The Presidents' Pen

Penny McGarry                                  
Rotary Club of St, Johns                    
Ph: 027 4935 498 


Lesley Harris
Rotary Club of St. Johns
Ph: 027 4935 408
Good Evening,

Thank you all for braving the 4 degree temperature to join us in our first meeting as Co-Presidents. 

We soon warmed up and with no technical hitches we completed our ‘housekeeping’ and the Directors did their reports.

RYLA week starts on 3 July, there is an Apirana Reserve Working Bee on 17 July.  RLI Training is during July and 31 July is a Food Bank Drive.

Busy times!

We acknowledged our Rotary Volunteers in Volunteer week. Thank you all for your contributions on behalf of the Rotary Club of St Johns!

Our speakers last week were inspirational and they certainly reinforced the dangers of too much screen time, particularly for our grandchildren.

Thanks to Andrew, Julie and Alex for their presentation, very thought provoking.

Yours in Rotary,
Lesley & Penny
Meeting in Review - June 24th 2021
Co-Presidents Lesley and Penny were welcomed to their first meeting as Presidents, by Sergeant Michelle.  A small attendance for the beginning of the new Rotary year with only 22 members and 5 guests present.  It was great to see Mark on the attendance desk - welcome back Mark!
Our Presidents thanked all who attended Change-over which was declared a success by those present.  We were also reminded that last week was "National Volunteer Week" and that more than 200,000 New Zealanders volunteer their time every week.  Rotary volunteers are, of course, included in this number and it was pleasing to hear that of the 47 million volunteer hours generated by Rotary members each year worldwide, last year the Rotary Club of St. Johns contributed 2,500 hours.  Congratulations and thanks to all members for their contributions.
Prior to our guest speakers being introduced, members were also reminded of the meetings and activities that are planned through June and July and these will continue to be promoted in the Bulletin - please read on.
Our guest speakers were then introduced by Miles;  Andrew Bowie, (Donald's son), Julie Cullen & Alex Muntz.  All three are involved in the organisation called "Sensible Screen Use", (SSU),  The evidence is clear that excessive screen use in young children is harmful to their development causing issues down the line like myopia, obesity, social anxiety and even resulting in regressing learning outcomes. 
Scarily New Zealand is leading the way with device adoption in schools which is likely only fuelling the issue.  Our three speakers, IT guru Andrew, Paediatric Physio Julie and Dry Eye Specialist Alex, (Auckland University),  have started Sensible Screen Use to get the message out there and drive a little more awareness around this alarming topic.

Digital technology has the potential to enhance learning, yet international research shows that significant use of screens at school is associated with reduced educational achievement.  High screen use is also linked with negative impacts on children's health, development and well-being.  For more information click on the link above which takes you to the SSU website which reviews the research behind device use in education. It explains why we need moderate, purposeful and evidence-based use of digital technology by schools, and what can be done to influence change.

One of the challenges that SSU have is funding, and they mentioned to us how costly it was to identify and employ affordable software writers and developers to help them grow their website to incorporate the data and research that they have.  There could well be an opportunity here for SSU to work with ONJA and we will immediately introduce the two organisations to each other to explore any opportunities that may exist for both. 

Club Meetings and Other Important Dates
THURSDAY JULY 1st - Dinner Meeting.  Guest Speaker - James Palmer BA, LLB: (Please note that as this is an evening meeting, RSVP's to PP Robyn as soon as possible please).
James is Chief Executive, Community Finance and Christian Savings and he will provide us with an overview of the real stats and state of housing in New Zealand, and a discussion on some of the solutions needed to tackle New Zealand’s greatest social crisis since the Great Depression.

Christian Savings is New Zealand’s only registered charity that is also licensed by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand as a non-bank deposit taker.  Christian Savings manages over $225m, with over $180m in loans to a range of not-for-profits and Community Housing Providers.    

James identified a need to grow impact investing to help meet New Zealand’s significant housing crisis.  He founded and launched Community Finance in 2019.  Community Finance is now New Zealand’s largest open impact investment intermediary established to facilitate investment into affordable housing.  The core focus is on permanent solutions delivered by reputable organisations who are equipped to take care of our most vulnerable New Zealanders. Community Finance has already advanced over $50 million to Community Housing Providers such as The Salvation Army and Community of Refuge Trust.  In 2021, Community Finance launched the Aotearoa Pledge to raise an additional $100m for impact investing through the housing sector.  By April 2021, $71m had already been pledged from a range of fund managers, KiwiSaver providers and community trusts and foundations.

At the Institute of Financial Professionals of New Zealand Gala event in May, James won the coveted Emerging Leader Award for 2021.


THURSDAY JULY 8th - Breakfast Meeting - Guest Speaker Gordon Robertson, Glendowie College:

Gordon was appointed as the seventh Principal of Glendowie College in August 2020 and has been a member of this school community since 1986.  We look forward to hearing his update on the college, his educational philosophy and what goals GDC has for the near future.

