Column: A week of tough questions

The first thing I’d like to do this week is congratulate two of our very own:  Brenda Moffitt and Jennifer Langley recently qualified for the 2011 Canadian Seniors Curling Championships in Digby, Nova Scotia to be held March 19-26.  Their rink, out of the Rideau Curling Club, recently won the Ontario Seniors Championship in Lindsay, Ontario.  This incredible story is made even more incredible by the fact that their rink, led by skip Joyce Potter, defeated Marilyn Bodogh.  Bodogh is a two-time Scotties Tournament of Hearts winner and a two-time World Champion, having won both events in 1986 and 1996.  What an amazing achievement!  Go get ‘em in Digby!

This past week was full of tough questions.  I had Transportation Committee on Wednesday, ARAC on Thursday and we even snuck in a joint Transportation/ARAC meeting somewhere in between.  The hardest questions, though, were from the kids!

On Tuesday morning, I had the privilege of speaking to a Grade 5/6 class at Berrigan Elementary School in Barrhaven.  One of their instructors went to school with me and ironically, we met in Grade 6.  This class was studying our three levels of Government.  It was a lot of fun speaking to them about my job and what the City does that contributes to their daily lives.  I had more questions asked in their class than in the budget consultation last week in Osgoode.

On Thursday evening, a group of Manotick Scouts joined me at City Hall for a tour.  I took them through the Mayor's office and showed them the chain of office.  Many of them sat in the Mayor's chair, which was funny to see their reactions.  I also had a chance to show them my office and the final stop was Council chambers.  Once again, the Mayor's chair was a popular seat.  While there, I fielded many questions about the process of our Council meetings and how our Government works.

All in all, the week was a lot of fun and I truly enjoy showing young students a little glimpse of what I do.  When I was in Grade 5, I had an interest in politics too and to see similar interest in our youth today is very encouraging.  Who knows?  Maybe I met one of our future Councillors this past week.

This is probably the best part of my job.  Children are so enthusiastic about my job and the building I work in and I love to share it with them.  If you have a youth group of any kind or are a teacher at a local school and would like to get together for a similar outing, please do not hesitate to contact me as I would be more than willing to schedule a tour.

Destination Ottawa

I was very excited this week to learn that Canada has won the bid to host the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 2014 FIFA Women’s U20 Championship.  The decision now falls to the Canadian Soccer Association to determine which cities will win hosting duties.  Having recently hosted the men’s U20 event and with Lansdowne to be revitalized by 2013, I’m hoping Ottawa gets the chance to showcase our great city to the world.

Another event we may be hosting soon is the 2013 Roar of the Rings.  This event is the Canadian Olympic Curling Trials and is, hands down, the best event in curling.  The 2005 event was hosted in Halifax and 2009 was in Edmonton.  I’m confident that Ottawa will be strongly considered to host this exciting event.  It’s our time!

Information Session for ROSSS

Rural Ottawa South Support Services (ROSSS) is the name of the new organization that comes into effect April 1st with the merger of Rideau Community Support Services and Osgoode Home Support Program. The mission is to build a rural centre of excellence that advocates and champions the rights of seniors, caregivers and persons with physical disabilities.

A newly formed Board of Directors will oversee the merger along with newly appointed Executive Director Nancy Wilson. ROSSS will have three community sites located in Metcalfe, Manotick and North Gower and it is very possible there may be opportunities in the future to add additional sites.

By merging Rideau Community Support Services and Osgoode Home Support Program, ROSSS anticipates being able to strengthen and broaden services offered to the rural community. There are no plans to reduce services because of the merger.

For more information on ROSSS and its programs and services in rural South Ottawa, you can attend one of 4 drop-in information sessions this month or call 613-692-4697 or 613-821-1101.

They will be holding an info session on Thursday, March 10 from 2-4pm at their North Gower location in the Cornerstone Wesleyan Church.  Stop by to find out more about this exciting new group.

Ottawa Children’s Gala

This past weekend, I had the pleasure of attending the first annual Ottawa Children’s Gala, along with my wife Jill.  Jill is a nurse at CHEO, in the Intensive Care Unit, so this type of event is made even more meaningful to our family.  The purpose of this fundraising gala is to raise money and awareness for the ThinkFirst Ottawa campaign.  ThinkFirst is a national non-profit organization dedicated to preventing brain and spinal cord injuries in our youth.  ThinkFirst teaches school-aged children and youth, sports teams, and community volunteers, to safely participate in the activities they enjoy.  I plan to work with ThinkFirst to help promote safety in our communities and help prevent some of the injuries to our children that have occurred in recent months and years.  To find out more about ThinkFirst, visit www.ottawathinkfirst.ca!

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As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns please email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or call me at 613-580-2491.  Don’t forget to visit me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter.  The best way to keep up to date and informed on all issues is by visiting RideauGoulbourn.ca as this site is updated daily.