The Chatham Voice, Feb. 17, 2022

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Pam Wright/The Chatham Voice

The ice is nice at Peers Wetland and Daniel Fraleigh of Wallaceburg has been taking full advantage of the smooth surface to sharpen his hockey skills. Fraleigh was spotted wearing a Boston Bruins jersey wearing bearing former hockey star Phil Esposito’s number 7. While many local hockey enthusiasts take to frozen creeks and ponds, the municipality will explore the possibility of establishing an outdoor rink in Chatham next winter.

Outdoor rink for C-K next year?

By Pam Wright Local Journalism Initiative

An outdoor municipal skating rink could be coming to Chatham-Kent next winter. Thanks to a motion put forward by South Kent Coun. Anthony Ceccacci at the Feb. 7 council meet-

ing, administration is investigating the feasibility of creating a rink. “I’m not asking for anything extravagant,” Ceccacci told council in response to the motion, adding he’s hoping a plan can be formulated that’s affordable and easy to assemble. Chatham Coun. Michael

Bondy said he “whole heartedly” endorses the idea. They are a “ton of fun” Bondy said, adding he’s built one for his children in his own backyard for the past 18 years. Some councillors expressed concern that Chatham-Kent’s warm winters won’t allow for much

usage. Concerns about monitoring usage of a rink were also expressed. The report is expected to come back to council in June. Staff is also being asked to see if any companies or businesses would be interested in naming rights for the rink.

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Back to Step Two By Pam Wright Local Journalism Initiative

Step Two of Ontario’s Roadmap to Re-Open begins Thursday. Ahead of the original timetable, officials are hoping this time is the charm. Premier Doug Ford also announced that vaccine passports are done March 1. Ford made the announcement on Valentines Day, citing falling COVID-19 rates, hospi-

talizations, vaccination compliance and fewer ICU admissions as the reasoning behind lifting restrictions. “This is great news and a sign of just how far we’ve come together in our fight against the virus,” Ford said in a statement Monday. However, he added a cautionary note. “While we aren’t out of the woods just yet, we are moving in the right direction,” Ford said. Continued on page 2

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‘Pay close attention to the numbers’: Colby

mond St. in Chatham. Chatham-Kent’s mediChatham-Kent Health cal officer of health also Alliance is also gearing expressed caution of the up for change as the Minearlier than expected roll- istry of Health has indiback. cated all Ontario hospiDr. David Colby said tals may resume surgical he’s paying heed to the and other procedures at recommendations made up to 70 per cent of 2019 by Ontario’s COVID-19 volumes. Science Advisory Table. As part of the return to “We need to pay close at- normal, CKHA president tention to the numbers,” and CEO Colby exLori Marp l a i n e d , “People are just shall said adding de- not interested in the day surcision-mak- restaurant business geries will ing must anymore. Because of resume this reflect how all the shutdowns, peo- week. COVID-19 Marshall cases are ple had to switch gears said the ali m p a c t i n g and find other jobs.” liance must the health- - Thomas Smith still be precare system. pared to Another big change in accept patient transfers the wings is the closure of from outside the municithe mass vaccination clin- pality. ic at the Bradley Centre. The hospital still continAs of March 3, it is being ues to have employees relocated to 730 Rich- who were redeployed Continued from page 1

from the surgical program to deal with the last COVID-19 wave. How the hospital moves forward will depend on staffing and the availability of beds, Marshall said. Local business owner Thomas Smith of Gentry Manor says he’s looking forward to welcoming back the public, albeit in a different way. Smith said the loss of staff being experienced by the restaurant industry across the board has altered the operation of Gentry Manor’s Small Plates restaurant. “I don’t foresee us getting back to the same level,” Smith said Monday, adding the availability of wait staff just isn’t there. “People are just not interested in the restaurant business anymore,” he said. “Because of all the shutdowns, people had to switch gears and find other jobs.” However, Smith said Small Plates is planning

Contributed image

While the provincial government will soon be lessening pandemic-related restrictions, don’t throw away that mask just yet.

on offering a “travelling the world” international cuisine event on a monthly basis, as well as opening the patio when the warm weather returns. As for the vaccine passport, Smith said he simply plans to follow the rules.

“We won’t need it by the time we reopen the patio,” he added. A slew of public health measures will be eased Feb. 17, including allowing 50 people at social indoor gatherings and 100 outdoors. In terms of public events, a total of 50 people will be allowed indoors, with no limit outdoors. Capacity limits in a variety of indoor public settings, including restaurants, movie theatres and casinos, are being removed as long as proof of vaccination is provided. Fifty per cent capacity at sports arenas and concert venues is also legislated, and limits at indoor weddings, funerals and religious services are gone as

long as proof of vaccine is shown, or if physical distancing can be maintained. Also, as of Feb. 18, the province is expanding vaccine booster dose eligibility to youth aged 12 to 17. The removal of vaccine passports will go forward, the government said, provided public health system markers continue to improve. And while Ontario will no longer require proof of vaccines for all settings, businesses can ask to see them if they wish. However, masking safety protocols will remain in place. For more information access

