foundation donates close to half million to hospital
The Clinton Public Hospital Foundation (CPHF) transferred more to Clinton Public Hospital this year than in any other single fiscal year in the past two decades. A cheque presentation was held recently from l-r are: Steve Brown, CPHF treasurer; Finance and Investment chair; Laura Brown CPH manager of Emergency Department and Inpatient Care Unit; Sibyl Tebbutt, CPHF director; Darren Stevenson, CPHF chair; Mary Cardinal, Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance Vice-president, People and Chief Quality executive; Anne Newington and Bob Clark, both CPHF directors; Linda Dunford, CPHF Nominating and Bylaw chair; Jane Muegge, Fred Lobb and Sandra Campbell, all CPHF directors. (Submitted photo)
On March 27, the Clinton Public Hospital Foundation (CPHF) completed the final payments of an annual transfer of $466,876.66 to the Clinton Public Hospital in support of various current projects.
“This is an exciting year for the Foundation, as we are transferring more to our hospital this year than in any other single fiscal year in the past two decades,” said Darlene McCowan, CPHF Coordinator. “Over the past 15 years, the Foundation has been able to transfer more than three million dollars to the hospital for a variety of projects, including new equipment, physician recruitment and updates to the infrastructure of the hospital. On behalf of the Clinton Public Hospital Foundation Board of Directors, I would like to thank all those who support our hospital through financial donations, Planned Giving, gift in kind donations, sponsorships and in volunteering their time and talents. We are truly grateful to have such a kind and caring community.”
This year the disbursement to the hospital supports a wide variety of projects.
Approximately $15,000 of this transfer was raised by the Auxiliary to the Clinton Public Hospital, which allowed for the purchase of two vitals monitors, a rehab trainer, a trauma stretcher, five patient wheelchairs and one bariatric wheelchair. The Auxiliary fundraises throughout the year with events such as their annual Irish Stew Luncheon, Game Days, Tag Days, Hot Dog Days, Penny Sale, Celebration of Lights, 50/50 Raffle and of course through the sales in the Hospital Gift Shop. The public support of these activities is always appreciated.
CPHF fundraising events, including the 2018 biennial Gala, the CKNX Healthcare Heroes Radiothon, Giving Tuesday and the Christmas Campaign, raised a net profit of $252,772.21 this fiscal year. Additional funds were raised through a variety of community supported events, memorial and general donations, tribute gifts, the thankful patient program and planned giving. The funds raised throughout the year have been transferred to support the recruitment of new physicians, the purchase of sterilization equipment for the operating room, the purchase of a digital x-ray unit, the purchase of a patient lift, funding for a nursing education program and financial support for the PATH (Partners Advancing Technology in Healthcare) Project
Legion donates funds to hospital
The President of The Royal Canadian Legion Branch #140, Doug Stewart (far right) recently presented the Clinton Public Hospital Foundation (CPHF) with a cheque in the amount of $4,495 for the purchase of the Sit/Stand Lift. Accepting the cheque were (l-r): Sibyl Tebbutt, CPHF director; Laura Brown, CPH manager of Inpatient Care and Emergency Department; Mary Cardinal, Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance Vice-president, People and Chief Quality executive; and Darren Stevenson CPHF chair. (Submitted photo)
The Royal Canadian Legion, Ontario Provincial Command Branches and Ladies’ Auxiliaries Charitable Foundation accept applications for their equipment grant in April of each year. These applications are reviewed and organizations are eligible to receive funds for approved projects for two out of every three years. The Clinton Public Hospital Foundation (CPHF) applies for this grant on a regular basis and is very grateful to have received the grant several times.
In 2018, the CPHF, with the assistance of Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance’s recommendation for capital equipment required, submitted a grant application for funding for a new Sit/Stand Lift for the hospital. In November, the CPHF received notification that their grant proposal had been approved and that the funding was available to proceed with the purchase of this equipment.
