Club News

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Visit by our Melanoma PhD Research Student

Last week we heard from PhD Research Student, Sheena Daignault who is being co-sponsored by the Rotary Clubs of Kiama and Gerringong Sunrise to conduct Melanoma Research at the University of Queensland.

Despite the recent exciting successes in melanoma therapy there is still no cure for this devastating disease once the tumour has spread. This project aims at exploring proteins responsible for tumour growth, spread and response to anti-cancer drugs. To make a tumour grow, its cells must divide quickly. But there are also ‘dormant’ cancer cells that do not divide or do so very slowly. The fast dividing cells are more sensitive to drugs than the slow ones.

Sheena said, “Our research is directly relevant as we have developed a laboratory model to test cancer cell drug sensitivity in real-time. Using this model and the knowledge gained from my project I expect to translate our findings from the laboratory bench to bedside treatments and eventually to contribute to improved clinical strategies”.

This important project is made possible through the generous support of our local community at Rotary’s annual Kiama Car Spectacular scheduled for November each year.


Tenille and Aaron Shelley, PP Dave Smark, Craig Higbid, Pippa Spence
Draft editorial: Tenille and Craig will be joining the Melanoma March community event during March to raise awareness & funds for melanoma research

Gerringong Rotary Club member Pauline Thwaites, Sheena and Kiama Rotary Club IPP Marilyn Jarrett

IPP Marilyn presents Sheena with a Certificate of Appreciation for her visit. The Certificate denotes a donation to ROMAC in her name 


Saddleback Mountain Southern Viewing Platform opened on 10th December by Kiama Rotary.

Work is almost complete on the refurbishment of the Saddleback Mountain Southern Viewing Platform and access track.  The Official Opening of the Southern Saddleback Lookout by Gareth Ward MP – Member for Kiama, Councillor Mark Honey – Mayor of Kiama and David Chambers – President Rotary Club of Kiama occurred on Saturday 10 December.

This project celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the opening of the original Saddleback Mountain northern lookout which was a joint venture between Kiama Council and Kiama Rotarians, and dedicated to the memory of past Rotarians.  Funding for the restoration has been provided by the NSW State Government and work have been undertaken by Kiama Rotarians and friends and Kiama Council.

This project is just the latest of many community projects undertaken by Kiama Rotary since its inception in 1952.  Rotarians have been involved with Saddleback Mountain since the mid 1950’s when they assisted Council in clearing and building the first road to the summit. 

Other significant community projects Kiama Rotary has been involved with over the decades include: Construction of Kiama Scout Hall in 1952, Saddleback northern lookout opened in 1966, Saddleback southern lookout opened in 1978, Kiama Stone Wall Markers and Old Saddleback Road stone walls restoration during the 1990s and the opening of Robert East Reserve in 2008.

This project continues 64 years of dedicated service in the local community and many thanks go out to family and friends who have supported us along the way. Long may it continue.

For more information and photos click here