President - Dorothy Webber
Vice President – Margaret Jenkins
Secretary – Geraldine McCorkell
Treasurer – Neville Gibb
Membership Officer – Len Jeffers
Publicity Officer – Wendy Sturgess
Newsletter Editor – Heather Wallace
Welfare Officer – Lorraine Knox
Standing: Neville, Lorraine, Margaret, Len, Wendy, Corrie, Heather;
Sitting: Julie, Anne, Dorothy, Geraldine. Apology - Terry Case.
Thank you so much for inspiring and establishing the Coin Collectors group at U3A Benalla. Your understanding of coin collections and collectors and the way in which you have engaged and followed through with group members, have resulted in an ongoing group of keen coin collectors. Your personal coin collection and passion for coin collecting proved inspirational! We wish you and Annette well in your return to Echuca, where you both grew up, Perhaps you might set up a Coin Collectors group there. You will be missed.
Bev Lee, Programs Committee
We have a new Tech Savvy course particularly for beginning phone users, however Android tablet users are also welcome. We noted a demand for this course on enrolment day and are fortunate that Robyn Lukey, who had commenced as a Be Connected mentor just before the Covid Break in March last year, responded to our request to take the group. The course begins on Wednesday 17 March from 12.15 to 1.45 in the U3A Meeting Room. Please telephone Robyn on 0403 164 931 or email firstname.lastname@example.org let her know your learning needs and that you would like to attend.
Tech Savvy Beginners (Android Phones) aims to help participants to gain skills and confidence in using their Android Mobile Phone. It is focused on achieving learning skills while at the same time having fun operating their Android Mobile Phone. It also aims to prepare learners to move on to self directed learning using the Be Connected online learning resources.
Proposed Content - The following topics will be covered:-
COVID Safe Plan for U3A Benalla Version 2
Dorothy Webber and Margaret Jenkins, Monday 1 March 2021
Update: Following the introduction of a Covid Stage 4 Lockdown from the 13 to the 17th March, the planned Meet and Mingle in the Benalla Gardens on the 17th March has been cancelled.
Original notice which was also in February's newsletter: With numbers for Meet and Mingle's first session likely to exceed the social distancing capacity of the U3A Meeting Room, we have decided to begin the year with another relaxing session under the beautiful trees near the Art Gallery. We will meet between 10 and 11.30 am.
‘Bring Your Own’ morning tea, tea/coffee/beverages, chair, cushion and make the most of this wonderful opportunity to meet and mingle!
We look forward to seeing you there.
Meet and Mingle Convenor
U3A Benalla and District’s Annual General Meeting will be held at Meet and Mingle on Wednesday March 17th at 10 am. I would like to thank retiring members Bill Parris and Pat Gardner for the highly valued work they have done on the Committee for a number of years.
Positions are now vacant for two members. If you are interested in stepping up and joining the committee, the President’s report from 2020 and the 2021 Executive/Committee Nomination Form can be found on the ‘About/Our U3A’ page of the website.
There will be more information in the next newsletter.
Enrolment days were held at the Benalla Town Hall in January, however it is not too late to enrol.
New Members in 2021 Membership fees are $30 per person or $60 per couple with a newsletter e-mailed monthly. There is a surcharge of $10 pa for newsletters sent by mail. A Membership Application/ Renewal Form can be downloaded from the Join Us page or collected with program documents from the RedB4 Bookshop in Bridge Street (next to Hide's Bakery).
Members who were enrolled in 2020: Due to the disrupted 2020 and problems with 2021 accommodation, Membership Fees for existing members have been suspended for 2021. You will still pay a fee of $10 if you require a posted monthly newsletter. An individualised Membership Renewal Form was emailed or posted to existing members. Please print your form, make any corrections to your details, then add your program selections. If you can’t locate your individualised form, complete a regular Membership Form for 2021.
Remember, late enquiries are always welcome. Enrolment documents can be downloaded from the Join Us page on this website during the year. Contact our Secretary Geraldine on 5762 2134 or 0408 522 662 or email@example.com for questions and further information. .
With renovations continuing at the Seniors Community Centre, Enrolment Days were held this year at the Benalla Town Hall. Numbers were down in terms of attendance, however many enrolment forms had already been received via ReadB4 books; post, email or delivery to Len's home,
It was wonderful to chat to new and existing members who had questions, to catch up with other convenors and to hear updates from President, Dorothy Webber. Although Covid-safe regulations meant that members couldn't mingle at morning tea this year, many members could be found catching up with friends at local cafes after enrolling.
The following most informative article was written for the Benalla Ensign by Margaret Jenkins for Age Friendly Benalla. Margaret is also Research/Grants Officer on the U3A Benalla & District's Committee of Management.
