Renfrew-Collingwood Community News March 2016

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March 2016


East Vancouver swordplay school named Top 5 Emerging Entrepreneur in small business awards by Courtenay Rice Late January 2016, Small Business BC announced the top 5 finalists for all categories of their 13th annual awards. Valkyrie Western Martial Arts Assembly, a school of boxing, wrestling and swordplay in East Vancouver’s Collingwood neighbourhood, was chosen in the Best Emerging Entrepreneur category. This award recognizes a new business that “contributes to the social, cultural and economic well-being of their communities [and] has demonstrated community leadership and entrepreneurial initiative.” As co-owner Kaja Sadowski puts it, “Martial arts and fitness training offers an important path to personal transformation, self-esteem, selfreliance and lifelong health. Unfortunately, this path is closed to many women, older or unfit people, and members of the LGBT community due to hostile environments and poor training models that cater predominantly to fit, straight, men.”

A student works on her fencing stance in class. Photos courtesy of Valkyrie Martial Arts

In the macho, competitive world of mixed martial arts training and high-end fitness, Valkyrie WMAA’s colourful, welcoming space, strict anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies, and wealth of strong female role models stand out. With over 50 years of combined martial arts experience, the school’s teaching team offers top-tier technical training and fitness support for a diverse student body that includes everyone from competitive athletes to selfdescribed couch potatoes. They’ve also gained the attention and respect of the international martial arts community. Maija Soderholm is an instructor of Yizong Continued on page 3

Skytrain 30 years ago Page 3

Tips to conquer clutter Page 5

Baroque concert at Il Museo Page 7

Authors visit Nootka school Page 9


March 2016


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Get started during March, Nutrition Month by Roberta Wozniak and Kathy Romses March is Nutrition Month! Dietitians of Canada are helping you to make small, positive changes to your meals and snacks throughout March. You may already be making changes to your eating habits to improve your health. However, too many changes at once can be hard to keep up in the long run. It is better to focus on making small changes that you can keep doing. We eat almost 100 meals each month, so Canadians are invited to Take a 100 Meal Journey during March and make small changes, one meal at time.

“Slow down and enjoy your food one bite at a time.” During Nutrition Month, each week will have a different theme. You can find tips and ideas to help you on your journey to improved health. You can choose one or several changes that work for you. Get ready Choose the change that you want to make to your eating habit and make a plan to stick to it. Next, get your kitchen ready for action and have healthy foods on hand. Small changes can make a big difference. Some changes you can make are filling more of your plate with vegetables, having fruit as a snack or choosing whole grain bread. Quality counts Start your day with a healthy breakfast. This is important because eating a good breakfast gives your body the energy it needs to start your day. Plan ahead and make extra food at dinner. That way, you can pack healthy leftovers for lunch or have a meal ready for another day. It is possible to eat healthy without giving up on taste. Try seasoning your food with herbs or spices to add flavour. Eat mindfully Be mindful of what you eat and turn off screens (TV, computer or phone) during meals. Slow down and enjoy your food one bite at a time. Try something new Try new foods and flavours. The whole family can help out too. Find new healthy, tasty recipes at www.

Make it stick Have a plan and prepare healthy snacks and meals ahead of time. Making changes can be challenging; dietitians can help you with practical tips to get back on your healthy-eating track. Call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 and ask to speak with a dietitian. This service is available in over 100 different languages. Try this tasty recipe for a healthy breakfast or snack . Prepare it in advance and reheat for those busy mornings.

Apple Pie Oatmeal Ingredients 2 ½ cups (625 mL) skim milk 1 cup (250 mL) water 1 1/3 cups (325 mL) large flake oats 1/3 cup (75 mL) wheat germ 2 tbsp (30 mL) packed brown sugar ½ tsp (2 mL) pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon 1 apple, cored and diced 2 tbsp (30 mL) dried cranberries (optional) Instructions 1. In a large saucepan, bring milk and water to a gentle boil over medium-high heat. Stir in oats and wheat germ. Reduce heat to medium-low heat; stir in sugar and pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon). Cook, stirring for about 12 minutes or until almost thickened. 2. Remove from heat and stir in apple and cranberries (if using). Cover and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Makes 4 servings. Source: Cookspiration, Dietitians of Canada (www. For more information about Nutrition Month and to join in and take the pledge, visit Dietitians are the most trusted source of food and nutrition information for Canadians. Visit for healthy eating tips, recipes, and answers to healthy eating questions. Roberta Wozniak is a University of BC dietetic student who is an intern at Evergreen Community Health Centre. Kathy Romses is a public health dietitian with Vancouver Coastal Health, Evergreen.



March 2016

SkyTrain 30 years ago by Loretta Houben The year 1986 was the year of Expo, a world fair to celebrate Vancouver’s 100th birthday. The year many things changed in the Joyce Collingwood area. For one thing, SkyTrain opened for service on December 11, 1985. Do you remember the excitement of riding for free that month? My husband and I tried it out one foggy day, travelling from Joyce Station to Metrotown Station. The huge mall wasn’t complete, and we got off at Patterson Station by mistake and decided to walk the rest of the way as the trains were so packed. We nearly got lost in the maze of old warehouse buildings which were still standing at that time.

are coming for the Joyce SkyTrain Station, too! I live in the area, and since January 2016, the old exercise gym near the community gardens on Translink property has been taken down, along with a few trees including a lovely Kanzan cherry blossom tree, in order for equipment and mobile housing to be stored while the massive upgrades are done. Loads of gravel have been put in to replace the boggy land along the old suburban pathway. An elevator for the east side will be installed, along with escalators and bike lockers.

SkyTrain’s name was coined for the BC Transit ALRT (advanced light rapid transit) system in 1986 because the first Expo line runs on an elevated guideway, giving Do you remember the fare was passengers a scenic view of the $1.15 for single zone and $2.20 for three zones for adults? And do city. Be sure to check out On Track: Early SkyTrain Project Film from you remember having to push a button to open the doors when the 1983 on Youtube, provided by the SkyTrain stopped, as not everyone Buzzer. Going to Town—1985 is another fantastic YouTube clip, got off at all stations? showing the changing skyline of our What a change in the Collingwood city. area since then! Have you Work began on the SkyTrain line in been keeping up with the new the spring of 1982. I can remember development planned for this the huge cement pillars going area in the coming years? There up in the Joyce area, and I was have been a few open houses at pleased that such a modern means Collingwood Neighbourhood of transportation was available, House. although doubtful about riding on a train without an actual person Exciting and innovative changes

East Vancouver swordplay school Chinese internal martial arts and Visayan Style Eskrima, a Filipino sword art. She has taught martial arts for over 15 years, including seminars in the United States and Europe. In her view, “What has been missing for far too long is a space where all people will feel comfortable participating regardless of gender or ability. A school offering top class training on par with the best there is, a place for women, the LGBT community, and for older folks who still wish to enjoy movement and play, alongside the more traditional demographics. Finally we have a place like this. A women-owned martial arts space committed to full inclusivity, and to becoming a vibrant part of the community of which it is part.”

