The Bennett and Albert County Health Care (BACH) Foundation is a charitable organization that provides funds for the Albert County Health and Wellness Centre and many community initiatives including Sistema-Hillsborough, Tele-Drive, Literacy Express, the Imagination Library, spin bikes in classrooms and Connecting Albert County.
by Janet Wallace
Social isolation is a problem in rural areas – but less so in our area thanks to Tele-Drive Albert County. For a low cost, anyone in the county can be picked up from their house, driven to wherever they need to go, and taken back home again. The result? Seniors who lose their licenses or can’t afford cars are able to live in their own homes longer – Tele-Drive will take them to medical appointments, the grocery store and even social events. Parents of young children can take their children to the doctors, to early literacy events and to the library – a great help if the stay-at-home parent doesn’t have a car.
A lot of work has been taking place to move forward on the priorities of the Community Health Needs Assessment, covering Hillsborough to Alma. Below, you will find the 10 priorities with an update of what is happening under each. Many of the initiatives listed below are supported by the Bennett and Albert County Health Care (BACH) Foundation.
The Albert County Health and Wellness Centre has changed its hours. Please note current hours below. For appointments in Riverside-Albert or Hillsborough, or information about other services, call 882-3100.
We have an adult learning program right in Albert County, in Riverside Albert; a partnership between the Albert County Health & Wellness Centre (which provides the classroom) and the South East Regional Adult Learning Board. One of the graduates wrote of his experience in the program. According to Jim, he and his wife, Mariann, went back to school “largely to encourage others.” Mariann started the program first but had to stop for a year due to a stroke. Once Mariann was well enough to return to the classes, Jim went with her.
Both Jim and Mariann graduated in Spring 2016 and had the exactly the same grade (an average of 77% for all their courses). Jim says he even got a job out the program. After their graduation was publicized, Jim received a call that eventually led to a new job—Pastor of the Albert Mines Baptist Church.
“Old Dog, New Tricks” was a classroom assignment by Jim Rae. See what he wrote below:
New Brunswick’s Fundy Coast region’s rugged coastal landscape is the ideal destination for Mountain Bike enthusiasts. Join in during the first weekend of October for 3 days of mountain-bike themed events for riders of all ability levels – and while you are here enjoy the dramatic colours of fall in Fundy Coast region!
Parks Canada has partnered with Outdoor Elements, IMBA and the Elgin Eco-Association for a weekend of fun. Activities include a mountain bike marathon, being able to demo "fat bikes", group rides, "take a kid mountain-biking day" and a trail building workshop.
For full information, see here
It’s a long walk from our house to the nearest grocery store. It’s even longer for my preschooler’s wee little legs. Plus, I’m pregnant.
My spouse has to drive all over Canada for his job and can be gone for up to a month at a time, so when our second vehicle broke down without notice, things were grim. If he takes time off, there’s no extra cash to fix the car situation, and without him we’re walking.
In rural Albert County, we are fortunate to be able to access the services of the Albert County Health and Wellness Centre. The Health Centre provides primary health care and promotes healthy lifestyles within the communities of Hillsborough, Riverside-Albert, Alma and the surrounding areas. The Health and Wellness Team of physicians, nurse practitioner, outreach diabetes case manager, nurses, dietitian and physiotherapist care about your health and are there to support you.
“I like books!” says Owen, piling his favourite books on his bed. The three--year-old eagerly shows me his library.
His mother, Robin Stuart, fills in the back story. Owen is enrolled in the Imagination Library. From birth until their fifth birthdays, children receive a book in the mail each month.
“A friend of mine told me about the Imagination Library,” says Robin. “She told me you can get a free book each month. It sounded amazing. And it is!”
The inspiration and force behind the program is Country-and-Western singer Dolly Parton. She wants to help children “fall in love with books at an early age,” according to her website. The long-term goal is greater literacy.
