June is Brain Injury Awareness Month in Canada

BIST Brain Injury Awareness Crowd in 2010June is brain injury awareness month in Canada. Other nations use other months to raise awareness about brain injury. But what does raising awareness mean? Do we simply want people to hear about it over their morning coffee, then go on about their lives, oblivious to the suffering all around them? Or do we want to change the lives of people with brain injury for the better so that they can actually heal from their injuries, live within society, regain their dreams and families?

Back in 1980, a young man who had survived osteogenic sarcoma declared he would run across Canada to raise awareness for cancer. Back then cancer was seen as fatal, a shameful disease that people didn’t talk about much or they whispered sympathies behind closed doors for anyone caught with having grown a tumour. Children with cancer would, of course, die tragically, as everyone knew. A cure was not possible. Talking about the disease and advances in treatment was restricted to those with it or within medical circles. And then Terry Fox dipped his artificial right leg in the cold Atlantic waters off of Newfoundland, Canada and set off in his quintessential one-good-leg, one-prosthetic-leg hop to run a marathon-a-day across the second-largest country in the world.

Not many noticed his leg dip. But as he ran day after day on the highways of Canada, people began to pay attention. There was no social media, so it was word of mouth and local papers (which still existed back then) that spread the news of Fox’s Marathon of Hope.

Hope . . .

And the one-legged hop of a young man braving to put a public face on a dread disease.

Those are what caught the media’s attention so that by the time he hit Toronto, Canada’s largest city, so many people knew about his mission that crowds swallowed him up and overflowed his fundraising coffers. They cheered him on as he exited the city and turned north.

Cancer snuck into his Marathon of Hope and suffocated his dream.

People had seen that bone cancer had taken his leg. They had assumed he was alright and was awfully brave for running a marathon a day. But when cancer came back and crawled into his lungs, it exploded the myth that people were fine if they continued to live after a cancer diagnosis.

Canada was invested in the life of this man; heartbroken when cancer stole his dream from him; mourned when he died. Canada’s collective emotion drove people to talk about cancer out loud; to donate and fundraise for a cure through Terry Fox runs. Funds pouring in fired up researchers and clinicians to search harder for a cure and to treat people kinder and more empathetically; tangible awareness inspired others to provide support and services to boost morale during dreadful cancer treatments. When someone received a cancer diagnosis, friends, family, neighbours now knew what that meant and rallied around to provide lifts to appointments, hot meals, coffee time. Other countries heard about Fox, and Terry Fox runs sprouted up all over the world. Some cancers are now curable. Children no longer automatically die.

No one with cancer is ostracized anymore.

None of this is true for people with brain injury. They remain in the shadows; mainstream researchers and clinicians talk about strategies and acceptance, not curable treatments; those who understand neuroplasticity and have developed effective treatments remain unknown or dismissed as shams; family and friends are given permission to abandon their injured loved one. And no one is expected to rally around for the years it currently takes to recover and the decades of living within its constricting walls.

Shame and disgust sideline people with brain injury into day programs — keep them busy so that they won’t notice society wants nothing to do with them. Shame and disgust lead so-called experts to judge injury-driven behaviours instead of treating the neurons so that the person can be themself again. Shame and disgust lead most to avoid reading up about it, to avoid the injured person, and to deny the need to accommodate.

We talk good game about concussion in athletes and troops, but we don’t change our attitude to fund treatments, to talk out loud about how the brain affects every single part of you and so every single part of you from your thoughts to your heart can be injured and so need treatment. Talk is solely about the mysterious CTE or PCS — aka untreated brain injury — and donating concussed brains to science.

We need a Terry Fox-type ignition for brain injury.

Brain injury awareness months just aren’t cutting it. What tour de force will ignite a nation, spread awareness of brain injury around the globe to finally change lives for the better?

You’re Invited to Vegas!

Sam’s Town Hotel & Gambling Hall in Las Vegas

Dear Toronto Alumnae,

I have some exciting news to share with you! Psi Psi Psi, the sorority for Tri Delta mothers, is hosting its 2018 International Convention at Sam’s Town Hotel & Gambling Hall in Las Vegas, NV from September 27-30. Tri Deltas are cordially invited to attend!

A meaningful mother-daughter weekend. A fun-filled Tri Delta reunion trip. A spectacular golf getaway. Feel free to take advantage of the discounted hotel rate to plan activities that interest you, then join the Convention for the Saturday banquet and/or the Violet Brunch on Sunday. The banquet is open to all Tri Psis, Tri Deltas, spouses, family and guests. The cost is $45 US per person. The Violet Brunch for Tri Psis and Tri Deltas is $30 US per person.

Also, the Tri Psis will be conducting initiation at the Convention. Tri Delta daughters serve as sponsors for their mothers at this Ritual written by Sarah Ida Shaw Martin. Initiation is open to mothers, stepmothers and foster mothers of DDDs of all ages, not just collegians. Whether your mom attended college, joined Tri Delta, joined a different NPC group or didn’t pledge a sorority at all, Tri Psi sisterhood is open to her. It’s a wonderful way to honor your mom and to share with her the bonds that Tri Psis and Tri Deltas hold dear.

Here is more information about Sam’s Town and how to register:

http://www.tripsisorority.com/2018-convention.html

2018 Tri Psi Conv Registration

Please feel free to share this invitation with your Tri Delta friends. I hope to see many of you there! Kindly let me know if you have any questions. I’d be happy to direct you to the appropriate party.

