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What a great district conference! The organizing committee and volunteers led by Co-Chairs Kathryn Atkin and Dave Works did a tremendous job. Miriam MacLeod was fabulous as our MC, but it took the participation of all of you who attended the conference to make it a success.
 
On Friday, Dave Penney entertained us with traditional Nfld storytelling and music. RI Presidential Rep Mike Webb spoke on Ethics and the Foundation. We held a “World Café” style strategy session for our district. The award-winning, Enactus Memorial group gave a “Ted-Talk” quality presentation on their social entrepreneurship. Royal Newfoundland Constabulary Chief Joe Boland explained the RNC’s new approaches to mental health issues. Then, we all enjoyed a great Newfoundland Kitchen Party social!
 
On Saturday, Wali Shah challenged our thinking with his story delivered through rap poetry. Two hundred Rotarians were turned into an instant choir “With a Little Help From Our Friends”! Watch us on YouTube! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=STRQNY3ORhc&feature=youtu.be I gave my year-end review and DGE Rob Christie gave his outlook and invitation to the 2019 Conference in Pictou County.
 
Saturday was “Peace Day” and as you can see by the picture it was a "white-out" for Peace. Kevin Tuerff explained how the tragedy of 9/11 led to his experience with the compassion of the people of Gander, his book “Channel of Peace”, the “Come From Away” musical and his "Pay it Forward 9/11" initiative. The Governor’s Dinner sat 250 to enjoy a wonderful dinner theatre experience with Spirit of Newfoundland Productions.
 
On Sunday, Padre Jeff Payne led a Celebration of Service for those Rotarians we lost during the past year. For each Rotarian lost, a tree will be planted at the Rotary Sunshine Park. RI Pres Rep Mike Webb delivered a very funny but effective message on change and then representatives of the YE students and Interactors recapped their experiences. The Conference ended with music from the award-winning men’s choir Newman Sound.
 
The breakouts were very high quality and were well attended. “Membership: In One Door and Out the Other” provided insights into an exit survey of 100 former Rotarians in our District. We learned how to “Tell Your Rotary Story”. We heard about the 60 year-old “Santa to the Coast” project. We learned why Rotaract and Interact is “Our Bridge to the Future”. We heard from a panel on the Foundation – District Grants, Global Grants and Giving. Plus, a session on the “How-To” of Strategic Planning.
 
The Partner’s Program was great and had one of the highest participations many years. A team of about 30 volunteers delivered a fantastic Youth Program.
 
All during the entire conference photos and videos were posted with #7820conference to Twitter.
 
Mark your calendar for June 17th in Pictou for the Changeover Ceremony to DGE Rob. And join the 131 registrants from D7820 at the RI Convention in Toronto, June 23-27.
 
The year is quickly coming to an end. Thank you for the honour and privilege of serving you as your District Governor.  Pat and I thank you all for your warm welcomes. You and your clubs made the theme “Rotary: Making A Difference” come to life.
 
DG Don
District Leaders recognized at the Conference
Rotary International President Ian Riseley's theme for the Rotary year 2017-18 is "Rotary: Making A Difference" and DG Don Sword recognized several "Difference Makers" in our district at the 2018 D7820 District Conference held May 25-27 in St. John's.
 
Wilf McIsaac from the Rotary Club of St. John’s NW but he has been living in the Codroy Valley in Western Nfld for the past year. He is completing his term in June as our District Treasurer and he may be remembered as the most important Treasurer our district has ever had. Wilf is a banker, not an accountant, but he has led our district into a brave new era of sound financial management with modern banking tools and guided us as we adapted to a series of increasingly demanding financial requirements from Rotary International. Everyone within the district is in Wilf's debt for his leadership. 
 
Wilf was presented with a Paul Harris Fellowship pin +1 and a framed "Difference Maker" award.
 
Congratulations Wilf!
Garth Gordon is a member of the Rotary Club of Kentville in Nova Scotia, and he is serving his second term as District Secretary having served in that capacity almost 20 years ago with PDG Pete Smith. This time around he began in 2016-17 during Elva Heyge’s year as Governor and he will continue for a third year in a row for District Governor Elect Rob Christie.
 
Garth has made an incredible impact as District Secretary. His depth of knowledge, attention to detail and passion for the role that he performs so well for the district has led to a level of professionalism within the governance of our district that is the envy of districts all over our Zone and beyond.  How he manages to do all of that and still come up with new puns is an absolute marvel!
 
Last year PDG Elva presented Garth with a Paul Harris Fellowship and this year DG Don was honoured to be able to present Garth with a framed Difference Maker Award.
 
Congratulations Garth!
 
