We were pleased to welcome back as guests to the Club Christine and Nick Hurley, both members of the Rotary Club of Wellington, well known in Rotary and diplomatic circles. Nick was High Commissioner for New Zealand to the Solomon Islands, Samoa, the Cook Islands and Tonga.
Christine has a background in public service and NGO management and worked in development aid with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and strategic HR management with the State Services Commission. Later in her career she was Chief Executive of Interpreting New Zealand, training and employing new migrants and refugees to deliver interpreting services. While in Samoa Christine headed up the Samoa Cancer Society and during their time there and in the Cook Islands Christine was a member of the Rotary Clubs of Apia and Rarotonga.
Christine is representing Wellington on the steering group of the centenary immunisation project, Rotary Gives Every Child a Future, and chairs the New Zealand engagement and fund raising committee. This a joint Rotary New Zealand/Rotary Australia centenary project which aims to immunise 100,000 of the most disadvantaged children across the Pacific over three years.
With UNICEF as technical advisers, Rotary will help introduce three life saving vaccines across nine Pacific countries; Cook Islands, Kiribati, Nauru, Niue, Samoa, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu. These vaccines will help prevent cervical cancer, deadly diarrhoea, pneumonia, blood infections such as sepsis and meningitis. A total of $2.17m has been raised so far with the target to raise around $5m. Christine pointed out to members that for $45 a head this would help save a single life, and for a grant of $4500, 100 children will be vaccinated.
All donations for these vaccines will be matched with funds from The Rotary Foundation. The Club expects to hear more and be engaged as plans further develop for the immunisation programme, and to be part of Rotary New Zealand’s commitment in our centenary year and beyond.