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POHOS chairperson’s report 2017

The Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust (POHOS)
Established 16th November 1998
NZ Companies Office Certificate of Incorporation No 915548
Charities Commission Registration No CC31359
Winner of Trust Power Dunedin Community Award
Heritage & Environment section in 2001 and 2007


Chairperson’s Report for the period ending 31st March 2017

On behalf of the Board, I am pleased to present the Annual Report on activities within the
Trust that took place during the last year. These activities benefited communities in New
Zealand and in Poland in many ways while we were working steadily towards achieving
the Trust’s objectives.

This year the following events took place:

May 2016

On the 3rd May we observed the Polish National Day with Polish and EU flags flying from the Toitu Otago Settlers Museum in Dunedin. POHOS Members: Anna McCreath Munro,
Ewa Rozecka Pollard and Cecylia Klobukowska attended a function organized by the Polish Embassy at the Te Papa Museum in Wellington

August 2016

We all can be very proud of the fact that POHOS is very actively involved in advocating I would like to acknowledge the wonderful support we had received from the Polish
Ambassador to New Zealand, Zbigniew Gniatkowski, and the FPONZ Education coordinator, Sylwia Smiarowska .

November 2016

The Conference of Federation of Polish Organizations in New Zealand, FPONZ, was held at Tauranga. We appreciate our participation in the FPONZ. Establishing a common
platform of communication among representatives of Polish organizations from Christchurch, Wellington, Hamilton, Auckland, Tauranga and Dunedin is a very important
step towards further integration of Polish communities in New Zealand. On behalf the Trust I would like to thank Ewa Rozecka – Pollard, past Vice – President for
her dedicated and creditable work. You had represented very well POHOS on the Board of FPONZ from 2013 to 2016. As a newly elected President of FPONZ and a very proud and longstanding member of Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust (POHOS) I am looking forward to this new challenge of representing interests of Polish Communities at the national level
in New Zealand and Poland.

December 2016

The Polish Ambassador to New Zealand, H.E. Mr Zbigniew Gniatkowski and the General Polish Consul, Mrs Agnieszka Kacperska were hosted by the Trust in early December.
They were visiting Dunedin City Library to see a 238-year-old J.R.Forster book in the heritage collection. John Reinold Forster was the naturalist on Captain James Cook’s second Pacific voyage on the Resolution. In 1778, after this trip, J.R.Forster published his famous book “Observations Made during a Voyage round the World”. J.R.Forster was born in Tczew, Kociewie region of Poland in 1729 and the first Polish settlers came to Otago and Southland from the same region in the 1870s. The Ambassador presented to the library former Dunedin resident and member of the
local Polish community, Joanna Bramley’s book “Johann Reinhold Forster and Johan George Forster – 18th century scientists and explorers of the South Pacific Islands”.

Link to ODT Article


During his visit the Ambassador also:

• visited Mary Queen of Peace Historic Polish Church at Broad Bay on the Otago Peninsula to see the newly installed stain glass windows protection panels. The cost of the panels was covered by the Polish Embassy in New Zealand and the Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust.

• hosted the consular visit at the Otago Chamber of Commerce to give all interested parties the chance to submit or make enquiries for passport or visa applications, instigate searches for civil status acts and discuss citizenship issues. We had a pleasure to attend a Flute concert conducted by a well known NZ/Polish flautist, Aneta Lis from Hamilton. Many thanks to Bozena Haug for organising a small get together so members of Polish community in Dunedin had a chance to meet Aneta.

A very well attended Christmas Carol service was held at Mary Queen of Peace Church at Broad Bay on the Otago Peninsula where members of Polish and wider Dunedin communities sang Christmas carols together in many languages.


January – March 2017

We were working very hard on the Polish Theater Poster International Exhibition. The exhibition was held in the Community Art Gallery, 20 Princes Str, Dunedin from 25 -29 March 2017 and attracted 503 visitors.
Our sincere thanks to all who contributed their time, skills, a lot of goodwill layers of patience, positive initiative, determination and give it a go attitude to the unquestionable success of the exhibition specially to:-

Members of Working Bees committee: Anna McCreath Munro, Bozena Haug, Monika Wrukowska Gamble, Ewa Rozecka Pollard and Cecylia Klobukowska

Family members and friends who had helped with setting up the exhibition and roster:- Corran Munro, Chris Gamble, Alastair McLaren, Alfred Haug, Katarzyna Miscewy, Paul Klemick, Chris Carrell and Keith Rozecki Pollard

Opening night guest speakers:-  Lisa Warrington, POHOS Board Member and Associate Professor at Theatre Studies from the Otago University and Matt Galloway, Senior Lecturer from School of Design at the Otago Polytechnic.

