The Zonta Club of South West Christchurch Area, now Christchurch South, was sponsored and organised by the Zonta Club of Christchurch-Canterbury and chartered on September 6th 1979. Cornelia Hodges, First Vice President of Zonta International, attended the special function held in The Old Orchard on November 22nd 1979, where she presented the Club Charter to Charter President, Glen Price.
Grace Adair, Barbara Barkle, Elizabeth Blain, Mary Browne, Lexia Bryse, Patricia Campbell, Mary Carmichael, Joan Chandler, Joan Chappell, Mary Crossman, Sandra Dent, Betty Glennie, Thirza Hunter, Carole Hutcheson, Linda Nutt, Mary Kincaid, Jane Lancaster, Shelagh Mathias, Gillian Scoggins (Parr), Shona Thompson, Margaret Watling, Mary White, Stephanie May, Betty McKenna, Nicola Meikle, Wyn Mille
- Glen Price (President)
- Neroli Kennett (Vice President)
- Lyn Jones (Corresponding Secretary)
- Pauline Daly (Recording Secretary)
- Leanne Tattle (Treasurer)
- Sheila Bailey (Board)
- Indrani Bedi (Board)
- Ann Stoddart (Board)
- Grace Adair
- Barbara Barkle
- Elizabeth Blain,
- Mary Browne
- Lexia Bryse
- Patricia Campbell
- Mary Carmichael
- Joan Chandler
- Joan Chappell
- Mary Crossman
- Sandra Dent
- Betty Glennie
- Thirza Hunter
- Carole Hutcheson
- Linda Nutt
- Mary Kincaid
- Jane Lancaster
- Shelagh Mathias
- Gillian Scoggins (Parr)*
- Shona Thompson
- Margaret Watling
- Mary White
- Stephanie May
- Betty McKenna
- Nicola Meikle
- Wyn Miller
Two of the original charter members are still active members of our club. (Linda Nutt and Pat Campbell). The Zonta Club of Christchurch South celebrated its 40th birthday in September 2019 with a special birthday cake made by club member, Fiona Taylor, and entertainment by past Zontians, Elaine Mayo and Pam Brian.
SPONSORING & MENTORING NEW ZONTA CLUBS:
In 1988, Glen Price and Ann Skilling began organising a new club in Timaru, with the Charter Dinner for the Zonta Club of Timaru held on July 5th 1989. With Glen Price (Christchurch South) as Chair of a further interclub SOM (Sponsoring and Organisation) committee, the Charter Dinner for the new Zonta Club of Ashburton took place on November 17th 1993.
Along with monthly dinner meetings (Canterbury Club, The Elms), we produce a regular newsletter and run a Club Facebook page. Standing committees include Service, Membership, Programme, Advocacy and Publicity/ Communications, along with a Sports Awards’ Committee (since 1991), Concert Committee (2017 & 2018), Golden Z Club Committee (from 2018) and inter-club Zonta Yellow Rose Run/Walk Committee (2019, 2020 & 2021). Two members act as trustees for the inter-club Zonta Canterbury Tertiary Educational Scholarship. Club membership numbers decreased slightly during the period of the Christchurch earthquakes but are now maintained at a current healthy level.
The Club continues to make submissions about many issues affecting women. ZC Christchurch South endorses Zonta’s Say No to Violence campaign by organising an annual Zonta Says No Breakfast and has supported Shakti, Aviva and similar groups aiming to eliminate domestic violence. Since 2015, at the initiative of then District 16 Publicity Chair, Marilou Crequer, various public structures, including the Christchurch Airport control tower and the Isaac Theatre Royal, have been illuminated in orange to mark Zonta International’s 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence. As well, the Club gives active support to White Ribbon and UN Women events, with a good representation of members at the 2020 UN Women International Women’s Day Breakfast at Pemberton Gardens immediately before the Covid-19 lockdown. The Advocacy Committee also selects candidates for District and Zonta International scholarships.
SERVICE & FUNDRAISING
Since 1979, Christchurch South Zontians have contributed to numerous service and fundraising events, including fashion parades, employment seminars, book sales and an annual art exhibition. By running multicultural International concerts, we were able to fund sewing machines donated to women in Herat, Afghanistan via the International Red Cross. We later produced and marketed our own unique wool protein-based hand cream. Annual garage sales and the sale of Entertainment Books have also assisted with fundraising for our service projects. For 31 years, ZC Christchurch South has organised the annual Zonta Sports Awards, with male and female participants from secondary schools throughout Canterbury and Westland. Covid-19 postponed this occasion in 2020.
