District 9800 Stories
What connections did you make?  Did you find some new friends and plan collaborations at the Multi-District Conference? 
At the Homelessness Forum the room was full. It is a statement of how committed we are to address this problem on so many levels. We understand in the District Support Team that Clubs are looking to connect further and the opportunity for this will happen in the next few weeks. 
Thank you to everyone that came with projects to share, stories  to tell, new friends to meet. To the Rotary Club of Canterbury,thank you for facilitating us packing over 35,000 emergency food packs for relief use in disaster situations. I met a gentleman from the public who walked in to assist. His experience of Rotary surely is what we are all about…helping others while having fun.
It was an utter privilege presenting the highest honour of Rotary International to Gordon McKern OAM; The “Service Above Self” Award. Congratulations Gordon, again.
Past District Governor Gordon McKern has become the first person outside the Melbourne Metropolitan area,to be honoured with Rotary’s prestigious Service Above Self award.
He was presented with the award at the Multi District Conference on February 17th by Rotary International’s Past Foundation Director and Chair of the Rotary Peace Centre Committee, Bryn Styles.
Gordon is one of only five people in District 9800 in the last 20 years to receive the accolade, and he was recognised for his commitment to helping others by volunteering his time and talents.
As District Governor, Gordon led efforts to raise millions of dollars to help create the Rotary Bone Marrow Donor Institute in Melbourne.
“When you’re District Governor, you have a cause in mind which you want the clubs to get involved in,” he said. “We wanted to raise $2 million but we managed to raise $4 million to go towards the institute.”
Extracted from an article in the Bendigo Advertiser, 26th February 2019 https://www.bendigoadvertiser.com.au/story/5924178/local-hero-honoured-for-selfless-service/?
Congratulations to Conference Chair Mark Stephens, the team from Districts 9790, 9810 and 9820 and our own Rotarians who gave so much to make this event such an outstanding success.  
The speakers were inspirational; the opportunities to network, collaborate and collect new ideas superb.  
Many thanks to RIPR Stephanie Urchick, PRIP Ian Riseley, PRID Bryn Styles for their friendship and warm welcomes.
See https://www.dropbox.com/sh/sk197cpy3imwsou/AAC-XV1GJhoQT2jfwS7uVMVIa?dl=0   for videos and pictures from the conference.  Thanks go to Russell Brewer (Brighton North) for the D9800 photos