Secretary's Digest
Sept - Dec 2014
MAY-AUG 2014
JAN-APR 2014
SEP-DEC 2013
MAY-AUG 2013
JAN-APR 2013
SEP-DEC 2012
   
Year-end Lunch at the Marriott - 11 Dec. 2016
Subscriptions for 2017
The table decorations
The Winning table
DSSP’s 45th Anniversary – Sapphire Gala - 26 Nov. 2016
A 'blue' affair
A Winner
The Execucom
AGM at the Pearl-Continental - 30 Oct. 2016
A Minute's silence for deceased members
Editor Newsletter with Past Pres.Josephine Alexander
The Execucom
Hi-Tea at Marriott – 21 Aug. 2016
At the Registration desk
Mr.Norbert Almeida
The Social Secretary with the hotel management
Hi-Tea at Movenpick - 21 May 2016
Shireen Naqvi speaking to the DSSP
Listening to the Speaker
Hi-Tea at Al-Bustan
Secretaries’ Day at Avari Towers - 24 Apr. 2016
Rosemary D'Silva, winner of 'Secretary Burnout'
The Execucom
The President handing over a token of appreciation to the Speaker
A minute of silence for Persis Patloo
Festive Lunch at Pearl Continental - 24 Jan. 2016
Everyone has something!
The Salad Rack
Three happy ladies
AGM at Movenpick – 13 Dec. 2015
At the AGM
Execucom Members
Orix Leasing giving a Presentation
DSSP’S 44TH Anniversary - A Ghoulish Gala
Enjoying The Evening
Halloween Platter
Modelling the Masks
DSSP’s Car Rally - 16 Aug. 2015
A Relaxing Afternoon
Ready To Leave
Scrumptious Lunch
Leisure Day at the Avari Towers – Sun. 7 Jun. 2015
Having a good time
Winners of the Treasure Hunt
DSSP visits the Home for Socially Displaced Girls - 17 May 2015
Home for displaced girls
The Recreation Room
DSSP visits KVTC – 9 May 2015
The Execucom with KVTC staff
The Exercise Room
Secretaries’ Day at the Movenpick - Sun. 26 Apr. 2015
Natasha Mobed receiving a cake
Secretaries' Day Memento
Winners of the Crossword
Valentine Fun at the Marriott – Sun. 15 Feb. 2015
Celebrating Valentine's Day
Goolu Driver, one of the Lucky Draw winners
The Winners of Matching the Famous Couples
Year-end Lunch at the Marriott - 11 Dec. 2016
Amidst the festive season, the DSSP celebrated the term (2015-16) and year end with a lunch to an almost full house. This was held on Sun. 11 Dec. 2016 at the Dumpukht, Karachi Marriott. The hall and tables were tastefully decorated with tinsel, table tents etc. in Christmas colours enhancing the joyful ambiance. Members were requested to wear red and green with a touch of Sapphire which added to the festivities. In the spirit of the event everyone received a gift bag. Gala bags were also on sale at cost price.

Natasha Mavalvala, DSSP’s President welcomed all to an afternoon of gaiety and festive fun. A table game ‘Thread that Gem’ organised by Charmaine Fernandes, DSSP’s Social Secretary was played. Every table was given a paper bag containing the items to make a necklace. These were in the anniversary colours of sapphire and silver as the DSSP celebrates its 45th (Sapphire) Anniversary this year. Each group had 15 minutes to put together the chain with a participant modeling it. Nine artistic secretaries displayed their necklaces and it was fun to see the creation of each table as they walked around the hall. The judges were MOK (IPPXO), and Charmaine. The winners were Maria Lobo’s table with Rosemary D’Silva’s as runners-up. The winners each received a solar powered lamp with the option to charge through electrical mains as well.

Before lunch, there was a lucky draw with gifts including a voucher for Dinner for Two at the Movenpick, a cake from Cillies, etc. Lunch was a delectable Pakistani cuisine of Mutton Korma, Chicken Biryani, Beef Nihari, Palak Paneer, Tarka Daal, Lahori Fried Fish etc. A wide variety of salads and desserts complemented the main course.

The last item of the day was a set of three rounds of Tombola conducted by MOK, where several ladies walked away with generous cash prizes!

The event ended with the President wishing all a merry Christmas, a happy New Year and the very best of the festive season, announcing that the ceremony to hand over charge to the incoming Executive Committee 2017-18 would be held on Sun. 29 Jan. 2017. This event would be organised by the 2015-16 Executive Committee at the behest of the incoming President, Cheryl Mathew.
DSSP’s 45th Anniversary – Sapphire Gala - 26 Nov. 2016
The DSSP celebrated its 45th year of existence with a sensational Sapphire Gala. It was a "blue" affair indeed, right from the door gifts, which were presented in blue tote-style bags, to the blue balloons adorning the Khorshed Mahal at Avari Towers. The table pieces, white gladioli in blue water, completed the decor. The hall presented a tranquil and refreshing look as practically all the guests had donned varying hues of the theme colour, blue.

The gala opened with a few words of welcome from the emcee for the evening, Charmaine Fernandes. After that, Natasha Mavalvala, the President, took a few moments to introduce the Committee members and lauded them for their combined efforts in putting together an event such as the Annual Gala.

That being done, the dancing began, superbly managed by the DJ, Alfie Farrell, who got everyone into the mood with a couple of slow numbers, followed by fast tunes. Keeping in line with the theme, people even swayed to the Christmassy song ‘Blue Christmas’!

During the next session, a fun-filled game was played. It was akin to musical chairs, but with a slight twist. The chairs were placed in a square, all around the dance floor, and the fun part was that there was only one exit to run through. The moment the music paused, everyone dashed towards the exit, their partners in tow, to grab the nearest vacant chair. It was uproarious and had everyone in splits of laughter. The lucky couple who won this game was Joanita and Raphael Monteiro. Next was an elimination game. Strips of paper containing the name of a gemstone were distributed and the winning couple, bearing the strip of paper with the words “45th Sapphire Anniversary”, was Maria and Agnelo Lobo.

A sumptuous dinner awaited all who had worked up an appetite on the dance floor, and also those who were seated and simply enjoyed the dancing.

After dinner, it was time for the much-awaited lucky draws, where each person turned out to be a winner! All the prizes were beautifully gift-wrapped in blue and silver packaging. There was an assortment of prizes, from salon and spa treatment vouchers to cakes and complimentary dinners, extravagant hampers, household items, etc. The next dancing session had another interesting game. While dancing, both partners had to pass through a blue elastic loop from head to foot before passing it on to the next couple. The couple who won was Cheryl and Felix Almeida. The dancing continued through the night.

On the whole, it was a beautiful evening. Kudos to the entire Committee for putting up a very well organised show!
AGM at the Pearl-Continental - 30 Oct. 2016

DSSP’s AGM (Annual General Meeting) for the year 2015-16 was held on the last Sunday of Oct. at the Conference Room of the PC. The members who attended met the required quorum. President Natasha Mavalvala chaired the AGM proceedings along with IPPXO MOK, Secretary Liana Lobo and Treasurer Mahnaz Irani. One minute’s silence was observed for Bapsy Nari Patel, Tehmina Framroze Putloo and Bapsy Rustom Virjee, senior DSSP members who passed away on 6 and 11 Sep. and 29 Oct. respectively. The Minutes of the EGM (Extra Ordinary General Meeting) held on 28 Feb. 2016 and the Audited Accounts for 2015-16 were taken as read and approved. The President notified the members of two typos in the Minutes which will be corrected and re-circulated.

