During the past year the Trust received $3,750 in donations with most of that coming from the 'Give-a-Little' campaign. Total equity as at 31 December 2018 stood at $660,740 which is a decrease of just over $17,000 from the year previous. That resulted from a very bad fourth quarter performance by the investment portfolio. I am however pleased to note that the first quarter performance of this year has seen a reversal of those losses and pleasing gain to the point where our total equity now stands at $700,560. I would expect Prudential Guardian to be proactive in their monitoring of the investment portfolio so as to avoid a repeat of the 2018 fourth quarter performance.
I acknowledge and thank NZ Post for their continuing support by way of their Community Post scheme.
Since its inception the Trust has made 522 grants worth in excess of $263,000. In 2018 we awarded 20 bursaries with an average value of $506. The assistance given continues to be wide and varied encompassing the whole gambit of education, sporting and cultural endeavour. 85% of the bursaries awarded went to first time applicants; 95% went to applicants resident in New Zealand; 85% of awards went to the grandchildren of Vietnam veterans; female recipients were ahead of their male counterparts 65% to 35% while 90% of recipients were aged <20 years of age with the remaining 10% going to those aged 31>.
Our website continues to attract a lot of attention and I thank our webmaster, Wayne Cribb, for his work. It can be accessed at www.evsayouthtrust.org.nz While the domain name is outdated it is well known within the Vietnam veteran community and we will not be changing it.
In December we launched our 25th Anniversary Essay Competition. It was very well supported and many of the entries were moving to say the least. The judging continues as I write this. It is hoped to announce the winners prior to ANZAC Day. Can I particularly acknowledge and thank 'CCL Together With Revera' for their generous sponsorship of the competition. The two winning entries will feature on our website in due course.
There have been no changes to the membership of the Board over the past twelve months. Can I thank my colleague Board Members; Kate Leys, Echo Lillicrap, Louise Mullane, Peter Roberts and Keith Miller as well as Anita Killeen, our Honorary Legal Advisor for their professionalism and support. Can I also acknowledge Prudential Guardian and in particular Olivia Hyslop, our client manager, and Ian Parkes, Branch Manager, for their willingness to engage constructively with the Board.
The Trust is in good shape. We can face the future with confidence.
Ross Miller, MNZM, JP
06 April 2019