Forever Young at heart - Jason and the Theme Parks
Our guest speaker last week was Jason Todd who runs a local business that provides serious advice to owners and managers of Theme parks around the world!
Jason started work at the old Australia’s Wonderland which was developed in western Sydney during 1980’s, and became the centre of the universe for many teenaged kids who lived west of Parramatta. Jason picked up rubbish, sold tickets, dressed up in costumes – in fact did a million things to provide pocket money and then keep him going as a young adult at university.
He had great experience that allowed him to understand them parks and what made them tick. He had career experiences with an impressive list of parks running individual rides, running parks, before moving into the management area where he created strategic and start-up plans; developed training programmes and then subsequent testing of employees to make sure the employees understood the rides’ characteristics and emergency detail.
The pre-ride and technical checks for any ride are important for the safety of all customers.  Jason discussed the importance of safety and, in answer to a question, offered some comments in relation to the DreamWorld accident that claimed four customers and closed the theme park for a period of time.
His business, AP Attractions International, offers support to theme park owners, operators and builders around the world; they concentrate on getting everything “just right” in a dynamic and ever changing business environment.  How did he get to offer the advice …. through hard work at places like Australia Wonderland, Luna Park Melbourne, the Disney organisation, Johore racetrack plus parks in Singapore, Hong Kong, China.  His life of global travel and fun now operates from his own central location of Buderim …. right here on the sunshine coast.
PNG School Desks
Rotary Club of BOROKO  (in Port Moresby area) reports there are some simple solutions to a major problem for many schools throughout Papua New Guinea.
The Need-Urban Drift into Port Moresby together with a birth rate of over 3.5% has seen the population of Port Moresby increase by over 2% a year. The result of this has been that primary schools have 60 or more children in a class. Many classrooms have insufficient desks in them and in some all the children are sitting on the floor. All schools are expanding and all schools are short of desks.
Rotary Clubs in Australia have been bringing in surplus desks from their local schools to DIK/RARE and very generously paying for the freight of the containers to ship them to PNG. However, shipping costs have and are increasing all the time and because the desks and chairs are ‘free’, ‘smart’ and ‘single’ they are easily movable and disappear off to the children’s and teacher’s homes. Moreover, it is difficult to repair these desks.
The Solution-  Rotary Club of Boroko has been trialling the building of double wooden desks designed by Rotarian Graham Rowe, diagram attached. The plywood from which they are built is grown and manufactured locally in PNG. Using templates provided by Graham the parts for the desk are then cut and parcelled into “kits” for the schools to assemble and thus we hope there is a sense of ownership by the school. Importantly, being double desks with seat attached they are less movable and having helped construct the desks they will also be able to repair them if and when they get broken.
The “Kit” or Materials–To build the desks The Rotary Club of Boroko would provide the schools with the “Kits” of the required materials already cut and ready to assemble who with the help of our Carpenter and Interact Club members would show them how to put them together. A “kit” consists of:
1.  Ten sheets of 18mm ply
2.  Two Desk Patterns
3.  One bag of 1-inch nails
4.  One bottle of Wood Glue
5.  One 4 litre tin of Varnish
6.  Carpenter’s wage
COST OF KIT:     PNGK2000 AUS$800 A “Kit” will make 20 double desks and seat 40 to 60 children
Support Our Desk Project–  Is this a project considered worthwhile for Alexandra Headland Rotary??
September Basic Education
Walk for Mental Health
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One of the many illustrations that were created to recognise the end of a Royal era!

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