Advice and Support for South Africans Immigrating to New Zealand

South Africans Going To New Zealand

Author Topic: A letter to Nolan  (Read 4697 times)

Offline Sherelee

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #15 on: September 04, 2013, 10:29:00 pm »
 :'(

Okay, you've got me. I'm a newbie, a moderator on this site, a client of NSIS but not an employee, nor a licensed adviser  :clap:

I was trying to be helpful, tell a little of my experience, just basically be around. Oops!!

Offline Sherelee

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #16 on: September 04, 2013, 11:25:50 pm »
Hi dievissers,

I have sent an email through to an administrator (Nolan is unable to help at the moment as he is having trouble with his connection) to take you off the membership list today.  :(

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #16 on: September 04, 2013, 11:25:50 pm »

Offline Nolan

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2013, 01:25:56 am »
Hi guys

Thank you for the posts and telling us about your concerns. Without the feedback we won't know.

First I would like to tell you about my situation. As you know I have not really been around much for the past few years. This is due to my art business taking off so well that I am left with pretty much zero time for anything else. As a result the site has pretty much just been idling along during that time. I have not been able to grow the site like in the days before I left SA. You will agree with me that a site like this without somebody steering and growing it will gradually die. I didn't want this to happen to all our hard work, so I made the decision to find somebody that had the ability to take over from me.

I then redesigned the site to be fresh and modern again, plus easy to operate and manage for somebody else. I then chatted to many people who I felt would be a good match for the site. I eventually decided on the guys at the South African Magazine. This decision was not taken lightly. We had many hours of discussions before the decision was made. I needed to be sure that they matched my criteria 100% :

1) They had to be ex-Saffers
2) They had to have the ability to grow the site
3) They had to have the connections to continue to assists the guys coming over
4) They had to be independant

The South African Magazine has this and more. They are able to help those coming over and those that are already here more than I was ever able to.

They have the connections built up through running The South African Magazine for years. They arrange meetups for newly arrived immigrants every month in order to help them settle in. They arrange meetups every month for ex-Saffers who are starting up and running  businesses here. Plus they are associated with North Shore Immigration Services.

This association for me was BIG plus and not a minus because:

1) When the Immigration Advisers Law came out we lost a TON of info on the site along with our ability to chat about these issues / ask questions about our immigration processes. With Simona at NSIS being a licensed immigration adviser that has allowed SA GT NZ to be less strict when it comes to what questions are allowed and not allowed on the site. It has also removed the proverbial axe that has been hanging over the site's head since the law came out. The site can now not be shut down by the IAA.
2) Not everybody can or wants to do their own immigration application. There are however still many fake / cheating immigration advisers out there, despite the law change. Carte Blanche featured one of these companies a few weeks ago. Now our members that do want to use an agent know they can safely use NSIS and trust them to not run away with their money.

It is however important to realise that The South African Magazine is not licensed to give immigration advice, so Sherelee is not able to give out immigration advice herself. So as far as everybody's ability to give that advice, nothing has changed on the site. That is why Sherelee directs those questions to the correct people that are allowed to provide that advice.

The site and the forum has and will remain a place where anybody can discuss issues and help folks independantly. The site does however have bills to pay in order to keep the site up. Up to this point I have been paying these bills out of my own pocket, in my personal capacity, plus taken on advertisers on the site. In the past some of these advertisers have been immigration agents. NSIS are an advertiser on the site, nothing more, nothing less. They have however given the site the ability to start bringing back a lot of the info we lost because of the IAA law.

NSIS are in the process of setting up free immigration video seminars on the site that will answer the questions we are not allowed to ask or answer here. Putting these seminars together, filming then editing them however takes a lot of time, so it will still be a while before they are added to the site. In the past if somebody asked an immigration question I have simply deleted the post. Sherelee has at least been able to say "contact XYZ". Soon Sherelee will not have to do that anymore, she will simply say "go take a look at the free seminar on the site". But until those seminars are available there is nothing much she can do.

