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Around the District- Red Deer Public Schools

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Here’s a look at some excellent Christmas events taking place at schools throughout the district.

MONDAY, DECEMBER 11

EVENT: CHRISTMAS CONCERT

School: GW Smith Elementary?Time: 7:00 pm?Location: CrossRoads Church?Details: Families will gather for another amazing annual school Christmas concert.

Contact: Kim Falls at 403-346-3838

MONDAY, DECEMBER 11 – TUESDAY, DECEMBER 19?EVENT: PARENT COUNCIL CHRISTMAS STORE School: Normandeau

Time: Daily?Location: School?Details: The school council will be opening the Children’s Christmas Store, a place where children may purchase items for their loved ones at prices ranging from $1 to $8. This hopefully will help families with the added costs that Christmas always brings, while allowing the children to be a bigger part of the spirit of Christmas giving. The store is not a fundraiser as all proceeds directly fund this events. Contact: Doreen Wiesner at 403-342-0727

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12

EVENT: CHRISTMAS MUSICAL

School: Annie L. Gaetz Elementary?Time: 7:00 pm?Location: Memorial Centre?Details: Students in grades 1-5 will be performing in the Christmas Musical “I Need A Little Christmas Vacation” Contact: Moira Milne at 403-347-5660

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12

EVENT: FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT

School: Don Campbell?Time: 6:30 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: DCE students and their family are welcome to attend our first Family Movie Night, featuring “Despicable Me 3”. Tickets will be sold at the door and are $10/ family which includes a small bag of popcorn and a bottle of water per person. Chairs and benches are available for adults. Students may bring a pillow, stuffie or blanket to lie on. Additional popcorn and water will be available at a cost. All proceeds will go towards our Grade Five Camp.

Contact: Mellanie Kopec at 403-346-2611

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12

EVENT: WINTER BAND CONCERT

School: Westpark Middle?Time: 7:00 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: Sr. and Jr. Bands, students in grades 6-8, will perform pieces they have been working on.

Contact: Laurie Shapka at 403-347-8911

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: RED DEER PUBLIC SCHOOL BOARD MEETING?Time: 1:00 pm?Location: Central Service Office, Board Room Details: Regular school board meeting.

Contact: Cyndi Ramsfield at 403-342-3713

Around the District

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: REBELS VISIT

School: Annie L. Gaetz Elementary?Time: 10:30 am?Location: Various Classrooms within School?Details: Rebels come to visit the Kindergarten to grade 5 classes.

Contact: Lauren Dempster at 403-347-5660

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: WINTER FORMAL DANCE

School: Central Middle?Time: 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: Students will get into the festive season by attending a fun winter formal dance.?Contact: Nathan Good at 403-346-4397

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: KINDERGARTEN TO GRADE 12 WORSHIP TIME?School: Gateway Christian?Time: 9:45 am

Location: Main Gymnasium

Details: Grade 3-5 choir and Grade 7 Band will be sharing their gifts/talents with our school community.?Contact: Cathy McCullough at 403-346-5795

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: WINTER CELEBRATION

School: Hunting Hills High?Time: 7:00 pm?Location: School Gymnasium 2?Details: Music concert, art show, and dessert intermission featuring performances by Concert Band, Jazz Band, Rock Band, Drumline, and Steel Drum ensembles. Tickets are $10 each and can be bought at the HHHS Bookstore or at the Door.

Contact: Greg Wheeler at 403-342-6655 ext. 1313

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: CHRISTMAS CONCERT

School: Mattie McCullough Elementary?Time: 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm?Location: CrossRoads Church?Details: Mattie McCullough staff and students are proud to present their annual Christmas Concert, written by our very own Mr. Richardson!

December 11 – December 22, 2018

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13

EVENT: WPE CHRISTMAS CONCERT

School: West Park Elementary?Time: 6:30 pm?Location: New Life Fellowship Church?Details: Families will enjoy our annual Christmas concert with a “Slapshot Santa” theme.

