amanda has written to the three ‘Gloucester’ Rotary Clubs in the USA and is waiting to hear back.

It is hoped that by reaching out by virtual twinning and physically visiting different Rotary Clubs across UK cities, Europe and beyond, opportunities may arise for joint projects and collaborations which would then be referred to the International Committee who would research and lead.

Amanda reported that she has found a plaque in the Rotary cupboard that was presented to us on our 50th anniversary by the Gloucester Club of Massachusetts which she is has placed with the Rotary banners in her shed.

The committee proposed that the funds from the weekly wine raffle, including the current pot be put into a ‘Friendship Fund’ as a restricted element within a Savings account (so that the interest be allocated on a pro-rata basis). This fund would be used solely to cover the meal costs of any international visiting Rotarians and partners should we be successful in attracting them to a regular Club meeting.

The committee received a letter from the current President of the Rodez Club suggesting a pen pal friend project with local school children. Martin Henshaw will follow this up to see whether Crypt and Denmark Road have any appetite for it.

 

 

FELLOWSHIP AND HOUSE – running well the system works, apologies to Colin Rogers by Wednesday. Arrival for 1230, seating at 1245.

COMMUNICATIONS, MARKETING, WEBSITE & SOCIAL MEDIA – meeting planned for

Tuesday 14th November where social media training will take place for members who want it and discussions around Membership and Marketing take place.

 

New website has been updated and list of activities completed. President requires a defined budget and a plan of how it will be delivered. Demographic needed of the type of person we wish to attract to the Club and an action plan will be created around this.

A lot of work has been carried out ‘behind the scenes’ with regards to our website and

promotions including:

  • Produced a Video to promote the Gala night
  • Created promotional flyers for gala night and QR codes for payment
  • Created New Rugby Car park signage for price increase
  • Created Tree of Light Banners
  • Website updates – numerous including new headings, new pages, new image gallery, additional links, social icons, updating on regular basis and monitoring

 

AOB – email received by President Alex Kirby from Quays who provide a Christmas Tree to St Mary’s De Crypt Church with their contact details included – would we like to make this a Rotary in Gloucester Tree and include our Club details as well. No cost to ourselves. Council agreed that we should accept the offer.

 

 

 

DATES OF NEXT MEETING: 11th December (apologies Clive, Phil) 8th January 2024, 12th February, 11th March, 8th April, 13th May. Dining out on 10th June.

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