The Imagination Library costs $60 per child per year but the families don’t foot the bill. Thanks to the Bennett and Albert County Health Care (BACH) Foundation, families in rural Albert County of all income levels have been able to use the free program since 2010.
Like many rural schools, Caledonia Regional High School (CHRS) had few entertainment options during noon hour. Besides the school library or sports activities in the gym, there was little for students to do. Out of boredom, many of the older students left the school grounds and congregated at local businesses. And this was linked to another problem.
“When kids hang out with no purpose, smoking becomes the cool thing to do,” says teacher Benjamin Kelly, who knows that a lack of stimulating activities can lead teenagers to make unhealthy choices. The evidence was in the school’s high smoking rates among students.
There’s been a lot of excitement on the “hill” the past few months, and we are excited to share it with the community! Caledonia Activity Place has been working on revamping our activity program and we are ready to invite all of you to participate!
A lot is happening at the centre at the top of Hopewell Hill! Drop in to the Caledonia Activity Centre, 5295 Rte 114, Hopewell Hill. Click 'Read More' or scroll below to learn about the events happening on weekdays throughout the month. Call 882-2604 for details.
Alma Winter Carnival is coming!
Join the fun from January 29 - 31, 2016, at the Alma Recreation Centre “the Rink." Click 'Read More' to learn more or visit the Alma Recreation Centre's Facebook page.
By Deborah Carr
When Serge Levesque first moved to Hillsborough, he found the people to be warm and compassionate, but he didn't understand the full extent until he was diagnosed with cancer in June 2014.
"We needed to find a solution to our transportation problem quickly because I wasn't allowed to drive during my chemo treatments or the periods of crippling fatigue that came with them," he said. His wife, Martine, did not drive. An they had no family in the province.
While in a doctor’s office, Martine picked up a pamphlet describing a new Albert County service called Tele-Drive.
“My favourite moment in Roots of Empathy was when you smiled at me.”
“My favourite moment was when you held my finger.”
“Dear Baby Andie, my wish for you when you are in Grade 3, is that you will have a Roots of Empathy baby just like you.”
As the fifth Roots of Empathy program at Riverside Consolidated School wrapped up, students reflected on what they had experienced since October with baby Andie Ada Sanford, daughter of Alicia (O’Hara) and Jon Sanford. Baby Andie was just six weeks old when she made her first visit to the school. As the children greeted her with the special Hello Song, she seemed unperturbed by it all. As they touched the butterfly sock she wore, they hoped for eye contact with the special visitor, but to no avail. A tiny newborn, she was able to lie on the special Green Blanket, and make sounds. The list the students had created, of what they thought she might be able to do, contained mostly “not yet” comments rather than a “yes” – sitting up – not yet, walking – not yet.
But by June – what a change in our baby – sitting up, crawling, making eye contact, holding fingers, interacting with vocalizations, smiling, laughing, eating a wide variety of foods! The students and even Mom Alicia were amazed as they watched the slide show of photos from October to May. How much change occurs in a human during the first year of life!
Roots of Empathy was developed by Newfoundland educator, Mary Gordon. It has spread internationally, and is widely acclaimed.
“Roots of Empathy is an evidence-based classroom program that has shown significant effect in reducing levels of aggression among school children while raising social/emotional competence and increasing empathy.”
Roots of Empathy’s goals are:
· To foster the development of empathy
· To develop emotional literacy
· To reduce levels of bullying, aggression and violence, and promote children's pro-social behaviours
· To increase knowledge of human development, learning, and infant safety
· To prepare students for responsible citizenship and responsive parenting
Anglo East School District began Roots of Empathy in seven Grade 3 classrooms in the 2008-2009 school year. A facilitator must be trained by the national organization, and each program is supplied with curriculum materials, a special library and “props” – baby toys, a green blanket, a roll, and special T-shirts for babies that say “Roots of Empathy Teacher.”
