Since the club was chartered on April 26, 1937, the activities of Mudgee Rotary have mirrored the aspirations of its hometown and district.
In 2019, members continue to support many of the same causes the club has assisted since the beginning.
Health, community, disaster assistance, youth and education have remained constants — although in many cases the technology and the scale of the projects have changed.
Over the years, Mudgee Rotarians have been quick to respond in the event of national and international tragedy.
In 1949 Mudgee Rotary sent £613 for Maitland flood victims after a “grand fundraising effort”.
In 2018 Mudgee Rotary was a lead club in raising $100,000 for Blaze Aid, following the disastrous Sir Ivan fires in the Coolah district and the Kains Flat fires, north of Mudgee.
This year Mudgee Rotary has worked with WeCare in the Mudgee District to provide drought assistance for the many affected farming people in our district as a result of the current Drought in NSW.
In total, Mudgee Rotary has contributed $20,000 over 10 years to disaster relief including the South Pacific Tsunami appeal, Cyclone Larry assistance and the Haiti Earthquake.
Mudgee Rotary also continues a long tradition of giving to medical causes.
In previous years, the club projects have included providing equipment such as a resuscitator for the Mudgee District Hospital, and creating a rose garden with a wishing well, which can still be found in the hospital grounds.
In more recent times, Mudgee Rotary took on the ambitious project of coordinating community fundraising with a target of $50,000 for Western Care Lodge, to accommodate patients undergoing treatment at the Orange Regional Hospital.
The late John Staples was named Mid-Western Regional Council’s Citizen of the Year in recognition of his work for this project, which resulted in a total community contribution of $62,000 towards “The Mudgee Room” at the now completed lodge.
In 2011, Mudgee Rotary committed $5000 towards furnishing the University of Wollongong’s residence for student doctors in Mudgee, a project designed to enhance graduating doctors’ experience of rural practice and encourage them to return.
Sponsorship of rural nurses, training of oncology nurses, mental health, audiology projects, palliative care and early detection of bowel cancer through BowelScan are just some of the local health projects that have benefited from Mudgee Rotary support.
Mudgee Rotary is also a consistent supporter of youth, not only through Rotary youth exchange and personal development programs and sponsorship of local schools’ involvement in the National Science and Engineering Challenge and Model United Nations Assembly (MUNA) but also by direct support to local projects.
Club records list assistance to the Police Boy’s Club and the Swimming Club as a major activity of Rotary in earlier years.
Support for youth continues in 2018.
In 2018 /2019 projects have included the Mudgee Mathematical Minds Challenge for regional Primary and High Schools, a TAFE scholarship, support to young Learner drivers through PCYC and support for the National Science Foundation.
Emergency services have been a long-time beneficiary of Mudgee Rotary donations.
An earlier “substantial contribution” of over £300 to the District Ambulance has its parallel in the club’s major gift for 2012, $6000 to the Mudgee Rescue Squad’s appeal to raise $105,000 for a new rescue truck.
Other beneficiaries of Mudgee Rotary donations have included Riding for the Disabled, CanAssist and local schools.
Mudgee Rotary also supported national projects through Australian Rotary Health Research, and international projects such as Rotary International’s flagship charity Polio Plus campaign to eradicate polio worldwide.
Mudgee Rotary has donated more than $180,000 to various projects since 1999.
Over the last 75 years, there have been many changes in Rotary.
The charter members of the Mudgee Rotary Club, headed by Mudgee Guardian editor Gordon Madell, included representatives of the key professions and businesses in the town: all men.
Along with many other changes, Mudgee Rotary now welcomes women as members. In 2011, Val Webb was elected as the club’s first female president . The diversity in our Board is representative of our Membership.
Club members, meet weekly to enjoy friendships and plan participation in service projects to assist local, national and international issues.