banner
Contact us
Join Our Club
Visit us on Facebook
Follow us on LinkedIn
Follow us on Twitter
Club Information
You are welcome
We meet Mondays at 12:15 PM
Stamford Plaza
22 Albert St.
Auckland,  1010
New Zealand
VenueMap Venue Map
Executives & Directors
President
 
Secretary
 
Treasurer
 
President Elect
 
Immediate Past President
 
Director - Membership
 
Director - Youth
 
Director - Speakers
 
Hon. Auditor
 
Director - International
 
Director - Events
 
Director - Communications & IT
 
Director - Mana Tangata
 
Director - World Press Exhibition
 
Director - Micro Vaccination Project
 
Director - Emergency Response Kits
 
President's Message
Craig Brown
member photo
Kia ora Members

Today week we will be hearing from the Prime Minister the cabinets decision on moving to Level-2. It will be a big relief to many businesses when we can finally have a date that we can know about when we can get shops and restaurants back open and have business open back up.  Add to that the government Budget announcements that we will receive on Thursday, and we have a pretty momentus week ahead.
 
We are Zoom meeting again today and will be hearing from Alan McDonald, from EMA.   Alan is the Head of Advocacy and Strategy for the EMA.  Many of you will have been receiving the regular posts from EMA on how to run business during the Lock-downs.  It is a great opportunity as we prepare to go back to Level 2 to talk with Alan.
 
Here is the Zoom link to today’s meeting,  we will open up the Zoom call at 12:15 for a 12:30 start:
 
Join Zoom Meeting:
 
Password: 556417
 
 
Hei kona mai
 
Craig Brown
Stories
5 Minute Update from Stewart Germann
I left on 6 February for Orlando via Houston to attend the American International Franchise Convention at the huge Marriott World Hotel.  I always arrive a day early so what did I do?  I went to Universal Studios and saw Harry Potter World – simply amazing.  Within the park you took the Hogwarts Express and passed through the forest with Hagrid waving to you.  I did all of the rides as I am really “a big kid”.
 
The conference started the next day with 4,000 attendees – I spoke on ‘Franchising in the Asia Pacific’ and covered 15 countries including NZ.  We are the most franchised country in the world per capita with 631 systems pre COVID-19 – who knows what will happen now.  I had completed the Certified Franchise Executive (CFE) course online, which is like a degree in franchising, so I attended the big graduation ceremony – the first person in NZ to graduate with CFE, so it was very special.  I caught up with many colleagues since I have been attending these conventions for over 20 years.  There were many excellent educational sessions and lots of socialising.
 
The day after the convention I covered the four Disneyworld Parks in one day and walked 28,000 steps.  The highlight was Star Wars and I took the Millennium Falcon ride which was unforgettable.  The queues were long but being on my own I could often take the single person section and accelerate past hundreds of people.
 
On the way back I stopped at Houston for two nights and spent the whole day at NASA Mission Control.  The tour and what you saw was “out of this world” and the highlight was seeing the Saturn V rocket up close with 5 huge exhaust outlets which propel the rocket from the launch pad and then that section drops off in orbit.
 
Unfortunately, I spent our 39th wedding anniversary on Valentine’s Day coming home so I missed it;  but Janice received 12 long red roses on the day and was very happy.  Next year will be our Ruby anniversary and she has already told me that  “it will be expensive”.
 
Stewart Germann
Update from Monika Levinson in Germany
The following article is from a former RCA member Monika Levinson, regarding her experiences of the impact of Covid-19 in Germany:
 
When I was first asked to contribute my Covid-19 experience, I thought it is probably pretty much the same for you as it is for me. On second thoughts however, even though it might look similar on the outside, the actual experience tends to be a highly individual one.  Germany established its own form of shelter-in-place in response to the overwhelming development of Covid-19 on March 16, 2020. While it started rather gently, the restrictions picked up speed by the end of the first week and for the past three weeks are as follows (since 23 March 23 and until at least 19 April):
 
  • Public gatherings of more than two people banned, with exceptions for families and those living together.
  • General contact with others should be reduced to a minimum.
  • A 1.5-meter (4.9 feet) distance should be kept at all times when in public.
  • Gastronomy businesses must close. Businesses offering food delivery and collection will be allowed to remain open.
  • Service providers such as hair-dressers, cosmetic, massage and tattoo studios where a 2-meter distance between people is not possible must also close.
  • Businesses and centres offering medical treatments may remain open.
  • Police and other law enforcement agencies will enforce any infractions of the new rules
  • Hygiene regulations must be implemented for staff in the workplace, or for visitors
  • Commuting to work, helping others and exercising alone outside will still be permissible, as long as the activities are carried out in abidance with the guidelines.
 