On Apr. 12, the President of The Royal Canadian Legion Branch #140, Doug Stewart presented the CPHF with a cheque in the amount of $4,495 for the purchase of the Sit/Stand Lift. The CPHF Board of Directors and Staff would like to express their sincere gratitude to The Royal Canadian Legion for their generosity with this grant opportunity and their continued support of the Clinton Public Hospital.
Province cuts flood management by 50 per cent
Ontario’s 36 conservation authorities, including Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA), will receive roughly half as much provincial money to deliver flood management programs after a cut of almost 50 per cent to provincial transfer payments in the 2019 Ontario Budget.
“The impacts of these reductions will vary from conservation authority to conservation authority,” said Kim Gavine, General manager of Conservation Ontario.
The cuts “will all be felt immediately, particularly in smaller and more rural conservation authorities,” she said.
ABCA will continue to deliver flood plain management, planning and regulations, and flood forecasting and warning programs but the local, rural conservation authority will have to find a way to deliver those programs with close to half as much provincial funding. The ABCA was expecting $113,000 in transfer payments in 2019-2020 but the local conservation authority will now receive about half of that ($58,000).
“It will be a challenge to deliver the same level of service with less funding but we have a legislated responsibility to protect life and property and we will do the best job we can with the resources we have available,” said ABCA General Manager and Secretary-Treasurer, Brian Horner. “The funding cuts will be difficult and make it harder for us to deliver these important programs in the way they should be delivered. We will take a close look at the programs and develop a strategy for how to adapt to these changes in provincial funding.”
Conservation authority programs save lives, according to Conservation Ontario. These programs prevent flooding, provide flood forecasting and flood messages to municipalities, prevent millions of dollars in flood damages to property, and ensure there is a protected supply of clean water for people and for industry.
The Province of Ontario provided $7.4 million annually in provincial funding transfer payments to 36 conservation authorities in Ontario, for flood management related programs, prior to the funding reduction. This funding supported natural hazards work (flooding and erosion); and $5 million in matching funds to address flood infrastructure (dams, dykes, etc.) issues.
Conservation authorities in Ontario protect life and property through a number of programs. They include:
- Forecast flooding and issue flood messages (including flood watches and flood warnings)
- Monitor streamflow, rainfall and snowpack
- Update flood plain mapping
- Manage and operate $2.7 billion in flood infrastructure such as dams and dykes
- Provide planning support and advice to the Province of Ontario, municipalities, and the federal government to minimize flood impacts
- Regulate prohibited development and other activities for impacts to the control of flooding and other natural hazards
- Contribute to municipal emergency planning and preparedness activities as well as recovery activities
- Inform and educate the public about flooding
- Protect, restore and rehabilitate natural cover – reducing the impacts of flooding
Huronview Demo Farm to invest in field drainage
Project partners gathered for the ground breaking at the Huronview Demonstration Farm recently from l-r are: Gord Mitchell Huron Soil and Crop Improvement Association (HSCIA); Chad McCallum, KMM Drainage; Elizabeth Balfour Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA); Rick Kootstra, HSCIA; Bob Meiners, AGREM; Mari Veliz, ABCA; Jeremy Meiners, AGREM; and Melisa Luymes, HSCIA. (Submitted photo)
The public is welcome to stop by one of Ontario’s most innovative field drainage sites as it is being installed on June 15 at the Huronview Demonstration Farm, near Clinton.
The event will include live installation, wagon rides, workshops, food trucks and a trade show. The field is located behind the Huronview complex at 77722 London Road, Clinton, and all are welcome to drop in between 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Admission will be $5 per person.
The event is being run by the Huron Soil and Crop Improvement Association (HSCIA), which is a volunteer board of farmers that are passionate about improving soil and water quality. HSCIA has a fifteen-year agreement with the County of Huron to farm on the 47-acre Huronview Demo Farm field with cover crops, no-till, and best practices.
