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The Bayfield BreezeIssue 660 Week 10 Vol 13

March 2, 2022

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Issue 660 Week 10 Vol 13
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BRVTA SUPPORT COLDEST NIGHT OF THE YEAR

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The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) sent a team to participate in Goderich’s “Coldest Night of the Year” walk in support of the Huron Homlessness Initiative. The team contributed $1,765 to the over $105,000 that was raised at the event. Three hundred plus walkers, making up 53 teams, braved the chilly but dry weather on Saturday, Feb. 26 to walk around The Square, with all funds raised remaining to help the homeless in Huron County. Pictured are Ralph Blasting, George Cantin, Peter Brent, Conrad Kuiper., Roger and Pat Lewington. (Photo by Ralph Blasting)


MANY VOLUNTEERS MAKING CANDLELIGHT WALK FUNDRAISER A REALITY

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The sales team for the Candlelight Memorial Walk to raise funds for the Bayfield sponsored Children’s Room at Huron Hospice are seated l-r: Dave Gillians and Rosie Weise and standing l-r: Brian King and Roger Mather. (Submitted photo)


Preparations for the March 26th, “Candlelight Memorial Walk” on the Taylor Trail in Varna to fund a future ‘Children’s Room’ at Huron Hospice, are well underway. The Bayfield team of volunteers who have been spearheading the campaign, have been energized by the Ontario Government’s offer to match every dollar that they raise.

The expression “it takes a village” is especially pertinent when it comes to preparing and then executing a fundraising event such as the Candlelight Memorial Walk.

Bluewater Recycling in Centralia had their team sort out about 200 square plastic bottles which still had caps and they generously donated them to the walk. Kevin Kale and Paul Hagarty constructed the lantern bases and Rosie Wiese searched all over Southwestern Ontario for Dollar Store candles. A group led by Helen Varekamp and Susan Bender designed an attractive and eye-catching poster. Bronwyn Bechard and Wiese have been visiting retailers asking to have the posters prominently displayed. Peter Jeffers and his team of BRVTA, “Trailblazers” will be at the trail to place and light the candles and then retrieve them after the event is over.

The group also has a sales team composed of Weise, Brian King, Roger Mather and Dave Gillians who have been canvassing businesses and organizations from all areas of Huron County trying to find sponsors.

According to Mather, “It’s been a difficult couple of years for many businesses but we have been pleased with the generosity of the community. People have been receptive and kind when I tell them what we are doing and who we are doing it for. We have had some delightful surprises such as the ‘Dress Down Friday’ employee group fund at the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority who have offered to become a sponsor. Sponsorships range from $300 to $1,000 and we will feature sponsors on our social media and on a banner at the event.”

Participants in the Walk are asked to make tax-deductible donations from $30, $50 to $100 to light a memorial candle. To donate, go to www.huronhospice.ca/candlelightmemorialwalk  or if preferred donate in person. Varekamp will be at the Hospice, just outside of Clinton, from 2-3 p.m. each Thursday in March. For more information call Gillians at 519 565-5884.

The Candlelight Memorial Walk will be a self-guided walk and can be done any time between 7- 9 p.m., although members of the BRVTA, and a team of Bayfield volunteers, will be on hand to make sure everyone is safe. A dedication ceremony will be held and filmed at 8 p.m. at the beginning of the trail and posted on the Huron Hospice website.

The Taylor Trailhead can be found at the Varna (Stanley) Complex, 5 km east of Bayfield on Mill Road. Please, no pets at this event.

SCARBOROUGH TO BE DEFENDED BY SALLY LEITCH

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The countdown is now on for Bayfield Reads! This tradition corresponds with CBC’s Canada Reads. Just as they will do on the National level, Bayfield will choose their winner for this annual event determining the results with the help of a slate of local defenders.

The Village Bookshop invites everyone to join them for Bayfield Reads on Sunday, March 27 starting at 3 p.m. on ZOOM.

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This year’s books and defenders are: “Five Little Indians’ by Michelle Good, defended by Abby Armstrong; “Scarborough” by Catherine Hernandez, defended by Sally Leitch; “What Strange Paradise” by Omar El Akkad, defended by Rachel Rishworth; “Life in the City of Dirty Water” by Clayton Thomas-Müller, defended by Duncan McGregor; and “Washington Black” by Esi Edugyan, defended by Ralph Blasting.

On Feb. 23, Abby Armstrong was introduced as the defender for the book, Five Little Indians, review Issue 659 to learn more.

The second book on this year’s slate is Scarborough by Catherine Hernandez. Scarborough is the multi-voiced story of a diverse Toronto neighborhood that refuses to fall apart in the face of poverty and crime. Weaving together the stories of three children growing up in difficult circumstances with the stories of three adults who are doing their best to help them out, Scarborough is a vibrant and emotional debut.