Since I am self-employed, I can keep operating from my home office, but like for so many of my colleagues, my leadership-development business is heavily impacted.  All new project negotiations are on hold and classroom-type trainings simply impossible.  The coaching work I can do virtually and didn’t take much transition.  I had already done that for years, so that part has been easy.
 
The Rotary meetings in my new Club here in Bavaria have been suspended since 10 March.  In the spirit of Rotary, I offered to be a volunteer for different neighbourly-help or other organisations to support people around emotional issues or even leadership challenges in dealing with Covid-19.  The feedback I mostly received was that there was good coverage around those needs.  I was asked, though, if I could help with errands or grocery shopping for people who are sick in my part of Munich.  So, now I sometimes go shopping for a woman nearby, who has been quite unwell, but not hospitalised, for the past two weeks. It is nice to be doing at least a little good here and there when so many people are out in the trenches, working so hard every day to keep us medically safe, fed, or other operations running.
 
This has also been the first week that I have voluntarily worn a mask.  It took some getting used to, but my sense is that it will become mandatory here rather soon, anyway, and I like the idea that I could infect fewer people that way, just in case I was infected.  I did notice, though, that bicycling through Munich with a red mask (sewed by a very kind neighbour who had put up a note in the staircase of my building offering to do so!) gives you a lot of looks.  Yet, with a bit of luck, I might be able to inspire some people to do the same.  All in all, it seems I have adjusted to the ‘new normal.’
 
Probably hardest for me is that I am not allowed to visit my 89 year-old Mum.  Since we do not live together, we are not allowed to meet up and, of course, there would always be the lingering fear that I could be a vector. While even at her age, she has always remained physically strong and has endured much greater suffering during WW II, my sister and I understandably do not want to run the risk of getting her sick now.  The workaround, like for most families, is that we text, video chat or talk over the phone pretty much every day and my Mum is once again proving how strong she is.
 
Honestly, I do envy New Zealand for its “bubbles,” since living alone can be quite trying during times like these. While I am not someone who is easily prone to feeling lonely, I have surely had my moments, especially during week 1 and 2.  I could actually tell that I was going a bit through the common grief cycle of ‘denial’, ‘bargaining’, ‘sadness’ and finally ‘acceptance.’  There has been no ‘anger’ yet.  Hope it is not coming!   It would be really lovely to have someone with me on a daily basis with whom I could share this experience close-by … and I am dying for a hug.  That first embrace after the rules will be loosened will be a very festive moment for me, I suspect.  Luckily, I get to utilise all the wonderful technical tools that allow me to keep strong ties and an amazing virtual support network between my friends, extended family, and colleagues in New Zealand, the US and Europe.
 
While I wish Germany had also adopted Jacinda’s “bubble” concept, I can see that my current home and country of origin does a lot of things right as well.  I am impressed with the low death rate we have and the discipline with which we are doing what seems to be the right thing based on the data we currently have.  There is, of course, the fiercely libertarian in me who keeps being amazed at how much the vast majority of us has been willing to give up a significant number of our human rights and to abide by the ‘new rules’ without question.  I like to think that it is more than a reflection of the “German personality” that - as we all know - has also contributed to a crushing period in the history of our nation.
 
What I am understanding more and more is that it has a lot to do with the political structure in Germany and the - in this case - powerful interplay between states-level independence and competence and federal authority and coordination efforts.  Among other things, it allowed for quickly implemented and very rigorous testing and research undertakings.  And once again, there has been our ever calm and non-pretentious Chancellor Angela Merkel.  I will miss her after the next elections and almost wonder, if Germany might “ask” her to stay on for another term.  Once again, she has proven that it does still pay off to be authentic and human in a world where lying, hiding evidence or using alternative facts seem to have become the norm even in democracies.  It worries me deeply what we hear from and about country leaders dealing with Covid-19 in places like Hungary, Turkey, Russia, China and sadly even my other home country, the US.  I am very grateful we have Angela.  Now, we just need to sort out the euro bonds or another effective tool in order to show more financial solidarity with countries who have been so tremendously hard hit like Italy or Spain.
 
