Apex together building stronger Global Communities
On Saturday 15th March 2008 another watershed chapter in Apex History was created. At a Café at the Ibis Hotel in Wollongong, Australia, the heads (or their representatives) of the Apex Associations of the World came together and agreed to form a new Apex alliance. Apex Global was born. Many might remember an older international entity called Apex International – it wa
s tried and failed – purely because of the problems that all humanity has – politics and money. That there were current Apexians in Australia and bey
ond who strongly believed in the importance of our International Relations and the need for a united Apex is testament to the current breed of Apex leaders who had the ability to see the bigger picture.
Apex Global has eradicated politics and money from the principles and now exists as an entity that relies on each other for support without politics or money (fees) to influence decisions.
Apex Associations – Australia, Bangladesh, Malaysia, India,Fiji, Singapore and Philippines have all agreed to the formation, growth and development of Apex in the Asia Pacific region and beyond. In 2016 National Convention Two Country Add in this Association. They are Srilanka and Indonesia. As a united group or entity we have a far greater ability to create awareness and expansion in our region. Each Association remains a stand alone single unit, whilst being a member partner of a wider Apex family.
The idea for the formation of Apex Global stemmed from an Apex Associations meeting in Malacca, Malaysia in 2006. At that meeting it was agreed by all present (Apex Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Bangladesh and Philippines) that a united Apex entity was needed. Past Apex Australia National President Bryan Whitehorn (who was ASPAC Chairman at the time) was chartered the responsibility of researching, developing and if possible implementing the Memorandum of Understanding for Apex Global.
The formation of Apex Global is something that occurred to better the Apex family. It was not formed to take the place of the individual Apex Associations. All Associations at the meeting in March had their say about what needed to occur to build the idea of Apex Global. It was clearly understood that this was NOT Apex International reinvented. Apex International failed because of politics and because of the reliance of most Associations on Apex Australia to fund the entity. This created an imbalance that could never survive.
By creating an entity that does not rely on money or politics- it gives a greater opportunity for growth and development.
Apex Global will allow the various Apex Associations to sit as equals around a table twice a year and to plan as equals for the development of Apex in our region. It will ensure that each Association has a fair say. Each Association will be able to give ideas to follow up on and promote projects that all of the Associations can become involved in.
These are all questions that will be addressed, asked and hopefully answered by the new Apex Global entity where all ideas will be tabled – and hopefully a new course chartered and steered.
It will be up to the new Apex Global Group Committee to take this new Apex entity and work it towards what we want to achieve. There is still much to be done – but this new united entity gives hope for a promising future.
In the beginning…
November 1930 was a tough time. The First World War was not long ended and there had been an expectation of a period of peace and prosperity to follow what had been portrayed as ‘The Great War’. It was not to be.
The world suffered as one, with high levels of unemployment, general malaise and recession in the business sector, and a generally depressed state in the minds and lives of all of the peoples of the world. This was the Great Depression.
History now records that three young men – all architects from Geelong in Victoria – decided to provide an outlet for the expression of positive community values, by bringing together members of the region in the common purpose of maintaining morale during tough times. And so – Apex was formed.
Langham Proud, Ewen Laird and John Buchan believed that “a man, basing his life on worthwhile citizenship, rises through service and fellowship to the apex of his ambition.” Through the years, and across the Apex nations of the world, this has been the value that countless members have come to realise.
From the very start, the Apex Club of Geelong limited its own ‘territory’ to “within radius of four (4) miles from the Geelong Post Office” and therefore sought to assist with the formation of clubs with similar Ideals across the District, the nation and the world. From inception, Apex had no boundaries. Wherever in the world there was a need for good people to do good things – so there was an opportunity for Apex to prosper.
In 1948, the Apex colours of red, yellow and blue were added to the logo. These are the primary colours, from which all other colours of the rainbow are made. This symbolically meant that Apex was for all people, and that nation, race and creed simply meant more opportunities for us all to learn from each other.
In December 1931, John Buchan established contact with ‘20 – 30 Clubs’ of America and in 1933, while working in London, Ewen Laird became a member of Round Table. This was a clear demonstration that the Founders always believed that Apex could have an international influence. By 1956, there were 30 clubs in a range of nations, all working within the Apex Ideals.
Apex Global reminds us that we make a positive difference in the lives of millions of people, in nations across the globe. But the single biggest success we have, is that good people, doing good works, can still achieve the “apex of their ambition”.
Langham, Ewen and John would be proud.
By Mark Fishwick PNP Apex Australia
I am one of the lucky ones. In 1995, I had the experience of meeting with our Founder Sir John Buchan and hearing of his vision for Apex.
Apex operates within four Ideals. None is more important than the other, but Sir John spent time explaining why “To promote international understanding and friendship” was vital to our positive future. Sir John enthused about the benefit of Apex to everyone who embraced its Ideals, and particularly in the area of personal growth and development of character. Sir John explained that through Apex, members gain confidence, learn greater tolerance and understanding, and develop a greater sense of responsibility to their fellow man.
Sir John explained that, from the moment that the Apex Club of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, was formed (the first Club outside of Australia), Apex had truly started to meet its potential. As expansion continued through the 1960s and 1970s, and Apexians from around the world shared ideas and experiences, we all benefitted from each other’s strengths and knowledge.
Sir John talked with passion about the reasons for the Founders Fund. His dream for the Founders Fund was for it to provide an opportunity for Apexians from other Apex nations to visit Australia and for Australian Apexians to visit other Associations, with the aim of all Apexians learning from each other. Sir John spoke very strongly and sternly about the need for experienced Apexians to listen to the new generation, to accept their ideas, and to embrace equality in all who proudly wear our badge and identify with the Ideals of Apex.
I think Sir John Buchan, Langham Proud and Ewen Laird would be proud of Apex Global and what we are seeking to achieve. While they saw a need for Apex to maintain a relationship with other service organisations around the world, they extolled the need for Apex Associations to work with single purpose to make the globe a better place for its people.
I am reminded of the story of the old man standing on the beach, in the middle of a pile of thousands and thousands of starfish that have washed up in a severe storm. As the starfish were dying in the hot sun, the old man was reaching down and slowly throwing them back into the sea. A young boy walking past saw what the old man was doing and stood shaking his head. “What are you doing, you silly old man?” said the boy. “There are thousands of starfish on the beach. You throwing a few back won’t make any difference.”
As the old man reached down, he picked a starfish up and threw it back into the ocean. “I just made a difference to that one” he said.
If we are to live up to the expectations of the Founders, and meet the Fourth Ideal, we should all seek ways in which we can work together. We have bursary schemes, work parties, funded projects and Mass Tours to link us, but through Apex Global we now have the opportunity to do more. We can’t fix all of the world’s problems, but we can change some people’s lives for the better. We owe it to ourselves, to those who came before, and those who will follow.