The biggest social occasion of the HFNZ year was our 60th anniversary celebration in Wellington. Over the weekend of November 8 – 10 HFNZ members from around the country, and special guests from around the world, gathered to acknowledge our foundation’s journey from the first meeting in a hall in Lower Hutt in 1958.
The weekend included two main events, and a number of other gatherings of representative groups from within HFNZ.
The first big event was the formal welcome, held in the Grand Hall at parliament, and hosted by government minister, the honourable Chris Hipkins. This was the formal part of the weekend, where nearly 200 members and guests had the opportunity to renew acquaintances, before being treated to a few words from some of our special people.
Following the formal part of the night, people continued to mix and mingle. They enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect and socialise in this wonderful setting.
The second big event was the gala dinner at Te Papa Tongarewa, the Museum of New Zealand. Again, we had close to 200 members and guests attend this fabulous event. Dinner, washed down with two specially branded HFNZ wines, was punctuated by some speeches and presentations. Notably, Kyle Cunningham was awarded the Elizabeth Berry Exercise Cup by the patron herself, Piritoto were presented with a beautiful tokotoko to recognise their 10th anniversary, WFH president Alain Weill said a few words, and Lauren Phillips spoke about the activities of the National Youth Committee, and introduced us to the youth visitors from Nepal.
It was lovely to see members and guests enjoying themselves, and honouring all the work and commitment that has gone into the last 60 years. The gala dinner was a huge success.
All in all this was a fantastic weekend, which appropriately celebrated the amazing milestone of 60 years of the Haemophilia Foundation of New Zealand.
You can read more about our 60th anniversary celebrations in the December 2019 issue of Bloodline.