Friday, April 27, 2012

Cheaper By The Dozen at Fergus Grand Theatre

FERGUS Wellington County Ontario - April 27, 2012 - Having just won four awards and 10 nominations at the Western Ontario Drama League Festival in Sarnia, Elora Community Theatre is presenting its new show, Cheaper By The Dozen.

Featuring local actors, the play tells the classic tale of the large, loving but tumultuous Gilbreth family and looks at the unusual life of a large family during the 1920's when Father decides to apply his "industrial efficiency" methods to his home and children...resulting in much embarrassment and hilarity.

A 1920's family classic that is adapted by Christopher Sergel from the book by Ernestine G. Carey.

This family comedy guarantees to lighten up May with a bucket of laughs. Directed by Denise Gismondi, this production will be Elora Community Theatre's final show of the 2011-12 season of three productions.

Cheaper By The Dozen will play at the Fergus Grand Theatre May 4 to 6 and 10 to 12, with evening performances at 8pm and Sunday shows at 2pm. For tickets visit or call 519-787-1981.

For information visit

from the Wellington Advertiser April 27, 2012

Today is Canadian Cancer Society's Daffodil Day

Wear a Daffodil Pin to Show Support for People with Cancer

TORONTO, April 27, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Today Sharon Ruth will be proudly wearing a daffodil pin to support her daughter Colleen, a cancer survivor. In 2003, six-year-old Colleen was diagnosed with leukemia, but now she is an active, healthy 15-year-old who says, "cancer motivated me to make the best of my life."

Sharon is thankful that her daughter is doing well, and she is taking special time on the Canadian Cancer Society's Daffodil Day to reflect on her daughter's cancer journey, celebrate her survival and think of others who are living with cancer.

In May 2003, when Sharon and her husband, Daniel, took Colleen to the hospital because she had a rash, the last thing on their mind was cancer. After receiving their daughter's diagnosis, Sharon and Daniel did their best to maintain their hope throughout Colleen's three-year cancer journey. For Sharon, Colleen's diagnosis was especially difficult because both her mom and dad had died of cancer, and her sister had died of the disease only six months earlier. "I was devastated when I heard Colleen had cancer," says Sharon.

Thinking back on it now, Colleen says that her parents' positive attitude helped her during her illness. At the time, it was hard for Colleen to understand what was happening to her and why she had to spend more than 200 days in hospital for treatment that included numerous blood transfusions and needles. From her perspective she was being taken away from her friends, family and school.

When Colleen turned nine, she went into remission and today she is attending high school and helping raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society. In September last year she and her mother participated in the Society's Relay For Life in Kemptville, Ontario.

Financial difficulties

Sharon recalls the ups and downs during Colleen's cancer treatment and remembers all too well the financial difficulties her family faced during this time.

Colleen's treatment would take two years, but the federal government's compassionate care program provided benefits for only six weeks. Sharon's workplace allowed her to take a year of compassionate leave, but without pay. Sharon eventually took a short stress leave from work, but when she returned to work, her husband left his job to care for Colleen.

"Daniel eventually got a part-time job driving a school bus to helps make ends meet," recalls Sharon. "He didn't go back to full-time work until Colleen was in remission and back in school. It was a very difficult time."

"This family's experience underscores why the Society is working hard to improve financial support for family caregivers," says Dan Demers, Director, Public Issues, Canadian Cancer Society. "In Canada, some support exists, but much more needs to be done so people don't have to face the difficulties that Sharon and her family experienced."

Improving family caregiver support

The Society's advocacy leadership led to the announcement of a new family caregiver tax credit in the June 2011 federal government budget. While the organization says this is a good first step, it will continue to advocate for better financial support for family caregivers through improvements to the Compassionate Care Benefits, which are administered by the federal employment insurance program. These improvements include:

...Timeframe for financial benefits: Increase the benefit period from the current six weeks to 26 weeks, accessible during a 52-week period.

...More flexibility: Allow people to claim benefits for partial weeks taken over a longer period, rather than blocks of weeks at a time.

...Revise eligibility criteria: Change the terminology for people eligible for benefits from "significant risk of death" to "significant need of caregiving due to a life threatening illness."

