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T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

PRITAM KAUR HAYRE:

Living history PAGE 4

PHO P PH HOTO: O D DA AN TO OUL U GOE GOET T

FALL F ALL 2 2017 017

ART THERAPY:

Brock Fahrni PAGE 10

TRAVEL:

Japan sake tour PAGE 14

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7


FROM THE

editor

SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

You never know when you’re going to run into a good story and this cover of Lifetime is a great example of that.

Recently someone told me about a group of South Asian women who meet regularly at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House who quietly give back to this city. They donate knitting to help with fundraising at hospitals and are quick to pull out their wallets when it comes to giving cash to worthy causes, most recently to organizations assisting people displaced by the wildfires burning across the province. The group is just one example of the many in this city who give back with no expectation of reward or even a thank you.

I thought that alone was worth a story, but

then, while dropping in on the group, Courier photographer Dan Toulgoet struck up a conversation with someone who told him about a member of the group,

At age 92, Hayre is still a force to be reckoned with... retired farm worker Pritam Kaur Hayre. She, as it turns out, was instrumental in the Farm Workers Union movement in the 1970s and 1980s. Seeing first-hand the appalling treatment many

berry, fruit and vegetable pickers faced at the time, Hayre took it upon herself to get involved and she helped organize rallies, walked picket lines and became a shop steward all in an effort to better the lives of others. At age 92, Hayre is still a force to be reckoned with and still picks berries, but now only to help others. Of course if you simply passed Hayre on the street, you’d have no idea the elderly woman played such an instrumental role in this province’s history, which is exactly why I find her and her story so interesting. I hope you do, too.

Active. Engaged. Inspired. Social. Useful. Do these words ring a bell? Brock House Society is an activity centre for men and women 55+ in a unique heritage setting at Jericho Beach. You will be impressed at the rich variety of programs and events for anyone seeking to engage in lifelong learning and a healthy lifestyle. The cachet of our heritage building provides amenities not found elsewhere. It has a library and fireplaces, a fully equipped workshop, art and music rooms, a state of the art audio-visual system to enhance our moderated discussions and lectures, and, the icing on the cake, a Conservatory where friends enjoy lunch or a coffee break with one of the best views in Vancouver. We are a self-funded, self-administered organization supported by a small staff, so if you’re interested in volunteering, we have numerous opportunities to match your skills, interests and availability. Visit www.brockhousesociety.com and check us out. You will be surprised at the richness and variety of our programs and events.

T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

Ramesh Kalia

Giving back

PHOTO: DAN TOULGOET

SANDRA THOMAS STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

South Asian senior women’s group donates time and money back to local communities The women gathered in the multi-purpose room at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House on a warm and sunny August afternoon are awash in colour. Adorned in beautiful saris and scarves, the more than 50 women gathered create a rainbow effect in vibrant shades of red, green, purple, white, yellow, orange, blue and pink. But as lovely as the women look itÕs not fashion theyÕve gathered on this day to discuss. Instead theyÕre part of the South Asian WomenÕs Wellness Program, which meets at the neighbourhood house every Monday afternoon to discuss the news, both local and from their home countries, take part in a Tai Chi class, socialize, offer peer support and Ñ when the need calls Ñ raise money for worthy causes.

everything from elder abuse to caregivers to scams and fraud.Ó Kalia says the women are generous not only when giving cash donations, but also of their time. A group within the group knits and donates items sold at hospitals and care homes as a way to contribute to that facilityÕs fundraising efforts. The women recently turned their attention to raising money for groups assisting with wild fire relief across B.C.

Speaking through an interpreter, 85-yearold Nachattar Kaur Hundle says sheÕs been volunteering for 35 years at both at Sunset Community Centre and South Vancouver Neighbourhood House. HundleÕs specialty is cooking South Asian favourites, including rice, chick peas and roti (Indian flatbread), for fundraising Seniors Hub council member Ramesh Kalia meals. Like the other women in the group is a volunteer facilitator of the group, which Hundle says she always helped others is run informally out of the neighbourhood back in India, so when she moved to Vancouver in 1978, she simply continued. house, alongside Mohinder Sidhu.