The east side of the Joyce Station where upgrades are taking place place. Photo courtesy of Loretta Houben driving on board. In fact, when the trial run took place for free at Main Street station, one of my sisters refused to get on as she thought the train would fall off the track!

If you have memories of SkyTrain and the way it’s affected your life, please share them with us. We’d love to read them. Email

SkyTrain was such a new and novel idea, that a pamphlet was printed to show how to use it. Please see: http://buzzer.translink. ca/2010/03/flashback-to-1986join-the-skytrain-team/

Loretta Houben is a long-time resident of Collingwood. She coordinates the Seniors Connection page of the Renfrew-Collingwood Community News.

Continued from page 1

The winners of the Small Business BC Awards will be announced at their award gala on February 25, in front of an anticipated audience of 450 members of B.C.’s entrepreneurial community. To take the top prize, the Valkyrie WMAA team is preparing a Dragon’s Den-style pitch for a sixperson judges panel of business, development and marketing professionals.

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Says Sadowski, “I’m really excited for it, actually—it’s not every day that we get to introduce this kind of audience to the arts we love, and to really share the big dreams that drive our school.” Courtney Rice has been studying swordplay for more than 10 years. She is the vice president and co-founder of Valkyrie Martial Arts.


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March 2016

Canadian Computer Science Conference comes to BCIT

COMMUNITY NEWS The mission of this non-profit publication is to provide the residents, businesses and organizations of Renfrew/Collingwood with a medium for community communication.

by Sharan Pawa The 2016 Canadian Undergraduate Computer Science Conference is happening this June at the BC Institute of Technology. The event is being organized by Nav Bhatti, a graduate of Windermere Community Secondary.

Paul Reid: staff writer and layout coordinator Lisa Symons: sales and distribution coordinator Julie Cheng: editorial coordinator

Participating students will share knowledge of the computational sciences including mathematics, physics, human computer interaction, artificial intelligence, algorithms, data structures and software engineering. The four-day event invites discussion and collaboration between Canada’s brightest computer science students and technological experts from academia and industry.

Contributors:Akberet Beyene, Angela Clarke,

Bita, Cari Chan, Cassandra Ly, Cecilia Stewart, Courtenay Rice, Elise Barber, Holman Wang, Jack Wang, Kathy Romses, Loretta Houben, Melissa Chungfat, Roberta Wozniak, Sharan Pawa, Stephanie Lim, Susan Wong, Yoko Tomita

We want to hear from you! Yes, You! Send comments, community events, press releases by regular post, fax or e-mail. Suggestions for improving the paper are welcome. We welcome appropriate, unsolicited editorial submissions if accompanied by the author’s real name, address and telephone number. The author should retain the original as we cannot return submissions without prior agreement nor does submission guarantee publication. We reserve the right to make editorial changes.

Next submission deadline: Mar 10 The Renfrew/Collingwood Community News is an initiative of the Collingwood Neighbourhood House (CNH).

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Growing up, the support Nav received from teachers at Windermere as well as from those in the Renfrew-Collingwood community helped give him the confidence and drive to support others. Through the conference, he hopes to inspire his peers who share his passion for computer science If you are interested in speaking at the event or if you are an undergraduate student wishing to register, please visit or email for more information. The conference runs from June 22 to 25 at BCIT’s Burnaby Campus.

Sharan Pawa was born and raised in RenfrewCollingwood and has always been passionate The first Canadian Undergraduate about writing, marketing and design. Following Computer Science Conference studies in literature and culture at the was held at the University of BC University of British Columbia, she completed Okanagan in July 2015, attracting the Graphic Design for Marketing program at 70 undergraduate students from Kwantlen Polytechnic University. across Canada. This year, Nav Bhatti has brought the event to BCIT.

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The purpose of the conference is to showcase cutting-edge research in the field of computer science. Attending undergraduate students with a topic of interest are encouraged to speak at the conference, and present their ideas to their peers from across Canada.

Nav grew up in the heart of RenfrewCollingwood. He attended Grenfell Elementary and Windermere Secondary, where he was voted valedictorian for the class of 2008. Since then, he has followed his interest in computers to BCIT, where he is currently earning a bachelor’s degree while also acting as a student executive on the BCIT Student Association.

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March 2016

10 tips to conquer clutter Real Estate Corner by Cecilia Stewart When you look around at all the stuff in your home, does the thought of spring cleaning fill you with dread? Have no fear! Here are 10 easy tips to declutter and refresh your living space. 1. Boxes Ready. Have three boxes. Label them Trash, Donate and Keep. 2. Love It or Lose It. If you haven’t used it or worn it in six months to a year, you probably don’t love it. Right? 3. A Place for Everything and Everything in Its Place. Buy organizer inserts, baskets, storage bins and label them. 4. Take It Slow. Clean room by room; clean one room each week. 5. Beat the Clock. For each room set the timer for one hour. Ready, set, go! 6. The Basics. Clean windows, mirrors, refrigerator, stove and floors. 7. Pump Up the Volume. Make it fun, play your favourite tunes while cleaning. 8. Divide and Conquer. Make it a family affair or hire a cleaning service. 9. Sell It. Make some money selling your unwanted items. 10. Reward. Take time to reward yourself at the end of all your hard work!

After all your hard work clearing the clutter, make sure to reward yourself. Photos courtesy of Cecilia Stewart.


Born and raised in Vancouver, Cecilia Stewart attended Vancouver Technical high school and now works, lives and raises her family in Renfrew Heights. She is a licensed realtor, home stager and decorator.,, 604-816-1595


Free online courses for newcomers Our neighbourhood is blessed to have people from so many countries. But many of them have had their own struggles, from learning how to get around the city to finding a job. Thankfully there are an increasing number of programs for immigrants before they arrive in Canada to support their transition before they connect with immigrant services and programs in our community. One of the latest programs funded by Immigrant, Refugees and Citizenship Canada is the Settlement Online Pre-Arrival Program (SOPA), which is delivered by MOSAIC to help immigrants get a head start on job search strategies and how to communicate professionally in a Canadian context. The program offers five free online courses for eligible people who are planning to work in Canada and have not yet left their home country. Other immigrant service agencies across Canada are teaching the courses. Dina Cherevko is SOPA’s program coordinator for B.C. and is an immigrant herself. She has been living in Canada with her family for seven years. When they arrived in Canada, they had to figure out if they could continue to work in their professions and searched for immigrant services. “Before coming to Canada, we had no idea how the job search process worked,” Dina recalled. “I wish they had a similar program like SOPA at the time. I do believe that time we spent adapting and searching for a job for our family would have been much shorter.”

by Melissa Chungfat

If anyone in our community has family or friends who will be sponsored or plan on working in the province, the courses will help them have a smoother integration before they connect with services in person. To date, over 100 people have finished the course during the pilot and current program phases. Mo Mehrpak from Iran took the Job Search Strategies course and said, “By using techniques and hints I learned, I managed to find a job in Burnaby just in 35 days!”

