Special Community Involvement

The End of Cyclists Donations to Worthy Causes. In 2014 Terry Mether started the “coffee card” kitty using Black Pepper’s loyalty card discount which gave every sixth coffee free. All riders paid the full amount for their coffee and the surplus from the free sixth coffee went into the kitty. By mid 2015 a total of $1,198 was contributed to the Shed. With the Shed’s finances on a solid footing in late 2015, the EasyRiders started donating the “coffee card” funds to worthy causes, which generally meant helping out an individual in Belconnen who could not afford some necessity, such as a medical procedure. A total of $9,259 was donated to various worthy causes between September 2015 and December 2020. COVID19 brought the “worthy cause” project to an end because the change to paying by cards rather than cash last year meant that the previous procedure of everyone putting cash in and pooling the money from free coffees into a kitty was no longer viable. The $1,016 currently remaining in the kitty has been donated to the Shed.

In total the EasyRiders raised $11,473 between 2014 & March last year, $9,259 was donated to worthy people & a total of $2,214 was given to the Shed

10 Dec 2020 – Cyclists Worthy Cause – Paul reported that the cycling group had donated $94.45 to Uniting Care Kippax to assist in the provision of medical treatment.

12 Feb 2020 – Two Cyclists worthy causes.  The Cyclists donated $200 via Vinnies to assist a single Mum to buy school uniforms for her teenager.  They also donated $315 to Uniting Care Kippax to pay for an MRI for someone on Newstart who urgently needed the medical assessment.  The total now donated since 2014 has reached the five figure mark ($10,033).

10th Dec 2019 – Cyclists Worthy Cause – Around this date the cyclists provided $600 to a lady DJ with a 10 yr old daughter through Kippax Uniting Care. The lady is on status of having her refugee status approved and needed help paying for some old rent that she has been ordered to pay. She was not able to pay it as she was not working and was not eligible for any kind of support from Centrelink because of the type of visa she holds.

23rd Nov 2019 – Paul reported “You may recall that we donated $200 in July to assist a teenager, whose brother had died recently, to attend a “Boot camp”.  Belconnen Rotary paid the rest of the $2,000 cost of the camp.  Last Wednesday evening I had the pleasure of attending a Belconnen Rotary meeting at which the youngster, accompanied by his mother and AFP mentor, provided some feedback on his experience.  Also present was “Uncle Bob” who is the organiser of these camps.  Just in case you get the wrong idea that Uncle Bob is a softie who goes easy on the kids, it’s worth noting that he was in the Australian Army for 42 years, much of it as a Warrant Officer.  He described the camp as being strictly along military lines – wearing uniforms, carrying army packs, night patrols, pushups for transgressions, cooking meals etc.  The youngster admitted that the week was tough.  The highlight was a “battle” between two groups to capture the opposition’s flag, using laser-tag rifles as weapons. It seems that the experience and support have been very beneficial.  Recognising the value that he obtained from the first boot camp, Rotary Belconnen has agreed to pay for him to attend a second camp which commences on Monday 25th November. Thanks for your generosity in this and other worthy causes.”

29th Oct 2019 – Cyclists Donations – Cyclists provided $300 dollars to Karinya to provide financial assistance for one of Karinya’s outreach mums.  She has four children under the age of four and needs to take her 2 year old son to a private paediatrician to get a diagnosis for treatment through the NDIS scheme.  It is a one-off appointment because the waiting list for the government paediatrician is over 2 years

15th Jul 2019 – Cyclists Donations – On this date money, $200, was provided to Rotary to help contribute to provide assistance to a teenage aboriginal boy whose family is in crisis following the death of his brother.  The teenager has taken it very badly.  His single Mum has struggled to cope and believes a major intervention is needed to bring her son back on track. There is a Boot Camp for Koori Kids in Sydney which she wants to send her son to and which she thinks will help in a major way.  The cost is $2,000 and the West Belconnen Child and Family Centre asked a number of organisations to contribute.