“We knew we needed to invest in field drainage there in order to control erosion and we took this opportunity to try the most innovative system out there,” said Doug Walker, president of HSCIA. “And by partnering with Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA), we’re able to use it for research.”
“It is an unprecedented partnership,” said Melisa Luymes, Project coordinator. “We’re bringing agricultural, drainage, and environmental stakeholders together to innovate and research for water quality. The project is made possible with Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP) funding from the federal and provincial governments, along with Huron County’s support.”
Drainage is essential for farming, but it needs to be designed well to reduce the potential for impacts downstream, according to Luymes.
“Essentially, we’re trying to ‘shut off’ drainage systems with underground control gates at certain times of the year,” she said. “It works on flat fields in Ontario, but the key to making it work on a slope is that lateral tiles need to be installed on contour at a very precise grade. Conventional tile lines usually run straight, but these will curve around the field. It should be really interesting to see.”
This is the first time in Ontario that controlled drainage will be tried on a slope, according to Luymes. An Illinois-based drainage design company, AGREM, made the plans for the site and the designers, Jeremy and Bob Meiners, will be presenting their work on June 15 as well.
The site will feature a side-by-side-by-side plot of contoured/controlled drainage, conventional drainage, and an area that will remain undrained. Water quality and quantity will be measured, along with yield and soil data. The site also features a research plot comparing 15-foot vs 30-foot tile spacing and a demonstration of surface drainage with terraces and a grassed waterway.
Farmers, drainage contractors, and the public are invited to attend the field day. There will be wagon rides to take visitors through the field sites to learn about contoured and controlled drainage, wetlands, water quality, terraces and soil health.
The project is being funded and supported by over a dozen partners so far, including the Huron County Clean Water Project, the Land Improvement Contractors of Ontario (LICO), Ducks Unlimited Canada, and ABCA along with four local drainage contractors and three tile manufacturers. This project is also funded in part through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), a federal-provincial-territorial initiative. The Agricultural Adaptation Council assists in the delivery of the Partnership in Ontario.
To find out more visit www.huronview.net.
Garlic Mustard Removal a community event
The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) invites local residents to connect with neighbors and help remove invasive plant species at two Invasive Species Removal events on Saturday, May 25.
Members of the public are invited to join other volunteers at either Clinton Conservation Area, 77690 London Road, Clinton, from 10 a.m. to noon, or at the MacNaughton Park Pavilion, 56 Hill Street, Exeter, from 2-4 p.m.
“We will be focusing on Garlic Mustard removal,” said Nina Sampson, Conservation educator. “Once the weeds are removed the native plants have room to grow, display their beauty, and do their work providing food and shelter for wildlife.”
Invasive species are plants that are not native to the area. They out-compete native species and often spread quickly. Removing invasive species is important because they can choke out native plants, introduce disease, or crossbreed with native species and impact wildlife, according to Sampson.
No experience is necessary to take part in the Invasive Species Removal events and staff from ABCA will provide all equipment. The events are entirely outdoors so those taking part should dress for the weather and wear long pants and boots if possible. Those taking part will have a chance to learn how to identify Garlic Mustard, learn about its growth habits, and get their hands dirty, removing this invasive plant. Those who are interested in volunteering are asked to come ready to dig. Students are encouraged to participate to earn their community volunteer hours.
To learn more about the events and about protecting our communities from invasive plant species, visit https://www.abca.ca
encaustic and stained glass art featured at Toast the Coast
Linda Wiebe (Submitted photos)
There are 3,888 KMs of Huron coastline in Canada, and the Lake Huron Centre for Coastal Conservation (LHCCC) cares for them all. Volunteers monitor and report findings weekly, constructing a database which is interpreted by the experts and shared with the people – citizens, students, governments, corporate leaders – to promote Best Practice for the future of Huron.
It’s a lot of work, and it’s worth it. The integral role of our Great Lake to all of life cannot be overstated. And so, it’s time to say thank-you.