Defending Scarborough is Sally Leitch. Originally from Goderich, Leitch has spent much of her life between Toronto and Bayfield, where she once ran Mr. Woodchuck, a toy shop on Main Street. Having retired full time to Bayfield in 2018, Leitch finds herself enjoying the summer bustle as well as the peacefulness of the winter months in Huron County. A voracious reader, she loves novels as well as nonfiction books about history and science, and has a particular affection for Canadian writers. She has read “Far from the Madding Crowd” several times, just finished “The Overstory” by Richard Powers, and is currently reading “Power and Thrones: A New History of the Middle Ages” by Dan Jones.

TRIO OF KITTENS DEMONSTRATE SUCCESS OF FOSTER CARE

Aubergine (Submitted photos) picture of a cat

Aubergine (Submitted photos)

photo of a cat named Squash

Squash

Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines (BFF) is an amazing, volunteer-run service that rescues and rehomes hundreds of feral, orphaned and abandoned felines. Every year more and more cats and kittens are rescued through this organization. BFF has been so successful in their mission that they have reached a point where expansion would be beneficial, for the volunteers who operate it and the cats/kittens themselves.

This expansion can be achieved through the help of volunteers both through foster care as well as at the shelter.

“We believe there are many people in the community able to offer a safe space to some of the felines awaiting their forever homes or help care for the cats housed at the shelter,” said Foster Care Volunteer Coordinator Mary Pounder. “Foster care offers wonderful opportunities for people who love cats but cannot have one due to lifestyle or who want more cat love but are not able to add a new member to their family. Working at the shelter allows you an opportunity to care for and cuddle cats without causing your allergic family member discomfort. It is extremely rewarding to see these frightened, abandoned cats/kittens learn that humans are kind and caring.”

BFF will be hosting a Volunteer Orientation on Saturday, March 5. The one-hour Orientation will take place at 11 a.m. at 16 Keith Crescent in Bayfield. Attendees must be vaccinated and masked. For those who prefer to meet over ZOOM connection details will be sent prior to the event.

Anyone who is interested in becoming a BFF Volunteer is asked to please email Mary Pounder at jackabunny@gmail.com, or by calling 519 565-2717, with their intent to attend the orientation and whether they would prefer to meet in-person or to use ZOOM.

There are many volunteer opportunities to fit someone’s lifestyle, availability, time/space constraints and experience. To learn more about these opportunities please view Issue 659 of the Bayfield Breeze.

Of course, adopting a cat or kitten is also a terrific way to support BFF’s mission. Aubergine, Squash and Pumpkin are the Adopt-a-BFF cats of the week.

These three kittens were found together and brought to BFF.  Aubergine is a grey female while Squash and Pumpkin are male orange Tabbies. They were scruffy, thin and wild but are now very loving six-month-olds.

Photo of two cats in a cage. Pumpkin (at rear) and Squash in front.

Pumpkin (at rear) and Squash in front.

“These three kitties are an excellent example of the wonderful work of our foster parents,” said Pounder. “When admitted, these kittens were frightened of people, they were little balls of teeth and claws. After a few months in foster care, they love being pet and cuddled. As soon as they are neutered/spayed they will be ready for their forever home. We are sure that it won’t take long for them to find one.”

If your heart is melting for Aubergine, Squash and/or Pumpkin please email bayfieldsforgottenfelines@gmail.com for more information.

The adoption fee is now $200. Adopted cats are vetted, shots are up-to-date and they are also spayed or neutered. Donations are also always appreciated. E-transfers can be sent to the Rescue’s email or email to arrange for a drop-off or pick-up of donations. Cheques can be mailed to Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines, P.O. Box 33, Bayfield, ON, N0M 1G0.

OPTIMIST CLUB

People often ask if they can add an engraved brick to the path around the Splash Pad in Clan Gregor Square and members of the Optimist Club of Bayfield are pleased to announce that there is further opportunity to have a name added to the circle in 2022.

The engraved pavers in Clan Gregor Square are a reminder of how great area residents and visitors are when it comes to supporting such projects as the Playground and the Splash Pad.

“In Memoriam” stones for loved ones as well as “just because” stones can be ordered with the work being done on site later in 2022 using the same two brick sizes that are already installed around the Splash Pad. The cost of these engraved bricks will be medium, $90; and large, $110. The plan is to have the bricks engraved in late May just prior to opening the Splash Pad.

Anyone with an interest in adding a brick can contact Mike Dixon via email at mikedixon@tcc.on.ca or by calling 519 955-5254 for further information.

UNITED CHURCH

March 6 is the date chosen by St. Andrews United Church in Bayfield to return to in-person worship.