Congratulations Allan
A very pleasant surprise for PP Allan Smith and the Rotary Club of St. Johns, when Allan was presented with a Paul Harris Fellow at this years District Conference last weekend.
Well done Allan and well deserved!!
Apirana Reserve Working Bee - 17 July
PP Peter B, Director Science, Technology and Education has planned another working Bee opportunity.  All members should have received an email from Peter, but incase you didn't, herewith a copy;
"Our club has been contributing to weeding, ground preparation, and restoration at Apirana Reserve, Glen Innes. This work is being coordinated by the trio of Ken, Nanda, and Roger who began this major restoration after their long-standing contributions on Motutapu Is. came to a halt.
They have organised a  planting morning at Apirana Reserve, 90 Apirana Ave, for  Sat. 17 July, and they invite your assistance.  Ken advises that on 17 July we'll start at 10.00am and the job is expected to take 2 hours. The ground will have been readied and the holes pre-dug.  So there will be no need for spades or any back breaking digging and we will be looking for quality not quantity.  We will have approx. 650 plants to put in.
Please RSVP, if wanting to participate, by Saturday evening 26 June.  I will then advise Ken of the total numbers from St Johns."
Kev's Candid Camera Album
A new Rotary year, but we still have our esteemed and renowned Photographer on the payroll.  Click on "Read More"  here to see a selection of photos from last weeks meeting!!
Time For A Smile

A salesman goes up to a house and knocks on the front door.
It is opened by a young ten year-old boy who has a lighted cigar in one hand, a glass of whisky in the other and a Penthouse magazine tucked under his arm.

                SALESMAN:  "Hello son. Is your Mum or Dad home ?"

                10 YEAR OLD: "What do you think?"


Rotary Four Way Test
Next Meeting:
Dinner Meeting
Thursday July 1st
6.00pm for 6.30pm
Venue:  Remuera Golf Club
  • The Presidents' Pen
  • Meeting in Review - 24th June 2021 
  • Club Meetings & Other Important Dates
  • Congratulations Allan!
  • Working Bee
  • Kev's Candid Camera Album
  • Time for a Smile
Jul 01, 2021 6:00 PM
New Zealand’s Housing Crisis: An overview of the real stats and state of housing in NZ
Jul 08, 2021
Update on Glendowie College
Jul 15, 2021 7:00 AM
Jul 22, 2021 7:00 AM
Habitat for Humanity Auckland & Housing
Aug 05, 2021 6:00 PM
RYLA 2021
Aug 19, 2021 7:00 AM
Address from our newly appointed District Governor
View entire list
Upcoming Events
Other clubs - open to all
Jun 05, 2021 – Dec 31, 2021
View entire list
Meeting Responsibilities
Thursday 1 July EVENING
Lewisham, John
Figueiredo, Avinash
Gatt, Alex
Speaker Host
McGarry, Penny
Speaker Thanks & Close
Gunn, Liz
Gilmer, Gavin
Thursday 8 July MORNING
Key, Gary
Boyd, Lynette
Mayne, Alan
Speaker Host
Street, Tom
Speaker Thanks & Close
Buchanan, Peter
Harris, Lesley
Thursday 15 July MORNING
Francis, Andy
Scott-Russell, Hugh
Robinson, Beryl
Speaker Host
Robinson, Colin
Speaker Thanks & Close
Bell, Patrick
Mcphee, Angus
Thursday 22 July MORNING
Fergus, Brian
Jolliffe, Cheri
Hartstone, David
Speaker Host
Fabian, Graham
Speaker Thanks & Close
Tedcastle, Isabella
Robinson, Neil
Thursday 29 July MORNING
Roake, Muriel
Belthazar, Jane
Rutherford, Christie
Speaker Host
Lucas, Claire
Speaker Thanks & Close
James, David
Wheadon, Ruth

Club Contacts

Penny Mc Garry 021 702 310 &
Lesley Harris 027 4935 498
Secretary, Treasurer & Apologies: 
Alex Gatt 021 571 722
Presidents' Elect: 
Gary Key021 611 169 & Graham Fabian 021 826 292
Club Services: 
Robyn Ingram  022 0200 171 
Foundation: Gary Key 021 611 169
Community: Hugh Scott Russell 021 0813 7313 & John Lewisham 09 5288908.
Youth: Tom Street 021 685 651
Science & Technology: Peter Buchanan 027 434 1832
Michelle Forman 021 0277 9456, Angus McPhee  09 575 1007 & Cheri Joliffe 021 037 7559
Membership: Beryl Robinson 021 652 802
Bulletin Editor: Pete Walsh 021 747 858
Area Govenor: Ashwini Sadhu
021 305 261,
Our Meetings
We meet Thursday for breakfast at
7:00 am for 7:15 am start,
except for the first Thursday of the month, when we meet in the evening at 6:00 pm for dinner.
Remuera Golf Club
120 Abbotts Way
Auckland 1072
New Zealand 
All Rotarian's are welcome 
including family members.
Others wanting to visit are most welcome - please phone or email:
John Lewisham. Ph: 021 375 080, email;
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