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From the President - June 2020

Thursday, June 04, 2020 11:46 AM | Anonymous

Dear Fellow Members,

I hope you are continuing to stay safe and well as we move into the next stages of coping with the COVID-19 virus. It is now clearly evident that, fortunately, Australia and New Zealand have done very well compared to many other countries. At the time of writing, Qld, SA, WA and the NT have had very few or no new cases for a couple of weeks. Check out the number of cases on the RGSQ home page, updated daily by the Johns Hopkins University Coronavirus Resource Center (worldwide totals) and by the UQ-Qld Centre for Population Research (Qld totals) by clicking on the graphics or links at 

Re-opening RGSQ premises? 

Now that the Queensland government is lifting some restrictions, the RGSQ Council is considering when we could start to re-open RGSQ premises. Initially this would only be for 2-3 volunteers at a time who would feel comfortable about coming in to Fortescue Street to continue working on some projects e.g. the library, maps and archives collections and AGC scanning. This would also be dependent on staff presence. We will review the situation at the June Council meeting. In the meantime we certainly intend to be vigilant, stay at home where possible and await the results from the easing of restrictions especially around Southeast Queensland. It is to be hoped that we do not see a dreaded “second wave” of cases.

 A meeting of three Society Presidents

I am sure many members are utilising technologies such as Skype and Zoom to connect remotely with family, friends, work colleagues and networks in other clubs and societies.  On 27th April, I had the opportunity to connect with the President of the Royal Geographical Society of South Australia. We had planned to have a three-way presidents’ meeting via Zoom involving RGSQ (Iraphne), RGSSA (Leigh Radford) and the Geographical Society of NSW (Rae Dufty-Jones). Unfortunately, the Zoom hook-up failed and so, instead, Leigh and Iraphne had a phone meeting. Later, Rae contributed to our conversation notes. While all three Societies have suspended activities at least until July, we have been trying to keep our respective members engaged during the “stay at home” period via publications and online activities.

Here are some examples of what we are doing and ideas for the future:

  • Both RGSQ and RGSSA have initiated publication of new short newsletters: “Member Connect” (RGSQ) and “Keeping in touch with Geography (RGSSA). These newsletters include members’ letters from home, interesting snippets of unusual geographical facts, links to videos, podcasts, short quizzes and crosswords.
  • All thee societies are continuing their regular publications: RGSQ monthly Bulletin, RGSSA’s bi-monthly GeoNews and GeogSocNSW’s Australian Geographer journal.
  • We are posting more resource materials on our websites (e.g. video talks, podcasts) capturing lecture presentations via Zoom to share with members and encouraging members to utilise more of these online resources.
  • Younger members are increasingly connecting and utilising postings on Facebook.
  •  Iraphne has been phoning around RGSQ members to see how they are going at home. Leigh has videotaped a short personal communiqué to RGSSA members - see this on the RGSSA home page at Iraphne is also preparing a short video message to RGSQ members … watch this space!
We will aim to hold a three-presidents’ meeting twice a year (April & October) if not in-person, via Zoom. We can facilitate opportunities for our members to visit each other’s respective Societies individually or on interstate Society trips e.g. RGSQ may include a visit to Adelaide in September 2021

Members’ ideas on any of the above are always welcome.

With best wishes

Dr Iraphne Childs, President

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The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Ltd.
Level 1/28 Fortescue St, Spring Hill QLD 4000  |  +61 7 3368 2066
ABN 87 014 673 068  |  ACN 636 005 068

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