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CHARITIES

Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2012

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OF NORTHERN BC A Bi-Annual Report 2013

What do we do with your gifts?


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Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2013

Jumpstart changes that. “The Jumpstart program was really great for me, they supported me every step of the way, and I’m grateful that I was able to continue playing” – Fredrico

100% of your donation

stays in

YOUR

community

by Jumpstart in the Fort St. John Community

last year since inception in 2005

“ You remain anonymous, criminals don’t!” Who can you call when you witness a crime, or have information about a crime but are worried you may be hurt or can’t come forward to the police: CRIME STOPPERS - 1.800.222.8477. We have been operating in Northeast BC (Fort St. John, Hudson’s Hope, Chetwynd, Tumbler Ridge, Dawson Creek, & Fort Nelson, plus all areas surrounding) for 24 years. Our phone line is open 24/7 and is monitored remotely by trained, knowledgeable and security cleared staff. We are part of a provincial, national, and international team assisting the Police. We are linked to provide or receive information from anywhere in the world. CRIME STOPPERS is a civilian-based organization that is made up of concerned citizens who want to make a difference in their community. We assist the police in solving crime by providing another source for information to reach the police. Your information is received through a secure network and disseminated to the investigative agency or body that requires it. Our Police Coordinator/Detachment Liaison reports back to the Board the results of the investigation and if warranted a reward may be given to the Tipster. All Board members are Security Cleared to handle sensitive information. We are a Canadian registered Charitable organization that is able to offer a Donation receipt. The funds that we receive are used to pay our rewards to the Tipsters, promote our program, and for any training that our Board Members require. To achieve this goal, for the past 14 years we have depended on our annual Golf Tourney to raise funds. This year our Tourney will be held on June 14 at the Lone Wolf

Golf Course. We greatly appreciate all who have supported us in the past and look forward to your continued support in the future. In 2014 we will be celebrating our 15th Golf Fundraiser and our 25th year in operation! In the past with information we have received the police have been able to solve arsons, thefts, sexual offences, provincial statute matters, assaults, drug matters, and murders. As we continue to grow and evolve we are now helping to publicize the issues surrounding Human TrafÀcking, Gang Crime, White Collar, & Computer Crime. CRIME STOPPERS International has recently adopted the following statements which we will assist them in implementing: CSI VISION: To help stop, solve and prevent crime, globally.

Visit your local Canadian Tire 9820 93rd Ave Thank you for your support and for helping give kids in our community a sporting chance!

To apply, donate or find out more information, please visit:

jumpstart.canadiantire.ca or call:

1-877-616-6600

CSI MISSION: To mobilize the world to provide information on crime anonymously. If you need further information then please contact cs8477@telus.net, or visit our Web page www.crimestoppersnebc.ca. Rick Ekkel, President Northeast BC CRIME STOPPERS

Statistical Report for British Columbia 2012 9201 Anonymous Tips Were Received in 2012. These tips helped police investigators to: Make 425 arrests

Recover 40 weapons

Clear 644 cases

Recover $1,704,311 in property

Lay 488 charges

Seize $21,607,767 in drugs


June 20, 2013

Northeast NEWS

DAWSON CREEK british columbia

start your alaska highway

JOURNEY HERE Visitor Centre 900 Alaska Avenue 250-782-9595

1-866-645-3022

Alaska Highway House 10201 – 10th St 250-782-4714

1-866-645-3022 Call the Visitor Centre to receive your

Free Travel Guide or view online at:

TourismDawsonCreek.com

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Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2013

The Literacy Society has been in Fort St. John since 1990 supporting adults who are studying to get trade tickets, learn about financial management, finish high school, prepare for the written B.C. Driver’s test, write better reports for work, or overcome a learning disability. Adult learners decide what they want to study and either bring coursework with them or our teacher designs a course of study to guide them towards with their goals. They are matched with trained tutors and meet within a flexible schedule that works for both tutor and learner: in the evenings, on weekends or during the day. Immigrants who want to improve their English language skills can join in beginner, intermediate or advanced ESL classes. A family literacy class is also offered 24 weeks of the year to Mums, who bring what they want to study, while childcare is provided for their young children.

