Don’t let them drown

April 20, 2019

Ashburton District Council, Water Safety New Zealand irrigation companies, MHV Water, Barrhill Chertsey Irrigation, and Ashburton Lyndhurst Irrigation, are pushing the importance of adult supervision around water.

. . . In the last 10 years, there have been 58 preventable toddler drownings in New Zealand. As a vibrant farming community, the Ashburton District has many water races, irrigation ponds, streams and rivers, most of which are not fenced or restricted, and many are often on private properties. These waterways can pose a deadly threat to unattended children,” Ashburton District Council Chief Executive, Hamish Riach explained.

“It is not realistic to expect every waterway in rural areas to be fenced. With so many potential drowning hazards around, it is vital that everyone is keeping a vigilant eye on their young ones at all times. The Council is proud to be working in partnership with local irrigation companies and Water Safety NZ to help reinforce this crucial message.” . . 

One of our staff rang a few years ago to say his pre-school daughter was missing.

The house was fenced and gated but if she had managed to get past those barriers there were troughs and an effluent pond nearby which could have claimed her life.

Eight of us began searching and were on the verge of calling emergency services when the child’s sister found her, curled up in the bottom of her (the sister’s) bed.

That story had a happy ending, too many do not.

 


Separation saved women

March 25, 2019

The roll call of the 50 victims of the Christchurch mosque terror attacks show 46 men and four women.

 

The Muslim requirement for women to worship in a separate space from men cost the lives of more men and fewer women.

That isn’t an argument in  favour of discrimination or of women’s dependence.

The deaths of husbands has left some women desperately wondering how they’ll manage:

Widows of the mosque shooting victims are struggling in the wake of the attack. Some of the women needing support can’t drive and don’t hold jobs.

Shakti, a group helping women, has identified 13 families so far where women now facing life as sole providers. Some of them are very young, with young children and new to the country.

Shakti councillor Shila Nair says some women don’t hold a current license, making ordinary tasks more difficult.

“That kind of increases their difficulty by quantum leaps actually because driving is very essential to get to the shops and other places,” she told Newshub.

Others have been in co-dependent relationships and are struggling with everyday tasks. Nair says she visited a widow who doesn’t know how she will adapt.

“She told me, ‘How do I manage? Because I’ve never even gone out and done shopping on my own.'” . . 

The outpouring of aroha and sympathy and the show of compassion in the face of evil and tragedy have been heartwarming but most of us are already turning back  to our normal lives.

But normal isn’t normal any more for the families of victims.

ACC will provide some financial assistance but the women who have been left without husbands will need more practical help.


Broken-hearted not broken

March 22, 2019

The Spinnoff has an abridged transcript of the speech delivered by Al Noor Mosque Iman Gamal Fouda of  in Christchurch this afternoon.

Last Friday I stood in this mosque and saw hatred and rage in the eyes of the terrorist who killed 50 people, wounded 48 and broke the hearts of millions around the world. Today, from the same place I look out and I see the love and compassion in the eyes of thousands of fellow New Zealanders and human beings from across the globe who fill the hearts of millions.

The terrorist tried to tear the nation apart with evil ideology. Instead we have shown that New Zealand is unbreakable. And that the world can see injustice an example of love and unity.

We are brokenhearted but we are not broken.

We are determined to not let anyone divide us.

We are determined to love one another and to support each other. This evil ideology of white supremacy did not strike us first, yet it has struck us hardest. But the solidarity in New Zealand is extraordinary.

To the families of the victims, your loved ones did not die in vain. Their blood has watered the seeds of hope. . .

Our loss of you is a gain to New Zealand’s unity. Your departure is an awakening not just for our nation, but for all humanity. Your martyrdom is a new life for New Zealand and a chance of prosperity for many. Our assembly here, with all the shades of our diversity, is a testament of our giant humanity.

We are here in our hundreds and thousands, unified for one purpose. That hate will be undone, and love will redeem us. . .

We don’t have to share others’ faith, to worship as they do, to believe what they do.

But we must be unified in our resolve to undo the hate and be redeemed by love.


André Previn – 6.4.29 – 28.2.19

March 1, 2019

André Previn, Composer and conductor has died.

 Previn was known for his career in Hollywood, his love of classical music and as a jazz pianist.

He won four Academy Awards.

But many will remember him attempting to perform Grieg’s piano concerto with Morecambe and Wise. He conducted the London Symphony Orchestra and was married five times.

Hat tip: Inquiring Mind who has the Morecombe and Wise clip.

 


Peter Tork – 13.2.42 – 21 2. 19

February 22, 2019

The Monkees’ bass and keyboard player Peter Tork has died:

. . . The Monkees – Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork – were brought together for an American TV series in 1966.

They were famous for their clean-cut image and were marketed as the American answer to The Beatles, notching up nine Top 40 hits.

As well as playing instruments for the band, Tork also sang on many of the tracks. . .


Former Fonterra chair John Wilson has died

January 28, 2019

Fonterra chair John Monaghan has announced the death of former chair, John Wilson:

. . . In July last year, John Wilson announced his intention to step down from the role of Chairman to focus on his health. He then retired from the Co-operative’s Board at its Annual Meeting last November.

In a note to the Co-operative’s farmer-owners earlier today, Fonterra Chairman John Monaghan said Wilson was a man whose dedication and commitment to the Co-operative ran deep.

We owe John and his family a debt of gratitude for all the time, energy and sheer hard graft he gave us as a farmer-owner, inaugural Chairman of the Fonterra Shareholder’s Council on merger, as a Farmer Elected Director from 2003, and as our Chairman from 2012.

John always brought dedication, commitment, and deep dairy knowledge to each of the representation and governance roles in which he served. On behalf of his fellow farmers he was the ultimate advocate for what we stand for.

We have lost a friend, colleague, leader and champion for our industry much too soon. Our thoughts and deep gratitude for all that he contributed go to his family and friends,” said Mr Monaghan.


Windsor Davies – 28.8.30 – 17.1.19

January 20, 2019

Actor Windsor Davies has died.

Comedy actor Windsor Davies, who was immortalised as the sergeant major in TV series It Ain’t Half Hot Mum, has died aged 88.

Davies, who also topped the pop charts with sitcom partner Don Estelle in 1975, had modelled the role on men he knew on National Service.

“Apart from the brilliance of the writing, I think It Ain’t Half Hot Mum was brilliant because that is how it really was,” he told BBC Wales in 2012.


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