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Free PSW training bears fruit locally By Pam Wright Local Journalism Initiative

Sarah Mardling wanted to be a personal support worker since she was 16. Now, thanks to a provincial initiative that provided free training, the 44-yearold Chatham-Kent native has achieved her dream. “I’m so thankful for the program,” the newly minted PSW said recently. “I love what I do…when you love what you do it’s not like work.” Mardling is one of 109 personal support workers enter the workforce as part of a $2.5-million Ontario government program that began training recruits one year ago. The initiative is now bearing fruit as students across the region wrap up their studies and finish off co-op placements. The success of the project was celebrated last week with an in-person gathering at the Wallaceburg Library. Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton was on hand with other officials to mark the occasion. McNaughton, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development, said the program is filing a void.

“Across our province, there is a need for more PSWs to help take care of those in our community who need it most,” McNaughton told the gathering. The inaugural Grow Your Own HSW-PSW Partnership Program was offered in Lambton and Essex counties, as well as the Municipality of Chatham-Kent. All told it involved 26 long-term care homes and other health-care companies. Participants were paid by employers for their work through the duration of the program with most heading into full-time jobs where they worked. Students attended online classes through SE Career College of Health, worked in placements and completed job shadowing as part of their training. The program also helped out with some extra costs, such as childcare, to provide support to students. Matt Keech, project manager of Chatham-Kent’s employment and social services division, said several Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support recipients also took part in the program. Keech said each student was assigned a case

Pam Wright/The Chatham Voice

A provincial program that provides free training and supports to educate new personal support workers across the region is bearing fruit. The $2.5-million project began a year ago and 109 new PSWs are now set to join the workforce. Celebrating the milestone at the Wallaceburg Library are Sarnia-Lambton MPP Bob Bailey; Lambton-Kent-Middlesex MPP Monte McNaughton, Ontario’s Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development; newly minted PSW Sarah Mardling; and Chatham-Kent Mayor Darrin Canniff.

manager who helped with troubleshooting and “wrap-around” supports. “We wanted to see everyone achieve their goal,” Keech said. “They (students) definitely had their challenges, but with help were able to push through.” Upon completing the program, the new PSWs are able to earn a living wage, leave government supports behind, plus fill positions where workers are desperately needed. Mardling, who now lives in Windsor, is working for ParaMed as a PSW delivering home care. The former stay-at-home




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mother of three, who had lenges of going to school tor’s office,” as sometimes one child with a host of made all the difference, life got in the way of getdisabilities, said her new she said, adding it helped ting a post-secondary edjob combines her two fa- keep her on track. ucation. vourite things: driving “I had a lot of ups and “Life, kids, relationand helping others. downs, especially with ships…that was all part “I like being able to be computers,” Mardling of it,” Mardling said, althere for people and be noted. though she did manage their strength,” Marding “There were several to get her high school diexplained of her role. “I times I said I might as well ploma by going to night like to be their eyes and quit and drop out, but school when she was still ears and being able to with encouragement I was a teenager. speak out for them. able to keep going.” Mardling had started a “If they need help, I like From being a young position with ParaMed to get them help and infor- mom to handling an ill as a health support workmation.” child, Mardling said she er, when she was recomHaving extra supports “almost lived in the doc- mended for the program. to help h e r A Warm, Accessible Space to Say Good-Bye meet t h e chal-

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Councillors up their own wages Councillors will now make $36,900 per year By Pam Wright Local Journalism Initiative

Chatham-Kent’s next council – to be determined in this fall’s election – will see an increase in pay when they take the oath of office. At its Feb. 7 meeting, council voted 10 to 8 to raise the annual honorarium for its 17 councillors by $2,937 to $36,900. The yes vote included West Kent Coun. Melissa Harrigan; South Kent representatives Trevor Thompson and Clare Latimer; Wallaceburg councillors Carmen McGregor and Aaron Hall; Chatham’s Brock McGregor, Marjorie Crew and Karen Kirkwood-Whyte; North Kent Coun. Joe Faas and Mayor Darrin Canniff. On the no side were Chatham councillors Mike Bondy, Doug Sul-

“I don’t really understand how this pay raise – because frankly that’s what it is – is for the next council. I really don’t think this is the appropriate time considering how many people are struggling.”

