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General News · 30th November 2016
Andy Vine
As a senior who likes to volunteer for this wonderful island community I canít help but notice how most of the people who are doing the same are also seniors. Itís a fairly frequent question that pops up; ďwhere are the younger generation when we need them?Ē After attending the amazingly successful benefit for Standing Rock at the Klahoose Hall, I think I now know the answer. It seems the younger generation on Cortes are more focused on global and major off-island issues than they are on whatís going on here. And I completely understand that. There is a ton of work to be done in the world. At the same time, I think itís important to take care of home too. And although the seniors who make up the bulk of the local volunteers are happy to do this work, they/we are not getting any younger and canít keep it up forever. So this is just to plant a few seeds in the minds of the next generation of Cortes community volunteers; it might be time to step up.
Andy Vine
one more thing...
Comment by Max Thaysen on 6th December 2016
This might be a good time to thank (and apologize to) the children of the future for paying for the 'spare time' that we have for volunteering. They will pay with austerity, scarcity and environmental collapse.
And thanks too to the wage slaves and robots and machines that work so hard under conditions of questionable consent, to aleviate us of much of our toil and trouble to make a life work - so that we may volunteer (and do other pleasant work).
I honestly mean this, for myself and all of us living now, in the first world.
I would add...
Comment by Max Thaysen on 6th December 2016
I didn't take Andy's comments as strongly judgemental...
Just wanted to add to our theories about the lack of volunteerism by younger folks - the apocalypse mentality.

It's hard to want to make the local, institutional community contributions when one feels like what is 'normal' now (a stable economy, 'apparently' healthy ecosystems, etc.) is going to explode - civil war, nukes, ongoing imperialism, global warming, water/topsoil leading to agricultural collapse etc.. Creates a turtle effect: hiding out in one's shell.

This might explain the desire to look globally first and most importantly. The big stuff makes the small stuff less inspiring...?
reactionary or what?
Comment by North (Norrie) Wood on 3rd December 2016
It is unfortunate that the message Andy Vine offered was taken in a way that a few did not appreciate.
I'm middle aged (+50) and fully understand Andy's message's intent. Yet somehow that message is missed by many of the young adults if I read the comments correctly.

Andy wonders why there are few young adults in his region of volunteering and after attending a Standing Rock meeting saw where the younger generation is. Paying attention to a bigger issue impacting us all. Andy fully understands that and says so. No snark, no anger. No finger pointing. Just "I understand" and I believe he was complementing the youth that they are paying attention to the bigger issues facing us all today.

Andy's concern for the future generations of residents is addressed by planting seeds offering opportunity for others to step up.
No insults or demands or entitlement do I read in his words.

I am disappointed to see so many local readers see "red" in what was clear to my aging mind as a reach out to the young adults of Cortes. A Notice.

Poison? Calling out? Judgemental? Get your eyes checked? What I see is what we old folks call Reactionary and or Defensive.

I find it unsettling the way Andy's message was received. Maybe folks need to read the points he made again before writing some of the unkind words I've read here and before reacting as often the inflection and or meaning can be lost in the flat tone of text on a screen and a reread may bring a clearer understanding of the intent. Us old folks don't have the same lingo as the youth... and a generation gap seems apparent here.

To the point of volunteering keeps one healthy according to the study posted.
I am more inclined to believe that the healthy volunteer as the not as healthy crowd are less able.
We all volunteer in one way or another and a local personality who see's a hole in the tapestry of our community should be able to post his perspective w/o a barrage of attacks - after all we are all family/community here.

Just sayin'
"Lending a Helping Hand" - Discover 10/15
Comment by Myrna Kerr on 3rd December 2016
Quote from Discover Magazine October 2015
"The more you do for others as you age the more you do for yourself. Volunteering eases stress, which in turn, lowers the risk of disease and mortality, particularly in those with cardiovascular disease. People older than 70 who volunteer for more than 100 hours a year report better health than senior non-volunteers University of Minnesota researchers reported in 2005. Other studies show that committed volunteers have less chronic pain. Volunteering also gives participants a sense that they are valued and needed, which may ward of thoughts of being worn out or useless, says psychologist Benjamin Gottlieb of the University of Guelph in Ontario, Canada."

The Southern Cortes Community Association (Manson's Hall is in need of volunteers - no need to wait until you are 70 years, you can join tomorrow at any age and improve your health!
There has to be a better way
Comment by Kirsten Vidulich on 2nd December 2016
Any comments that deductively calls out any one demographic reactively is destructive by nature- especially when referencing a judgemental observation by one small group against another in a small community . Resentful blanket addressing of any one group of people is about as unhealthy a mode of communication as we have in our culture.
Rather I encourage a open invitation if you are noticing holes in our community needs, allowing people the option of participating in an encouraging way as opposed to an aggressive challenge to step up!
"resentment is the poison you drink hoping the other person tastes"
I can name a few holes I encourage others to participate in
The Cortes School Hot Lunch Program- currently can only operate once a month due to lack of volunteers.
Mentors for various Youth Programs -Teen Szene and AIL are always looking for engaged mentors to offer experience and skills.
All the Cortes Boards always scrambling for active members.
Just to name a few
In gratitude for all we all do,

A walking senior
Comment by Myrna Kerr on 2nd December 2016
The seniors walk to keep their health and stamina up so they have the strength to keep on volunteering!
Whoa, slow down folks
Comment by Richard Lawton on 1st December 2016
I interpreted Andyís message as very heart-felt with not the least wish to be critical.

Thereís another component here - a deeper one.

We behave very differently in a motel room than our own home - our own home gets long term effort, support and improvement, and while we act responsibly in a motel room, we donít do things that enhance its future.

The deciding issue is a sense of ownership and belonging that new people donít have because they sense that Cortes cannot provide, and local people have stopped expecting as they saw Cortes slip away year after year after decade.

It goes beyond hope and hype. It depends on the presence of earnings and permanence.

Never mind loyalty to coops and WCCís - thatís like fixing hub caps and door handles when the engine is broken. When we get serious about providing the real components of a stable society, new people and young people will automatically recognize it, shift their attention and start contributing to local, and less to global.
Get your eyes checked!
Comment by Ron Kroeker on 1st December 2016
Have a look around you Andy. The average age of Canadians is 41 for women and 39 for men. The average age of Cortes Islanders is over 51. 35% of our population is over 60. As a group, we are old.
I can name dozens of young people who contribute hundreds of volunteer hours to our community institutions. The entire board of the WCC is younger than you are.
Having served on several boards and volunteered for many years myself, I've heard your complaint many times before. Perhaps the reason younger people donít get involved with organizations you care about is because they have to deal with judgmental attitudes?
Thanks for responding to that with humour Myann
Comment by Mary Clare Preston on 30th November 2016
see title
I Beg to Differ...
Comment by myann on 30th November 2016
Many of us younger adults are actually quite involved in local organizations...perhaps not at the Museum or the Harbour Authority Board, and definitely not on the Board of the Senior's Society... but over the past 10 years or so I have noticed a HUGE increase in community involvement, with "younger adults" volunteering on Boards such as FOCI, the Cortes Natural Food Co-op (which was actually FOUNDED by younger adults!), the Whaletown Community Club, Linnaea Farm Society, and The Children''s Forest name a few. And then when you consider that many of us "younger adults" are also juggling several different jobs (often providing valuable community services) as well as raising children without any access to daycare...whew! I don't even have time to go to the Walking Group!
I'd also like to give a special thanks to our local Fire Department crew, which includes MANY younger adults who put in a LOT of volunteer effort to keep our community safe and your Fire Insurance premiums low!