Past District Governor Elva Heyge is a proud member of the Rotary Club of Kentville. When DG Don called Elva to the stage he said:
 
"I wanted to publicly thank you for everything that you have done for this district as you have risen through the Governor ranks and now complete your year as Immediate Past District Governor. Your passion has been the Fellowship Exchange and International Service and we are so pleased that you have agreed to continue on as the International Service Chair. But from a personal note, you have been so generous with your time and  your talents to help me prepare for and to complete my year. You have my utmost respect and you have been a true friend.
 
I am honoured to be able to present you with a Difference Maker Award”
 
Congratulations  Elva!
 
 
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PDG Stella Roy wins big at the District Conference!
Past District Governor Stella Roy is a member of the Rotary Club of Halifax Harbourside, in Nova Scotia.
 
Since serving as District Governor in 2014-15, Stella has remained very active in Rotary at the district, Zone and internationally having participated in immunization days in Africa. As our District Foundation Chair she has led a very effective group from all around our district. She has also served as the Rotary  Zone 24 East Polio Plus Coordinator.
 
The Rotary Foundation Citation for Meritorious Service recognizes individual Rotarians who have demonstrated outstanding service to The Rotary Foundation. Each year, Districts may select only one Rotarian to honour for their commitment, enthusiasm, and passion for the ideals of Rotary.
 
At the District Conference in St. John's DG Don Sword presented to PDG Stella Roy, on behalf of the Trustees of The Rotary Foundation, the Rotary Foundation Citation for Meritorious Service. 
 
Congratulations Stella!
When Stella was District Governor the Rotary theme was “Light up Rotary” and can anyone imagine a more appropriate theme for someone?
 
Our District has an award for a Past District Governor who provided great service to the District during his or her year as District Governor and who continues to contribute in an outstanding way to the work being carried out by District 7820.
 
This award is based on nomination and there should be no surprise that Stella's name was submitted. 
 
DG Don had the great pleasure at the 2018 District Conference in St. John's to present the HEART OF THE DISTRICT AWARD to Stella Roy!
 
Congratulations Stella!
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Governor's citation and Outstanding Club of the Year
One of the purposes of the District Conference held May25-27, 2018 in St. John's was to celebrate the accomplishments of D7820 Rotary Clubs.
 
Clubs have until June 30th to complete enough of the goals in the four categories to be recognized with Rotary International President Ian Riseley's Rotary Citation. Since those awards will not be presented until the fall of 2018, District Governor Don Sword decided to recognize the ten (10) clubs that were currently eligible for that Citation (subject to the year end membership numbers) with a Governor's Citation!
 
Congratulations to the Rotary Clubs of Avalon Northeast, Clarenville, Middleton, New Minas Sunrise, Port Hawkesbury, Sackville and Area, Saint-Pierre et Miquleon, Sydney Sunrise, Truro and Wolfville Mud Creek for earning the Governor's Citation! (photo shows Mark Vardy of New Minas, Joe Twyne of Clarenvlle, Albin Girardin of St.Pierre, Adam Cooke of Port Hawkesbury and Jennifer Crummey of Avalon NE with DG Don)
 
It is the practice for District 7820 to name one club for the Outstanding Club of the Year Award.  There are so many great clubs, doing extraordinary things, that the choice is very hard.  
 
The criteria for the award says the successful club must be eligible for the RI Presidential Pitation and have shown an increase in membership during the year. Then they may be judged on their membership development, service projects, support of the Rotary Foundation and service beyond the club.  In the end the DG makes a decision and the award is made at the time of the District Conference.
 
Any one of these ten clubs would be a very worthy recipient, but the Award for Outstanding Club of the Year for 2017-18 in D7820 was presented to the Rotary Club of Middleton. President Michael Fairn was in attendance to proudly accept the Award on behalf of the Club.
 
 
  
RC Summerside wins Significant Achievement A
ward
The Rotary International Club Significant Achievement Award is given to recognize a particular club’s service project or activity that has had an exceptional impact. Rotary International stipulates that only one club per district, per year, is eligible to receive this award.
 
This year on Monday October 2, 2017 District Governor Don Sword attended the grand opening of what was the culmination of one of the most significant projects ever undertaken by a club in our district when the Inspire Learning Centre opened in Summerside, Prince Edward Island. Rotary International President Ian Riseley was also in attendance along with many other special guests to celebrate the remarkable achievement of the Rotary Club of Summerside.
 
The ribbon was cut that day by DG Don and RI Pres Ian with the assistance of Rotary Club of Summerside Rotarians Derek Key, President Gordon Coffin and Assistant Governor Heather Matheson. 
 
At the District Conference in St. John's  DG Don was very pleased to present the Rotary International Significant Achievement Award for D7820 for 2017-18 to the Rotary Club of Summerside. In this photo Rotarians Wayne Thompson and Jacyn Waite join with President Gordon Coffin in accepting the award from DG Don.
 