3 June 2019 – Cyclists Donations –  The Cyclists provided $200 to Uniting Care Kippax to pay for a course on handling asbestos for a client who needed this qualification to obtain a job.  The total donated from the “coffee cards” is now $9,118.

15 April 2019 – Cyclists Donations – The EasyRiders donated $700 to Uniting Care Kippax to assist a client who was in urgent need of a dental procedure that could not be provided by the Government dental service.  The total donated from the “coffee cards” is now $8,918.

9th April 2019- Cyclists Donations – The Cyclists have contributed another $330 to assist a needy cause identified by Uniting Care at Kippax for its client KP. This was assist with accommodation costs for KP. This takes the total provided for worthy causes to more than $8,000

7th Feb 2019 – Cyclists Donations – They donated $400 to Uniting Care Kippax (UCK, through Alan Liah, Emergency Material & Financial Aid Coordinator / Counsellor) which brought a smile to the face of the bloke, nicknamed Mr Smile or PR, whose infected tooth was removed. Alan advised Mr Smile had been referred to UCK for having a swollen mouth due to a tooth infection. This happened a couple of times & his GP prescribed him with antibiotics to reduce the swell.  On multiple occasion he was being referred to the government dentist however due to having no health care card was declined service many times. Similarly, he had been to Centrelink & applied for Low Income Pension card but received no reply after multiple attempts. Mr Smile drove more than 30kms to UCK just to say thank you for the assistance provided. With the generosity of our external funder (guess that’s the Cyclists from Melba Shed) & the quick service from our Centrelink outreach worker, he came in & reported that he has had his infected tooth removed & his Low Income card was posted.

11th Jan 2019 – Cyclists Donations – For the past few years, the Cyclists have used the proceeds of the coffee card at Black Pepper (where the card provides each 6th coffee free) to support Belconnen residents who are doing it tough. Paul McCarthy said that the latest donation was $200 to a single parent to buy a new school uniform for a secondary school student

30th October 2018.  The Cyclists donated $250 to Uniting Care, Kippax to assist in buying a special boot for a lady with a foot problem.  The total donated from the “coffee cards” is now $7,288

31st Aug 2018 – With further donations from members the Shed sent $1,166 to the Belconnen area Rotary appeal for drought relief

28th Aug 2018 – Cycle Group provided $400 towards a defibrillator for the North Belconnen Church, making $2400 in total from the Shed

21st Jun 2018 – Cyclists Donations – The Cycling group has made a further donation of $500 in a petrol card through Uniting Care Kippax for a lady who is travelling about 100kms each day driving to Canberra Hospital to visit her daughter, who is expected to be there for another 2 or 3 months. This brings the total donated from coffee card” funds to $6,536.

May 2018 – Cyclists Donations – The Cycling group donated 4 bikes and $129 for three bicycle helmets to Karinya House for use by their clients.

12th Dec 2017 – Cyclists Donations – The EasyRiders contributed to another worthy cause by donating $180 to the Red Cross to cover the payment gap in an ultrasound for a soon-to-be mum.  The total donated from the “coffee card” funds is now $5,907

28th Nov 2017 – Cyclists Donations – The EasyRiders contributed to another worthy cause by purchasing a rear-vision mirror ($125) and fitting it to a car owned by a single mum.  The total donated from the “coffee card” funds is now $5,727

3rd Nov 2017 – Paul McCarthy advised Shed members that the BCS Annual Report has an article extolling the great work by the Easyriders for the extra funds they raise by drinking coffee at Black Pepper. See the annual report here. Then go to Page 33.

29th Sep 2017 – Cyclists Donations – Paul McCarthy advised that the Cyclists donated $390 to enable a young girl with walking difficulties to participate in the holiday horse riding program at Pegasus (Riding for the Disabled). The total donated from the “coffee card” funds is now $5,602

4th Sep 2017 – Cyclists Donations – Paul McCarthy provided a donation of $289 to Alan Liah of Uniting Care Kippax to help an elderly lady pensioner pay for skin specialist and car service

9th Aug 2017 – Cyclists Donations – Paul McCarthy provided a donation of $140 to Alan Liah of Uniting Care Kippax to help a client pay for a CT scan

10 February 2017 – The EasyRiders donated $665 to Karinya House to assist three babies to learn to swim ($216 for each baby). Karinya sent a letter of appreciation. Paul McCarthy read out on 10th March a short extract from this letter, written in appreciation for the rider’s recent donation of $665.00 to Karinya House.