ÒItÕs about seniors helping seniors,Ó says Kalia of the group that at full strength includes 72 women. ÒWe talk about

ÒCanada gave us a lot of things,Ó says Hundle. ÒWe are community members now and must give back.Ó

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

PRITAM KAUR HAYRE

Living

SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Farm worker Pritam Kaur Hayre played an instrumental part in the Canadian Farmworkers Union movement.

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It was in July 13, 1980 when farm worker Pritam Kaur Hayre was fired from her job picking fruits and vegetables at Sabaloy’s Farm in retaliation for her participation in a march and rally in Clearbrook the day before.

According to a history of the farm workers’ movement in the Fraser Valley of the 1970s and ’80s complied by researchers at Simon Fraser University, the Canadian Farmworkers Union (CFU) had held the protest to demand an end to the farm labour contract system used to hire workers. At the time, contractors who did the hiring were keeping between

25 to 40 per cent of the farm workers’ wages. Shortly after, Hayre was featured on the cover of a CFU pamphlet with a headline that reads, “Farmworkers need your support.”

Fast forward to 2017 and Hayre is sitting in a meeting room at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House, a white scarf covering most of her silver hair and small gold hoops adorning her ears. With the help of interpreters Ramesh Kalia and Chindo Ojala, the soon-to-be 92-yearold reminisces about those years and her early days in Canada.

Executive member Pritam Kaur at the Utah Phillips benefit concert for the Canadian Farmworkers Union at John Oliver High School, Vancouver, September 27, 1981. PHOTOS: THE CANADIAN FARMWORKERS UNION COLLECTION

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history

In 1975, at 50 years old, Hayre moved to B.C. from Punjab, India.

“I picked berries for 40 years,” says Hayre. “I couldn’t speak the language, but I was strong. I’d pick 50 flats of raspberries, blue berries, blackberries, strawberries

ÒI couldnÕt speak the language, but I was strong.Ó

and cranberries. My brother almost drowned when we were picking cranberries, but I pulled him out of the water.”

Hayre’s husband passed away when she was just 28, so when her son offered to sponsor her to come to Canada she agreed. But her new life in Canada did not go as planned. Hayre says her daughter-in-law wanted her to stay home to look after their children instead of going out to work and, when she refused, she was forced to leave their home. With no money or resources Hayre says there were days she was so hungry she ate raw potatoes from the farms where she worked across the Lower Mainland, including in Abbotsford, Langley, Richmond and Surrey, often 12 hours a day, seven days a week. Hayre became involved in helping to form the union after some young women

T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

came to her complaining of sexual harassment.

“The young girls said the farmer had no pants,” Hayre said with the help of her two friends and interpreters, who gasped as she told her story. “So I went to see him. He threatened me with a gun, but I said, ‘I’m here and I’m not going away.’” It was then, in 1980, that Hayre became a symbol of strength to dozens of other workers who began to rally around her. Hayre then began her work helping the CFU by attending protests and rallies fighting for minimum wage and basic workers’ rights, including access to clean water and

Pritam Kaur Hayre

CONTINUED ON PAGE 6

PHOTO: DAN TOULGOET

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5

daycare. Hayre also helped organize a boycott of one of the farms, blowing a horn to gather the 200 workers to stand up against the owner. Led by Hayre, the farm workers took their case to court and won a cash settlement, which was divided amongst them. Previously the workers were making less than $2 an hour. As Hayre speaks it’s obvious the years of hard work and sorrow have taken their

ÒIf someone comes and needs help, IÕm there,Ó she says. toll. She’s lived in the same basement suite off of Fraser Street for almost 40 years with no TV or phone, but at almost 92 still loves to garden — and pick berries. “Now I pick berries for fun,” she says. “Or if someone needs extra money, I pick berries for them too.”

Hayre is also quick to help worthy causes outside of her community as part of the South Asian Women’s Wellness Program, which meets at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House every Monday. It’s here she keeps up with news from here and India, takes part in Tai Chi classes and socializes with other women over tea. Hayre also attends the nearby Sikh temple. “If someone comes and needs help, I’m there,” she says.

