President Report – August General Meeting 2023

The Mothers’ Day Raffle prize this year came from a $100 voucher which our group had previously been awarded by The Colac Chamber of Commerce.

Worldly Goods were approached to make up a “Pamper Hamper” and kindly donated an extra 20% of value to the voucher.  This was a successful fundraiser, and we appreciated the support from the local businesses.

On 16th May, during National Volunteer week, an information session was held for prospective volunteers followed by an afternoon tea to which past and early members of the group were invited. This was a successful event which saw two new volunteers commence and an expression of interest from others. Another session will take place later this year. Of course, the afternoon tea proved to be an enjoyable social occasion.

The window displays have been a topic of interest during the last couple of months. Family group photographs for Mothers’ Day, and since then, and currently still showing, Dennings’ Lolly Shop in connection with the Historical Society’s display which was cafés in Colac.

It seemed to stir the childhood memories, as quite a few members added their ideas and brought something to contribute, which assisted Liz to create quite a busy and delightful scene. Thank you to all involved and to Merrill for cleverly tying it altogether in the newsletter theme.

We had a visit from Lucy and Fern from the Geelong Heritage Centre, an informal chat with Robyn and Diana from the family history group and Noel from the Historical Society. They were given a tour of the History Centre and the resources, and we explained the way the groups function together. They, in turn, shared their roles and offered to assist us with research queries and locating records as required.

The merger of the Family History Group and Historical Society libraries is still in progress with work being undertaken by Robyn from our group and Helen from the Historical Society.

Our group was also one of sixteen throughout Victoria to be selected by Volunteering Victoria to undertake a volunteering Masterclass. Merrill attended the four, full day sessions in Melbourne followed by some zoom meetings during July and August. She will take on the role of Volunteer Administration whilst Norma remains the Volunteer Coordinator, who prioritises, and allocates work to be undertaken.

A visit to the State Library of Victoria has been organised for 4th October where we will be given a tour of the family history resources. About twenty members have booked so far, from Colac, Warrnambool, Geelong and Melbourne to attend the tour.

In December the Colac & District Family History Group will be featured on the back cover of the issue of “Ancestor”, the Genealogical Society of Victoria (GSV) quarterly journal.

Website research and enquiries through the research@ email continue to be attended to by Jill and in person or telephone enquires at the History Centre by duty volunteers.

The Isaac Hebb photograph has been framed and hung in a prominent position in the family history group section of the History Centre, reminding us of his huge and valuable contribution to the town and district’s history records from the very early years.

Diana McGarvie

President, Colac & District Family History Group Inc.