Of the 37TH annual General Meeting of KZN Conservancies Association
held on Thursday, 24th May 2018
at QE Park, Pietermaritzburg
The meeting opened at 10:15 and all present were welcomed by Rob Crankshaw.
The attendance register was duly completed and is available for inspection.
Apologies where received from Tim Bell, Sarah Allen, Di Jones, Felicity von Oettingen, Anthony Kee, George Victor, Glenda Booth, Angie Wilken, Nikki Brighton, Simon Maphumulo, Richard Winn, Mary McKenzie, Ralph Dobeyn, Keith Cunningham, Roseanne Clark, Anne Skelton, Hugh Temple, R Robertson, Malcolm Stainbank.
Confirmation of Quorum
Paolo Candotti confirmed that the quorum was reached. Out of 87 registered Conservancies 27 attended the meeting (the minimum required is 22). Proxies received were 15.
Approval of the 2017 Minutes
Proposed by Paolo Candotti, seconded by Jean and Billy Prinsloo
Tony Wint submitted the 2017/18 Financial report
• It was agreed that the Accountants Luiz & Associates Chartered Accountants (S.A.) would continue as accountants.
• Out of 87 registered Conservancies more than half have already paid their annual fee of R440.00.
• All outstanding payments for last year who agreed to stay on has members have been paid up including one donation.
• Monthly costs are mainly for administration of the Association and Atomgate, (Email hosting management)
• Financials where approved and seconded by Billie Prinsloo and Margaret Burger
A request was made from the floor that Financials be made available on the website. The Committee agreed to this.
Continue to Chairman’s Report
Chairman / CEO’s Report
Rob Crankshaw delivered the CEO’s report (attached)
Included was a call to vote for a brand name change from Conservation KZN to Conservancies KZN.
Paddy Norman (South Coast) noted that some Conservancies do not use the word Conservancy in their name.
Agreement was made to change the brand name to Conservancies KZN.
A general discussion took place.
Rob suggested that the Committee work towards understanding why Conservancies/Members close from time to time. Rob advised that CKZN do indeed meet with such Members to trouble-shoot.
Paddy Norman (Bendigo) suggested that we need utilize volunteers as much as asking for finances from the public. People are more willing to contribute time and expertise than money.
Paddy also stated that several Conservancies could share their knowledge in regard to obtaining PBO and NGO registration. Conservancies KZN could be assisting with this valuable information, and with general resources such as experience and training. Paddy suggested Conservancies KZN focus on the relationship between Conservancies and the public. If public get value from Conservancies they would be more inclined to join.
Summary: Expert advice, Sharing of resources, training.
Charlie McGillivray (Karkloof) Suggested all Conservancies connect with one another. Rob agreed and as example the Outer West are filling in gaps between Conservancies. This would join and create larger Conservancies or conservancy areas.
Edith Elliott (Upper Mpushini) Commended Rob for engaging more. Suggested making available a list of specialists who Conservancies could consult with on issues for example legal aspects as well as EIAs. Such experts could be compensated with a small retainer.
John Murray (Ramsgate) General consensus with other Conservancies that Conservation KZN website does not have enough presence. With regards to Forums – an appointed driver is needed to keep momentum. Important that Conservancies can connect with others in their area and set up partnerships and receive updates on projects.
Edith Elliott commented that, with regards to Environmental legal support, Jeremy Ridl has a list of potential pro bono lawyers.
Paolo Candotti (Kloof Conservancy) Demonstrated the system used by the ECF (eThekweni Conservancy Forum) to record the budget and economic value that their projects bring to a community. He explained how presenting the economic values of a project can assist with securing serious funding.
General continues below
Suvarna Parbhoo (SANBI) suggested:
• Citizen Science volunteers working in the area – they receive overseas funding to work and it is important to engage skilled staff as funding is becoming increasingly scarce in the biodiversity sector in SA.
• Younger members are important as they are transformative.
• Education – Eco schools do exist, and this could be pursued by the Association particularly with disadvantaged schools. She suggested creating partnerships with DBN Natural Science Museum, WESSA, EcoSchools and CROW.
• Endangered species are a concern, plants, mammals, microorganisms as well as Coastal issues – important to partner with official Coastal days e.g. Coastcare, SAAMBR – ORI. Information is available on SANBI’s Biodiversity Advisor and Species Status websites.
• Suvarna announced a free course coming up with iNaturalist. Paolo gave a brief explanation on how iNaturalist functions.
Melanie Rood (ARocha) Emphasized the importance of branding, marketing and exposure. Suggested getting more active on the various platforms available.
Denham McClure (Umtamvuna Conservancy) Denham reported that the plundering of wildlife and habitats in the area was going unchecked by any of the Authorities. Rob stated that the Association needs to assist.
Billie Prinsloo (Yellowwood Park) suggested that Estate Agents hand out booklets to new home owners which outlined legal and general conservation requirements. Each Conservancy could apply this process.
Keith Brown (Lower Mpushini) There is great concern at Ezemvelo issuing hunting permits and ongoing capturing of the free roaming game in the area. Requests that Ezemvelo provide information as to who is holding permits and how many are being issued etc. for hunting and game capture are not being responded to.
Paddy Norman (Bendingo) We need to be more active and visible – attend all meetings and be present at all public or municipal meetings
Margaret Burger (Umgeni Estuary) Expressed her appreciation of identifying Conservatives as a collective of people rather than being defined as special areas / land.
Charlie McGillivray (Karkloof) requested notification of next Committee Meeting and requested that Members be permitted to attend and be present at these meetings.
He Requested that minutes of Committee Meetings be made available to all Members.
Voting for Governing Board office bearers.
Paolo Candotti presented the voting for the Office Bearers. All nominees where voted in and approved and seconded.
Thanks. The Chairman thanked Barbara and Tony Wint for organizing the Meeting and for arranging the hospitality and Anna Jordan for her input
A short refreshments break took place
A talk by Greg Martindale, Conservation Outcomes: The Importance of creating protected areas on private and communal land, was presented to all present.
Rob Crankshaw thanked Greg Martindale for sharing his knowledge and time with the Association.
The Meeting closed at 12:30 and was followed by lunch.