Rotary Bulletin 12-09-2022

Next Meeting – 19 September 22 – Our Guest Speaker will be Naill McCormick of “Eye Care for Africa” who will make a presentation of Eyewear.

Rotary Bulletin 12-09-2022  – Interim President Trish Giddens welcomed members, and a great gathering of wives, partners, and friends to the meeting, including Ross Pinkham (our recent Past District Governor), Ken Haines (Secretary, Stortford Lodge Rotary Club), Wendy, Judy, Kay, Ngaire, Chris, Jenny, Liza, Raeanne, Jane,  and Bronwyn.

GRACE: was given by Ian Ellengold:

REMEMBERANCE:  Interim President Trish invited all members and attendees to stand for a minute’s silence in remembrance of our Queen who recently passed away.


Was given by Rotarian Dale Prebble who quoted the following speech by the President

of a large University in Canada – to graduating students back in 1972:

“This ceremony completes an important phase of our lives, but no one has more pride in your accomplishments than the next group I would like to introduce to you.  If you, our graduates look over to your right and left you will see representatives of the most remarkable people ever to walk this earth – your parents and grandparents.

These are people who, within just five decades, have increased life expectancy by approximately 50%.  They have cut the working day by one-third, but more than doubled output. Because they have given you a healthier world than they found, you no longer have to fear epidemics of flu, typhus, diphtheria, smallpox, and tuberculosis almost unheard of.

Let me remind you that these remarkable people lived through history’s greatest depression when many of them knew what it was to be poor, hungry, and cold. Because of this, they determined that it would not happen to you; that you would have a better life, good food to eat, milk to drink, vitamins to nourish you, a warm home, better schools, and a greater opportunity to succeed.

Because they gave you the best you are the tallest, healthiest, brightest, and probably the best-looking generation to inhabit the land.  Because of their efforts, you will work fewer hours, learn more and have more leisure time, travel to distant places and have more chances to follow your life’s ambition.

These are also the people who fought two of man’s grisliest wars.  They defeated Hitler, and when it was all over had the compassion to spend millions of dollars to help their enemies rebuild their homelands.  They have had their failures.  They have not found alternatives to wars or racial distrust, but they have made more progress by the sweat of their brows than in any previous era – and don’t you forget it!

If your generation can make as much progress in as many areas as these two generations have, you should be able to solve many of this earth’s remaining ills.  It will not be easy, and you will not do it with negative thoughts or by tearing down or belittling.  You can do it by hard work, humility, and faith in mankind.”

So have we done it as well?

SERGEANT’S SESSION: was given by Rotarian Peter Maine, who continues with the thoughts we had following the silence of remembrance we just had.  He asked Rotarians and friends to share any memories they had of meeting or greeting, or merely waving a tiny flag as the Queen passed.  Each response also included contributing to funds to go to one of the Queen’s related charities. $88.00 was raised, including many treasured memories.

PRESENTATION OF CITATION:  Interim President Trish then invited Immediate Past District Governor Ross Pinkham to present a citation to the Club relating to last year’s work by Past President Lynn Hann and Secretary David Smith, who had planned and achieved many of the Club’s goals for the year including a donation to the Rotary Foundation.  The Club achieved 13 of 17 goals, including Rotary Fellowship participation, District Training Participation, Annual Fund Contribution, Service Projects, Updating Website and Social Media, and Media Stories about Club projects.  Rotarian David Smith was invited to receive the Citation and Ross congratulated all members of the Club for their commitment to projects.

John Pollard then introduced Janice Feutz, who was born on the West Coast of the South Island, and moved to Ashburton when she was 8 years old.  As a teenager, she loved her sport, and like many of us, found it much more fun than studying.  Netball and Cricket were her favorites, and she was a member of the first rep Mid Canterbury Women’s Cricket Team and wishes to get in touch with anyone who loves to watch the game.  John noted that the Club’s spirit had lifted in the last few weeks and was quite sure it was these two faces that had made it happen.

GUEST SPEAKER: Interim President Trish introduced the Guest Speaker, Dr. Russell Wills who is a community and general pediatrician, and Medical Director of Quality Improvement and Patient Safety at the Hawkes Bay District Health Board in Hastings.  Russell trained in medicine in Otago in pediatrics in Hampshire and Australia including community pediatrics training, and a Master of Public Health in Brisbane.  He worked for Plunket, the Wellington School of Medicine, and Wellington Hospital 1999-2001, and has been a general and community pediatrician at Hawkes Bay Hospital in Hastings since August 2001, and was New Zealand’s Children’s Commissioner for 5 years until June 2016.  Russell’s main interests are in intersectoral community interventions for children and young people with complex medical, behavioral, and family issues.  He lives in Hawkes Bay with his wife and two adolescent sons.

