Holidays provide an chance to reflect

At home, like many of you, probably, we are trying to teach our children what this season is really all about.

  • Dec. 10, 2011 1:00 p.m.

By Hannah King

At home, like many of you, probably, we are trying to teach our children what this season is really all about.

We’re trying to encourage the girls to think about what they are grateful for.

In preparing for these discussions, I’ve come to realize this past year was full of challenges and trends both globally and locally that scare me silly.

Fortunately through my work I get to hear about a lot of the good things we are accomplishing as a community.

In this past year, four neighbourhood parks were rejuvenated or created thanks to the efforts of neighbourhood groups.

This might not seem like a huge number, but it represents a great deal of effort and commitment from those involved.

The resulting product and sense of community is always impressive.

This summer participants in our Leaders in Training and Quest youth leadership programs provided Nanaimo with 12,307 volunteer hours.

You would have seen them at community events and assisting in children’s programs and summer camps.

Participants typically go on to use the various skills they developed in the program. Once fostered in a positive way a person’s community spirit tends to flourish.

December marks the end of the current Parks, Recreation and Culture Commission’s three-year term. This group is responsible for a number of improvements locally.

They attended more than 70 public events, recognized and awarded 268 sport and cultural achievements, and ensured public recreation facilities meet the needs of the clients who visit pools, rinks or gymnasiums.

They’ve also supported plans to ensure these facilities will serve the community well into the future.

Isn’t that the true meaning of community? People helping people find the joy in life through providing settings to enjoy our natural surroundings, programs to learn a new skill or an event to gather and meet your neighbours?

I think those are all things to be grateful for.

From all of us at parks, recreation and culture, please enjoy the holidays and the time it affords you to focus on what matters.

Hannah King is a marketing and communication specialist with Nanaimo parks, recreation and culture.