Luncheon Club patrons were served dessert by an unlikely volunteer this week: Her Excellency Marie Bashir AC, governor of New South Wales.

The governor dined at the centre for people with HIV/AIDS in need this week, and told the 100-strong crowd she was overwhelmed and privileged to have been invited.

One day we will win, the governor said on the struggle against HIV/AIDS. The Luncheon Club is integral to the fight.

The governor praised the charity for providing 800,000 meals and 100,000 food items since it began 11 years ago.

It’s an astounding and loving service, the governor said, and also praised the group’s recent community gardening project for providing a positive effect on our immunity and our power to bounce back.

Despite sheets explaining laws of protocol placed on every table, Luncheon Club convenor Carole Ann King told Sydney Star Observer there was no red carpet, no brass band, and we even had to borrow crockery for the official table.

The governor appeared to embrace the casual atmosphere. When shown the kitchen as part of the tour of the building she insisted on serving dessert to the crowd. Diners seemed uncertain whether to bow before or after the governor dished out the trifle.

The governor also proved popular this week with Premier Bob Carr, who asked Her Excellency to extend her term for a further three years. The governor accepted the extension yesterday, The Daily Telegraph reported.

The Luncheon Club is located at the Gordon Ibbet Community Centre, 77 Kellick Street, Waterloo. Phone 0416 040 074 for details of services available.

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