Volunteer West Island opens Meals on Wheels in Dollard-des-Ormeaux – Montreal

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Volunteer West Island has partnered with the city of Dollard-des-Ormeaux to set up a Meals on Wheels programme in the municipality.

The service provides hot meals to the elderly, as well as other vulnerable people in the area.  A regular visit by the volunteers also helps to ensure that those in need don’t feel isolated.


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“It’s an aging population,” explains Volunteer West Island (VWI) executive director Lynda Barrett.  “There’s a lot of individuals that are completely functional but as soon as they have a loss of autonomy or they have a stroke they need support.”  She adds that the waiting lists Meals on Wheels are growing.

This is the 13th Meals on Wheels kitchen that VWI has in the West Island.  Others can be found in Lachine, Pointe Claire, Pierrefonds and as far west as Senneville.

WATCH: Celebrating West Island Meals on Wheels volunteers (2015)







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The last time they opened one was 35 years ago.  This new kitchen will operate out of the DDO civic centre and the volunteers expect to serve up to 40 clients.

“Because there was a bigger demand in DDO, Lachine as well as Pierrefonds, it was important for us to open something,” Barrett added.


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Garden vegetables or produce to share? Meals on Wheels in Edmonton will put them to good use (July 2018)

Dollard-des-Ormeaux Mayor Alex Bottausci adds that not everyone in the West Island is affluent as some people might think.

“There are pockets of poverty and living below the threshold,” Bottausci said, “and we need to be cognizant of that and be a little bit empathetic to this sort of thing.”

Each meal is $4.  Delivery has already begun and will happen every Thursday.

Volunteer West Island eventually wants to have the service twice weekly.

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TransLink’s largest-ever SkyTrain station upgrade opens to the public – BC

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The wrapping came off of TransLink’s largest-ever SkyTrain station upgrade Saturday, with a new platform at Commercial-Broadway Station now open.

Work on the $81-million project has been underway since 2015 to help accommodate growing ridership, which has further surged since the completion of the Evergreen Line extension.

The station was originally constructed in 1985 and saw its last major expansion in 2002 when the Millennium Line platform opened.


READ MORE:
$81M upgrade to Commercial-Broadway SkyTrain station complete

TransLink says the station now handles about 200,000 passengers every weekday and more than eight million boardings per year.

The upgrade includes a new Expo Line platform that will allow downtown-bound passengers to board trains from both sides, reducing congestion at peak hours.

It also includes a new elevated walkway over Broadway that will allow passengers to more easily transfer between the Expo and Millennium lines, and the number of elevators in the station has doubled from two to four.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Gathering place for new Canadians opens in south Winnipeg – Winnipeg

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Ryerson School in south Winnipeg is the new home of a community hub aimed at giving immigrants a warm welcome.


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“Many of the services for our new refugees are in downtown Winnipeg, but the kids are here. Giving the organizations that serve these communities a place to meet here at Ryerson School is an exciting part of what we can do for families,” says Ted Fransen, superintendent of the Pembina Trails school division.

The idea has been in the works for over a year.

One of many families present at the grand opening of Winnipeg’s new welcoming hub.

Marek Tkach / Global News

The final product was designed by Immigration Partnership Winnipeg and the Manitoba Association of Newcomer Serving Organizations.

“It’s essentially like a family resource centre for some of the newcomer families that live in the Pembina Trails area. We want to provide a safe, welcoming space for these families where they can find support and services but also build connections with each other,” says Noelle DePape of Immigration Partnership Winnipeg.


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Nasar and Nahsih Hamad are brothers who moved to Canada from northern Iraq, They are excited to take advantage of the new facilities where Nasar’s five-year-old son goes to school.

“We are comfortable here not like Iraq. We are very comfortable,” said Nasar.

“The Canadian people help us go shopping, go to the doctor and take the bus. They show us.”

WATCH: Syrian refugee thanks Justin Trudeau at New Brunswick town hall






© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Newfoundland woman opens her heart — and her home — to cancer patients

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Last January, Laura Elliott took the first steps of the toughest journey of her life.

The native of South Brook, N.L., now living in Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., was diagnosed with breast cancer and started down a long road of surgeries, radiation and chemotherapy.

