Letter from the President

Welcome to 2019.

This is my first newsletter since being elected President at last year’s Annual General Meeting. I am succeeding Peter Hatfield who has done a great job over the past five years. I hope I can maintain his high standard. Peter will now have more time to publish further books, following on from his recently co-authored The Treatment of Kidney Failure in New Zealand. The book can be downloaded at: https://www.kidneys.co.nz/Health-Professionals/Book-The-Treatment-of-Kidney-Failure-in-New-Zealand/.

Another member of our past committee, Roger Chapman, continues updating his blog, Kitchen Mishaps: Culinary Struggles with the Erratic Cook, at www.kitchenmishaps.com . Roger has had further literary success. Our U3A website carried details of a writing competition in which people over 60 were invited to submit short stories about their life experiences. Roger has had two stories accepted which will be published in two of four books, in the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand His  stories are due to appear in April 2020.

This year we continue our lecture series in the Embassy. Towards the end of 2017 we negotiated the Embassy contract for two years which takes us up to the end of 2019. In a few months we will negotiate renewal of our contract for subsequent years. We have appreciated the friendliness and helpfulness of the Embassy’s Manager, Caleb, and Technician Darryl. Darryl’s help with setting up the audio visuals for each lecture has meant the process has been much easier.

Our lecture programme of 52 lectures (one less than last year) is planned to start on Tuesday, 5 March. Last year we began lectures in February due to the Embassy being unavailable during the French Film Festival. This year, the French Film Festival is not being held at the Embassy and therefore we have been able to schedule lectures with somewhat greater continuity and a return to the usual start in March. Robin Halliday, Rae Julian and Doug Helps, our Lecture Programme Coordinators, have been very busy and successful in inviting and allocating speakers for our lectures. Once again we have interesting and varied topics and the programme promises to match, if not exceed, earlier programmes. We are always pleased to have recommendations of engaging speakers and if you know of such a person please let a member of the committee know.

To comply with the Rules of U3A Wellington, the Committee nominated Doug Helps as Vice President. Doug graciously accepted and will stand in for me during any absences. Thank you Doug.

Glynn Woodbury, Volunteer Coordinator, is busy allocating volunteers to front of house duties. Further detail on Page 2.

Events planning for 2019 is well under way with Aidan Kay advising of a Borneo trip taking place later in the year. The 18 day tour is being arranged by Dr Ghazally who presented a fascinating visual lecture to us last year. Contact Tanisha, Helloworld Travel tanisha.steyn@helloworld.co.nz for bookings. For a full description of the tour with dates and cost see details on pages 11-12 in this newsletter and the U3A website. Aidan‘s report also lists many of the events he is planning for the year.

Each year we award a mature student over 55 years of age, a grant to go towards their studies at Victoria University of Wellington. Paul Dunham, is the successful awardee for this year and will use our grant to contribute towards his PhD study in music. A requirement of the award is a presentation to members which is likely to be scheduled towards the end of the year.

Margaret and Ian Garrett, the Interest Groups’ Coordinators, have invited leaders of the groups to give a short presentation in March. The groups are listed on our website and if you are interested in joining a group or two contact the leader. There is always room for a new interest group. If you would like to lead a new group please contact Margaret and Ian.

Enjoy 2019 U3A.

Barbara Crump