MOSAIC’s Settlement Online Pre-Arrival team is excited to support immigrants through their job search and The job search and communication courses are run by facilitators so the communication courses before they arrive in B.C. From course participants can get regular left to right: Linda Ragoonanan, Anisha Sahota, Dina feedback on their assignments. This way, Cherevko, Melissa Chungfat and Soraya Etminan. Photo they understand how they can apply courtesy of MOSAIC important skills as soon as they land in Canada. People can take the other because many of them may not be aware of two online courses, Working in Canada and what is in their area.” Canadian Workplace Integration, at their own pace. So who can take these courses? Immigrants who have approval to come to Canada, an For some clients who don’t have family or IELTS (English proficiency) score of 5.5 or friends in B.C., the program’s intake counsellor higher, and access to high-speed internet. Anisha Sahota is the first person they have contact with before arriving in the province. If you have family or friends coming to live and She will refer clients to available services work in B.C., contact and depending on which city they will live in first. “If learn more at I know a client is planning to live in RenfrewMelissa Chungfat is an online facilitator with Collingwood, I can tell them about Collingwood MOSAIC’s Settlement Online Pre-Arrival program. Neighbourhood House’s programs, for example,



March 2016

Social Culture Club is blooming with spring ideas The Social Culture Club is a free gathering to share your skills in knitting, crochet, sewing and craft making. People gather and teach each other in a casual environment every Saturday from 10 am to12 pm at the Collingwood Neighbourhood House, 5288 Joyce Street. Participants knit sweaters, caps and baby clothing, fix pants and make shopping bags in casual setting. Everyone, from 12 years to seniors, is welcome. This club is a good way to stay connected with your neighbourhood, get involved in relaxing activities and fulfilling experiences while forming meaningful memories with others. If you have artistic, creative, social and cultural ideas and you want to be part of your neighbourhood house, please email Ytomita@cnh. or call Yoko at 604-435–0323 extension 224.

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Get Involved Let us know what “home” means in Renfrew-Collingwood – free workshops Saturdays, March 5, 12, 19 and 26 12:30–3:30 pm Collingwood Neighbourhood House, 5288 Joyce Street What does “home” mean to you? That’s the theme of the My Home community art project sponsored by Collingwood Neighbourhood House. The project brings together local and newly settled community members to create artistic street banners that will be installed along Joyce Street. Participants will share their stories of home, gain a greater understanding of each other, bridge cultures and generations, beautify the neighbourhood and learn about valuable public spaces.

March 2016


Stile Moderno baroque music concert lights up the Italian Cultural Centre Il Museo by Angela Clarke On February 12, 2016 the baroque chamber group Stile Moderno played to a packed house at Il Museo at the Italian Cultural Centre. This performance was a unique experience: Not only were Lillian Broca’s monumental six-foot Judith mosaics the backdrop for this quartet, the setting was made all the more warm and inviting by the presence of over 100 candles illuminating the room and the mosaics.

underway in Venice during this period, hence the program’s title “Affetti Musicali” (literally meaning affections music), describing the intense and passionate emotions conveyed through this highly experimental and dramatic music.

This 17th-century musical movement was Stile Moderno. Photo source: www.arthurneele. matched by artistic changes ushering in the com/stile-moderno.html. Photo by Alex Waterhouseexpressive and vibrant Hayward Lead artists Yoko Tomita and Danvic mannerist movement in Briones will design the banners with the Italy. This artistic period explored depicting this story, Broca creates a other participants. Anyone interested chiaroscuro effect of light and dark in in participating is invited to join the free the human connection to the workshops. Come help define what physical body and the capacity for her artwork, juxtaposing colourlessness home means in our neighbourhood! emotion, but also the deep human with colour intensity. The face, gestures For more information, contact Yoko at and costuming of the Judith figure relationship with the Divine. Stile Moderno, headed by the or Vive at vwong@ are the focus of the greatest degree of baroque violinist Arthur Neele, colour saturation and, like Leonardo da Important Italian artists such as chose musical selections based on Vinci, Broca incorporates the technique Artemesia Gentileschi (1593-1653), early 17th-century Venetian and Disability Arts Salon of sfumato or the subtle blending her father Orazio Gentileschir Mantuan composers. The program Sunday, March 13 at 1 pm and gradual softening through gentle Renfrew Park Community Centre (1563-1639) and their friend the corresponded thematically with 2929 East 22nd Avenue, Vancouver gradations of glass pieces. This leads famous artist Caravaggio (1571the mosaic artwork in the Il Museo The Disability Arts Salon is a free the viewer’s eye toward Judith’s facial 1610) were proponents of this gallery. Specific focus was placed on gathering whose focus is art created by expression and physical gestures, movement. The figure of Judith the artistic and musical influences in artists who live with a disability. Kickstart’s enabling the audience to connect with from the text of the Apocrypha Venice in the 16th century. The glass artistic director, Yuri Arajs, will give a Judith’s interior journey. was an important subject for the tesserae comprising Broca’s mosaics presentation on successful and wellmannerist painters, especially was acquired from the historic known artists who live with a disability. The concert drew the audience’s among Caravaggio and the Venetian glass atelier of Orsoni, Followed by a group discussion. Reservations are not needed. Just show attention to the drama and intensity Gentileschis. which first began creating glass for up and join in the discussion. The parking mosaic masters in Venice during the of the mannerist period; the lot is on Renfrew Street. The Renfrew music selections were originally Lilian Broca’s own mosaic cycle late baroque period. Park Community Centre is wheelchair commissioned for opulent and interpreting the Judith story accessible. decadent celebrations in the Italian references “affetti” and the Art and music movements mirrored baroque courts. The performance mannerist art tradition. Broca’s one another during this concert. The Free local running club mosaic series achieves this in many featured instruments, which like composers selected for this program Are you interested in joining a free, local Broca’s mosaics, were dramatic and ways: first, her work depicts a running club or learn-to-run club? The were influential musicians in Venice club would meet one to three times dramatic story and a psychological large in scale. and Manua during the early baroque per week, depending on interest, in the journey of a woman who must period between 1600 and 1650. As Collingwood neighbourhood. If you’re Of particular note was the lute take great risks to save her town Arthur Neele noted, the musical interested, contact rcinteractive@cnh. played by Konstantin Bozhinov. Most and its people. But second, in choices marked a transformation or 778-228-7434. enthusiasts of baroque music are familiar with short-stemmed lutes. Do you have a great idea to improve your neighbourhood? Apply for a The archlute, an instrument with an Neighbourhood Small Grant - Deadline April 4 elongated neck, added a depth and resonance to the chamber group’s Neighbourhood Small Grants offers grants of $50 to $500 (and a few for $1,000) for residents to develop projects sound with its extended base range. The that meet the needs of the community. In Renfrew-Collingwood, the grants are administered through the audience was treated to an excellent Collingwood Neighbourhood House. introduction to the instrument as well as performances of new compositions What kind of projects can you do? that were variations on traditional Examples of projects include block parties, digital storytelling workshops, book exchange libraries, canning songs. workshops, communal cooking, murals and community gardens. Application deadline is April 4, 2016. Find more info at Il Museo would like to thank Stile Moderno (Arthur Neele, Konstantin To see a video of projects, visit, Angela Malmburg and community-through-small-grants#.VqBX7JorL4Y Natalia Mackie) and Lilian Broca for such an important artistic experience. Greenest City grants The Greenest City Neighbourhood Small Grants program offers grants of up to $1,000 for residents of Vancouver Angela Clarke is the museum director to develop projects that contribute to the City’s Greenest City Action Plan Targets. and curator at Il Museo at the Italian Find more info at Cultural Centre. Questions? For more information contact Sheri Parke Mosaics, being an ancient art form, were intended to be viewed by candlelight. At this performance, the flickering candlelight enhanced the shimmer of the thousands of Venetian glass pieces that form the raw material for Lilian Broca’s mosaic cycle of Judith from the Apocrypha.