Congratulations to the Rotary Club of Summerside!
Please support the D7820 Global Scholarship to study MS
Atlantic Canada has the highest incidence of Multiple Sclerosis in the World – 350 out of every 100,000
 
The Problem There is no cure for MS, yet there is hope for those living with the disease as innovative techniques are now being applied to MS treatment. Fatigue and walking are the top two concerns in MS. Research in the Recovery & Performance Lab suggests that with the right intervention, the restoration of walking and the reduction of fatigue is possible.
 
Memorial University Home to the world’s largest MS and Aging study under the leadership of Dr. Michelle Ploughman, Canada Research Chair, there is no better place to find answers that will improve the lives of those with MS.
 
The Plan There are currently no guidelines for rehabilitative care. Therefore people with MS may be receiving outdated approaches to rehab and there could be untapped potential to improve recovery. This proposed study will be the first to investigate intensive aerobic exercise combined with walking to improve the quality of life for MS patients.
 
Wendy Lasisi Wendy has recently completed a graduate diploma in Clinical Epidemiology at Memorial University. Prior to that she completed a BSc in Neuroscience from the University of Leeds and an MSc in Roehampton University, both in the UK. Dr. Michelle Ploughman speaks very highly of the intellect and drive that Wendy demonstrates, noting that she will undoubtedly have a real impact on the lives of people living with MS while completing her PhD in Medicine.
 
What Can Your Club Do?
 
Donate $1K or more. Rotary Club of Wolfville Mud Creek will match every club donation up to $10,000 needed to make the math work - $20K from Clubs, $10K from D7820, $20K from Rotary Foundation = $50K.
 
Ten clubs with as little as $1K each can make a difference in Atlantic Canada and the world! Please contact District Foundation Chair Stella Roy roystellaj@gmail.com or Wolfville - Mud Creek President Tom Herman tom.herman@acadiau.ca
 
The application deadline is June 29th.
 
PLEASE ACT NOW!
Visit to District 5020 “They Own The Town”
Bob Munroe wrote to me about the Rotary Clubs in Campbell River, BC and said “They own the town”
 
Wow! He is right. Two clubs together with about 150 members in a town of 35,000. The projects that they’ve developed are amazing. Rotary signs everywhere on many significant projects. Parks, trails, suspension bridge near the new Elk Falls hydro project, museums, Maritime Heritage Centre, Seawalk trail, Daycare Centre for High School mothers, community splash park, and the list goes on.
 
The Maritime Heritage Centre built by Rotarians on the foundation of an abandoned sewage treatment plant was a monumental feat. Besides being a Rotary meeting place and museum, it also houses the BCP 45, the seiner that was on the back of our old five Dollar bill.
 
A wonderful group of Rotarians. Donald and Mary Gray stayed with Bruce and Patricia Baikie while I stayed at the home of club president Keith & Yvonne Price. We were welcomed with a potluck social and mingled with many of their members, including some of those who visited us last year.  Pieter & Bela Koeleman say hello to all their friends from last year.
 
We were shown many of their projects as well as much of the natural beauty of the area. The world renown Carving Shed of Bill Henderson, a great Rotary supporter, sends totem poles and other art pieces around the world and is helping to keep the art of carving alive.
 
We visited The Rotary Club of Sidney-by-the-Sea and were treated to a welcoming BBQ on a beautiful evening. We were treated to a tour of the beautiful Butchart Gardens, an everchanging garden open year-round. We hiked up Mount Douglas and spent an afternoon touring Victoria, a charming city.
On Sunday, we were treated to a wonderful afternoon cruise through the Gulf Islands and lunched at a charming little restaurant in Genoa.

On Tuesday, we traveled on the Black Ball ferry “Coho” to Port Angeles, Washington where Geoff & Betsy Pentz picked us up and took us through the Washington countryside including Hurricane Ridge on top of the Olympic Mountains. Fabulous view!
 
The Pentz have a B&B and I got to stay in their yurt; a delightful experience, warm and cozy with an adjoining “Hobbit” washroom with shower. Poor Donald and Mary had to sleep in the comfort of the house overlooking Puget Sound.  
 
Bainbridge Island was next with Vicki & Lee Evans. So picturesque and the warmth of the Rotarians was wonderful. Tours of the island, Bloedel Gardens and the ferry excursion to Seattle will always be warmly remembered. The crab were delicious. 😊
 
Tacoma  Club Number 8 were our final hosts (Jim & KaCe Whitacre). They gave away about 20 scholarships in their meeting that I attended. The new Passport Club of Pierce County has a unique afterhours concept and they are still “finding their way” as to how they wish to develop but their members show a huge amount of enthusiasm. They will succeed.
 
We gave several presentations during our travels and much interest was  developed in visiting our district. Many ideas for projects were traded. Each of our hosts along this visit showed what Rotary Friendship is all about and there was always a little bit of heavy heart to leave them for the next adventure.
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