Canadian Farmworkers Union fourth national convention was held at the IWA Hall in New Westminster and attended by 36 delegates April 15, 1984. PHOTO: THE CANADIAN FARMWORKERS UNION COLLECTION

CFU executive member Pritam Kaur Hayre and fellow farmworkers rally at a Canadian FarmworkersÕ Union demonstration protesting the exclusion of farmworkers from health and safety regulations at Robson Square, Vancouver, April 10, 1983. PHOTO: THE CANADIAN FARMWORKERS UNION COLLECTION

Many frail or homebound seniors look forward to meal deliveries each weekday from Meals on Wheels.

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Join our dedicated volunteer team serving meals across Vancouver & Richmond. Learn more about the Meals on Wheels program, become a volunteer, or donate to support our 50th Anniversary Celebration Fundraiser at

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T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

EVENT SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Popular Lifetime Seniors Talks + Tables back at VanDusen Botanical Garden Sept. 20. Free seniors event offers lectures and demos. The Vancouver Courier and St. Paul’s Foundation are partnering to produce the annual Lifetime Seniors Talks + Tables event, which takes place at VanDusen Botanical Garden Sept. 20 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Highlights of the day include Dialogue on Aging — a public presentation series with informative speakers, tables offering information on supports and services, and interesting demonstrations. Check out the schedule below to best plan your day.

SCHEDULE 11:00 A.M. – 2:45 P.M. Visit Health Talk Tables and displays in the Floral Hall.

! Arthritis and Your

Hands Miranda Lee and Jennifer Li, occupational therapists from Holy Family Hospital, Providence Health Care.

! Check your Strength and Balance Yee Tse, physiotherapy practice

coordinator, Vancouver Coastal Health.

12:15 P.M. Visit Health Talks tables in both the BMO Theatre and Floral Hall.

2:15 P.M. Update from B.C. Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie (BMO).

1:00 P.M. Around the World in 365 Days Jo-Ann Tait, director of elder care and palliative care for Providence Health Care.

2:45 P.M. Lifetime Senior Volunteer of the Year will be presented by Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie in the BMO Theatre.

1:45 P.M. Visit Health Talks tables in both the BMO Hall and Floral Hall.

3:00 P.M. Participants can begin to make their way out of the theatre.

Fall 2016 Lifetime cover woman Cathy Brown at last yearÕs event.

! Navigating the Health

Care System Chris Whyte, residential social worker from Brock Fahrni Pavilion, Providence Health Care, and Bronwen Morgan, facility laison, Vancouver Coastal Health.

11:30 A.M. Healthy Aging — Living Healthy (BMO) Education consultant Pamela Hamilton.

Talks + Tables tips The Lifetime Seniors’ Talks + Tables event is four-hours long so you should plan strategically if you want to spend the afternoon. Here are a few pointers to make your day that much more pleasant. ! There will be a table with greeters set up at both the

visitor centre, which is home to the BMO Theatre, and above by the parking lot outside the Floral Hall.

! Dress accordingly. (Fingers crossed the sun will shine.) ! No pets allowed, with the exception of service animals. ! Bring a snack: Truffles cafe in the visitor centre is

offering coupons towards food, but it can be busy at peak times.

! There will be two wheelchairs on hand for anyone

who needs help moving up or down the hill from one building to the other, but availability will be limited at busy times so plan ahead.

! Also under the topic of Òplanning ahead,Ó choose which talk you most want to hear and get there early to ensure you have a seat. Same goes with demonstrations.

! London Drugs has kindly donated several hundred

shopping bags, which will be filled with some reading material, coupons and maybe even a treat. The bags will be given out on a first-come, first served basis.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

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Youville resident Harold Stubbs says music therapy helped him make friends. PHOTOS: DAN TOULGOET

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As the sun shines through the windows of a common room at Youville Residence on Heather Street, five residents seated around an over-sized drum use sticks to keep time to The Happy Wanderer, a song made popular in the 1950s after the BBC broadcast a version performed by a German children’s choir made up largely of war orphans.

are walkers, bongo drums, maracas (rumba shakers), tambourines and percussion bells, which all are put into use at some point during the afternoon. There are smiles all around as the residents sing and play. This is what music therapy looks like at Youville, a multi-level care facility home to senior residents and older adults needing specialized mental health services operated by Providence Health Care.

