If you were one of the many members, guests, skippers, and/or hosts who joined us for our annual Blessing of the Fleet on Monday evening, I think you will agree that once again, fellowship team along with our gang of inspired boating enthusiasts did a superb job. The numbers of attendees and the diversity of backgrounds from which they came added to the comradery on the night. From having the Rotary Club of Heirisson join in with a boatful of their members, to our young Rotaractors with guests in attendance, to members we haven’t seen for some time, to having some of our newest members join in, it was great to take the opportunity to spend some time outside of our busy routines. A huge vote of thanks to our skippers who donated their time and their pleasure craft for the event.

And of course, how could we forget to acknowledge that Ulrich fortunately/unfortunately shall continue to hold the title (2 or 3 years now reigning?) as “The last member who was blessed through full immersion” or “Rev. John may walk on water but not Ulrich”… as we successfully executed another safe Blessing of the Fleet with no serious incidents to report. But then again, in speaking with Sergeant Nigel on the night, he apparently has enough fodder for many weeks to come….so look out, and bring your gold coin donations!

This week, we’ve got a very special speaker organised to provide our club with an update.

Two years ago, almost to the day, we launched our Reflections Project. “Reflections Through Reality” is a not-for-profit organisation which promoting medical research into a cure for mesothelioma, a terminal cancer associated with asbestos exposure. We know only too well the impact of this insidious disease.


This Friday we welcome Dr. Willem (Joost) Lesterhuis back to our club to provide us with an update on his medical research. Yoost is a Research Fellow with the School of Biomedical Sciences and the National Centre for Asbestos Related Diseases (NCARD) at the University of Western Australia. Joost works in collaboration with Professor Bruce Robinson AM at UWA and has a background as a dual-trained medical oncologist and basic researcher in immunology and cancer biology. Joost’s research focuses on mesothelioma.


Joost will discuss new treatments that unleash the immune system against cancer, which are giving promising results in some patients with mesothelioma and other cancers, but unfortunately not in everyone unfortunately. Joost will focus on some of the research being undertaken at NCARD that aims to improve the effects of those treatments and will also talk to us about a machine they need to assist with their vital research.


Together, the Rotary Club of Perth in partnership with Reflection Through Reality Foundation are aiming to raise the remaining funds needed to purchase this piece of equipment. We are proposing that the funds raised for the purchase of the machine will be given in memory of Barry Knowles, founder of Reflections Through Reality Foundation (RTRF). Barry never faltered in sharing his passion for finding a cure and supporting fellow sufferers right up until his passing in December last year.
For more information on RTRF, please visit:
We do have a number of Rotarians working hard in the name of service both locally and abroad:
- Rebecca Tolstoy is currently in the United States on behalf of Path of Hope working with the Rotary International Headquarters and a number of US Rotary Clubs to “break the cycle of domestic violence”.
- Jess Karlsson and two our Perth Rotaractors: Claire Robinson and Tara Sherwood are in the final stages of fund raising for their Cambodia House Building trip with ScoutsWA and will be departing in just three weeks’ time.
- PP David Reed and the board at Passages just held their annual Golf Day last Friday and I understand that it again was a great success. More information to follow on the specific results when he gets them said David.
- Barry Thornton advised that the Channel 7 “Today Tonight” feature story on Betty Smith (see news article: ) is due to air on 3 Nov 2017.
- Our Membership committee ably led by Wendy Campbell has been meeting regularly with her committee to explore and better develop opportunities to increase value for our members and prospective members.
- PP George Etrelezis has continued to work ‘behind the scenes’ assisting to promote our club and the virtues of Rotary to corporate member prospects.
In closing, there are so many Rotarians in our club, each doing what we can to useour skills and vocational talents to serve our community. It is great to be a part of such a great club. As we move closer to the holiday season, our time will no doubt become more precious…please remember that family, work and then Rotary are the priorities!
Join Leaders. Exchange Ideas. Take Action.
Yours in Rotary, Stephen Inoyue - President - Rotary of Perth 2017/2018