man and Amy Finn; East Kent councillors Steve Pinsonneault and John Wright; North Kent representative Jamie McGrail, West Kent’s Mark Authier; and An- - Coun. Michael Bondy thony Ceccacci, councillor for municipalities, includSouth Kent. ing Essex and Lambton The vote followed a de- counties. It recommendtailed presentation made ed increases be made by a volunteer citizen’s across-the-board to keep review committee com- Chatham-Kent current prised of Chatham and with other municipaliDistrict Chamber of Com- ties, as well as providing merce President and CEO incentive for people who Gail Hundt, Derek Mc- might not otherwise have Givern, president of D.C. the opportunity to run for McGivern Associates and council. former Chatham-Kent Hundt told the meeting councillor Bill Weaver. it’s a very difficult deciThree municipal admin- sion for elected officials istrators provided sup- raise the honorarium as port as well. they are “looking at themThe report compared selves.” Chatham-Kent council However, Hundt said honorariums to 12 other council is making a de-

cision to compensate “councils of the future.” While some of the councillors voiced support for the increase, others didn’t see it that way. Bondy said it didn’t seem right for council to raise the honorarium only five days after raising taxes 2.79 per cent. “I don’t really understand how this pay raise – because frankly that’s what it is – is for the next council,” Bondy said, adding the decision should be made after the election. “I really don’t think this is the appropriate time,” Bondy said, “considering how many people are struggling.” Faas said he supported the increase, because councils of the past have had to play catch-up. Both Hall and Ceccacci said it’s a decision that should be made by the current council. Both said it puts a new council in an awkward position if they have to make a decision on the

honorarium early in their term. Pinsonneault said he couldn’t support an increase as so many people “are struggling with their day-to-day expenses.” Kirkwood-Whyte advised councillors that if they didn’t feel right taking the money, they can donate it to a charity of their choice. Harrigan who put the motion to approve the report forward, said that one of the conversations that’s muted in public service is the mental health and well being of members of council, citing communication from the public that needs to be taken “with a grain of salt.” The money for healthcare supports acknowledges this, Harrigan added, noting “we can’t be good leaders if we are

not healthy and well ourselves.” Elected officials will now receive a $1,200 annual allowance to be used for health-care needs, such as insurance, physical therapy or counselling. Mayor Darrin Canniff will also see a boost to the mayor’s training allowance, up $2,043 to $5,000 a year – even though he himself voted against it. The motion was approved in a 13-5 vote. However, the mayor’s annual wage will stay the same at $116,747. The combined increases will add $79,688 to the 2023 base budget. The combined councillor honorarium totals $54,324 while the combined health-care allowance equals $24,321. Councillors voted 12 to 6 in favour of the healthcare spending.

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A rich decision On Feb. 2, the budget committee of council passed the budget, declining raises that would have addressed inflationary pressures for this year. What a difference five days makes. On Feb. 7, enough of them, 10, opted to pump up their salaries after the next election, rubberstamping a citizen’s committee proposal to increase their pay by nearly $3,000 a year to $36,900. The mayor’s $116,747 salary will remain unchanged. His salary is for a full-time position. As for the part-time councillors, their pay is enough to make many full-time employees who work in the private sector in Chatham-Kent, let alone part-timers, salivate. In other words, nice work if you can get it. For councillors who claim this is a full-time job for them, they’re making in excess of $20 per hour based on a 35-hour workweek. For those who spend say 24 hours a week serving their constituents, that salary translates to nearly $30 per hour. Our minimum wage is $15 per hour. We are still in the middle of a very challenging pandemic that is hammering local small businesses. Every scrap of savings, including off property taxes, is appreciated and needed. Very few local small business owners hike their own pay during the COVID-19 pandemic, with many dipping into their savings to keep things afloat, while others had to shutter their businesses. Yet here we are seeing councillors increase their pay. The optics, quite honestly, stink. We realize they are pointing to Nov. 15 – the point in time when the 2023-26 council takes office. But how many of the 17 councillors will benefit from that decision to crank up the pay? Most times, turnover is marginal on council. The pandemic may burn a few more out, but expect to see at least half of council back in office in late November. A massive amount of municipal spending is tied to salaries overall. We urge council to count the pennies and think of the average citizen when rubberstamping any raises in the near future. Aren’t we all in this together?

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Support personnel go above and beyond Editor: There is a saying that to every cloud there is a silver lining, and I have been privileged to see the truth of that in my own life this past year. The “cloud” was my husband Jim’s diagnosis of vascular dementia in March 2021 at 71 years old. He accidentally died seven months later at 72, but in the interim, I was privileged to be connected to a large network of support personnel, which otherwise I would have had no idea existed. It is an amazing community we live in and these people were truly the “silver lining” to my “cloud.” I wish I could thank people individually by

name, but I hope those reading this who were involved will see themselves and know how much they are appreciated. Thank you to our police force who had to be called to our home on a few occasions because Jim became quite aggressive due to his dementia. Not only did they treat Jim with respect and dignity in a chaotic and upsetting situation, but they also demonstrated kindness and concern for my well being. Thank you to the PSWs (Personal Support Workers) from Care Partners and Bayshore. They always treated Jim with cheerfulness and profes-

sionalism, and made sure he was well taken care of. This thanks also extends to the O.T.’s, P.T.’s, social worker and wound care nurse who shared their areas of expertise with me and thus relieved a lot of my anxiety in caring for Jim. I sensed at times some of the workers were tired themselves as they often worked long hours, but it never affected their quality of service. The list would not be complete without mentioning the fire department and the paramedics; I don’t have words large enough to thank them for everything they did to try and save Jim’s

life when he fell. On just a bit of a tangent, I want to close by thanking ALL the staff of Medicine A at the CKHA. A few days after Jim’s death, I was hospitalized for COVID. Even thought it’s been more than three months since I was in the hospital, I still reflect on their encouragement and stellar skills which enabled me to overcome COVID under difficult circumstances. I doubt there is a finer group of people who work tirelessly to help patients get well. Kudos to everyone I’ve mentioned and my ‘forever’ gratitude. Nancy Kostuk Chatham