LHCCC Executive Director Erinn Lawrie imagined an artistic tribute but didn’t know whom to approach. Bethany Ann Davidson, who grew up in Blind River, ON along the North Channel of Lake Huron and now dwells in Goderich, was facing the opposite problem: lacking the time and place, she had a dozen fellow artists eager to form a coastal-themed exhibition. It was the natural progression of Davidson’s broken-glass wave art she’d been designing to support the LHCCC through WorldRooted: the Art Project for People.
Artists Linda Wiebe gathers found objects to incorporate into her work.
The result is “Toast the Coast” an evening of art, science, cocktails and jazz at Beach Street Station in Goderich on Saturday, May 4.
Linda Wiebe and Brigitte Wolf are joining ten other “WorldRooted” artists in telling of their connection to the coast.
“The Great Lake Huron
welcomes us into her
ebb and flow.
She whispers to us
a multitude of possibilities.
We are connected.
Over half of our body is made up of water.
And so we are easily carried into her rhythm,
opening us to all that is.” – Linda Wiebe
Wiebe is a visual artist living in Goderich. Many who have been to the town have also been inside Wiebe’s creations, for her artwork forms the signature imagery of the annual Celtic Roots Festival, fourth-largest of its kind in the world. Indeed, many a favorite t-shirt boasts here colorful, nature-inspired designs.
Wiebe follows the movements and rhythms of nature, and her passion is to help others find them as well. Her work as an art instructor facilitates the shaping of mixed materials into intuitive forms that speak from a place that, often times, a budding artist didn’t know existed.
In her studio currently, Wiebe is creating images in mixed media combined with encaustic paint – a blend of beeswax, resin and pigment – in the colors of Lake Huron. These form the settings for assemblages of found objects that have been carried on the water to the shore. This is her response to a call from WorldRooted: the Art Project for People to share her visual stories in support of the Lake Huron Centre for Coastal Conservation.
While Wiebe’s expression is unconfined and spontaneous, the work of her contemporary, Brigitte Wolf, follows a procedural plan with sharp guidelines. Wolf is a stained-glass artist.
Like Wiebe, Wolf tends to favor personal pronouns when referring to the inland sea known as Lake Huron. She speaks fondly of days spent on the coast with her children, of years spent hiking along the waterways that lead there. Time spent in nature is an essential luxury to Wolf – the best way she knows to refresh and recharge.
Wolf learned glasswork 25 years ago after the example of her life partner and has since mastered the meticulous planning, measuring, sandblasting, cutting and fitting demanded by the art. Her completed works allow the light to shine through – and that is when unplanned elements are finally allowed to take creative control.
An example of Brigitte Wolf's stained glass.
Like the light, Lake Huron’s coast is a changing beauty. As water temperature climbs (by one degree per decade since 1970) and human activity reduces natural landcover (resting at 20 per cent in Wiebe and Wolf's home of Huron County), the shape of water-meets-land shifts in a telltale way. Warmer waters are coursing through the system more quickly than ever – think, for instance, that every felled tree once drank 200 L of water per year and its roots could hold up an embankment – it’s no wonder so much change can be observed in one lifetime.
Wiebe and Wolf are joining ten other WorldRooted artists in telling of their connection to the coast. They’ll be showing their works at “Toast the Coast” a celebration of those who work to document and preserve this invaluable zone of multiple ecosystems. Twenty-five per cent of art sales will benefit the LHCCC. Follow their progress at #carriedtothecoast. Tickets available now at www.lakehuron.ca/toast.
Earth Day Litter Walk enthusiastically received
PHOTOS BY JACK PAL
The Fifth Annual Earth Day Litter Walk, sponsored by the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA), was held on Monday afternoon, Apr. 22.
Organizers noted they had great weather on Earth Day with good participation and enthusiasm from the residents and visitors and they would like to thank all who pitched in.
