U3A Healesville

University of the Third Age

An update from our President John Pascoe October 20,2020

Dear U3A Member,

I am writing my second letter to bring you up to date with the outcomes of your Committee’s most recent Zoom meeting on October 16.



First, I want to introduce two additions to your Committee

Bob Willis and Ian Evenden, who were invited to join by the Committee. Bob Willis has taken over the important role of managing our website and data base. Ian Evenden has also accepted our invitation to join and brings to the Committee experience in business and project management. I am also delighted that Anne Catchpole has offered to support Gianna Esposito in managing our marketing and public relations. They join myself, Barbara Woods (Vice President), Rebecca Doig (Secretary), Bill Woods (Treasurer), George Doig (Course Coordinator), Gianna Esposito (Marketing and Public Relations) and Wendy Veitch (Newsletter and Membership Officer), all of whom were elected at the AGM.


Members Zoom Melbourne Cup Gathering: 3 November at 2pm

As I wrote last month, the Committee resolved to ensure regular communication with all members as we work through the next few months.

To celebrate the Melbourne Cup, the members zoom ‘get together’ will take place on Tuesday 3 November at 2pm coinciding with the Melbourne Cup. In keeping with the spirit, members are invited to wear an appropriate hat. We may also try to hold a ‘bad hair’ competition for those who have not yet been able to visit their hairdressers.

While we recognise that some members will not have access to zoom (you can download the app) or be familiar with zoom, perhaps – restrictions permitting – they might consider visiting a friend or family member who has some experience with zoom. The essence is to enjoy ourselves, meet the Committee, share ideas, ask questions of the Committee or simply offer suggestions about the coming year.

A link will be sent to your email address on Monday 2 November. All you need do to join the meeting is open the link on your email. Our zoom license permits up to 100 participants. We look forward to seeing you then.


Implications of Premier’s October 16 Announcement.

Following the Premier’s 16 October announcement easing restrictions further, little has changed as far as U3A activities are concerned for the immediate future. While it becomes increasingly hopeful that small outdoor groups should be able gather in the not too distant future, it does not change anything for us in 2020. There is a lot of work to be done before we open to ensure the safety of all members. Yarra Ranges Council will require all community groups/organisations, which obviously includes Healesville U3A, to produce a COVID safety plan before any courses can open. We will also have to comply with social distancing requirements and sanitisation, provide contact tracing sheets and advertise ‘Maximum Visitor’ notices on venues. We will continue to inform you about the way forward as the picture becomes clearer. The Course Coordinator is in the process of gathering data from the various venues used by Healesville U3A regarding what is possible.


Registration Day for 2021 Courses

Registration Day for 2021 courses will still take place in the new year as previously stated. The precise date of Registration Day is yet to be determined and will be based on advice from the State Government, U3A Network Victoria and the Yarra Ranges Council, who control a number of venues. We will keep you informed as soon as we receive advice on how we can proceed. As I wrote in my previous letter, your membership will be rolled over into 2021 so at this stage you need do nothing to retain your membership.


Website and Database Update

In order to make the website more easily accessible and relevant, Bob Willis informed the committee about the possibilities of ‘UMAS for Members’. This can be used on a smart phone, as well as ipads and computers, and is very simple to use displaying large icons for accessing database pages. Currently, approximately thirty U3As across Victoria already use this portal with success. Its ease of use and accessibility will allow members to keep in touch more easily with what is happening across different courses. Click here to view UMAS FOR MEMBERS



A reminder: once we are up and running we will need volunteers to help clean the Court House and maintain the grounds. If you are interested in volunteering to be part of a roster, please contact Rebecca Doig ( Secretary) at healesville.u3a@bigpond.com or 0490 917 975


Your Sincerely,

John Pascoe (President)
On behalf of U3A Healesville Committee