The retiring auditors M/s. Kreston, Hyder Bhimji & Co. who offered themselves for re-appointment were appointed for the next fiscal year at an appropriate increased remuneration. The President Natasha Mavalvala informed members of the excellent work done by DSSP’s Treasurer Mahnaz Irani throughout her term in office and the auditor’s comments and appreciation. Members applauded Mahnaz on her commitment.

Members were apprised of the donation made to little Ariana Quettawalla at the EGM. Ariana has had her surgery, her doctors are happy with her recovery and she has returned to Karachi. Her family is very appreciative of the assistance from DSSP and its members.

The President then updated members on the 23rd ASA Congress held in Manila, Philippines from the 25-29 Sep. 2016. The Congress had a large attendance from the entire ASA world, but when compared to the 22nd ASA Congress held in Pakistan in 2014, attendees complimented the Pakistan delegation on the exceptional Congress arranged by the DSSP. This was the work of IPPXO MOK, Congress Chairperson Cheryl Mathew and the Congress Committee. Members commended the team on their outstanding work.

The President also informed members that at the CP (Council of Presidents’) Meeting in Manila the work of DSSP’s Editor Goretti Ali was recognised. Besides publishing the ‘Secretary’s Digest’, Goretti maintains DSSP’s web and Facebook pages. In view of her work, ASA requested her to revamp and maintain the ASA web page, which is presently hosted by the Secretariat in Manila. Members applauded Goretti on her dedication. After careful consideration Goretti declined this offer in view of the impediments it could pose for DSSP in terms of payment to the web masters and hosting it from a country other than the Secretariat.

The President introduced the next Execucom to take office for 2017-18. The office bearers are:

President : Cheryl Mathew Unopposed
Secretary : Clara Lidwina D’Souza Unopposed
Editor Newsletter : Marina Fernandez Unopposed
Executive Member : Caroline Charles Unopposed
Executive Member : Glenda D’Souza Unopposed
Executive Member : Monica John Unopposed
IPPXO : Natasha Mavalvala  

The posts for Treasurer, ASA Coordinator, Social and Joint Secretaries were vacant. Sunnu Golwalla chose to take up the position of ASA Coordinator and was welcomed to the Committee. Mahnaz Irani agreed to continue as Treasurer until her position is filled.

Members were then entertained to three cards of Tombola each playing three games. Some members luckily won more than once. In between each card, lucky names were drawn and nine members won Halloween bags.

At the end of the evening members were treated to a scrumptious Hi-tea at PC’s roof top Chandni Lounge which has a spectacular view of the city.
Hi-Tea at Marriott – 21 Aug. 2016
In August, the DSSP invited Safety and Security Advisor, Mr. Norbert Almeida to speak to the secretaries. The topic ‘My Personal Safety’ proved to be enlightening and thought-provoking. As Norbert pointed out, his message was not new or different. But with our busy lives most of us do not stop to think and to pay a little attention to our personal safety and that of our families. Protecting yourself against predators and an unsafe environment is plain common sense.

Norbert quoted several examples where basic common sense could have prevented or lessened the disaster. Points to remember are:
  • Family members should be aware of each other’s activities and timings always. If one is delayed or the norm varies, inform your home at once.
  • Important contact nos. i.e. ambulance services, hospitals, Edhi, fire stations, gas and electric companies, police and CPLC should be easily available. Relatives, neighbours and colleagues contacts should always be on hand.
  • Do a Hazard Hunt in your home and office. Look for anything that could prove dangerous and correct it.
  • Have an emergency plan in mind, in case your family requires to rush out of the house. What documents or items must you carry with you? Do you have infants or elderly in need of care in such a situation?
  • How trustworthy is your domestic help as well as the servants of your neighbours and the building security guards. If you feel your residence is not
  • secure enough, do something about it. Be the AIR (Adult In the Room) in all situations.
  • Travelling to or from work, have a plan in mind if an unpleasant situation arises. The same when travelling out of the country. What safeguards do your children need to remember?
  • Be aware of the activities in your city, public holidays, events planned during key dates, road closures, processions etc. Plan ahead for these days. One might not always be able to avoid a disaster, but one can make a snatching, robbery or kidnapping difficult for a perpetrator. These scenarios need to be played out with your family, colleagues, friends etc. so that one is prepared, as it’s very difficult to think calmly on the spot. Assailants thrive on the element of surprise.
Mr. Norbert Almeida writes a regular Advisory Column for the ‘Dawn’. He can be contacted by email: ask@norbalm.com Twitter: @norbalm and has a webpage www.norbalm.com President Natasha Mavalvala thanked Norbert for the informative talk and meaningful advice, presenting him with a small gift as a token of appreciation.

This event was held at the Dumpukht, Marriott Hotel on Sun. 21 Aug. 2016. A round of tombola was played before members enjoyed a bounteous and appetising hi-tea.
Hi-Tea at Movenpick - 21 May 2016
Natasha Mavalvala, DSSP’s President greeted and welcomed all to the Hi-tea meeting on Sat. 21 May at Nargis Hall, Movenpick Hotel. To fire up our imagination and erase that self-doubt that impedes the goals of possibly tens of thousands of workers, DSSP invited people developer and training consultant, Shireen Naqvi to walk and talk us through the processes that guarantee growth and instills within us a sense of happiness and appreciation.

Age-old philosophical questions are as relevant to today's workplace as they were to the great civilisations of the past. Just as the people of those civilisations grappled with the issues of identity and sought to find their individual place in the world, today's workers, especially women, need to discover who they are and more importantly what they would like to achieve, depending on their talents and skills. At the heart of the matter, of course, lies the central question of what else could they do in their lives.

Ms. Naqvi spoke lucidly about "Me and My Identity"; explaining with the help of visual aids how men and women of distinction had become international icons, synonymous with a particular sphere of activity. Often that activity brought profound change in the world. The lives of these people were meaningful and served a higher purpose. It is that purpose that we are called to seek and find. "Our subconscious mind keeps asking us, Why? Where am I going? What will I become? And how will people remember me? Ms Naqvi said.

Our answers to these fundamental questions will ultimately determine the direction that our lives take and how much satisfaction we draw from what we do. Each one of us is born with a gift, said Ms Naqvi. The challenge is to discover that gift and utilise it in our lifetime. She also warned against letting those talents go to waste. Ms. Naqvi urged the participants to listen to their inner voice and navigate past the turmoil of the world and discover their vocation. "Be restless, keep engaged" she said, offering her recipe for fulfillment and success. "Those will be happy who have sought and found a way to serve."

In appreciation of her inspirational talk, President Natasha Mavalvala presented Ms. Naqvi with a small gift.

Members were served an appetising and delectable Hi-tea at Al-Bustan Restaurant which concluded the evening.
Secretaries’ Day at Avari Towers - 24 Apr. 2016
This year the DSSP celebrated Secretaries’ Day on Sun. 24 Apr. 2016, the first day of the official Administrative Professionals’ Week. This is celebrated internationally during the last full week in April. Wednesday of that week is Secretaries’ Day.

The invitations to the event collected by the members were a pretty bookmark that can always be used. After signing in at the Registration Desk each secretary received a one litre flask which was DSSP’s gift for 2016. Welcome drinks were served.