Two weeks later, she got more bad news. Her mom, Judy Jackson, called to say she had cancer too.

« It was pretty difficult for myself and my mom and our whole family, » she said. « As we couldn’t be there in person, we had to be supportive over the phone and FaceTime. To have one person go through it in a family, then have two go through it at the same time, it was pretty difficult. »

Laura Elliott underwent treatment for breast cancer in 2018. (Submitted by Laura Elliott)

The one positive in their experience, she says, was the fact they were going through the treatments together and were able to support each other.

« I was about two or three weeks ahead of her. Every appointment, every surgery, just pretty much all of our treatments, we were talking back and forth every day, » she said.

The journey wasn’t exactly the same for the two women, though.

Elliott had only a half-hour drive to receive her radiation therapy in Alberta. Jackson had to travel five hours from South Brook in central Newfoundland to St. John’s for hers.

Judy Jackson of South Brook came to St. John’s for cancer treatment. (Submitted by Laura Elliott)

She was fortunate to have a brother in the city with whom she could stay for free.

She found lots of others, however, who didn’t have it so well.

« We did some research, and there’s a lack of accommodations for people that are dealing with cancer, » Elliott said. « People staying in expensive hotels, and then gas and food on top of that. I’m sure it would have been a nightmare. »

That’s why she and her family decided they needed to do something to help.

On the walls of the Elliotts’ guest room, cancer patients will find inspirational messages. (Submitted by Laura Elliott)

« Dealing with cancer is stressful for any family, » she said. « Me and my husband decided we should take the burden off other families and open up one of the rooms in our home to cancer patients to relieve the stress of finding accommodations, and the cost of accommodations. They’re not cheap. »

They fixed up a room and registered their availability with cancer charities. After attracting a lot of attention on social media, they’re expecting their first patient any day now.

Elliott hopes the people who stay with her family can benefit from more than just a bed.

The Elliotts have prepared a guest room for visiting cancer patients. (Submitted by Laura Elliott)

« To be there for somebody else, to help them through their journey to add a positive vibe to their life, is what brings happiness to us. »

She says all the support she and her mom received through their own cancer journey, from many different sources, has encouraged and inspired them. And she believes it helped their healing.

« My mom is doing very well. She’ll start her reconstructive surgery this year, » she said. « I still have maybe one more surgery to go through. I had some difficulty with my first surgery I had back in April. We’re both cancer-free right now. »

Read more from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador

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‘This will be their future’: Petitcodiac United Baptist Church opens new wing – New Brunswick

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After two years, the Petitcodiac United Baptist Church has a new wing.

“Two years ago we were staring at a bill of around $400,000 just to clean up the oil spill so this didn’t seem like a possibility — at all. But God can do great things,” said pastor David Woodworth.


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Moncton’s Catholic churches face possible closures (2017)

In 2016, the historic, 137-year-old wing that served as the original sanctuary of the church was demolished because of an oil spill. But now, thanks to donations from the congregation and the support of Jean Irving, the church is bigger than ever.

WATCH: Church bell tolls no more at the Petitcodiac Baptist Church






The new wing is equipped with a massive multipurpose room, a fitness centre and a new community space in the basement.

“We feel like we are more equipped with respect to our facilities, to serve in our community and carry out the mission that God has called us to out here in Petitcodiac,” Woodworth said of the updates.

“I personally look at it as if God removed something that was going to be a liability to us in the future and now he has established the facility of Petitcodiac church, hopefully for 137 years to come.”

READ MORE: Loss of historic Petitcodiac church seen as a blessing in disguise

Leslie Gogan, who has been coming to the church for over 50 years, says she misses the old, historic space, but is excited by the possibilities the new addition brings.

“I’ve come to the point where I realized that I have those memories, that’s my past, but there’s a whole generation of people coming up, young kids, big kids, and this will be their future,” she said.

“This will be what they remember.”

The new wing is being celebrated Saturday evening and regular service, of course, happens Sunday.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Premier John Horgan opens door to including dental coverage within B.C.’s health care system

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B.C. Premier John Horgan is not opposed to the idea of the province covering dental care as part of the provincial health care system.