“Mr Dom Testoni, CEO of Benalla Rural City Council has announced that Benalla Rural City Council are spending $130,000 to upgrade of the interior of the Benalla Senior’s Centre located in Fawckner Drive Benalla. The funding is from two sources: namely Drought relief funds as well as Federal Government funding.
The Benalla Senior’s Centre is a multipurpose facility which houses activities of the Benalla Senior Citizens, the Benalla Bridge Club and U3A Benalla.
The entire air conditioning unit is being replaced with a new system which has environmentally friendly refrigerant gas. The air conditioning machinery will be in the same place and use the same duct work. The work is to be completed mid January 2021 and will cost $70,000.
The switch board at the Benalla Senior’s Centre is being converted with a backup generator system, so that if the power goes out, the Benalla Senior’s Centre can be used as a Refuge point for Benalla.
The switch board of the Benalla Town Hall is being similarly converted with a generator backup so that it also can be used as a Refuge when required.
Internally in the Benalla Senior’s Centre building there are a series of alterations planned with the Stage in the main auditorium to be removed. This will allow for the building of a new office for the Benalla Senior Citizens. An area adjacent to this will become storage for the bowling mats used by the Benalla Seniors.
The Benalla Bridge club is to have slightly increased storage as their area will incorporate the area occupied previously by the steps to the former stage as well as their current storage facility.
U3A Benalla have been offered the use of the former Benalla Senior’ Office as a second meeting room.
Upgrades to the main kitchen area will see a new dish washer and the incorporation of the stove from the other small kitchen. It is anticipated that a standalone glass double fronted refrigerator will allow storage for all groups using the centre.
These internal upgrades are estimated to cost about $60,000. The builder for the project has been selected and expects that the internal work will be completed by Monday 8 February 2020.
U3A Benalla expects to resume classes on Monday 15 February 2020 in their current U3A room.
Due to the building works, Registration Day for U3A Benalla will be held on Monday 18 January 2021 and Wednesday 20 January 2021 from 9.30am to 11.30am in the Benalla Town Hall.
Further information regarding Registration Day can be obtained from Mrs Dorothy Webber on 5762 2116.”
Dorothy Webber and Margaret Jenkins
Enrolment days will be held at Benalla Town Hall on Monday 18th January – 9.30am to 11.00am and Wednesday 20th January – 9.30am to 11.00am. Due to the disruption of classes in 2020 during the Covid-19 Virus lockdown, the U3A Committee agreed that there will be no additional payment in 2021 for members who enrolled and paid in 2020. However, if you received your Newsletter by mail, there will be a cost of $10 payable to cover cost of postage.
New members enrolling in 2021 will pay the $30 fee, plus $10 to cover postage if they wish to receive the Newsletter by mail.
Membership forms were e-mailed to existing members late last week. Please check the enrolment form is correct to ensure that your details are current. Put a cross against the classes you are interested in participating and return to U3A on enrolment days, RedB4 Bookshop or mail to U3A Benalla, P O Box 674, Benalla 3671.
Only enrol in preferred courses that you will be attending. In the past members have ticked the box of a number of activities but only attended two or three during the semester. Due to Co-vid restrictions on the number of people who can be in one room at the same time, there will be a limit on number of class participants. Please ensure you do wish to do the course that you have ticked and make sure your completed enrolment forms are returned as soon as possible. If you change your mind about a course please let the convenor know so that someone on the waiting list can be contacted.
Due to room availability some courses may not commence until halfway through February or the first week in March, or may be held in alternative locations. Your Committee are working hard to ensure that you have the best venue for the number of participants in your activity.
Once enrolments have been received your Convenor will be in contact with you to confirm your enrolment and advise when the course will begin.
Due to Covid restrictions there will be no serving of tea and coffee at Enrolment Day this year. Bring your own bottle of water and make sure you are wearing a mask whilst in the Town Hall precinct.
Attached to the January Newsletter and on the Join Us page of the web site you will find a blank Membership Application/Renewal Enrolment form, Program Guide, Full Timetable with Dates.
The newly released U3A Benalla and District Covid-Safe Plan is included in he January Newsletter and in a post on this page. Please read this plan carefully and comply with its requirements at all times.
Committee of Management
This post featured in the January Newsletter and could be read in conjunction with the information on the Join Us page under Join on the menu above.
2020 was a testing year for U3A Benalla. This year, 2021, we are still in recovery mode from COVID-19. To complicate our situation, there will be limits to the numbers that can attend the Senior Citizens Centre until there is a relaxation to COVID-19 conditions.
On a brighter note, programs not scheduled at the Senior Citizens Centre will be up and running as normal (subject to any prevailing COVID-19 conditions).
We hope we will see you at our programs in 2021.
Due to the disrupted 2020 and problems with 2021 accommodation the committee has determined that Membership Fees for existing members will be suspended for 2021. That means all current members will not pay a membership fee for 2021. You will still pay a fee of $10 if you require a posted monthly newsletter. There is no fee for an emailed newsletter.
