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Rotary Club of St Thomas Ontario


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Rotaserver May 18, 2022
Guests:  ThunderStamps Team, PCI Robotics
President Barbara opened the meeting with the gong for 7 members and 7 guests.  At present, several members are away on vacation.  We sang ‘O Canada’, toasted to Queen and Country and Rotary International and recited the 4-Way Test.
Barbara began by asking if the Robotics Team were aware of why both the Canadian and U.S. flags were displayed.  The reason is that our Rotary District 6330 encompasses parts of Michigan, USA and Ontario, Canada.
Bob Pate is sponsoring “Colours on the Beach”, an East Indian traditional festival where colours are released into the air.  The event will take place on Saturday July 9, 2022 and Bob is looking for Rotarians to volunteer to work the event in the afternoon.  This is the first time that this type of colour festival has been held in Canada. 
Our annual Changeover Meeting is scheduled for June 22, 2022.  Planning will take place after the Board meeting on May 25, 2022.
ThunderStamps Team, PCI (Parkside Collegiate Institute) Robotics
see video of Etienne and the teamhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EC9NNx3t_zQ
Etienne Borm, Etbo Tool and Die Inc., Aylmer, ON which sponsors the team, introduced the history of the team. Etienne’s parents were Aylmer Rotary Club members for decades. Etienne began attending Rotary meetings/ events at about the age of 6 years.
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Canada is the non-profit organization that spearheads the robotics competitions from some 7000 teams across the globe. FIRST was initiated by an MIT professor and a sponsor (the person who invented the Segeway).
FIRST competitions require the teams to build a robot every year from scratch and there are tasks which the robots must achieve.  Teacher Tim was in attendance and is the Team Mentor.  The students operate the Team and work with professionals from Etienne’s organization to plan, design, engineer and display the robot at local, regional and international competitions. Etienne spoke about the values of “Co-op-etition and Gracious Professionalism”.
Five student members introduced themselves and their respective roles with the Robotics Team.             From the publication “Team 4907: The ThunderStamps
The team is composed of four main branches: build, programming, sponsorship and media.  Through each branch, the philosophies of STEAM are developed in our members…….[During the summer and] throughout the beginning of the school year, we teach students the fundamentals of building and programming a robot, as well as fundraising, sponsorship, and budgeting.  Then, in January, FIRST releases a game video, manual, and rule book delving into the game design for that competition season.”
“The ThundersStamps have been incredibly successful in the past….last season our team made FIRST Robotics history with our never-before-seen JUMPING ROBOT! Due to our innovation, we were presented with the creativity award at all four of our events and qualified for the FIRST Robotics World Championships in Houston Texas. At this intense competition against the best robotics teams in the world, with a 100% success rate on our jumping mechanism, we placed 15th out of 75 teams and couldn’t be more proud of this amazing accomplishment!”
In addition to the innumerable hours of hard work that it takes to mount a project of this calibre, there are also huge costs associated with the FIRST program. ThunderStamps have a donation chart and estimate the budget is at least $50,000 per year, not including travel, accommodation and meals for the competitions. At the competitions, teams share their knowledge and take pictures of others entries.  The team has a website which includes their team number:  4907.ca  The website is new for the team this year and is sponsored by: Redding Designs in Aylmer, ON.
Q and A
  1. How much did you know at the beginning of the season, compared to what you learned during the process?                Almost nothing!
  2. Are you planning your future using some of the skills learned at the Robotics Club?
                                    The majority of students are looking to future schooling in one of the areas addressed by this project – engineering, business and economics, computer programming
  1. Do you build a prototype in the six weeks that you have to create the robot?
Yes, that was especially important this year
Stew was the winner today.