Christchurch South also produces breast cushions for women who have undergone breast surgery, distributed through the Cancer Society to local hospitals. Recently, the Club achieved a significant production total of 3,300 breast cushions since the commencement of this project in 2006.
SPECIAL FUNDRAISING EVENTS:
Refurbishing the women’s night shelter at the Anglican City Mission in 2017 was funded by two inspiring Design and Arts evenings at Design Made Christchurch, originated and sponsored by one of our long-serving members, Pat Hopping. 2017 also saw our very popular presentation of the well-known Broadway production, Love, Loss and What I Wore, in the newly-opened University of Canterbury Music and Classics building in the Arts Centre. In 2018, we organised our unique sell-out ‘String Along with Zonta’ concert in The Piano Performing Arts’ Centre, featuring violinist, Fiona Pears, harpist, Helen Webby and Steve Thomas, the Bard of Christchurch, to raise funds for the then current District project, PADA (Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Aotearoa).
We have also helped with Breast Cancer NZ, Aviva and other street collections, wrapped Christmas gifts for the Salvation Army and Aviva, sorted baby clothes for Plunket, provided funding and household goods for Shakti, and given advice and friendship to newly-arrived Middle Eastern refugee women. The Club selected Perinatal Wellbeing Canterbury as our 2020 local service project, with support for this organisation still continuing.
The tragic killings at Christchurch mosques in March 2019 focused our attention on service possibilities for local Muslim women. Club members contributed to transport costs for young Muslim mothers of children attending the Hagley College Preschool immediately after this Christchurch tragedy.
A number of Christchurch South Zontians participated in the Uniting Canterbury Women event at St Andrews College in July 2019 attended by almost 2,500 Christchurch women, while we further assisted UCW a few months later at a special dinner for affected women and their supporters.
The 2018-2020 PADA (Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Aotearoa) District 16 Project was conceived and developed by Christchurch South Zontians with professional expertise in perinatal issues, and successfully put forward to the 2017 District Conference. Retired senior midwife, Lynne King, had District responsibility for the co-ordination of the PADA District project. In 2019, all Christchurch Zonta clubs organised an inter-club Zonta Yellow Rose Run/Walk in Hagley Park, with impressive efforts by Zontians and friends, including Area 3 Director Phillippa Jacobs and Lt. Governor Desirae Kirby. Our planned April 2020 Zonta Yellow Rose Run/Walk was cancelled due to the Covid-19 crisis but later took place in October, with a good total of funds raised for PADA. Governor Desirae and Lt Governor Phillippa were again keen participants.
In August 2019, Christchurch South’s Pat Hopping and a small committee organised a special fundraising book launch evening at Design Made, Christchurch, to introduce International Honorary Zontian Dr Marilyn Waring’s latest publication, The Political Years. City Councillor Jamie Gough was MC while Marilyn provided an entertaining outline of her early influences and life in politics.
GOLDEN Z CLUB:
A landmark achievement was the establishment of District 16’s first Golden Z Club at Lincoln University in April 2018, under the leadership and continuing input of club member, Jan Fortune. Both Governor Janet Hope and Lt. Governor Souella Cumming attended the special inaugural function at Lincoln University, along with Lincoln University’s Vice Chancellor and the Mayor of Selwyn District.
Among other activities, the Lincoln Golden Z Club has held well-attended Pink Ribbon Breakfasts. Christchurch South Zontian and cancer researcher, Dr Margaret Currie, gave an inspiring address at both the Golden Z Club’s 2019 and 2020 Pink Ribbon Breakfasts.
PUBLICITY & COMMUNICATIONS:
During 2018, under the expert direction of Publicity and Communications chair, Jocelyn Johnstone, ZC Christchurch South, carried out a series of broadcasts on the Plains FM’s Women on Air programme to promote Zonta events and the highlights of membership.
AREA, DISTRICT & INTERNATIONAL INVOLVEMENT
The Zonta Club of Christchurch South has frequently combined with other local Zonta Clubs to organise joint activities such as two Celebrity Debates (1990 and 1992) which established the annually-awarded Zonta International Canterbury Tertiary Scholarships. The Combined Zonta Clubs’ Styx River Revegetation Project (1994-1999) focussed on the environment of wider Christchurch. More recently, Christchurch clubs have together organised the Zonta Yellow Rose Run/Walk for our current District (national) charity, as well as a celebration for Zonta 100 (Zonta International’s Centennial) in November 2019 and our regular annual Combined Clubs’ Dinner. Christchurch Zonta club presidents have met monthly with Area 3 Directors to discuss common issues and to co-ordinate club activities.
