Home' The Great Southern Star : March 22nd 2016 Contents “THE STAR”, Tuesday, March 22, 2016 - PAGE 23
LEONGATHA Secondary College enjoyed a
visit from its Japanese sister school last week
as its international friends embarked on their
Eighteen students from Toyama Dai-ichi, Japan travelled
to Leongatha for 10 days to learn about education and cul-
ture in South Gippsland.
Accompanying teacher Kenichiro Ishizaki returned to
the school for the third time and said the program continues
to improve the schools’ bond every year.
“We always look forward to visiting Leongatha and our
visits get better,” he said.
Leongatha Secondary College coordinating teacher Greg
Ellt said students take in turns visiting their sister school,
with Leongatha Secondary College students set to embark
on their next Japanese adventure in August 2017.
“We have been running the program for 26 years now.
Every two years we send off 12 to 15 students. We have 18
guests this year and we had to select from 25 students. We
did not have the capacity to take them all,” he said.
“The students arrived last Wednesday and participated in
a range of classes including cooking, art and science.”
At the completion of their trip, the Toyama students per-
formed small presentations to the Year 10 English class in
their second language.
“They were a bit shaky at first but they did a fantastic
job,” Mr Ellt said.
The Toyama students took time to visit the Healesville
Sanctuary and local beaches.
When asked what they enjoyed most in Australia, all
agreed the native wildlife was a highlight.
“The animals are very wild here. The nature is very dif-
ferent to Japan and it is a bit warmer here,” Nagisa Miz-
“We have really liked Australian food. Fish and chips
are the best.”
Fellow student Nao Hosoi agreed.
“We want to come back here and spend the rest of our
lives here,” she said.
“The people are very kind and it is a great place. The
only thing we do not like is Vegemite. It is too salty.”
Peace out: students from Toyama, Japan enjoyed their time at Leongatha Secondary College, last week.
Japanese show off English skills
LEONGATHA Progress Associa-
tion hopes to gain momentum this
year after a slow end to 2015.
Mary Mackison has taken on the pres-
idency following five years of member-
ship on the Leongatha Progress Associa-
tion. She will join Wendy Holm who will
continue in her role of secretary.
“We have not yet met this year and
we are concerned by the lack of interest
we have received from people. Not many
people want to be involved,” Ms Macki-
“We would like to encourage partici-
pation because we feel we have a number
of issues that need addressing in so far as
ensuring the welfare of Leongatha resi-
One of the most recent concerns is wa-
“Our water supply is so important but
we feel there has not been enough broad
interest from community members to at-
tend these consultations and our meetings
to find out more. More people need to
know this vital information,” Ms Macki-
While the association plans to hold its
first meeting for the year in the near fu-
ture, Ms Mackison is concerned its objec-
tives will not be achieved with dwindling
“Our numbers have declined recently
and we need more people to band togeth-
er to achieve our projects and plans,” she
“We would really like to reinstate a
community newsletter however it is a big
job and we need all the support we can
“At the moment a lack of interest and a
lack of numbers is our greatest concern.”
Progress ladies: from left, president Mary Mackison and secretary Wendy
Holm have big plans for Leongatha’s Progress Association this year.
LEONGATHA Men’s Shed
has dubbed 2015 one of its
most successful years yet.
The club experienced an increase
in membership and completed a
range of interesting and varied proj-
ects within the past 12 months.
President Max Wood said the
group had successful fundraisers, in-
cluding sausage sizzles at IGA, and
selling work to the public.
The new “kindling project”
proved to also be a success with
shed members dismantling pallets
and cutting them into kindling packs
Major concreting work was com-
pleted to make the shed accessible
in all weather, which proved to be a
major advantage for members with
The Cloak Room discussion
group provided a space for men to
discuss personal issues in a support-
ive and confidential environment.
Ken Reid organised regular
weekly activities for shed members
with disabilities which involved
painting and packaging wooden toys
for disadvantaged children.
“The success of our first Market
Day Stall at the Mirboo North Mar-
kets in October allowed ‘shedders’
to showcase and sell a wide range of
‘shed produced’ items to a very ap-
preciative public,” Mr Wood said.
“Leongatha Shed continued
to develop friendly and mutually
worthwhile relationships with local
organisations such as Murray Goul-
burn, Leongatha Fresh Meat and Fish
Supply, Bakers Delight, Community
College Gippsland and Leongatha
IGA. Many of these organisations
donated items to assist the shed in its
fund raising activities for charity.”
The woodwork and storage of the
shed were also designed and organised
to hold new equipment after mem-
bers visited other men’s sheds across
Gippsland to seek design advice.
The ‘shedders’ will continue to
meet on Wednesdays from 1pm until
3.30pm for a cup of tea and a good
chat. The shed will also be open on
Mondays from 1pm.
“The shed prides itself on provid-
ing a friendly and satisfying experi-
ence for any man considering join-
ing a local club. Visitors and new
members are always welcome,” Mr
Shed in tip top shape
Cr Bob Newton
I APPRECIATE the time
people committed to attend a
community budgeting forum
It’s opportunities such as this that
help us meet your needs. Council’s
first foray into community budgeting –
the allocation of $400,000 to each of
Foster, Korumburra, Mirboo North and
Venus Bay, with the projects to be rec-
ommended by community panels – was
discussed at the forum, particularly its
shortcomings and how it could be bet-
ter implemented next financial year.
Twenty-three nominees attended,
giving councillors the opportunity to
hear first-hand about why the nominees
had been interested in participating,
what impediments they saw in attract-
ing more nominees, what capital works
projects they would have supported
and how community budgeting had
been perceived in their communities.
We know our communities want
more say in how council works with
them. We know community budgeting
has been successful around the world.
We now know we rushed the process.
This forum was about us getting
feedback so we can do it better next
time around. Council will receive a
report at its June meeting detailing
how the community budgeting project
could be implemented in 2016-17 for
projects to be undertaken in the 2017-
18 financial year.
Council’s Nyora growth project is
in full swing with a recently well-at-
tended community workshop to gather
input into the Nyora Development
The workshop was an invaluable
conversation starter. It’s important the
local community influences what Nyo-
ra will look like and how it is serviced
in the future. The project is the result
of the sewer being connected to the
town and the increased opportunities
for growth for land owners, residents
Nyora community groups received
a little economic boost at the weekend
with the annual Working Horse and
Tractor Rally. Along with a large dis-
play of vintage and veteran tractors, a
horse compound and display of station-
ary engines, there was cow milking,
hay baling (with stationary presses),
blacksmiths forging steel, heritage tim-
ber skills displays, a whip cracker and
maker, axemen chopping and carving
wood, and plenty of stallholders sell-
ing their wares.
The rally has been running since
1991 and has grown to be one of the
premier rallies of its type. Originally
starting as a one-off display of farm-
ing, its popularity at that first event
was enough to prompt a repeat event
From there the event has moved
location twice and up until the move
to Nyora in 2004, the rally ran every
two years and is now an annual event.
The focus is on community with most
of the proceeds distributed amongst
the many groups that help make the
rally possible every year, including the
CFA at Loch, Lang Lang, Koonwarra
and Kongwak, the Korumburra Rotary
Club and CERT first response team.
Finally, it was an honour to attend
and MC the launch of Far From Home
a book written by local brothers Tony
and Andrew Moon, at Korumburra on
the weekend. This powerful book tells
the story of soldiers who did not make
it home from the war. It immortalises
their memory and is an important part
of our history. The book is beautifully
put together and is a credit to all in-
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