More Aftershocks in Christchurch
16th June 2011 by , | No Comments
I recently spoke at the Annual General Meeting of the Former Parliamentarians Association of Canada. The date for the meeting and my address had been set well in advance and I was looking forward to using the opportunity to tell the story of New Zealand, a nation known globally for its beauty, ability to produce some of the world’s finest primary produce and as a nation of innovators. It was not really a surprise when the (120) former Parliamentarians requested that I dedicate my entire address to updating them on the earthquake and the rebuild, both physically and in the context of the lives of individuals, families and communities.
Expatriate kiwis, Americans and Canadians continue to follow and support the recovery effort in Christchurch. North America’s response to the earthquake was also first on the agenda at the recent “NZ Inc” meeting in Washington DC, with discussions among the various New Zealand Missions and agencies working in North America. We were briefed by Dr Peter Watson, who has been instrumental in setting up American Friends of Christchurch (AFOC) (link). AFOC is a US based initiative that supports earthquake relief efforts in Christchurch with representatives from business, education, policy and not-for-profit groups.