ÒI try to achieve non-musical goals using music.Ó

As certified music therapist Lorri Johnson sings the famous lyrics, “A knapsack on my back...,” the residents bang along with what look like traditional drumsticks with hockey pucks attached to the end. Besides Johnson, the group is joined by a care aid who, when needed, jumps up to wipe a nose or return a wayward instrument. Scattered across the room

Johnson says the sessions are about much more than simply playing instruments and singing. “I try to achieve nonmusical goals using music. Those include socialization, self-expression, listening,

The oversized drum used for music therapy at Youville.


musicc cognitive and physical,” says Johnson, who adds she was heavily influenced by her musical parents. While her

T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

credentialed professionals “use music purposefully within therapeutic relationships to support development, health, and well-being. Music therapists use music safely and ethically to address human needs within cognitive, communicative, emotional, musical, physical, social, and spiritual domains.”

Lorri Johnson (CENTRE) leads the music therapy program at Youville.

dad played guitar and sang with her and her sisters, it was her mom who taught her how to “sing spontaneously.”

According to the Canadian Association of Music Therapists, music therapy is a discipline in which

But health benefits aside it’s obvious everyone taking part on this day is having fun, including Harold Stubbs who, along with best friend Marlene Stasyk, was banging drums and playing bells. Stasyk says after the 92-yearold Stubbs moved into Youville two years ago, the music sessions encouraged him to socialize.

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“The drum circle really helped English, but sings along with us,” says Johnson. “Music him get to know people,” she says of the former airplane breaks down barriers and music therapy helps people mechanic who is largely with Alzheimer’s, children and non-verbal. “Now we’re all people with like family and head injuries, attend events like Christmas ÒThe drum circle anyone who’s been parties and we really helped traumatized. all dress up in red and white him get to know But my heart always for Canada people...Ó has been with Day. It’s a lot seniors.” of fun.” Johnson says many new residents to Youville insist they can’t sing. What she’s found is that as soon as a resident feels they’re in a safe environment, they happily join in.

Breaking into the much-loved You are my Sunshine, Johnson is quickly joined on the drums by the residents who sing along to the familiar tune. It’s the smiles around the drum that tell the real story.

“We also have a Chinese senior here who doesn’t speak

“We’re definitely like family now,” says Johnson.

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Art The wall in David DennisonÕs room at Brock Fahrni is filled with his artwork. PHOTOS: DAN TOULGOET

SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Veterans discover hidden talents at Brock Fahrni

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“We’ll meet again, Don’t know where, Don’t know when, But I know we’ll meet again some sunny day...” The crooning of Second World War favourite Vera Lynn wafts softly from the overhead speakers in the Artworks studio at Brock Fahrni Pavilion on Oak Street on a warm August afternoon. The song choice is fitting when you consider the three men sitting around a large arts-and-crafts table are all veterans of the Second World War, including a former Lancaster bomber pilot named Ron Cox who is covering a piece of canvas with blue paint. Cox says once the piece is complete the blue will act as sky and backdrop to the image of a Lancaster plane he intends to paint over it. Across the table from Cox is veteran and retired salesman Alfred Best, who says there was a time he “couldn’t even draw a cat.” The statement is hard to believe considering the beautiful silk scarf adorned with delicate purple flowers that Best is showing off. The scarf is one of more

than 20 the 91-year-old has painted since joining the art therapy program at the longterm care facility that’s home to 148 residents, many of whom are veterans. “The scarf is a gift for Cecilia, one of the caregivers here,” Best says, showing off a handprinted card he also made for his friend. “The greatest satisfaction I get is making someone else happy.” Best moved into Brock Fahrni from his Coal Harbour home two years ago, in January, after suffering a heart attack and several strokes. It wasn’t long afterwards he joined the art

program and discovered his hidden talent. “I had to give up singing so this is my consolation,” says Best, whose wife died 12 years ago after 60 years of marriage. “I used to play the violin and was music director of a church choir so I miss it. But that’s OK; I’m a positive thinker.” Like most activities offered at Brock Fahrni, which falls under the umbrella of Providence Healthcare, the art program is supported by several veterans associations, including Veterans Affairs Canada, the Royal Canadian Legion and Army Navy Air Force Veterans in Canada. Arts and crafts instructor Paddi McGrath says the art program, which started during the Second World War, is a great way to draw residents out of their shell and encourage them to socialize. For those who can’t leave their room, art therapy staff members go to them with supplies and instruction. Once a week, an instructor wheels the “Art Cart” around the entire facility encouraging residents who aren’t already involved in the program to try their hand at something artistic.