Two pickup truck loads of garbage was collected from village routes.
BRVTA volunteer, Helen Varekamp (in green) helped others determine village routes to take on the Litter Walk held on Earth Day.
Helen Varekamp (left) and Pat Pal (right) prepare trash bags for participants.
Doug Brown (black cap) examines the routes for the Litter Walk while others prepare to head out from the coordinating location in Clan Gregor Square.
livery film series
The final film in The Livery Film Series is a Scottish delight titled, “Wild Rose” and it will be shown on Thursday, Apr. 25 at the Park Theatre in Goderich.
“Fresh as a Scottish summer evening”, this film is sure to have audience members humming as they leave the theatre. The movie begins at 7 p.m.
The Livery Film Series is organized by a small group of volunteers working as a sub-committee of The Livery Theatre in Goderich. The group subscribes to the regional extension program (Film Circuit) of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) to offer one film per month on a not-for-profit basis.
Huron Harp School
“Song of Strings” will be presented by the members of the Huron Harp School on Apr. 26.
This evening of lively Celtic music, lyrical song, dance, pipes, fiddles and a plethora of harps will be held at Lakeshore United Church starting at 7 p.m.
Tickets are $15 with admission at the door. Refreshments will be served following the performance.
Plant Sale and Walk
The John Hindmarsh Environmental Trust Fund and the Maitland Trail Association will benefit from and host a Plant Sale and Spring Walk on May 5.
The Plant Sale will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Plants for all gardens will be available: perennials, sun loving varieties as well as shade-tolerant, native species and herbs. There is also a limited amount of bagged compost available, be advised this often sells out early. The sale will be held in the Columbus Hall parking lot.
In addition to the Plant Sale a free, guided “Jane’s Walk” will be held in the Maitland Woods at 1 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. leaving from the Columbus Hall parking lot. The walk is open to all ages and participants should dress for the weather.
Jane’s Walk is an annual festival of free, citizen-led walking conversations inspired by Jane Jacobs held on the first weekend of May every year.
Connected rural communities
The Connected Rural Communities Collaborative (CRCC) is seeking input from the public about their experiences with social isolation. The CRCC received a $75,000 Ontario Trillium Foundation grant to work on reducing social isolation and strengthen social inclusion, one of the determinants of health.
The Provincial Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams stated in his recent annual report to the Ontario government, “Being socially connected to family, friends and our communities — having a sense of belonging — is important to our wellbeing. People who are connected are happier. They enjoy better health and use fewer health services. They are more resilient in the face of adversity and they live longer.”
The CRCC has developed a survey to learn about people’s sense of belonging and social inclusion, connection to their community, the programs and services they need and want, and the barriers that prevent them from feeling included. The survey can be taken online at www.gbachc.ca/connected-rural-communities. The CRCC is hoping to collect 500 surveys from respondents in the municipalities of Lambton Shores, South Huron, Bluewater and North Middlesex.
In-person interviews will also help to find out more about people’s stories and how to improve connections and inclusion in this area. People experiencing social isolation are encouraged to contact Matthew Maynard, Community developer, at email@example.com or call him at 519 262-3459 Ext. 213 to schedule an interview. Each person interviewed will receive a $25 grocery gift card for their time.
A comprehensive list of existing programs, services and activities is being collected and mapped to the area. This asset list will help to determine if there are gaps in opportunities for people to feel included in their community. The CRCC would like to hear from everyone who offers a program, service or activity to the public. Go to www.gbachc.ca/connected-rural-communites and click on the “Add My Service to the Community Asset Map” button.
In the fall of 2019, Matthew Maynard, will facilitate community gatherings to present the findings of the surveys, interviews and asset mapping work. Together with the community, decisions can then be made about what is needed to reduce social isolation, strengthen social inclusion and improve the health outcomes for people living in the area.