The North Peace SPCA staff, volunteers and animals, would like to extend a heartfelt Thank You to the individuals, schools and businesses that donated and supported our 2nd Annual North Peace/ South Peace Community Challenge. All money raised during this fundraiser will stay in our respective communities to directly benefit the animals in need. Your contributions have truly made a difference and are deeply appreciated.

Salvation Army has been in Dawson Creek for over 65 years – We have a Church, Family Services and a Thrift Store. Family Services located at 1019 103rd Ave. provides a drop in Monday to Friday and has a Food Bank where those in need can get help. Bread and goodies are available daily for pickup by those in need. The food bank is open Monday to Friday 10-12 and afternoons by appointment only.

Over the past year the Literacy Society has helped 65 adults in Fort St. John, who use the programs as a stepping stone to help them get a better job, qualify for additional schooling, or improve their life-skills. We have continuous intake so learners can join our programs at any time throughout the year. All programs are free of charge, generously supported by the Government of Canada, Government of British Columbia, the United Way, Fort St. John Rotary, individual and corporate donors and fundraising activities.

On another note, the BC SPCA is seeking public input about pressing animal issues facing B.C. communities as it begins a strategic planning process to guide its programs and services from 2014 to 2018. We are really encouraging the public to take part in this short, 10 minute survey. The survey is located on the BC SPCA website at http://www.spca.bc.ca/news-and-events/news/ bc-spca-seeks-public-input-to.html. Please complete the survey and let us know your views. The BC SPCA honoured twolegged and four-legged heroes from across the province during its annual awards ceremony in Vancouver on May 31 and at its society AGM on June 1. We are thrilled to announce that our very own Candace Buchamer, pictured here, was awarded the “Staff Excellence Award” by the BC SPCA’s CEO Craig Daniell. Candace has been a dedicated staff member at the North Peace SPCA for 10 years, and has excelled at animal care and is well known in the community for her friendly, compassionate and helpful approach to those who are interested in adopting an animal. Way to go Candy!! We also want to congratulate the South Peace SPCA on winning “Branch of the Year” honors. We would like to make the public aware of a new service now available for individuals to report incidents of animal cruelty. To report an animal in distress (including wildlife), please call the toll free Animal Cruelty Reporting Hotline at 1 (855) 6BC SPCA (1-855622-7722). The call centre is open seven days per week from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. If this is an animal emergency outside of these hours, please contact your local police department or RCMP.

The Literacy Society has 25 volunteer tutors but need always exceeds demand, especially for math tutors. Tutor training takes place each fall and spring. While the names and exact circumstances have been changed, the following stories are illustrative of the many individuals who approach the Literacy Society: Michael is an adult with a learning disability. All through school he struggled with dyslexia, finally dropping out in Grade 9. Michael was recently accepted into a trade apprenticeship program. He contacted the Literacy Society and was matched with a tutor. Because Michael is working and attending classes during the day, they meet on weekends and in the evening to study the course material. Chung is a Chemical Engineer with 10 years professional experience. Chung and his family recently emigrated from China; he has Permanent Residency status but his long term goal is to become a Canadian Citizen. Chung approached the Literacy Society for help to improve his written English skills so he could write the Professional Engineer Association’s exam. Chung studied with a tutor once a week on the weekend. He also attended English-as-a- Second-Language conversation classes on Tuesday evenings. Chung was successful in passing the Engineering exam and now works as a Chemical Engineer for an oil and gas company. Mary dropped out of high school in Grade 10 and had two children before she was 21. Mary wants to finish high school so she can get into college and eventually become a counselor. She comes to the Literacy Society’s family literacy program twice a week, for 6 hours. Her children are on-site, participating in an Early Childhood Education program. The Literacy Society has registered charity status; all our programs are offered free of charge. The number of learners attending Literacy Society programs has doubled in the past 5 years, as people study to develop the essential skills necessary to participate fully in society and the local economy. For more information on our programs, on tutoring, or making a donation, please call 250-785-2110 or email info@fsjliteracy.ca