Take a look at what has changed since the beginning of the year:

1) The site has a nice new look which finally works on all devices. Things are now easier to find on the site.
2) Sherelee has added a lot of new info to the site, including the back issues of The South African Magazine. These will be very valuable to those on their way as they can now get a feel for what the SA community in NZ has been and is up to.
3) There are now monthly meetups - when last did we have one of those on the site?
4) The popular Ask an Agent service which we lost with the law change is back. This used to help heaps of folks that were doing their own immigration applications, but were stuck. Now, as it was then, for a small fee Simona will help them.
5) The site now has active moderators on the site again, helping out on a daily basis. Something that has been missing for 5 years.

Don't you agree that these changes have already made a big difference to the site? I think they have made SA GT NZ a better place already.

We do however need to be patient though as the new team learn the ropes of running a large site like this. They have never done anything like this before. Sherelee was even too scared to make a post in the beginning. She is however a quick learner and is quickly building up the confidence to help more and more.

Are there going to be teething problems as they go along, of course there are. Will they make mistakes along the way? Of course they will - I made many mistakes while learning how to build this community. Some changes I made and features I added were less popular than others. The same will happen in the future. What is important is to provide the feedback to Sherelee, Peter and Simona so that they know what you want and what they can do to keep making the site better. Now that you have active operators of the site, you have that ability again.

They are VERY passionate about helping fellow Saffers get here and settle in, just like you and I are. They however have the ability to do that better than anybody else. Give the guys a gap to settle into running the site and to find their feet, you will be glad you did

In the meantime continue to help those that are still on their way here, they need your help, just as much as you needed the help those days. O0

If however you do still feel that you want your account deleted PM me and I will do so. I will also remove all your posts if you want. I would however be very disappointed if I do get any PM's  :-\

Offline 2GatJakkals

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2013, 04:11:40 am »
I think the changes are for the good, the way Nolan explained it.

I remember my own frustration at not being able to ask immigration related questions here.

But I still don't think negative comments should be deleted, or that anybody should be denied the opportunity to edit or delete their own posts if they so wish.
EOI selected Sept 2011, ITA received Oct 2011, ITA submitted 23 Feb 2012.
Job offer received 10 Apr 2012, Applied for WP 16 Apr 2012, WP issued 24 May 2012, Wife started working in Wellington 1 June 2012.
PR approved 18 July 2012, House in Pretoria sold Oct 2012, Arrived in NZ 1 Dec 2012

Offline vulpes

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2013, 07:11:37 am »
2gatjakkals, you still can't ask immigration questions on the forum.

What you can do, is contact Peter Jepwood by filling out a form for a free evaluation....

23/08/2010 EOI Submitted
25/08/2010 EOI Selected
10/09/2010 EOI Selection Rescinded
23/05/2010 EOI Re Selected
06/06/2011 ITA Received
27/11/2011 ITA Submitted
10/12/2011 ITA Rejected
16/03/2012 ITA ReSubmitted
11/05/2012 CO Assigned
14/09/2012 Phone Interview
26/10/2012 PR Approved
15/02/2013 In NZ

Offline yusuf

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2013, 10:02:11 am »
The way I see it, the information on the site will get outdated over time if all enquiries are taken off the site (emails to Peter directly). Once that happens, the forum will eventually die. I hope it doesn't happen, but how long could it possibly last without members contributions?

NSIS folk, I suggest you keep the conversations going here. Give your views on the forum rather than off the forum. In the long term it will pay off, but if you're going to look for quick gains, my opinion is that it will come at the cost of the traffic to this forum.

Good luck with whatever you decide.
DIY Residence Application - Roughly 18 months
Arrived in Wellington with Residence - 1st May 2013
Relocated to Auckland - 24th May 2015
PR Approved - 19th Nov 2015

Offline TheJo

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2013, 12:04:54 pm »
2gatjakkals, you still can't ask immigration questions on the forum.

What you can do, is contact Peter Jepwood by filling out a form for a free evaluation....


:2funny:

I'm also a newbie and I remember the day I logged onto the forum and saw all the new administrator posts about licenced advisors and filling out forms. I got the same feeling I do when I've filled in an online form and gotten an error message that some field is compulsory or incorrect. Not a nice feeling.

:'(

Okay, you've got me. I'm a newbie, a moderator on this site, a client of NSIS but not an employee, nor a licensed adviser  :clap:

I was trying to be helpful, tell a little of my experience, just basically be around. Oops!!

