Monday, 27 August 2012

Being community-spirited and a Rotarian

When asked to describe himself in four words, community-spirited was first on the list for District Governor John Prendergast of District 9980. He has been involved in community groups since he left school, starting with the Marist Rugby Club and moving into school and church organisations. Even his work as chief executive at the Community Trust of Southland is about community. “It’s who I am and why I work here – it’s a good fit.

This job enables me to work and have that community involvement at the same time. I strongly believe people live in a community, not on a community and it is so important to encourage people to engage in their community.

“Rotary is part of that and in our district one in 275 people is a Rotarian so we are engaged; we are just not good at promoting Rotary.” The second word, but in fact his first priority, is family and his wife Donna and three daughters are right behind him in his Rotary journey. “Rotary is just part of our life, it fits in with home and family.” Oldest daughter Meg will go with him on some of his Dunedin visits as she is at university. “Part of the attraction there might be the meal of course!”

“Everyone in the family really enjoys Rotary when they attend events, but they see me as the Rotarian.”
John likes to be involved in things and engaged is the third word he uses to describe himself. “If I agree to get involved, then I make a conscious decision to be engaged and to enjoy what I am doing. I suppose I am an enthusiast about things, and I do like to try to make a difference,” he said. John joined Rotary 20 years ago after being asked by the then Kingswell High School principal Gay Hughes. I was flattered to be asked, as Rotary had a good reputation and I knew you couldn’t just go along, you had to be invited,” he said.

Rotary is about fun, enjoyment and the opportunities, both outward and internally,

Sunday, 26 August 2012

RDU District Representatives Meet

Each year the District Governor appoints a senior Rotarian to represent Rotary Down Under in their district and these representative gathered together in Auckland last weekend to be updated on all RDU activity by Editor Mark Wallace and discuss new initiatives.

A couple of these ...

Rotarians can now subscribe to a digital-only copy of the magazine (see )
- when digital subscriptions reach or exceed 50% of subscribers from the New Zealand-based districts it will be possible to localise the Cover and feature story (ie. New Zealand and the Pacific) for the digital version being sent to digital subscribers (assuming there is suitable material available).  When it is possible to localise, it is likely additional opportunities beyond localising the feature story will be possible.

Since 2009 there have been 33 editions available of which 13 have featured on the Cover and as feature story New Zealand or Pacific Islands stories.  The September issue of Rotary Down Under magazine features another NZ story (see below).  The opportunity for even more Cover and feature stories exists if submissions can be made with great pictures AND articles as some miss out because a great picture is accompanied by a poorly written story or visa vera. 

Rotary Teams Up with Paper Plus for Cure Kids Red Nose Day

Madison Maka proudly wearing her red nose gives her donation
to Bob Donovan of the Botany East Tamaki Rotary Club watched on by
Botany Town Centre Paper Plus owners Anne and Andrew Gorton.
 Friday the 24th August was Red Nose Day action day for the Cure Kids appeal in Howick and Botany as part of their wider fundraising campaign over the 1st to 24th August.

Cure Kids is one of the community based programmes Paper Plus puts its corporate weight behind. Locally it teams up with the Botany East Tamaki and Howick Rotary Clubs on Red Nose Day to exchange red noses, wrist bands, book marks, packets of jaffas and balloons for a small donation.

On the day they raised over $4500 for the charity.

Paper Plus provides the facilities, red noses and “goodies” and Rotary provides the manpower on the day. Barry Nicholls from Howick Rotary and Karl McInnes from Botany east Tamaki Rotary who were the Rotary organizers said that “it is great opportunity for Rotary to team up with a local business and get in behind a wonderful cause”.

Katie Treneman owner of Howick’s Paper Plus said that “the work that Cure Kids Child Health Research Foundation do is an inspiration for her and the Paper Plus Team and they love providing the facilities and goods to help raise money on the day”. Anne Gorton owner of the Botany Paper Plus mirrored these comments and said that “this is a fabulous way for Paper Plus to interact with the community and help a very worthy cause”.

The Cure Kids fundraising efforts culminated in TV3 airing its Cure Kids comedy based mini telethon that evening and the All Blacks and spectators wearing red noses at the Bledisloe Cup test match on Saturday night.

Women’s Lifestyle Expo spreads the word

Julie Olds of the Rotary Club of Masterton
The Women's Lifestyle Expo, held on 11 and 12 August in Wellington, New Zealand had more than 180 exhibitors featuring everything from jewellery to business products and information.

Twenty-two Rotary members from clubs around the region (Eastern Hutt, Harbour City, Hutt City,  Hutt Valley, Kapiti, Karori, Masterton, Porirua Sundown, Port Nicholson, Tawa and  Wellington) volunteered to man (or is that woman?!) the stand over  the weekend in two hour shifts.