Rev. Joe Gray will be the supply minister and Paul Howe will be the music director with guest soloist Peter Postill. The service will begin at 11 a.m.

Those who gather will be asked to follow local guidelines set out by Huron Perth Public Health as well as current protocol regarding double vaccination, passports, wearing masks and social distancing.

FOOD BANK

Assisting people in the community facing food insecurity is a year-round commitment for the Bayfield Area Food Bank (BAFB) but the volunteers don’t do it alone.

“We would like to thank those that are continuing to donate at the library, and at our outdoor bin located on the north parish hall porch at 10 Keith Cres. In the village,” said Terry Henderson, president of the BAFB. “We greatly appreciate the continued support from area residents.”

The BAFB is currently looking for household cleaning products including dish soap and laundry detergent.

For anyone who would like to support BAFB with a monetary gift, there are a few options available. Cheques can be mailed to: Bayfield Area Food Bank, 10 Keith Cres., Bayfield, ON, N0M 1G0. An e-transfer can be made through BAFB’s Gmail account: bayfieldareafoodbank@gmail.com or a donation can be received online through the www.canadahelps.org website. All donations of $20 or more will be receipted for tax purposes. BAFB is a registered charity with CRA. Anyone who would like a receipt is asked to ensure that their name and address are clearly provided along with the donation.

Anyone in need of assistance at this time is asked to please reach out through either an email to bayfieldareafoodbank@gmail.com or phone/text 519 955-7444. All enquiries are handled with complete confidentiality.

PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH

Knox Presbyterian Church, Bayfield will be opening for In-person Sunday Services, starting March 6, with social distancing and masks, as before. They will also continue to offer the 11 a.m. service on ZOOM and YouTube, for those who are unable to attend in person.

In addition, Rev. Lisa Dolson will be providing a ZOOM service for “World Day of Prayer” on Friday, March 4. This year’s service was created by the women of England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For a ZOOM link to this special service, as well as regular services, please visit the church website: www.knoxbayfield.ca or follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/KnoxBayfield.

LIFE AT THE RINK

Bayfield Community Centre

The Bayfield Community Centre and Arena is open once again! Thank you to everyone for their patience.

“We are pleased to announce your Bayfield Community Centre and Arena is back to full operations now that the COVID lock down is over,” said Director of Marketing, Jeff Kish.

The schedule for community sponsored free skating programs is: Moms and Tots and Seniors on Mondays from 10:30-11:30 a.m.; Kids Shinny also on Mondays, 7-8 p.m.; and Public and Family Skate on Sundays, 1-3 p.m.

The Bayfield Community Centre’s management team continues to work hard to ensure COVID safety procedures and protocols are maintained. Safety for the community is priority one. Masks are required while in the Community Centre and can be taken off once on the ice.

“While we are filling up the Arena with teams and tournaments there is still plenty of available ice times – check out our online events schedule for available ice times and book some fun time for your family and friends,” said Director of Marketing, Jeff Kish.

Check the events schedule for available Ice times and community sponsored free skating by visiting www.bayfieldcommunitycentre.ca

ANGLICAN CHURCH

Trinity St. James Anglican Church in Bayfield has returned to in-person services on both Sunday and Wednesday mornings. In keeping with COVID-19 protocols, worshippers must pre-register to attend the services that begin at 11 a.m and 10:30 a.m. respectively.

In light of the ongoing pandemic, those wishing to attend will be required to observe public health measures such as, wearing a mask and maintaining a safe physical distance from other worshippers.

To pre-register please contact the churchwarden, Godfrey Heathcote by calling 519 565-5824 or via e-mail at godfrey.heathcote@dal.ca

SUNSET COMMUNITY FOUNDATION

The 2021 report of the International Panel on Climate Change called it “Code Red” for humanity. Last year, the climate crisis caused unprecedented heatwaves, flooding, wildfires, and other extreme weather events in Canada.

“Climate change is a health issue, a social justice issue, an educational issue, an economic issue, and a security issue,” said Chair of the Sunset Community Foundation (SCF), Debra Gill. “Above all, it is a community issue.” The SCF, one of nearly 200 community foundations across Canada, is committed to acting at the local level.

The SCF has created a special Climate Action Fund, which will be used to support local groups working on creative solutions to help local communities mitigate and adapt to climate change. Potential projects include: tree planting, wind and solar energy projects, EV charging stations, and much more. The Foundation has a history of supporting organizations such as Blue Bayfield, Eco-Exeter and Lakeshore Eco-Network.

To promote its focus on climate action, the SCF is sponsoring a coloring and writing contest for elementary school students during the March Break. Details can be found on the SCF’s website: www.sunsetcommunityfoundation.ca

The SCF’s board has also developed a Climate Action Commitment to guide its actions over the next several years.