The CRCC) is a group of people and organisations working together in the municipalities of Lambton Shores, South Huron, Bluewater and North Middlesex. The collaborative includes municipalities, churches, health services, environmental organizations and social services, all working together to build better communities.
Blyth Veterinary Services, in partnership with the Huron County Health Unit, is hosting low-cost rabies vaccination clinics at two different locations this spring.
Clinics will take place at Blyth Veterinary Services’ 234 Queen St. location on Friday, Apr. 26 from 1-4 p.m. and Saturday, Apr. 27 from 9 a.m. to noon.
Another clinic will be held at St. Helen’s Community Hall on Friday, May 10 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
No appointment is needed for any of the clinics.
The cost to vaccinate your dog or cat against rabies is $30, cash only. Please bring dogs on leashes and cats in carriers.
Rabies is a disease caused by a virus that attacks the central nervous system of animals. Rabies spreads from infected animals to people or other animals by saliva. Cats, dogs and people may become infected with rabies when bitten by a rabid animal or when a rabid animal’s saliva comes into contact with broken skin or moist tissues of the mouth, nose or eyes.
Once symptoms appear, rabies is almost always fatal in animals and humans. The best way to protect your pet and your family is to have your pet vaccinated.
Make sure that all dogs and cats, including those in the barn, are vaccinated against rabies. Pet owners are required by law (Regulation 567/90) to have all cats and dogs three months of age or over immunized against rabies. Failure to provide proof of vaccination to a Public Health Inspector investigating a biting incident may result in a charge being laid and a fine of up to $5,000 for the pet owner.
If you or someone in your family makes direct contact with an animal that may have rabies, contact your family doctor.
For more information, contact the Huron County Health Unit at 519 482-3416 or 1-877-837-6143.
Whether you’re extremely passionate, a sometimes dabbler, or mildly curious about arts, culture and heritage in Huron County the people responsible for creating a new Huron County Cultural Plan would like to hear from you at a special event to be held in Blyth on May 15.
Those who wish to attend a public consultation session to launch the development of a new plan are asked to RSVP to Rick Sickinger at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 519 482-5457 Ext. 2730.
“We’ll be looking for input on where we are currently and where we would like to go as a sector and community over the next few years,” said Sickinger.
The session will run from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at the Blyth Memorial Community Hall, 431 Queen Street, Blyth.
May 1st is the next deadline for individuals and organizations to submit applications for the Huron Heritage Fund. Established in 2007, the purpose of the Huron Heritage Fund is to encourage the preservation of heritage assets and activities of heritage importance to the County of Huron and its residents.
Many initiatives from throughout Huron County have been supported by the Huron Heritage Fund since its inception. In recent years, projects have included support for Ashfield historians with their book “East Ashfield, 1842-2017”, upgrades to Elimville Community Park, renovations to Hensall Heritage Hall and recording oral histories of Huron Tract Land Trust Conservancy donors.
“The County will contribute up to 50 per cent of the costs of a project to a maximum of $5,000,” according to Beth Rumble, director of Cultural Services. This investment leverages other groups or individuals to invest in Huron County’s heritage also.
Projects will assist in the preservation and restoration of heritage landmarks, historic buildings, and objects of historical significance not owned by the County of Huron. Heritage publications and events also qualify for support under this program.
More information about the application process can be found on the Huron County Museum’s website at https://www.huroncountymuseum.ca/huron-heritage-fund/.
Non-profits face similar challenges to for-profit companies, but they also face their own specific set of challenges. However, time and cost can be a barrier to training and that’s where United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) has stepped in with the support of Libro Credit Union.
“UWPH is committed to helping strengthen the quality and impact of available programs and services,” commented UWPH’s Susan Faber. “We know how costly training can be, especially once you add in travel. We’re proud to bring workshops to our local area that focus on our industry and help staff, management and volunteers alike.”
