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Nancy Goddard – Life Member

Nancy Goddard

Nancy Goddard was made a Life Member of the New Zealand China Friendship Society Inc. in 2002.

Born in 1923 in Wellington, Nancy Wai-Lan Kwok studied at Victoria University where she met George Goddard who introduced her to the modern history of China and the revolution which was under way there. George & Nancy married in 1944 and had 3 sons, Lee, Ben and Danny. They had joined the Wellington Branch of the Communist Party and were active in the protest movements aligned to justice and peace, anti-racism, an Aotearoa nuclear free zone and Maori rights. 

Together they joined and helped found the NZCFS in the 1950s. Nancy & George worked tirelessly for the ongoing business of NZCFS through the Wellington Branch, and for many years Nancy was Secretary of both the Wellington Branch and the National Executive of the Society. At the same time Nancy applied her interest in education towards the development of the early childhood sector through the play centre movement. 

Nancy visited China on numerous delegations and on one occasion spoke in the Great Hall of The People in Beijing. She also did voluntary work at the Wellington District Court helping young people, particularly Maori. This and the interest of her husband and son Danny in their Maori culture led her to join the Ngati Poneke Maori Club where, during her involvement over 15 years, she became a Kaumatua (elder). 

In later years Nancy was recognized by the Chinese Government with the honorary title of Friendship Ambassador for her contribution to the enhancement of Sino-New Zealand friendship. On her 80th birthday in 1993 she was recognized by NZCFS for outstanding distinguished service.

In 1997 the Queen acting on the advice of the NZ Government made her a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (CNZM )for community services. 

Nancy is acknowledged for building support for China in New Zealand, and building a relationship with the local Maori people: a woman well ahead of her time who just kept working for what she always believed to be right.