“The Sunset Community Foundation is committed to:

  • Ensuring that our boards, staff, volunteers, and stakeholders are informed about the causes, impacts and solutions of climate change, and the implications for our work.
  • Making grants to accelerate work that addresses the root causes of climate change or adaptation to its impacts in the communities we serve.
  • Considering climate change in relation to our endowment funds, seeking to align our investment strategy with the transition to a low-carbon economy.
  • Minimizing the climate impact of our own operations.
  • Advocating for more ambitious action on climate change by our key stakeholders, partners, and audiences.
  • Reporting about the actions we have taken to support local climate change mitigation and adaptation.”

Gill said developing the commitment was an important first step in focusing attention on this important issue.

“COVID was an immediate and urgent concern, and as a Foundation, we worked hard to help our local charities respond,” she said. “As we emerge from the pandemic, it’s time to re-focus on this long-term threat to the wellbeing of our communities and take bold action.”

To contribute to the Climate Action Fund, or for more information, contact Pat Morden, sunsetcommuntyfoundation@gmail.com.

CONSERVATION DINNER

The Conservation Dinner charitable auction is online in 2022 so patrons won’t be together in one hall this year but they can still enjoy a dining experience and support their community at the same time. The Conservation Dinner Committee is bringing back the “Dining for Your Community” program, for the second straight year, in partnership with local participating restaurants. The Dinner Committee invites people to “dine for your community” in order to “support local projects one meal at a time.

The 2022 Virtual Conservation Dinner online auction begins on Thursday, March 31 and ends on Thursday, Apr. 7, at 9 p.m. Some participating local restaurants will donate some proceeds from special feature entreés during specific dates of the online auction week. As restaurants offering these special fundraising meals are announced, information will be shared on the event’s restaurants page. To learn more visit: https://conservationdinner.com/restaurants/.

Dave Frayne is Chair of the Conservation Dinner Committee. He says the Conservation Dinner auction event is online but people can still enjoy fine dining while supporting their community at the same time.

“You can support local community conservation projects and your local businesses by buying these special, restaurant feature dinners,” he said. “I want to thank all the restaurants which took part last year and I encourage them and other restaurants to be involved this year.”

The Dinner Committee and local dining establishments partnered on this program for the first time in 2021. Nine local restaurants took part. The participating restaurant determines which special entreé they plan to offer; the amount of proceeds to be donated to community projects of the Virtual Conservation Dinner for each one sold, and the date and times this special feature will be offered. The Dinner Committee publicizes the restaurant’s participation through local and social media; websites; social media; and livestream TV and Internet broadcasts.

Even when large in-person events are not possible the need to raise funds remains, according to the Dinner Committee. The Conservation Dinner is a partnership of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation and Exeter Lions Club. This dinner and auction charitable fundraising event started in 1990. Net profits are split evenly between community conservation projects of the Foundation and community conservation projects of the Exeter Lions Club. The event has raised more than $1.255 million for the community over more than 30 years.

The Committee invites the public to order these special meals and take them home to enjoy their home-version ‘Conservation Dinner’ while bidding on great items at the online auction. People may call 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or visit conservationdinner.com and abca.ca to find out more about the online auction, the Virtual Conservation Dinner entreés, and other ways to support the community.

COUNTY RELEASES HOMELESSNESS REPORT

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(Graphic courtesy County of Huron)

The County of Huron continues to work diligently in addressing the complexities associated with homelessness, poverty and housing instability in Huron County, and implementing both immediate and long-term solutions. In an effort to keep the community informed, actions currently being taken to prevent and address homelessness in Huron County are presented below.

“The County is taking proactive action on multiple fronts to prevent and address homelessness in our community,” said Huron County Warden Glen McNeil. “This Report to the Community represents a collaborative effort by the County and many community organizations who are committed to working together to protect our most vulnerable citizens. On behalf of County Council, I thank everyone involved in these efforts.”

Cold Weather Emergency Shelter Reopening: In 2020, the County of Huron partnered with Choices for Change, CMHA Thames Valley Addiction & Mental Health Services, and Lakeshore United Church to provide the Out of the Cold: Heart to Home emergency shelter. The shelter reopened on November 15, 2021, for the 2021/2022 season and is managed by staff specially trained in trauma-informed care, substance use, and mental health services. It is able to accommodate up to 15 individuals per evening and offers meals and additional wrap-around supports.

Enumeration and By Name List: Data collection, including identifying who and how many individuals and families are experiencing homelessness in the community, enables Huron County social service staff and partner organizations to monitor progress and make informed decisions. The 2018 enumeration project indicated that Huron had 100 individuals experiencing homelessness at that time. Enumeration findings in November 2021 counted 169 individuals experiencing homelessness in Huron County. It is important to note that this point-in-time count represents the minimum number of people experiencing homelessness in the region. Read the County’s Everyone Counts report: www.huroncounty.ca/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/EveryoneCounts_2021Enumeration.pdf for more details about the 2021 homelessness enumeration and By Name List project.