Horgan was asked about the issue as part of a year-end interview with Global News.

“We have been looking at it and hopefully we will be able to do something about it in the next budget,” Horgan said.

WATCH: March 2018 — B.C. to increase number of annual dental surgeries






The Ontario NDP unveiled a campaign promise in March in to extend dental care to people in the country’s most populated province without insurance coverage.

The NDP estimated the plan would provide dental benefits to 4.5 million Ontarians at a cost of $1.2 billion.


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The plan would cover basic procedures such as dentures, exams, X-rays, fillings, cleanings and restorative work.

“It would take pressure off of our doctors’ offices, and off of our hospitals, where people are now forced to go when they’re in absolute crisis when it comes to their mouth and their oral health and their dental needs,” NDP leader Andrea Horwath said during the election campaign.

Horwath is now the leader of the official opposition, losing to current Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

Under the plan, public cash would cover care for seniors without insurance and those on social assistance.

For employers, the NDP would make offering a minimum standard of dental coverage mandatory, including for part-time and contract workers.


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British Columbia’s Medical Service Plan (MSP) premiums currently cover medically necessary services provided by physicians and midwives, dental and oral surgery performed in a hospital, eye examinations that are medically required and some orthodontic services.

Horgan said that his own experience has made it clear to him how important dental services are.

WATCH: March 2018 — Vulnerable B.C. children will have quicker access to dental surgery






“I got my two front teeth knocked out playing basketball when I was a kid and it meant that I was always tentative about smiling. Dental care, dental health is critically important to physical well being as well as mental well being,” Horgan said.

“I believe it’s an area we need to move into with kids and get good habits with good oral hygiene and make sure that is funded.”


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In 2008, the Union of B.C. Municipalities (UBCM) supported a motion to ask the province to take immediate steps to remove access barriers to dental health care, allocate more funding for basic dental health care insurance for low income individuals and families in the province, and work with the BC Dental Association to resolve the discrepancy between the BC Dental Fee guide and the actual fees charged by dentists.

In 2018, UBCM discussed requiring the Ministry of Health to add basic dental care to MSP coverage and to have B.C. mandate a provincial requirement for all public water source treatment to include fluoridation where naturally-occurring levels do not meet the minimum suggested level of 0.07mg/L.

  • With files from Kerri Breen

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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SilverStar opens for season – Okanagan

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SilverStar flung open its doors on Saturday for the 2018-19 ski season and approximately 2,000 guests hit the resort’s slopes.

Originally, the resort was slated to open earlier in the week, but had to delay plans due to incomplete snow coverage. Precipitation on Thursday and Friday filled in those blanks, and Saturday’s blue skies created a great first day.


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“Recent snowfall and a delayed opening of the resort meant better conditions on the slopes,” said Ian Jenkins, SilverStar’s director of sales and marketing.

There were laughs aplenty as happy skiers waited in lift lineups as SilverStar opened for the season on Saturday.

SilverStar

SilverStar’s operations director, Brad Baker, said the recent snowfall “was just enough for our groomers to work their magic and create early season skiing on the upper half of the mountain for our guests.”

Temperatures stayed below freeing all day, with the sun coming out early-mid morning. The resort also celebrated the opening of the new Des Schumann gondola.

The resort is set to open more terrain and lifts as the season continues.

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Jagmeet Singh still committed to Burnaby South after seat opens in his former home turf of Brampton

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OTTAWA—NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh is sticking to his plan to run in the British Columbia riding of Burnaby South, even after the sudden resignation of a Liberal MP in Brampton creates an opening on his former home turf.

Singh reiterated his commitment to Burnaby South on Friday during a press conference he held to protest the government’s use of back-to-work legislation to end a strike at Canada Post.

One day earlier, the Liberal government confirmed a report from the Hill Times that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau intends to schedule a byelection in Burnaby South and two other vacant ridings for some point in February. Hours later, Brampton East MP Raj Grewal posted on Facebook that he will resign his seat for undisclosed “personal and medical reasons.”

