It was so good to see about 60 members of U3A and their friends in the audience. In total I think there were over 100 in the auditorium for the morning, which was great to see.
Bev has run our website for the past ten years, taken a huge number of excellent photos for the Website, as well as being a constant assistant to Heather Wallace with the Newsletter. The Website and Newsletter have certainly helped keep our members well informed about what has been happening at U3A Benalla and have contributed to our membership reaching 400 this year.
Also, Bev initiated our Tech Savvy Seniors program in 2015, developed and convened Family Research courses for the past five years and has convened the memoir writing group for the past 10 years. Bev has also been a member of the Program Committee and mentor to new Convenors, developed and produces our Convenors A-Z each year and introduced the Course Proposal form often used with new Convenors to outline the course they are going to run.
So, congratulations Bev. You thoroughly deserve the Life Membership
Also, thank you to Dorothy Webber for running Collectors for several years. Dorothy has had many, many topics for Collectors, and many family heirlooms have been brought along and enjoyed by members of the group. Dorothy is resting Collectors for 2024.
David Palmer has decided that the Wise Guys Book Group is ‘back to the drawing board’ and won’t be offered next year. Thank you, David, for convening a book group for men in 2023.
Groups making transitions to new convenors or adding new co-convenors in 2024, include Tech Savvy - Android, Family Research and Sky’s the Limit. Thank you to Ruth Jelliff, Deb Saunders, Andrew McFarlane and others for stepping up.
In the background the Program Committee has been working toward the program for 2024. We have one entirely new course: Cooking Solo. This is going to be convened by Gwen Mildren and Val Whan. The course is designed for men who are cooking for themselves and want to gain some practical skills as well as knowledge about the nutritional benefits of various foods, seasonal cooking and useful gadgets.
Also, in 2024, Ukes4Fun is offering three strands, a new group for beginners ‘Getting Started’, a weekly strumming group ‘Just Jamming’, and a ‘Drop-in’ session for those ready to move on to more complex strumming and chord progressions.
U3A Benalla is getting bigger, and for 2024 we are looking for a Course Co-ordinator to coordinate new course suggestions and support new Convenors, and an Assistant Secretary to help Geraldine with some of her duties as Secretary. For further information on both positions please give me a call on 0424 454 313. The Course Co-ordinator and the Assistant Secretary will be part of the U3A Benalla Committee.
Our Christmas lunch held at the Red Stag on Friday 17th November was a great success. Good food, scenic surrounds and great company made for a delightful day. My thanks to Nicole McFarlane for liaising with the restaurant, and to Corrie Witlox for organising the bookings and the bus.
Enrolment Day is Wednesday 10th January 2024 in the Auditorium of the Benalla Seniors and Community Centre, from 9.30 am to 12 noon. The Committee is hoping that all Convenors will be able to attend so that they can answer questions from new people wanting to join U3A Benalla.
2023 has been a very successful year for U3A Benalla. My sincere thanks to all Convenors for the time and effort they have put into their courses to make them so interesting. It is the Convenors who make U3A in Benalla such a great organisation.
On behalf of the Committee, I wish you all a Happy Christmas, and look forward to seeing you next year at our U3A Benalla activities.