DISTRICT & INTERNATIONAL OFFICE-HOLDERS:
The Zonta Club of Christchurch South has provided two District Governors, Mary Kincaid (1994-1996) and Anne McMurtrie (2010-2012), along with others who have held District and International office. These include Glen Price (Area 4 Director, Chair of the District Bylaws Committee, member International Bylaws/Resolutions Committee 1980-84), Wendy Almond (Area 3 Director, District Secretary, 2017 District Conference Chair), Marilou Crequer (District Public Relations Chair 2014-16) and Jennifer Loughton (District Historian and Archivist 2008-2018, author of Empowering Women, A History of Zonta International in New Zealand 1965-2016). Past Governors Mary Kincaid and Anne McMurtrie have both served as members of the Zonta International Nominating Committee, with Mary also District 16’s representative at the inaugural international ZISVAW Conference. Anne McMurtrie (J M Klausman Scholarship) and Lynne King (PADA D16 project) have both had District co-ordination roles.
In 2012, it became obvious that on-going earthquake after-shocks and a shortage of accommodation would make it impractical to host the D16 Conference in Christchurch. In a true example of Zontian sisterhood, the combined Zonta Clubs of Auckland came to the assistance of Christchurch Zonta Clubs by organising and hosting the Christchurch District Conference in Auckland. In September 2017, the District 16 Conference, organised by Christchurch South’s Wendy Almond, again took place in Christchurch. A variety of inspiring speakers included senior police officer, Superintendent (now Assistant Commissioner) Tusha Penny, and Kimberley Wallace, alpine rescue and Antarctic safety expert. In September 2019, almost half of ZC Christchurch South members attended the Australia and New Zealand Combined Districts’ Centennial Conference in Brisbane.
In November 2019, all Christchurch Zonta clubs celebrated the centennial of Zonta International with a special event in the Christchurch Transitional Cathedral. An evening of friendship and music was enhanced by the special Zonta Birthday cakes again produced by Christchurch South Zontian and expert baker, Fiona Taylor.
The coronavirus crisis meant a temporary cessation of physical meetings but ZC Christchurch South carried on its business via Zoom with enthusiasm. Alternative virtual funding ideas were sought, while members donated dinner fees for our cancelled 2020 meetings to Aviva. Board and Club meetings, with a glass/cup in hand and no need to navigate rush hour traffic, proved enjoyable and enabled us to carry on with our usual Zonta business.
We have enjoyed working with D16 Governor, Desirae Kirby, and our Christchurch-based Lt Governor, Phillippa Jacobs-Lory. In the 2020-2022 biennium, Club member, Margaret Currie, has been Area 3 Director, with Alli Husband as her deputy. Wendy Almond is the current District Secretary. Past Governor Anne McMurtrie, has the role of Foundation Ambassador. Club committees have continued their work with enthusiasm, recruiting a number of new and potential members. In April, with other Christchurch Zonta Clubs, we held our third Zonta Yellow Rose Run/Walk to support our new District Project, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren. Other fundraising events have also focused on this current District Project, including two successful film evenings at both the Lumiere Cinema in the Christchurch Arts Centre and at the Deluxe Cinema in the Tannery. Members have also collected nappies, winter pyjamas and Xmas items for delivery to local representatives of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren. Our Club has continued to provide administrative and other support to Perinatal Wellbeing Canterbury. Members enjoyed demonstrating their skills at dancing the Charleston during an inspiring Art Deco Evening in early 2021 and their ballet moves while listening to a recent interesting Dinner address by Celia Bosman of the Silver Swans.
In August 2021, we again faced the challenge of a Covid lockdown, with some events postponed or cancelled, and Club meetings held via Zoom. Once again, many members donated their regular dinner payments to Club funds.
Our Club representatives on the Canterbury Tertiary Scholarship Trust assisted in the selection of Carla Selvam-Lyne as a worthy recipient of the Scholarship who later addressed the annual Combined Clubs’ Dinner at The Rydges. The 2021 Secondary School Sports’ Awards were affected by Covid restrictions for a second year, with judging successfully achieved but without the presence of candidates and their parents at the usual Sports Awards’ Dinner.
Presentation of proceeds from the Combined Christchurch Zonta Clubs’ Yellow Rose Fun Run/Walk to representatives of Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, July 2021.
