RC Nambour, Queensland, Australia

RC Nambour, Queensland, Australia
District 9600
Home of RI President
Clem Renouf, 1978-1979 Convention Site
President's Home Page

The Rotary Club of Nambour, the first Rotary club established on the Sunshine Coast, has a long history of service to the community and involvement with many of the international service programs of Rotary International. Through the active membership of dedicated Rotarians the Club has continued to respond to opportunities locally as well as internationally.

Major projects, undertaken in Community Service and International Service during the past twenty-five years, are described below.

During the 1979-80 year Past RI President Clem Renouf put forward the idea of a welfare project for the Nambour area. After consideration, the Rotary Club of Nambour and the Rotary Club of Nambour 76 decided that it should be an aged persons village similar to Sundale Garden Village previously established by the Apex Club of Nambour.
This was designated as a Rotary 75th Anniversary project, and the two clubs, with a gift from Clem, raised $80 000 to get the project underway. Subsequently, the activities of Rotary Garden Village and Sundale Garden Village were merged, and four Rotarians now serve on the Board. This organisation is one of the largest not-for-profit community groups on the Sunshine Coast, and there are over 800 residents in the various facilities, 150 of whom are in Rotary Garden Village.

The first Rotary food stall was conducted at the Nambour Show in the 1977-78 Rotary year when the Club, operating out of a tin shed, raised $1450. Over the years operating facilities have been improved, and by 1996 a modern food stall was in operation. Revenue from this activity, averaging in excess of $25 000 per year over the past few years, is a major contributor to the Club’s fundraising.

During 1985 the Club undertook the construction of new Red Cross Rest Rooms in the grounds of the Nambour Hospital. For those people with next-of-kin dangerously ill in hospital these comfortable amenities provide urgently needed accommodation.

In 1992 the Club, together with the Maroochy Shire Council and Meals on Wheels, undertook the task of extending the Meals on Wheels building, contributing $30 000, plus volunteer labour towards the project. The Club had contributed towards the funding of the original building and provided a minibus to assist with the delivery of meals.

Following the establishment of the University of the Sunshine Coast, the Club initiated talks with the Vice-Chancellor about the most appropriate way Rotary could assist with the development of this facility, and enhance its links with the community. From these discussions the Community Fund was established embracing all Rotary clubs on the Sunshine Coast. After initially providing substantial funds to assist in research projects, the Fund now concentrates on providing annual scholarships to encourage postgraduate studies in the various faculties.

In 2001 one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken by the Club was initiated. Hear and Say, a Queensland-based community organization operating centres throughout the State for children who are deaf or hearing impaired, saw the need for a centre on the Sunshine Coast. The Club accepted the task of underwriting the project through the purchase of land and final construction of suitable premises.

Thanks to the tremendous work of Club members and the support of local businesses, workers, charitable trusts, the general public and other Rotary clubs on the Sunshine Coast, the project was completed in 2004. Hear and Say now has a magnificent purpose-built centre providing a full service for children on the Sunshine Coast.

Hear and Say has a facility with a valuation in excess of $0.75m and members of the Club are still directly involved in the ongoing support of the organisation.

During the past twenty-five years Rotary has moved to embrace the international aspects of service and it is fitting that the Rotary Club of Nambour should have been so heavily involved in international activities. While our own Clem Renouf was R.I. President, the 3H program and The 75th Anniversary Fund for the 3H Program were established. In Nambour this new direction from Rotary International was supported enthusiastically. Following are some highlights of the Club’s activities.

Nambour was the first club worldwide to contribute to the 3H Program, and after initially contributing more than $80 000 to the original PolioPlus, fundraising has continued to support this through the PolioPlus Partner program.

In the past twenty-five years contributions to The Rotary Foundation have allowed the Club to recognise in excess of forty Paul Harris Fellows.

Members have participated in at least six FAIM projects to Papua New Guinea and the Philippines.

Matching Grants have been provided for projects in various developing areas.

Youth Exchange, Group Study Exchange, and Ambassadorial Scholarship Programs have been fully supported.

In addition to the Club’s achievements in Community and International Service, mention must be made of the inclusion in its ranks of female members, the hosting of two District Conferences, and the continued fellowship enjoyed by members over so many years. These, too, are among the highlights of the Rotary Club of Nambour.

attributed to Alan Hocking

And then of course, our greatest honour - maybe it was a partial recognition of the Club's greatness, its spawning ground for some of the best Rotarians. Maybe it was just recognition that one our past presidents was so active, so dedicated, such a good leader that Past President Clem Renouf was elected Rotary International President for the year 1978/79.

Clem's full biography can be read in his book, but a short precis follows -

He was a Charter Member of the Rotary Club of Nambour in 1949.
Clem was president of the Rotary Club of Nambour, 1954/55.
Clem was District Governor 1965/66
Director of Rotary International 1970/72
Finally, RI President, 1978/79

acknowledgements to the authors of "Spinning Wheels"
posted by RGHF Webmaster Greg Barlow November 2008

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