Stability Team (Huron Heart to Home): The Stability Team members are staff from County of Huron Social and Property Services, Choices for Change, and the Canadian Mental Health Association, who work directly with individuals in crisis, connecting them to the services and support they require. These staff are specially trained to assist individuals and families in crisis and/or facing housing instability. Since the re-opening of the Out of the Cold emergency shelter in 2020, 16 individuals have been successfully, permanently homed with assistance from the Heart to Home Stability Team. This team is continuing their efforts in the 2022 season.

Communications: Social and Property Services staff work with the County’s Communication Team to keep the public and stakeholders informed. Be Part of the Solution, an education and awareness campaign was launched in 2021. Being part of the solution means becoming informed and advocating for preventing and addressing homelessness in Huron. To learn more visit: www.huroncounty.ca/social-services/housing/#homelessness.

Coordinated Access: Social and Property Services staff have taken the lead and are partnering with multiple agencies and not-for-profits to provide a coordinated system of care in Huron County. To better coordinate services, a Homelessness Task Force was established in July 2020 and a Huron County Homelessness Coordinated Access System is currently under development.

Homelessness Prevention: Homelessness diversion and prevention is the primary goal. The County maintains 415 rent-geared-to-income units and offers a variety of tenant and landlord programs designed to help keep individuals facing housing instability in their current homes.

Financial Support: Social and Property Services staff administer multiple funding programs to assist in the prevention of homelessness including but not limited to: Ontario Works; Pathways to Self-Sufficiency; Canada Housing Benefit; and the Urgent Relief Funds, in partnership with Perth-Huron United Way.

Supportive Housing: County of Huron staff are working to explore supportive housing requirements and funding opportunities that align with the County’s Long-Term Affordable Housing and Homelessness Plan: www.huroncounty.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Housing-HomelessnessPlan-1.pdf

The County is working towards the creation of a dispersed, or scattered-site, model of supportive housing. In a ‘scattered-site’ model, single units are dispersed among multiple buildings or properties in multiple communities. This method of supportive housing offers significant integration opportunities within the broader community and allows the individual greater opportunity to remain in their preferred community.

Find out more about what the County is doing to prevent and address homelessness in Huron at www.huroncounty.ca.

Learn more about how a Housing First model can prevent and address homelessness in Huron at https://connectedcountyofhuron.ca/heart-to-home

HURON PERTH PUBLIC HEALTH SHARES OMICRON UPDATE

On Feb. 24, Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) shared that the COVID-19 Omicron wave continues to move through Huron Perth, along with the rest of Ontario. The number of new infections, percent positivity of tests, hospitalizations, and outbreaks are declining.  The return to in-person learning on Jan. 17 and the lifting of some restrictions on Jan. 31 and Feb. 17 has so far not led to a significant rebound in new cases.

Because of these positive trends, the provincial government continues its cautious, planned, lifting of additional public health measures.  However, while public health measures ease and people are able to resume more activities, HPPH reminds everyone that COVID-19 is still circulating in the community at high rates.

“The actions that have been taken over the past two years to control COVID-19, and most recently the Omicron wave, have been effective at saving lives, slowing virus transmission, preventing more outbreaks from occurring, and maintaining hospital capacity,” said Medical Officer of Health for Huron Perth, Dr. Miriam Klassen.  “We also know that the public health measures have had adverse mental health, social, and economic impacts.  I appreciate the sacrifices that people have made during this very challenging time.”

“The goal as we move forward will be to reduce disease burden to a level that our healthcare system can manage, with minimal public health measures in place. It is important to remain cautious as we reach for that goal,” she added.

The province lifted additional public health measures, such as proof of vaccination requirements for select indoor settings, on March 1. However, several public health measures, such as screening and the use of face coverings, will continue past March 1. Further information can be found at https://covid-19.ontario.ca/public-health-measures.

HPPH also continues to review the Section 22 Orders, Letters of Instruction (LOI) and Letters of Recommendation (LOR) issued during the pandemic. These documents are issued when circumstances in Huron-Perth require HPPH to go beyond provincial direction. Section 22s, LOIs, and LORs are aligned with provincial direction where possible and rescinded when possible.  Recently, the Letter of Instruction to Places of Worship and the Letter of Recommendation to employers, businesses and organizations have been rescinded; provincial direction remains in place.

All HPPH Section 22s, LOIs and LORs, along with information on if they have been rescinded, are listed at hpph.ca/Section22OrdersAndInstructions.