Happy Finns
Malcolm – Team presentation
Mark – Team presentation – “the future is in good hands”
Barbara – Team contribution to learning
Etienne Borm – Robotics Team and their contribution to Rotary
Ron – Robotics Team, family gathering for sister’s Celebration of Life – 47 people in extended family
Addition to May 18 Rotaserver – from May 11, 2022
Nine members and our two guest speakers attended today’s meeting.  Some members are away on vacation but Malcolm assured the presenters that while our numbers were small, our message to friends, neighbours and contacts is wide-spread.
Rotary Club of Stratford is running a short story contest (2500 words). Details available in the latest “Bridge” District Newsletter.
Trish and Nancy have committed to doing the Rotary Grants Quiz on-line in order to qualify the club to apply for grants for the next Rotary year. Barbara will look after signing the Memorandum of Understanding that is required. 
Barbara made royal blue and yellow poms-poms in support of Ukraine. Available at any meeting by donation. Ron noted that, in the May edition of “Rotarian”, unused District grant funds may be forwarded in support of the Ukraine.
Nancy reported on the plans and sign up for the STEGH lunch Thursday May 26th when we partner with St. Hilda’s-St. Luke’s church to serve upwards of 300 meals.
Trish noted that our roster for Home and Garden Show and the first half of the summer at the Horton Market is now completed.  Thanks to everyone.
Fresh Start Support Services
Karen Schouten and Suzanne Fier (pronounced ‘fee-yur’) attended and gave an extremely informative and enlightening presentation about their work at Fresh Start Support Services. Karen is about to go on a sabbatical and Suzanne will be the ED for the next year. Important points presented to us:
  • Renovations are underway at the main building on Centre Street to increase the number of apartments.
  • Talbot Street programming space recently opened – on the corner across from the Food Basics parking lot
  • There is an increased positive impact on the maternal – baby relationship when the women come to Fresh Start prior to the birth of their child
  • The average age of the mothers at Fresh Start is 28 years.
  • Karen spoke passionately about the need and programming model to address trauma experienced by these women in their earlier life.  Adverse Child Experiences such as abuse, neglect, household dysfunction (many moves, multiple partners of adult) leads to adults more likely to engage in risk behaviours such as: drugs, smoking and unplanned pregnancy. Often a woman who experiences a psychoemotional response to these experiences finds that there is a long-lasting effect.  If a child experiences 8 such Adverse Experiences, there is a likelihood that their lifespan is shortened by 20 years. On the average, the participants at Fresh Start have experienced 10 such events in their childhood.  This creates a cyclical set up where experiences from one generation are repeated in the next.  This leads to a chaotic home life and adults not protecting their own children.  Often these traumatic responses impact babies, whose gross motor skills and speech development may be delayed. The goal then is to stop the intergenerational trauma.
  • Approaches include:  acknowledging and addressing the childhood trauma and its effects through group and individual work which encourages a healthy mother-baby relationship, showing Christ’s unconditional love, being part of a “village raising a child”, connecting to resources, and moving to secure housing after Fresh Start
  • Funding for the Fresh Start Support Services is 85% fundraising including the baby bottle campaign between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day each year, when people take home a baby bottle to fill with loose change. 15% of funding is derived from social services and rent.
  • We watched a video outlining stories of women and their children from Fresh Start
Malcolm won the 50/50 and Bill received his 50/50 from the previous week.
Fine Master
Ron did an admirable job leading us through points of interest from the latest “Rotarian”.
What month is this for Rotary International?                                    Youth Services
Music – the value of music for seniors experiencing dementia – make up your playlists now – in case you need it in the future!
Happy Finns
Nancy – our two speakers and her daughter visiting
Pat – for the presentation, her family visited on Mother’s Day evening and the celebration for their retiring pastor Margaret Bell
Malcolm – our two presenters, Donna’s birthday
Cindy – thanks to Karen and Suzanne
Ron – 2 birthdays, 1 anniversary, found the bell Box!, 1 for each speaker
Trish – Thanks to Karen and Suzanne
Barbara – Mother’s Day with both daughters and our speakers
Visitors Welcome
St. Thomas

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