That’s a bit of my experience in Germany during these unusual times and I wish my dear Rotarian friends in New Zealand all the best – happy Easter and stay healthy!
 
Monika
 
Club History – The Sunshine Fund
The following article was published in our Club’s 25th Anniversary publication regarding the history of our Club’s Sunshine fundraising programme:
 
Our Sunshine Fund was started by ‘Blow’ with the main idea of bringing sunshine into the lives of children.  Our members have been so generous that through the years, it has been our privilege to assist a great many worthy organisations which are doing such splendid charitable work in the City.  The editor is certain that his fellow-members would not consider it fitting to list the various associations we are helping regularly or indicate the extent of our giving.
 
The Sunshine Fund has three sources of revenue:
  • The Sergeant-at-Arms collects from members weekly with the Sunshine Box
  • Each member donates £1 to the Sunshine Box on his birthday
  • Fines at Club Meetings
In 1936 one of our older members decided that in future, for every birthday he had celebrated he would place 1/- in the Sunshine Box instead of the usual £1.  This idea was followed by other older members, and this team of fellows gradually because known as ‘THE FIRST FIFTEEN.’  At the present time there are 26 members in the Team and their generosity is very greatly appreciated.
 
The Sunshine Committee each year investigates all requests for the granting of donations from the Club Committees and from outside organisations.  Its recommendations are placed before the directors, who authorise all payments from the Fund.  Special grants made from the Sunshine Fund have been mentioned when dealing with various Club activities.  There have also been some projects carried out by the Sunshine Committee itself.
 
In 1932 the Sunshine Committee took a very keen interest in the splendid work of Sister Esther amongst the poor and needy families of our City.  Through this fine social worker, we made available monthly supplies of food for about sixty deserving families.  Members of the Committee visited these poor families and in many other ways gave them much needed help.  This work was continued each year until the Government instituted its Social Security benefits.  The last food parcels were distributed in 1939.
 
The Sunshine Committee carried out a Blanket Drive in 1936 and members personally distributed 116 blankets to needy families on the recommendation of permanent social workers.
 
For many years Rotary has supported the devoted Christian service of the Rev. Harry Johnson in his Freeman’s Bay Undenominational Mission and as Chaplain to the Children’s Court.  In addition to paying part of the salary of a fully qualified Nursing Sister in his clinic for the poor, we provide Mr. Johnson with a free tramway pass each year.
 
In June 1937, a substantial donation was made from the Fund towards the cost of a ‘Talkie’ Outfit for the Leper Island on Makogai.
Weekly Quiz – Viruses
Viruses are not really alive as they do not have cells, can’t turn food into energy and without a host they are just an inert pack of chemicals.  But neither are they dead – as they have genes, can reproduce and evolve through natural selection.  They are basically parasites which require a host to survive.  The following quiz includes some interesting facts about viruses:
  1. What was the first human virus to be discovered?
  1. Influenza
  2. Polio
  3. Yellow Fever
 
  1. Viruses make up the single largest component in our oceans, how many particles per millilitre of seawater?
  1. 100,000,000 particles
  2. 1,000,000 particles
  3. 100,000 particles
 
  1. Virus genomes can exist in how many different sequences.  How many HIV-1 genome sequences are there (for example there are 1011 stars in the milky way galaxy) :
  1. 10 120
  2. 10 4020
  3. 10 6020
 
  1. In what year were we able to first see the structure of a virus?
  1. 1921
  2. 1931
  3. 1941
 
  1. When we have a cold and cough, how fast can the cold virus travel?
  1. 320 km/hour and up to 900 metres
  2. 220 km/hour and up to 700 metres
  3. 110 km/hour and up to 500 metres
 
Answers:
  1. C - Yellow Fever (discovered by Walter Reed in 1901)
  2. B - 1,000,000 particles per ml of seawater
  3. C - 10 6020
  4. D - 1931 (due to the invention of the Electron Microscope)
  5. A - 320 km/hour and up to 900 metres
 
Email office@aucklandrotary.org.nz