March 2016

For the love of food

Getting to know some new food security faces

With the growing season upon us, the local food security team based out of Collingwood Neighbourhood House would like to invite you to join them in the garden soon! Since Cassandra and Elise are pretty new to the team, here is a bit about themselves they’d like to share with you. They took turns asking each other questions and hope you can share your answers with them next time they see you.

enjoy whipping up matcha white chocolate chip cookies to share. I found a recipe online and fell in love with them after my first attempt and now, it’s the one thing I make late at night when I’m feeling stressed. When I now ask my dad to help pick up a small tin of matcha powder from the store, he knows exactly what I plan to make. Baking is so therapeutic!

Cassandra: What is a favourite food memory of yours, Elise?

Elise: I agree! And your matcha cookies are delicious. Maybe you could bring them in to a rooftop garden session sometime.

Elise: My parents both enjoy food and cooking. My mom and I made a lot of cakes growing up (my favourite was rainbow chip) and I was always ready to “help clean” by licking the bowl and beaters at the end! My dad would make a picture out of our meals at dinner—a sheep out of rice, green beans for a fence—and my brother and I had to guess what the picture was, which was fun. I think it was a strategy to encourage us to eat our veggies! And when you find yourself in the kitchen, what do you enjoy preparing, Cassandra? Cassandra: I’m more of a baker than a cook and I am definitely no professional, but I always


Cassandra: Sure! They would make a good gardening snack. I’m looking forward to growing some fresh herbs in our rooftop garden space. So what’s your favourite herb and how do you like to use it?

a key inspiration for your work? Cassandra: This past year and a half, I had the privilege of volunteering with Anita Lau, a Chinese seniors outreach worker at the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre. We accompanied seniors to medical appointments, provided interpretation services, socialized with those who attended the Women’s Centre’s daily lunches and organized weekly community kitchens. Working with Anita, I learned more about the key barriers that prevent seniors from accessing services, one of which is the pervasiveness of racism that occurs in food lines. Chinese seniors are discriminated for their supposed “greediness” in taking free food; it is presumed that they can already “afford” to purchase their own.

Speaking with seniors firsthand on their experiences, I was reminded Elise: I love the smell of sage of the importance of seeing food in the garden. I’ve got an easy issues as multifaceted and that and delicious brown-butter sage one’s identity, such as race and roasted sweet-potato dish that I gender, greatly influences how we make with it. access food. I am inspired by my senior friends who continue to push You’ve done a lot of great food past adversity and I am motivated security work before this, Cassandra. When you think about to organize alongside community members and my colleagues your past experience in food security organizing, what has been to address major food security challenges within all communities.

Hasco, former owner of Roman Ristorante on Kingsway, invites all his old friends to visit him in Kitsilano

by Elise Barber

Elise: That’s one of the reasons I love working in this area—food is a powerful point of intersection between many social justice issues. What an important story—thanks for sharing it.

Cassandra and Elise welcome you to join them in local gardens and community kitchens. Photo by Stephanie Lim Cassandra and Elise would love to hear from you. Please stop by their office at Collingwood Neighbourhood House (5288 Joyce Street) and introduce yourself. Or join them at one of their upcoming activities in March, including gardening and orchard sessions, and community kitchens. Stay tuned to their Facebook page (Renfrew Collingwood Food Security Institute) and blog ( for more info. See you in the garden soon! Elise Barber is the coordinator of the Renfrew-Collingwood Food Security Institute.

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Vancouver Aboriginal Child and Family Services Society is seeking loving and dedicated foster parents who are willing to share their homes and provide foster care for Aboriginal babies, children, and youth in the Greater Vancouver area. We invite Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal applicants. Information Sessions are held on the 1st Tuesday of every month at 6:45pm in our office at 3284 East Broadway, Vancouver. For more information, please email or call 604-216-7447.


Blast from the past with a cozy twist

new generation at Nootka school After the winter break, Nootka Elementary began their year with a special visit from guest author Holman Wang. Holman and his twin brother, Jack, are the creators of a popular board book series, Cozy Classics, which reinvent classic novels into beautiful 12-word stories for young children. These delightful tidbits of English literature deliver a sense of nostalgia and excitement for parents alongside the bountiful learning benefits that books bring to our babies at school. Jack and Holman are local. They grew up in southeast Vancouver and attended MacCorkindale Elementary, which belongs to the Killarney family of schools. Jack, now a professor of creative writing in New York, was just not inspired by the traditional word books filled with barn animals and primary shapes and colours he was reading to his young daughters. So he came up with this idea of bringing the classics to the kids in an easy and appealing way for both children and adults. Holman, who earned his law degree at the University of BC, has since hung up his courtroom robes and is the co-author and self-taught creator behind the illustrations of the exquisite fuzzy felt figures that make these books charming and downright adorable. The depth of artistry is remarkable and the felt figures are so heartachingly cute, you just want to reach out and hug ’em. Not only are the books visually enticing, but can potentially elicit insightful questions as your child grows. Besides the simple sight words, this is an opportunity for you to engage with your child, tell the story the way you see fit, and lead into those reflective conversations that could sprout into a genuine interest for reading and learning.


March 2016

Local children’s authors inspire a

by Susan Wong

What also resonated with my boys was the creative process behind the felt figures which began with a childhood story. Holman recalls as a young boy he enjoyed being a “maker of things,” and presents a photo of a child-size space shuttle made of basic materials that he and Jack built without the assistance of their parents. So it appears to me, The Force has always been with the brothers, but has now Awakened (sorry, couldn’t help myself!). So what’s the big deal? The deal is that these are just regular guys who grew up and live in our local neighbourhoods, who have young families and work 9-5 jobs, who made what seemed like nothing at all into something that led them to an unlikely life journey. The brothers’ story captures the renaissance of what was once close to our hearts, but far forgotten from our minds. I am in awe over the beauty and sophistication of weaving the past, present and future into one 12-word book. It’s an igniting and refreshing expression of parenthood, literature, innovation, work, passion and family. It started with something as routine as a dad reading to his child and arose a collaboration and embodiment of two brothers that took the best of themselves with a rekindled childhood passion, was born something bigger than just the books. Well now, that’s a big deal. Susan Wong lives in the Joyce-Collingwood area and contributes occasionally to the RenfrewCollingwood Community News.