It’s important to continue provincial direction on public health measures such as wearing masks and staying home when sick, as well as measures such as washing hands frequently and ensuring ventilation of indoor spaces (opening windows). HPPH urges caution for those who are at higher risk of severe outcomes, as well as those who have loved ones at higher risk:

  •       Older populations
  •       Those with underlying health conditions
  •       Those who are unvaccinated

Vaccination is the best defence against COVID-19 and a key part of the longer-term management of the virus.  Individuals who are not vaccinated remain at much higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19.  HPPH urges everyone eligible to get vaccinated as soon as they are able.  On Feb. 18, Ontario expanded booster dose eligibility to youth aged 12 to 17.

As of Feb. 21, HPPH and partners have administered 292,181 vaccine doses in Huron Perth.  Eighty-four percent of Huron Perth residents aged five and older have received at least one dose of vaccine, and nearly 81 percent are fully vaccinated with two doses.  In addition, 61 percent of residents aged 18 and older have received three doses of vaccine. While older adults in Huron Perth have very high vaccination rates, coverage among those under the age of 60 is lower compared to Ontario as a whole.

For the month of March, HPPH is offering COVID-19 vaccination clinics in many smaller communities across Huron and Perth.  HPPH expects to scale back its vaccination clinics in April and beyond while ensuring Huron Perth residents are aware of local vaccination opportunities.

All clinics are family-friendly and welcome eligible individuals aged five and over for first, second, and third/booster doses.  The majority of clinics accept both appointments and walk-ins.

To see the latest vaccination opportunities and upcoming clinic dates and locations, visit www.hpph.ca/GetVaccinated.

PUBLIC HEALTH

The Huron Perth Public Health website is updated regularly with confirmed case counts received.

“Our online case reporting is not a real-time tool but is meant to keep the community informed on trends we are seeing,” explains Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Miriam Klassen.

For the latest statistics on COVID-19 cases in Huron and Perth Counties and also the percentage of people vaccinated please visit: www.hpph.ca

HEALTHCARE ALLIANCE

With the Province set to ease a number of public health measures effective March 1, including the requirement to show Vaccine Passports when entering venues such as restaurants and gyms, the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) will continue with current COVID-19 safety precautions.

“Clearly, we are all pleased to see the easing of public health measures and welcome the positive impacts these changes will have on individuals, businesses and communities,” said Andrew Williams, president and CEO. “However, as a health care institution that continues to regularly care for COVID-19 patients, we need to exercise caution and will therefore continue to require proof of vaccination status for family, caregivers, visitors and contractors, with some exceptions. Our COVID-19 Immunization Policy for midwives, physicians and staff will remain in full effect.”

HPHA’s Family & Caregiver Guidelines can be found on the HPHA website at www.hpha.ca/visiting. These guidelines will be assessed at the end of March when the impact on hospitalizations due to the easing of public health measures can be evaluated.

The Ontario Science Table’s COVID-19 Modeling is predicting an increase in hospitalizations as public restrictions are lifted; hospitals have been directed to ensure that they have capacity to accept transfers within 24-48 hours. With specific consideration placed on community transmission, bed occupancy, ICU capacity and human resources, the HPHA will be gradually and cautiously increasing Surgical Services to 70 per cent of 2019 volumes in the coming days. As these and other services are reintroduced, priority will be given to individuals who have waited the longest.

“This is an important step in our COVID-19 Recovery Plan and we look forward to moving to full capacity as soon as it is responsible to do so,” added Williams. “Our Team continues to provide exemplary care and support and I want to acknowledge and thank them for the professional and compassionate manner in which they have conducted themselves throughout the pandemic. Like everyone across our communities, they continue to step up.”

MENTORING NEWCOMERS

A new Huron-Perth project is seeking volunteers to assist new residents to Canada. Volunteers will mentor new Canadians and temporary foreign workers as they settle in rural communities in the region.

“Social isolation has been particularly difficult for people who are new to Canada and live in our rural communities during the COVID-19 social restrictions,” said Sheila Schuehlein, Research chair of Rural Health Coaching at Gateway Centre of Excellence in Rural Health. “This project seeks to equip volunteers with the skills to support rural newcomers in our communities.”

Volunteers will take part in a webinar training series where they will learn to build connections, offer appropriate support, and develop tools to become agents of change in their communities.

Following the training, volunteers will be invited to join a peer support pilot program to assist new residents in Canada.

People who have lived experience of immigrating to Canada, and have settled in Huron, Perth, Lambton or Middlesex Counties, are urged to volunteer. Training sessions will be facilitated using digital technology.

“Rural loneliness and social isolation are significant challenges faced by many in Huron and Perth Counties. Newcomers and temporary workers in Huron and Perth face the added difficulties of language barriers, precarious work conditions, and ineligibility for government support, further compounding the challenges of isolation,” explained Kristin Crane of the Huron County Immigration Partnership.

