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One of the many disruptions forced on us by the COVID-19 pandemic has been our restricted ability to meet face-to-face with members over the past two years.
With everything that's happened during that tumultuous period I'm looking forward to being able to meet as many members as possible throughout the country at Area meetings (see the schedule below) over an eight-week period starting in late June.
We've got lots to talk about.
Much of it is good news; we have thrived as an Association during this difficult period, growing our membership and strengthening our financial position at a time when other similar organisations have been pretty much driven to their knees.
That strong financial position has enabled us to confidently expand our NZMCA Parks portfolio - with our 54th member-only site, at Kaiaua, opening recently - and continue to further expand our member benefits.
The fact is, those successes are down to you, our members. So I'm keen to personally acknowledge the great work of our Area Committees, Park Custodians and all the other volunteers who have continued to work for the good of the club despite the frustrations and pressures of lockdowns and other restrictions.
Having said that, we - and our partners - haven't come out of all this unscathed.
In some cases those COVID-19 disruptions caused the very disappointing (and in some cases, costly) cancellations of major club events such as Music In The Mountains, The Timber Town Romp, and then our annual National Rally which had all been many, many months in the planning.
As our Treasurer, Arthur Keane, reports in his column in this issue the Board is forecasting reduced profit levels in the year ahead and we know already we're facing increased costs in areas like the production of this publication.
I'll be talking in more detail about these challenges as I meet with you.
Other topics that I'll cover include:
All the meetings start promptly at 7pm with the opportunity to ask questions afterwards.