All new members will be required to pay a $30 membership fee.
To assist you with program selection an 'individualised' Membership Renewal Form was attached to an email/letter posted on 8th January. Please print your form, make any corrections to your details, then add your program selections.
Return the signed form to one of the following, with any required postage fee attached:
Completed forms, with no payments involved, can be scanned, and emailed to Len Jeffers (firstname.lastname@example.org) or delivered to 108 Thomas St. Benalla.
If you are unable to print your Membership Renewal form you can use a blank Membership Application/Renewal form available at RedB4 Bookshop.
Thank you for your membership in 2020. We look forward to seeing you again in 2021.
Secretary U3A Benalla
Members of U3A Benalla were saddened to hear of the passing of Gwen Cheetham on Tuesday 17th November 2020.
Gwen was involved with the Singing for Fun and Harmony groups for 14 years. She was part of our concerts as well as our regular sessions held three Thursday mornings each month. We all enjoyed her company and with her pure soprano voice she was a very dependable member of the group.
Life ball was another group in which Gwen participated for several years. When she decided that she was finding the pace of the game a bit much, Gwen became an excellent umpire. It was well known that you couldn’t get away with much if Gwen was umpiring.
Rupe was involved with Astronomy or Exploring the Universe and Gwen supported Rupe by often sending one of her favourite slices or cakes to Astronomy for the group’s supper.
Rupe and Gwen kept in close contact with their adult family and grandchildren and had lots of visits from the family.
Gwen’s other interest was her garden which she kept in immaculate condition. She was also an excellent cook and this fact was commented on by several family members at her funeral on 24th November at the Benalla lawn cemetery.
Thank you, Gwen for some excellent memories. We will miss you.
Our sympathy is extended to Rupe.
Please note that this week's social gathering is on Tuesday 10, not Wednesday 10 November as mentioned in the advertisement on the first page of the newsletter. Fortunately it was correctly written in on the Calendar and website!
We look forward to seeing you from 10 am to 11.30 am - bring your own morning tea and chair!
It's time to provide another opportunity for all U3A members to catch up with one another, this time through an informal 'Meet and Mingle' morning tea session in the gardens next to the Art Gallery on Wednesday 21 October from 10 to 11.30 am. By then three months will have passed since our last gathering in the gardens on Wednesday 22 July!
‘Bring Your Own’ morning tea, tea/coffee/beverages, chair, cushion, rug if cold and make the most of this wonderful opportunity to meet and mingle! We are hopeful that numbers permitted to mingle will be increased on October 19, however if not, we will cluster in socially distancing groups of ten.
If you would like to be part of this activity, please contact Heather Wallace on 0418 353 244, if possible by Monday October 19th.
Update 16/10/2020: this pilot program has been withdrawn due to lack of numbers.
Do you have an unfinished object or two you would like to finish which ‘just isn't happening’ or you are ‘finding slow going’? We've introduced a monthly afternoon tea-break time 'Unfinished Objects' discussion group using Zoom.
The plan is to work on our project throughout the month, ideally commencing work on our unfinished object (or project) at 1pm on the date of the monthly Monday afternoon meeting. At 2.20pm we would take a break, pour ourselves a cup of tea or coffee, click on the link to our Zoom meeting, then join like-minded others to share news of our projects from 2.30 to 3.15 pm. After leaving the meeting we would return to work on our projects for an hour or so before packing up for the day!
If you would like to join in our next Unfinished Objects on Monday 12 October from 2.30 to 3.15 pm – here’s the link to Join Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 779 7364 2602
Phone Bev on 0478 607 838 or email email@example.com if you would like to be involved in the trial sessions.
On Wednesday 22nd of July 16 members met in the Gardens near the Art Gallery for lunch, chats & laughter. We were blessed with a beautiful sunny winter’s day. It was agreed we need to do it again, so are looking forward to meeting together in the gardens on a Wine Appreciation day (4th Wednesday) after the Stage 3 reductions announced on Sunday 2 August are lifted.
Photos: Bev Lee and Heather Wallace
It has been wonderful to observe the way in which a group of convenors and committee members have taken on the challenge to learn how to use Zoom during the Covid break.
From early ‘play’ with lots of rehearsals emerged an advertised session on Zoom for convenors; liaison with U3A Network Victoria and subsequent involvement with a regional mentor; now regular Zoom classes in Demystifying Psychology; Investment and Sustainability and regular Committee meetings.
Learning to use zoom has involved a learning experience for most if not all of the members involved. All in the space of a few months! Congratulations to all involved.
At a recent Zoom Committee Meeting it was decided that it is now time for all U3A participants to take the opportunity to catch up with one another, so it is proposed to have lunch with our U3A friends in the gardens next to the Art Gallery on WEDNESDAY 22 JULY at 12.00 noon.