26th Jan 2017 – Don Gruber awarded OAM – The Australia Days awards included Donald Stuart Gruber being awarded the Order of Australia Medal for service to the community of the Australian Capital Territory. Congratulations to Don who was one of those instrumental in establishing Melba Shed as well as a member of Ginninderra Rotary Club – More Information

7th Dec 2016 – Another worthy cause (3 in fact) – The EasyRiders donated $600 worth of vouchers to Canberra City Care.  They consisted of two vouchers from Toys’R’Us (one for $300 & one for $200) to assist two families who were struggling to afford Christmas presents for their kids & a $100 dinner voucher at Bella Vista for a pensioner couple who have been in ill-health to have a night out – Canberracitycare-receipt

18th Oct 2016 (Tue) – Ginninderra Rotary visited Karinya hosted by their Vice-President Catherine Cooney, and then had dinner at the Shed from 7PM. The Shed hosted the club and provided cooked meat for the dinner (6 Shed members did the work) with Barry’s wife undertaking the other catering. Some 40 rotary members & guests attended. Roger Amos gave an overview of the Shed with Don Gruber providing the historic background

22nd Sep 2016 – The Cyclers have agreed to donate $300 from the “coffee card” funds by the EasyRiders to assist a student who had been selected from a competitive field to attend a special educational forum and needed to raise funds to be able to attend.  This brings the total donations to various causes since 2014 to $3,135. Tony has been in touch with the student, who is very grateful for the donation.  She intends to come along to coffee tomorrow week (i.e. Friday 30 September) to personally thank us

12th Aug & 17th-19th Aug 2016 – Helping Karinya House, Home for Mothers & Babies Move in. Karinya House is a community based organisation providing supported accomm, transitional housing & outreach services to pregnant & parenting women & their families who are in crisis.  They moved into their new facility which is adjacent to the North Belco Uniting Church. Karinya sought help through contact Louisa from Karinya 0414 272 365. We responded and on Fri Afternoon, 12 Aug from 12.30 to 3.00 pm, around a dozen Shed members helped set up various items as well as assembled some IKEA items for the 18 rooms they will have. On Wednesday 17, Thursday 18 & Friday 19 August beds & furniture arrived on site & needed to be carried to Modules as well as IKEA flat pack items assembled. Wed 24th Aug misc work including putting up paintings, assembling child play house, etc Also Fri 26th & Mon 29th Aug

Karinya Painting

 9th Aug 2016 – The Cycling Group raise some $50 a week though coffee purchase profits at Black Pepper Café, and on this day made another donation through Belconnen Community Centre to another person in need – this time $359 for a bed base. Paul McCarthy was at IKEA and bought the bed base and took it to Kippax BCS office where it was assembled by BCS

30th June 2016 (Thu) – 5 Shed members helped with cleaning up a house at Kambah for a lady associated with Karinya

27 June 2016 – The latest donation from the “coffee card” funds by Cyclers was $100 to a person who was struggling financially and required the money for some urgent transport needs

7 June 2016  –  The Cyclers donated $450 to Karinya House for Mothers and Babies.  Part ($275) was to pay for medication for a pregnant woman who has been placed on a lot of expensive medication due to stress and extreme illness and is struggling to afford it.  The other $175 (consisting of $150 from “coffee funds” and $25 donations from some Easyriders) was for a young Mum on a low income who is at Karinya and needs to buy herself some specific items of clothing that cannot be acquired second hand


6 April 2016 – The Cyclers donated $230 to Mt Rogers Primary School to pay for a student to access the special instrumental band program