The speaker was the vibrant Ms. Urooj Mazhar from School of Leadership. Her talk besides being educational and thought-provoking was entertaining and inter-active. Her theme was “Shine on.” She began by asking the ladies at each table to state what age they felt they were at and how they would react to events at the given age. Ages ranged from 3 – 25!! Her next step was for members to state whether they are able to express what they wanted others to see. Answers varied as at given situations one might or might not be able to communicate their thoughts properly. Her next exercise was for each one to draw the sun and explain what the drawing means to a few others in the room. The purpose of these exercises was to define how powerful each person is or can be. In the past leadership meant the position. Today leaders are defined by how they can motivate others i.e. taking the first step or initiative in the right direction. Urooj played a few short videos on our everyday heroes/heroines. Each started small and none held prominent positions when they began. Her last point was on the Circles we live in. That is: i) the Circle of Concern - everything we are concerned about; health, family, security, education etc. ii) the Circle of Influence – everyone we can influence; family, employees, neighbours etc. iii) The Circle of Control - whatever is in our control; ourselves. We can only control ourselves and our reactions to any given situation. Our purpose should be to increase our Circles of Control and Influence, which automatically diminishes our Circle of Concern.

The President, Natasha Mavalvala presented a beautiful embroidered shawl to Urooj as a token of appreciation. Group photos were taken, before all proceeded to a beautifully arrayed scrumptious lunch.

The last item for the day was a hilarious game organised by the Social Secretary, Charmaine Fernandes. Sheets were handed out with the picture of a completely worn out secretary titled ‘Secretary Burnout’ with various ailments marked. Members were required to fill in the causes of these disorders. Rosemary D’Silva won this game, but several uproarious answers were read out to the delight of all.

Thus ended Secretaries Day 2016!
EGM at the Marriott Hotel
An EGM (Extraordinary General Meeting) of the DSSP was held on Sun. 28 Feb. 2016 at the Dumpukht Restaurant of the Marriott. This was a follow up to the AGM (Annual General Meeting) held last December. Registration of about 100 members began at 3.00 pm and the meeting commenced on time. Natasha Mavalvala was in the chair along with Liana Lobo, Secretary, Mahnaz Irani, Treasurer and Maharukh Bhiladwala, IPPXO.

A minute’s silence was observed for Persis Patloo, a senior member who passed away in January. The Minutes of the last AGM were taken as read and approved after members were assured that the few discrepancies raised at the AGM would be corrected by the Auditors at their first available convenience.

Among the matters discussed, were donations to Charitable Institutions. Members were notified that out of the Rs.150,000/- allocated to charitable causes, Rs.72,500/- has been disbursed to little Aryana Quettawala leaving around Rs.75,000/- to be used for other charities. Requests for donations were received from Don Bosco’s Orphanage for Boys, Providence Home for children from broken homes, Dar ul Sukun’s Home for Socially Displaced Girls, St. Vincent de Paul Society for the needy and St Vincent’s Home for the Aged. Members present verbally requested for donations for tube wells for the famine and drought stricken people of Tharparkar and for Ibtida Drug Rehabilitation Centre. All were discussed and it was decided that the funds would be used for Providence Home and St. Vincent’s Home for the Aged.

Other matters were, time-frame adjustment for annual subscription, the organisation of the Executive Committee and the ASA Project. These were discussed and decided to the mutual consent of all. This ended the EGM.

Rosanne Correa from PPL, a new member, introduced herself and was welcomed to the DSSP.

Members were served an appetizing Hi-tea which concluded the evening.
Festive Lunch at Pearl Continental - 24 Jan. 2016
At 12.00 noon sharp as the doors opened at Ballroom B, PC Hotel, the ladies lined up at the Registration Desk, each holding a gift ready to give in at the Gifts Exchange Counter. As each lady gave in her gift she received an orange slip to hold on to it, until the time came to receive a gift in return. (Each member was asked to bring in a gift worth Rs.300/- or more.) Kaftans and bags left over from the 22nd ASA Congress in 2014 and from the Halloween Ball in 2015 were on sale for Rs.300/- each. This desk was manned by two new members.

MOK began the day by addressing the ladies on how the exchange of gifts would take place. Hopefully all would go well as this was the past practice and had been re-introduced after a long time.

Natasha Mavalvala, President, welcomed all, wishing everyone a very happy New Year. A reminder was given to submit subscriptions for 2016 in order to avoid penalty charges. She gave a brief update on the upcoming ASA Congress in the Philippines this September and advised interested members to give in their names to Zainab Hakimuddin, Joint Secretary. Natasha notified members of the next event on 28 Feb. She also asked the ladies for their suggestions on professional courses / educational sessions they would like to attend and speakers they would like invited. Natasha informed the members about Aryana Quettawalla, a little girl in need of bone marrow treatment. The family has been unable to find a donor and have learnt of a Stem Cell Transplant being done in Singapore. As this will be very costly, the community has united to collect the required sum. A bowl was passed around for donations. The ladies as usual were very generous and cash amount of Rs 26,100/- was collected. Farida Vachha suggested that the amount spent on one tea meeting could be donated which was agreed by all. Two new members from PARCO namely Razia Aftab and Fatima Sajid introduced themselves and were welcomed to the DSSP.

Three games of tombola were then played. MOK, the favourite caller began the game and was followed by Jennifer D’Souza as a guest caller. Half the amount collected from the sale of tombola cards also went to Aryana’s treatment. A total of seven prizes were awarded to very satisfied members.

A grand festive lunch comprising of chicken biryani, chicken korma, seekh kebabs and broccoli vegetable mix was served with assorted salads and the sweet dishes were the delicious cream caramel custard and gulab jamans.

Next came the exchange of gifts, each lady had to come up, collect a number and submit their orange slip and then collect the gifts which were numbered. All proceeded towards the Gift Counter and received their surprise gifts.

The afternoon ended, we must give thanks to our committee members for such a well-organised event.
AGM at Movenpick – 13 Dec. 2015
Sumbul Room, Hotel Movenpick was the venue for DSSP’s Annual General Meeting on Sun. 13 Dec. Around 80 members attended. On arrival each secretary received a gift bag filled with goodies through a lucky number. President Natasha Mavalvala chaired the AGM proceedings along with IPPXO MOK, Secretary Liana Lobo and Treasurer Mahnaz Irani. The Minutes of the last meeting held on 8 Nov. 2014 were taken as read and confirmed.

The audited accounts for July 2014 – June 2015 were discussed and queries answered satisfactorily. The retiring auditors M/s Kreston, Hyder Bhimji & Co. who offered themselves for re-appointment were appointed for the next fiscal year at an appropriate increased remuneration.

Other matters discussed were the Associate Membership clause for new members, revival of the monthly tea meeting, penalty for absent members who have given in their acceptances / cut-off date for regrets etc. They were resolved to the satisfaction of the General Body.

The DSSP welcomed nine new members from PARCO (Pak-Arab Refinery Ltd.) who came up and introduced themselves.

Natasha informed all of the upcoming 23rd ASA Congress in Manila, Philippines scheduled for the 25-29 Sep. 2016. Members interested in attending are to give in their names to Zainab Hakimuddin, Joint Secretary.

She also informed members about the recent illness of Asma Butt. Asma was a member of the ASA Congress Committee last year where she worked tirelessly towards the success of the Congress. Her contribution ensured a highly successful Congress. Members were asked to pray for Asma and to remember Dinoo Patel, Sheila Pinto and Zarin Dinshaw who passed away during the year. One minute’s silence was observed. This was followed by a short presentation by Orix Leasing Pakistan Limited on the various savings schemes available with them and how best one can invest their savings. Leaflets with these details were circulated.

The President thanked the Orix Leasing representatives and as a token of appreciation, the DSSP gave each, a Congress Bag filled with a few items. Members then proceeded to Al-Bustan for Hi-Tea before the evening ended.
DSSP’S 44TH Anniversary - A Ghoulish Gala
“Something’s brewing and it’s ghoulishly fun…” The wordings on the invitation were the first hint of what was in store for us at the much awaited DSSP’s Annual Gala on Sun. 8 Nov. 2015.

