Tag Archives: Bedford

Community Herald: Mother seeks community support for son

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Noah and his friends having a giggle fest in CP Allen Learning Centre with Tristan Dunn (clockwise from top), Tara Weston, Noah Isenor, Noah’s best buddy Brady Gerrior and CP Allen High School student and services department head Lauren Emanuel. (Cyndi Sweeney)

‘It takes a village.’ A phrase often describing support by the greater community in helping a child. Local mom Tara Weston is reaching out to her community: a last effort to keep her son’s wheelchair lift van and pay his remaining medical bills.

Her goal is to crowdfund $5 from 5,000 people, to raise a total of $25,000 in support of Noah’s journey.

“I’m just trying to put myself in a positive mindset. If 5,000 people gave $5, we’d have Noah’s van,” says Weston, who recently had to sell their family home to keep Noah’s fundamental transportation.

“If we can’t raise the money … and we lose this van, Noah basically has no access within the community anymore,” she says.

Noah has stage five spastic quadriplegia and cerebral palsy, he is legally blind and is speech impaired. Soon he will undergo his 38th surgery at the IWK.

Despite Noah’s many surgeries and daily seizures, his smile is full of joy and “he has chocolate eyes that melt your heart,” says Lauren Emanuel, student and services department head at CP Allen High School.

“They’re having a giggle-fest today,” says Jenny-Kate Hadley, vice principal at CP Allen. Noah and his friends sit laughing around their classroom table. “Noah is so engaged with the students,” says Emanuel.

Weston says the family has spent close to $220,000 over the past 15 years and his ongoing nursing and attendant needs have been assessed in excess of $7,600 per month. “We’ve great health care coverage here in Canada, but between insurance and provincial health coverage, it doesn’t cover all his medical expenses,” says Weston, leaving $3,800 each month not covered.

The family recently moved to an apartment in Bedford, from their family home specially designed for people with special needs.

“We couldn’t afford a house and a van, so we had to choose what Noah needed. We thought, it doesn’t matter where we live, if Noah had a good quality of life and can get around in the community … he’ll be happy.”

Having exhausted every avenue of financial help, from non-profit, government, friends and family, Weston says $5 from 5,000 is literally their last resort. With more than 400,000 people living in HRM, it’s a goal she says she hopes is attainable for Noah.

Read more on Noah’s Journey  in the Community Herald.

*Note: Since last week the family has raised $1,256 in donations and are now hoping to raise $23,000.

To donate, go to www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/noah-s-journey/201524 or find the link by visiting Noah’s Journey on Facebook.

Bedford-Sackville Observer: The power of sunflower

Beneath their “labour of love,” a 25 foot off-grid solar sunflower at Farmer’s Best along Bedford Highway, Sunflower Solar partners Keith Crews, Steven Weagle and Kirsten Weagle want Nova Scotians to know solar power has never been more accessible. (Cyndi Sweeney)
Beneath their “labour of love,” a 25 foot off-grid solar sunflower at Farmer’s Best along Bedford Highway, Sunflower Solar partners Keith Crews, Steven Weagle and Kirsten Weagle want Nova Scotians to know solar power has never been more accessible. (Cyndi Sweeney)

 “With our heat pump, we went down about 35 per cent on our power bill by just changing the water heater,” says Steven Weagle, president of Sunflower Solar.

Spring is not quite here, but meander around a bend on the Bedford Highway and a 25-foot sunflower is in full bloom at Farmer’s Best market. The off-grid solar beacon of sunshine was recently installed by Sunflower Solar and together the two businesses are cooperatively marketing solar energy to Nova Scotians.

“Solar has never been more affordable than it is now … we’re a little bit behind in Canada, but we’re catching up,” says Kirsten Weagle, one of four partners at Sunflower Solar Inc.

“Solar is totally modular so just about anything is possible from a homeowner or even a commercial business perspective,” says Weagle.

Originally from Lower Sackville, Weagle says he loves technology and being hands-on with innovating solar power. He says the sunflower project took about a year and a half and is a labour of love and a progression from engineering solar-powered hot dog vending carts in Ontario and Nova Scotia.

Read how solar power can reduce your household energy bills here.

For more info on solar energy visit www.sunflowersolar.ca and for solar energy solutions and rebates information visit www.efficiencyns.ca/energy-solutions/solar.

Community Herald: Baseball without borders

 

Ambassadors for baseball in Nova Scotia, children from Fall River, Sackville, Hammonds Plains and Halifax are excited for the 2015 Canada - Cuba Goodwill Tour in Feb. Rachel Crawford, Emily MacFadyen, Lauren Sweet, Grace Hartling, Emilie Leger and Erin Cowan (Back Row L-R). Camden Rendell, Kyle Hunt, Ryan Trenholm and Emily Cahill (Front Row L-R)  Photo: Cyndi Sweeney
Ambassadors for baseball in Nova Scotia, children from Fall River, Sackville, Hammonds Plains and Halifax are excited for the 2015 Canada – Cuba Goodwill Tour in Feb. Rachel Crawford, Emily MacFadyen, Lauren Sweet, Grace Hartling, Emilie Leger and Erin Cowan (Back Row L-R). Camden Rendell, Kyle Hunt, Ryan Trenholm and Emily Cahill (Front Row L-R) Photo: Cyndi Sweeney

Local baseball players are returning to Cuba for the 2015 Canada – Cuba Goodwill Tour in February, but this year, girls will join the boys as ambassadors of the Nova Scotia baseball community.