Our Sponsors: Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Wellington, Krakow Poster Gallery in Poland, Fortune Theatre, Otago University Book Shop, Nevill Studio and Gibbston Highgate Estate.


Preserving material Polish Heritage in New Zealand:-

Work in progress on the preservation of the old historic Church, Mary Queen of Peace, built by the first Polish settlers to Otago and Southland at the end of the XIX century and maintenance of the rose garden at Broad Bay on the Otago Peninsula.

As mentioned above the stain glass windows protection panels were installed in the church in November 2016. We are planning painting the church inside and this will require considerable financial resources so we need to be prepared for it.

Please see below 1998 -2017 Church restoration work initiated, undertaken and financed by the Trust with the contributions from the Polish Embassy in Wellington, various fundraising initiatives, tremendous help from the Polish and Broad Bay communities and support from the Mercy Parish of the Dunedin Diocese:-

• Painting windows inside (1998)
• Painting outside walls and windows (1999 and 2011)
• Restoring vandalised stain glass windows behind the Altar (2000 – 2002)
• Restoring the church’s bell and building bell tower (2003-2004)
• Establishing rose garden (2003 – 2004)
• Restoring church organs (2009)
• Painting of the roof of the Church (2011)
• Installing protective panels for all stain glass windows (2016)

Co-operation with other community groups:-

The Trust cooperates with the FPONZ, other Polish associations in New Zealand, Otago Settlers Association, the Southern Heritage Trust, Taieri Historical Society and Port Chalmers Historical Society. We value this cooperation very highly.

We would like to acknowledge the wonderful support we have received from:-

  • Toitu Otago Settlers Museum
  • Broad Bay community and Mercy Parish of the Dunedin Diocese
  • Polish Embassy in Wellington and especially from the Polish Ambassador to New Zealand, Zbigniew Gniatkowski.
  • Honorary Polish Consul for the South Island and honorary member of POHOS,
  • Winsome Dormer of Christchurch.

Their efforts to strengthen and integrate our southern Poles in Otago and Southland, are

I would like to thank all members and friends of the Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland here in New Zealand and in Poland, and especially:-

Czesia Panek, Bozena and Alfred Haug, Schep Family, Katarzyna Miscewy, Dominika and Kuba Kochan, Beata and Grzegorz Peckowski, Margaret Ann Howard, Maribeth Mitchell, Steven Holmes, Therese and Mark Sharma, Peter and Jeannie Hayden, Sam Neil, Ania Kowalewski, Alice Carrell, Chris Carrell, Chris and Guy Garey, Valerie and Paul
Dayer and Bernadette Newlands.

Our special thanks members of Broad Bay community and Fr Gerald Aynley, Fr Mervyn Hanifin and Fr Sani Lam from Mercy Parish Jennifer Evans, Sean Brosnahan and Kristen Glengarry from Toitu, Otago Settlers Museum, Ann Barsby from Southern Heritage Trust,

Special thanks to: current Polish Ambassador to New Zealand, Zbigniew Gniatkowski, Honorary Polish Consul for South Island, Winsome Dormer and to the New Zealand Ambassador to Poland, Wendy Hinton, for their positive encouragement, and for looking Milestones.

Congratulations to our Board Member, Krzysztof Dzikiewicz who become a New Zealander during the naturalization ceremony held in Dunedin.

This year was also a very challenging and testing year for some of the POHOS Board
members and friends of the local Polish community. Our sincere condolences go to families
of late:-

Jaime Meikle, Son of Carol Meikle
Krzysztof Sumowski, Brother of Anna McCreath Munro
Renata Kurzynska – Dzikiewicz, Mother of Krzysztof Dzikiewicz
Irena and Zygmunt Pociecha, Parents of Jacek Pociecha
Betty Bungard,wife of Colin Bungard
Edward Biziak, Father of Dominika Biziak – Kochan

May They Rest in Peace – Minute of silence is observed by all present

On behalf of the Board I would like to acknowledge families and friends of POHOS
Board Members for their unquestionable support and understanding.

