Here is our virtual meeting by bulletin for April 30th, 2021 This is our last Bulletin for the 2020-2021 season. 2021 is a milestone year for us! It’s our 50th Anniversary as a local branch of the BCRTA. Our bulletin this month celebrates our Anniversary by remembering some of the great social highlights from the past fifty years: Inter-Branch Get-Togethers, Picnics, Mystery Tours, Day Trips and Silent Auctions. We have also included three funny classroom stories and a first year teaching experience in a remoter setting. Watch for the ‘links’ to additional information. We have several beautiful photographs of birds by retired teacher and photographer, Glenn Dreger, again this month. Have a great summer and we will see you in September!–Here is our 2020-2021 Pamphlet.
Our Monthly Bulletins
Here is our virtual-meeting-by-bulletin for February 26, 2021.
Here is our Romance, Love & Canadian Harambee Education Society Bulletin February 26, 2021
Here is our 2020-2021 Pamphlet.
Please feel welcome contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions, comments and suggestions. – Noeleen
2020 BCRTA Conference & AGM Oct. 2-3, 2020
The 2020 BCRTA Conference and AGM was by virtual presentation (Zoom) this year. A positive side of this was that all members throughout the province could view the conference live on Oct. 2 and/or view a recording of the event which will be posted on the BCRTA website soon. We heard Gerry Tiede’s final report as our president. He mentioned that visiting local branches was the highlight of the year for him. He complimented our members for their exceptional effort as volunteers. Thousands of volunteer hours are contributed annually by our BCRTA members to serve our Association at the provincial and branch levels. BCRTA members throughout the province help members to solve problems and members serve on committees to produce communication products, such as our website, BC Connections and PostScript Magazine. We work together in a common culture that reflects our association’s mission: to support the well-being of retirees, advocate for pension security and to support public education. At the AGM, we recognized Gerry Tiede as the new President of ACER-CART and elected and welcomed our new BCRTA president, Grace Wilson. She served as First Vice President of BCRTA for the past two years. She is keen to focus her attention on meeting the goals of our strategic plan, finding ways to maintain and increase association membership and continuing to build up the BCRTA.
The conference was informative, with presentations by Seniors’ Advocate Isobel McKenzie who addressed the needs of seniors in these COVID-19 times. Dr. Steve Young, an expert in public health policy, addressed the prospect of universal Pharmacare and related issues. Dr. Roger Wong, internationally-recognized geriatrician who is familiar to BCRTA members for his regular column in PostScript magazine spoke about the importance of maintaining social contact virtually, rather than in person at this time. Other important elements of the BCTF Conference included the Membership Awards presented to branches for their participation, reports and updates from BCRTA committees and staff, and PostScript Magazine Excellence Awards, recognizing the achievement in print of BCRTA members who contribute to our quarterly PostScript magazine. Here is a bit about the three keynote presentations:
Isobel Mackenzie, Seniors Advocate for British Columbia spoke about issues relevant to seniors at this time due to COVID-19. She noted that 94% of BC’s seniors, over the age of 65, live independently. This number drops to 74%, however, when you look at adults over age 85. She also noted a dramatic increase in the use of our health care system after age 85. One point that Ms. Mackenzie made was that although we have a lot of services available to our seniors in BC, there is no one to coordinate the services. Our seniors are basically given a list of phone numbers of the services and expected to sort it out on their own. She is hoping to make an improvement to this.
She expressed her concern about the number of seniors living in isolation. Libraries, seniors’ centres and recreation centres are operating with reduced services, which could continue for possibly another year, so an environment of less social engagement will continue to be a challenge for us all. Now that children have returned to school, social bubbles have expanded and many families are not seeing their grandparents. Most BC residents recognize the need to have restrictions on contact outside our “partners in care” but everyone is rightly concerned about mental well being and the effects of loneliness. I’m asking our members to be aware. Be kind, be safe and reach out to a friend that may be living alone. – Marney Bethell
Here is Isobel MacKenzie’s presentation.
Dr. Steve Morgan (PhD) is a professor in the UBC School of Population and Public Health. He is a health economist. His work to promote expanded public healthcare plans is well known across Canada. His presentation to the BCRTA conference focused on attaining a Canadian “universal comprehensive public Pharmacare program”. This program was proposed in the Sept. 29, 2020 Federal Throne speech to be in place by 2021. Dr. Moran recommended that members of the BCRTA write letters to our Members of Parliament supporting this public Canadian Pharmacare program. The KTRTA did petitions for such a program in 2018/19. However as this is now close to becoming a reality additional letters would be a benefit. The BCRTA Advocacy Committee was asked to create a template letter for us to use. Dr. Moran provided financial statistics to clearly show to the government that costs for this plan would be covered by reducing the number of hospital visits by people who cannot afford their prescriptions and get into health difficulties. The government would also save money by bulk ordering. Dr. Moran’s slides from his presentation will be available on the BCRTA website (bcrta.ca). Note: BC has the Provincial Fair Pharmacare Plan. It has a deductible for anyone who has an income over $30,000.00. This is a sliding deductible. As we are now in a provincial election this is a good time to ask that this deductible be removed. I have asked the BCRTA for a letter template so that members can lobby MLA candidates in their constituency to support this. – Sheila Park
Here is Dr. Steve Morgan’s presentation.