T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

THERAPY After moving to Brock Fahrni Alfred Best discovered he had a talent for painting.

“Sometimes you find someone who is isolated,” says McGrath. “Art is a way to get them socializing. We focus on veterans, but the workshops are for everyone.”

Irving Bakerman, 94, who had recently been confined to his bed due to a health issue, says his art is “getting

there.” But the swing table across Bakerman’s bed is chock full of art supplies so they’re available to him at any time, demonstrating his interest is more than passing. The charming senior and former wholesale clothing salesman says he enjoys the reception he gets when presenting someone

with a one-of-a-kind handmade gift.

“I love the gracious comments,” says Bakerman, with a grin. “Every day when I go downstairs I couldn’t look forward to it more. Who knows, I might be discovered one day yet.”

“At first they gave me books, but I wasn’t too keen,” says Dennison, showing off a realistic painting of his son and daughter-in-law he was in the midst of completing. “I’m grateful for these departments or I’d go crazy.” Meanwhile, McGrath calls what she does her “dream job.” “I once read poetry to a man as he was passing,” says McGrath. “It was poetry he wrote himself so it was very special.”

David Dennison shows off a recent portrait he painted of his son and wife.

David Dennison also paints from his bed, but even under a blanket it’s easy to see the strapping young man he was. Paintings and drawings on his wall depict Dennison’s favourite subjects, scenes from the Old West and the arctic, including many of wolves. After retiring from the Air Force in 1992, Dennison taught at a remote school for boys in northern B.C. where he learned to hunt and fish, not paint and draw.

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T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

Caregiver support SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Family Caregivers of B.C. offers advice & support When one decides to become caregiver to a family member, the role can not only be rewarding, but also take a toll physically, financially and emotionally. Barbara McLean, executive director of Family Caregivers of British Columbia, says there are about one million people — more than one in four — in the province juggling work and care. What does Family Caregivers of B.C. do? Our mission is to improve the quality of life for family caregivers through information, support, education and leadership. Through our toll-free Caregiver Support Line

(1-877-520-3267), family and friend caregivers receive emotional support, receive help navigating the often confusing healthcare system, and can find referrals to community services. For more complex situations, we offer Caregiver Coaching sessions to problem solve and create realistic action plans. Are family caregivers eligible for any compensation from the government? Most are in the form of tax credits versus direct compensation. What other resources should a family caregiver explore? Respite, respite, respite. Short breaks are essential.

And how should they do that? Enlist your personal family and friend networks to help you get the break you need — research shows it’s imperative for ongoing health. Formal respite is available through Home and Community Care Programs in B.C. but varies according to location. It’s important to keep family members at home when possible, but is there a breaking point or burnout factor, caregivers should also be aware of? Absolutely. You’ve heard it before — you need to put on your own air mask first on an airplane and the same idea goes for caregiving. We see many caregivers who don’t realize they’re headed for burnout. It may creep up on you, so look for the signs. Check out webinars for information on topics such as Caregiving 101 and Things to Know on the Caregiving Journey at familycaregiversbc. ca/events/webinars/.

I didn’t expect to bring Bella with me.

TIMELY TIPS FOR FAMILY CAREGIVERS ! Get help with tasks and

chores early on in the illness Ñ your loved one will get used to having other people around the home.

! Involve other members

of your family from the beginning of the illness even if youÕre the only one who sees the changes taking place. Pass this information on as information only Ñ not as a debating issue.

! Access all the

information you can about the illness and educate yourself as much as possible about its progression.

! Recognize and learn

to accept that anger, anxiety and guilt are normal feelings given the situation youÕre experiencing Ñ they

come not only from being tired, but also from the losses youÕre experiencing.

