The Kiwanis Club of Duncan presents the student action planning team members with a $2,000 donation. (submitted)

Coming up in Cowichan: From Earth Day to plant sales, planning to an open house

Make tough decisions now for, when you can’t

Who needs to know?

Have you ever wondered who you should talk to about your wishes for your future health care — really asking yourself, who needs to know?

April 16 marks Advance Care Planning Day across North America, and it’s a great time to consider these questions if you haven’t already.

Answering these questions is known as Advance Care Planning – a process that supports you and your family to prepare to make decisions about your future health care. It involves understanding and sharing your values, beliefs and wishes regarding health and personal care.

This information is used during conversations with health-care providers about the treatments and care you receive, to help you get the care that’s right for you.

Take Russ Cook’s story.

The British Columbian was strong, fit and healthy. An avid skier and road cyclist. But at age 58, he unexpectedly collapsed and ended in a coma. His family rushed to his side. After the medical diagnosis was known, his wife Karen knew what to do.

You see, she had an incredible gift of love from her husband of nearly 33 years — a gift that enabled her to make a decision on his behalf without conflict or guilt: He had expressed his wishes to family and friends should something medically catastrophic happen. He had an Advance Care Plan.

“It was an incredible gift to me that I didn’t have to second guess what he wanted, or if I would be doing the right thing,” recalls Karen. “In the chaos, the trauma, the overwhelming emotional turmoil, it created clarity when our lives were turned inside out.”

Advance Care Planning Day is a day to remind you to ask yourself, “Who needs to know?” By doing so, you’re realizing that you need to have conversations with your family and health-care providers (such as your family doctor and pharmacist). This will be your “team” — led by your substitute decision maker — that will to make decisions for you if you cannot.

Cowichan Hospice holds information sessions on Advanced Care Planning at the Hospice office as well as in the community for interested groups. The next dates for the sessions at Hospice are April 26 and May 24. For more information, visit cowichanhospice.org

Summer Games volunteers invited to Open House

The countdown to mark the start of the Cowichan 2018 BC Summer Games is officially on, and Games organizers are have put together a Volunteer Appreciation Open House for April 16 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. to express their gratitude and get more information into the hands of eager volunteers.

“As part of National Volunteer Week we would be thrilled if you stopped by our Games office (540 Cairnsmore St., Duncan) on April 16 between 9 am and 6 pm. This will be a fantastic opportunity to learn more about your Games job, select the area you want to work in, ask questions, meet other volunteers and give us a chance to personally thank you,” read a message from Games organizers.

There are prizes to be won and light refreshments served.

Volunteers are also encouraged to bring friends, family and neighbours who may be interested in signing on to volunteer themselves.

Whether you can make the open house or not, volunteer management chairs are working hard to contact all registered volunteers to discuss job selection and assignments to areas they will work in.

You can also join the Cowichan BC Games Volunteers group on Facebook.

If you have spare time now, Games organizers would love to have you join the pre-Games team. If you would like to be contacted about joining email volunteerhours@bcsummergames.ca.

Leadership Conference for Youth Action Day

The Cowichan Intercultural Society’s Compassionate Leaders Project is supporting a group of SD 79 secondary students to organize the 3rd annual Youth Action Day.

This year, the student action planning team is planning a Leadership Conference to be held on Friday, April 20, from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at Quamichan Secondary School. It’s open to all district students free of charge but pre-registration is required. Conference information and registration forms are available at http://cis-iwc.org/youth-action-day/ or by contacting Ray Anthony, Project Coordinator at CIS 250-748-3112 ext 203 or ray@cis-iwc.org.

The student planning team has organized a day for student delegates including emcee Jon Williams of 91-3 The Zone FM, keynote speaker Michael Bortolotto, musical guest Stinging Belle (March Zone FM Band of the Month) and 12 workshops to choose from (one in the morning, one in the afternoon).

The student team has been hard at work raising money for the leadership conference (as well as a second Youth Action Day event, the year-end celebration at Frances Kelsey on June 6).

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