Kitchener–Conestoga Green Party AGM, 15 March 2018

Meeting
Meeting!
Hello Kitchener–Conestoga Green Party members, supporters and friends!

There’s a provincial election coming in June, and the Kitchener–Conestoga Greens are starting to gear up.

Along with the other Waterloo Region Green Party riding associations, we’re having an election planning meeting this Thursday:

What: Election planning meeting
When: Thursday, 15 February 2018, 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Where: Re/Max Office
Location: 720 Westmount Rd East, Kitchener Map

Everyone is welcome to come, not only Green Party members. Bring a friend, and meet the candidates for Waterloo, Zdravko Gunjevic, and Kitchener Centre, Stacey Danckert. We’ll talk about campaign strategies for Waterloo Region, and the Green Party of Ontario’s priorities

If you’re hearing about this for the first time, my apologies for the short notice. We’re just getting started with mailouts for KitCon Green Party members, so future events will get much more advance notice.

Speaking of future events:

The Kitchener–Conestoga provincial Consituents Association and the Kitchener–Conestoga federal Electoral District Association will be having their Annual General Meeting in four weeks:

What: AGM for Kitchener–Conestoga Green Party CA and EDA
When: Thursday, 15 March 2018 from 7:00pm to 8:00pm
Where: Kennedy’s Restaurant
Location: 1750 Erb’s Road, St. Agatha, Ontario Map

We’ll elect new executive for the upcoming year. Positions to be filled are:

  • EDA Chief Executive Officer (currently Bob Jonkman)
  • EDA Financial Agent (currenty Laurel Russwurm)
  • CA President (currenty Bob Jonkman)
  • CA Chief Financial Officer (currently Laurel Russwurm)
  • Up to three Principal Officers (currently Marie Bridel, David Weber, Wiyanna Green)

The AGM is at 7:00pm, but please join us for dinner at 6:00pm, and feel free to stay and chat about politics over a beverage until closing. Have a look at Kennedy’s menu!

Everyone is welcome to attend the AGM, but only paid-up members can vote or run for the Executive. Lapsed members can renew their membership that night, but new members need to submit their membership payment by 1 March 2018.

The AGM also marks the closing day for candidate nominations for the Provincial Election. If you’d like to run, please contact Maureen Balsillie, Organizer for the Green Party of Ontario at maureenbalsillie@gpo.ca or +1–519–400–1437

The Kitchener–Conestoga Nomination Contest will be held in early April to select our candidate for the June provincial election.

Hope to see you at a Green Party event soon!

–Bob Jonkman

President,
Kitchener–Conestoga Green Party of Ontario
Constituents Association

bob.jonkman@greenparty.ca

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Farewell to Michael Purves-Smith

It’s clear that Elmira resident Michael Purves-Smith was celebrated in the realm of academia as a professor, and in the realm of music as a conductor, composer, and performer. But the Michael Purves-Smith I knew was an engaged citizen concerned with democracy and local politics.

When the provincial Liberal Green Energy Act made a mockery of local planning in Elmira, Michael led the opposition to the Biogas plant against insurmountable odds. In my wildest imaginings I never expected to see the citizens of Elmira picketing Woolwich Township.

Michael’s passionate concern for the future of this planet led him to don Leadnow colours in hope of bringing real change to Canada. And his was a familiar face at environment events throughout the region like the “Beyond Crisis” screening at the Waterloo Princess Theatre last fall.

Michael sought to lead Canadians beyond lip service to effective climate action, going so far as to write his own novel to wake us up to the urgency of climate change.

Michael Purves-Smith at his “Rocky Mountain Locust” book launch

The environment event Michael was working on before his passing has been put in limbo; it would be a suitable memorial for his event partners to carry on with: Partnering with Nature To Heal The Biosphere

Michael and Shannon Purves-Smith at the 2016 Green Party Convention, Calgary

There simply aren’t enough people like Michael Purves-Smith in the world.  If we follow his example of dedication and hard work, together we can prevail, both for ourselves and our children’s future.

He will be missed.

Celebration of Life

A celebration of life memorial for Michael will be held on Sunday, February 11, 2018, at 7:00 p.m., at Knox Presbyterian Church, 50 Erb St. W., Waterloo.


Further reading:

Purves-Smith: ‘Gentle, beautiful’ (The Record)

Biography (Music centre)

Tribute (The Elora Festival)

A Tribute to Michael Purves-Smith (Wellington Wind Symphony)

Michael Purves-Smith speaks to CTV following the protest and Woolwich Council Meeting (2014)

 

Farewell to Trudy Beaulne

Trudy Beaulne
April 19th, 1954 — January 5th, 2018

Community activist Trudy Beaulne, passed away unexpectedly on Friday, January 5th, 2018.

Trudy was an inspiration to me, and many others.  She was so passionate about making the world a better place as the Executive Director of the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region.

