The Rotary Club of Windsor – Youth Foundation Trust

One man’s dream

The Youth Foundation Trust grew from a discussion between PP Graham Price and PP Ross Miller back in 1984.

Graham was very keen to do something to assist young people in the Hawkesbury and was looking for a way to establish an ongoing source of funds for this purpose. From their discussions, the idea of a Trust grew and developed.

At that time, Graham was the proprietor of Manning’s Mushrooms at McGrath’s Hill and the funds to establish the Trust were raised from the sale of spent mushroom compost, kindly donated by Graham.

For nearly 15 years, members of Windsor Rotary attended Graham’s mushroom farm on Thursday nights and tirelessly emptied his sheds of the spent compost, which was then sold through Miller’s Nursery and also in bulk to landscape supply companies, landscapers, etc.

Part of the funds raised from the compost sales were used to finance the Club’s annual youth projects, whilst the bulk was deposited into a special account to build a fund for when the Trust was established.

From Graham’s initial dream to establishment was 10 years. Part of this lengthy period resulted from the Club wanting a healthy amount to commence the fund, although the time taken to gain all the necessary approvals (including that of Rotary International) and fulfil legal obligations, was much more time consuming than originally anticipated. Former Windsor solicitor and Richmond Rotarian, George Rhodes, gave of his time to create the Trust Deed and the guidelines by which the Trust operates.

Eventually, in the 1994/5 Rotary year, the trust was formally established with the signing of the Trust Deed on 10th May 1995 and an amount of $130,000. The Trust was formally announced at the Club changeover in July, 1995.

The fund continues to grow and currently is around $350,000. The interest derived each year is split, with 66% being used for Grants and the other 34% being retained to grow the principle as a hedge against inflation.

Since the inception of the Trust, more than $220,000 has been given in grants, with 250 young people benefiting from this financial assistance.

The Rotary Club of Windsor Youth Foundation Trust has assisted young people to travel to places such as China, compete in State and National Championships and even the 2000 Olympics. It has helped kindergarten, primary, and high school students and others at Uni. The Trust has also assisted some less fortunate than others to acquire computers, others to develop in public speaking and drama. The Trust has assisted Tennis players, rugby players, swimmers, karate exponents and more.

The present Trustees of the Windsor Rotary Youth Foundation Trust are –

John Chapman (Chairperson) – Windsor Rotary (Past President)

Ross Miller – Windsor Rotary (Past President)

Mike Norton – Windsor Rotary (Past President)

Brian Speechley – Windsor Rotary (Past President)

Clr Christine Paine – Community Representative

The purpose of the Trust is to assist and develop the youth of the Hawkesbury, under 5 categories – cultural, disabled, sports, education or any other purpose approved by the Trustees. Applications close on the 31st August each year, with grantees notified late September. The event for which the grant is awarded must occur before the 31st August in the year following the grant.

Click HERE to download an Application.

Applications for our 2023 grants will be available mid June, 2023