Local First Nation receives funding

Plus, Canadian Championship, Christmas craft fair, emergency test, and more

Good morning, 

The Rick Hansen Foundation (RHF) announced the Ditidaht First Nation as one of two Indigenous communities that are recipients of the RHF B.C. Accessibility Grants Program. Making the announcement during Indigenous Disability Awareness month, the grant program is a step forward to reconciliation, and an important part of partnership and awareness. Read all about it, and more in today’s edition of the newsletter. 


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Rick Hansen Fund will support Ditidaht First Nation to improve accessibility and services

As part of Indigenous Disability Awareness Month, the Rick Hansen Foundation (RHF) announced the Ditidaht First Nation as one of two Indigenous communities that are recipients of the RHF B.C. Accessibility Grants Program. Malahat Nation and Ditidaht First Nation on Vancouver Island’s Westshore join Seabird Island Band as recipients of the program. Ditidaht territory reaches inland from Cowichan Lake, down through Nitinat Lake, and out to the coast between Bonilla Point and Pachena Point.

The eponymous Rick Hansen Foundation is named for the Canadian wheelchair athlete who undertook a 35-month, 40,000km global marathon to raise awareness and funds for people living with disabilities.

Formed by British Columbia Aboriginal Network on Disability Society (BCANDS) in 2015, Indigenous Disability Awareness Month (IDAM) is the only Indigenous disability specific awareness initiative of its kind in the world. IDAM recognizes the unique barriers that Indigenous people living with disabilities face, but also celebrates achievements and the significant contributions Indigenous people with disabilities make in their communities.

In his remarks about the announcement, Ditidaht Nation housing manager Chris Baker acknowledged that “Accessibility issues are often overlooked,” and said he thinks “this is the perfect opportunity to gain as much knowledge as possible to help improve accessibility in our community.”


Westshore Rebels fight hard battle against Saskatoon Hilltops

Westshore Rebels. Photo: Erich Eichorn / AllSports Media

Despite the undefeated streak the Westshore Rebels had going into the Canadian Junior Football Championship, the team found itself facing the formidable Saskatoon Hilltops for a difficult battle this Nov. 11, and lost the cup. 

The local junior football team had a successful season, winning the Cullen Cup final at home and beating the defending national champion Okanagan Sun. Going into the game with a record-streak of continuous wins throughout the regular season, the Rebels easily outscored teams in their conference, and were even on the brink of 100 points in one game.

Despite the west coast team’s position and strong record, the Hilltops were a difficult opponent, matching the Rebels with an undefeated year and keeping consistent at the top of their conference throughout. The Hilltops pushed the Rebels’ offence to work hard, only scoring 10 points and one touchdown at the first of the half of the game. Facing a number of penalties and game-changing turnovers, the Rebels started their game on a less-than-ideal beginning. With a hard-fought battle, the Hilltops scored a field-goal in the last quarter, securing their win and the championship. 

The loss does not discount the Rebels' work and effort throughout the year, having had the best season in the club’s history. Breaking numerous records and going into the final undefeated, the team hope to push for the title of Canadian champions in coming seasons. 

Rebels players have been proving their worth, sweeping the BC Football Conference awards; Westshore Rebels quarterback Te Jessie was named the offensive MVP (as well as offensive back) and linebacker Demar Hohnstein was defensive MVP (and best linebacker). Cairo Berry won returner of the year and best special teams player, Kieran Poissant was best receiver, and Dexter Janke was coach of the year.

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Around the 'Shore

⛴️ Sailor 1st Class Ryan Black shares experience on four-month deployment: CFB Esquimalt sailor Ryan Black was deployed in August on the HMCS Ottawa on a mission to the Indo-Pacific region. Sharing his experience on the ship, Black said his responsibilities allowed him to problem solve and give him variety in a number of different tasks. He is a fifth generation family member serving the country, and is proud to be carrying on the honour. [Vancouver Island Free Daily

🎨 artsREACH has introduced creative workshops on painting, dance, theatre, clay sculpting, and more to over 30,000 children in Victoria. Learn more about the in-school and after-school classes the organization offers.*

⚖️ View Royal mayor calls for audits of new provincial housing legislation: Feeling a lack of consultation with municipalities, View Royal Mayor Sid Tobias is asking the BC Auditor General for an audit of the new housing legislation. The town is frustrated with the new legislation introduced, which  requires municipalities to update zoning bylaws to permit multi-unit buildings on lots typically used for single-family detached homes without public hearings for the rezoning applications. [Times Colonist

🧠 New experiences can rewire the brain, helping to break unhelpful patterns and changing old ways of being in the world. Give yourself a new experience at Intertidal Counselling & Wellness.*

⚠️ BC warns public of scheduled emergency test: On Nov. 15, the province is warning citizens that a Canada-wide emergency alert will occur to test the National Public Alerting System next week. Although the province has its own system, this is a federally-conducted test to check the effectiveness of the Canadian system at around 1:55pm; residents will receive the warnings to all eligible phones, radios and televisions. [CHEK]

*Sponsored Listing

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Community Events

🌧️ Rainwater Harvesting: Hosted at the Sooke Library, rainwater harvesting installer Ken Nentwig will be showing a presentation about the benefits and process of rainwater harvesting. As a well-qualified and experienced installer, the presentation is a good opportunity to learn more about reusing water on Nov. 16 from 1:30-3pm. 

🧶 Cables and Cap Class: On Nov. 16, head to the Langford Station for another specialty knitting class. Focusing on the cable technique and hats, this is a class better suited for intermediate knitters; the event will go from 6:45-8pm, and all materials are provided. 

🎄 Christmas Craft Fair: Looking to start your holiday shopping early? The All Sooke Arts and Crafts Christmas Craft Fair is coming to town Nov. 17-19. Held at the Sooke Community Hall with a variety of craft vendors, and different times each day, this is a community staple free for anyone to enjoy. 

What’s Offshore?

🚢 The Shagang Haili is a bulk carrier built in 2011 and is sailing under the flag of Panama. It is sailing from Port Edward 🇨🇦 ➡ Roberts Bank 🇨🇦 and was scheduled to arrive Oct. 27.

⛴ The Christine Oldendorff is a bulk carrier built in 2010 and is sailing under the flag of Liberia. It is sailing from Jintang, China 🇨🇳 ➡ Vancouver 🇨🇦 and was scheduled to arrive Nov. 7.

🛳 The Ototachibana is a bulk carrier built in 2012 and is sailing under the flag of Japan. It is sailing from Himeji, Japan 🇯🇵 ➡ Vancouver 🇨🇦 and was scheduled to arrive Nov. 7.

Westshore Snaps

The rainbow from the Save-On parking lot on Nov 4, 2023. —Sue Raubenheimer, Langford

📸 Snapped a photo you’d like to share? Send it with a caption and don’t forget to add where you live.

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