Upcoming workshops include: “Data Driven Storytelling” in Stratford, on Apr. 18; “Microsoft Publisher Marketing Creation” in Listowel, on May 2; “Change Management” in St. Marys, on May 7; and “Leadership Development” in Clinton, on May 14. Workshops are $35 each for three hours of learning. For board members and staff that work with boards, there is a governance workshop in Stratford on Apr. 27. The full day is $170 and will be led by a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors.
“Many board members aren’t completely aware of their role and fiduciary duties and may not be sure how to monitor the organization’s performance or assess risk. These are just some of the topics of this workshop,” explained Faber.
Visit perthhuron.unitedway.ca for a comprehensive description of all workshops along with facilitator bios, cost and location. Participants can register by email at KEYs@perthhuron.unitedway.ca or call 519271-2978.
Green River Revival
Calling all fans of Creedence Clearwater Revival (CCR)! Don't miss Green River Revival, the world's number one international tribute to the legendary band. Produced by Booking House Inc., this high-energy, harmony-packed tribute concert is coming to the Huron Country Playhouse in Grand Bend on Sept. 21 for two shows.
Green River Revival is made up of world-class musicians who truly capture the passion and soul of John Fogerty and CCR. The members of this band have played together in theatres, casinos and festivals across Canada, Mexico and the U.S. for decades, presenting the ultimate CCR tribute experience. The group performs a hit parade of the band’s timeless hits including: "Proud Mary," "Bad Moon Rising," "Have You Ever Seen the Rain," "Up around the Bend," "Fortunate Son," "Lodi," "Travellin' Band" and many more favorites.
Performance times are 2 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $35 for adults and $25 for youth under 20 years of age. Tickets for groups of 10 or more are $30. HST is applicable to all ticket prices.
Tickets may be purchased online at www.draytonentertainment.com/green-river-revival, in person at any Drayton Entertainment Box Office, or by calling 1-855-DRAYTON (372-9866).
On Apr. 11, the Ontario government announced plans to establish 10 regional public health entities and 10 new regional boards of health with one common governance model by 2020-2021. Along with the plan is a provincial budget impact to public health of $220 million over the next two years. There are currently 35 public health units in Ontario.
The details for rolling out this plan are still to be determined. Dave Jewitt, chair of the Huron County Board of Health said, “Huron and Perth want to ensure that public health units will be included in the planning for this reorganization, so that the needs of our local communities are considered.”
“Our local public health units are on the front lines of preventing disease and promoting health in our community,” said Perth Board of Health Chair, Kathy Vassilakos. Public health works within Perth and Huron counties to deliver programs and services aimed at chronic and communicable disease prevention, food and water safety, healthy growth and development, substance use prevention, and healthy environments.
“Each board of health tailors the provincial requirements to meet local needs. This ensures that everyone in the community is well served,” added Vassilakos.
Examples of local public health activities led by the Perth District Health Unit and Huron County Health Unit include:
- Facilitating community opioid responses, including surveillance and harm reduction programs. This is done locally through the Perth Opioid Strategy Group and the Huron Substance Misuse Working Group.
- Promoting immunization, maintaining the immunization records for children and adults in Perth and Huron counties and distributing publicly funded vaccines to the community.
- Inspecting restaurants, salons and spas, pools and small drinking water systems to ensure food and water safety for the public.
- Collecting, analyzing and reporting population health information for Perth and Huron counties.
- Supporting new parents and their babies through parenting programs
At this time, it is unknown how the provincial budget announcement will impact the planned merger of the Perth District Health Unit and Huron County Health Unit, which becomes effective Jan. 1, 2020.
“We will continue to liaise with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care about our local amalgamation plans, and if and how they will be impacted,” said Dr. Miriam Klassen, Medical officer of Health for Perth County.
Alice Munro Festival
The Alice Munro Festival of the Short Story returns for its fifteenth year on May 24-25 with a line-up of ten award-winning Canadian authors. The two-day event takes place in Wingham and Bayfield and includes: author readings, writing master classes, panel discussion and an awards luncheon for the annual short story contest.