Approaching Avari’s ‘Creepy Castle’, the guests were enchanted with spooky jack o’ lanterns, eerie bats and scary cats. Orange and black balloons completed the ‘spooktacular’ décor. The door gifts, brimming with goodies, were presented beautifully in Halloween themed bags.

The gala began with the ever-jovial MOK and President Natasha Mavalvala emceeing the event. Being the 44th ‘Groceries’ Gala, the first prize of the evening was awarded to the fourth lady and fourth gent to enter the hall; the lucky ones were Carmen Severes and William Severes. The lively music by DJ Alfred Farrell was great as always, and it took only a few seconds for couples to hit the floor.

Next on the agenda was the fun-filled Halloween parade, entitled “Which Is Witch?” All those attired in creative costumes, menacing masks and hair-raising hairdos ‘prowled’ the dance floor to the apt song, ‘Thriller’, much to the amusement of everyone. The first prize was bagged by Zarir Doctor, looking devilishly handsome as Count Dracula; first runner up went to Meher Doctor, her cobwebby hooded cloak transforming her into a bewitching Barbara Bhoot; second runner up went to Marieanna Croning, who sported a flaming red horned wig, her deathly pale make-up complementing her get-up perfectly.

No event is complete without appreciating the efforts of its team members. Just one glance around the hall and one could tell the remarkable work put in by the team, and the thought that went into every detail. The Executive Committee was called upon the stage and lauded for a job well done.

The guests were kept entertained throughout with many games, such as the Balloon Dance, Elimination Game and Lucky Chair, and before long it was time for dinner. The theme-related sumptuous spread left all spellbound! Undoubtedly, the buffet table was a treat to the eye as well as the palate, with delectable dishes such as witches’ brew, mummy rolls, monster mash, bloody delights, jello monsters, creepy fingers and eyeballs, to name a few.

Lucky draws on the invitation cards were held. There were loads of attractive prizes, the bumper prize being a Cathay Pacific airline ticket, sector Dubai - Hong Kong - Dubai, which was won by Catherine (Kitty) Rodrigues.

Then it was time for a fun table game called “The Witching Hour.” Halloween masks had to be created within a given time frame, using all of the items in the kit that was provided, i.e. black and orange craft paper, matching ribbons and rubber bands. This game clearly brought out the artistic streak in everyone, as each table tried to outdo the other in producing the most impressive mask, which then had to be ‘modelled’. The masks were judged based on creativity and innovativeness, and the one selected was a superbly crafted Bat Mask modelled in a hilarious manner by Noel Rodrigues.

The dancing continued for all those who wanted to dance the night away.

All in all, it was an excellent evening. Three cheers to the Executive Committee for putting up yet another marvellous event.
DSSP’s Car Rally - 16 Aug. 2015
The DSSP honoured Pakistan’s Independence with a Car Rally for its members, their families and friends. The rally timings were from 10.00 am to 12.00 noon with ten cars participating each with a crew of four – five. Those not taking part in the rally walked in around noon, well in time for the rally results, lunch and a game of tombola. As this was the first time many participated in a car rally everyone enjoyed themselves and had fun.

The route began and ended at the Karachi Parsi Institute in the heart of the city meandering through Karachi’s residential and business areas, parts of the old city as well as the newer areas of Defence. All were well known spots and contestants were asked to note down the names of a building or signboard, photograph themselves in front of the selected spot or purchase a small item bringing back the cash memo. The clues to the stops on the route were in rhyme skillfully composed by DSSP’s Ex-President Maharukh Bhiladwala (MOK). The route was planned and tested by President Natasha Mavalvala and MOK and was only shared with the Execucom before the end of the rally. A few of the selected spots were Makro Supermarket, Finance and Trade Centre, National Medical Centre, Axact, Canine Platoon, Shell Pakistan, Frere Hall, Karachi Municipal Corporation, Merewether Tower, I.I. Chundrigar Road, the Passport Office, St. Patrick’s Cathedral etc.

The winning team was Belinda Fonseca’s and the runners up were Rayomand Irani’s scoring 225 and 200 points respectively from a maximum of 300. Both received gift vouchers for petrol. The winning team also received mementos.

After lunch three rounds of tombola were played. Joel Santamaria and Lavinia Lobo luckily won a line and a full house each. The other winners were Lily Fonseca, Mercy Fialho, Amelia D’Mello, Debbie Moscrop and Stella Michael.

The next event on the calendar is the annual gala which is normally awaited by all.
Leisure Day at the Avari Towers – Sun. 7 Jun. 2015
Leisure Day with a Hawaiian theme was held at the Avari Towers Swimming Pool on Sun. 7 Jun. On arrival everyone got an orange or green lei. The grassy stretch beside the pool was set up with a marquee and tables and chairs. Due to the sultry weather, a heavy lunch was not served but Karachi’s popular street foods and snacks were offered. The hotel arranged snack stations of pani puri / bhel puri, mini burgers, vegetable cutlets, red and white pastas, jalebies, doughnuts etc. On the beverage counter was chilled lemon with mint served throughout the day. The snacks counters were open from 1.30 pm till closing.

The pool was refreshing and many enjoyed a cool afternoon. A couple of games were played for the children and tombola for all. In the Treasure Hunt, the first prize went to Chrysanne Fernandez, followed by Cymone D’Silva, Carlin D’Lima and Joaquim Almeida. The Parent and Child game was again won by Chrysanne and mum Francesca Fernandez followed by Cymone and mum Rosemary D’Silva. Three rounds of tombola were played where five lucky ladies and one gent Conrad D’Costa went home winners.

The Avari Towers generously offered the use of the pool an hour beyond the allotted time of 4.00 pm. Everyone left happy and content.
DSSP visits the Home for Socially Displaced Girls - 17 May 2015
An execucom member visited the Home for Socially Displaced Girls - the Children of Dar-ul-Sukun on Sun. 17 May. The children are from the original Lemmens Home (opened in 1972) and Janiville (opened in 1981). There are around 50 girls aged 5 – 15 and above. Some are special children and all are either orphans or whose families are unable to look after them. The home provides them with all the necessities of life and is run solely on donations.

Sr. Zita D’Cunha, an FMCK (Franciscan Missionaries of Christ the King) nun is in charge and is assisted by four nuns. After the children complete their education, some undertake nurses or teachers training to secure employment. The girls who have homes to return to, do so. But those who have nowhere to go stay back. Presently there are a couple of older children as well.

The home for socially displaced girls is under the patronage of Dar-ul-Sukun which also runs several other homes throughout Pakistan.
DSSP visits KVTC – 9 May 2015
On Sat. 9 May members of DSSP’s Executive Committee visited KVTC (Karachi Vocational Training Centre). In Nov. last year at one of our tea meetings, Mr. Ovais ur Rahman Khan, Project Manager, briefly introduced KVTC and invited DSSP members to visit.

KVTC was established to assist the mentally challenged of our society about 25 years ago, by Dr. Inam-ur-Rahman Khan a consultant psychiatrist with 14 years of work experience in the UK, and his wife Mrs. Robina Inam a UK trained Vocational Therapist.

Ms. Faiza Khalil, from the Associate Partnerships and Communication Cell, was our guide and took us through the entire centre, explaining the function and purpose of each section. KVTC looks after every need of its students. From teaching them how to dress, eat, cook and take care of themselves to assisting them to gain confidence, develop friendships and build relationships so that they can live as responsible independent members of society. Some of the skills taught are carpentry, tailoring, block printing, embroidery, office and computer know-how etc. and KVTC finds employment for them. Many who were students at KVTC are today’s teachers. We visited every classroom, from the academic to the occupational ones where we saw students at work. The items made by them are sold at biannual exhibitions or at the KVTC office. A couple of wooden items block printed material and outfits were on display.