Fort St. John Literacy Society P.O. Box 6196, Fort St. John, B.C. V1J 4H7 Location: 10142- 101 Avenue Phone: 250-785-2110 Fax: 250-785-2127 email: info@fsjliteracy.ca

We have kids/youth programming which runs weekly, except through the summer. Friendship Group for people with disabilities meets at Family Services Friday night. A meal is part of the kids/teens/friendship group– so just feeding these groups means over 100 meals a week are given to hungry people. This doesn’t include the food that clients of the food bank obtain. Addictions referrals, missing persons, and emergency services, are some of the other services that are handled. Donations of canned food, garden produce or meat are all welcome at the food bank; good gently used clothing and household items are accepted at the Thrift Store. And you are welcome to join us for worship on Sunday mornings at 11:00. Captains Roger & Francie Lee; Lisa Mattson Family Services director; and the girls at the Thrift Store: Carol, Vanessa & Emily.

Salvation Army 1436 104 Avenue, Dawson Creek, BC 250-782-4812

The SPCA is serious about preventing animal cruelty and prosecuting those responsible as evidenced by the case described here. Brian Whitlock, the man who pleaded guilty to a vicious attack on his two-year-old German shepherd last year, was sentenced recently to a lifetime ban on owning animals, a 60day jail term and three years’ probation. Marcie Moriarty, chief enforcement and prevention officer for the BC SPCA, said the society is pleased with the lifetime ban, but is disappointed in the 60-day jail term handed down. “We feel that the six-month jail term recommended by Crown counsel, which did take into account Whitlock’s mental health issues, was more appropriate given the brutality of the attack.” Whitlock was charged with animal cruelty in December of 2012 following a BC SPCA investigation into the death of Captain, who was found wrapped in a bloody blanket inside a Vancouver dumpster on July 18, 2012. For the full story, please visit the BC SPCA website at http://www.spca.bc.ca/news-and-events/news/ captain-sentencing.html. We are often asked by visitors to the shelter if there is anything we need in the way of supplies that they could donate. Some things we could use are a commercial paper shredder, canned dog food (Pedigree) and cat food (Friskies), copy paper, brown paper towel for dispensers, sturdy dog toys, kongs, environmentally friendly cleaning products, large and heavy duty garbage bags, cat brushes and heavier duty leashes and collars. Of course, we will gratefully accept cash donations as well to help us cover wage expenses and other overhead costs. Finally, we are set to gear up for our annual “Paws for a Cause” dog walk which will take place September 8, 2013 in Fort St. John. We invite you to take part in this upcoming province-wide fundraiser as a walker, volunteer or as a vendor for the event. This is a fun and easy way to help improve animal welfare in BC. Spend the summer months collecting pledges and then join us on the 8th as we walk for the animals. Register as an individual or as a team online at www.spca.bc.ca/walk today! Please contact Rosolynn Kalb/ Branch Manager at 250.262.7595 if you are interested in sponsoring, participating as a vendor or donating to this event.

Salvation Army Family Services 1019 103 Avenue, Dawson Creek, BC

Thank you so much to Driving Force in Fort St. John for sponsoring this column.

Salvation Army Thrift Store 1021 103 Avenue, Dawson Creek, BC 250-782-8852

Proudly Sponsored by

Driving Force


Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2013

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We’re Big Brothers Big Sisters of Fort St John. We believe every child should have the opportunity to reach his or her full potential, both as individuals and citizens – that by doing so, they will not only do well, they will also do good.

Wal-Mart every year donates

We believe that by changing the course of young lives we can in turn be changing the course of a community’s future. That it could lead to eduction in poverty and unemployment or to safer schools and neighbourhoods, or even to a renewed optimism for growth.....that it could even lead to change on a broader, more far-reaching scale.

and raises money for local and national charities and non-pro¿t organizations. The staff and management come together as a team whether their hosting BBQs to raise the funds or asking people at the tills to donate. Some of the charities are listed below.