! Join a support group as

soon as you can. You do not need to be alone on this journey.

! Every change in your

loved one means more adaptation and change for you. Acknowledge this gives you the right to feel off-balance some days.

! Forgive yourself for not

being perfect. Caring for someone with a chronic or terminal illness turns your life inside out.

! Make friends with your

family physician and ask for time to speak with her/him alone if you need to do so.

! Get regular physical

check-ups, eat a balanced diet and try to take time out to express sadness, anger and helplessness. Accept yourself for being human and try to do at least one thing that you enjoy every day.

! Take one day at a time

while planning for the future. Good planning means getting to know and implementing any legal and financial considerations, facility placement issues and palliative care. And donÕt forget to be kind to yourself.

Dorothy Orr, Family Caregivers of B.C. Caregiver Coach SEE RELATED REPORT PAGE 18

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

Japanese Much of the sake made in Japan is still hand-crafted from start to finish. PHOTOS: SANDRA THOMAS

SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Ancient sake breweries offer tours and tastings

Standing on an ancient cobbled street in Saijo, a neighbourhood of Higashihiroshima, Japan, I was astounded to discover the area dates back to the fifth century.

the fact sake brewing began in Saijo in 1675, at a time when the area, then known as Saijo Yokkaichi, was already a prosperous resort town — and Canada, not so much.

I had just flown to Japan from Vancouver, Canada, where plans were in full swing to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Confederation, which we all thought was a pretty big deal. Adding to my amazement was

I was visiting Japan as part of a group of eight writers from across the globe. Seven were experts in sake — and then there was me. But what I quickly discovered was that besides not knowing a lot of

THE HERITAGE HOUSE AND THE COACH HOUSE, VIEW FROM 67TH AVENUE.

technical terms, it was still very easy to admire and appreciate the time, attention to detail, history, culture and quality that goes into almost every bottle produced in Japan, at least in the breweries we had the honour to visit. Honour makes up a large part of Japanese culture, so creating a quality product is extremely important to the master brewers we had the opportunity to meet. And after learning just what goes into making a really great

knowledgable guide Etsuko Nakamura, tour leader and CEO of Sake Brewery Tours. Nakamura is an advanced sake professional certified by the Sake Education Council, a government certified bilingual sake, I was also surprised to English guide and a Sake find out how affordable it Samurai. Fearing pride for is in Japan — I bought gold the traditional beverage was award-winning sake for about being lost, the Japan Sake $15 CDN and other really good Brewers Association Junior bottles for about $10. Council created Sake Samurai, a group made up of members Feeling somewhat out of my who share a love of the drink league to begin with, I was and the desire to nurture, happy to depend on our very

restore its pride and spread sake culture not only at home, but also around the world. In plain speak, Nakamur is more than qualified in helping newcomers feel like they know what they’re doing. However, I have to admit it took me a couple of days to figure out the rest of my group was spitting out all of their sake during our numerous tastings — oops. Saijo, known as the “City of Sake,” is now home to

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sake scene

numerous breweries, some dedicated to traditional methods of production and others which have embraced new technology. Each brewery makes its own original sake and many of them are included on a self-guided tasting tour that starts just a few minutes walk from the JR Saijo train. Make sure you stop by the tourist information office near the station to pick up a walking map of the tour — the maps are available in English.

Guides are also available to assist with tours and offer information on everything from the history and making of sake to information on Saijo itself. These guided tours are free on the 10th day of each month. Due to the quality of the local water used to make sake, water tasting tours are

also a popular pastime in Saijo. And while the tastings are free, I happily picked up inexpensive bottles of sake and small souvenirs, including some beautifully handcrafted sake soap, to show my appreciation.

Saijo is a beautiful town so steeped in history you can also spend a day there visiting ancient temples and shrines without drinking a drop of alcohol.

Some of the breweries included on the tour, include:

KAMOTSURU SAKE BREWING COMPANY kamotsuru.jp Kamotsuru was the sake of choice for feudal lords who stayed in Saijo in the Edo period (1604-1868). Beginning in 1970, the brewery began a winning streak of 18 gold medals at the National New Sake Competition. Visitors can

Telltale silos mark the sake district of Saijo.

also see how sake is brewed and taste a variety of sakes.