Riverside Consolidated School has participated since the beginning, with a break from 2011-13. Five sweet baby girls have served as the Roots of Empathy “teacher” – showing the students how much babies learn in their first year. The facilitator is Barb Gebuhr, and the classroom teacher is Scott Tingley, providing continuity for the program.
The students soon adopt this baby as their own, and would never imagine harming her in any way; they empathize with her feelings, and transfer that empathy to their peer group, when reminded. They learn about normal infant development, and what is essential both prenatally, and during the first year, to ensure healthy and happy babies. A key message is “Never Shake a Baby” and students brainstorm ways that tired parents can deal with the frustration of a crying baby, rather than resort to shaking, which can cause brain damage, and even death. Students are very serious in absorbing these essential learnings, and plan to be great parents when the time comes!
For more information on the program, visit www.rootsofempathy.org
Submitted by Barb Gebuhr, Facilitator of Roots of Empathy program at Riverside Consolidated School.
by Deborah Carr
Moving as if to the sweep of a conductor's baton, they flow off the beach like a tide of liquid mercury, then swoop into the air, a dark ribbon smudge against the August sky. As if on prearranged cue, they bank as one and the flock metamorphoses, revealing the flashing white of ten thousand underbellies caught in the glory of the setting sun. A dance of precision and grace.
Mesmerized, I float motionless in my kayak. Like a mirage, the flock turns toward me, skimming the glassy surface of the bay. As their sheer numbers wash over me, I feel the brush of wings on my upturned cheek….but perhaps it is only the breath of their passing.
Then, just as suddenly, they are gone…and I am adrift alone.
Did you know that Albert County is going to play a part in this upcoming Festival? The orienteering events in Albert County are part of the 2015 Canadian Orienteering Championships. There will be events in all 3 Maritime Provinces and on August 16 and 17, events are planned in the White Rock Recreation area in Hillsborough and the Hopewell Rocks. More than 250 people are expected from North America, Europe and Australia.
What is orienteering? It is a sport that involves finding your way around the countryside using a map and compass to navigate and visit control point locations marked on the map. No GPS allowed! Think of it as a car rally on foot. The person who finds all the control points in the shortest time wins.
The Canadian Mental Health Association of New Brunswick (CMHA of NB) has been in our province for 65 years this November and is now back in rural Albert County.. CMHA of NB has amalgamated to become one loud and strong voice for New Brunswickers on their journey to wellness.
We understand and support you in your efforts of wellness. We know how important it is today to be as mentally and physically fit as we can be. Nowhere is the relationship between mental and physical health more evident than in the area of chronic conditions. The associations between mental and physical health include:
· Poor mental health is a risk factor for chronic physical conditions.
· People with serious mental health conditions are at high risk of experiencing chronic physical conditions.
· People with chronic physical conditions are at risk of developing poor mental health.
Some of the children who come call this ‘train school’, but nobody here knows how to operate a locomotive – even if there are a few of them around. And it’s not a ‘school’ in the proper sense of the word, but there is a lot of learning going on.
No, what the kids are referring to is actually the “Literacy Express” program for preschoolers which is held Tuesday and Wednesday mornings in the second floor rooms of the train station building adjacent to the Hillsborough Public Library. It is a free program for children ages 3 and 4 years old, sponsored by the Hillsborough Public Library Board.
Connecting Albert County encourages the pursuit of healthier lifestyle choices and outdoor recreation. We live in a beautiful region that offers year-round opportunities to get healthy while appreciating nature.
To encourage healthy living, we announce workshops on health and wellness, opportunities to join recreation groups or fitness classes, and wellness programs hosted by the Albert County Health & Wellness Centre.
We describe favourite hiking, skiing and snowshoeing trails in our newsletter and encourage residents to post stories and images of healthy activities in Albert County.
To learn more about our health services, visit the Albert County Health & Wellness Centre in Riverside-Albert and the Bennett and Albert County Health Care Foundation.
To learn about hiking, canoeing and kayaking trails, visit the Fundy Biosphere’s Amazing Spaces and Fundy National Park.
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