Students are provided with transportation from home to the centre and back and round the clock guidance if needed. Support staff is on stand-by throughout the day. School hours from Monday to Saturday are 9.00 am – 2.00 pm with lunch at 11.00 am. Adjacent to the school, within KVTC’s premises, is a hostel which houses 26 boys and 8 girls. A matron supervises and runs the hostel along with staff. There are physiotherapy classes, motor development exercises and exercise training, an auditorium for singing and acting etc. KVTC students participate in the Special Olympics and have won several prizes. KVTC is run on donations. Students who are unable to pay either the full fee or part of it are subsidised and benefactors sought. Before a student is enrolled they are evaluated by a team of doctors, psychologists etc. and the parents interviewed. KVTC refuses students whom they are totally unable to help. KVTC’s aim is to take every student forward even a small percentage if possible. Taking in students who are beyond help is denying entry to another who is able to improve.
Secretaries’ Day at the Movenpick - Sun. 26 Apr. 2015
The DSSP marked Secretaries’ Day this year on Sun. 26 Apr. at the Nargis Room, Movenpick Hotel. Soft drinks were served on arrival. The memento was a set of six multi-coloured clips with the day of the week printed on them, usable at work or home. Secretaries’ Day was sponsored by Qatar Airways courtesy of Juliana Peter. The President commenced the afternoon giving a brief history on how Secretaries’ Day, now also known as Administrative Professionals’ Day, came about.

The programme chalked out for the day was a talk by IPPXO MOK on common errors made in the English language. One of the key skills of a competent secretary is her impeccable spoken and written English. As MOK explained, today with cell phones, texting and SMS one is liable to make mistakes. Some of the topics covered were spelling in the use of plurals, the apostrophe, prepositions, hanging participles, pleonasms etc. The presentation was peppered with humorous rhymes. At the end a condensed handout was given to the members.

The talk was followed by a number of games all complied by MOK. The first was a Crossword with answers relating to the workplace. Seven winners emerged from which two lucky answer sheets were chosen. Judell Almeida got a gift voucher for lunch for two at the Al-Bustan, Movenpick and Christine David received a complimentary cake from Maria D’Souza. The remaining five got a consolation gift of a fizzy drink can courtesy of Murree Brewery. The second game was a Scavenger Hunt. Table Four managed to collect the highest number of items on the list and each lady at the table received three cans each of the Murree Brewery drink. The last was a Word Quiz, the answers of which had the alphabets DSSP in them. Audrey D’Lima got 13 out of 20 correct with Natasha Mobed close behind. Audrey received a gift voucher for dinner for two at the Al-Bustan, Movenpick and Natasha got a cake courtesy of Maria D’Souza. There was a tea/coffee break between games. Before closing two lucky invitations were selected. Debbie Santamaria and Piroja Engineer each received a complimentary cake from Movenpick.

The buffet included peas pullao, chicken karahai, beef behari kebab, salad and dessert bars etc. The day ended at around 4.00 pm with members expressing their satisfaction.
Valentine Fun at the Marriott – Sun. 15 Feb. 2015
Celebrating Valentine’s Day on Sun. 15 Feb. at the Suzie Wong, Hotel Marriott was the first event of the DSSP’s term. Registration began a few minutes before the scheduled time of 3.00 pm with around 80 DSSP members. Natasha Mavalvala, DSSP’s President welcomed all and began the evening by giving a brief history of St. Valentine’s Day.

Without further delay, the first game was played which was matching Famous Fictional Couples. Marie Anna Croning and Ruhee Majid, the lucky winners each received a box of assorted chocolates courtesy of Lorraine Alfonso of ‘Cake Creations’.

Next was an invitation to members to compose and read out a Valentine verse of four lines or more. About a dozen budding poets came up to read their compositions amongst applause. In order to choose a winner, each was requested to once again read their verse. The audience were asked for a show of hands to demonstrate their approval. Sunnu Golwalla and Maria Lobo were the winners who also received a box of chocolates. Past President MOK, an excellent writer of poetry and prose also jotted down a few lines, not included in the contest, but read out for everyone by Charmaine Fernandes, Social Secretary.

The last game was a Valentine’s Day Crossword won by Natalia Fonseca and Afroze Tungekar. Each received a bag of cookies, prepared by Belinda Fonseca of ‘Love at First Bite’.

Next was a lucky draw where the names of four members were picked from all present. Rose D’Cruz, Goolu Driver, Nancy Cardoza and Merlyn D’Silva each received a bag of cookies.

Hi-Tea was a scrumptious spread. The evening ended at around 6.00 pm with many members expressing their delight and appreciation. On the way out each member received a complimentary six pack of Fizzy Drinks, courtesy of Mr. Isphanyar Bhandara of ‘Murree Brewery’.
Handing Over to the next Execucom & the Year-end Dinner – 26 Dec. 2014
The Handing over to the next Executive Committee and the year-end Dinner/Dance and was held the day after Christmas at the Beach Luxury Hotel. The Jasmine Hall was festively decorated in Christmas colours.

The evening began with President MOK welcoming all to this last event of the year and of the current Execucom. The President called each retiring Committee member and presented her with a Certificate stating the post held by her. The incoming Executive Committee was then called up by the President who also stated the posts they will be holding. Each outgoing Executive Committee member handed over a lighted candle to the office bearer (passing the torch) replacing her. They were then sworn into office by the President. The DSSP Flag was folded and alongwith the DSSP office keys and data USB handed over to the next President.

The office bearers are:
President: Natasha Mavalvala
Secretary: Liana Lobo
Treasurer: Mahnaz Irani
ASA Coordinator: Outgoing President MOK explained that for the term preceding the 22nd ASA Congress, it was essential to have an ASA Coordinator.  Currently, the post is vacant and will be filled if the need arises.
Social Secretary: Charmaine Fernandes
Joint Secretary: Zainab Hakimuddin
Editor, News Bulletin: Goretti Ali
Executive Member: Persis Solan
Executive Member: Juliana Katherin Peter
Executive Member: Arnawaz Billia
Immediate Past President & Ex-Officio Member: MOK
Sunnu Golwalla and Shahrazad Irani, MC’s for the ASA Congress in September were then presented with tokens of appreciation. Joseph Fernandes, the DSSP office caretaker was also called upon and presented with a token of appreciation for his services to the DSSP over the years.

The evening continued with dancing and games. Disc Jockey Alfred Farrell was in attendance. Buffet dinner was served which was followed by a table game which was a quiz on Christmas. Each member of the winning table received a small gift. The evening ended with wishes for a happy and peaceful New Year.
AGM at the KPI – 8 November 2014
The Annual General Meeting on Sat. 8 Nov at the KPI was the penultimate event for the DSSP Execucom’s term. President Maharukh Bhiladwala (MOK) began by reminding members who had brought in advertisements/contributions for the ASA Congress to ensure that their companies had made payment.

Subscriptions for 2015 due by 15 Jan. were being collected by the Treasurer Mahnaz Irani and receipts for 2014 were available for collection. After this event all old receipts would be destroyed. The Handing over ceremony to the new Executive Committee 2015-16, followed by the year-end Dinner/Dance was slated for 26 Dec. at the Beach Luxury Hotel.

One minute’s silence was observed for Shahnaz Mehrshahi, a senior DSSP member who passed away recently after a prolonged illness.

On behalf of the DSSP, MOK apologised for the error in omitting the name of late Past President Havovi Vachha from the ‘ASA Remembers’ page of the Congress Souvenir. She recorded that Havovi Vachha served several terms as DSSP President and it was during her tenure in 2004 that Annette Menezes won the Professional Secretaries Award at the 16th ASA Congress in Singapore.