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Frosted robins

CKPS light on women in leadership roles sion and specifically the Wallaceburg Police SerCKPS,” Conn said. “His- vice. Three years later, the torically as well as cur- Dresden native joined the The Chatham-Kent police rently, females and BIPOC newly created CKPS post recently promoted veteran have always been under- amalgamation. Cowell was also the Const. Renee Cowell to a represented in the policsergeant’s position, mak- ing profession, and CKPS first female member of the Critical Incidence Reing her one of just four is no exception.” Conn said there is no sponse Team (CIRT) and women on the service at the rank of sergeant or special hiring process to in the Forensic Identificapromote women in the tion Unit. higher. She said regardless of Three – Cowell, Lynette service; all such advancewhere her career takes her Hodder, and Cathy Gra- ments are based on merit. “Our promotion process in terms of rank, her goals ham – are at the sergeant level, while Kate McAr- is based on an extensive remain the same. scored procedure which is “My goal has always thur is a staff sergeant. broken into three been, and will continue Cowell has been phases and takes to be, to serve and protect a cop for more into account a our community with honthan 25 years. Her multitude of vari- our, integrity and courmove to sergeant ables such as On- age. I enjoy being out in will take her out tario Police Col- the community, so any of community lege exam, CKPS position that allows me and media relad e p a r t m e n t a l to work with community tions and see her exam, educational partners and mentor our oversee a platoon level, supervisory youth through events or of officers. Her assessments, op- recruiting sessions would first shift in that Renee Cowell erational work ex- be a positive step forward role was Feb. 10. perience the can- in my career,” she said. Hodder, the eqThere is no other place uity, diversity and inclu- didates personal file and Cowell would sion co-ordinator with the promotional inrather be than service, is adding media terview,” he said. The police serC-K. relations to her portfolio. “I love the fact Police chief Gary Conn vice has 32 female that I grew up said there is a dearth of fe- officers out of a of here and am now male officers with the ser- compliment raising my chilvice, something he hopes 164, meaning fewdren in a comone of Hodder’s jobs will er than 20 per cent are women. Conn munity where work to rectify. I have so many “(The position) was cre- said that’s just befond memories,” ated to focus on a specific low the national problem that is currently average of about Lynette Hodder she said. “Staying close to my being faced by many po- 21 per cent. As for Cowell, she is family was a priority for lice services across Canada: the lack of female, moving up exactly where me, in that being a police officer, you need a strong black, indigenous, and she wants to be, C-K. Cowell’s policing career support system and I have other people of color (BIPOC) recruits applying began in 1995 as a fresh- that here in Chatham-Kent to the policing profes- faced constable with the with family and friends.” By Bruce Corcoran

Goldie Howes/Special to The Chatham Voice

These robins, spotted recently in a backyard on Maryknoll Road in Chatham, might be reconsidering their decision to return to Chatham in the middle of winter. Robins typically return in numbers about a month later when the weather turns warmer more consistently.

Bridge work ahead The Chatham Voice

The Clachan Road Bridge over the Thames River in East Kent will shut down for months due to construction. Municipal officials said

McLean Taylor Construction will close the bridge for rehabilitation work starting Feb. 28. It is slated to reopen sometime in the fall. A detour comprised of Chatham-Kent roads and

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Province commits to new treatment centre for C-K By Bruce Corcoran

Jubilee Chorus seeks singers The Chatham Voice

The organizers of the Jubilee Chorus are looking for more voices. If you have Tuesday evenings free and have an interest in singing, they hold rehearsals, beginning Feb. 22, at St. Andrew’s United

Church from 7-9 p.m. Safety protocols will be in place, vaccination required, and masks must be worn. Call Cynthia at 226-229-1533 if interested or needing more information.