Leading this year’s line-up is respected bestselling author Nino Ricci. His first novel, “Lives of the Saints”, garnered international acclaim, appearing in 17 countries and winning a host of awards, including the Governor General’s Award for Fiction. It formed the first volume of a trilogy that was adapted as a miniseries starring Sophia Loren.Ricci also authored the novels “Testament”, winner of the Trillium Award, “The Origin of Species”, which earned him a second Governor General’s Award, and a biography of Pierre Elliott Trudeau, included in the Penguin’s Extraordinary Canadians series. His most recent novel “Sleep”, won the Canadian Authors’ Award for Fiction. Ricci is currently the inaugural holder of the Alice Munro Chair in Creativity at Western University.
The list of guest authors includes three Scotiabank Giller Prize finalists who all have new books being published this spring. Mona Awad, author of “13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl”, will be promoting her new novel, “Bunny”. Described as “The Vegetarian” meets “Heathers”, this darkly funny, seductively strange novel will be published by Penguin Random House on June 7. Anthony De Sa’s first book, “Barnacle Love”, was critically acclaimed and became a finalist for the 2008 Scotiabank Giller Prize and the 2009 Toronto Book Award. His new novel, “Children of the Moon”, follows the tumultuous story of Pó, a Maasai girl with albinism who is seen as a curse upon her tribe, to be released in May. Anakana Schofield the author of the 2015 Giller Prize shortlisted novel “Martin John”, brings her new unconventional novel “Bina: A Novel in Warnings” that will also be published in May.
Indigenous author, Joshua Whitehead had a break out success with his 2018 novel “Jonny Appleseed”, a unique, shattering vision of First Nations life, full of grit, glitter, and dreams. The novel was long listed for a Giller Prize and short listed for a Governor General's Award in 2018.
Alicia Elliott a Tuscarora writer from Six Nations of the Grand River reads from her new non-fiction release, “A Mind Spread Out on the Ground” that asks essential questions about the treatment of Native people in North America while drawing on intimate details of her own life and experience with intergenerational trauma.
Amy Jones’s first novel, “We're All in This Together”, was a national bestseller, won the Northern Lit Award, and was a finalist for the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour. Her new novel, “Every Little Piece of Me”, examines family, friendship, celebrity, and the cost of living in the public eye -- because when everyone suddenly knows your name, it's easy to forget who you really are.
K.D. Miller’s short story collection, “Late Breaking”, was inspired by the work of Canadian artist Alex Colville. The linked stories form a suite of portraits that bear witness to the vulnerability of the elder heart, revealing that love, sex, and heartbreak are not only the domain of the young.
Vancouver-based author Ian Williams’s 2019 novel “Reproduction”, is a tale of love among inherited and invented families that sweeps through a world of racial and religious mash-ups, cultural collisions, and cross-pollinations galore. William’s poetry collection, “Personals”, was shortlisted for the Griffin Poetry Prize and the Robert Kroetsch Poetry Book Award. His short story collection, “Not Anyone’s Anything”, won the Danuta Gleed Literary Award for the best first collection of short fiction in Canada.
Rounding out the list of this year’s guest authors is Bayfield’s Andy McGuire. His debut poetry collection, “Country Club”, a lyrical, wilderness of power, wealth, leisure and desire, the poems freewheel across state lines with panache and flagrant feeling. McGuire’s second poetry collection, “I Hate Poems but I Love Poetry”, is forthcoming.
Tickets, and weekend passes, for the festival are on sale now. For more information about the guest authors and festival program, including how to purchase tickets, please visit alicemunrofestival.ca. The festival is supported in part by: The Ontario Arts Council, Township of North Huron, County of Huron, Municipality of Bluewater, Capital Power, The Lake House of Bayfield, Royal Homes, and Dr. Marie Gear.