“Volunteerism is at the heart of our community,” said Huron County Warden Glen McNeil. “Efforts like these inspire intentional acts of kindness, build the social fabric of our communities and improve the well-being of both the new residents to Canada and the volunteers too.”

To sign up to take the volunteer training, please visit connectedcountyofhuron.ca/newcomer-volunteers

ONE CARE

The winter season can be a difficult time for seniors, and with the pandemic, the challenges of loneliness and isolation are even greater. Thanks to kind-hearted volunteers, ONE CARE Home & Community Support Services is able to support local seniors and people with health challenges through a wide range of services. As the demand for their services increases, so does the need for volunteers.

ONE CARE supports thousands of people living right in the community with the help from volunteers who donate their time through essential programs such as Meals on Wheels – a service that is imperative to the independence and wellbeing of seniors who are isolated and people with health challenges. Last year, ONE CARE delivered over 50,000 well-balanced, affordable meals to homes across Huron County and the Stratford area. This service would not be possible without the support from local community members, and ONE CARE needs volunteers to make meal deliveries in Clinton and Goderich areas.

ONE CARE volunteers include a wide range of people including families, retirees, and business professionals such as real estate agents Erin Wilson, of Coldwell Banker, and Jeff Bauer, of Royal LePage Heartland Realty. Wilson and Bauer say they see firsthand the difference ONE CARE’s services make to people living right in their community, and know that their delivery also serves as a wellness check, as they may be the only person that client sees in a day.

“We are so appreciative of those local businesses who are supporting their employees to give back to their community by volunteering with ONE CARE,” said ONE CARE Executive Director, Kathy Scanlon. “We are happy that our services are able to meet many needs and that, through us, others can also care for people in need. We are grateful to be part of such a caring and thoughtful community.”

Volunteering is a great way for businesses to get involved in their community, and ONE CARE encourages workplaces to support their employees by allowing flexibility in their schedule so they can help. Delivering Meals on Wheels over the lunch hour is one example of how they can give back during the work week. To help ensure meals are being delivered to those who rely on this service while the agency recruits volunteers, Huron & Area Search and Rescue (HASAR) has generously stepped in to make deliveries. HASAR also supported ONE CARE back in 2020 at the beginning of the pandemic when the demand for this service increased significantly.

For more information regarding how to volunteer with Meals on Wheels or other services such as Transportation, Friendly Visiting, or Telephone Reassurance, call 1-877-502-8277 or email volunteering@onecaresupport.ca.

BAYFIELD ACTIVITIES

Now that the community is slowly moving toward group activities the creators of bayfieldactivities.info have completed a recent update and refresh on the website. People are once again invited to refer to this website to learn what activities, from Pickleball to Majong, are happening and when.

REMEMBER THIS

The Huron County Museum is home to thousands of artifacts that illustrate the history of both the rural and urban populations of the area. Space dictates what wonderful curiosities the public regularly gets to see when they visit the museum located at 110 North Street in Goderich. But where there is wifi, there is an opportunity to time-travel with over 3,000 pieces of the museum’s collection now available to view online at huroncountymuseum.pastperfectonline.com.

“Remember This” highlights items from the collection of the Huron County Museum and Historic Gaol. Items that have shaped the fabric of the county and the people who have lived here since before the county became the county in 1835 up until more recent times.

Just as women’s rights have evolved over time, so have their fashion choices. In celebration of International Women’s Day, upcoming on March 8th, we look at some of the undergarments in the Museum’s collection that were popular at the end of the 19th century and start of the 20th century…

BUSTLE

This is a women’s wire frame bustle with leather waist belt.

This is a women’s wire frame bustle with leather waist belt. It is labeled, “Empire Braided Wire Bustle – Pat’D. April 13, 1888 – Brush and and Co., Toronto”. A bustle was used to add fullness, or support the drapery, at the back of women’s dresses in the mid-to-late 19th century. Bustles were worn under the skirt in the back, just below the waist, to keep the skirt from dragging. The heavy fabrics of the time period often pulled the back of a skirt down, flattening it as a result.

BRASSIERE

BRASSIERE This is a hand-sewn, pink, silk crepe, woman’s brassiere. It has an elastic waist and small bow on the front. It was made around the 1900s.

This is a hand-sewn, pink, silk crepe, woman’s brassiere. It has an elastic waist and small bow on the front. It was made around the 1900s.

UNDERSKIRT HOOP

This is a woman's underskirt hoop made of wire and cotton
This is a woman’s underskirt hoop made of wire and cotton. There are ten wire circles attached with five straps of cotton fabric. The fabric gathers to a waist belt. It was worn under a skirt to add volume.