Our sincere thanks go to Gemma Dzikiewicz, Chris Gamble, Keith Rozecki-Pollard, Corran Munro, Graham Bain and Alastair McLaren.

My final vote of thanks goes to the current POHOS Trustees:-

Secretary, Anna McCreath Munro; Treasurer, Ewa Rozecka-Pollard and Board Members: Paul Klemick, Krzysztof Dzikiewicz, Carolina Meikle, Monika Wrukowska Gamble and Lisa Warrington.

It has been an honour and privilege to be part of the Board dedicated to the Polish
Heritage of Otago and Southland.

What Next?

Focusing on working together to achieve our Trust’s objectives and on continuity through realization of our operational and strategic plans aiming at preservation and promotion of Polish heritage in our region, in New Zealand and in Poland.

Operational plans for 2017 – 2018


• Joanna Bramley’s book “Johann Reinhold Forster and Johan George Forster – 18th century scientists and explorers of the South Pacific Islands” will be presented to Jagielonian University Library in Krakow and to the Emigration Museum in Gdynia in Poland – UNESCO City of Literature link


• 145th Anniversary of Polish Settlement in NewZealand. POHOS will participate in celebrations held in Christchurch, Akaroa and Wellington (where appropriate) – FPONZ Link


• “White and Green Christmas” exhibition at the Community Art Gallery –


• Consular visit of the Polish Ambassador, Zbigniew Gniatkowski in Dunedin
• Participating in unveiling John Reinold Forster’s plaque in Manapouri – “Polish Trails in New Zealand” Link
• Christmas Carols at Broad Bay Church

Strategic plans for 2017-2022

• Preparing tor 150th Anniversary of Polish Settelment in Otago and Southland (1872-2022)
• Painting of the Historic Polish Church at Broad Bay
• Restoration of 1863 Polish uprising fighter, Prince Alois Konstantin DruckiLubecki’s grave at Dunedin Southern Cemetery

I am very proud of the Trust’s considerable achievements and its well deserved recognition in New Zealand and in Poland. This is the result of hard, dedicated, conscientious, and what is most important, voluntary work of Members of the Board, and tremendous local community support and goodwill. We look forward, with confidence and optimism, to the year 2018.

thank you,
Cecylia Klobukowska,
M.Com (Economics), Dip Grad (Accounting)
Recipient of Gold Cross of Merit of the Republic of Poland
Chairperson and Founding Member
Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust
18th May 2017, Dunedin, New Zealand

Objectives of the Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust (POHOS)

  • To undertake a programme of cultural and historical education with the broader community and to provide educational resources on the cultural and spiritual issues related to Polish heritage in New Zealand.
  • To develop and provide educational resources about Polish history and culture and make them available to the boarder community in New Zealand.
  • To enrich New Zealand society by promoting cultural and spiritual awareness of Polish heritage in New Zealand.
  • To support the maintenance of historical properties of Polish heritage in New Zealand for the benefit of New Zealand.
  • To support Polish cultural, educational and historical research and publication in New Zealand or Poland.
  • To co-operate with and support other historic organisations and ethnic communities in New Zealand.
  • To co-operate with and support other Polish organisations and communities in New Zealand.
  • To encourage and support cultural, educational and economic links and exchanges between Poland and New Zealand.
  • To encourage involvement of the broader community in the activities of the Trust.



Chairperson .....  Ewa Rożecka Pollard
Phone ......+64 3 477 5552
Secretary ..... Anna McCreath Munro
Phone ..... +64 3 464 0053

Facebook ..... Poles Down South 

Contact Poles Down South

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Poles in New Zealand   We would like to hear from Poles or people with any Polish connection, who visited New Zealand and particularly those of you who paid a visit or lived anywhere in Otago or Southland.

Polski  “Poles Down South” jest stroną internetową organizacji polonijnej w Nowej Zelandii działającej w rejonie Otago i Southland na Wyspie Południowej. Siedzibą organizacji jest Dunedin.