Westshore volunteers prepare for relief trip to Ukraine
Plus, Cullen Cup winner, Halloween events, and more
Today is Halloween, and there is plenty to do in the Westshore to ring in the spooky holiday. Check out our full list of Halloween activities in the area.
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Westshore volunteers gear up for upcoming trip to Ukraine
A month ago, former Langford fire chief and humanitarian activist Bob Beckett along with retired RCMP staff sergeant Bruce Brown and CTV reporter Brendan Strain announced that they would be flying to Ukraine late this fall for the third deployment from this initiative to this war-torn country. Now, as the volunteers prepare to fly for their upcoming trip, Bob Beckett says the team is around $10,000 shy of their original $50,000 fundraising goal, something he is hopeful the team can meet.
“Every day we're getting money coming in and it doesn't matter whether it's a dollar on the GoFundMe, or in some cases we literally just the other day received two $2,000 donations,” says Beckett. “That's amazing, but that isn't common and we understand that, so if we can get $5-$10 on a number of those donations, we're optimistic that we're going to meet our goal.”
With an outpouring of community support, and recent global events that have rocked communities everywhere, Beckett says that this visit is more important than ever.
“[People] want to be able to feel like they're contributing, especially I think in this last week or so with the situation in Gaza and Israel, which is absolutely terrible,” says Beckett. “People feel anxious about what's happening, and they're frustrated that they're not able to help, when in fact they can and are.”
As a result of the team's original visit, the volunteer group has already made a large impact through their collaboration efforts. With a number of goals including medical relief through the delivery of 16 medical pallets, an education opportunity for four young kids, and so much more, Beckett says that any support is welcomed.
“The community of Greater Victoria just amazes us and inspires us to do more because we're blessed to live in a community with the generosity that we see,” says Beckett. “I think the situation in Ukraine really resonates with us because we have one of the largest populations of Ukrainian immigrants and displaced Ukrainians in Canada, and even in our Westshore we have accommodated a number of folks that have fled their country—we need to stop thinking that military intervention is going to solve our problems and we need to recognize and see the world as one global community and look for ways to find peaceful resolution.”
Hoping to continue initiatives like this in the future, Beckett and his team stress the importance of staying educated and aware of global issues. As the date of travel approaches, (which cannot be named due to safety reasons), the volunteer group is thankful to each person who takes the time to learn a little bit more about humanitarian work. The team also hopes to make a return trip in the spring.
“I really think it's important that we use this opportunity, and that's why we have such a big focus on our educational relationship with the school districts over there,” says Beckett. “We can bring that message back to our children here so our students recognize that we're not just playing for the Westshore or Greater Victoria, we are one community, we are one people.”
Westshore Rebels are BC’s football champions
Westshore Rebels. Photo: Erich Eichorn / AllSports Media
The local junior football team won at home on Saturday, knocking out the defending national champion Okanagan Sun. The Rebels remain undefeated (12-0) on the season after overcoming a first-half deficit to take the Cullen Cup 33-19.
It’s been a dominant season for the Rebels, who outscored opponents by a total of 583-112 in the regular season and verged on scoring 100 points in one game.
The team will next host the Canadian championship in two weeks, taking on the Saskatoon Hilltops at 3pm; tickets are on sale now.
Westshore players won most league awards
In the BC Football Conference, Westshore quarterback Te Jessie was the offensive MVP (as well as offensive back) while 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.
Rebels’ 2023 success began even before season
This spring, former Rebel Dontae Bull went #1 in the CFL draft.
VI Rebels had a polar opposite season
The Island’s other BCFC team went 0-10 while being outscored 132-587.
Around the 'Shore
🎃 Metchosin family hosts spooky event to give back to the community: Angella Campos and her family have celebrated Halloween with incredible displays over the past decade, but when they found out their son had crohn’s disease three years ago, they wanted to make an impact and give back to the BC Children’s Hospital who have helped them throughout the years. Hoping to raise over $5,000 this year, the family has created a haunted maze along with other fun activities for the public to enjoy. [CHEK]
🍁 Esquimalt woman shares the beauty of autumn: Sky Richarde, who was born in Kauai, is appreciating the Westshore’s beauty by taking photos of “leaf stamps.” Moving to a city with rain and changing trees has made her appreciate the differences between this and the hot climate she grew up in. Richarde takes photos of the dry patches left by leaves on the ground and hopes the community can appreciate the beauty of fall in Esquimalt. [CTV]
🚨 Oregon man sentenced to 20 years for child exploitation in the Westshore: Kevin Robert McCarty, 37, was sentenced to 20 years in US federal prison on Oct. 13 for using social media to stalk, coerce, and exploit three children into creating and sharing sexually explicit photos and videos of themselves. The investigation has been going on since May of 2021 when Comox Valley RCMP received reports of a youth in the area being exploited; the children involved are from the Comox Valley, the Westshore, and Surrey. [Vancouver Island Free Daily]
👻 Luxton Fairgrounds Haunted House: Join the community for the last day of Luxton Fairgrounds Haunted House on Oct. 31. With cash-only tickets available on-site ($10 for kids, $15 for adults), the event is open from 1-6pm for family fun, and 6:30-10pm for 16+ spooky activities. Make sure to check out this, and more on the Westshore’s list of Halloween events.
👟 Metchosin 10k walk: Looking to get out and active? Join this community 10k walk with the Victoria Pathfinders on Nov. 1, starting near 4475 Happy Valley Rd. With registration open at 8:45am, and the walk beginning at 9am, it is a great way to meet people in the area, get some fresh air, and enjoy the picturesque views of Metchosin; the group will get coffee afterwards.
🧶 Master Continental Knitting: Spinnacle Yarns is excited to host another knitting class this Nov. 2 at the Station. From 6:45-8pm, make sure to bring some yarn, needles, and your best attitude and learn two types of knitting and three variations of the purling method from expert knitters. Registration is open online.
🎭 Big Bluff Show: Comedy meets cabaret in Cabaret Sooke’s fundraiser event for the Sooke Gathering Place this Nov. 4. Going from 7:30pm to 1:30am, the event will have both a show and after party, both with live entertainment; make sure to wear your costume and purchase tickets online.
🚢 The Pan Hope 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. 23.
⛴ 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.
Thetis Lake trails. —Richard Steward, View Royal
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