Singh represented a riding that overlapped with Brampton East when he was a provincial MPP at Queen’s Park from 2011 to 2017. The area is now held provincially by Singh’s younger brother Gurratan, who won the seat in the June Ontario election.

But as Singh underscored his desire to represent Burnaby South in the House of Commons, Liberals were tightlipped about Grewal’s decision to drop out of Brampton East.

In an interview with the Star, Holland said he doesn’t believe it is respectful to speculate about Grewal’s decision to step down, because it is a private matter. He said Grewal informed him of his resignation Wednesday, but refused to disclose any further information to clarify the MP’s decision.

“It’s sad. It’s very unfortunate that he’s facing very serious personal issues. It was very challenging, but the right thing to do,” Holland said. “It wouldn’t be respectful to him to comment further.”

Grewal has not responded to requests for comment from the Star this week.

The prime minister posted on Twitter Thursday night that Grewal’s decision to resign “was the right one.” He added: “I hope he receives the support he needs.”

In his Facebook post Thursday, Grewal said his decision to step down as the MP for Brampton East was difficult, but ultimately necessary.

“This has been a decision I’ve struggled with for some time now and one I made with great difficulty and real sadness. But I feel I need this time to focus on my health and family,” he wrote.

Grewal, 33, was a Bay Street lawyer before he entered politics and won the Brampton East Liberal nomination during a raucous night in September 2014. The Star reported at the time that a long line of Liberal supporters were unable to cast votes, and that a brawl erupted outside the nomination venue.

The MP sat on the House of Commons health committee, and was known for organizing youth basketball games in Brampton every weekend.

He was also involved in controversy last spring, after Trudeau returned from a scandal-tainted trade mission to India in February. Parliament’s Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion launched an investigation into Grewal’s conduct after the National Post and the Star reported Grewal invited a Brampton construction executive who paid him for legal advice to events with Trudeau, cabinet ministers and high-ranking government officials during the trip to India.

NDP MP Charlie Angus, who called for the investigation along with a Conservative MP from Alberta, called for the investigation to continue even though Grewal is resigning. “It is important the investigation is completed,” he wrote on Twitter.

Ken Hardie, a Liberal MP from B.C. who sat near Grewal in the House of Commons, said by email Friday that he doesn’t know why the Brampton East MP is stepping down.

“It was apparent to me that his constituents really valued him as their MP,” he said. “Don’t know of anything that might have led to his resignation, but I hope that all works out well for him.”

Gurpreet Dhillon, a Brampton city councillor whose brother works for Grewal, told the Star that the MP’s resignation took him by surprise.

“We speak regularly. I was at his office this week, on Monday, just to drop by and say hi,” he said.

“He was an excellent representative of the community, so to have his voice and his leadershpi from the MP level not there for the future, I think Brampton East certainly has a big loss,” he added. “We hope everything is OK with him.”

Alex Ballingall is an Ottawa-based reporter covering national politics. Follow him on Twitter: @aballinga

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Murder trial opens for man accused of deliberately driving van at cyclist

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After Steven Doyle got the better of him in a downtown Toronto street fight, Ayubullo Mohammad-Daud told him “I’ll be back.”

On Monday, a Superior Court jury heard what happened when Mohammad-Daud made good on his words as the prosecutors opened their case against him. The 23-year-old has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.

Steven Doyle, 27, left, was killed in a hit-and-run on Aug. 15, 2016. Ayubullo Mohammad-Daud, 21, right, of no fixed address, has been charged with first-degree murder and his trial began Monday.
Steven Doyle, 27, left, was killed in a hit-and-run on Aug. 15, 2016. Ayubullo Mohammad-Daud, 21, right, of no fixed address, has been charged with first-degree murder and his trial began Monday.  (Toronto police photos)

It was late afternoon on Aug. 15, 2016, when the two men, who were strangers, crossed paths on hardscrabble George St., between Shuter and Gerrard Sts.

“Steven Doyle confronted him about what he was doing there, asked him to leave, and it escalated from there,” Crown attorney Lindsay Kromm told a jury during her opening statement.

The argument turned physical and Doyle put the accused in a chokehold and brought him to the ground, Kromm said. The Crown’s theory is not only that Doyle won the fight but that he stole Mohammad-Daud’s watch. Surveillance video captured some of the altercation.

