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Donations in Kind Annual Report 2018 – 2019

    It is my pleasure to present my ninth annual report as Chairman for Donations in Kind (DIK) Central Region for the 2018-19 year. This year has been another productive year with completion of most of the projects specifically related to the Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) donation. The RAH project has continued to shine a spotlight on DIK and its operations at club, district, state levels.

    Summary of Activities

    The above components are discussed in detail below, but first, some summary statistics:

    Container projects completed: 11. Comprising 10 loaded at DIK warehouse (5 DIK projects and 5 RAH projects) and 1 RAH project loaded elsewhere.

    Destinations: Philippines, Kurdistan, Egypt, Solomon Is, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Nepal, Myanmar, PNG, Zambia and Sierra Leone.

    Standard containers shipped: 22 (20 foot equivalents)

    Other international projects assisted: 6                           Local bodies assisted: 20

    Donations collected: 124                                                 Donations in progress: 21

    Donations not collected: 34

    Value of donations picked up by Rotarians: $13, 000

    Club/district presentations: 9                                           Joint district working bee (at DIK): 1

    Logged volunteer hours: 3410                                         Total value of volunteering: $113, 000

    In summary, we continue to take steps to achieve our strategic goals. We have continued to reduce stock levels with the scrapping of obsolete, damaged or unserviceable stocks, and having a general cleanup of the warehouse facility. Donations continue to be assessed prior to collection to minimise cost and effort and to focus on goods needed to service requests of needy communities. Financially DIK is in a sound position. Sufficient funds were provided for all container projects. Donations, sale of goods and scrap metal covered operating expenses for the year. More details are contained in the following sections, set out under our strategic outcome headings.

    Effective System of Collecting Goods

    A total of 124 donations were collected during the year, with another 21 yet to be assessed/collected and 34 that were either declined or went to another charity. This equates to 2.4 donations to manage each week or one every third day. Donations varied in size from semi-trailer loads to individual boxes. This generosity of donors does challenge us in coordinating assessments and collecting goods. We have continued to ensure that goods are assessed prior to collection to minimise wasted effort in collection as well as disposal of unusable goods.

    On 23 occasions, we have had donors deliver their donations which greatly helps. Otherwise we have continued to call on Rotarians to assist in collecting donations, saving approximately $13, 000 in collection costs. We thank all those who have assisted in this endeavour. A hire truck/trailer was utilised only on 7 occasions, the car trailer being donated by the hire company.

    I would like to thank the Rotary Club of Largs Bay for their ongoing support in collecting wheelchairs in this regard, repairing the chairs and then delivering them to our warehouse. The time effort and cost of replacement tyres is very substantial and we are most appreciative of their involvement in this over past decades.

    Royal Adelaide Hospital Surplus Goods

    DIK was headhunted by SA Health in 2016 to coordinate allocation of all goods going overseas. The bulk of the work was done in 2017-18 but a few projects carried over into 2018-19. Of the successful 28 RAH projects, 6 were completed in 2018-19, while the last 2 are scheduled to be finalised in first quarter of 2019-20.

    By the end of May 2018, all relevant goods for current and potential future projects had been removed from the hospital. Most of this went into containers direct for shipping but a substantial amount of useful items (e.g. hospital beds) were transported to DIK warehouse for future projects.

    The project is recognised as the largest single Rotary project in South Australia. The project has been recognised at District level as well as many Rotary clubs. It is intended to have a substantial report and publicity of this high profile project in 2019/20 once projects are completed.

    Calvary Wakefield Hospital

    In a similar way, DIK has been approached by Calvary Wakefield Hospital for the potential surplus equipment in its move to the new Wakefield hospital. Initial meetings have been held, with the RAH experience giving Directors there comfort that Rotary’s DIK team can well manage collection and disbursement of goods to needy communities. Formal agreements, deeds etc are in the process of being finalised. The volume of goods in this project is significantly less than the RAH project. With this smaller volume and lack of parking space at the old Wakefield Hospital, it is expected that all goods will be trucked to DIK warehouse for allocation to future projects as appropriate. This is anticipated to be in Jan-Feb 2020.

    Goods are Stored Ready for Shipping

    Major effort continues to reduce excess stock levels at the warehouse facility. Substantial amounts of goods have been sold or scrapped which has reduced the clutter within each building as well as the volume of goods outside. A weekly Council kerbside waste collection system is now in place for regular waste management in lieu of burning permits. The waste transfer station near the DIK facility has been well used again for disposal of e-waste, cardboard, plastic and polystyrene at no cost. The Salisbury Council provides not-for profit groups vouchers for disposal of hard waste which has also been valuable in minimising operational costs. Scrap metal netted $923 in revenue during the year with lower metal prices compared to previous years.

    Damaged skylights continue to expose parts of the Building to water damage. A proposal has been put forward to the landlord to remedy this in exchange for lower rent. The landlord has confirmed that this is accepted but we still await this document to be provided.

    Rationalisation of electronic medical/dental equipment has been possible with the invaluable assistance of medically trained volunteers have also enabled a lot of the medical supplies and equipment to be sorted and stored. The influx of a large volume of goods, particularly remaining RAH goods during in the year has challenged the orderly management of goods. A plan has been prepared to attend to the clutter of goods on the floor and bring the warehouse back to WHS standards in-line with our WHS Plan.

    Promotion and Liaison Protocols

    A total of 11 presentations were made to clubs as guest speaker to club meetings – 7 from District 9500 and 4 from District 9520. The RAH project was featured at a presentation at the District 9520 conference. DIK was represented at the two District conferences (9500 and 9520), where pull-up DIK banners featured. A major Joint District RAWCS Open day was held at the DIK warehouse in August 2018 which was attended by over 100 volunteers (mainly Rotarians). This was an excellent opportunity to showcase DIK operations as well as the other RAWCS programs.