That's nice of you, but honestly, you could've fooled me. I think it's fantastic that you want to share your experience - that is what the forum is for. If I could suggest not directing almost everybody to NSIS because being their client was your experience. Rather update your personal profile or your signature to inform everybody that you personally recommend NSIS and leave it at that. Then your forum contributions can be more natural, on-topic, and about real and personal experiences that do not shout ADVERTISEMENT.

In my experience this is the best NZ forum and I would hate for it to go downhill.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2013, 01:16:59 pm by TheJo »
11 Feb 15: Residence visa approved

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2013, 12:04:54 pm »

Offline mbl77

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #22 on: September 06, 2013, 06:27:33 am »
Is there any way for me to delete my profile?

Offline zatexnz

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #23 on: September 06, 2013, 07:40:55 am »
Thanks to Nolan for taking the time to type such a lengthy reply. 

It's better to have somebody whom people CAN ask rather than, as Nolan had to do, take such questions totally off. 

May I make a suggestion? 
Allow people to ask the questions.  People can post their personal experiences.  But let Simona, who apparently IS the qualified person to answer such questions, then answer them.  If it's a simple question, then it should be able to receive a simple answer.  If the situation seems more complex, then Simona can say that she is happy to help them, as a client.  Sherelee, can I ask that instead of putting the whole shpiel on each posting of "contacting Peter and give him your full and honest info", you can simply say something like, "Newbie123, this question seems to be one that needs to be answered by a certified advisor, please pm me if you're in need of one."  Or you can even pm the person.

Guys, this forum is FOR us, BY us.  WE the members are what make it work.  If we all leave in a huffy then yes, it will die.  WE can continue to make it a forum where people can come and make friends, network, ask questions, and feel at home.  I had not been on this site for quite a while myself, and after "coming back" also saw the posts that seemed to be advertising.  I could have got all in a twist about it too... but I chose to think it through.  Being the oldest member here (save Nolan who created this forum), I knew the road we've had to take, and I know the troubles Nolan went through to make sure it stayed alive after the laws had changed.  I thought... great, we now have an advisor on board.  Now we should be free to post and let the advisor give the correct info.  I'm hoping we can still do this.  Let's pull together and MAKE it work!  Perhaps we can put our thinking caps on and see if we can come up with a solution.  Because the bottom line is, that we are not allowed to publicly "give immigration advice", if this site is not licensed to.
lekker sweet as, y'all
~ Colleen

Offline TheJo

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #24 on: September 06, 2013, 09:27:08 am »
+1 zatexnz

Thank you for that perspective about US making it work. As the site's first member I'm sure you've seen lots of changes happening here.

A well-balanced post.
11 Feb 15: Residence visa approved

Offline Chan in Wellington

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #25 on: September 06, 2013, 10:42:32 am »
Eish...not convinced.  Curiosity will see what happens.
'The only difference between a rut and a grave, is the depth'.

Offline Sherelee

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #26 on: September 08, 2013, 10:27:40 pm »
Hi zatexnz  :1hug:

Thanks very much for your advice and I will certainly be applying that should the licensed adviser not be on site. As soon as I have picked up my self confidence (which was slammed to the ground by a certain few over the past week or so) I'll be back in the saddle imparting some riveting information on the website about New Zealand and the reason why I love it here.

Thanks again  :coffee:

SA Going to NZ Advice Forum

Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #26 on: September 08, 2013, 10:27:40 pm »

Offline addywads

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #27 on: September 10, 2013, 06:20:13 am »
Mmmm, also been debating whether to leave or not........not liking the new arrangement much at all and also stay out of curiosity......
Life is too short for regrets.

Offline yusuf

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #28 on: September 10, 2013, 09:48:30 am »
There seems to be an improvement these last few days. Well done to those that are trying.
DIY Residence Application - Roughly 18 months
Arrived in Wellington with Residence - 1st May 2013
Relocated to Auckland - 24th May 2015
PR Approved - 19th Nov 2015

Offline mbl77

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Re: A letter to Nolan
« Reply #29 on: September 10, 2013, 12:41:34 pm »
There seems to be an improvement these last few days. Well done to those that are trying.

Agreed. I hope it continues and I will stick around.