Dr. Roger Wong is Vice-Dean, Faculty of Medicine, UBC, with specialization in geriatric medicine. He is known for his column on health in BCRTA’s PostScript magazine. Dr. Roger Wong speaks about protecting and supporting older adults during COVID-19 by educating seniors on self-care and new ways to connect with family, friends, and information through technology. Socializing virtually, rather than visiting in-person, can keep us safe. He prescribes limiting our in-person social circle to required people only and he cautions about the potential dangers of the intersection of multiple social bubbles, especially with grandchildren back in school. Limiting in-person visits with family and friends is not quite as good as being there, but all in all, virtual visits are pretty good. Dr. Wong recommends that we continue to advocate for older adults who may be vulnerable and he suggests that we step forward to share how to use digital technologies, such as Zoom, FaceTime and email to connect virtually with grandchildren, family and friends. He wants us to stay socially engaged and prevent the social isolation and loneliness that can have a negative impact on our physical and mental health.
So let’s reach out, step up and help each other to connect socially! Noeleen Bunney
Here is Dr. Roger Wong’s presentation.
Post Script Magazine Excellence Awards: This presentation at the conference is really worth listening to! Especially so if you love to read the articles and enjoy seeing the amazing photography in each issue of PostScript. These awards go to the best writing and best photography submitted by our members. Here are the PostScript Awards presentations for 2020!
Donate to TRU Bursaries
If you would like to contribute to the Kamloops Thompson Retired Teachers’ TRU Bursaries, and receive a tax receipt, please consider writing your personal cheque to the TRU Foundation. Please include Kamloops Retired Teachers’ Bursary Fund on the memo line of your cheque and mail your cheques to:
Office of University Advancement
805 TRU Way Kamloops, BC V2C 0C8
To make an online donation to the TRU Foundation, and receive a tax receipt, please use the TRU Foundation online giving page. Select the orange ‘Make a Gift Online’ tab and then check the box for a ‘Specific scholarship or bursary’. Include ‘Kamloops Retired Teachers’ Bursary Fund’ when prompted to enter the name of the award you want to support. Thank you!
New Page Added To Our Website: In Memoriam – To help us remember the retired teachers who have recently passed away, a new page, called In Memoriam, has been designed and added to this website. You will find the tab for our new In Memoriam page under “ABOUT” in the main menu at the top of this page. You may also access the In Memoriam page here. Special thanks to Harvey Dalley, our website administrator, for adding this new page and keeping our website up-to-date.
Please Keep us Informed of Changes To Your BCRTA and KTRTA Member Contact Information Please let us know whenever you change your address, telephone number and/or email address. You can contact Noeleen at email@example.com or 250-299-1874 . Or give the BCRTA a call, toll free, at 1-(877)-683-2243 and Laurie Boyd will update your information. You may prefer to update your contact information online at https://bcrta.ca/update-member-info/.
Please inform the Teachers’ Pension Plan (TPP) directly to update your contact information with TPP. Press this link for more information on how to contact TPP and manage your Teachers’ Pensions account.
Thinking of becoming a member of the BCRTA and KTRTA? If you are reading this and you are not yet a member, please consider joining! If you are a member, congratulations, and thank you for supporting our regional efforts to communicate on activities related to our common interests, encourage good health and happiness, provide social activities such as our lunch and speaker sessions and so much more. We hope to see you at our local branch events!
We hope that ALL retired educators living in our region join our association! Use this BCRTA application form. Please remember to check the box to add the Kamloops Thompson Branch to your BCRTA membership. If you are already a member of the BCRTA, please make the decision to join your local branch as well.
We welcome new members and the good news is that right now new members get their membership free for their first year: after the first year, BCRTA membership is $40/year for BCRTA and $5.00/year for the KTRTA. Payment can be made by annual deduction from Teachers Pension Plan.
Membership is available to all retired educators from every province and it is so easy to join our association: just go to the BCRTA and complete the online membership form. Please remember to select the box to join the Kamloops Thompson Branch! Or give the BCRTA a call, toll free, at 1-(877)-683-2243 and Laurie Boyd will sign you up.