Melbourne Cup Day
Australian High Commission supporting Rotary Give Every Child A Future
President Denise Church addressed an audience gathered at the Australian High Commission to view the Melbourne Cup race and support Rotary: Give Every Child A Future.
Thank you to Nick and Christine Hurley and Cheryl Barber for their work in organising this function.
Below is a transcript of Denise's address.
Your excellency and distinguished guests
It’s an honour to speak on behalf of the Rotary Club of Wellington, and thank you High Commissioner for selecting Rotary’s Pacific health project : Rotary Give every Child a future as the charity for this afternoon’s Melbourne Cup function.
Let me give you a few racing tips on this project
Rotary as an organisation is not afraid to take on a big race. What’s the form? Rotary has been working to eradicate polio for more than 30 years. As a founding partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, we've helped to reduce polio cases by more than 99.9 percent.
So there is a strong track record.
What’s more, Rotary is definitely a stayer. In 2021, and with our colleagues in the Rotary Clubs of Auckland, Sydney and Melbourne, the Rotary Club of Wellington will celebrate our centenary.
But we are definitely not at risk of being put out to pasture.
This year our trans-Tasman Rotary team is leading the charge to win another big race – for childrens’ health in the Pacific via the Rotary Give Every Child a Future vaccination project.
Did you know that in parts of the Pacific, nearly 1 in 16 children die before their 5th birthday from vaccine preventable diseases. More women die from cervical cancer in Pacific Island countries than in New Zealand or Australia.
So our centenary project is about saving lives, and we’ll do that by vaccinating 100,000 children across nine Pacific Island countries by 2021, and establishing sustainable vaccination programmes.
Great runners share the stable with other winners. Rotary has teamed up with UNICEF to ensure that generations of children and women are protected against cervical cancer, rotavirus and pneumococcal disease.
So your generous donations today make a life saving difference, and we thank you all. You all get the winners ribbon by doing this.
But I guess you’d like to know the odds for making a world of difference? A donation of $45 will vaccinate a child against three diseases, for life.
And what’s more, you get several entries to the spot prize draw. With the greatest respect to the Melbourne Cup runners, you won’t find better odds than that.
In the RGECAF project, it is great to have both sides of the Tasman absolutely on the same side – one team, racing in the same colours. Hopefully, there are not too many arguments about what colour that will be, we’re all in Rotary blue and gold.
The project is also a great example of what Rotary does – we mobilise community minded people to make a difference, from local to global, and through partnerships. And along the way, we have a lot of fun.
The Rotary Club of Wellington is running strong – with over 120 women and men, and a range from young professionals in their 20s through to those who definitely hold the gold card. Together, we put up a strong showing, which is not at all bad for a 99 year old horse!
Come and talk with us if you’d like to find out more about our projects and activities.
As you get excited about the upcoming race, remember that there are two races today to back. While the Melbourne Cup is the feature race, the other is a life changing race for children in the South Pacific. Please help us make the Rotary Give Every Child a Future project a front runner right to the finish line.
So thank you again Your Excellency for your support, and thanks to all for your generosity.
Enjoy the race.