Our speaker, Jennifer Yankanna is the Manager of Community Giving for the CNIB. She gave an overview of the extensive services and advocacy CNIB provides for blind or partially sited clients, both adults and children. Ninety percent of their funding comes from the community either from donations or foundation giving.The majority of their clients have macular degeneration. Upon referral from an eye care specialist, they provide life skills training in -home and at CNIB offices. They can offer low vision aids that can enlarge and expand peripheral vision as well as mobility and safe and effective daily living devices. Devices are available for sale or loan. Their loan library is extensive and includes the Daisy Payers (book readers) donated by our Rotary club for loan to those who may not afford them.
But, paradoxically, he agreed that his membership recognized the need for infrastructure improvements, the projected growth in population and business obviously mandating major transportation innovation. It would seem, however, that the No side is of the view that Translink is sitting on a pile of money and that it should simply be abolished or recast (what is legislated into existence can of course be equally easily legislated into history) and the transportation problem would be resolved by, presumably, appropriate use of the resulting flood of funds. As a solution to a set of problems that few deny, this doesn't sound much like a plan, a flaw that members' questioning immediately limned. All know that there is no Plan B, so one is forced to the conclusion - at least on the basis of this presentation - that a No vote is simply a recipe for inaction.
The Metro Vancouver area is expected to greet about 1 million new residents over the next 30 years, and even superficial observation of the rush-hour crawl, the pressure on house prices, the decrepit state of some bridges and the common complaints about full busses amply demonstrates the need for constructive solutions to the problems of an expanding society. Patently, no level of government likes to announce an increase in taxes, and nor do any levels appreciate the obvious mis-steps of Translink nor take responsibility for what appear to be extremely costly management errors.
The solutions to the problems are not easy, but the Mayor had no trouble admitting to the meeting the fact that perceptions had mostly gone against the manifest need for new light rapid transit, a Broadway subway, a new NightBus service and as many as 400 new transit vehicles. The fact also has to faced that the rejection of the referendum proposals will mean stagnation, inefficiency, and the throttling of much progressive development of the whole of Greater Vancouver. Plan B does not exist : but there is still time, one hopes, for good sense to prevail over the myopic views of nay-sayers. It was encouraging that the audience so actively participated in this important discussion.
Our contribution of $4,800 will bring 720 children from inner-city schools to explore and study in the most beautiful outdoor classroom in Vancouver during the 2015/2016 school year. (45 children per bus). Since 2002, with the support of various donors, a bursary was established to subsidize educational programming for inner-city children throughout the lower mainland. Support of this program would help provide educational programming for inner-city kids throughout the lower mainland by providing bus transportation to and from VanDusen Gardens for field trips.
This personalized medicine will allow (of course, only in those societies that can afford it) far more effective preventive care than at present and greatly refine the healthcare system. Of course, to a degree it provides for very early determination of one’s life, particularly the pattern of healthcare, and as such has profound economic and philosophical implications for society in general. The uniqueness of each individual’s profile being the key to patient treatment, the accuracy of the individual’s unique molecular makeup should transform the personalized health care system.
Frankly, a challenging talk : chromosome therapy should denote the end of many of mankind’s greatest scourges.
Monika is the school principal, and after an expression of thanks to the Club, she introduced Tyson, the architect and engineer of the ‘course’. He, obviously an enthusiastic and motivated teacher, described how the LAP for grades 3 to 11 actually operates and utilizes the funds that are received. He has generally been involved in these activities for 17 years and part of his dedication is shown by his regime of arising at 4am to prepare individual instruction for each pupil, the target being the obverse of the usual technique of only getting into action on the ‘wait to fail’ basis : this, as he said, is entirely the wrong way around for providing such assistance. Virtually all of his pupils go on to graduate, a target which initially many would not believe to be possible. These are often students whom he characterized as ‘angry and frustrated’, in part because of a complete inability to read by the time they reach grade 4. They are not, he emphasized, of low intelligence, it being a blockage of some sort that is holding back the learning process. It is his job to break that intellectual logjam, which is why his skills are so individualized.
We were shown two brief films that his students created and in which they appeared. The first, entitled “Welcome to Thrive” was a moving demonstration of practical biodiversity, and indeed of practical film-making : an opportunity to observe a wise-looking barn owl was grasped when it unexpectedly appeared outside the school. It presented a powerful image. The second film was in reality a thanks for the Club’s having provided so much assistance. We were shown some examples of demonstrative mathematics teaching, an example of assistance that could not have been effected without the help of Rotary.
The world’s learning problems are, it would seem, profound. Of all children, Tyson said, 20% are illiterate, and of the balance, 20% are functionally illiterate. These are sobering thoughts.