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As active as can be

Leongatha Probus Club has been taking many active measures to keep members connected over the last few difficult months.

The Club’s Executive Committee has had two virtual meetings via Facebook Messaging to attend to the financial matters of the Club. In June, all Committee members met, with all social distancing rules followed. While being very different, it was wonderful for members to see each other in person again.

The Club has also established a phone tree, with committee members phoning eight members each on a regular basis to keep in touch.

They have set up a closed Facebook group, which keeps 29 members connected. There are jokes, photos of past gatherings, puzzles, local news, and opening hours and takeaway menus from the town’s businesses that were unable to have patrons sit in for a meal or coffee.

It’s lovely to still have contact, especially as some members are concerned about leaving their homes.

The Club has also established a Boredom Buster Booth for members to exchange DVDs, magazines, jigsaw puzzles, and books while the library has been closed. There is knitting yarn available for the Knit & Natter group so members can continue to knit even though they can’t meet. This is set up in a “help yourself” bookshelf at one of the members’ homes. 

The Club’s Newsletter Editor emails all members who have the internet jokes and interesting videos twice a week, plus the monthly newsletter, which is also hand-delivered to members who don’t have email.

President Paull Lahn has organised a Racing Tip competition, with 18 members (including many who have no sporting interest – or skill! – whatsoever) to pick the winners in five races each week. There are many wild and wonderful ways to choose horses: by name, by jockey, by number and – would you believe it? – some even pore over the racing guide to select their horses. It produces lots of keen interest every Saturday waiting for Paull to email that day’s results. Members are learning that sometimes the form guide is no help at all. So much fun.

Before things with the AFL got suspended, Leongatha Probus Club had challenged Woorayl Probus Club (also in Leongatha) to vie for a Footy Tipping Trophy between the two Clubs, to see who could pick the most AFL wins. This will now have to wait until next year. But 21 of the Leongatha Probus Club members are participating in the online AFL tipping competition, with the Presidents Trophy a much-desired goal at the end of the season. Again, no skill or sporting knowledge is needed (but it helps!).

Members have found the Probus South Pacific emails a great way of learning how other Clubs are moving forward. The Club’s Newsletter Editor forwards on this email to members, and segments of it are put on the Gatha Probus Facebook page, enabling all members to keep up to date with Probus happenings. The Club is thankful to Probus South Pacific for reaching out to members in this way.

While members are keen to get back together, they are following all government rules and realise that, for members’ safety, they just have to wait. But they continue to keep connected as best as they can.