Street designs mark the sake brewery tour path in Saijo, Japan.

FUKUBIJIN fukubijin.co.jp Known as a “feminine” sake, this beverage is famous for its deep flavours and clean finish. KAMOIZUMI kamoizumi.co.jp Founded in 1912, Kamiozumi has focused its efforts on brewing a product true to the origins of sake flavor, even during the 1960s when it became popular to add large amounts of grain alcohol to make a version called “sanzoushu.” In 1971, Kamoizumi became famous across Japan for producing a junmai ginjo grade sake using rice milled down to 60 per cent, which

was unheard of in those days. Toji Yukio Masuda, a consummate journeyman of junmai-shu brewing, is well respected as the oldest living active master brewer in Hiroshima. Kamoizumi sake has a slightly golden colour, thanks to a lack of carbon filtering, an omission that also helps to retain a rich and mellow flavor. KIREI SHUZOU CO. The brewery was named Kirei, which refers to the old age

of a turtle, because sake has long been believed to have medicinal properties. The name was chosen to suggest that those who drink Kirei sake might live as long as a turtle. This brewery is rich in tradition and was the first to be awarded an honorary award in the National Seishu (sake) Competition. For more information, visit saketours.com.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

In support of Legions SANDRA THOMAS | STHOMAS@VANCOURIER.COM

Want to meet new people in this city? Check out a Legion. What’s better than a luau at a Legion? A meat draw at a luau at a Legion — the Billy Bishop/ Kerrisdale Legion on Kits Point to be exact. Before visiting the Billy on the B.C. Day long weekend, it had been a while

since my husband and I had been to any Royal Canadian Legion. We used to visit the Maple Ridge branch annually on Remembrance Day with my husband’s dad, but with his passing several

years ago we gave up that ritual. We also used to visit the Billy for fun, but since we moved to the most south-east corner of the city it’s just too far for us to drop in for a beer — or meat draw.

But when we got an invitation from friends to join them at the annual Hawaiian luau at the Billy on the long weekend, it was an offer we couldn’t refuse. For some background, the Kerrisdale Legion closed earlier this year and its members and board of directors recently transferred to create a new joint operation,

the Billy Bishop/Kerrisdale Legion, but still fondly known as the Billy. Dressed in our finest alohawear, we made our way to the Legion ahead of the 4:30 p.m. meat draw, which allowed me an opportunity to observe the couples, single women, single men and even a family with a toddler as they wandered into the outdoor patio of the Legion. Who knew the Billy had a patio? And did I mention the drinks are cheap?

really enjoyed how much everyone had gotten into the spirit of the day and dressed the part. We would have made Don Ho proud.

And when it came time to eat, everyone lined up politely with not a soul attempting to cut in line, which is pretty much unheard of these days. Prior to the luau feast, which included a whole pig roasted on a spit on in an oversized barbecue, a group of Polynesian-style dancers from Vancouver-based Wailele And while much of the crowd Wai Wai entertained us with was made up of baby boomers hula performed by both men and seniors, there were and women. Following their enough younger, hipster types performances we all happily meandering in to show that one contributed to a tip bucket of Vancouver’s best-kept secrets after hearing the dancers had is slowing being leaked to the volunteered their time to masses. I mean if a bearded perform for us. I mean, who hipster dressed like a Hawaiian does that? tourist from the 1950s taking part in a meat draw at a vintage Our afternoon at the Billy was a reminder there are still Legion isn’t the epitome of friendly folks left in this city ironic, I don’t know what is. who know how to have a good But they were having fun — time and not take themselves and so were we. Everyone was too seriously. You don’t need so friendly it reminded me, to buy a membership to visit sadly, that oftentimes in this the Billy, though we would city of glass many folks aren’t have if we lived a little closer. exactly the most welcoming. Instead we signed in at the bar And after a couple of people and that was it — as the sign asked us our names, we just out front says, “Everyone is became part of the pack. I also welcome.”