2012 Wal-Mart raised $3,250 for Red Cross.

In Fort St John, we currently offer Community Welcome and Baby Welcome programs but in the past with more Representatives we also offered the Bridal program, Bridal and Baby Showers, Business Professional Program and Grandparent visits/ Shower. We have won nationally within Welcome Wagon as Community of the Year and also the Baby Welcome Pauline Hill award. Welcome Wagon Representative have been responsible for collecting gifts from local businesses for the New Year’s Baby and we also have celebrated Leap Year Baby, First Baby Born in the new hospital in 2012 and the last baby born in the old hospital in 2012 and a few other memorable dates. Welcome Wagons head ofÀce supports our local hospital. Founded in 1930, Welcome Wagon visits are made on behalf of each community and its participating businesses to families moving into the community, parents on the arrival of a new baby, brides planning their weddings and also a special presentation for new managers, business owners and executives. Fort St. John began our All Service visits, being Community, Birth of Baby and Bridal Visits in 1963. We then started our Baby Welcome program at the hospital in 1977.

2013 for the Children’s Miracle Network $16,045 was raised.

Often referred to as “Canada’s Neighborhood Tradition” Welcome Wagon’s basic policy is one of service: service to the family and service to the community. An important part of each Welcome Wagon visit is the distribution of civic and community information on services available in the community.

2013 Wal-Mart raised $4,168 for Breakfast Clubs.

BREAKFAST

We are proud of our community connections and support local nonproÀt organizations. Welcome Wagon head ofÀce recognizes businesses with plaques and thank you letters for their commitment as a sponsor and many local businesses have been presented with the 10 year awards and some with 20 year awards. Anyone eligible for a Welcome Wagon visit is encouraged to phone the local Representative for further information and check our web site at www.welcomewagon.ca, look for us on Twitter and Facebook and watch us on YouTube. This is a free service.

CLUBS OF CANADA®

For nearly thirty years, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Fort St John has been making a positive difference in the lives of our community’s youth by developing and implementing a wide range of mentoring programs. One-to-one and group programs, for both in school and outside of school. Serving as role models, our mentors teach by example the importance of giving and giving back, of staying in school, and of having respect for family, peers and community. Each time we pair a child with a mentor or introduce a group of students to an in-school program, we start something incredible – a life-changing relationship built on friendship, trust and empowerment. Witnessing the transformation of a child into a conÀdent, concerned and motivated young person is a remarkable thing. Ushering them into adulthood, seeing them grow into a successful, responsible member of their community and society at large is even more satisfying. Proudly, it’s something our staff, volunteers and donors help bring about every day, and we’re very grateful for their generosity and support. Big Brothers Big Sisters offers a wide range of mentoring opportunities to meet the varied needs of volunteers, children and families.

Our Vision To work towards the goal of ensuring that every child in our community, who needs a mentor, has a mentor, while continuing to expand our services to meet the needs of the children living in the Fort St John area.

Our Mission To offer the youth of our community support and empowerment through our exceptional mentoring programs and the friendships of our caring, responsible volunteers. We are proud of our achievements and are committed to continuing to strive to be on the leading edge of the Big Brothers, Big Sisters movement in Canada, as well as working towards our goal of ensuring “that every child who needs a mentor, has a mentor”!

These are a few examples of how your local Wal-Mart

To join us in our mentoring movement or to Ànd out more information about our programming please call 250.787.9674 or email: fsjbbbs@telus.net

helps out the community and surrounding areas. 9007 96A Street Fort St. John 261-5544 Down(250) with Webster at Grizfest

We believe that opening a child’s eyes to what is – opens their mind to what could be.

Proudly sponsored by


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Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2013

Action BC Resource & Referral Service Society 8238- 100th Avenue, Fort St. John 250-787-1685 - Resources - Advocacy - Workshops