The event was very busy, with a constant stream of visitors. To add interest to the stand, there was a rolling slide-show of photos, demonstrating the fun, social side of membership and an Emergency Response Kit which provided a talking point.

Over two hundred promotional fliers were handed out, and those who were interested in finding out more, or attending a meeting gave their details for follow up. Thirty three contacts were generated, which was a great result. These are being followed up with a phone call or email and a “Rotary 101” evening is planned for those interested.

Our volunteers all enjoyed their time on the stand – and commented how much fun it was how much they appreciated the opportunity to meet members from other clubs in the region.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Rotary Earthquake Fund/Trust Report 1/9/2012

Report from the

This report includes applications considered to 1 August 2012.

• To date $1,831,403.00 available for distribution including $22,378 from interest;
• $1,495,925 distributed;
• 260 applications received;
• 138 applications approved, 14 referred to the  Laugesen Trust, a number referred for matching grants involving other RI Districts and Clubs;
• 20 distributions in excess of $20,000.

The Christchurch Rotary Earthquake Appeal Fund has changed its name to the one given above, as it has now been registered as a Trust.  It is receiving applications and distributing funds to projects and causes which are a direct need from earthquake consequences.  Fundraising is an indirect consequence and therefore projects being identified by Rotary clubs are not always a priority for Trust consideration.

The committee has been meeting every three weeks and more recently every six weeks  to consider applications to this fund.  Many of the requests have been for very worthwhile purposes and the committee members have been touched by the sad situations many people and organisations have found themselves in as a result of the earthquakes and aftershocks.  In addition, there are worthwhile efforts being made to help those in the community who were badly affected, and it is encouraging to see projects designed to rebuild lives and foster resilience.

A previous report from this Trust listed a large number of Rotary clubs, both in New Zealand and overseas, who have contributed to this fund and their generosity has made it possible for the committee to approve a wide range of applications.
Thanks must also go to some of the Christchurch Rotary Clubs who have been very diligent in seeking out organisations affected by the earthquake and encouraging them to apply.  We hope their efforts continue.

A break-down of the successful applications shows that all groups stated in the Terms of Reference have had support.  These groupings and the record of approved applications follow.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

RDU as guest speaker for club meetings

From the Rotary Club of Howick bulletin:

Our speakers tonight needed little introduction as they are heavily
involved in District 9920 committees, and “Rotary Down Under”. (RDU).
Assistant Governor, Colin Robinson, and Past District Governor, Beryl
Robinson, from St. Johns Club, spoke about the numerous benefits that
could be obtained from the information presented each month via RDU.

“We subscribe to RDU, we should support RDU, we should use RDU,
because we own RDU.” Colin spoke of the links to Facebook, the changes to
the publication over the years, and the electronic interface now available to
everyone. Beryl, as New Zealand’s voice to the RDU, asked us to
ensure that we use this medium to get our Rotary Success stories in
front of thousands of readers in this part of the world.

These Rotary successes could be used, or adapted, to meet our own Club plans, and
the opinions of the many contributors could act as a catalyst to broaden
our own views on selected issues. Colin gave an example of an article
in August’s edition when two Australian Clubs had a joint meeting at the
Queensland/Northern Territory borders. His message was basically, to
step outside the traditional protocols that we have always followed!

This was a very interesting and refreshing look at RDU, so instead of just
throwing RDU in the corner, how about going through the magazine and
see if there are some good ideas that could help our Club?
To arrange for a RDU representative to speak to your club about the benefits of RDU to your club and the recent innovations that you can enjopy go to

LOTS happening in the Pacific!

CLICK HERE  for the August issue from Rotary New Zealand World Community Service Ltd.

Included is:

  • Tongan solar power project commences
  • Richmond Rotary project in Aitutaki (maintenance and repairs following Cyclone Pat)
  • Kondiki milk processing plant in Mwaka, Tanzania
  • Savaii Primary School Library Project 2012
  • and more including projects needing support.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Garden Project Grows Membership

Collette Lochore, Miss World NZ 2012,
was inducted as a new member of New Lynn Rotary Club.
The Rotary Club of New Lynn recently inducted their newest and youngest member, 18-year-old Collette Lochore who is Miss World NZ 2012.  After being crowned the winner of this year’s pageant, she then represented New Zealand in the 62nd Miss World Grand Final on August 18 in China.

At a time when Rotary as an organisation is struggling internationally with recruitment and discussion continues as to how clubs can attract younger members, it is interesting to know Collette’s reasons for joining Rotary New Lynn.

Collette’s introduction was thanks to New Lynn Rotarian Desmond & Rose Foulger, who are also the NZ Directors of Miss World.  Collette was attracted to the theme of 2012’s pageant “Beauty with a Purpose”. 

After learning about Rotary as an organisation, Collette found common ground between the aims of Rotary and her own ideals and passion for charitable endeavours.

Collette is passionate about her role as a speech & drama teacher, working with children aged 3-18, and particularly the opportunity to work with disadvantage youngsters, helping them develop confidence and communication skills.  As Miss World NZ she has also taken on a major commitment in fundraising for Variety, the children’s charity.

Collette has attended a few Rotary meetings and also volunteered to assist with the New Lynn Rotary Club’s recent service project, involving the construction of vegetable gardens at New Lynn Primary School.  Her assistance at the working bee in May was just after she had been crowned Miss World NZ 2012.  Collette’s presence and that of her fellow pageant contestants, was not only great PR, but the four beauty queens also demonstrated proficiency with hammers and power tools! 

Collette identified with New Lynn Rotary Club’s aim of supporting and empowering young people in the community, so she made the decision to become a Rotarian.  Collette believes membership of Rotary will assist her as she embarks on her life’s work, and the Rotary Club of New Lynn have been pleased to welcome this new, young and vibrant member.


Rotary Fiji donated 72 beds and mattresses to the Ministry of Health in August, following 108 beds that were donated in January.

Rotary Fiji received the beds from Rotary Australia who received them from the RSL.

Minister for Health Dr Neil Sharma was on hand to thank his fellow Rotarians personally and see first-hand the high quality of the electronic beds. He commented that the patients of our hospitals and health centres will now enjoy a higher standard of care and comfort.
Also present were PDG Warwick Pleass, AG Malini Raghwan, President Barbara Malimali and Raman Dahia from the Rotary Clubs of Suva East, Suva and Suva Peninsula Sunset. 

The beds will be sent to CWM Hospital, Nausori Maternity, Korovou Hospital, Vunidawa Hospital, Labasa Hospital, Nabouwalu Hospital and Raiwaqa Health Centre plus other centres which need them.

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Developing leaders in Rotary, business and life

A special Future Leaders’ Seminar for all Rotarians wanting to develop their leadership skills in Rotary at all levels, business and life is on Monday 15 October 2012 in Invercargill, New Zealand. 

The inaugural Future Leader’s Seminar was an outstanding success last year in Brisbane, so that success has been built upon to develop a new programme that focuses on the five key attributes of leadership for this year’s New Zealand event.
The topics covered include the ability to develop a vision that aligns with Rotary’s beliefs and values, and to communicate this in a way that enables others to buy into it.  Then focus passion and commitment using a high level of energy, directing positive action maintained over time, bringing others along with them. 

The Future Leaders’ Seminar will inspire a hunger for leadership generally, and an excitement for Rotary while motivating participants to become leaders in their clubs and districts.  It will also help them to build their networks and volunteer their skills to improve communities. 
The day includes a mix of plenaries with quality speakers from a cross section of business experience and leadership backgrounds, supported by discussion breakout sessions to further develop concepts presented in the plenaries.

Rotarians attending the Future Leaders’ Seminar will also have the rare opportunity to experience the internationality of Rotary, while meeting and socialising from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 October with senior Rotary leaders at Rotary Zone 7b Institute - an event usually restricted to current, past and incoming District Governors and their partners from around the world.

In addition, there are other value-added events, including a Future Vision Seminar immediately following Institute. 

While some districts and clubs may choose to support their current and future leaders to attend the seminar, any Rotarian who has not previously attended a Future Leader’s Seminar can register themselves. 

All Rotarians are encouraged to register as soon as possible.  Full information on these events is at and 


Future Leaders’ Seminar Chair PDG Beryl Robinson / 021 652 802

Rotary Zone 7b Institute 2012 Chair PDG Trish Boyle / 027 333 1339

We look forward to you joining us in Invercargill! 

Christchurch CBD recovery plan

CLICK HERE  to view the recently released central Christchurch recovery plan.

As the plan's summary says:  "The Canterbury earthquakes provided an unprecedented opportunity to rethink, revitalise and renew central Christchurch.  We can build the area back up to what it was before - increasing its social and cultural value to  greater Christchurch, Canterbury and the rerst of New Zealand."

Thanks to Assistant Rotary Coordinator Ross Skinner for providing this.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Rotary Leadership Institute - new curriculum format

There are three clear foci under the new curriculum:
Part 1 focuses on the Rotarian
Part 2 focuses on the Club
Part 3 focuses on the Rotary journey

For more information go to

All New Zealand-based districts run RLI courses.  These are open to all Rotarians though their club - the club pays for the Rotarian.

Rotary Leadership Institute is a Rotarian development forum.  The three days are taken in sequence and course dates are run two or three times as year in most districts.