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The Ontario government recently re-announced funding for the Children’s Treatment Centre of Chatham-Kent (CTCCK), but it’s much more than that. This according to Mike Grail, chair of the board for the Foundation of CTCCK. “They had it in the budget last year, but COVID pushed it back,” he explained. “So, we’re ecstatic. We’ve seen them come through with funding for some initial testing to get things rolling with planning, but in addition, they’ve purchased the property. This is not just a verbal commitment; this is actually going to happen.” The CTCCK provides services to more than 3,500 children and youth with special needs. It ran out of room at its existing facility in north Chatham several years ago, and announced plans to expand. Local fundraising took place, a new site on McNaughton Avenue West was secured, and all that was left was the provincial commitment. That took several years to nail down, but it is now in place. Grail said while there is no timeline on when construction will begin, progress is being made. “All of the proper groundwork is

being completed. But we still have no timeline on when the first shovel hits the ground,” he said. “For a lot of our donors it’s been three or four years now since we’ve been able to give them any solid information. Now we can update them and let them know their dollars are going to be used shortly.” Grail added the province has agreed to the 55,000-square-foot new building and even increased funding to ensure it is state-of-theart. “A modernized and expanded Children’s Treatment Centre will reduce our waiting lists and provide the right space to fully develop the skills and abilities of children with developmental, communication and physical needs so they can successfully participate in the community. We are thrilled and very appreciative of the commitment announced by the ministry in supporting our goal of Celebrating Abilities and Developing Potential,” CTCCK executive director Donna Litwin-Makey said in a media release. “The new Children’s Treatment Centre demonstrates our government’s commitment to children and is fantastic news for our community,” Monte McNaughton, MPP for Lambton-Kent-Middlesex, said.

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Coldest Night walk set for Feb. 26 By Bruce Corcoran

Get ready for a chilly walk by people with warm, giving hearts on Feb. 26. In an ongoing effort to raise awareness of the plight of Chatham-Kent’s homeless population, as well as assistance funding, supporters will trek in the Coldest Night of the Year (CNoY) event. Al Baker, Chatham-Kent NeighbourLink Network co-ordinator, and organizer of the CNoY event locally, said participants have already raised $33,000 en route to the goal of $50,000. Baker said more than 130 walkers have registered. “We are still accepting donations and participants,” he said. “More than 100 people have said they will attend in per-

son, an option we didn’t have last year.” The event, which Baker said has been taking place since 2017, is actually growing despite COVID-19. Last year, it took place virtually, for the most part. Baker said he did show up to the start/finish area organizers had established, but he was the only one there, as participants opted to walk on their own time at their convenience. “Last year, it was all virtual. Everyone walked independently. This year, we’ll have a gathering, but it will still take place outside,” he said. In the past, where there was a hot meal awaiting finishers, this time around, there will be hot chocolate and granola bars. Such is the reality of pandemic restrictions. “That’s still ahead of last

year,” Baker said. In 2021, participants managed to top $50,000 in fundraising, despite the remote participation. This year, taking part virtually is still an option, but for anyone wanting to enjoy the participatory atmosphere of the event, the start/finish area has moved compared to previous years. It will begin and end at the former St. Agnes School, the future site of Indwell’s supportive housing complex for Chatham. Baker said the route for walkers is still the same, heading to Grand Avenue, then up St. Clair Street, across Oxley Drive and down Sandys Street, for a five-kilometre trek. Baker said everyone gathers at 4 p.m. to take part. He said he understands if people would rather

walk on their own instead of attending on walk day, given the ongoing pandemic. “We offer both. We hope to please everyone,” he said. Baker is not surprised the event has continued to grow despite the COVID-19 pandemic. For starters, the pandemic only exacerbated Chatham-Kent’s homeless issue. As well, restrictions limited what people could do. “The thing I really like about it (the event), especially during the pandemic, is walking is one of the few things we can all do,” he said. “This gets everyone out of the house after being cooped up, have fun and raise money for a worthy cause.” Funds raised go towards operating the NeighbourLink program locally, providing assistance to

File photo

Anthony and Catherine Roberts, son and mother, take part in the Coldest Night of the Year walk last year. The fundraising event for NeighbourLink Network raised more than $50,000 in 2021 and returns Feb. 26.

those in need. The organization offers free transportation for medical appointments, banking, and groceries. “Since the pandemic began, we’re also heavily into food delivery – for the infirm and those who

can’t get out,” Baker said. He added January was a “crazy” month for food, as inflation has seriously impacted people on social assistance. To register visit cnoy. org/location/chatham-kent.

February 23, 2022

Rick Nicholls, MPP Chatham-Kent-Leamington

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New leadership, same commitment

By Pam Wright Local Journalism Initiative

Its founders are stepping down, but the work of a local charity devoted to Mother Teresa’s vision will continue. After 15 years, John and Sandra Van Raay will no longer serve as president and vice-president of the Chatham-Kent chapter of Canadian Food for Children. The couple has put heart and soul into the organization, but now want to spend more time with their grandchildren and great grandchildren. They have no regrets about the time they’ve invested helping children on the other side of the

world. “It’s been a joy to me to have been able to do what we have done,” Sandra said recently, noting the charity has fed children and donated supplies to countries in Africa and South and Central America. “Our main focus is carrying on Mother Teresa’s work overseas, as well as helping locally,” John added. Founding the group was part of answering God’s call, the couple said, and the charity also provided an opportunity for others to do so. The local group’s mission to feed the people Mother Teresa called the “poorest of the poor” had humble beginnings.

