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President Thaya's Message

3 November 2021


My fellow Rotarians and friends of Rotary


Last Sunday, the 31st of October 2021, we launched our "MIND YOUR HEALTH" campaign in front of an august audience at the Strathfield Golf Club. I want to summarise the event's speeches and the presentation explaining "MIND YOUR HEALTH" for the sake of all those who couldn't make it to the event.


The world is facing a multifaceted crisis; an unprecedented pandemic health crisis, an economic crisis, a societal crisis, a racial crisis, an environmental crisis, and rising geopolitical tensions. However, the main impacts are health-related; There are 264-300 million individuals worldwide living with depression, 284-300 million living with anxiety-related disorders, 46-60 million living with bipolar affective disorders, and approximately 16 million living with eating disorders.

"MIND YOUR HEALTH", defined and developed by the Rotary Club of Strathfield, is a program of many projects. It is a program and a movement for everyone to understand that "MIND YOUR HEALTH" is a critical mantra for all of us to realize that life can be complicated and difficult. The "MIND YOUR HEALTH" concept recognises the gaps in understanding this topic and our calling to provide tools, resources, and catalysts for positive change.


Our first project of the "MIND YOUR HEALTH" program is a social media campaign that encourages people affected by depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues, caused by COVID-stress, to seek professional help. We identified that the main problem is that most people with mental health issues delay recognising the need to ask for assistance. With our project, hopefully, we can help break down some of these barriers.


We are initially partnering and promoting the following three organizations with our campaign:


Relationships Australia NSW

Reconnect Wellbeing Support is a free 12-month service for older Australians experiencing feelings of isolation and disconnection due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The restrictions of the past year left many unable to maintain their usual connections with family, friends, and community, as well as access health services and support networks. Reconnect encourages re-engagement through educational, health-related, social, recreational, or counselling-focused support, depending on the client's unique situation.


Head to Health

Head to Health has been designed to help address the significant impact of the ongoing lockdown restrictions on the mental health of individuals and communities. Our 'Pop-up' clinics provide mental health supports by phone, video, and in-person from Monday to Friday. Funded by the Australian Government, the pop-up clinics provide a single-entry point for people living across NSW to access a range of mental health services.



A comprehensive range of social and welfare services to the multicultural communities, especially those of East Asian backgrounds, e.g., Chinese, Koreans, Indonesians, Vietnamese, Singaporean, Malaysian, etc. Our services include Aged Care Services, Disability Services, settlement and health services, childcare services, etc. In addition, we provide emotional support for the Chinese speaking community, especially those experiencing depression, anxiety, stress, isolation, loneliness, or burnout because of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Rotary International has six focus areas, two of which are directly related to health. This whole concept of 'MIND YOUR HEALTH" is an opportunity for Rotary to serve, create awareness and change lives. An opportunity for Rotary to be the catalyst between people and professional service providers.


The late Martin Luther King Jr once said, "Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step."


So, the "MIND YOUR HEALTH" movement will continue and grow - with a program of projects to increase our impact and expand our reach with synergized partnerships and engagements.


Rotarians will continue to address Mental Health Issues Head On. This is the first step.

Yours in Rotary,


Thaya Ponnia    


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Last Update Tuesday November 02, 2021