    The RAH decommissioning project was part of World Environment Day event in the Botanic Gardens, adjacent the old RAH. DIK was asked to be a co-presenter along with landlord, SA Renewal and contractor, McMahon in showcasing this environmental project to over 2000 school children registered for the event.

    Effective Shipping System

    Whilst less hectic than previous year, the DIK Committee has been busy managing the 11 projects that have had containers loaded and shipped out as well as coordinating the others yet to be finalised and following up the RAH projects already shipped. One of the previous year’s RAH projects to Kenya is an issue with customs clearance. Delays in the three stage customs clearance has led to a demand for payment of detention charges by the shipping line for lack of return of their container. The Sponsor does not have funds to pay these charges and the shipping line subsequently has not released the container. Issue remains unresolved at the end of June.

    Goods, mainly medical, have also been provided to individuals and organisations to go overseas, largely as carry-on luggage. This has occurred on 14 occasions during the year to a variety of countries.

    We have again supported many other Rotary clubs and other organisations and individuals locally and nationally with the supply of domiciliary and medical equipment, furniture and other items that has assisted needy individuals. Some 26 instances of this aid have occurred this year from DIK.

    Good Governance

    Formal lease documents have been requested to cover the extension of our lease on the premises. In June 2019 the landlord confirmed that arrangements negotiated with DIK were still in order. It was indicated that a lease document was in preparation. We still await this document. Having long term lease agreement in writing will facilitate us being more able to submit a grant application for skylight repairs as well as commit to substantive effort and costs to other site improvements.

    Financially, DIK Central Region is in a very sound position. Financial figures for the operations at DIK provided by RAWCS show operating project line (RAWCS Project 54 2013-14) with an opening balance $25,278 and closing balance $24,647. Turnover being $27,000.

    Our incoming courier costs continue to be minimised with the use of volunteer support from committee members and Rotary clubs in general, and more selective collection of goods. DIK is constantly looking at improving efficiency of operations and reducing costs to improve output of product. Good support from Rotary clubs is key to this financial position as well as physical operations on DIK.

    Costs for waste disposal continues to be minimised through a variety of measures. Whilst burning permits will no longer be issued by Council, a regular weekly kerbside collection is now in place. This, along with free Council vouchers for hard waste disposal, have got our waste costs to effectively zero.

    The Royal Adelaide Hospital project (RAWCS Project 53 2013-14) opening balance was $15,906 with a closing balance of $217. There are still two projects to be finalised and shipped in the 2019-20 year. One was sent in July and the second expected out in September 2019. Although costs for shipping that DIK arranges for each project aims to be cost neutral. The 2.75% RAWCS levy for RAWCS deposits is incorporated into all projects.

    With DIK (Central Region)’s Work Health and Safety Management System in place and implemented there has not been any injury claims or reportable incidents again this Rotary year, even with the demands of the RAH project.

    A significant amount of goods from the RAH were transported from the RAH to the DIK warehouse toward the end of last year to meet RAH donor deadlines and ensure that needy communities did not miss out on the goods remaining. This precipitated a congestion of goods on the floor of the warehouse, which is less than ideal for storage or WHS. An Action Plan to remedy this was prepared implemented during the year. This includes immediate and medium term actions, primarily finalising outstanding RAH projects and allocation of goods to new projects. Much of this congestion has now been removed. A plan of better warehouse storage is being prepared, now that there is more room to manoeuvre in the warehouse.

    Sustainability of Operations

    A log-in process is in place at the warehouse (and at RAH site) facility for volunteers. For 2018-19, the tally of hours of volunteer work at DIK totals 3410 hours. This includes an estimated 371 hours of time in collection of goods from donors by Rotarians and 500 hours Rotary Club of Largs Bay in repairing computers and wheelchairs. 571 hours has been put in by non-Rotarian John Tunbridge in checking and repairing computers and AV equipment. The commitment of these volunteers to this work over so many years is quite extraordinary. The DIK committee input substantial time and effort which is not recognised fully in these attendance sheets.

    The support provided by clubs during working bees is a vital part of keeping our head above water in terms of physical management of goods on-site. Unfortunately, we have not had as many working bees at the warehouse facility from clubs this year compared to previous years. The DIK project is arguably one of the most dynamic programmes of Rotary in the two districts, requiring coordination of 2.4 deliveries per week and outgoing goods occurring every week or two.


    This year has been another productive year in the life of DIK Central, primarily related to the finalising of the RAH project. It has promoted the Rotary brand highlighting the trust that the community has with Rotary. It has also showcased RAWCS and DIK capacity to undertake complex high-volume projects in a timely manner delivering humanitarian aid across the world. Destinations for RAH and DIK projects during the year covered 15 countries, as detailed above.

    Even with the demand on resources and volunteers during the year, all this has been done safely and effectively. The DIK Central Committee and regular volunteers are to be commended on outstanding performance, persistence and dedication. I would also like to thank all other volunteers and supporting Rotary clubs who have assisted us in our DIK operations. We would not have been able to achieve what we have without this physical and financial support.

    We continue to provide valued humanitarian service to a great many needy communities throughout the world and aim to continue this service in the future both internationally and locally. We also provide a valuable environmental service in reducing landfill by utilising otherwise serviceable goods to those less fortunate.

    I look forward to another year at the helm of DIK and our further improvement all of DIK operations and ongoing humanitarian service.

    Dave Cockshell

    Donations in Kind, Central Region

    September 2019