Il Museo Ad for Preview Magazine-3

Right: Children’s author Holman Wang visits

Nootka school. Photo courtesy of Monika Sanft

As a parent, I am over-the-rainbow with this simple but wistful epiphany as I am a huge fan of the old books. During an interview on The Rush, Fiona Forbes discusses how well received the books have been, especially by parents. Holman states, “It’s a testament to the fact that parents want a little more for their kids beyond pink princesses and fluffy bunnies”—and I couldn’t agree more.


Heroine of a Thousand Pieces:

The Vancouver brothers have recently launched a series of Star Wars “Epic Yarns” books which I imagine would be super popular amongst young fans due to the recent blockbuster movie release. Again, it’s the perfect opportunity for adult fans who want to share their childhood memories with their kids over this blast from the past with a twist.

The Judith Mosaics of Lilian Broca November 12, 2015 – March 31, 2016 Il Museo at The Italian Cultural Centre 3075 Slocan Street, Vancouver BC V5M 3E4

These impressive masterpieces of felt art have been displayed in museums all over the United States. Holman was also the artist behind the new community banners in Burnaby Heights where you will see the iconic “Helen” inspired by the girl-ona-swing neon sign which has been a community landmark for over half a century. After Holman’s visit at the school, both my sons have asked for the new Star Wars books. And to my surprise, the eldest even asked for a copy of War and Peace! Well, it’s a start and I hope in time, my bargain copies of the must-read classics I found in the knick-knack bargain bins at the ol’ Target are not wasted.

The twin brothers as young boys playing Star Wars. Photo courtesy of Jack and Holman Wang Judith Seducing Holofernes, detail. Diptych, 73 x 96" (185.5 x 244cm)


March 2016

A chat with Dolores The cycle of life is an amazing series of events that everyone has to go through. We have unique words to describe the stages of human development, such as childhood, adolescence, middle age and old age. As young children or teenagers we can’t imagine that one day we will be as old as our grandparents, and that prospect seems far away for us then. Unfortunately, life is very short and in no time we have to face our old age and deal with the needs and requirements of being elderly. Old age for many people is a time of freedom—there seems plenty of time to do whatever one prefers. It’s a time of retirement once the stress of a holding down a job is no longer there. At least we think that way. But while there might be some truth to that, life is always full of surprises. Until we part from this world we have to expect all sorts of things to deal with. Each phase of our life has its own challenges. One of the biggest challenges at the golden age is the loss of one’s independence.

by Akberet Beyene

I experience this reality very often during my volunteer work with the Collingwood Neighbourhood House, where I participate in the Better at Home program. Through this program I have had the opportunity to learn much about the changes affecting the elderly. One of the most enjoyable experiences I have through this work is hearing the wonderful stories of the many graceful women I visit. I really believe that old age brings true wisdom, knowledge that we can’t learn from textbooks and that is only obtainable through the experience of life. Meet Dolores One of the seniors I visit on a weekly basis is the beautiful, slim and elegant woman Dolores. I first met her four years ago and since that time she has never raised her voice and is always humble and polite. Over the years we have gotten to know each other, and I look forward to our weekly chats and discussions, which are always sprinkled with lots of laughs. Dolores grew up in a small French town in Québec with her three


Collingwood Neighbourhood House March 2016


We are located on 5288 Joyce St. in Vancouver. Please call us at 604-435-0323 if you have any questions or want to find out more about our many seniors recreation and social programs.

MONDAY FUN‐ DAY GROUP 星期一健康组织 Join the Monday group at Collingwood Neighbourhood House for fun activities, informative talks, a focus on health and wellbeing and more! Open to everyone, new comers welcomed! Monday March 7th , 1:15‐3pm: Birthday Cake + Bingo ‐ Start off the New Year with FREE cake for everyone and a celebration for the January birthdays then stay for Bingo! Tell us if your Birthday is in March. Coffee and cake will be served. There is no cost for this program, but please bring a small prize or $2.00 for bingo. Everyone gets a chance to win! Monday March 14th: 1.15‐ 3pm:’Celebrate St Patrick’s Day at Collingwood Neighbourhood House!’ Join us for an Irish get together with music, dancing and light snacks. Don’t forget to wear green! $2.50 tea and coffee provided. *CNH will also be having an Irish musical performance during community lunch on March 17th Monday March 21st:1.15 – 3pm: BC Hydro/ Fortis BC Energy Conservation Assistance. Join Cathy McDonald from Fortis BC to find out how you could be saving money on your energy bills and home upgrades that you may be entitled to. Be kind to the earth…and your wallet! Cost is $2.50. Tea/ Coffee and light snack provided Monday March 28th: CLOSED EASTER MONDAY

Renfrew Collingwood Better at Home Program: The Better at Home Senior’s Shuttle operates on Tuesday, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9.30am‐ 4pm. The shuttle can provide transportation to medical appointments, grocery shopping, social activities and more! Fees are charged on a sliding scale according to income and volunteer support can be arranged if requested. Call 604 435 0375 to register today! The Better at Home Walking Club leaves CNH each Monday and Wednesday at 10.30am. You can register and walk on the same day. New members are always welcome! Pick up a copy of the monthly seniors bulletin at reception to find out the schedule or call 604 435 0375 for more information.

sisters and two brothers. As a child she spoke French and could not speak English at all. When she was 10 years old her family suddenly moved to Vancouver and were forced to learn English very quickly. Feeling like outsiders, the children took care of each other, speaking French amongst themselves. I am always amused when Dolores describes the love her parents had for each other. Even though they were six children in need of a lot attention and care, her mother was always the apple in her dad’s eye, making her feel like she was the best in the world. Dolores says that her mom was very lucky to marry someone like her father, as she had learned over the years that men like her father were very rare. “I never seen a man so dedicated to his woman and loved her so much”, she says. “He just adored the ground she walked on.” Dolores continues that her mom was not really a pretty woman, that she had a big nose and was a little heavy, but that she had beautiful eyes, a lovely complexion, and a smile that could break your heart. Her father just adored her and there was nothing she could do that would upset him. Growing up, Dolores thought that all men would be like her father. When she got married she thought she would get the same kind treatment, but it wasn’t quite the same. Unfortunately, her marriage did not end happily, but she acknowledges that she had a beautiful life with her two kids. Dolores can never say enough about her beloved parents. Her family is her favourite topic. It amuses me when she tells me the story of her father, who was one of 19 children in his family, and how nowadays having two or three kids is considered a big deal. Her father was the last born of the 19 children, and he never knew his mother, who sadly passed away at his birth. Dolores’ own mother had seven brothers and a sister. She explains that families were so large back then because of the socioeconomic

structure of the country was based on farming and required a large workforce. In large families there were more hands to help with the heavy workload. Even though Dolores’ mother was sick all the time her father was always dedicated to her. She was a humble and hospitable woman. Dolores often recalls the days when their house felt like a restaurant and often a hotel, with people coming in and out. Everybody loved her mom and enjoyed being around her. There was not a day that somebody did not come and see her mom. Dolores’s mom was a very good cook, too. She often baked many different pies, and the coffee was always on—in case somebody dropped in, and then they could have coffee and a piece of pie with ice cream. Not only that, she made sure that whoever did come never left empty-handed, handing out pies or whatever else she had. She was a loving and generous person. Dolores always stresses that her dad never complained, although there were the six kids to look after, and that he was always “having a ball” with her friends. Recalling the memories of her parents, a smile never leaves Dolores’ face. She likes to continue with her story as long as she can. Sometime, when I listen to her telling the story of her parents’ love, it sounds like a fairy tale. In Dolores’ eyes, her mother was a wonderful woman and mother, and her father cherished his wife all his life. Her parents had a long and happy life together. He died first and then she carried on for a while without him. They died two years apart. Even though it happened long ago, Dolores still feels sad


The Seniors Connection A chat with Dolores continued from page 10

when she talks about the end of her parents’ life.