Abbeyfield House works to bring individuals and businesses from our local community together, while volunteers help create an affordable living option for our seniors. Abbeyfield is not a “care home,” but a facility that allows seniors to live life their way. It is a non-profit society, run by a volunteer board of dedicated people. Our only paid employees are our house manager and a part-time helper. The house manager provides well-planned meals and prepares them for the residents. However, the house is always in need of volunteers which include weekend cooks, cleaners, overnight security, grass cutters, people to shovel snow, musicians, fundraisers, ground keepers/maintenance and the list goes on. Those that selflessly dedicated their time make Abbeyfield the wonderful home it is. There is a large, open living room to lounge, play a board game or entertain guests. For those that enjoy their privacy, there is a library for reading or visiting. At Abbeyfield house we want it to be inviting, not only for the residents, but their families as well. Not only does Abbeyfield flourish because of its volunteers, but also because of our fundraisers. We do have a mortgage with a five-year plan to be debt free, and our home still has some needs such as a stair lift and a new floor for the kitchen and some worn out appliances that have to be replaced. We strive to be as self-sufficient as possible. Our fundraising efforts are numerous. We participate in the annual Rotary Mega Lottery, host garage sales, Christmas sales, raffle tickets as well as the annual Medieval Gala. Keep a lookout for our garage sale in September, Christmas sale in November and mark your calendars on Oct. 3, 2014 for our Medieval Gala that will be held at the Quality Inn in Fort St. John. We hope to see you there for an evening of good food and fun. All donations are taken with tax deductable receipts. If you are impressed by the work Abbeyfield does and you want to support us, we are always looking for helping hands. We are located just minutes away from the downtown core of Fort St. John and situated near a bus stop. We offer tours of Abbeyfield by request, it truly is a must see. Feel free to contact us; we would love to hear from you.

Telephone: 250-785-8381 Email: info@abbeyfieldfsj.org Online: www.abbeyfieldfsj.org

Proudly Sponsored by Homesteader Health.

- Employment Life Skills - Essential Needs Program - Information

Action BC Resource and Referral Service Society has seen many changes over the years, including the $4.5 Million implementation of the ABC Thrift Shop which has been our only source of funding for the past 8 years. Currently the ABC Thrift Store is operating beyond its capacity and parking is limited and often creates a hazard. In our present location there is no feasible solution to strollers, walkers and wheelchair accessibility. The Board of Directors is currently trying to generate enough funds to build a larger building, which would include full recycling capabilities and ofÀce space for counseling services, advocacy work. As well as the other small non-proÀt organizations, which have shown an interest. Our expansion would accommodate the many drop offs, expand our training resources to include persons with physical disabilities, a Resource Library, Video Conferencing and meeting rooms for public use.

$750,000 Land

With the current rental market it is more feasible to construct a building that meets all of the communities needs than it is to rent if we were able to Ànd a suitable building. By owning our own building it allows us to provide permanency and eliminate the need to further fundraise, as the proceeds from the Thrift Shop would cover the expenses, programs and operating expenses. Action BC Resource and Referral Service Society helps people in the community by guiding them through the legal systems, WCB, and we also have programs in place for families that are going through rough times. These are only a couple of things that we do as a Non-ProÀt Organization. Over 2,000 people are using the services that are provided. Every year this is growing by 30%. A new building would be a great beneÀt to the people of this community. - How to make an appointment for further information, building layout and programs contact us at 8238 – 100th Avenue, Fort St. John