Ignited by her first-hand experience, Sharon is now a passionate advocate for more support for caregivers, especially in increasing benefits for parents with sick children. She presented her views to a parliamentary committee on palliative and compassionate care, tells her story to media when she can, and wrote a book about her daughter's journey called The Guinea Kid.

On Daffodil Day, Sharon's message to caregivers is that they are not alone. "I know what they are going through, and I will be thinking of them as I continue my work to ensure caregivers get the support they need and deserve."

Daffodil Day helps wrap up the Society's campaign by designating a special day where Canadians can take a moment to reflect upon the thousands of people who are on a cancer journey and also to remember those who have died.

Peter Goodhand, CEO and President of the Canadian Cancer Society, says that wearing a daffodil pin on this special day provides a visible symbol of support for all cancer survivors. "United by the daffodil, we are showing people with cancer that no one has to face cancer alone and we won't give up until all forms of the disease are defeated."

To find out where you can get a daffodil pin go to or contact your local Society office. The pins are also available at participating locations of Curves, First Choice Haircutters, Laura Canada, JACOB, LifeLabs, MAC's, Pacrim Hospitality Services hotels, Pharmasave and WirelessWave/Tbooth. Although the pin is not being sold for a set price, the Society encourages Canadians to make a donation to help support its mission work across Canada.

By supporting the Canadian Cancer Society during Daffodil Month and on Daffodil Day, Canadians will be joining a team that works hard to fight cancer in Canada. Your donation will help the Society:

...prevent cancer research to outsmart cancer

...empower, inform and support Canadians living with cancer

...advocate for public policies to improve the health of Canadians

The Canadian Cancer Society fights cancer by doing everything we can to prevent cancer, save lives and support people living with cancer. Join the fight! Go to to find out how you can help. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website at or call our toll-free bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Ontario Nurses' Association Officials in Guelph: President, Vice-President Meet with RNs for early Nursing Week celebrations

GUELPH, Ontario, April 22, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) President Linda Haslam-Stroud, RN will join registered nurses and Region 4 Vice-President Dianne Leclair in Guelph tomorrow for an early celebration of Nursing Week 2012.

The officials will make a series of site visits to ONA Local 15 members in their workplaces, including the Wellington Duffern Guelph Public Health Unit and Groves Memorial Hospital.

Nursing Week is held each year in Canada to celebrate the unique contributions that nurses make to the health care system. ONA has chosen the theme "Value the Invaluable" and will celebrate our hometown heroes - nurses - during the week of May 6 to 12.

Haslam-Stroud notes that even as budget pressures and workloads continue to mount for health care professionals, RNs remain - dollar for dollar - the best value in health care.

Ontario Nurses Association is the union representing 59,000 registered nurses and allied health professionals as well as more than 13,000 nursing student affiliates providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.


Visits to the Region of Waterloo Public Health Unit, Stirling Heights Long-Term Care, Forest Heights Long-Term Care, Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health Unit, Groves Memorial Hospital, North Wellington Health Care, and Groves Memorial Hospital.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Crossroads Christian Communications Celebrates its 50th Anniversary

Events, media productions, and the Crossroads Tours
for all to enjoy this special year

BURLINGTON, Ontario, April 5, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Crossroads Christian Communications marks its 50th Anniversary on June 2nd, 2012 and invites the public to participate in many of the special events happening at the Crossroads Centre during this significant year.

Crossroads has a strong legacy and on-going commitment to care for people, and impact culture through media, emergency response and 24/7 care centre.

What started as Founder David Mainse's 15-minute program following the late night news in Pembroke, Ontario, has grown into a multi-faceted communications organization that brings God's message to people all over the world. Crossroads is a producer of faith and value media programs including 100 Huntley Street a daily live broadcast to millions of people, and is the longest running daily television show in Canada. Crossroads also interacts with its viewers via 24/7 prayer lines, and it has been a highly respected and effective not-for-profit aid agency for over 25 years.

As part of the 50th Anniversary, Crossroads has commissioned several other productions, most recently a series of special documentaries called Canada Heart and Soul: Featuring Amazing People, Places, and Events that have defined a Nation. These documentaries are scheduled to run on Crossroads Television System (CTS) throughout the summer until the end of the year.