After the fight, Mohammad-Daud announced “I’ll be back.”

Doyle told his friend he was concerned that if he returned, he would be coming back for him. Mohammad-Daud then walked to a car rental agency about 10 minutes away and stole a dark blue Dodge Caravan.

He drove the van right back to George St., swerved up onto the sidewalk and struck Doyle who was on his bike, sending him and the bike flying into the air, Kromm continued. This was also recorded on a surveillance camera.

“You will see him avoid every pedestrian on the street except for one,” Kromm told the jury. “The only person struck by the van that afternoon was Steven Doyle, the very person who had assaulted the accused that same afternoon.”

A collision reconstructionist will testify the van was travelling at about 50 kilometres per hour when it struck Doyle.

Doyle died of significant blunt force trauma to his head. He was 27. The pathologist who performed the autopsy will testify a watch was found in his pocket.

After hitting Doyle, Mohammad-Daud swerved onto the opposite sidewalk, hitting a pole, before continuing up George toward Gerrard, where he turned east, the jury was told.

Several witnesses saw the heavily damaged van swerving in traffic but not leaving the roadway or hitting any other objects.

Surveillance video recorded Mohammad-Daud leaving the van in a parking lot at 285 Shuter St. He removed his jacket, wiped down the steering wheel and console before running away.

Mohammad-Daud was arrested nine days later. His long long, dark hair, as seen on the surveillance video, was cut short and his hair and eyebrows died blonde.

Prosecutor Karen Simone told the jury Mohammad-Daud admits he stole the van and that he was behind the wheel on George St. He is an unlicensed driver, but also admits he has operated a motor vehicle on numerous occasions.

The trial continues Tuesday.

Betsy Powell is a Toronto-based reporter covering crime and courts. Follow her on Twitter: @powellbetsy

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California vote opens the door for British Columbia to stop changing clocks for Daylight Saving Time

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Time could be ticking on a long-time tradition in British Columbia. Premier John Horgan says that if California goes ahead with sticking on permanent daylight saving time, B.C. could very well follow suit.

On Tuesday, a majority of California voters, nearly 60 per cent, voted in favour to leave the state in daylight saving time all year round.


READ MORE:
B.C. premier says the time isn’t right to get rid of Daylight Saving Time

“There is a long way to go still but I can’t imagine British Columbia can’t go down that route if California chooses to,” said Horgan on Wednesday to Global News.

In order for the clocks to be fixed all year round two-thirds of the members of the California state legislature would have to vote in favour of the change. There would then have to be the support of a majority of the national congress to change the federal law.

WATCH HERE: A week after saying it wasn’t on the radar, the B.C. government says it may be time to consider abandoning Daylight Saving Time






“A two-thirds vote isn’t easy to do, particularly in the United States, and then they would need approval of Congress,” Horgan said.

“It certainly speaks to how much people care about this issue. I have received tens of thousands of emails from British Columbians who want to stay on Daylight Saving time. I said last week that as long as our neighbours, trading partners are changing their clocks, we should too,” said Horgan.


READ MORE:
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Horgan seemingly put the time change issue to bed last week when he told reporters the challenge with stopping the practice of changing the clocks was working with other jurisdictions along the west coast. Oregon and Washington had previously indicated a lack of interest in making a change.

Democratic Rep. Kansen Chu of San Jose said last month that he sponsored the California resolution after his dentist called him to complain about springing forward when clocks are moved up an hour every March. That switch takes away an hour’s sleep in the middle of the night as it shifts an hour of sunlight from the morning to the evening.


READ MORE:
COMMENTARY: Like clockwork, most of the country continues the folly of Daylight Saving Time

Chu said he investigated the issue further and learned the original reason for implementing Daylight Saving Time — to save energy during the First World War — no longer seemed relevant.

Chu said he also came across studies showing an increased risk of car accidents and heart attacks following the spring change when people lose an hour of sleep.

“It’s a public safety measure,” Chu said. “And I don’t know anybody who really enjoys doing this adjustment of their schedule twice a year.”

–With files from the Associated Press

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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