BRVTA

TRACKS IN THE SNOW HIKE HELD ON FAMILY DAY

A winter storm delayed the “Tracks in the Snow” hike at Windmill Lake Farm on Feb. 19, by two days. but the weather cooperated on Feb. 21, making it a true Family Day event!

Twenty-five people took part in the walk around the lake and enjoyed a loop through the forest on the look-out for animal tracks under the direction of George Ebers. Visitors saw the tracks of small birds, wild turkeys, squirrels, coyotes and deer along the route as well as some evidence that beavers were hard at work prior to the lake freezing. They also got a sneak peek at an 1860s Sugar Shack that Ebers has restored for future use in Maple Syrup harvesting in addition to an incredible view of the Bayfield River from above.

The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) are hosting two more hikes during March as well as helping with a third as the month comes to an end. All hikes are open to the public and pets on leash with no pre-registration required unless otherwise noted. On the trails, masks are optional when distanced and the vaccination status of hikers is not checked.

Celebrate BRVTA’s third annual International Women’s Day (IWD) Hike and the 111th IWD by joining in a hike along Bayfield’s Woodland Trail on Sunday, March 6th. IWD celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The hike will begin at 2 p.m. with hike leaders Annerieke VanBeets and Ralph Blasting. They will stop along the way to share stories of how Canadian women have contributed. Friends, partners, families, and individuals of all sizes, shapes, and gender identities welcome. The hike is 3.5 km and will last about 90 minutes. The Woodland Trail has some steep inclines and challenging passages, and may still be icy in March. Participants are asked to meet/park at the David Street trailhead. A map can be found by visiting: www.bayfieldtrails.com/woodland-trail

On Saturday, March 19, community members are invited to join Denise Iszczuk, of the Ausable-Bayfield Conservation Authority, to explore the functions of the Morrison Reservoir, one of the area’s most attractive hiking routes, during the “All About the Morrison Reservoir” hike. The hike will be about 2.5 km and last about 90 minutes. Families and youth are especially welcome. Participants are asked to meet/park at 71042 Morrison Line, at the pavilion. A map can be found at abca.ca/conservationareas/morrisondam/.

A special “Candlelight Memorial Walk” has been scheduled for Saturday, March 26 starting at dusk along the Taylor Trail in Varna. The BRVTA members in collaboration with Huron Hospice and other Bayfield volunteers will create an enchanted walk through the beautiful 1 km Taylor Trail, starting at 7 p.m. For more details please see the article posted earlier in this issue of the Bayfield Breeze.

For more information on any event, contact hike coordinator Ralph Blasting at rjblastingjr@gmail.com or 519-525-3205.

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(Photo by Don Munro)

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(Photo by Don Munro)

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(Photo by Don Munro)

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(Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

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(Photo by Don Munro)

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(Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

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(Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

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(Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

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(Photo by Don Munro)

PIXILATED

 IMAGE OF THE WEEK

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North Pier Glacé, Feb. 20…By Andrei Shevchuk

Submit Your photo

Email your photo in Jpeg format to hello@bayfield-breeze.com with the subject line Subscriber Photo of the Week. or…Upload your photo to Flickr.

I am looking for the Bayfield that is a delight to the eye – please share photos with a touch of whimsy, beauty, humor or a sense of fun. If you are to include people in your photos be sure to have their permission to publish their picture on-line and also send in their names and where they are from. And don’t forget to tell me who took the photo for proper credit to be issued.

SUBMISSIONS

Image of Melody Falconer-Pounder

Melody Falconer-Pounder

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For Ukraine…By Melody Falconer-Pounder

A little girl, with a pink, LOL-themed blanket draped around her shoulders made me cry the other day.

The little girl of about seven or eight is Ukrainian. She was wearing her warmest clothes – a pink winter coat with a faux-fur trimmed hood. I imagine she was holding tight to her LOL blanket more for comfort than warmth. Earlier in the day, she, and her slightly older brother, had said goodbye to their father who was trying to get them to the Hungarian border. It was there that they could reunite with their mother, who had been in Italy when the Russians invaded. The father had been turned back as all Ukrainian men aged 18-60 had been called to defend their homeland. It was at that moment that a stranger stepped forward and said she would take the children to the border. It was the moment when the children were reunited with their mother that I watched as someone recorded their tearful, hug-filled reunion and posted it to social media.

Watching this event unfold, imagining the strength it took for the father to let his children go with a stranger and the courage that stranger had to complete her mission; realizing that scenarios like this are playing out all across the Ukraine, well, it was the first time in a while I’ve let the world into my heart that deeply.

For you see, my granddaughter is seven. She too has a pink winter coat and she also has a passionate, long-standing love for all things LOL. – Melody

 

 

Ideas and contributions to the Bayfield Breeze are always welcome.
Deadlines for submissions are Sundays at 4 p.m.