Small gestures and simple words mean a lot to seniors and volunteers by Bita

She enjoyed being in Denmark and describes that the people there were so nice, friendly and obliging. While there she never felt homesick, but she admitted that she did miss Canada and the freedom of being a Canadian. They decided to return to Canada because her husband had a job offer waiting for him. They lived in a beautiful house in Vancouver with lots of friends. Unfortunately, something happened, serious enough to end her marriage. It was kind of a sad because they did have a good marriage and two wonderful children. The beautiful Dolores is now in her mid 80s and is a very proud and gorgeous woman. She says that even though she misses her independence, she is happy to have had a long and exciting life.

The following is a paid advertisement by Adrian Dix, MLA for Vancouver/Kingsway Dear Neighbors: Our office ushered in the Lunar New Year of the monkey with zest, thanks to the energetic lion dance organized by the Collingwood BIA and the many guests who attended our gathering on February 20th. Thanks to everyone for celebrating with us! Remembering Jagat Ram

Dolores had many interesting experiences in her life. After high school she went to college for two years where she learned a lot, enough to get quite a few jobs in different places, like being a clerk at the bank. In order to pay for her studies she had to work. She was a dance teacher, too, a job she seemed to have enjoyed the most, and which also had historical significance for her. It was there that she met her husband and subsequently had two children, a boy and girl. He was a Danish boy, from Denmark. When they decided to get married she wanted to know his parents and where he came from. They went to Denmark and spent six years there. This gave her a chance to get to know her husband’s family. She learned the language, which she admitted wasn’t easy, but she learned enough to speak. Her kids also mastered the language.


March 2016

Jagat Ram passed away January 25, 2016 and I wanted to take a moment to remember his life. Jagat had so many friends in Joyce Collingwood: on the veterans committee (he was often a Parade Marshall!), at Collingwood Neighbourhood House, the Bamboo, La Panderia and many others. I had a meeting with him three days prior to his passing to nominate him for a provincial award recognizing his service. He was a dear friend to me, to Don Davies and many more. We hold his kind soul in our thoughts, and to his family, we send our deepest condolences. 10th Annual Seniors’ Health & Wellness Fair – April 6

Bita and Pat holding hands. Photo courtesy of Three Links Care Centre This article was written by a volunteer at Three Links Care Centre who has developed a rather extraordinary friendship with a senior named Pat. The two of them sat down to talk about what their relationship means to them. Pat and I have developed a beautiful friendship since I began volunteering with Three Links. It is always amazing how even two people who have many years of difference between them can still have so much common ground that gets expressed through conversation and storytelling.

One of my favourite things about seeing Pat each week is that we can have such spontaneous conversation and that, before all that, she always asks how my week has been and checks in on me, a kind and caring gesture that warms my heart. When I asked Pat what her favourite part of our weekly visits are she said “that you instinctively know what I need.” That definitely brought a tear to my eye.

We have had many wonderful little adventures together—including going to Stanley Park and having lunch and ice cream (and our taxi getting lost on the way which brought many giggles!). We have As Pat said, “you meet some gone shopping for birthday and people and you relate really well, and some you don’t. It’s to do with Christmas cards, and each enjoyed a giant chocolate chip cookie and a lot of little things that usually hot chocolate afterwards. you don’t define. If you try to define it too much, you miss the As we sit here reflecting on these thing and make it too concrete.” things, we realize how difficult it can be to express the experiences And this is exactly what it is—a combination of many little things in full because there are a lot of little subtle things that make that have created a connection them memorable. I think we between the two of us that is see that things don’t have to be special and unique. Pat said, extravagant, and that the smallest “some people you naturally feel comfortable with them right away, gestures and simplest words can often have the biggest impact. I mean it’s very rare, but when it happens it’s amazing really.”

The annual Seniors’ Health and Wellness Fair enters its tenth year in 2016, and I am pleased to invite all seniors and their families to participate on April 6th at Renfrew Park Community Centre. Doors will open at 10 am. The day is always informative and fun. All participants receive a free and healthy lunch! Did you know? Free copies of the BC Seniors’ Guide is available in English, Punjabi, and Chinese at our community office. Joyce-Collingwood Station Precinct Review Open House On February 3rd and 6th, the City of Vancouver hosted an Open House to review the area around the JoyceCollingwood Station. The goal was to seek feedback from the community on issues such as land use, density, building forms, housing, and public spaces. My Constituency Assistants, Eveline and Lucinda, and I attended the event and met many people who live and work in the area. There was a lot of discussion and we are pleased to be part of such an engaged and active community. More information can be found here at the City of Vancouver website: Resources for Landlords and Tenants Our office has resources for both landlords and tenants on your rights and responsibilities, available in both English and Chinese. Securing rental housing can be a challenge, especially for those who have never rented in BC, or who lack recent references. The Tenant Resource and Advisory Centre (TRAC) and the Justice Education Society have recently launched Renting It Right!, a free, new online course for tenants. Designed for first-time renters, this videobased course will covers both practical and legal topics to consider before deciding to rent. To register for this free course, visit


March 2016

Read On!


A news section for Renfrew-Collingwood learners

Money, Money, Money  Anyone living in Vancouver will tell you that it is one of the most expensive places to live in the world. I have noticed two things Vancouverites (people living in Vancouver) talk about the most: the weather and the high cost of housing. Housing is what we spend most of our money on. If you have young children and need to pay for child care, that is another big expense. An expense is anything that you spend money on, usually every month. Other expenses include food, utilities (lights, heat, water), insurance, clothes, bus fare/gas for your car and phone. There are many expenses each month. I do not save as much as I should. I am trying to learn more about being better with money. I have read some good books and talked to some helpful people. I cannot make Vancouver a less expensive city, but I can do some things to spend less. Here are some of the things I am trying:

Read On!

has a web page. You can:

 Read the articles

 Print worksheets http://renfrewcollingwood read-on/

Reading levels on this page Level 1

 

