2018 Menzies Community Australia Day Awards

Congratulations to our Functions Manager, Francesca Daniele, who was greatly recognised for her community and fundraising achievements at the 2018 Menzies Community Australia Day Awards.

Francesca has been on the Blush by the Veneto Club committee for four years and in that time has raised over $100,000 for various charities. She is responsible for the planning, coordination and other operational duties at all Blush events and also volunteers at other non-Blush events. She spends many hours each week following up with potential sponsors to gain support for each fundraising cause. Francesca’s drive and energy motivates many other people, bringing out the best in them and this is all because of her community minded focus. Congratulations again to Francesca and to all the Blush committee members who continue to volunteer their time and give back to the community.

50th Anniversary of the Veneto Club

The festive season has well and truly arrived at the Veneto Club! Sunday saw the grounds transform into a huge milestone celebration of 50 years of the Veneto Club, all cosily sheltered from the stormy Melbourne skies. Not to be discouraged by the unpredictable weather, happy faces old and new came together to help make the celebration a very special day.

We are proud to be able to uphold the culture and heritage of the Veneto Club and are honoured by this message from Prime Minister of Australia The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP.













Letter from PM 50th Anniversary Lunch

Staying connected with the Veneto Region in Italia

It’s very important for us as the Veneto Club of Melbourne to maintain and further strengthen the connections & relationships we have with the Regione Veneto. The Regione Veneto is the equivalent of our Victorian Government (in Italy).

Whilst all the committee of the Veneto Club hold this relationship in high regard, Fabio Sandona’ leads this, and represents the Veneto Club in many activities and meetings both locally and abroad. In addition to this, Fabio is also the official representative of the Federazione delle Associazioni Venete del Victoria – one of the only two Australian Federations recognized by the Regione Veneto.

In late July the Regione Veneto sponsored two events to enable Veneti from around the world to meet & collaborate with a view to establishing how best to work with each other across the globe. Each Federation and Association had two Representatives, one for the Consulta and one for the Meeting.

The Consulta is the group that comprises the main representatives from the Veneti nel Mondo – and the Federazione delle Associazioni Venete del Victoria (which the Veneto Club Melbourne is part of) was represented by Fabio Sandona’. The meeting is  the the group that comprises youth represenetives (aged 18-39) and Davide Gottardello was our representative.

The first events were the Consulta and the Meeting dei Veneti nel Mondo – held at the Palazzo Barbaran in Vicenza.

The Regione Veneto was respresented by the Minister responsible for the Veneti nel Mondo communities Manuela Lanzarin. Manuela reinforced that the Regione Veneto is committed to working with and actively engaging with all Veneti nel Mondo. She also stressed the importance of these conventions as being mutually beneficial for both the Regione Veneto and all the Veneti nel Mondo and their local communities back home.

Did you know that there are almost 5 million people of Veneto background all around the world?  Five million people that have migrated in search of a better life and more opportunities.

From the various discussions during these conventions two strong messages were evident:

  • The importance of continuing to support our Veneto’s Associations through these conventions to maintain & foster relationships
  • For the youth – the importance of using social medial tools to connect, communicate, collaborate, and share ideas and details of events.

The second event – the Giornata dei Veneti nel Mondo was celebrated at the piana del Cansiglio in Santa’Osvaldo.  Over two thousand people attended this event which was officiated by the Secretary of Vatican State S.E. Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

Fabio (on behalf of the Veneto Club Melbourne) presented the officials of the Regione Veneto and the Veneti nel Mondo with a temporary honorary membership for the Veneto Club as well as a personalised Bulleen Lions jersey. They were all delighted to receive these gifts from our club.

A delegation from the Regione Veneto will be visiting Melbourne late this year to join us in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Veneto Club.

Fabio and Davide represented our club magnificently, and we are sure to reap the benefits of these strengthened relationships going forward.


Pender’s Grove Primary School visit to the Veneto Club – Celebrating Italian Week

In June 2017, children from Prep to Grade 6 from Pender’s Grove Primary School spent the day learning about the Italian/Veneto culture with a range of activities from soccer, venetian mask making, dancing, eating great Italian food and playing bocce.

The group was lead by their Italian Languages teacher LeeAnn Sartorel, the daughter one of our late foundation members Gianni Giacomin.

LeeAnn enlisted the help of her mum Agnese to assist with a bocce lesson – Agnese is renowned for her bocce skills both at both a state and national level, a talent that Agnese shares with her brother Emilio.

