Probus Club of Morialta Story


The Rotary Club of Morialta decided, in its second year of meeting, to investigate the establishment of a Probus Club. In consultation with the Rotary Club of Campbelltown, the sponsors of the Probus Club of Campbelltown meeting at Magill, it was recognized that a long waiting list for membership of that club did not allow people to enjoy the benefits which could be available to them and establishment of second Probus Club in the area was necessary.

At one regular meeting of the Rotary Club of Morialta a speaker addressed us on the purpose of Probus Clubs and the manner of establishing them. The club then decided to provide a second Probus Club for the area if the need could be substantiated.

Members were asked to nominate prospective members – being a club of younger members ourselves made this a more difficult task as most of our associates and acquaintances did not qualify for the age or retirement requirements of Probus, but a few of the “elder statement” amongst us provided some names of their contemporaries who could gain from membership of Probus and some of we younger members of the Club asked parents and grandparents for names also.

Consultation was held with Probus Club of Campbelltown concerning those on their “waiting list” and the desirability of having a second club nearby – even meeting in the same building. The result was a decision that it would be good to establish a second club in a different area – preferably north of Montacute Road – to enable people to have access to a venue nearer their homes. The consultation also resulted in some names from their waiting list being shared with us for contacting regarding being foundation members of a new Club to be formed at Newton.

Rotarians were asked to make a verbal contact with those they considered possible members of a Probus Club and the names of people expressing interest were handed to the organiser (John Lawrie). This caused some difficulty – there were nowhere near as many names on the end list as on the beginning and we had to scout around a bit wider to find people who might be willing to take office in the proposed Club.

Eventually letters were sent out to people asking them to respond to three questions if they were still interested in joining Probus.

  1. “I will be attending the meeting to form a Probus Club of Morialta on Monday 10 March at 9.45 am.”
  2. “I am unable to attend this meeting but would be interested in joining the club.”
  3. “If asked, I would be prepared to serve on the Foundation Management Committee of the club.”

In addition they were asked to indicate any friends who might appreciate an invitation to attend this meeting.

On the 10 March a small group gathered at the Old Council Chambers on Newton Road Newton to establish the club. Two people had been approached beforehand to determine their willingness to take the offices of Chairman and Secretary, and the meeting decided to convene as the Probus Club of Morialta at the invitation and under the sponsorship of the Rotary Club of Morialta.

The inaugural Chairman was Gordon Young and Secretary was Bill Crawford.

Peter Cox and John Lawrie attended this inaugural meeting and shared the aims and objectives of Probus as indicated in the manual “How to form a Probus Club”. The manual proved most effective in helping us through the preliminary steps of investigating the need and then the establishing the Club on the right foundations.

The Rotary Club of Morialta provided the necessary items for the establishment of the Probus Club of Morialta, including Probus lapel badges, President’s collar, postage, advertising, cost of meeting place and even refreshment for the first meeting.

While numbers were small, it was an enthusiastic group who looked forward to the opportunities of growing and sharing fellowship and discoveries together.

The Probus Club Committee put in much hard work and much credit must go to the inaugural secretary, Bill Crawford, and President Gordon Young for their leadership and guidance over the first years of operation.

John Lawrie

Charter Member, Rotary Club of Morialta