June 2020

PRESIDENT’S REPORT

Mal

MEMBERSHIP RENEWALS
A few years ago, we introduced 12 month memberships which run from the date of joining. However, we still have a large number of members who have a traditional June 30th renewal date.

As we have been unable to conduct our normal fundraising activities, our cash flow has almost dried up and we ask “30th June” members to renew as soon as you receive your Renewal reminder.

We always allow a short period of grace however we remind you that our Terms and Conditions provide that “Under VMR Whitsunday’s Constitution, membership may be terminated if fees are in arrears for two months or more”.

We have again held our membership charges at 2018 rates. Membership renewals and new memberships can continue to be made online via our website.

AWESOME SUPPORT – FROM COLORADO!
Secretary Roger Wodson did some detective work recently, and tracked down a gentleman who has been making regular monthly donations for a number of years. He discovered that he is from Colorado in the USA!

A letter of sincere thanks was duly dispatched and the following came back by return email:

In August 2018 this armchair sailor was sitting with his family in an Airlie Beach hotel room looking forward to our weeklong charter on Yaminda. So excited I was that I had to fire up my new portable marine VHF just to, you know, check it out. After about a minute of scanning I came across a conversation that involved the retrieval of a dead kayaker from shore by one of your rescue boats. My son and I were in a bit of shock and were baffled that we couldn’t find any coverage of this major event in any of the news feeds.

Long story short, after returning to the States I did finally figure out that this was one of your training exercises. Whew! Anyhoo, [sic] in consideration of the very serious (fake and real) work you have to do I’m glad to help out in this little way. Honestly as I research other chartering opportunities around the world I realize what a gem you have there and I plan to drag the family back in short order.”

A great story and recognition of what we put into the community, and we look forward to meeting him officially when he comes back over here. As previously mentioned, our fundraising has all but stopped at the moment so every bit counts, and this one is a bit special. our post received over 15,000 views on Facebook.

All fundraising activities have been put on hold, including the Friday night raffles at Dingo Beach Hotel, and our much loved sausage sizzles. We depend upon fundraising to keep our activities going, and if you wish to support us you can make donations on our website.

WE’RE STILL HERE!
All members can feel assured that we are still here and ready to provide assistance to the boating and island communities of the Whitsundays. Due to the COVID-19 restrictions we’ve had to adapt and make some necessary changes however this has all been necessary to protect our valued volunteers and the public. Hopefully, this will change in the next few weeks and we can get back to full operational mode, with regular training and drills to keep our crews ready for any emergency.

VMR Whitsunday Marine Rescue Services are continuing, with 24 hour operational preparedness as usual.

Our Whisper Bay Radio Base will be open on weekends from 7.00 am to 5.00 pm, monitoring VHF channels 16, 67, 81 and 82. Outside of these hours leave your radio on channel 16 and your call will be monitored by Whitsunday VTS or Mackay VMR (daylight hours) and they will relay any emergencies to us.  

Any emergency telephone calls for assistance should continue to be made to 4946 7207, which is monitored 24/7. As always, if you are in a life threatening situation please call 000.

ACTIVATIONS 
The weather has been less than ideal for boating, and coupled with health directives it has made for a quiet time for us on the water. May has seen just 4 activations, including a search in the middle of the night around Langford and Stonehaven after a flare sighting was reported – nothing was found.

You can read all the details about our activations HERE. Alternatively, join our Facebook Page to read them soon after they happen.

STAY SAFE OUT THERE
Our volunteers have been serving the Whitsundays under various organisation names for over 55 years, saving lives at sea. And we want you and us to be here for a long time more.

PLEASE FOLLOW THE HEALTH GUIDELINES BEING PUT OUT BY GOVERNMENT. DON’T BE THE ONE WHO IGNORES THE VALUABLE ADVICE AND PUT YOURSELF AND OTHERS AT RISK. CORONAVIRUS IS A VERY SERIOUS ISSUE FOR EVERY SINGLE ONE OF US, AND IT MUST BE TREATED AS SUCH.

Please comply with all social distancing and isolation guidelines not only for your own sake, but the safety of your family and friends and everybody in this great community we all live in.

Kind regards,
Mal Priday
President, VMR Whitsundays


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