As you can see from the pictures  the students had a fun filled day at the Veneto Club immersing themselves in all things Italian.

If you would like to organise a school visit – contact Karl Hodge on 9850 7111.


Blush High Tea









On Sunday 23rd July, Veneto Club hosted a High Tea in support of Doncare and Joel’s Journey. It was the second 2017 instalment of ‘Blush by the Veneto Club’ and it certainly did not disappoint.

Veneto Club was honoured to have Doreen Stoves, CEO of Doncare, as well as Peter, Tracey and Kane Sardi as guest speakers. The Sardi family who spoke on behalf of Joel’s Journey immersed the audience with their amazing speech about Joel’s experience while guests were truly engaged by Doreen, who shared Doncare’s commitment to helping and supporting the community of Manningham and beyond.

The Ark Clothing Co also organised a magnificent Fashion Show for the event while Ruby Woman displayed their beautiful homeware items. With the indulgent buffet of delicious sweet and savoury afternoon tea that had guests coming back for more, the high tea was a huge success!

Veneto Club is thrilled to have partnered with Doncare and Joel’s Journey and we look forward to our next Blush event – Birra é Salsicce on 27th August 2017.


Joel’s Journey – Set up in August 2014 after a local former Australian Army Rifleman, Joel Sardi, had a fall that left him a quadriplegic. After Joel’s service to the country, we thought the least we could do was aim to raise money to help Joel with ongoing medical costs, equipment costs and rehabilitation services as his accident was not workplace related.

Doncare – is a not for profit organisation which provides support to the most vulnerable and disadvantaged in the City of Manningham and surrounds. Generous community and philanthropic support assists Doncare to provide counselling for families and children in crisis; prevention, support and recovery services for family violence; family support and case management; emergency relief; social support for seniors and financial and material aid.


May 2017 – A month of Re-connections, Recognition & Reflections









May was a month filled with many events that warmed the heart as the Melbourne weather starts to cast its chill upon us.

On Saturday 6th May we saw the return of the “Ven Disco” – an event that just six months ago was a mere idea for Angela Bonato, Nadia Bolzonello and Sonia Gough. The disco was a sell-out. For the majority of the 250 attendees it was a reunion of friends from three decades past speckled with disco songs from our youth. For me the evening was one filled with joyous memories of my youth and reconnecting with people that I haven’t seen for well over 30 years. Some were easily recognised, others not – what we all had in common was the excitement of our paths crossing again, and the fond memories of spending the best part of our youth at the Veneto Club. Thank you to Angela, Nadia & Sonia for your tireless efforts in bringing this night to fruition. Feedback from this event tells us that the Veneto Club should organise the Disco at least twice a year targeting the 40s to late 50s age group – we hear you and the VC Committee will certainly embrace this as well as the other feedback we received.

On Tuesday, 9 May, as part of National Volunteer Week we recognized and celebrated the contributions of our volunteers – and congratulated Mr Giovanni Cattapan on winning our Volunteer of the Year award. You can read more about this here Volunteer Week. Over the last five decades our volunteers have been an integral part of our survival and growth– on behalf of the Operations Team and the VC Committee our immense thanks go to all our volunteers.

And of course May is the month that we celebrate our love for our Mothers; recognise their influence in forming the people we have become and their contribution to society in general. For the Veneto Club mothers have been the staunch support in the background especially during the formative years of the club. There were a range of celebratory events to honour our mothers including the Ladies Auxiliary Mother’s Day Luncheon and our special Mother’s Day lunch and dinner Buffet.

To wind up the month, on Monday 29th May we held another Day Out – starting with a generous lunch in Sala Venezia followed by a bus trip to the Immigration Museum in the city. A gallery that has beautifully documented the migration and settlement of Italians and many other nationalities to Victoria. Especially touching and relevant to our group was the story of Edda Azzola an Italian migrant and textile outworker who arrived in Victoria in 1955. Located in the northern garden of the Immigration Museum was the Tribute Garden where over 7,000 people have memorialized their names as migrants Victorians; a sense of pride overwhelmed me as I scanned the countless Italian names, and a tear to the eye as I revisited where my parents and Zii have their plaques.

The visit ended with searches of the National Archives where some located migration records of family members– reconnecting us to how we have evolved to be here today in Melbourne. The stories of migration and especially the Veneto migration was one of courage and hope and as I reflect on today’s exhibition it’s synonymous with all the dreams and aspirations that our foundation members packed in their hearts as they journeyed to Australia.


Sonya Velo

VC Committee