Its first home was in the basement of Blessed Sacrament Church. Today it has 50 volunteers and occupies a 5,000 sq.-ft. warehouse on Inshes Avenue. The space is chock full of a wide array of donated goods ranging from kitchenware to shoes to sewing machines. Locally sewn items are another part of the goods that are shipped overseas. Incoming vice-president Heather Slavik co-ordinates a group of volunteers who knit and sew hundreds of items for the impoverished. Between volunteers in Chatham, Kingsville and Wallaceburg, Slavik said the group has produced more than 1,500 dresses

Pam Wright/The Chatham Voice

Chatham-Kent’s chapter for Canadian Food for Children has new leadership after its founders stepped down from the top spots. New president Cindy Bonvarlez Waddick and new vice-president Heather Slavik are shown here with outgoing leaders Sandra and John Van Raay.

and around 1,000 trousers

This Pink Shirt Day, let’s lift each other up In 2007, two boys from Nova Scotia took a stand against local bullies and started a movement. When a classmate in their high school was harassed for wearing a pink shirt on the first day of school, David Shepherd and Travis Price decided to do something about it. The teens bought over 50 pink shirts and handed them out to their classmates, creating a “sea of pink” in support of the boy who’d been bullied. That was the first Pink Shirt Day, an event that has since made its way across the country and is now recognized on the last Wednesday of February every year. Here are seven ways we should all strive to treat each other every day. 1. Be kind. Treat everyone with kindness and empathy, regardless of how you feel about them. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect, even those you don’t like. 2. Be inclusive. Make it a point to be friendly with everyone you know, even the people who are different from you. You’ll make others feel good and could even make an unexpected friend. 3. Check in. If you know that someone in your life has recently gone through a hard time call or text periodically to make sure they’re doing okay. 4. Listen. Be a sounding board for friends who need to talk. However, don’t offer advice unless they ask for it. Sometimes, people just need to share what they’re going through in order to come up with their own solutions. 5. Think before you speak — or post. Sometimes we can hurt people without meaning to. Before you say or post something on social media, think about how others may perceive it, and keep your comments to yourself if you think someone might be hurt by them. 6. Don’t gossip. Though it’s easy to get drawn into discussions about other people, these types of conversations are best avoided. Even if what you say isn’t meant to be hurtful, it’s unkind to discuss others without their knowing it. 7. Speak up. If you see someone getting bullied, don’t just stand there and watch. Instead, say something. Most bullying incidents stop within ten seconds of someone intervening. Bullying in schools is an ongoing problem, but teaching young people how to treat others is a step in the right direction.

for children and youth.

Continued on page 13

Please put a STOP to bullying

~ We support this message ~

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Home sales dip slightly in January The Chatham Voice

Chatham-Kent realtors had a busy January, selling 102 units in the month, but it was down four sales from January 2021. Still, sales were up about 21 per cent above the fiveyear average and 42.5 per cent ahead of the 10-year average. Amber Pinsonneault, president of the Chatham-Kent Association of Realtors, said prices are still high. “Average price levels continue trending at or near historical peaks as demand remains incredibly strong due to many

people relocating from larger city centres,” she said in a media release. “This contributes to the fact that listing levels are at their lowest ever. With market tightness unlikely to see any relief in the near future, it will be interesting to see what, if any, impact rising rates will have once spring begins.” New listings continue to rise, but just not enough to offset interest. They were up 7.4 per cent ahead of the five-year average as 105 new homes came on the market in the month. Despite being ahead of the five-year curve, the

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new listings were 14 per cent below the 10-year average for January. At the end of the month, there were just 62 homes

on the market, down slightly from a year ago. The active listings were 51.8 per cent below the five-year average and 78.1

per cent below the 10-year average for the month of January. With the low inventory, demand remains

high. The average price of homes sold in January 2022 was $457,160, increasing by 26.5 per cent from January 2021.

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Transformation Team has been chosen as one of five finalists in the 2022 Tech Awards, powered by TekSavvy.

Voting for the contest runs until Feb. 18 at noon. You can cast yourvote by accessing the WEtech Alliance Facebook page.

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4 new docs for CKHA The Chatham Voice

