In the dying days of 2019, a virus mutated and transmitted to humans in the Huahan market in Wuhan, China. It spread with pandemic speed. Two months into the new year of 2020 it had already established footholds in many countries across the planet. It was not long before it hit our shores and led to shut down with serious economic consequences. Industries closed and large numbers of people were confined to their homes. Others lost their jobs. The dog world was caught up in this maelstrom. KUSA’s office at 68 Bree Street was closed and office personnel operated from their homes. Management and staff put in a major effort to “work from home’” as seamlessly as possible limiting the impact on workflow. It is gratifying to report that KUSA’s staff have done a sterling job and that this has been achieved without sacrificing the quality of service to KUSA members.
Meetings of FEDCO and EXCO where held on teleconferences. This medium proved successful and resulted in significant savings in travel and accommodation. Dog shows were cancelled and have only recently started to emerge from a state of enforced inactivity.
The theme for 2020 was to reduce costs while maintaining a high level of service. Our staff complement in December 2019 was 20 and has been reduced to 11. I will deal with the three “R’s” Retirement, Retrenchment and Resignations.
Sheila Thornberry retired in July 2020. We thank her for many years of sterling service to KUSA and wish her well in her retirement.
In the months of July and August 2020 the following employees were retrenched: Adelaide September, Yasmeen Wallace, Bettie Julies, Cindie Permall and Cynthia Ross. During the year under review Latiefa Hendricks, Dawn Rosier ad Delicia Lyners resigned. To all of them we extend our thanks and best wishes for the future.
Lois Wilson with her energy and drive always seemed to be a permanent fixture in KUSA. It is with a tinge of sadness that we bad her farewell. She has relocated to Britain and I have the feeling that it will not be too long before the dog world in UK experience the energy of Lois. She made important contributions as the Chairman of EXCO and as a member of FEDCO. Bruce Jenkins has taken over from Lois the Chairmanship of EXCO and in that capacity assumes membership of FEDCO. We welcome Bruce.
Progress has been made in the upgrading of the K9 programme and we should start benefitting from this during the first half of 2021. My congratulations to Pascale Midgley who is guiding this initiative. Members will be able to attend to most matters on-line. A preview of this new programme showed exciting developments. Virtually all activities that had to be handled by staff, such as registrations and payments can be done on-line. Show managers will have direct access to the programme which will make their tasks easier.
Kyle Farmer, as office manager is also to be congratulated on guiding the KUSA team in these difficult times. He has played a major role in facilitating the SKYPE meetings of FEDCO and EXCO. This has had the twin benefits of considerable savings in the bi-annual costs of travel and accommodation.
During the year, the sixth floor was vacated, and the activities of the Office are now confined to the seventh floor. The lease terminates in October 2021. We are now faced with the opportunity of renewing on a single floor with concomitant savings or considering moving to new facilities.
The German Shepherd Dog Federation of South Africa continued with its legal onslaught with the emphasis on challenging the decisions of the Registrar of Animal Improvement. An update was published in October on the KUSA website. In essence the GSDFSA have, to date, failed in their appeals and have now taken the matter to the Supreme Court of Appeal.
Covid19 impacted KUSA’s finances, but the affect was ameliorated by actions taken to keep costs under control. Show entries reduced to R264,815 in 2020 compared with R605,999 in 2019. The operating deficit increased from (R141,570) in 2019 to (R283,336) in the current year.
The rulings that applied to sporting events resulted in the cancellation of the KUSA Classic. It was decided that we should treat the Classic Sponsorship as deferred income. The impact of this decision increases the deficit for the year to (R310,560) compared with last year’s profit R13,237. It will not affect KUSA’s cash resources.
In closing, I wish to thank the members of EXCO and my colleagues on FEDCO for their support and work during 2020.
I have enjoyed my time as Chairman of FEDCO working with an effective team. I feel that we made good progress over the years.
KUSA was registered as a Canine Breeders Society and a Canine Registry for 218 breeds.
We brought the Boxer Breed back to KUSA.
FCI recognised pedigrees are available for German Shepherd Dogs registered with KUSA.
The office has been reorganised and costs have been substantially reduced. The K9 Admin System upgrading is well advanced and will bring KUSA to the forefront of similar organisations.