“It’s about encouraging other kids down there, girls in particular, that baseball’s a great sport and there’s great opportunities with it,” says Mike Crawford, head coach of Hammonds Plains 11U “A” team.

But it’s not all about baseball. More than 200 players travelling to Cuba throughout the month of Feb. will have the opportunity to visit the local school in Matanzas, play baseball with local children and deliver school and baseball supplies.

“We’ll probably be contributing more than $60,000 worth of gear to Matanzas baseball program this year with all the teams that are going,” says Dennis Woodworth, the program development team lead.

Only 40 mins. from the resort village of Varadero, Woodworth says Matanzas is a huge baseball community and provides a safe environment for the players.

“Every team goes for a week and they play four-to-five games. We do a school visit every week and our goal is to donate between $4,000 and $5,000 in school supplies,” says Woodworth, who’s been coaching ball since 1987.

Woodworth coordinates the trips from beginning to end and says the idea was sparked in Varadero three years ago when he was given an opportunity to play ball with other baseball enthusiasts, but wanted to take it a step further.

Click for story.

Community Herald: From global to local

Rebecca Perrott, owner of Merciful, a locally run jewelry business, wears earrings handwoven with papyrus, a local grass from Rwanda and displays her current collection for sale.
Rebecca Perrott, owner of Merciful, a locally run jewelry business, wears earrings hand-woven with papyrus, a local grass from Rwanda and displays her current collection for sale.

A small business is weaving it’s way into the Bedford community. When Rebecca Perrott travelled to Kigali, Rwanda to conduct research for her masters degree in International Development Studies, she hadn’t realized a culture of hopeful, creative and inspiring people would lead her to launch Merciful, a locally run jewelry business.

“Merciful means to love mercy. It’s a scripture verse,” says the graduate of Dalhousie University who moved to Nova Scotia from Rothesay, NB.

Along with her husband, Kyle Perrott from Lower Sackville, the couple spent three months in 2011 researching and becoming familiar with Aids Prevention Care and Outreach Ministries (APRECOM), an association supporting families impacted by AIDS, many of them widows.

For the complete story, click here.

Community Herald: How does your community garden grow? The ABCs and 123s of school gardening

Halifax West Learning Centre teacher Jenn Bennett with  EPA Glendalee Clattenburg and students Fallon Osmond, Andrew Conners and Umar Ali (L-R).
Halifax West learning centre teacher Jenn Bennett with EPA Glendalee Clattenburg and students Fallon Osmond, Andrew Conners and Umar Ali (L-R).

Students love anything dirty, messy and outdoors, according to Jenn Bennett. “So what more can you ask for then a school garden project,” exclaims the learning centre teacher from Halifax West High School.

But there’s plenty more than seeds rooting beneath the soil of the students’ raised-bed, low maintenance gardens.

“A lot of students these days don’t know where their food comes from besides what they see in the grocery store … so it’s really great to know that they can be in charge and take ownership of the process involved in making some of the food they consume,” says Bennett. She says there’s also a lot of learning to be thrown in. “As far as measurements and weather systems, food, nutrition and even art … oodles and oodles of stuff you can hide in there!”

Over at CP Allen High School, students are preparing a garden of their own. “Right now they’re measuring and doing some science. They’re measuring every 12 inches and plotting out squares for each vegetable,” says Jill White, the HRSB school nutritionist, as she watches the learning centre students digging and planting amid an early June mist.

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“The garden gives a great opportunity for teaching that food comes from the ground, not a package. But it also builds independence and self-confidence,” says White.

These two high schools are among 32 schools awarded grants for gardening this year. “We supported schools with close to $20,000 in garden grants through the Department of Health and Wellness,” says White.

Emanuel has created a Google Calendar for anyone interested in volunteering. For more info or to volunteer email: letsgetgrowingcpa@gmail.com

Full story here.

Community Herald: Make the most out of March Break

March Bk screenshotKids are electric with excitement as energy pulses through school hallways across the province. It’s T-Minus two days until March Break kick-off. Get ready, get set…for a week of fun and frolicking in and around HRM.

Here’s a few tip-of-the-iceberg scenarios to keep the family charged with quality-time activities and entertainment.  For complete details be sure to read the print version being distributed today.

And for hot-off-the-press advice on outdoor fun and adventure around HRM, check out Winning Winter in the Community Herald.

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Herald Communities: Barrier-free to forge new friendships, independence

Barrier-free to forge new friendships, independenceHenk van Leeuwen, president and CEO of Easter Seals says campers are able and comfortable to forge friendships and enjoy an incredible week of adventure at Camp Tidnish, a barrier-free camp on the scenic Tidnish River, near Amherst.

Barrier-free to forge new friendships, independence

“One of the biggest challenges is just getting over the pre-camp anxiety…but our staff is well trained and work with families,” says Patti Sampson, Camp Tidnish director