Contact: Loretta Winia at 403-343-1838 THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14

EVENT: KINDERGARTEN NURSERY RHYME CONCERT?School: Annie L. Gaetz Elementary?Time: 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm

Location: School

Details: Students in Kindergarten will be performing Nursery Rhymes for family and friends.?Contact: Lauren Foord-Tait at 403-347-5660

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14

EVENT: DECEMBER GIFTS, A VERY SPECIAL CHRISTMAS CONCERT EVENT?School: Fairview Elementary?Time: 6:30 pm

Location: School Gymnasium

Details: A holiday musical including the joyous songs of the season.?Contact: Carol Macdormand at 403-343-8780

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15

EVENT: UGLY SWEATER DAY

School: Central Middle?Time: All Day?Location: Various?Details: Come to school sporting your ugliest sweater. Contact: Nathan Good at 403-346-4397

Contact: Lisa Spicer at 403-343-8958?For more information on AROUND THE DISTRICT please contact Bruce Buruma at 403-342-3708.

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15

EVENT: SENIORS’ HOME CHRISTMAS CAROLING TOUR?School: Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High?Time: 10:00 am – 3:00 pm

Location: Piper Creek Lodge, Parkvale Lodge, The Hamlets of Deer Park?Details: The LTCHS Chamber Ensembles will venture out into the community to spread some Christmas cheer to seniors in three locations around Red Deer. This is the fourth annual Christmas Carol tour and has become a highlight for the students performing in small ensembles.

Contact: Jennifer Mann at 403-347-1171, ext. 1704

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15

EVENT: CHRISTMAS READING

School: Mountview Elementary?Time: 10:15 am – 11:45 am?Location: Various Around School?Details: Special guests are invited in to read Christmas stories to each class in the school.

Contact: Amanda Wilson at 403-346-5765

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15

EVENT: GIFTS FOR GRANDPARENTS TEA

School: Westpark Middle?Time: 12:45 pm – 2:20 pm?Location: School Library?Details: Our leadership team has invited 23 grandparents to our Gift for Grandparents Tea, to celebrate the holidays with treats, gifts and entertainment.

Contact: Kandis Langvand at 403-347-8911

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 19

EVENT: CHRISTMAS CONCERT

School: Aspen Heights Elementary?Time: 1:00 pm 7:00 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: Students and their families will enjoy the schools’ annual Christmas Concert

Contact: Dyane Wagar at 403-347-2581

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 20

EVENT: SCHOOL COUNCIL MEETING

School: Eastview Middle?Time: 7:30 pm?Location: School Library?Details: Monthly meeting of our School Council members to discuss what is going on in the school.

December 11 – December 22, 2018

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 20

EVENT: CHRISTMAS CARNIVAL

School: Normandeau?Time: 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: Everyone is welcome to come and celebrate the season with crafts and fun.?Contact: Teryl McDonagh at 403-342-0727

WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 20

EVENT: WPE CHOIR AT WEST PARK LODGE

School: West Park Elementary?Time: 1:30 pm – 2:30 pm?Location: West Park Lodge?Details: Westpark Elementary School’s choir will be spreading cheer and performing for the residents at the West Park Lodge.

Contact: Erin Heindel at 403-343-1838

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 21

EVENT: BW CHRISTMAS

School: Barrie Wilson Elementary?Time: 9:15 am & 6:15 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: We will be having two performances – one in the morning and one in the evening. Both concerts will be divided into three sections. There will be time between each set for parents to come and go. We encourage parents to consider viewing the morning performance. Both concerts will also be live streamed if you are unable to make it.

Contact: Sheila Engert at 403-348-0050

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 21

EVENT: CHRISTMAS AT GATEWAY

School: Gateway Christian?Time: 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm?Location: Various Around School?Details: Gateway Christian School invites Kindergarten to grade 12 families to this fun fulled family event. Celebrating the birth of Jesus as an entire school community while engaging in events that foster community.