U3A members are asked to ‘BYO’ lunch, tea/coffee/beverages, chair, cushion, rug if cold and make the most of this wonderful opportunity to discuss what we have been doing during our time away from attending U3A activities. This will depend on numbers that can gather, and of course, the WEATHER.
If you are looking to be part of this activity, please contact Heather Wallace on 0418 353 244, if possible by Sunday July 19th.
Ken Whan was a man for the people. He had a very full life working with many groups both on Council and in industry, but he never forgot the community itself, being there to offer advice and general support when needed. He was very approachable, had a listening ear and provided encouragement where necessary.
Ken was an active member of U3A, with a sense of humour and a hint of cynicism. His input into the activities he attended was always welcome.
Ken served on the Benalla Shire Council (and was Shire President from 1991-1994), and Delatite Shire (and was Delatite Mayor in 2000). As a Councillor, Ken believed in Local Government and the need to develop more accessible lines of communication between residents and council.
Not only was Ken involved in U3A he had many and varied interests in Benalla and was associated with the Benalla Library, Friends of BPACC, Friends of the Art Gallery and Warby Ranges Landcare.
His list of achievements was also very impressive – being a member of the United Dairy Farmers Vic (1961-985); Save Mokoan Committee; Elder and chairman of Benalla Uniting Church Parish; Historical Society Secretary; Mens Probus member. These are only a few of his achievements over the years.
Ken was one of the very few Councillors who worked with the then Management of Winton Motor Raceway when they approached the State Government for the rezoning of the Planning Amendment for the Raceway and surrounds, ensuring the future of the circuit and the benefits that it brings to the Benalla Rural City.
Ken will be greatly missed by the Benalla community and especially by the long list of friends and acquaintances he has been associated with over the years.
Ken had time for everyone – we will miss his friendly smile and quick wit.
Our condolences to Val, who has supported him for many years, and the Whan family.
It was extremely sad to hear that Godfrey Marple passed away on Wednesday 13 May. Memories of Godfrey are reflected in these photographs from U3A Benalla's website collection from 2015 to 2019. They reflect Godfrey's involvement and enjoyment of U3A, his love for his wife and soulmate Carole and his lifelong dedication to the wool industry.
Godfrey, in partnership with Carole, clearly enjoyed convening Art Appreciation for a number of years, continuing to attend after handing over the convenor role to Neville Gibb and Meg Dillon at the end of 2017. Godfrey was also a long standing member of Terry Case's Politics and Current Affairs class.
When Carole decided to join Writing Workshop in 2015, Godfrey 'sat in', then quickly decided to join himself. The sharing of stories about their working lives in the rural sector by Godfrey, David Palmer and Ian Burkinshaw sparked the flame that resulted in David being encouraged to offer the 'Stock and Land' course in 2018. You can find some of the stories Godfrey shared at Godfrey's Stories.
Until relatively recently Godfrey was a judge at the Benalla Agricultural Show and still clearly treasured times spent working with sheep and wool. Godfrey drew on his networks in the wool industry in arranging an excursion for the Stock and Land group to the Toland Merino Stud, a highlight for all participants.
Godfrey will be sadly missed. Carole, please know that you have our love and support at this sad time.
Convenor, Writing Workshop 2015-2019
Class member, Stock and Land 2018-2019
Demystifying Psychology – An Invitation to all U3A Members
Starting on Friday 15th May, Demystifying Psychology will host twice monthly “zoom” internet discussion Groups on the 3rd Friday from 2 to 3 pm and the 1st Wednesday from 10.30 to 11.30 am. The discussion groups will continue until we receive notification that groups such as ours may recommence. All U3A members are welcome.
The purpose of the Demystifying Psychology discussion group is to enjoy informative, relaxed chats and to share ideas. You can bring a topic, join a topic, or just listen. Have a look at U3A Benalla website for some pre-covid19 background - https://u3abenalla.weebly.com/demystifying-psychology
How to participate:
NOTE - help to download Zoom is available:
PC users - general inquiries - call Jane 0437 621 57
Apple users - call Jenny Sawyer (Tech Savvy Convener) 0409 545 18 (Thanks Jenny :))
1 Use this link/password/meeting ID for every Third Friday PM discussion group
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 770 1131 3324
2 Use this link/password/meeting ID for every First Wednesday AM discussion group
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 721 5943 0694
For more information, contact Jane Rushworth 0437 621 575 firstname.lastname@example.org
This page is for 'general' news - some will be 'just in' news notices of changes to timetables or news of meetings; other items will be celebratory, some will be sad, there will be some longer news items on topics of interest.
Contributions and suggestions can be sent via the 'Contact Us' form or by emailing or telephoning the web manager on 5762 8171.
A Courses and Activities Suggestion Box is available for your course ideas and suggestions.
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