Dear Karate NZ Members
Another busy year for Karate NZ comes to an end. Karate NZ in 2016 saw national teams attend the Oceania Championships, World Universities Championships and the Senior World Championships. I would like to thank our referees and head coach Sensei Duane Monk for your support at these events.
We had a new board elected at our AGM. Since then the board have been very active, planning and looking to give support to our councils for the next three years. To date the board have had very regular meetings with the emphasis on keeping all our members well informed of our activities, posting regular updates on our Karate NZ facebook page and on our website and keeping our regional chairpersons and councils chairs aware of all the correspondence we receive from the WKF and Sport New Zealand. Also at our AGM in September a working group was established to initiate a review of our governance structure, constitution and bylaws. This working group has had meetings and is working via our regional chairs that will keep our members consulted and up todate with any recommendations resulting from the review.
2016 was also a very historic year for our beloved art of Karate. At the 129th Session of the International Olympic Committee held in Rio de Janeiro prior to the Summer Olympic Games, Karate was accepted into the full programme of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The IOC described this decision as "the most comprehensive evolution of the Olympic programme in modern history". This also made it now possible for Karate NZ to finally apply to become members of the New Zealand Olympic Committee. Myself and other board members Kevin Plaisted and Chris Bennett have met the NZOC several times and we have made excellent connections with them as they have given us valuable advice on the selection process to the Olympic Games. Our final application to them will be made end of January 2017.
Karate was also added to the programme of the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. This is amazing news for Karate New Zealand, as we have many of our top cadets and juniors ranked in the WKF rankings so this will be very important to help them qualify for the Youth Olympics.
The first pre-season Training camp for Karate New Zealand will be held in Auckland January 21st- 22nd. This will be an ideal camp to get everyone back into a competitive environment. At this camp we are also holding our Karate NZ Forum. This is where the board have asked each of our councils, Referees, Coaching, Dan Grade (technical) to have their own meetings, establish their plan for 2017, and along with representatives of the board we can then present a clear and open plan to all our members of our actitives for 2017. This way everyone is on the same ‘page’ working together. There will also be a referee seminar at this training camp/forum conducted by our National Referee council.
The first major competition for 2017 will be the International Sugihara Cup, February 25th-26th held in Auckland which will attract international competitors. Then all our regional championships begin for 2017. At the CNI regional championships this March 26th, held in the beautiful city of Tauranga, our regional Chair Sensei Joseph McGregor is introducing our first ever Para-Karate & Persons with disabilities divisions. This will become a regular division in all other Karate NZ events.
Next year will be another busy year internationally, including the Senior Oceania Championships held in Sydney, the Commonwealth Karate Championships in Durban, South Africa August 30th-Sept 3rd, and the World Cadet, Junior & Under 21 WKF Championships in Spain during.
I would like to thank all our Regional Chairs, Referees, Coaches, Members and especially the parents for your wonderful support of Karate NZ. You are all that make our federation so special.
On behalf of the Karate New Zealand executive board members Rebecca Smith, Phil Laing, Gene Browne, George Glausiuss, Chris Bennett, Kevin Plaisted and myself we wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a safe & Happy New Year.
Looking forward to seeing you all in 2017!
President of Karate New Zealand