Between May 19th and September 3rd, Crossroads will be inviting its viewers to 50th Anniversary Tours of the Crossroads Centre in Burlington to include the exciting addition of a full-sized replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle and its broadcast studios! Those able to visit the Crossroads Centre in Burlington, Ontario, may also take in various events, feature talks and concerts by Christian authors and musicians and are open to the public. Tickets will be available beginning April 10th on the Crossroads 50th website: .

Also coming May 28th is Founder's Week on 100 Huntley Street, a special week of programming with Crossroads beloved Founder David Mainse as host.

For a list of events, special photos, and information regarding the Crossroads 50th Anniversary Tours, visit the website . The website will be consistently updated to reflect new information about the 50th Anniversary celebrations.

About Crossroads Christian Communications (Crossroads)

Crossroads is Canada's leader in providing faith and values media content for people of all ages. 100 Huntley Street, the flagship television program of Crossroads was founded by Rev. David Mainse and is the longest running daily Christian television program in Canada. Crossroads provides relevant messages of faith and inspiration for millions of Canadians and has done so for 50 years. Its mission is to convey the unchanging message of God's love to people around the world. Crossroads interacts with its viewers via 24/7 prayer lines, and it has also been a highly respected and effective not-for-profit aid agency for over 25 years, having responded in times of natural disaster worldwide, raising funds and partnering with on-site, non-government organizations for emergency relief and long-term rebuilding strategies.

Katimavik sets the facts straight

Government of Canada reneges on its word and abandons communities and youth across Canada

MONTREAL, April 5, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Government of Canada and Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore abandoned Katimavik communities and Canadian youth wanting to volunteer with Katimavik to misinformation in its 2012 Budget last Thursday. The Government also repudiated its own three-year funding commitment to the program, which was designed to put Katimavik on a path towards funding diversification.

"This decision affects more than just the young Canadians who complete our programs," said Katimavik CEO Daniel Lapointe, "More than 50 communities we work in across Canada will no longer be able to count on Katimavik volunteers and some not-for-profits may be forced to shut down while the others will need to reduce service without this vital volunteer support. It is truly a sad day for Canada and the values we espouse of civic engagement and support for those in need."

The cohort that is currently in the field will be the last one sponsored by the Federal Government, pulling the rug from under the nearly 600 incoming volunteers who were expecting to begin their 6-month program in July 2012. These dedicated and committed young Canadians have been given little notice, and will find it difficult to find alternative schooling or job opportunities.

"We are requesting an urgent meeting with Minister Moore to discuss how we can fulfill the commitment made to the nearly 600 young Canadians now placed in limbo," said Daniel Lapointe. "We also want to discuss how we can alleviate any of the Minister's concerns to find a common solution to restore funding for Katimavik's mission."

Katimavik: The Facts

The Government suggested in its Budget that the Katimavik program concentrated funding on a very small number of participants at an excessive per-person cost. This is contradicted in the most recent summative evaluation drafted by an independent third party on behalf of Canadian Heritage staff. Senior federal officials concluded that Katimavik is relevant, valuable and important, and is consistent with government-wide priorities and strategic objectives.

The facts are that Katimavik is a non-partisan program that not only provides Canadian taxpayers with an excellent return on investment, but that it is also entirely consistent with the principles of self-reliance and volunteerism that all parties in Parliament share.

Katimavik delivers national programs that are universally accessible to Canadian youth between 17-21 from all walks of life, from all social backgrounds and from all over Canada. Our retention rate of 85% is excellent, contrary to what a recent article cites Minister Moore claiming. First year university retention rates are only 70%.

The value of the volunteer work performed by the more than 1000 volunteers each year is estimated to be worth nearly $12 million per year. The ratio of administrative costs in Katimavik is 12%, which means that 88% of its budget goes directly to projects.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Habitat for Humanity affiliates across Canada to collect 690 million pennies to help build 69 more homes this year

TORONTO, April 2, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Habitat for Humanity is collecting pennies from across Canada to fund the building of 69 more Habitat homes this year, one home for each of its local affiliates. This announcement comes days after the Federal Government's decision to discontinue production of the one-cent piece, and its suggestion that citizens donate their extra coins to charity.

