About Our Club

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Chartered in January 1987, Surfers Sunrise Rotary was the first ‘Breakfast Club’ on the Gold Coast. Our club participates in the traditional Rotary programs of Vocational, Community, Youth and International Service. We are emphatic in supporting local youth, via several Rotary-developed youth programs. These camps are targeted at teenagers who transition to adulthood (RYPEN), RYTS, the Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) for 18 - 29 year olds, as well as International Youth Exchange students. We support qualifying candidates for the National Youth Science Forum, and we sponsor the annual ‘Lutzy Award’, in the form of a surf ski for an emerging teenage leadership personality in the Surfers Paradise Surf Life Saving Club.

But what sets our club apart is our Wheelchair Trust, a registered Charity and its Project Shed. Similar to a Men’s Shed, our volunteers work on two major programs:
  • Repurposing discarded bicycles to make low-cost “Rough Terrain” wheelchairs, destined for developing countries throughout the world, particularly in the Pacific, South-East Asia, Sri Lanka and many African countries. For just AU$100, we make a wheelchair suitable for unpaved, often muddy territory. By June 2023, almost 11,000 (yes, eleven thousand) had been despatched, giving people, mostly children, the gift of mobility.
  • Building schools and community buildings for underprivileged communities. The major projects were a school for Phuket, Thailand (after the tsunami of December 2004), two schools for Samoa (tsunami of 2009), a ‘House of Hope’, together with a school for abandoned and abused children in Apia (Samoa) in 2014 and 2018.
  • The current project, ready to be delivered in August 2023, is an X-Ray unit for Mauna Health Centre on the island of Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu.
We look forward to meeting you.
Doug Lipp
President 2023-24