23rd Mar 2016 – Member 85 year old Wally Blumenfeld retired from the local SES & was honoured for his long 37 years of service Good one Wally

29th Mar 2016 (Sun) – 5 members helped out with cleaning up at the Snowy Hydro SouthCare open day at Hume

3rd Sep 2015 Another Worthy Cause – With the agreement of the Shed committee, the cyclists donated a total of $1000 to a family whose daughter was being treated for cancer in hospital in Sydney

4th Dec 2015The Shed visited the ACT Fire Brigade Museum in Forest. We will donate $50 towards their efforts to preserve and retain some of the history of fire fighting in the ACT

21st Nov 2015 – (Sat) The annual Voices in the Forest concert was held.  10 Shed members were part of the Rotary volunteers who helped with parking & assisting visitors. The Shed will receive $1000 for the effort

7th Aug 2015 – Brian Wells want members to consider donating out of date old pharmaceuticals to send to places like Vietnam

10th Jul 2015 – Barry Howe has been awarded the Rotary Club of Ginninderra’s ‘Rotarian of the Year’ award for his contribution to the Club. Barry was an early members of our Shed and has been active in the Shed, Rotary and Greenhills for a long time

26th June 2015 – Mt Roger Primary School held its Outreach Day and invited Melba Shed to attend. Around 8 members attended through the work of Stuart Allan. There was some combined singing activities from 10.45-11.25AM and then morning from about 11.25 to 11.45AM

10th Apr 2015 – Brian Wells is still seeking old spectacles, frames, cases etc to send overseas to disadvantaged recipients. Please bring any old spectacles, even damaged or broken ones to the Shed and Brian will take them off your hands

Mon 23 March 2015 – Greenhills Working Bee – 12 members & some from Griffiths (ACT) Shed helped out with maintenance activities

5th Dec 2014 Best Technology Student Project – For several years now Melba Shed has provided a small grant to Canberra High School in support of their Arts and Technology Showcase. Canberra High School Art and Technology teachers Kathryn Shaw and Ash Chandra visited us to introduce their 2014 Woodwork Arts and Technology Showcase winner, Jesse Staines.   Jesse’s project was to build a wooden clock, which he brought along to the Shed and described how he went about the project. It was an excellent effort with the numbers expertly inlaid into the timber clock face. Well done Jesse

30th Nov 2014 (Sun) ‘Voices in the Forest’ at the Aboretum. 9 Shed members were among the 22 Shedders & Rotarians who assisted with car parking & bus driving duties at the event at the National Arboretum.  3 of our members were a little conflicted as they are also members of the Rotary Clubs that went to make up the 22 volunteers. The Shed will receive $1000 for the effort. Again Don Gruber was heavily involved in the organisation

27th October 2014 – Greenhills Working Bee – On this date some 12 Melba Shed Members undertook light gardening and cleaning up activities at Greenhills Centre

5th May 2014 – Greenhills Working Bee – The working bee ran from 09:30 to 12:30. 18 Shed members helped with prunning, planting and clearing activites

2nd May 2014 (Sat) – Rotary Trivia Night – Raiders Club West Belconnen 7PM – The Trivia night was held again this year, aimed at assisting in the eradication of Polio. With financial support of the Gates Foundation & Rotary International. A few shed members helped our co-sponsor, the Rotary Club of Ginninderra, raise over $1,500 towards the world-wide eradication of Polio. This amount is matched two to one by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation so effectively $4,500 now goes to the cause

Digital TV Provided for a Member – Unfortunately one of our members has had the misfortune to have his residence broken into recently with his televison set stolen. After a request by Geoff Grimmett for members to see if they had a spare unit, several generous donations by members enabled a new set to be provided. Well done!