We have had frequent input from locally-based District Governor, Phillippa Jacobs-Lory, and Area 3 Director, Anna Arps. A few member resignations have been replaced by enthusiastic new Zontians, with total membership now standing at 26. Club committees have organised our annual Zonta Says No Breakfast in the Richmond Working Men’s Club, (with continuing support from the Rotary Club of Christchurch Sunrise), and ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’, with graciously-hosted meals at ‘mystery’ locations. Erin Manning (Perinatal Wellness Canterbury), Philippa Jones (NZ Needle Exchange Programme) and Hilary Muir (Radio Host of ‘The Breeze’) have been some of the featured speakers at our monthly meetings at the Canterbury Club. Alongside other local Zonta clubs, Christchurch South has again helped to organise the fourth annual Zonta Rose Run and Walk in Hagley Park, a major fundraising, publicity and fellowship opportunity, along with our annual Combined Clubs’ Dinner with sponsored attendance by some Z Club and Golden Z Club members. ‘Lighting Up’ the City in Orange to promote the Zonta Says No to Violence programme has also been a combined clubs’ effort. Christchurch South Zontians have continued to attend the Ashburton Club’s International Women’s Day Breakfast and given support to other Ashburton fundraising projects, including their merino ‘Zoks’. Film and Court Theatre evenings and our unique ‘Hundi Project’, with the manufacture and sale of dog biscuits among its highlights, have boosted Club funds for donation to both our District charity – Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, chosen by District vote for a second biennium, and for our ongoing support of Perinatal Wellness Canterbury. Club member, Catherine Goodwin, has commissioned the design and production of special Zonta silk and cotton scarves, currently marketed both locally and internationally.
Our service programme has included the continued production of Zonta breast cushions, with additional help from Lincoln University’s Golden Z Club members and from local and Greymouth friends. With our production total now well over 3000, Christchurch South’s current aim is to produce 450 breast cushions each year. November 2022 saw the 31st Anniversary of the annual Zonta Secondary School Sports’ Awards in the newly-refurbished Hornby Working Men’s Club after a two year gap due to Covid restrictions. ZC Christchurch South continues to support this high-profile service and publicity occasion, recently featured on the Zonta International website. Alli Husband (Joint Chair), Jennifer Loughton and Fiona Green have represented ZC Christchurch South on the inter-club Tertiary Scholarship Trust, with 2021 awardee, Carla Selvam-Lyne, again the 2022 recipient. In 2023, Liz Huddleston is the successful Tertiary Scholarship awardee. Jan Fortune has continued her guidance to enthusiastic Golden Z Club members at Lincoln University. Birgit Maier was our Club delegate at the 2022 Zonta International Convention in Hamburg, Germany, also carrying proxy votes for the Zonta Clubs of Auckland North Shore and Marlborough. A Garden Party at Kate Sheppard House organised by ZC Christchurch-Canterbury, as well as a Christmas Pot Luck Lunch at Anne McMurtrie’s home, rounded off 2022.
Club Historian and Archivist, Jennifer Loughton, is currently working towards locating a suitable repository for long term preservation of our Club records, as well as exploring the replacement of Zonta International 60th and 80th Anniversary trees and plaques near the Kate Sheppard Memorial and at the Arts Centre. In May 2023, we farewelled our Club Charter President, Glen Price, as well as long term members, Dr Amama Thornley and Wendy Almond. At the same time, we welcomed our new Club President, Fiona Green. We look forward to the District 16 Conference in Christchurch in September 2023 and to the Zonta International Convention in Brisbane in 2024.
|1979-80 Glen Price||1980-81 Glen Price||1981-82 Neroli Kennett|
|1982-83 Sheila Bailey||1983-84 Lyn Russell||1984-85 Gillian Scoggins|
|1985-86 Mary Kincaid||1986-87 Jane Lancaster||1987-88 Shelagh Mathias|
|1988-89 Linda Nutt||1989-90 Elaine Mayo||1990-91 Ann Skilling|
|1991-92 Lyn Russell||1992-93 Diane Blackburn||1993-94 Pat Campbell|
|1994-95 Jennifer Familton||1995-96 Anne McMurtrie||1996-97 Bev Hair|
|1997-98 Norma Hancock||1998-99 Elizabeth Mathias||99-2000 Jocelyn Johnstone|
|2000-01 Pat Hopping||2001-02 Linda Nutt||2002-03 Cheryl Moffat|
|2003-04 Cheryl Moffat||2004-05 Pam Brian||2005-06 Shona Steele|
|2006-07 Chris Mathews||2007-08 Wendy Almond||2008-09 Wendy Almond|
|2009-10 Simonette Boele||2010-11 Pam Brian||2011-12 Jan Fortune|
|2012-13 Marilou Crequer||2013-14 Marilou Crequer||2014-15 Marilou Crequer|
|2015-16 Sue Clark||2016-17 Sue Clark||2017-18 Margaret Currie|
|2018-19 Allison Husband||2019-20 Allison Husband||2020-21 Lynne King|
|2021-22 Kim Raymond||2022-23 Kim Raymond|
Jennifer Loughton, Club Historian & Archivist, June 2023