Posted by Geoff Andrews
The meeting was called to order by President Elect Jason at 1pm
Invocation:   Hope Sealey gave the blessing on the gathering and the food.
Visiting Rotarians:  Kahlil Parker introduced Taran Mackey, past president of Rotaract, as our only visiting Rotarian.  What was remarkable was that Kahlil was actually there in time to do so!
Llewellyn introduced his daughter Liana and JP’s guest Hannah was introduced even though JP was not there.
PE Jason noted that the Club received a thank you letter for the donation to Ranfurly Homes in PDG John’s honour, and also reminded us of the upcoming changeover events on June 20th at PDG Barry’s house and on June 27th at Baha Mar, which is also the installation event for DG Felix.  PP Lindsey reminded us that dues are due and that the Club has to pay RI on July 1st.  Richard Pyfrom thanked those who supported the fishing tournament and reminded us that there will be a Rotary boat next year.
PP Lindsey updated us on PP Robin, who had a pacemaker installed after a minor health scare.  Robin is recovering well and has declared himself bionic and better than ever, and maybe the sergeants will give him a break for the next couple of months (but probably not).
Sergeant:  PP Adam received a somewhat subdued welcome and fined several latecomers and John Joseph (no pin) and JP (for abandoning his guest).  Ben Albury stood in as guest joke teller with a story about ladies’ night and a graveyard.
MEMBER BIRTHDAYS:  David Allen celebrates on June 25th and Alan Burrows’ Michelle celebrates on June 23rd.  Craig and Jenny Pinder (7 years), Bob and Anita MacDonald (47 years!) and Jean-Marc and Julie Fellay (24 years) are all celebrating wedding anniversaries, congratulations to all.  PP Patrick Rollins (18 years), John Palmer (2 years) and PP Alan Wilson (36 years) have club anniversaries this week.
GUEST SPEAKER: Richard Pyfrom introduced long-time basketball coach Sam Nicholls from Texas, who has just completed his 16th Annual Basketball Smiles camp.  Sam met H.O. Nash basketball coach Patty Johnson some years ago at a coaches conference and has been coming to The Bahamas ever since to conduct free camps.  Under the theme of “Smiles and Hope”, the camp offers much-needed hope to young persons, and although the camp is free, no child is turned away.  Sam brings a strong contingent of volunteer coaches and estimates that they have reached over 10,000 boys and girls over the past 16 years, and thanked Rotary for helping take the camp to another level, as many Rotarians have contributed to the effort in various ways.
In addition to offering basketball instruction, shorts, a shirt, meals and a basketball, the camp also offers its participants life lessons.  The camp includes scripture readings and other inspirational messages, and stresses the importance of education, respect (for self and others), and hard work during practice.
Coach Johnson also spoke briefly and thanked Sam for his years of dedication and thanked Rotary for its support as well. Coach Johnson noted that the camp has made a difference in the lives of so many, ultimately helping persons to get scholarships, jobs, etc.  She also noted that several national team players have emerged from the camps over the years.
We also heard from two of the campers, who illustrated how well the camps have made a difference in their lives.  We heard that the camp is the highlight of their summer and how it has made a permanent positive impact not only on their basketball skills but on their lives.  Further we were told that the coaches always encourage theme, focus on all aspects of their development especially education, and we were thanked again for our continued support of the camp.
Sam closed by thanking us again and reminding us of his three rules for the camp:  always show respect, go full speed, and pick up all the trash you find.  He also pointed out how campers are encouraged to learn from their mistakes and take the Next Best Action.
PP Geoff thanked Sam for his years of great work with Basketball Smiles and thanked Coach Patty and the campers for their great perspectives on the success of the camp.
PE Jason thanked the members then closed the meeting with a toast to Rotary Around the Country!