Rotary Bulletin 12-09-2022

Russell commented that he grew up in Hawkes Bay with a Dad who was a Pharmacist since 1963.  He was aware, given his father’s role and his professional role with community groups and also as a child helping with chopping firewood for Lions, of the devastating history of Maori following the Taranaki Wars.  Having ended up homeless and landless, Maori men had to find work and cope with the entire lack of subsequent self-esteem. Many had to travel for long distances on the least effective modes of transport – motorbikes, or horses.  Maori children were strapped at school for speaking in Maori.  It was a complex part of New Zealand’s history where Maori felt extremely under-respected and in many cases.  The sense of disjointedness within the Maori communities lasted for years.

Generations later, a child in Russell’s care (Chris) whose mother drank in a violent family, abandoned the family, leaving him in the care of his father.  Chris has Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, did not get the support he needed, and as a youngster, joined the gang movement, leading a life of crime, and ended up in prison.  Russell met up with him when he was brought to the Hospital to identify what some of the behavioral issues were, and felt he needed the best opportunities to change his lifestyle and get appropriate support and education.  While involved with him, Russell observed that Chris had been moved to Bridge Pa, given the gangs were trying to attract him back with them.  A caring member of his Whanau personally visited the Gang and declared that they must not continue their involvement with Chris.  Bridge Pa residents also struggled to survive adequately and provide children with behavioral issues with the correct support.  Russell had to connect with Chris by phone as he couldn’t read appointment messages, and staff would pick him up for his appointments.   Russell is currently managing nearly 300 other children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and his job with the Hawkes Bay Health Board was to teach staff to ask questions of patients and keep them up with the programme.

Domestic violence has ensured that children didn’t always get the help they needed.  28 of 100 children need regular attention with domestic violence requiring 40% of Police time in Hawkes Bay.  The loss of land, homes, self-identity, income, and culture hurts badly – speaking Maori being degenerated by Pakeha has also demised the position of the people and the culture.  Chris’ grandfather and many other men worked in Watties – a seasonal job for years, but later those roles were lost and Maori in Hawkes Bay lost their opportunity for work, thousands were on the dole when people were traumatized in that way, it was likely to develop many instances of high depression and mental illness.  Acute, severe illness of children with complex behaviors, many not being seen medically till it was way too late.  Two-thirds of Maori children visiting the medical center are not being seen until it is way too late, with many of them showing symptoms of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and are also in families with high incidences of violence.

It has taken a long time to develop the trust, required to meet the children and their families in Te Reo Maori.  Russell has spent a year doing the training, which is now used daily and he understands why family behaviors evolve and acknowledges the need to understand and admire people who help with empathy and humility.  Maori work with staff, providing services of care to the Marae.  Over time it has become clear that there aren’t solutions within the DHB.  Aftercare properly belongs to the Maori Whanau.  Kopapa Maori means not involving employed personnel and means respect for Maori and Whanau.  Only Komatua can ensure peace within Marae has a wide connection with other Marae and has found that delivering services is very different in 2022, to 22 years ago.  His practice has changed a lot, and he is looking forward to years when he retires and services change.  It is essential that the health services and Maori Whanau remain connected.  There is only so much many can do – there is a need to look at Kanaora and what the community can do, ongoing support of Komatua on the Marae continually.  Service Clubs have a deep service throughout the communities and Russell suggested that Clubs could reflect on the various roles, there are lots of opportunities for organisations at the coal face.  He would be happy if the Havelock North Rotary Club wanted some involvement, eg – mentoring.

Chris is doing ok now – aged 14 and attending a special school – daily, without fail.  His Dad now supports him with positive parenting and avoids unhelpful whanau who try to get Chris involved in unacceptable activities.  Chris is learning to read and write.  Appropriate care and attention system need to provide suitable support for children.  The world can be poor, violent, and cruel and we all have a role to resolve that.

Rotarian Colin Wake thanked Russell for a very thoughtful and provoking talk, identifying for us the entire gamut of what the role actually is in supporting Whanau and the influence of violence – it was a tremendous insight.


The following announcements were made:

  •   Scott advised that he had been in touch with Rae Walker and Viv Blake who are doing well. Scott will be keeping in touch with them.
  • Dale advised that due to poor weather, the Duart painting project has been a slow process.  The painting will continue again on Wednesday and Thursday at 1.30 pm, weather permitting.  Get in touch with Dale if you are able to help.

PARTING THOUGHT from Ian Ellengold:  “Life is what happens when you are busy making the plans”  John Lennon.

CLUB CALENDAR 19 September 26 September 3 October
Event/Speaker Naill Mc Cormick
Eye Care for Africa.
Presentation of Eyewear.
Public Holiday
Queen Elizabeth II
Memorial Day
Tom Little. Youth Parliament
Pukare Cards, Young Enterprise Scheme Project
Cashier Schnell Dufty
Badges, Grace & Parting Thought Pollard Casagranda
2-minute talk Spackman Patmoy
Sergeant Kimber Henderson
Speaker’s Orderly Mayne Wake
Vote of Thanks Holford Prebble

Sue Forde
Bulletin Editor.