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  • January 21, 2009

E-newsletter January 21, 2009

1.Louis Braille 2.All Politicians Town Hall 3. Hottest issue in Don Valley West

Hi Everyone,

I know that in the last few days we have all been coping with the deep cold—the City has been working to provide shelter for the homeless and I thank anyone and everyone who is involved in or who supports that vital work. My thoughts and prayers go out to anyone without a warm space on these unforgivingly cold days and nights.

It was lovely to see so many of you at our Levee—next year we definitely will have a larger room! Thank you to all who were able to come for a great start to 2009!

Merci, Louis!

I wanted to share an experience with you, one of those events that you likely haven’t heard about and its heartwarming, positive nature didn’t make it particularly newsworthy. On Friday, I had the pleasure of attending a celebration at the headquarters of the CNIB (Canadian National Institute for the Blind) of the 200th anniversary of the birthday of Louis Braille. Braille, as you know, developed the system of six raised dots arranged as a written code for the blind that works in any language across the globe. The celebration of this 15-year-old’s accomplishment two centuries ago was lively and emotional. Many members of the blind community from across Canada joined together to celebrate the man whose genius allows them to read and write independently. The CNIB is a terrific organization with a legion of dedicated volunteers—Don Valley West happens to be home to the national headquarters and I am lucky to be included in many of their events in their totally accessible and beautiful building on Bayview Ave. If you’ve never had a chance to see the facility, it is truly world class and I encourage you to drop in.

The Louis Braille celebration was topped off by a moving rendition of a song written for the occasion by Terry Kelly. And of course, the song is entitled “Merci Louis”—a sentiment felt sincerely by everyone in the room!

All Politicians Town Hall

One of the frustrations for citizens and residents of any jurisdiction is that when they have a question for government, it is often difficult to determine exactly which level of government holds responsibility for answering their question. For that reason, every year since I was elected in 2003, I have invited politicians from all levels of government to join together in a town hall format to allow residents of Don Valley West to pose any and all questions to us collectively. Each year, there are questions that pertain to school board officials, city council officials, and provincial and federal representatives. We move the event around to different parts of the riding each year, but everyone is welcome! This year’s town hall is happening on Thursday of this week. Here’s the information:

Don Valley West Town Hall
Thursday, January 22, 2009
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
John Fisher Jr. Public School
40 Erskine Ave. (Yonge north of Eglinton)

Family Literacy Day

On January 27th, families from across Canada will celebrate Family Literacy Day. Founded by ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation, Family Literacy Day, promotes the importance of reading and learning together as a family.

Every year, literacy focused events take place across the country to celebrate this important day. ABC CANADA is also attempting to set a world record for “Most Children Reading With an Adult, Multiple Locations.” There are many events being organized across the country as part of this world record attempt.

This year, I am getting a jump start on Family Literacy Day by reading to children at the Locke Library. This event takes place on January 24th from 2:00 – 2:45 p.m. at the Locke Branch of the Toronto Public Library at 3083 Yonge Street, Toronto. Even if you are unable to attend, I encourage families to take the time to read together.

Warm regards to you all for this week when Hope surges into office with Barack Obama and the world takes heart!

All the best,

Keep in Mind...

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