Each of the 69 regional Habitat affiliates across Canada is attempting to collect ten million pennies, equaling $100,000, or the average cost of the materials needed to build one safe, decent and affordable Habitat home. The ultimate goal of the campaign is to collect a total of 690 million pennies in order to help each of Habitat's Canadian affiliates give the hand up of homeownership to one more low-income family.

"We are very excited to kick-off this nationwide campaign," said Stewart Hardacre, President & CEO of Habitat for Humanity Canada. "Through the simple donation of spare pennies, more low-income Canadians will gain access to homeownership that is affordable, igniting a transformation within families that will last for generations to come."

As part of this national initiative, Habitat for Humanity affiliate offices and ReStores, building supply and home decor stores run by local Habitat affiliates, will be accepting penny donations. Visit to find the affiliate office or ReStore nearest you. Contact Habitat in your community to confirm hours of operation and drop off times.

In Canada, Habitat has given the hand up of affordable homeownership to over 2,000 families since 1985. Habitat homes are sold to low-income families through interest-free mortgages with no down payment required, allowing families to break the cycle of poverty.

About Local Affiliate Offices:

Habitat for Humanity Canada's mission is carried out by 69 affiliates in ten provinces and two territories. These affiliates select partner families for homeownership, provide them with support, manage the building of Habitat homes, and work closely with volunteers and partners at the community level. Affiliates also coordinate events and activities designed to raise funds for the cause and awareness of the need for affordable housing.

About Habitat for Humanity Canada:

Founded in 1985, Habitat for Humanity Canada is a national, non-profit organization working for a world where everyone has a safe and decent place to live. With the help of over 50,000 volunteers every year and 69 affiliated organizations from coast to coast, their mission is to break the cycle of poverty through affordable housing and the promotion of homeownership. Visit to learn more.

Monday, April 2, 2012 disrupts retail landscape with Canada's first-ever virtual store

Commuters browse Canada's first virtual store in downtown Toronto. (CNW Group/

Innovative product displays enable consumers to make purchases with their smartphones in Downtown Toronto

TORONTO, April 2, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - is bringing the first QR-code virtual store in North America to downtown Toronto. Running from April 2 to 30, this exciting shopping experience allows users to skip the line ups and have their favourite health, baby and beauty products delivered to their homes.

" is excited to bring the future of shopping to Canada. At our mission is to break down barriers to online shopping. We've mashed together our love of smartphones, the convenience of e-commerce and free shipping to do something no other retailer delivers," said Ali Asaria, founder and CEO of

"Our website and this virtual store are perfect options for busy consumers who don't have time to wait in line for a box of diapers or a tube of toothpaste."

To participate in the virtual shopping experience, consumers begin by downloading the app, available for iPhone, Android, Blackberry or Windows Phone. Once installed, consumers can visit the virtual store - a visual representation of the store shelves they are used to - scan the product QR codes and check out on their phone. The process is simple and hassle-free and includes free delivery across Canada.

"We applaud for this innovation that brings a new way to serve consumers where they live and work" says Gord Meyer, Marketing Director, Procter & Gamble Canada "Partnering with is a perfect match to our desire to have our brands at the forefront of the fast paced and ever-changing environment of consumer digital experience."

The virtual store will feature well known brands such as Tide, Crest, Head and Shoulders and Pampers. Those who are unable to visit the virtual store will be able to access the offers throughout the month of April at


Lower Level Brookfield Place - Corner of Front and Bay Streets in Toronto

From the 181 Bay St. entrance, proceed down the escalators and toward Union Station.

The Virtual store is located just outside the Union Station TTC Subway stop.

Parking is available in Brookfield Place's underground parking facilities.

About is the largest health, baby and beauty e-commerce retailer in Canada with offices in Guelph, Toronto and Waterloo. Founded in 2008 by Ali Asaria, carries more than 50,000 health, beauty, personal care and household products and offers free shipping to almost all Canadians. focuses on giving customers a simple and hassle-free shopping experience and provides a personalized touch to each package shipped. was recognized by Deloitte as one of the Technology Fast 50 Companies to Watch and Ali Asaria was a finalist in Ernst and Young's 2011 Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards.