Rotary Bulletin 04-Oct-2021

Rotary Bulletin 04-Oct-2021 Meeting

Next Meeting Monday 11th October 2021. The guest speaker will be Lucy Fergus, and Partners have been invited to the event.

Guests at the meeting of 4 October were welcomed to the meeting by President Lynn, including our Guest Speaker Belinda van der Monde, of the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme, Joanna Smith, a former patient, and Wendy Spackman.

GRACE– was given by Brian Lavelle: “There is no more sincere love than the love of food.”

TWO MINUTE TALK was given by Ben Massey who advised that when standing to talk like this, one needed to stand by a water cooler or stand with a coffee in one’s hand, particularly if you wish to discuss sex or religion, but not mahjong, however, his topic tonight did not require a water cooler or a coffee in his hand, as he wished to talk about Real Estate in Havelock North which is going through a media crisis – properties have gone from $823,000 to $1.5m. There were 13 sales last year, and this year so far, there have been 31 sales. The situation is similar in Hastings. We should all feel good – that was the end of his water cooler chat!


SERGEANT: Charlie Fergus ran a successful session, raising $91.80

INTERNATIONAL PRESIDENT’S CITATION Former District Governor Grant Spackman advised the Club that he had recently received a citation from the 7th International Rotary President to be awarded to the Havelock North Rotary Club. He invited Trish Giddens, the immediate past President of the Havelock North Club who in her year of Presidency achieved the goal of 16 successfully completed projects, making the Club eligible to receive the Citation. Grant congratulated Trish, noting her success was during his year as District Governor. the Citation was sent and signed by the International President. Trish extended her thanks to members for their commitment, social interaction, and commitments to projects.

GUEST SPEAKER – Belinda van der Monde was introduced by Paul McCardle who advised the Club that Belinda would be speaking of her role with the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme (SCIP).

Belinda advised that the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme covers 75% of the New Zealand area and referred to a comment by Helen Keller:

‘Blindness hides things from us, but deafness cuts us from our friends.”

SCIP can now celebrate success stories of implant procedures on young children. Their eldest patient is 90 years old and the youngest 3 months, now that the organisation is working with people of all ages, it is sad to see how deafness curtails life, however as the implant device has evolved, which can be placed under the skin against the skull, so now the brain is stimulated by hearing nerves. Contracts have increased this year from 20 to 60 patients paid by the Ministry of Health, including counselling, surgery, activation and rehabilitation is the long process carried out to obtain a good hearing and the patient’s restoration to a healthy life. It is important for deaf children between the ages of 6-9 months to receive the implant, given they need to be checked each year, thus ensuring their hearing and learning skills are in place before they start school. The cost of an implant is $80,000 per person – a lot more for a child, but sometimes less for adults. SCIP patients for life – receiving the support needed. The organisation has a Loud Shirt Day each year as a fundraiser, the next event occurring on Friday 29th October. It would be great if the Club could take it on as a support to SCIP. It is well supported by the Ministry of Health, but there is still a need for friends to assist elders who are facing a long waiting list, and there is a need for funds for more responsive work. It is frustrating to see people who are going deaf and finally slip down the dementia path or other elder illness – surgery cannot happen soon enough. SCIP is campaigning for Gifts in Wills which will hopefully support the work which provides hearing to people.

Belinda then introduced Joanna Smith from Hastings to talk about her journey with deafness.

Joanna advised that she now works for the Hawkes Bay Hospital and is married with 2 children. She thought she may have had deafness symptoms starting when she was about 24 years of age and went to an audiologist who found mild hearing loss, but over 10 years the deafness got worse, both ears having the same progression. Having children seemed to have created the slip in her hearing. After her 2nd child was born, she visited the audiologist again who entered her into the waiting list by contacting the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme. Joanna was twice declined for surgery but later when the government increased the funding, the waiting time decreased, but Joanna knew her hearing was going to get really bad but managed to hold her job despite the deafness, and later in her 30th year, implant surgery was available for her. she finally went for her operation in November, having sorted out family needs and, going to Lower Hutt for the surgery, which was followed by the programme for rehabilitation in the first year. But after the operation, it was quite a hurdle getting back into family and working life. It was a weird sound when she first heard things again – like static on a radio station but the SCIP procedure helped make the adjustments to all sounds she had forgotten about, but after her year of rehabilitation, relearning she can now hear again and recognise noises, speech etc.

It was important to learn all sounds and consonants, to build blocks for active involvement in life. The first 6 to 8 months as the brain has to relearn is the most difficult skill prior to hearing loss. Once Joanna had realised what she had learnt in the year, she contacted the hearing association, to learn how to rehear all words – like physiotherapy for the brain. Her goal was to retain her job, get upskilled and increase her qualifications, and improve her relationships with her family, problems that evolved with the lack of hearing. All this focus has now achieved a good quality of life.

Dave Norrie thanked both Belinda and Joanna on behalf of the Club for their interesting talks, sharing so much of each of their journeys.


Scott Henderson gave an update on former Rotarians:

  • Malcolm and Rae Walker – now in Unit 72 at Mary Doyle, Malcolm is still in hospital
  • Bruce and Jill Downer – also in Mary Doyle
  • Jim Newbigin seems to be in a stable condition.
  • Dorothy Dallimore seems fine now


Ian Holford spoke of an event being organised by the Stortford Lodge Rotary Club. On Sunday 16th October from 6.30 pm there will be a Fund Raising Dinner for the Life Education Hawke Bay. The venue is the Havelock North Community Centre and the Guest Speaker will be Greg Murphy of Aussie Supercar fame. A two-course buffet meal plus wine on the table is included in the ticket price of $70.00 per head. A cash bar will operate and the maximum of people per table will be 8. Joining the event will be 38 Aviation Fellowship Rotarians and partners from through NZ who are visiting Hawkes Bay over that weekend. As the numbers attending are restricted due to Covid, and early confirmation to Brian Kelsey is requested in order to secure your booking (Mobile: 0274 428644).

Unfortunately this event is now cancelled due to Covid


Charlie Fergus has arranged for Rotarians to assist in the planting of new gardens where a new Camping and Motorhome Park is to be established at 8 St Andrews Road. Planting will begin in 3 weeks and he will be looking for Rotarians to help. The Club will be charging $24 per labour hour as a fundraising project. Charlie will be looking for support among members to complete the project.

Christmas in the Park – 4th Dec – Requirements as per last year. It will be at Anderson Park this year. David Trim will be contacting the Club shortly.

PARTING THOUGHT: from Brian Lavelle: “Many people die of thirst, but the Irish people are born with one!”

DUTIES: Please note these arrangements: If you are rostered on for duty but find you are unavailable it is your responsibility to arrange a replacement for yourself. Once this is done, email Stephen Randal at stephen.randalnz@gmail.com and advise him of the change.

11th October 18th October 25th October
Event/Speaker Lucy Fergus Louise Ward Labour Day
Cashier Schnell Duncan
Badges, Grace & Parting Thought Graham Monachino
2-minute talk Pollard Dufty
Sergeant Spackman Prebble
Speaker’s Orderly Townsend Blowes
Vote of Thanks Riley Wake

Sue Forde
Bulletin Editor.

Editors comment: Amazing to learn of the busyness of the Southern Cochlear Implant Programme. Belinda is very focused on supporting the organisation to obtain the best outcome for their clients. Also fascinating to hear of Joanna’s experience as a patient and recipient of an implant and the regular support she received following her operation.

The opinions expressed in this Bulletin are not necessarily those of the President or Directors or of members of the Rotary Club of Havelock North Inc.