Level 2


Level 3

1. No more credit cards. Thirty years ago it was very difficult to get a credit card. Today almost anyone can. Credit cards make it easy to “buy now, pay later.” Unless you are very good about paying off your bill every month, you will end up spending more by using credit cards. 2. Cook more, eat out less. I really like to go out to eat. There are so many good restaurants to try in Vancouver! Staying home and cooking saves money, so I am trying to eat out less. 3. Shop small. There are a lot of small grocery stores in the neighbourhood that have really good prices on fruits and vegetables. It is more work to shop at a few different stores to find everything you need, but you can save a lot of money. There are many of these small stores along Joyce, Kingsway and Victoria Drive. 4. Use cash. Many people already do this, but I didn’t. I am trying to spend with cash now instead of using my debit card. When I am using real coins and bills, I am more careful with how much I spend. It is too easy to use a debit card and not think about what I am buying. 5. Exercise with YouTube. It is good to take exercise classes at the gym or community centre. It gets you outside and you meet new people. I love to do exercise classes, but when I need to save money I go for a walk or exercise at home. I found that YouTube has thousands of free exercise videos. There is something for everyone. Just search for “workout video” or “yoga” or “leg exercises.” You will find many to choose from and they Money are free! These are just a few ideas about saving money. I hope that these ideas will help you, too. You might know of other money-saving ideas. What do you do to save money and spend less?

Money Quotations


“A wise person should have money in their head, but not in their heart.” ~Jonathan Swift “Never spend your money before you have it.” ~Thomas Jefferson “It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.” ~Seneca “I’d like to live as a poor man with lots of money.” ~ Pablo Picasso “You can be young without money, but you can’t be old without it.” ~ Tennessee Williams “There are people who have money, and there are people who are rich.”



















CLASSROOM – 300 ft2



March 2016
















RENFREW PARK COMMUNITY COMPLEX 2929 East 22nd Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5M 2Y3 604 257-8388 Fax: 604 257-8392 Website:

Jointly operated by Renfrew Park Community Association and Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation.

Winter Registration is ongoing, register early so you don’t miss out. For our full listing of programs check out our website or drop by and pick up a brochure. GST excluded. Registration has now started. Register early so you don’t miss out.

Special Hours of Operation Sat

Mar 19


Fitness Ctr

Centre Area





Mar 20





Mar 25





Mar 26





Mar 27




Mon Mar 28




Special Event Highlights

Ice Skating at Killarney (10-13yrs) Fri

Mar 4

Mystery Tour (55+yrs) Mon

Mar 7

4:30-8:00pm 9:15am-5:00pm

Easter Eggstravaganza (2-10yrs)


Wibit Inflatable Day in the pool

Saturday, Mar 26 from 2:00pm–4:00pm

Come and join in the fun! *Regular admission rates apply

St Patrick’s Day Luncheon (55+yrs) Wed

Mar 30

Health Fair (All Ages) Wed

Apr 6

12:00-2:30pm 10:00am-2:00pm

$8/57/person Free

Spring Break Events

First Aid Courses (14+yrs)

Standard First Aid & Recert, Emergency First Aid & Recert, CPR C-Basic Rescuer & Recert. Sat/Sun Mar 12 & 13, Mar 19 & 20 Call for more details.


Rain or shine our event runs from 12:30-3pm. Come before and or after your egg hunt time. There will be face painting, crafts, games and our famous egg hunt. Come and enjoy the entire event. Children less than 8yrs must be accompanied by an adult. There will be a concession that will be run by our Youth Council. Tickets are limited, so buy them early. There will be 4 egg hunts and you must register for your specific time. Sat Mar 26 12:30-3:00pm $5/person

Red Cross Babysitting Training (11+yrs) First Aid Hero So you want to be a babysitter or, your parents want you to take this course so they feel confident leaving you at home alone? Babysitting with First Aid Hero emphasizes learning through real life scenarios. Covered in this course: -Exploring the Business of Babysitting -Creating Safe Environments -Safely Caring for ages 0-12 -First Aid Skills Please bring a bag lunch (no nuts please) plenty of water and snacks. Sun Mar 13 10:30am-5:30pm $60/person

Shuttle I/II—Badminton Camp (6-18yrs)

Please note GST added for 15-18yrs. Mon-Fri Mar 14-18 9:00-10:30am Mon-Thu Mar 21-24 9:00-10:30am

Shuttle III/IV—Badminton Camp (6-18yrs) Please note GST added for 15-18yrs. Mon-Fri Mar 14-18 10:30am-12:00pm Mon-Thu Mar 21-24 10:30am-12:00pm

Richard Le $70/5 sess $56/4 sess Richard Le $70/5 sess $56/4 sess

2016 Spring Centre Programs

For our full listing of programs check out our website or drop by and pick up a brochure. GST to be added. Registration Starts On-line and in person Registration Tue, March 8 Register by phone (604 257-8388) Wed, March 9 To create a new account, go to


March 2016


Collingwood Neighbourhood House (CNH)


No matter what your age, CNH’s recreation programs make getting fit fun! Women & Men’s Drop-in Soccer Tuesdays & Thursdays, 8:30 –10:15 p.m. $4.50/session or $48.50/12 sessions

Men & Women’s Drop-in Volleyball Mondays & Wednesdays, 8:30 –10:15 p.m. $4.50/session or $48.50/12 sessions

The Drop-in Soccer and Volleyball programs make getting a great work-out a lot of fun. Health benefits include increased aerobic capacity, better cardiovascular health, lowered body fat, improved muscle tone, and increased strength, flexibility and endurance. People from different cultures and backgrounds come together to enjoy a common interest, meet new people and build connections. The environment is stress-free and focused on having fun, regardless of skill level, age, or gender. Open to anyone 18 or older. Seniors Drop-in Badminton Saturdays, 2:30 – 4:15 pm $3.50/session Seniors Badminton offers many health benefits – it provides excellent cardiovascular exercise, improves flexibility, and aids hand and eye coordination (group leader Ken said that his high blood pressure has improved since he started playing). The group is friendly and members sometimes organize social events, such as karaoke dinners. Although most participants are intermediate level players, players of all levels are welcome. Participants bring their own racket, but shuttlecocks are provided by CNH. Participants play doubles games only. Seniors Gentle Chair Yoga Wednesdays, 1:45 –2:45 pm $3/session Gentle Chair Yoga focuses on safe, slowmoving exercises suitable for people who are dealing with physical challenges. The class helps participants to relax, reduce anxiety, build muscle, and increase strength and flexibility. Instructor Marie Chang leads participants through exercises such as spinal flexes, arm circles, and leg stretches. The class is relaxed, with no pressure. Marie varies the practice and adapts the moves for people with different ability levels, so there’s usually something for everyone. As Marie says, “If you can breathe, you can do yoga.” Participant Diane Dufour said, “The best thing about Gentle Chair Yoga is that it grounds you. It makes you feel very relaxed. You feel like you can take on more. I used to have a lot of back and neck pain. Now the pain is gone. I’m sure yoga’s helped.” Children’s Gymnastics Spring Break Camp During Spring Break, you might want to consider sending your child to Gymnastics Spring Break Camp. Children of all skill levels can have fun learning the basics of gymnastics in a safe and supportive atmosphere. Pre-registration is required; no experience is necessary. Ages: 6 -12. Leader: Lucinda Donaldson.

