Newsletter May 2020

From the Chair

I hope you’re all enjoying your new-found freedom under COVID-19 Level 2 and that you’ve been able to hook-up with family and friends again. It certainly reminds me how important daily routines and interactions with other people are to us all.

Things have been busier than ever at SeniorNet with a whole raft of online Workshops being run during (and beyond) Lockdown. Without exception, they’ve proven popular with our members and I suspect a welcome distraction from one’s own company! Over 300 people have taken part in Zoom Meetings since we started back in late March.

Our Committee met last Thursday and it’s been agreed that The Learning Centre will remain closed for the next few weeks. Taking into account all the complex factors, we’ve scheduled to reopen for onsite Courses and Workshops in Term 3 and planning is already underway to ensure a safe environment for everyone attending.

We hope to have a Promotional Day at Coastlands on Tuesday 21 July and an Open Day at The Learning Centre on the following Saturday (25 July). The Learning Centre will be thoroughly cleaned prior to re-opening and all the necessary criteria for physical distancing and hygiene current at the time will be met to ensure the safety of our members. The first Course will start on Monday 27 July.

Until we re-open in July, we’ll continue to schedule Online Zoom Workshops. We have two exciting new Workshops coming up – Google Maps (9 June) and Online Shopping – beyond the Supermarket (16 June).

If you’re not familier with using Google Maps, Teresa will show you all the tips and tricks so you can make full use of your mobile devices should you decide to take up Domestic Travel as your new hobby.

Sue is also keen to show you some of the easy-to-use online shopping sites so you can expand your new-found shopping skills. The COVID-19 Crisis has been a wake-up call for many people that it isn’t actually necessary to visit physical stores to buy the things you need – you can do it all from the comfort (and safety) of your own home.

Both these Workshops are appropriate for Apple and Android devices (and PCs) so anyone can join. While The Learning Centre is closed, both these Workshops will be offered free of charge so why not contact Elaine on 021 169 6256 and ask if there’s a spot left for you.

We are also thrilled to see the high levels of support for our COVID-19 HelpDesk. At last count, over 65 members have been assisted with all manner of technical problems over the phone. Since we can’t run our regular How Do I…? Workshops, it’s pleasing that we can still offer quality support to our members when they need it most. The HelpDesk remains open on (04) 299 0754 or by email at until we re-open the Learning Centre – also free of charge!

I’ve been approached by several members who have asked if they can make a donation to SeniorNet in lieu of the free Workshops and HelpDesk we’ve been running. This is very generous and of course, always welcome. SeniorNet Kapiti is a registered charity (No. CC22420) which means that all donations are tax deductable. Should you wish to make a donation, you can use Internet Banking to our ANZ account 06-0501-0746900-00. Please put the word “Donation” in the Code field and your membership number in the Reference field and Teresa will issue a receipt for you to use on your tax return.

A final thank you from me to all those who have renewed their membership for the new financial year. Your ongoing support is very much appreciated.

Peter Bunkall
Chair, SeniorNet Kapiti Inc.

Cheques are Toast!

Three more banks (BNZ, ANZ and Westpac) have recently announced plans to phase out cheques. It’s clear that the writing’s on the wall for this type of payment so if you don’t already have Internet Banking up and running, now’s a good time to get sorted.

We run our Introduction to Internet Banking Workshop at least once every term (including during LockDown) and we’ll run it more often if necessary to meet our members needs. If you are interested to find out more about Internet Banking, please contact Elaine on 021 169 6256 and arrange to join our next Workshop.

As a postscript to this, under current COVID-19 rules, we won’t be able to accept cash when we reopen The Learning Centre. This means all courses and workshops will have to be paid by EFTPOS on the day or, in advance, by Internet Banking.

AGM 2020

Click here to open Zoom websiteWith the likely numbers we have at our AGM’s, The Learning Centre is definitely off limits for now so the Committee has decided that this year’s Annual General Meeting will be held as a Zoom Meeting. Our Zoom license allows us to host up to 300 people at a single Meeting so there’s room for everyone!

Our AGM is currently scheduled on track for Wednesday 24 June at 1:30pm but this is subject to getting our Annual Accounts “Reviewed” in time. We will issue a formal Notice of Meeting nearer the time as required in our Constitution. In lieu of paper copies of the Annual Accounts, we will be making them available on our website once they have been Reviewed.

Committee Nominations 2020-21

Click here to nominate someone for the 2020-21 CommitteeIn the meantime, our online Nomination Form is available on our website (front page, big icon). If you wish to nominate someone to join the Committee or take up one of the Executive Positions, click here to make your nomination. Please be aware that you, your seconder and the nominee must all be fully paid up members of SeniorNet Kapiti at the time of the Nomination.

Term 3 Timetable

We’re working as quickly as we can to get a Term 3 Timetable agreed and available on our website here and here. Until it arrives, if you are interested in attending any of our regular courses or workshops, please contact Elaine on 021 169 6256 and she will put you on the waiting list. Once the Timetable is finalised, she’ll contact you back and confirm the date and time to make sure you can still attend.

Communication with our Xtra Members

As we promised, we’ve continued to work on the problem we were having communicating with our members at Xtra. After several sessions with Spark Technical Support, it became obvious that their provider wasn’t going to budge on their position as regards SendPulse. Therefore, during Lockdown, we’ve been able to set up a MailChimp Account and early indications are that we can now reach all our members in a single mail drop.

The change to MailChimp has however raised one small issue for Gmail users! If you are using the option to split your In Tray into Primary, Social and Promotions, you will find that our mailouts end up in your “Promotions” Folder. There is nothing we can do about this from our end – it’s a well known MailChimp issue. Turning the option off does resolve the problem but if that’s not convenient, you’ll need to check your Promotions Folder regularly for our messages.

Thanks to all our Xtra members for your patience over the past 12 months!! It’s great to know that you are now receiving all our messages correctly.

COVID-19 Helpdesk

We’re still operating the COVID-19 Helpdesk for our members. If you have any technical problems, please call 04 299 0754, leave your details (incl phone number) and a description of the problem. We will then assign one of our Tutors to call you back.


If you don’t hear back from us within 48hrs, please call again and leave another message.

You can also email us at and leave the same information.

Our Sponsors

Please don’t forget our sponsors – they’re important to SeniorNet and help us in many ways, including offering discounts to our members. They will all appreciate your support to help rebuild their businesses. Always show your membership card and ask if there’s a discount – you might be rather surprised! One example is that the Noel Leeming discount extends well beyond computers to everything in their store!