August eVoice


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Monthly Newsletter from U3A Sunshine Coast

August 2020 Edition

Mara Miller – A life that’s “Not just sun, sand and surf”

When it comes to U3A personalities, our newest Life Member, Mara Miller, now 96 years young, is in the top echelon, having served as a founding member of U3A, a vice president, office volunteer, and notably a lecturer in history and later in creative writing. Born and raised in Fiji, Mara has served U3A Sunshine Coast for many years, and is one of our best known and valued members.
Read Mara’s remarkable story here.

President’s Report – August 2020

When other U3As have found their activities curtailed or stopped, U3A-SC has managed to keep going for the entire term. A very big “thank you” to our volunteer tutors, who have been helping to keep us safe with active Covid-19 prevention plans. We also have new leaders in our office with Jennifer Strike appointed ‘Office Coordinator and Karen Martin as ‘Project Officer”.

Please read the President’s full report here:

U3A-SC Annual Report released

The Annual Report for U3A Sunshine Coast was released at the recent Annual General Meeting. The report highights both the challenges and achievements during 2019/20. A PDF copy of the report may be viewed and downloaded here.

Captain needed for U3A Lectures Caloundra

U3A Lectures Caloundra urgently need a new Captain. These are the duties of the Captain:
• Telephone an already arranged speaker beforehand
• Transport equipment to and from the venue 
• Arrange set up and take down of chairs and tables
• Arrange audio-visual assistance and introduce the guest speaker
• Arrange for afternoon tea & maintain an attendance list

If you can help please contact Lyn Lovell or 0421 853 007

Wanted: Ukulele for a good cause

Does any U3A member have a ukulele that they no longer play and would like to donate it to a good cause? A resident of a local nursing home in his fifties, would value having his own ukulele. He was an accomplished guitarist who developed Parkinson’s Disease at a relatively young age and has been housed in aged care for a number of years. Recently, he was loaned a ukulele that he found much easier to play but the instrument has to be returned to its owner. If anyone reading this article owns, or knows of someone who has a ukulele that they would be willing to donate, please contact Wayne Curran on 0419 669 131 or
The generosity of such a donation would be very much appreciated.

Vacancies in Devil’s Playground discussion group

The Devils’ Playground discussion group has several vacancies just now. They are transitioning from an e-class to real attendance meetings, finally. The Devils love taboo, impolite and radical discussion. Each week they have a set topic, and every person gets to present their ideas. Here are some topics they haven’t got to yet: 

  • Did humans need slavery to get civilised?
  • If selective breeding improves cattle, dogs and corn, what’s wrong with eugenic breeding for humans?
  • What’s our problem with nudity?

Meetings Thursdays at 1.30pm. Enrol on the U3A website.

USC grateful for U3A’s $2000 bursary donation

Russell Ousley, Director of USC’s Development Office has officially thanked U3A-SC for the $2000 donation to the USC Study Support Bursary at USC. “Thanks to you, students with financial need are receiving assistance so they can continue their studies,” Mr Ousley said. “Importantly, you are also enabling bursary recipients to achieve their best, which is critical for their future success and for our community. I am confident that these individuals will forever remember the difference that was made for them and consider how they too can make a difference for someone one day.”

Office volunteer wanted for U3A office

If you are able to volunteer some time once per fortnight to work in our U3A office on the USC campus at Sippy Downs, we would like to hear from you. If you have basic office skills and could devote three hours each fortnight on a Wednesday, Karen Martin would appreciate your working with her answering U3A member enquiries.
For more information please contact: Karen Martin

Annual General Meeting a success
About 40 members attended this year’s AGM at the North Shore Community Centre, postponed from April. Members were pleased to hear about activities, classes and events during the challenges presented during COVID-19 restrictions on gatherings. Photos taken at the AGM may be viewed here.

Activities locally for over-50s
Lively50Plus is a directory of events, classes and activities for over-50s people who want to be active and participate in a range of pursuits that add to their quality of life. Here’s a link to the diretory-style website listing current and future activities.

Bursary Award winners show their appreciation

Our three students who received this years Student Bursary Awards were thankful for the financial assistance that U3A provided them through the bursaries. Caitlyn Hockam attended the Annual General Meeting and spoke eloquently about her studies, her ambitions and what the award meant to her. 

The Golfer’s Dream – a Hole in One

On 3rd September at Maroochy River Golf Club U3A Golf Class Tutor Graham Whyte achieved ‘The Golfers Dream’, a hole in one on the Par 3, 12th Hole. With his 7 wood he landed the ball 3 metres beyond a green side bunker 5 metres from the hole. It released and rolled forward 5 metres into the cup. He and his partners did not realise the ball had gone into the hole.  Graham has been playing golf since 1963 and this was his first ‘Ace’. When asked what he thought about his achievement, Graham was stuck for words. All he could say was, “SURPRISED”. Congratulations Graham. .

Keep those story leads rolling in…
Thank you to those members who sent in story leads for this edition of eVoice. All contributions are appreciated, and please send more material for the September edition.
Email to:

John Armstrong

U3A Sunshine Coast
90 Sippy Downs Drive
Sippy Downs Qld 4556
07 5430 1123