Mr. Ovais ur Rahman Khan, Project Manager, Karachi Vocational Training Centre (KVTC) then gave a brief talk introducing the Centre. KVTC trains the intellectually challenged from 16 years onwards and finds employment for them. The skills they are taught are carpentry, tailoring, block printing, embroidery, simple office and computer know-how etc. KVTC hoped DSSP members through their employers could assist. Their web address is www.kvtc.org.uk

The Minutes of the last Meeting held on 23 Nov. 2013 and the Audited Accounts for 2013-14 were taken as read and approved.

The President introduced the next Executive Committee to take office from 1 Jan. 2015 – 31 Dec. 2016.

The surplus items from the Congress were distributed in Lucky Dips with every member getting a gift. The gifts received by the President from the ASA countries were auctioned with members picking up valued pieces.

Hi-tea was served, followed by tombola which concluded the evening.
22nd ASA Congress: 13-17 September 2014
For details see Secretary's Digest Congress Issue
Eid / Independence Celebrations - 9 Aug. 2014
DSSP members celebrated Eid and Independence Day at the KPI Sat. 9 August 2014. The evening started with President MOK introducing the programme. Each table was colour coded and on arrival members were given a coloured slip of paper where they were asked to write their name and to sit at the relevant table.

The first game was a Jigsaw Puzzle of the Pakistan Flag. Each table was asked to remake the flag. Table 1, the Brown table was the winner. For the second game, each table was given an envelope containing the requisite alphabets. As MOK read out words pertaining to the occasions, the table that made up the word first, was the winner. Table 5, the Yellow table won this game. The last game was “How well do you know your history?” Questions were asked on the creation of Pakistan and its founder. Table 3, the Red Table won this game.

Prizes were distributed to the winners at each table and a lucky draw was held as well, where a few members won extra prizes

Deborah Santamaria and Mahnaz Irani manned the Congress Registration Desk where members had the opportunity to submit their Forms for the Congress.

Hi-tea was served before closing and members left after an enjoyable evening.
Memorial for Past President, Lily Dastur
On 6 July, the DSSP held a commemorative service at the SIRPA Hall, KPI honouring one of its early Past Presidents, Lily Dastur. Lily returned home on the night of 20 May after a protracted illness.

The service began with one minute’s silence as a mark of respect. President MOK in her eulogy recalled her earliest memories of Lily, a glamorous, vibrant person. Lily was the one who first introduced DSSP to ASA at the 2nd ASA Congress in Bangkok, Thailand, in 1976. At that Congress, four members represented Pakistan, Lily heading the delegation, Thelma Musani as Secretary, Executive Committee Member Jean Scott and MOK. After her Presidential term Lily was not very active on the DSSP Committees, which would account for why many recent members are not aware of the major role she played in facilitating DSSP in its early days. Lily was fairly regular in attending DSSP’s events and did not hesitate to offer her counsel and comments whenever she felt it benefited DSSP.

MOK’s remembrances were followed by a popular elegy “The Rose Beyond The Wall” by A.L. Frink read by Roshan Mana. Shahrazad Irani then recollected her memories of an enthusiastic, lively, happy, charming and dynamic Lily.

About 20 condolence messages by members were read and then Joss Sticks lit and placed beside a framed picture of Lily Dastur. These were all handed over to Dhun Dastur, Lily’s cousin and another of DSSP’s ardent stalwarts.

The memorial ended on a bittersweet note. Appreciative and joyous of the life of Lily Dastur and mournful and sombre on her passing. We are poorer for the loss of such a person.
Obituary
This is to announce with great sadness, that Past President, DSSP, Lily Dastur, passed away on the night of 20 May 2014 after a protracted illness. A die-hard professional career-Secretary, Lily was the one who first introduced DSSP to ASA at the 2nd ASA Congress in Bangkok, Thailand, in 1976, where I was proud to have attended with her. I also worked on the Executive Committee under her Presidency and learned a great deal from her brisk and charming management style.

Although after her Presidential term she was not very active on the DSSP Committees, she was fairly regular in attending our events and did not hesitate to offer her counsel and comments whenever she felt they could benefit DSSP. Rest in peace, Lily, you will be greatly missed.

MOK
(Maharukh Bhiladwala)


Secretaries' Day 2014
Secretaries of the DSSP honoured their day on the 27 April at the Avari Towers. A busy programme was scheduled which began with over a 100 members registering at 11.00 am. All received a souvenir of a little black sling purse. Beside the Registration Desk was a Lucky Dip Table. Raffle numbers were also on sale.

President Maharukh Bhiladwala began the day welcoming all and thanking Qatar Airways for sponsoring Secretaries' Day. Our Speaker was Clifford Lucas who spoke to the secretaries on Safety and common sense precautions one can take to minimize the risk of a robbery or attack. The highlight of the day was the culmination of the Professional Secretary Award. PSA winner 2014 is Ms. Natalia Fonseca. For details please see the PSA Page.

In the afternoon the ASA Project team, gave a presentation on their project, which will be presented at the upcoming Congress. Next was a table quiz with questions on the secretarial profession, ASA and DSSP. Table 4 won with all its members receiving a small gift. The raffle draw was held and a few ladies left with some very useful electrical items. Two lucky secretaries also won return tickets on Qatar Airways. Secretaries’ Day ended with MOK thanking the Execucom for their hard work in making the day a success.
Valentine Day / Basant at the KPI - 23 February 2014
The DSSP marked Valentine’s Day and Basant on the last Sunday in Feb. MOK began the celebrations by welcoming those present. She advised them that the next event would be Secretaries’ Day to be celebrated on 27 April.

The day began with a Valentine game played in groups. Each table was given a kit containing similar artwork items. The goal was to prepare the best Valentine Card. Four tables participated and Table 2 was the winner, where each person at the table received a gift. The next game was the Basant Ball where all had a try, at throwing the ball into a box, a few feet away. Four successful members received prizes. The third game was Tombola with a slight variation. Instead of numbers, members were to cut off words with a Valentine / Basant theme. Two winners emerged.

Lunch was catered by Clarence Smith with a fusion menu, dessert and a soft drink. Subscription receipts for 2014 and incentives for the last Gala were collected by the members. A very pleasant afternoon of games and meeting / greeting friends and ex-colleagues ended around 2.30 pm.
Lunch with Qatar Airways - 18 January 2014
On Sat. 18 January, Qatar Airways hosted a lunch for the DSSP at the Hotel Marriott. This was arranged by Ms. Juliana Peter, a relatively new member to the DSSP who is the Executive Secretary to the Country Manager Pakistan- Mr. Sherif Kamel.

She was the moderator for the day ably assisted by colleagues, Ms. Afsheen Wajahat, Reservations Officer, Ms. Lynn Ann D’Souza, Human Resources Coordinator, Mr. Zeeshan Siddiqui, Senior Marketing Executive and Mr. Muhammad Jawad, Sales Manager Karachi.

MOK opened the event by thanking Qatar Airways for their support to the DSSP and also announced the programme for February. The afternoon began with a short film on Qatar Airways products. This was followed by a Quiz and then lucky draws, where several DSSP members went home with prizes.

On arrival, we were served a welcoming fruit drink and lunch was a lavish affair of 7 – 8 dishes along with salads and desserts. We were joined by Mr. Sherif Kemal, Qatar Airways Country Manager who in sanctioning this event has shown his immense support for the DSSP and secretaries at large.