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DiscoverTapestry.com Tapestry at Wesbrook Village 3338 Wesbrook Mall, Vancouver BC 604.225.5000 Tapestry at Arbutus Walk 2799 Yew Street, Vancouver BC 604.736.1640 ® Registered trademarks of Concert Properties Ltd., used under license where applicable.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER T H U R SDAY, SE P T E M B E R 1 4 , 2 0 1 7

Unpaid caregiver ISOBEL MACKENZIE | SENIORS’ ADVOCATE, PROVINCE OF BRITISH COLUMBIA

Seniors Advocate estimates savings to the province about $3.5 billion Among the myriad of issues associated with aging, the question of how best to care for seniors if they require help can be one of the most complex, confusing and exhausting areas to address. For many seniors, care inevitably rests on the shoulders of spouses, children, friends or neighbours. The care provided is typically unpaid, largely unrecognized by society and, often, underappreciated. Increasingly, as our population ages, the question is not if someone will be faced with the reality of caring for an elderly loved

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A message from the SeniorsÕ Advocate one, but when. The care that more than one million unpaid caregivers in British Columbia provide each day varies greatly. It may be a simple ride to the grocery store or it could be full 24-hour live-in help. Many caregivers view these tasks as a privilege, others a duty and some a burden.

As I travel the province, hearing the stories of seniors and their families, I continue to be humbled by the commitment of this network of care that is a critical pillar in the stability of our health care system. The personal stories, when combined with the available data about caregivers and those for whom they care, paints a vivid picture of a system under stress. This is similar to the picture that emerged in our 2015 report Caregivers in Distress: More Respite Needed. When we examined levels of caregiver distress in 2015,

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stress on the rise

we found that 29 per cent of caregivers were experiencing distress (defined as feeling distressed, angry or depressed) or were not able to continue in caring activities. Two years later, when we looked at the most current data, we saw that this number had actually risen from 29 per cent to 31 per cent. This trend is disturbing on its own, but when we also looked at the supports available to unpaid caregivers, such as adult day programs, respite and home support, we saw that they are increasingly not keeping pace with the aging

population and that on the whole are less accessible than we reported in 2015. All of this is compounded by the documented increasing complexity of care needs within the home support population over the past two years.

This report demonstrates that we can be doing more to support unpaid caregivers. There are many steps that we need to take to address the growing trend of caregiver distress. The recommendations identified in this report offer a focused starting point for the critical work that lies ahead.

On behalf of my office and the continuing work that we conduct, I would like to thank all those who provided data and assisted with the development of this report. Most importantly, I want to personally thank all the wives, husbands, sons, daughters, assorted other family members and friends and neighbours who are caring for a loved one. Your sacrifices are acknowledged and appreciated; I am confident there is a commitment to supporting you as a caregiver, and I hope you can find more relief in the future.

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Caregivers in Distress: A Growing Problem The report, Caregivers in Distress: A Growing Problem, is an update to a 2015 report that indicated 29 per cent of unpaid caregivers are experiencing symptoms of distress such as anger, depression or feelings of not being able to continue with their care-giving duties. Data highlighted in the current report indicate rates of distress have increased by seven to 31 per cent. Mackenzie says there are approximately one million unpaid caregivers in the province whose paid value is estimated to be $3.5 billion. ÒThe importance of maximizing supports canÕt be underestimated when we consider costly alternatives such as residential care or hospital stays.Ó The report focuses on the caregivers of individuals receiving publicly subsidized home support in the province, as this is the only sub-set of the care-giving community where measurable data using detailed health care assessments are available. This report also relies on data that tracks key support services such as adult day programs, which provide regular programming and relief to caregivers, respite in residential care

facilities, and additional home support services that also help provide a reprieve from care-giving duties. Key findings of the report include:

! In 2015/2016, 31 per cent of clients

had a primary caregiver in distress. This is a seven per cent increase from the 2015 report.

! Over this period, the actual number

of primary caregivers identifying as distressed increased by more than 1,000, which represents a 14 per cent increase in the actual number of caregivers in distress.

! The number of home support clients accessing adult day programs decreased by five per cent and the number of days delivered to these clients decreased by two per cent.

! The average hours of home support

per day per client over 65 decreased by five per cent, signalling less intensive service.

The full report is expected to be released September 15.

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