Contact: Carolyn Stolte at 403-346-5795 or Crystal Pell at 403-343-2455

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 21 AND FRIDAY, DECEMBER 22?EVENT: TRICKSTER THEATRE PERFORMANCES School: GH Dawe

Time: Dec 21: 6:30 pm; Dec 22: 9:30 am?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: The theme in this Artist-In-Residency Program will be the 7 Leadership Qualities of Great Canadians. The performances and video essays will be created based on what Canada means to our students using the theme. Contact: Sue Carmichael at 403-343-3288

THURSDAY, DECEMBER 21

EVENT: ORIOLE PARK CHRISTMAS CONCERT

School: Oriole Park Elementary?Time: 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm?Location: Schools Gymnasium?Details: Come join us as our students celebrate the holidays with a variety of songs and performances. Contact: Mandy Terrenzio at 403-347-3731

December 11 – December 22, 2018

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 22

EVENT: CHRISTMAS SING-A-LONG

School: Mountview Elementary?Time: 1:00 pm – 1:45 pm?Location: School Gymnasium?Details: School wide sing-a-long.?Contact: Amanda Wilson at 403-346-5765

For more information on AROUND THE DISTRICT please contact Bruce Buruma at 403-342-3708.

 

 

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Addictions

‘Harm Reduction’ is killing B.C.’s addicts. There’s got to be a better way

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From the Frontier Centre for Public Policy

By Susan Martinuk 

B.C. recently decriminalized the possession of small amounts of illicit drugs. The resulting explosion of addicts using drugs in public spaces, including parks and playgrounds, recently led the province’s NDP government to attempt to backtrack on this policy

Since 2016, more than 40,000 Canadians have died from opioid drug overdoses — almost as many as died during the Second World War.
Governments, health care professionals and addiction experts all acknowledge that widespread use of opioids has created a public health crisis in Canada. Yet they agree on virtually nothing else about this crisis, including its causes, possible remedies and whether addicts should be regarded as passive victims or accountable moral agents.

Fuelled by the deadly manufactured opioid fentanyl, Canada’s national drug overdose rate stood at 19.3 people per 100,000 in 2022, a shockingly high number when compared to the European Union’s rate of just 1.8. But national statistics hide considerable geographic variation. British Columbia and Alberta together account for only a quarter of Canada’s population yet nearly half of all opioid deaths. B.C.’s 2022 death rate of 45.2/100,000 is more than double the national average, with Alberta close behind at 33.3/100,00.

In response to the drug crisis, Canada’s two western-most provinces have taken markedly divergent approaches, and in doing so have created a natural experiment with national implications.

B.C. has emphasized harm reduction, which seeks to eliminate the damaging effects of illicit drugs without actually removing them from the equation. The strategy focuses on creating access to clean drugs and includes such measures as “safe” injection sites, needle exchange programs, crack-pipe giveaways and even drug-dispensing vending machines. The approach goes so far as to distribute drugs like heroin and cocaine free of charge in the hope addicts will no longer be tempted by potentially tainted street drugs and may eventually seek help.

But safe-supply policies create many unexpected consequences. A National Post investigation found, for example, that government-supplied hydromorphone pills handed out to addicts in Vancouver are often re-sold on the street to other addicts. The sellers then use the money to purchase a street drug that provides a better high — namely, fentanyl.

Doubling down on safe supply, B.C. recently decriminalized the possession of small amounts of illicit drugs. The resulting explosion of addicts using drugs in public spaces, including parks and playgrounds, recently led the province’s NDP government to attempt to backtrack on this policy — though for now that effort has been stymied by the courts.

According to Vancouver city councillor Brian Montague, “The stats tell us that harm reduction isn’t working.” In an interview, he calls decriminalization “a disaster” and proposes a policy shift that recognizes the connection between mental illness and addiction. The province, he says, needs “massive numbers of beds in treatment facilities that deal with both addictions and long-term mental health problems (plus) access to free counselling and housing.”

In fact, Montague’s wish is coming true — one province east, in Alberta. Since the United Conservative Party was elected in 2019, Alberta has been transforming its drug addiction policy away from harm reduction and towards publicly-funded treatment and recovery efforts.

Instead of offering safe-injection sites and free drugs, Alberta is building a network of 10 therapeutic communities across the province where patients can stay for up to a year, receiving therapy and medical treatment and developing skills that will enable them to build a life outside the drug culture. All for free. The province’s first two new recovery centres opened last year in Lethbridge and Red Deer. There are currently over 29,000 addiction treatment spaces in the province.

