Posted by Pat Heffernan on Jul 01, 2019
Well where did that year go. Richard said to me at the start of my year that it will go fast and he wasn’t wrong.
I have really enjoyed my year as your President, maybe not the first 3 months though, but once I knew what I was doing things were great. It is full on and I was glad I retired to do the job. Dean McMillian told me about 5 years ago not to do the Presidents job while you are still working and that was great advice.
I believe the club has had a good year. Right back in September when our District Governor Marion Johnston visited us and she said we were doing all the right things. Marion wanted Rotary to be more involved with the community and not just a bank. We did that by helping out with more street appeals than ever. Hutt City Women’s Refuge, Wellington Children’s Hospital, Daffodil Day, Foodbank, Te Omanga Hospice, Poppy Day, Lift Flight Trust.
Again we were involved with Naenae College presenting them with iPads and two scholarships. At Rata St School we gave out Duffy books and that’s always an enjoyable experience as the children get really excited. I enjoyed reading a story to a small group.
Joe Tomlinson brought up 40 years with our club in October and was presented with a plaque to mark that significant occasion.
We presented PHF awards to John Terris and Brian Lummis during the year.
Our two main fundraisers, the Christmas Raffle and the Golf Tournament both went well, with the raffle making about $13,000 and we presented Biddy Harford, CEO of Te Omanga Hospice, with a cheque for $16,500.00. With the Hospice moving into new premises this year I know that was very much appreciated.
Chris Bennett was our worthy sponsored candidate to RYLA and came back to the club to give us a very interesting talk.
A group of us helped out at the Weetbix Tryathlon in March and later that month some of us walked up to the Baring Head Lighthouse as there is some restoration work that the club will be helping out with. In April we had a great quiz night and later that month we gave a Pride of Workmanship award to Justine Tupara, CEO of JT Property Wash.
We also had the early departure of our Treasurer Dave Morris in April and we honoured him with an Honorary Membership for his years of service to the club. Tony Cornelius stepped in a couple of months early.
We had a Pink Ribbon breakfast in May and we got a full house. Also that month 12 of us went to the District Conference in Whanganui. The most members from any club in the Hutt Valley.
We rounded off the year a week ago with Heathy in the Hutt and that was very successful with 20 exhibitors.
As you can see we have had a very busy year. My biggest disappointment would have to be that we only attracted one new member. I really thought at the start of the year we could get four or five. In November we had a membership drive. We had Keith Quinn as a guest speaker to attract new members, and a group of us went down to the Saturday morning market at the river bank carpark. We very quickly learnt that those down there were only there to buy their veges and not listen to us.
Attracting new members to Rotary is a world-wide issue but it’s still hard. The one good thing is we have been working on starting up a satellite club. We had our first inaugural meeting two weeks ago and had a great response.  This initaitive is looking very positive.
I would like to thank my Board  for all their help through out the year, you have all been awesome. It has been a privilege and an honour to lead this mighty club for the last year and a great way to spend the first year of my retirement.
At the end of this month we start the second year in Wanaka helping our son build his first house.  But I'm sure you'll see me again!