Four new physicians have been added to the roster at the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance. The new hires include Dr. Samar Tabl, who joins the anaesthesia department; Dr. Brent Herritt, who is taking on a role in critical care; general surgeon Dr. Juan Arminan Cordies; and hospitalist Dr. Asad Naeem. CKHA chief of staff Dr. Pervez Faruqi said the hospital is pleased to welcome the new doctors. “Their skills, knowledge and expertise will enhance our delivery of patient and family centred care,” Faruqi said in a media release. Tabl earned a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery and PhD from Ain Shams University in Cairo, Egypt. She then worked in Cairo as an anaesthesiologist before moving to Canada to complete her anaesthesia residency at Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon, followed by an obstetrics anaesthesia fellowship at Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto in 2015. Tabl went on to work at an anaesthesiologist in Saskatchewan for six years, while also serving as an assistant professor at Queen’s University. Born and raised in St. Johns Nfld., Herritt attended Memorial University where he received a Bachelor of Science and his Doctor of Medicine. He went on to complete

his internal medicine residency at the University of Ottawa and also completed a fellowship in critical care medicine. Herritt also has a strong interest in research and medical education and has been credited in critical care journals across North America, as well as spending five years as a lecturer at Memorial University. Herritt will be heading up the CKHA Intensive Care Unit. A Cuban native, Cordies completed his Doctor of Medicine in Havana. He went on to complete a general surgery residency and an upper GI/MIS/ Bariatric Fellowship at the University of Calgary in 2017 and 2018 respectively. Most recently, Cordies completed locums throughout Alberta and in the Northwest Territories. He will begin accepting referrals this month. His office will be located at 146B Queen St. in Chatham. After growing up in London, Naeem attended Western University and received a Bachelors degree, Honours Specialization in Commercial Aviation Management in 2013. He then earned his Doctor of Medicine from the University of Medicine and Health Sciences, St. Kitts, graduating with the highest honours in 2017. Naeem has spent the past three years completing his family medicine residency training at Southern Illinois University of Medicine.




Frozen in time

Mary Beth Corcoran/Special to The Chatham Voice

High wind coated the landscape with ice in Erieau recently, as the wind drove the spray from the crashing waves onto the rocks and shrubs in the area.

C-K’s vaxx clinic moving The Chatham Voice

The end is near...for the COVID-19 vaccination clinic at the Bradley Centre. It’s moving to the former YA site on Richmond Street, west of Keil Drive. The Bradley Centre is to see its last jab issued Feb. 23, while the new

site, at 730 Richmond St., is to open March 3. CK Public Health, the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance and Chatham-Kent EMS have been operating out of the Bradley Centre site for nearly a year. “Our final day at the Bradley Centre Clinic, Feb. 23, will mark exactly

one year in operation there!” Carina Caryn, CK Public Health program manager, said in a media release. “We are very grateful to have had such an ideal location to serve the public out of, and are fortunate to have found a new location just down the road where we can continue to do so.”

some 25 countries supported by the CFFC. The Chatham-Kent group has shipped an average of 10 transport truckloads of goods per year. The Canadian Food for Children agency was founded in 1985 by Dr. Andrew and Joan Simone, and St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta. The Chatham-Kent chapter began in 2006. The Van Raays became involved

when Sandra was the youth co-ordinator at Blessed Sacrament Church. Youth from the church took an interest in the CFFC and Chatham-Kent’s involvement grew from there. The new leadership team includes new president Cindy Bonvarlez Waddick and Slavik. Francine DeMeyer will continue as secretary, along with treasurer Marvin Merritt.

Charity sees new leadership

Continued from page 12

“The people who knit and sew humble us,” Slavik said. In January 2022 alone, CFFC sent three 25-foot truckloads of goods – including desks and chairs donated by the St. Clair Catholic District School Board – to a Mississauga warehouse. Between 10,000 to 15,000 lbs. of non-perishable food, such as beans, peanut butter and powdered milk that are locally sourced are included in each transport load as well. The items are then bundled in shipping containers and sent to

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Community Events Thursday, February 17, 2022: • Come join us at the Chatham Moose Lodge, 850 Richmond St., for lunch every Thursday and Friday from 11:00am to 1:30pm. Everyone welcome. • Join Family Service Kent in celebrating Random Act of Kindness Day! Perform a simple act of kindness for someone and share it on social media. Make sure to use the official hashtags: #CKindness #MakeKindnessThe Norm #RAKDay. Today’s kindness idea: Celebrate the day with your co-workers, friends or family. Simply do something nice for someone and ask for nothing more than for that person to pay it forward. Spread the word! Friday, February 18, 2022: • The Chatham Legion,corner of William & Colborne St. Chatham is open for take-out meals only from 4:00pm - 6:00pm. Supper will be served from 4:00pm - 6:00pm. No orders after 5:30pm. Tonight’s specials are lasagna or fish & chips. $12.00 tax included. Please call 519-351-8733 or 519-351-5639 after 11:00am on Friday. We apologize for the inconvenience. • Friday night supper at the Chatham Moose Lodge, 850 Richmond St will be a salisbury steak dinner with potatoes, vegetable, salad and a bread roll for $12 for dine-in and $13 for pickup. Please call daily from 1:00pm to 4:00pm at 519-3528291 to place your order. Everyone welcome. • Happy Friday! If you want to feel good, doing good is a great place to start. Being kind can go a long way toward improving your emotional wellbeing. Helping others and being kind not only contributes to the happiness of others, it can also help us to feel happier ourselves. Studies have shown that when we do kind things it literally gives our brain a boost, activating its ‘reward centre’ and that feels good. Today’s Kindness Idea: How does kindness bring about connection? Acknowledging another person in a positive way makes the receiver feel valued, establishing a connection. Think of someone who brings joy and happiness into your life. Call, text or write them and let them know their shine brightens your life. Saturday, February 19, 2022: • Morning Breakfast Program at First Presbyterian Church (corner of Fifth St. and Wellington). A delicious nutritious breakfast served free of charge from 9:30am-11:30am. This will be a TAKE OUT only. • Amid the challenges of the pandemic, there is a greater reason to become a kindness superspreader. Random acts of kindness aren’t only meaningful to the receiver - there