This treatment-based strategy is in large part the work of Marshall Smith, current chief of staff to Alberta’s premier and a former addict himself, whose life story is a testament to the importance of treatment and recovery.

The sharply contrasting policies of B.C. and Alberta allow a comparison of what works and what doesn’t. A first, tentative report card on this natural experiment was produced last year in a study from Stanford University’s network on addiction policy (SNAP). Noting “a lack of policy innovation in B.C.,” where harm reduction has become the dominant policy approach, the report argues that in fact “Alberta is currently experiencing a reduction in key addiction-related harms.” But it concludes that “Canada overall, and B.C. in particular, is not yet showing the progress that the public and those impacted by drug addiction deserve.”

The report is admittedly an early analysis of these two contrasting approaches. Most of Alberta’s recovery homes are still under construction, and B.C.’s decriminalization policy is only a year old. And since the report was published, opioid death rates have inched higher in both provinces.

Still, the early returns do seem to favour Alberta’s approach. That should be regarded as good news. Society certainly has an obligation to try to help drug users. But that duty must involve more than offering addicts free drugs. Addicted people need treatment so they can kick their potentially deadly habit and go on to live healthy, meaningful lives. Dignity comes from a life of purpose and self-control, not a government-funded fix.

Susan Martinuk is a senior fellow at the Frontier Centre for Public Policy and author of the 2021 book Patients at Risk: Exposing Canada’s Health Care Crisis. A longer version of this article recently appeared at C2CJournal.ca.

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Community

$1,000,000 boost from province for upgrades at Red Deer’s Centre for Social Impact

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BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS OF RED DEER RECEIVES $1,000,000 CFEP GRANT IN SUPPORT OF THE CENTRE FOR SOCIAL IMPACT

Youth HQ is proud to announce that Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Red Deer and District has been awarded $1,000,000 through the government of Alberta Community Facility Enhancement Program (CFEP) for the purpose of facility upgrades to the Centre for Social Impact.

The Centre for Social Impact (CSI) is an inspiring place where charities and non-profits can
collaborate; a place centrally located where families can readily access a variety of supports and
services; and a place where organizations can share resources and minimize operating costs.
“We are grateful for the support from CFEP, which enables us to address facility enhancements
and upgrades in support of the charities and non-profits that share this place where community
connects.” States Rob Lewis, Executive Director, YouthHQ.

Board Room at the Centre for Social Impact. Priority upgrades are the roof of the building and the HVAC systems

“Investments into non-profits in our communities, like Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Red Deer
not only support new activities and programming but uplift youth and help build stronger
communities. Alberta’s government is proud to provide this million dollar grant to Red Deer Big
Brothers and Big Sisters, as they provide essential supports and services for the youth of Red
Deer and surrounding area.”

Tanya Fir, Minister of Arts, Culture and Status of Women

“The CFEP grant awarded to Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Red Deer and District is very
exciting news for Red Deer and surrounding communities. This substantial investment will
directly benefit our community by supporting essential youth programs, providing lasting
benefits for our youth in the years to come. I was happy to write a letter of support, as I am
continually inspired by the work Youth HQ does in our community. This grant will undoubtedly
enhance their ability to make a positive impact.”

MLA for Red Deer-North and Minister of Health, Adriana LaGrange

Conferencing area at the Centre for Social Impact. Priority upgrades are the roof of the building and the HVAC systems

For more information on the Centre for Social Impact please visit www.youthhq.ca

About Big Brothers Big Sisters of Red Deer and District

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Red Deer and District enables life-changing mentoring relationships
to ignite the power of young people. Providing life changing mentoring experiences since 1976,
Big Brothers Big Sisters has been matching children and youth with adult role models who help
them achieve their biggest possible futures. We believe we are #BiggerTogether, and currently
work with over 220 young people to ignite their potential.

About Youth HQ

Youth HQ empowers youth by fostering a community of support. Our network seeks to instill
young people with confidence in their unique identities and abilities, providing them with skills
for life through knowledge, healthy relationships, and quality experiences while providing safe
environments to learn and grow. Youth HQ coordinates programming for Big Brothers Big
Sisters of Red Deer & District and Boys & Girls Club of Red Deer & District, offering numerous
programs and services that support children, youth and families.

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