Rotary’s Spiritual Enlightenment

June 25 2016

By Matthew Scott – Director of Club Communications 

THERE’S a common phrase in Rotary, that we do not mix religion and politics. After all, Rotary is open to anyone, and it’s our differences that make it the successful international service organisation which it has been for over a century now.

However, that all changed one Thursday night recently, when the Rotary Club of Bendigo South proudly supported the Stronger Youth project in Bendigo, led by Fr Rob Galea.

It all started out last December, when Fr Rob made a guest appearance at the Rotary Club’s Christmas meeting. Informing members and guests about the true message of Christmas, as well as belting out a few musical tunes for those in attendance.

On the night, Fr Rob spoke about the work that he does in Bendigo through the Stronger Youth project. This started a conversation going with several members of the Club on just how they could lend a hand and support such a worthwhile cause.

Fast forward to June 2016, and Fr Rob again returned to the Club to receive the donation. On the night Fr Rob spoke of the current situation that today’s youth face. This includes many and varied issues, some relating to living in broken homes but also youth mental health issues.

Members learnt of the programs, rallies and D-Groups that form a part of the Stronger program, as well as finding out about the youth space which is being created in the former horse stables at the rear of Bendigo’s St Killians church.

Rotary supports many youth related programs throughout the year including hosting exchange students and leadership courses, however for me in my role as Youth Services Director, my proudest moment this year would have to be through my Rotary Club supporting the Stronger Youth program.

As someone who has seen the Stronger Youth program in action through my work in the education sector, I know that the work that Fr Rob and the team do is vital for today’s secondary aged youth.

Fr Rob spoke of just how appreciated the donation actually is to the Stronger Youth project, and how thankful he was for Rotary’s involvement.

Hopefully there will be continued opportunities for Rotary to assist Fr Rob and the Stronger Youth team into the future.


Rotarian Matthew Scott presents Fr Rob Galea with the Club’s donation. Also our Club’s first use of a large novelty cheque for such occasions.