For more information on CNH’s recreation programs, visit or call 604-435-0323. This page is sponsored by the Collingwood Neighbourhood House

COMMUNITY LUNCH Collingwood Neighbourhood House invites you to lunch every Tuesday and Thursday. Full meal prices are $6.25 for adults, $5 for seniors, $4 for students and $3.25 for children under 12. Items can be purchased a la carte or “to go.”

March lunch menu Tuesday, March 1 Tomato Soup Tuna Sandwich or Grilled Cheese Salad; Vanilla Pudding Thursday, March 3 Chicken Cacciatore or Veggies on Rice Salad; Biscuits Tuesday, March 8 Spinach Lemon Soup Ham or Veggie Quiche Salad; Chocolate Pudding Thursday, March 10 Beef or Veggie Stew on Quinoa Salad; Shortbread Cookies Tuesday, March 15 Minestrone Soup Pulled Turkey or Veggie Sandwich Salad; Orange Almond Cake (Glutenfree) Thursday, March 17 Salmon or Veggie Burgers with Fries Salad; Chocolate Cake Tuesday, March 22 Black Bean Soup Chicken or Veggie Panini Salad; Coconut Macaroon Thursday, March 24 Cabbage Roll or Veggie Roll Salad; Sweet Potato Cake Tuesday, March 29 Minty Pea Soup Beef or Veggie Tacos Salad; Mango Pudding Thursday, March 31 Spaghetti and Meatballs or Pasta Primavera Garlic Bread Salad; Oatmeal Cookies



March 2016

Rajesh Joshi is the General Manager of our local CIBC Banking Centre at the northwest corner of Kingsway and Joyce. Rajesh is proud of CIBC for commitment to helping people. “CIBC is client focused,” says Rajesh, which is why he got into finance – to help people. This past January will mark Rajesh’s ninth year with CIBC. Starting as a financial service representative, he worked his way up through the three levels before becoming Branch manager in 2011. In order to help us with their wide variety of financial services, the CIBC Banking Centre at Kingsway and Joyce offers a knowledgeable staff, some with over 25 years of experience. With a team of Financial Advisor and Financial Services Representatives, Rajesh says that your CIBC banking centre is ready to help in over ten languages including English, Italian, Cantonese, Mandarin, Tagalog, Korean, Hindi, Punjabi, and Indonesian. “It’s so important,” says Rajesh, “to be able to get rid of language barriers when doing business, whether its service from a teller, or when dealing with our Certified Financial Planners.” Rajesh is proud of his staff and sees his team at CIBC as an extended family. Rajesh is proud of CIBC for its continuous innovation. For instance, CIBC was the first of the Big 5 banks to offer the technology to deposit a cheque by taking a picture of it. “CIBC is on the cutting edge. We need to keep pace because everything changes so fast:

mobile banking, mobile apps; people can now buy stocks with their phones.” Rajesh is also proud of CIBC’s community involvement. In 2015, the company contributed more than $65 million to support 1,850 community organizations across Canada. This includes employeeled fundraising in initiatives such as CIBC Miracle Day, United Way/ Centraide and the CIBC Run for the Cure where 15,000 CIBC employees and their families contributed over $3 million to the 2015 Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. Way to go guys! Rajesh also likes to make sure that the local kindergarten classes have a chance to explore the branch, including a look in the vault and the ATM room. Formerly a civil engineer, Rajesh arrived in Canada in 2003 from New Delhi, India with his wife and daughter. They have since added twin boys to the family. Needless to say, any of Rajesh’s free time is heavily invested in his three children. He loves to watch them play and grow. Looking back, Rajesh sees how hard it was raising the family when they had no other family members here in Vancouver to help them. Rajesh loves Vancouver. “We are so close to everything here: the mountains, the ocean, beaches, lakes – everything is just 30 minutes away. Don’t take these things for granted – this is a kind of heaven.”


The Year of the Monkey - February 20th

Thank you to the Hon Hsing Athletic Club for bringing their two colourful Lions to tour the Collingwood businesses along Kingsway and Joyce Street to bless them for a prosperous new year. l

Be a Part of Collingwood Days 2016

Events will be occuring in the Collingwood area between May 21 to May 29th. Collingwood Days festival is Saturday May 28th on the Carleton Elementary school grounds. Call out to International Marketplace vendors, Food Court vendors, Farmer’s Market vendors, performers, martial arts and dance studios. Contact Angela Evans at angela@ for more information or to see how you can participate. Go to for sponsorship opportunities, volunteering, food vendor and International Marketplace. l

We are always looking for new board of directors and/or committee members. All meetings are held at 11:30 a.m. second Tuesday of the month. Help us make Collingwood the best in business. l

Congratulations to the Jr. BIA’s 2nd Annual Vancity Case Study

The Collingwood Jr. BIA organized their second case study held February 9th at Windermere Secondary School. Thirty students participated in the case study on a professional day and spent all day 8 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Working on ideas to help Vancity connect with youth in the community and to educate youth on the Co-Op business model. A huge thank you to board member Angela Lam, Branch Manager of the Collingwood location, other Vancity judges and Ms. Tam, Mr. Kam and Mr. Robson, Starbucks Boundary Plaza and Collingwood Safeway for your donations. For more information on the Jr. BIA go to

Become more involved and Join the Board of Directors

If your business is located within the Collingwood BIA’s boundaries you are a member of the BIA. The area is Kingsway between Boundary Road and Rupert Street.


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March 2016


Spring break drama classes This year, Green Thumb Theatre is offering Spring Break Drama Camps for Grades 1 -3 and 4 -7. In this daily 3.5 hour drama camp, the two age groups will alternate between Creative Drama and Adventures in Speech Arts (1.5 hours in each class) with a supervised snack break in between classes. Instructors will modify individual classes to fit the age range of each group. Creative Drama and Adventures Speech Arts perfectly demonstrate the benefits of arts education. Not only are they both fun and creative, they teach empowering skills students will use throughout their lives.


to Know You Eno nough E l l a m ugh to Serve You – S

riginal O s ’ r e v Vancou ore Food St

re! pic es & Mo s , Herbs , S n ea B r, u dients in i s , Flo • Bulk Gra Stop for Bakin g Ingre e • On e Option s • Glute n Fre & Gras s Fe d Meats ate d No n -Medic Choic es • Organic , h Organic it w e c u d tio n • Fres h Pro Beauty Sec d n a h lt ea H he es e • Natura l electio n of C S e g u H a el i & • In Store D

1595 Kingsway, Vancouver, B.C. • 604-872-3019 OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 8am - 9pm

Drama Camp sessions will end with a casual and fun showcase for an audience of family and friends. The two sessions will be individualized and different – so you can register your child for both weeks! DATES: March 14 to 18 and March 21 to 24 LOCATION: Green Thumb Theatre, 5522 McKinnon Street, Vancouver (on the site of Sir Guy Carleton Elementary School) COST: March 14 to 18: $150; March 21 to 24: $120 For more information or to register your child call 604-254-4055 or email Find more info at http://www. drama-camps/