Northeast NEWS

IMAGINE Imagine the Àrst day of school. There are a lot of things you need, but Mom and/or Dad cannot provide them this year. Imagine leaving your home in the middle of a dark night, gathering up your children and slipping away as silently as you can so as not to wake an abusive partner. You don’t know where you will go. Imagine being a youth, having troubles at school, needing someone to take a little more interest in you and help you face the adult world, empowering you to meet the challenges it will throw at you. These are just three scenarios people in our community face. Now imagine you have help to deal with them. Fortunately, and thankfully, due to the hard work of agency staff, and the care and generosity expressed by community members and businesses, there is help. There are fundraising activities being organized year round, all with one goal – to help the people of our community. For the child returning to school, there is a collection of new back packs and school supplies, which, through the help of the School District, is made available to those students that cannot afford to purchase their own. For the women and children escaping violent situations at home, there is a safe house they can go to, where they are provided shelter, transportation in and out of town, help to get to medical appointments, as well as child care. They will eat fresh garden vegetables donated by local gardeners and food stuffs donated on a regular basis. If it happens to be Christmas, it may be possible that a Christmas hamper is given as a gift. If it turns out that the family or woman needs to set up a new home when they leave the Transition House, they can access the Starter Kits provided by the Rotary Club, who purchases and stores these for the program. These kits provide the women with basic supplies needed to set up a home, such as towels, cleaning materials, etc. If they need clothing, they have only to dig into the racks of donated clothing items. If they need toiletries, they need only dip into the collection of shampoos, conditioners, mouthwash and soaps that are collected by employees of local organizations. Most recently, the family of a very lovely and well loved woman expressed their care for the women and children in their community by asking for contributions to the Mizpah Transition House in her name. The donations will be used to provide a playground area for the children staying at the House. For the youth that is struggling, there is a program that will help them reconnect to their family and resources. They can create a Resume on the computers donated by the Lake View Credit Union, which will help them Ànd work. They can learn to make meals through the Good Grub Food grant. They have a clean, safe place to meet due to the donation of materials and work which built a beautiful new facility in which to run the Reconnect program. They will be kept warm by the handmade gloves and toques made with care and concern. Every year a major fundraiser is held, the Little Black Dress Affair. This very successful event raises thousands of dollars, which are invested in all of the programs provided through South Peace Community Resources Society to enhance program delivery. This past year, a large portion of the funds raised was used to help build the Reconnect Youth facility. And just this spring, those pesky little pennies were put to good use, as a collection was made for the Children Who Witness Abuse programs. Hundreds of dollars were collected, which will be used to provide snacks for the children attending this program. Just imagine! What we can do with a little bit of time, energy, care and generosity!

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Our church is located at address below; services begin at 10:30 am every Sunday. If you do not have a church home we would love to have you worship with us. We are one army with one mission and one message that revolves around love and hope. The Thrift Store is a place where friendly staff will help you Ànd that treasure you are looking for. As a charity the Salvation Army Thrift Stores exist to generate funds to help support services offered by the Salvation Army to help our nations most vulnerable citizens. The driving force behind this mission is a commitment to recycle and reuse. Unwanted or gently used items are donated by individuals and businesses, giving items a second chance to Ànd greater use while simultaneously diverting unnecessary waste from landÀlls. When you shop or donate to a Salvation Army Thrift Store, you are not only helping generate funds to help someone in need, you are contributing to sustainable living. More children and families than ever before are turning to the Salvation Army food programs and centers for assistance. It has become a main concern for the Salvation Army to offer services to Àt the unique needs of families. To provide assistance and support in any way that it can. We have made children a priority and are always looking for ways to stock and give more of the food items that children need to grow strong and healthy. With 86 cents of every dollar going directly to charitable programs, the Salvation Army provides dignity and hope to more than 1.8 million people in more than 400 communities across Canada each year. Here in Fort St. John we are blessed to have the support of our community. Our drop in is open Monday through Saturday and provides a hot delicious meal everyday at noon. All are welcome to come eat and fellowship with us. The shelter is currently undergoing some exciting changes as we renovate the old Cedar Lodge Motel with a move in date of December 2013. In the new facility we will increase our shelter capacity from 20 to 30 beds, plus provide 34 new transitional housing beds while offering a high level of support to those who have problems with addiction. We will have segregated accommodation for women and children, which will be a great beneÀt to the community. Fort St. John is growing and with that comes a shortage of rental accommodation and hotel rooms which translates into fewer shelter options for the unemployed, as a result people who come here looking for work may end up with no money and no where to stay. We always look for ways to address the safety concerns of our clients and our community believing that together we can come up with good solutions for everyone. As you can see we are very busy in this community, what you cannot see is all the hands that work diligently everyday to help us provide our services. Many of these helping hands belong to volunteers and we are grateful for each and every one of them. However, as we offer more and more services we Ànd that we just do not have enough volunteers and so if you are someone who has some extra time and would like to help us make a difference we would love to talk to you about the many available opportunities that we have here at the Salvation Army. Would you like a tour of our facility? Would you like to ask Jim or Deb a question? Please do not hesitate to give us a call; we are always available to speak to you! Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy. –Proverbs 31:8-9