28-29th Mar 2014 (Sat) Loriendale Orchard 24th Annual Apple Day – This was on again with Shed members (Stuart Allan, Graham Gartside, Ted Kell, Ted Tregilgas, Bob Salmond, Harry Redfern and Colin Fitzpatrick) helping setup on Fri afternoon in the rain and with the open day on Sat afternoon where they raised $10,800 for charities

18th Dec 2013 – (Tue) – 7PM – Dinner at ‘Wok n Sizzle’ Kippax – Shed members (including partners) had a dinner at the ‘Wok N Sizzle’ at Kippax shops, to celebrate a very successful 2013 and to farewell Gem, the former owner, who is moving to Adelaide. We have had several Shed meals at Wok N Sizzle and Gem looked after us very well. 31 members attended

17th Dec 2013: Canberra High School – Best Technology Student Project – Melba Shed was again pleased to support Canberra High School during its annual Showcase Arts & Technology Awards. We donated a cash prize of $50 for the Award which was presented by Laurie Power. A thank you from Canberra High to Laurie Power who presented our Shed’s award to Justin: “Dear Laurie, I have attached our final school newsletter for the year. On page 14, we have acknowledged Melba Men’s Shed and Laurie Power for presenting the Woodwork prize for the Arts & Technology Showcase winners at our school assembly. We appreciate the ongoing support that you have provided our school with this year and we look forward to your support again in 2014. On behalf of Canberra High School staff and students we wish you and the Melba Men’s Shed members a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Kind Regards, Ash Chandra, Canberra High School, Executive Teacher – Design & Technology” Picture is in newsletter #212

13th Dec 2013 (Fri) – Greenhills – Certificate of Appreciation – Harry & several members attended a Christmas function at Greenhills where they were presented with a Certificate of Appreciation for working bees during 2013

10th Dec – (Tue) – 10AM – Morning tea at Greenhills with Rotary & Anglicare Shaw Possibilities persons. Several members went to Greenhills to experience what it has to offer

23rd Nov 2013 (Sat) – Community Concert ‘Voices in the Forest’ – Around 15-20 shed volunteers helped Rotary with parking arrangements at the Aboretum. Around 4,500 people turned up to enjoy the proceedings. We raised $1,363.44 towards Shed funds. Funds were paid by the Village Building Company. Thanks to Don Gruber for facilitating this event

31st Oct 2013 (Thu) The Shed again agreed to sponsor a $50 prize at the Canberra High School’s Arts and Technology Showcase. The award is for the best technology project in 2013. Last year Laurie Power made the presentation and he will do the same again this year. On 15th Nov the School wrote to us and thanked us for the donations

12th Oct 2013 (Sat) ACT Carers – Shed members Ron Thomson, Geoff Grimmett, Alex Ritchie and Keith Grieve donated their time on this Sat morning to run a Sausage Sizzle for Careers ACT

30th Aug – 1 Sep 2013 (Fri-Sun) Canberra Timber & Working with Wood Show – EPIC – Several members helped man the AMSA exhibit promoting individual Canberra and district Men’s Sheds, and the Shed movement as a whole

16th Aug 2013 (Fri) – Alex Ritchie reported on the benefit of publicity from David Attenborough’s visit to Canowindra’s Age of Fishes Museum. After newspaper reports on his visit appeared the Age of Fishes Museum was approached by an elderly woman (born in Canowindra but who had lived mostly elsewhere) offering to make a donation to the Museum. Alex contacted her and she offered a $20,000 donation to the AoFM. Because she had never seen the current Museum, and to bring her up to date, Alex sent her an information kit of articles and photographs on Canowindra. After reading this the donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, doubled the amount of her already generous donation to $40,000! Big effort!

21st Dec 2012 – Woodworking Support – Harry advised he is in contact with a lady at the old Holt Primary School who is arranging a woodworking facility for the Brain Injury Foundation. There will be a future opportunity for those with the right skills to work with children from this foundation on woodworking activities

21st Dec 2012 – Recycled Spectacles – Brian Wells reminded about the program of collection old spectacles and reading glasses for 3rd world countries. They are currently collecting for Myanmar (Burma)

24th Nov 2012 (Sat) – Community Concert ‘Voices in the Forest’ – Around 8-10 shed volunteers helped Rotary with parking arrangements at the Aboretum. Around 4,400 people turned up to enjoy beautiful concert featuring Sumi Jo. We raised $1,000 towards our building fund. Shed pictures