After lunch another lucky draw was held. Each seat had a card for members to fill in their contact details and one on which to note their comments. The contact details cards were collected and three lucky winners were chosen by Mr. Sherif Kemal. The 1st prize was an I-pad and the 2nd and 3rd prizes were return tickets to any Qatar Airways destination!! Concluding the event, Qatar Airways inflight magazine Oryx was distributed and everyone received a gift bag containing Qatar Airways Desk and Computer Calendars with a lady’s wallet and pen. A group photo was taken on the steps of the Marriott.

The DSSP is very appreciative of Qatar Airways assistance and encouragement which was expressed by our President MOK.
Year-end Lunch at Al-Harmain - 8 December, 2013
Our last event for the year was held at Al Harmain Towers’ Noorjehan Hall on Sun. 8 Dec. MOK began the afternoon’s event by welcoming the members and explaining the commencement of the PSA (Professional Secretaries Award). Every Congress hosts the PSA and the minimum requirement of contestants is six from the 14 ASA countries. The DSSP looks forward to putting forth Pakistan’s Secretary of the Year. MOK then introduced Yogi Wajahat who was our Speaker for the day.

Mr. Wajahat teaches Yoga and is a consultant and healer. He stresses on the fact that “You are what you think”. If a person has a positive view on life, she will always be happy and content. You require goals in life. Once you have an aim, you naturally move towards that aim. Yogi Wajahat demonstrated to the ladies a few simple stretching exercises and one-minute exercises that relieve stress and improve health. These can be practiced anywhere.

After a hearty lunch, two fun filled games were played for which prizes were given out. One was collecting the most “Happy Holidays” stickers from the tables, chairs etc. which was won by Baki Marfatia. The other was similar to Botticelli, but with a Christmas theme. At the end, invitation coupons were randomly picked from a bag and prizes given. Most ladies went home with a gift. So ended 2013. We look forward to 2014.
AGM at Hotel Mehran
DSSP’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held at the Hotel Mehran at 4.00 pm on Saturday, 23 November 2013. MOK (President) chaired the proceedings along with Mahnaz Irani, the Treasurer.

The Minutes of the Extra Ordinary General Meeting held at the KPI on Sunday 25 August, 2013 were taken as read and approved as there were no queries / comments. The audited accounts for the fiscal year July 2012 – June 2013 which had earlier been emailed to the members were approved unanimously.

Coupons for the year-end lunch at Al-Harmain on 8 December were collected by those present. Three rounds of the ubiquitous Tombola were then played and some very lucky ladies went home with more than one prize. Before closing for the evening, members walked into the Kanwal Restaurant for a lavish Hi-Tea. As we were a couple of members short of the amount paid for, MOK arranged for Hotel Mehran to present the DSSP with a box of tea items. Villy Daruwalla received this through a lucky draw.
The 42nd DSSP Gala – A Night to Remember
The 42nd Annual Gala of the DSSP was held on 5th Oct. 2013 at the Avari Towers. The theme of the night was Black and White. A large number of guests dressed in their finest reflecting the theme packed the hall almost as soon as the doors opened. The DSSP Executive Committee ensured that each guest was given a goody bag comprising of products for everyday use, with DSSP members getting a 2nd bag. The greeters seated the guests at their designated tables as music by Karachi’s renowned DJ Alfie waft around the hall creating a lively ambiance. The Khorshed Mahal (hall) was tastefully decorated with black and white balloons and table deco, surrounded by advertising standees and banners on the periphery.

Ms. Maharukh Bhiladwala (MOK) President of the DSSP welcomed the secretaries and their guests to the “Real Estate” Anniversary Gala and without much ado threw the floor open to the eagerly waiting guests. Prizes were given to the fourth lady and second gent to enter the hall. Likewise the fourth gent and second lady on the floor received prizes.

The music started with a few slow numbers and within a flash almost all the chairs emptied. After the first session, with the crowd in the mood, a couple of games were played and spot prizes distributed. A number of prizes were also given out to lucky card winners.

The President then introduced each Committee Member and praised them for their hard work in making the Gala not only possible but also highly enjoyable.

A lavish dinner was served which consisted of Chicken Behari Boti, Seekh Kabab, Beef Medallion, Vegetable Jalfrezi and Singaporean Rice. This was accompanied by a Salad Bar containing a number of salads and a Dessert Bar of various desserts. Prior to dinner guests were served Chicken Corn Soup with a bread basket, Vegetable Spring Rolls and Quiche Lorraine at their tables.

After dinner the much awaited DSSP Special was held in which members were given prizes which comprised of cheque book / credit card holders and other prizes including a large array of electronics. Each member received a black and white Salt and Pepper Cruet as a memento.

This was followed by another session of dancing which led to the spirited medley when the crowd went wild to the beat of Maria Patache, Mexican Hat dance, Birdie dance, Shahbaz Qalandar etc. Some of the guests were seen removing the black sashes from the chairs and tying it around their heads and using the napkins as they tried to replicate traditional dances. This continued till the wee hours of the morning.

It is a general consensus that the DSSP Gala is one of the finest held in Karachi, eagerly looked forward to, as it affords one and all, a night of fun, frolic and an opportunity to meet and greet old friends and new.
EGM at the KPI - 25 August 2013
Karachi Parsi Institute (KPI) was the venue for DSSP’s Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) on the last Sunday in August at the Sirpa Hall. Around 70 ladies attended. A number of matters were discussed and after a majority consensus decisions were taken which will be incorporated in DSSP’s Constitution. Following that, relevant matters (not relating to DSSP’s Constitution) were also debated and resolved. Mahnaz Irani is the new Treasurer taking over from Najiba Quettawala. An anonymous DSSP member was thanked for her generous donation of Rs.50,000/- to the ASA Congress Fund.

Two games were played before lunch which consisted of Dhansak, Kachumbar and other Parsi delicacies. A round of Tombola was enjoyed by all before closing for the day. Many guests (non-Parsi’s) availed this opportunity of taking home bakery items prepared at the KPI Cafeteria.
DSSP’s long awaited Leisure Day!!! 30 June, 2013
Kudos to the entire DSSP committee for arranging such a well organized event! Special thanks to Cheryl Mathew who was at the helm, arranging the juicy egg sandwiches, supervising the live BBQ, serving the hungry mob, and all with a smile!!

From the very start it was smooth sailing, buses were on time, as were the ladies, and off we were at 8.45 a.m sharp. The weather also cooperated with us that day, and we had lovely cloudy skies. We reached the venue - the lovely RIVERSIDE FARM after an hour on the road, and the ladies disembarked from the buses and went toward the hut area. After a delicious snack, all dispersed, some into the pools, others playing cards or just chatting and chilling!

Lunch was biryani and delicious BBQ tikkas and gola kebabs, complete with “garam garam” parathas!! Everyone was hungry by this time, after multiple rounds of the pool! To cool off, we were served with Kulfi. After lunch, it was time for a short snooze; however the water was too appealing for some. Then after tea, all had to reluctantly get out of the pool and get ready for the journey home. Many had to be reminded several times that the buses would leave at 5 p.m. sharp!

They say, all good things have to come to an end, and indeed it was a lovely day out. Besides the arrangements, and the venue, the crowd of ladies was the clincher! Everyone was comfortable and happy to chat and do some catching up with the other ladies. Sometimes we miss out on this aspect in our busy lives. Finally back on the bus, tired but happy, Marie Anna Croning had fun belting out “Show me the way to go Home”……..before promptly “snoozing” again…..could hardly keep her eyes open, all in all a fun trip.
Secretary’s Day 2013 at the Marriott
The DSSP celebrated Secretaries Day on Sunday 28 April at the Hotel Marriott, with talks, presentations, question and answer sessions, lucky dips, gift vouchers and cash prizes galore. The memento for 2013 was a keychain with an embedded watch and the DSSP logo.