10116 – 100 Ave., Fort St. John, BC 250-785-0506


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Northeast NEWS

June 20, 2013

Volunteering and its Surprising Benefits Helping Yourself While Helping Others

With busy lives, it can be hard to find time to volunteer. However, the benefits of volunteering are enormous to you, your family, and your community. The right match can help you find friends, reach out to the community, learn new skills, and even advance your career. Volunteering can also help protect your mental and physical health. Consider your goals and interests You will have a richer and more enjoyable volunteering experience if you first take some time to identify your goals and interests. Start by thinking about why you want to volunteer. Also think about what you would enjoy doing. Volunteer opportunities that match both your goals and your interests are most likely to be fun and fulfilling for you. Tips for Getting Started Volunteering First, ask yourself if there is something specific you want to do. For example, do I want… …to make it better around where I live …to meet people who are different from me …to try something new …to do something with my spare time …to see a different way of life and new places …to have a go at the type of work I might want to do as a full-time job …to do more with my interests and hobbies …to do something I’m good at The best way to volunteer is to match your personality and interests. Having answers to these questions will help you narrow down your search.

The Fort St. John Community Arts Council is dedicated to developing arts programs, conducting events and creating new cultural initiatives in the North Peace for the benefit of the residents and visitors in the area. The Arts Council is a nonprofit, charitable organization with 28 arts groups representing thousands of people directly participating in the arts. Arts groups include dance, music, fabric arts, pottery, children’s arts classes and exhibitions, theatre, film, visual arts and more. Annual support comes, in part, from the City of Fort St. John and the Government of British Columbia. The Arts Council conducts fundraising events and welcomes donations to meet the annual budget. All contributions receive a tax-deductible receipt. Contact the Fort St. John Arts Council at the Artspost (10230 94 Ave) 250-787-2781.

Why Support the Arts...... What would a day without the influence of arts and culture look like? Imagine surroundings devoid of colour, homes without comfort and style, basic food without flavour and visual appeal, and the daily grind of work without leisure activities to look forward to. A world without arts and culture is expressionless, colourless, and plain dull. Although we sometimes would like to have fewer choices when we get up in the morning, imagine a wardrobe of one kind of uniform, no fragrant soaps or soft towels, the same breakfast every day, a utilitarian vehicle to get you to work and nothing to read, music to listen to, or hobby to pursue at the end of the day. The arts play a much larger role in our lives than we ever stop to realize. Everything we buy, use, and enjoy has had some arts influence in design, manufacturing, and marketing. For every actor on the screen in the movie you enjoyed last weekend, there were 20 people behind the scenes making the action happen. Although few of us stay long enough to watch the movie credits, hundreds of talented people who created the movie are listed in an amazing number of different capacities. The designers, artists, musicians, and marketers are people who came from communities like ours. Often exposed to an art form while they were growing up, they continued to make a career of their interests in the arts. As a result, we have the benefit of the movies, television shows, music and entertainment that we enjoy on a daily basis. Providing a variety of creative opportunities for the children growing up in our community gives them an advantage in coping with the future. In this mobile society, most young people leave the community where they grow up. They are better equipped to face the challenges in their lives if they have a wide variety of experiences in their formative years. The arts play an important role in shaping the values, attitudes, and ability of young people. Learning music at an early age has a direct bearing on better school marks. Experience of being on stage gives confidence for presentations in personal careers. Creating and designing teaches “thinking outside the box”. Creative thinking, confidence and risk taking are human qualities that are vital to solving some of the complex world problems we are facing now and into the future. Through the arts comes understanding and tolerance for one another. The arts bring together people of different backgrounds, careers, and races. The arts have a universal language bringing together musicians, artists, actors and more. Arts have healing elements and are used for preventive measures in medicine, senior care, and child development. Community support is the life-blood of the arts. Bringing the painters, dancers, musicians together with those who want to explore, create and learn more about painting, dancing and music requires organization, venues, art supplies and more. Our community is proud to showcase the arts and seeks out arts performances for events and conferences. The vibrant arts community enhances the appearance of Fort St. John and assists in attracting and retaining new people to the area. Supporting the arts has many benefits in this and in any community. Sue Popesku June 12, 2013

Proudly Sponsored by the North Peace Savings and Credit Union

Charities of Northern BC  

A Bi-Annual Report 2013 | What do we do with your gifts?