Fun Stuff

are science-backed health benefits of being kind to others. What’s more, these acts of service can also offer extra emotional support during the pandemic. Doing something nice for others helps you feel more connected with others, which helps strengthen a sense of belonging and community. Today’s Kindness Idea: Keep Going! Become a part of the kindest community by joining RAKtivists (Random Act of Kindness Activists) group. Even though our official kindness celebrations ends today, you don’t have to stop being kind! Commit to doing one small act of kindsness each day and help make kindness the norm! Sunday, February 20, 2022: • Join us for a cooked to order breakfast at the Moose Lodge, 850 Richmond St from 9:00am - noon. Everyone welcome. Tuesday, February 22, 2022: • IT’S TIME TO SING! Got Tuesday nights free? Then come and check out Jubilee Chorus and help make a joyful noise unto the Lord! Rehearsals begin on February 22 at St. Andrew’s United Church (85 William St. S, Chatham), 7 – 9 pm. Safety protocols will be in place, vaccination required and masks must be worn but that won’t dampen the fun and joy of being together making musical memories happen! New in town, or still unsure? That’s ok, try us for a week, see how it feels. Call Cynthia at 226-229-1533 if interested or needing more info. Established in 1961, Jubilee Chorus is a mainstay in the Chatham-Kent area and known for its great repertoire, family atmosphere and polished performances. Come, you’ll be glad you did! Friday, February 25, 2022: • The Chatham Legion,corner of William & Colborne St. Chatham is open for take-out meals only from 4:00pm - 6:00pm. Supper will be served from 4:00pm - 6:00pm. No orders after 5:30pm. Tonight’s specials are liver & onions or fish & chips. $12.00 tax included. Please call 519-351-8733 or 519-351-5639 after 11:00am on Friday. We apologize for the inconvenience. • Our dinner at the Moose Lodge, 850 Richmond St, will be chicken cacciatore over egg noodles with salad and a bun. $12 for dine in at 5:30pm or $13 for drive through pickup at 6:00pm. Call daily from 1:00pm-4:00pm to place your order. 519-352-8291 Are you affected by someone else’s drinking? Al-anon can help! Call leave message - 519-350-3462 Submit your coming events to bruce@chatham­ or

CLUES ACROSS 1. Remain as is 5. Functional 11. News magazine 12. Popular treat 16. Area units 17. Artificial intelligence 18. Marten valued for its fur 19. Forms of matter 24. Home of the Dodgers 25. Bordering 26. Part of the eye 27. It might be nervous 28. Visualizes 29. Crest of a hill 30. Measures engine speed (abbr.) 31. Tears in a garment (Br. Eng.) 33. Not easily explained 34 Song in short stanzas 38. Detonations 39. Intestinal 40. EU cofounder Paul-Henri __

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Sudoku 9x9 grid, broken down into nine 3x3 boxes. To solve a sudoku, the numbers 1 through 9 must fill each row, column and box. Each number can appear only once in each row, column and box.

Answers found on page 15




Classifieds Anniversary

In Memoriam

70th Wedding Anniversary

Bill & Shirley Lamond

STERLING, Seville “Bib”

February 16, 1952

June 29, 1953 February 20, 2021

To US you were so special. We miss you more each day. The saddest day of our lives Was the day you passed away If tears could build a stairway And memories were a lane We would walk right up to Heaven And bring you home again.

Happy Anniversary with love your 3 children, 7 grandchildren & 12 great grandchildren

Love from Your Family


Thank You



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All claims against the Estate of Mark Michael McLaughlin, late of the Municipality of Chatham-Kent, who died on or about the 6th day of January, 2022, must be filed with the undersigned personal representatives no later than February 28, 2022, after which date the estate will be distributed having regard only to the claims of which the Estate Trustees then shall have notice. DATED at Chatham-Kent, this 28th day of January, 2022.


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Gerhard Neufeld 71, Friday, February 11, 2022 Kendrick Funeral Home

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Virginia McKinlay 74, Friday, February 11, 2022 Hinnegan-Peseski Funeral Home

Jeanette Quinn 97, Saturday, February 12, 2022 McKinlay Funeral Home

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Wren Victoria Noelle Dobbelaar Sunday, February 6, 2022 Nicholls Funeral Home

Patricia “Pat” Emmott 61, Tuesday, February 8, 2022 Life Transitions

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