I have no doubt our community will feel her loss for decades to come.  We will miss her dedication, wisdom and humanity; and her skill at building bridges so we can hear each other.  You can help Trudy’s important work carry on, attend their events, find out what they need, or volunteer at the Social Development Centre if you can.   My heart goes out to her family & friends.

Bob wrote about Trudy for KWPeace.

Fairvote’s Sharon Sommerville remembered Trudy as well.

Trudy’s strength and passion glows through her words and her eyes in a small video I recorded the first time I heard Trudy speak.  “Values for Change” is my own remembrance of Trudy.

Today we say goodbye.

— Laurel

Funeral

Visitation: 10:00am to 2:00pm, Friday 12 January 2018
Sharing Memories: 2:00pm, Friday 12 January 2018
Where: Henry Walser Funeral Home
Location: 507 Frederick Street, Kitchener Map
Phone: +1-519-749-8467

 

An Ontario Election is Coming

The 42nd Ontario general election will be held on or before June 7th, 2018.

The Kitchener—Conestoga Greens hope to turn this riding on its ear by electing a Green MPP in June.  If you’re reading this blog there is an excellent chance you are as interested in electing Greens as we are. Kitchener—Conestoga will host our AGM (Annual General Meeting) and Candidate Nominations early in 2018.  There will be an official mailout in January, but we’ll also post event details here.  Whether or not you’re a member, you’re always welcome at Green Party events. (You will need to be a member to vote for the Executive and candidate, however.)

Canadian and Ontario politics are badly in need of some new voices; it has become painfully clear that if we really want real change, we need to start voting for what we want, not who we think might be elected.

And we need your help!  Volunteers can make all the difference, and of course votes will always be appreciated.  In spite of the mainstream claims the 2008 recession is over, we are aware that although it may be true for the one percent, it isn’t for most people.  If you aren’t in a position to donate; please don’t.  Come out to our events or volunteer instead!

If you can afford to donate now (or in the future), something I did not realize before joining the party is that political donations come with tax breaks. I was shocked to learn three quarters of anything you donate up to $400 will be refunded when you do your taxes!  After that the rebates reduce in size, check the chart below for details.

Although we don’t normally solicit donations here, a an election coming, this is a great time to donate if you’re going to.   Especially if you want to donate to the max, if you get your donation in by December 31st, you can donate to the max again in 2018.

Kitchener—Conestoga isn’t set up to take online donations (yet) but you can donate directly to the Green Party of Ontario, your year-end donation of $5, $10, $25 or whatever you can afford will be most appreciated. Any donation you can make will help fund the preparations for our upcoming crucial election, mere months away!

Your Gift Tax Credit* Actual Cost
$5 $3.75 $1.25
$10 $7.50 $2.50
$25 $18.75 $6.25
$50 $37.50 $12.50
$100 $75 $25
$300 $225 $75
$400 $300 $100
$500 $350 $150
$750 $475 $275
$900 $550 $350
$1,200 $700 $500
*Based on your total tax credit for 2017

If your pre-New Year’s resolution is to make an end of year donation to the Green Party don’t delay!

And if there’s any cash in the kitty after making your GPO donation, you might want to consider a donation to the Green Party of Canada.GreenGearsThe Green Party is a grassroots party operating on a minimal budget; with your help we can run more robust campaigns. We need Green voices at the table for today and into the future.

100 years ago in Halifax

Today marks the centennial of the devastating Halifax Harbour explosion. A tragedy of epic proportions.

How it happened was senseless.

Something like 2,500 died. The explosion literally incinerated such a large area they couldn’t be certain. More than 9,000 wounded.

“This may be the only photograph of the remnants of blast itself reportedly taken 15-20 seconds after the explosion.

“Indications are that it was taken at Bedford Basin, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, from approximately a mile’s distance looking southeast.

“Photographer: unknown.

“Although the National Library and Archives Canada description estimates the distance from the explosion as 21 km/13 mi, the actual location and distance have never been firmly established.

“However, the height of the blast at its peak was measured at 3,600 metres (11,811 feet or 2.25 miles) on a sextant by Captain W. M. A. Campbell of the Canadian merchant ship, Acadian, approximately 28 km (18 mi) from the harbour approaches. This measurement is consistent with the time-frame of 15-20 seconds at a distance of 1 mile.

“Furthermore, documented photographic evidence from the Ron Fralick Collection (photo reference numbers: 16,274 & 16,275 – Maritime Museum of the Atlantic) clearly shows the size, shape and direction of the blast cloud as it passed by York Redoubt and indicates that the original photograph was probably taken from Bedford Basin.”

— Wikimedia Commons

But the day was also marked by one astounding act of self sacrifice ~ heroism ~ that saved the lives of hundreds more.

Halifax Aftermath
Halifax Aftermath [see a larger version of our restoration on Flickr]

Image Credits

Halifax Explosion blast cloud restored a public domain image photographed by an unknown photographer, via Wikimedia Commons

View looking south showing damage caused by the Halifax Explosion ~ public domain image from a rolled photographic print of a photograph taken by an unknown photographer via Library and Archives Canada