Dr. Huma Naz of GSK, (Glaxo Smith Kline) producers of the Cervical Cancer Vaccine, discussed the awareness of cervical cancer. This is the 2nd most common cancer in women and is caused by a viral (HumanPapillomavirus) infection. There are no symptoms in the early stages. Vaccination is the primary means of prevention and regular cervical screening i.e. the Pap Smear test. The dosage is an injection each at zero, one and six months. The vaccination does not exclude one from the Pap Smear test every three years.

Our 2nd speaker was the vibrant and lively trainer Ms. Arshi Ahmed Aziz of ITC (The Institute of Training and Consultancy). Her theme was, as the Congress’ “Standing High in Challenging Times”. Arshi spoke on many subjects that contribute to success. Perception / Attitude / Behaviour /Communication / Managing Time / Assumptions / Skills and Attributes. She gave several examples on each, accompanied by video clips. Everything depends on one’s attitude / behavior towards an event and their perception / assumption of it. If you are not able to communicate properly with your colleagues and superiors you might pass on the wrong message or misunderstand instructions. It’s important to choose your words with care and to speak at the right time. One can always work towards improving a skill or developing an attribute. Attaining success and proficiency is an ongoing process.

Both speakers were presented with token gifts from the DSSP. The talks were followed by a game of collecting 15 everyday use items. At 1.30 pm we broke for a sumptuous lunch at the Dumpukht Restaurant. The day closed with a round of tombola and a hot cup of tea.
Tea Meeting at Services Club - 26 January, 2013
The new Executive Committee of the DSSP had their first tea meeting on Sat. 26 January, 2013 at the Services Club. This was a new venue, chosen for its convenience and affordable rates. The event was the annual “Grumble Session” or “Shout Out”.

Maharukh Bhiladwala (MOK), the President opened the meeting, wishing all a happy and peaceful 2013! She briefed everyone on the 22nd ASA Congress scheduled to be held in Karachi next year tentatively from 14 September. As this is usually vacation time in the Far East, it would ensure maximum participation. The theme is STANDING HIGH IN CHALLENGING TIMES! Sub-Committees are required to handle Fund-Raising, Logistics, Entertainment, Publicity and the Choir. The DSSP asked for volunteers for these sub-committees.

Members then voiced their thoughts and ideas on the DSSP and the functions held to which MOK and the Executive Committee answered and a general discussion ensued. A game was played before tea and snacks were served by the Services Club. Natasha Mavalvala was the lucky winner correctly guessing 19 out of 20 logos. Members were happy with the venue and voted on the Club being used again. We closed for the evening at 6.00 pm.
DSSP 41st Anniversary Gala, 06th October 2012
The tradition carries on and members and their guests look forward to the Anniversary Gala Dinner hosted by DSSP every year !!!

This year the Gala was scheduled for October 06, 2012 at the Beach Luxury Hotel. However keeping in mind the prevailing situation in the city the committee decided to move the venue to Avari Towers. A week before the gala the President along with 3 other committee members reaches the Avari to finalise the venue. Before the gala the committee was busy with planning and finally execution of this event.

The day finally arrived and excitement could be felt in the air. We saw members and guests walk in elegantly dressed. The small but comfortable hall of Indus Suite bore a grandeur look, every banner displayed had good visibility.

The ever so competent Master of Ceremony MOK welcomed each one on behalf of the committee. And the program began. There were several prizes given away by lucky draw. Each one got a goody bag filled with products given by companies.

The DSSP special prizes were next to follow whereby each DSSP member was asked to pick up a lucky number and prizes were given out accordingly. Congratulations to Angela Fernandes who was the lucky winner of the big prize which consisted of a ticket to Bangkok, courtesy of Cathay Pacific.

That was followed by a group quiz game played at each table, all questions were related to the 80's and all could be seen painstakingly trying to solve the real challenging quiz devised by none other than MOK.

Last but not the least as all good things must come to an end we were finally bidding adieu to all while the committee members were busy wrapping off the numerous banners to the respective contributors.

Thank you to all the companies that continuously support DSSP at each anniversary gala!
DSSP Secretaries' Day 2012
The DSSP celebrated Secretaries' Day this year on Sunday, 22 April 2012, at the Beach Luxury Hotel, Karachi.

Ms. Dinaz Divecha was the guest speaker for the day. Dinaz, with her 18 years of experience in the field of corporate training, had compiled a very interesting, interactive session on "The Balancing Act". She emphasized how important it was to give time to ourselves and our needs.

She briefly touched the topic on time management, the need for effective delegation of work if one is in the leadership role, how to be assertive without being aggressive, how valuable Social networking can prove to be at work and for entertainment, how necessary it is for self-improvement all the time and awareness of what's happening around you. Dinaz ended her presentation with the thought that we should not forget to count our blessings and believe in ourselves as we are unique and special. President Cheryl Mathew, presented Dinaz with a token of appreciation for giving us her time on a Sunday afternoon.

There were some exciting fun games before and after lunch including a round of tambola. A tempting menu set up for Lunch was served and enjoyed by all, at the 007 restaurant.

The program was enjoyed by everyone. This would not be possible without the dedicated service of the executive committee. We take this opportunity to thank our sponsors for taking part in our Secretaries' Day function.
DSSP’s Women’s Day Tea-Meeting
International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated annually on 8th March. IWD was first declared in 1910 with the first IWD event held in 1911. 2011 sees 100 years of International Women's Day having been celebrated around the world.

To mark this event, a tea meeting was organized; the Principal of St. Joseph’s College for Women, Karachi, Prof. Dr. Bernadette L. Dean was invited to give a talk on the occasion. Dr Dean’s topic was apt for the occasion – Women’s Empowerment. Dr Dean shared with us the statistics of women in this subcontinent and stressed on the need for education of women and ways in which each one of us can contribute towards this cause.

The very interactive session was followed by a delectable Hi-Tea.
Glimpses of Events
Handing Over to the next Execucom & the Year-end Dinner – 26 Dec. 2014
AGM - 8 Nov. 2014
Bidding for the Auctioned items
KVTC
Playing Tombola
Eid/Independence Celebrations
Making up words.
The Red Table
Winners of the Jigsaw Puzzle.
Memorial for Lily Dastur
MOK with Dhun Dastur
Remembering Lily Dastur
Shahrazad Irani Reminiscencing
Secretaries' Day 2014
Take your seats, please, we're about to begin!
The Project Team Presentation
Working on the Quiz
Valentine Day / Basant at the KPI - 23 February 2014
At the Registration Desk
Preparing a Valentine Card
The winning bowlers
Lunch with Qatar Airways - 18 January 2014
Mr. Sherif Kamel with the QA team
Lyn Ann & Juliana
At the Marriott
Year-end Lunch at Al-Harmain
All Watching Intently
Answering Questions
AGM at Hotel Mehran
Hotel Mehran's lavish Hi-Tea
President & Treasurer
DSSP's AGM
EGM at the KPI - 25 August 2013
Attentive to the discussions at the EGM
KPI’s delicious Parsi cuisine at the EGM
Relaxing in the spaciousness of KPI
Leisure Day! 30 June, 2013
Enjoying the Pool
Leisure Day at the Farm House
The Secretaries relaxing
Secretaries Day 2013
Ex-Officio & Imm. Past President Cheryl Mathew presenting a token gift to Dr. Huma Naz of GSK
The winning team - Philippines
Hard at play
Hi-Tea in January
Listening to the programme for the year
Participating in the Discussions
President MOK with the winner Natasha Mavalvala
The 42nd DSSP Gala – A Night to Remember
Black & White
The Executive Committee
     
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