20th Oct 2012 (Sat) – Working bee at Weetangera Cemetery – Shed members helped out in a working bee at Weetangera Cemetery run by Rotary and the Southwell Family Pictures

Donations 2012/13 – After the tour of the Queanbeyan Museum and District Historical Museum on 7th Sep 2012 we gave the Museum a donation of $50

Don Gruber has been awarded the Rotary Club of Ginninderra’s ‘Rotarian of the Year’ award for his contribution to the Club. Don’s initiative in setting up and providing on-going support to Melba Shed received specific mention in the award presentation which took place on 23 June. Congratulations Don – we too greatly appreciate your committed contribution to the success of Melba Shed

25 Sep 2012: Thurs: Canberra High School – Best Technology Student Project – Melba Shed was again pleased to support Canberra High School during its recent Showcase Arts & Technology Awards. We donated a cash prize of $50 for the Award night which was held on Tuesday 25 September. The award was presented by Laurie Power. The winner was Darcy Hatfield for his Metal Technology Project – a Naval Truck Cannon. (Pictured on the right with Darcy’ s Project below)

Melba Shed members have been helping with YMCA Garage Sales at Yarraumla since early 2009. Shed members have helped with early setup from 0730, clearup from 1200, and running the BBQ from 0800-1200. We have been able to ue the money raised at these BBQs for donation to worthy causes and more recently helping with funding Shed activities. Like to Volunteer at the YMCA? Can you spare a few hours a week? The YMCA Auxiliary is a group of volunteers who raise funds for the Y. The Aux operates two Op Shops at Belconnen & Kingston & a donation processing centre at Yarralumla

12 Nov 2011: Sat: National Aboretum Inaugural Community Concert – 10 Shedders (organised by Don Gruber) helped Rotary with parking arrangements for 1,500 cars at the Aboretum for the Inaugural Community Concert ‘Voices in the Forest’ from 4pm to 7.30pm. This helped raise $1,000 for the Shed and will be used on the extensions

Power Presents to Darcy Hatfield Canberra HS

4 May 2012 – Jennifer Thompson from Engaging Solutions visited our Shed on 4th May 2012 accompanying David Livingstone and Harry Enright. She was undertaking a digital storytelling project. Jennifer Thompson is producing a short media piece for a local organisation (LEAD) highlighting ways in which people living with a disability can be treated as individuals and more engaged in the general Canberra community. LEAD (through Harry Enright) assists David Livingstone in attending the Melba Shed. Like many Canberra men, it is a highlight in David’s weekly social calendar. Picture: Alan Tongue talking to shed member David Lingingstone. Picture compliments of Jennifer Thompson

Lead Access has been providing Harry Enright to bring and support David Livingstone to attend Shed meetings as a member and as a way of enabling him to engage more fully with community members. Part of what LEAD is trying to achieve is for people with a disability to be interactive with the broader Canberra community and be treated as an individual

Alan Tongue with David Livingstone

3 Nov 2011: Thurs: Canberra High School – Best Technology Student Project – Melba Shed was pleased to support Canberra High School during its recent Technology Showcase. We donated a cash prize of $50 for the Woodwork section in the People’s Choice Awards for 2011. Congratulation to the winner – Adam Nebelung who was presented with his prize by Laurie Power at their assembly on Thursday 3rd Nov 2011 (Pictured on the right)

Donations in 2008/09 and 2009/2010 – As the result of raising money from a YMCA Garage Sale Sausage Sizzle on 21 Feb 2009 at Yarralumla, it was decided to donate money to a bush fire appeal and Uniting Care. Thus in FY 2008/09 we donated $250 to the David Balfour Trust that raised funds for the ACT fireman who died in the Victorian fires of Feb 2009. Also early in 2009/10 we donated another $250 to Uniting Care in Kippax through a cheque handed to the Rev Gordon Ramsay

Laurie Power Presents to Adam Nebelung Canberra HS