Loyally,

Carly Klassen

Past President, Toronto Alumnae Chapter

ccklassen@hotmail.com

 

Toronto Alumnae Chapter Leadership 2018-2020


Dear Toronto Alumnae,

On behalf of the nomination committee, it is my pleasure to introduce your Tri Delta Toronto Alumnae Chapter Executive Committee for the 2018-2020 term:

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President Michelle Mercer

Vice President Carrie Illsley

Secretary Laura Trommels

Treasurer Elizabeth Melo

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Alumnae-Collegiate Relations – Giovanna Campagna

Adopt-a-New Member – Caitie Hase

Database – Sandra Porter

Dorothy Cody – Susan Weston

Historian – Christine Kralik

Membership – Krystal Medri

Newsletter – Allison Browning

Panhellenic – Carmelina Macario

Past President Carly Klassen

Philanthropy   Asia Pineau

Social – Selen Sorensen with assistance from Ashley Pivko

Social Media & GIN – Andrea Morassutti

Webmaster  Shireen Jeejeebhoy

Young Alumnae – Melanie Blundell

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Congratulations and thanks to the new officers for sharing their leadership skills with our chapter!

Our most important chapter goals, as identified by the nominees’ Leadership Profiles, are strengthening alumnae-collegiate relations, increasing recruitment of recent grads, boosting attendance at events, offering more varied programming and enhancing our social media presence and engagement.

Nominees were also asked about their dream jobs, regardless of skill or income. From doctor to veterinarian, environmental land use planner to national park tour guide, it’s no surprise that even in their imaginations, our new leaders are focused on compassion and service.

Thank you to everyone who nominated a sister or self-nominated. Special thanks to my fellow Nom Com members Betty-Faye LeRiche and Melanie Blundell for all of their inspired ideas and hard work. We look forward to celebrating the installation of the new officers.

Loyally,

Carly Klassen, Chair

2018-2020 Nominating Committee

THE FIVE Ws OF NOM COM – AND HOW!

(Source: testeach.com)

WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF NOM COM?

  • We are delighted to announce that Melanie Blundell and Betty-Faye LeRiche have joined Carly Klassen on the 2018-2020 Nominating Committee.
  • This brings our total to three members, in accordance with our chapter bylaws, and also provides the committee with a multi-generational perspective.
  • Feel free to reach out to any Nom Com member with your nominations.

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?

  • Looking for a new opportunity? We’d love to hear from you! Please complete your Leadership Profile as soon as possible.
  • Point form is fine and there are no wrong answers.
  • And don’t forget to pay your dues! Only dues-paying members of the Toronto Alumnae Chapter are eligible to be involved in the election process.

WHEN WILL NOM COM FINALIZE THE SLATE FOR VOTING?

  • The deadline for nominations is Friday, February 2nd.
  • Between Saturday, February 3rd and Saturday, February 10th, Nom Com will discuss and finalize the slate.
  • President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary will be presented for election.

WHERE WILL THE SLATE BE PRESENTED?

  • The slate will be presented at the Annual General Meeting at T-Buds on Sunday, February 11th.

WHY IS NOM COM CONCERNED ABOUT COMMITTEE CHAIRS IF ONLY FOUR OFFICES ARE SLATED?

  • While committee chairs are appointed, not elected, Nom Com accepts nominations for these keys roles as well, so we can make recommendations to the incoming Executive Committee.

HOW ELSE CAN YOU HELP?

  • Nominate a sister! Think about the Tri Deltas within your circle. Who might be ready for a new challenge? Who is a little shy, but might be willing to share her talents if given an encouraging nudge?
  • Even if the sister you have in mind is not a current dues-paying member, she can still be considered if she pays her dues by the AGM.

Thanks for your assistance with the nominating process, and for your commitment to the Tri Delta Toronto Alumnae Chapter. We look forward to having tea with you on the 11th!

Loyally,

Your 2018-2020 Nominating Committee

Carly Klassen (Chair): ccklassen@hotmail.com/416.300.4184

Melanie Blundell: m.blundell91@gmail.com/416.453.5337

Betty-Faye LeRiche: leriche@sympatico.ca/905.732.6262

How Your Nom Com Is Like A Rom Com!

In popular culture, Rom Com is short for romantic comedy, a classic movie genre that includes fan favourites like The Philadelphia Story, When Harry Met Sally and Bridget Jones’s Diary. In Tri Delta, Nom Com is an abbreviation of nominating committee, the group that oversees the placement of members in officer positions.

It might appear that Rom Com and Nom Com have nothing in common, but upon closer inspection, they do share some fundamental traits…

Opposites Attract

In a romantic comedy, the leads are usually two opposites who end up completing each other in a Yin and Yang sort of way. Similarly, your Nom Com is seeking various leadership styles and different skill sets that will balance the slate.

Action, Not Words

Although the banter is fun and memorable, it’s the action in Rom Coms that keeps them moving. Your nominating committee is looking for good communicators who will also take action to move the chapter forward.

Unpredictably Predictable

The best Rom Coms are predictable – almost! There’s a certain formula that audiences expect, but it’s the twist and turns we didn’t see coming that keep the genre fresh and exciting. Your Nom Com strives to slate officers who value our traditional events, but who are also interested in creating novel programming experiences.

Please keep these traits in mind as you consider nominating a sister or self-nominating for the Tri Delta Toronto Alumnae Chapter 2018-2020 Executive Committee slate. Click HERE for more information on Nom Com and how you can participate in shaping our chapter leadership for the next biennium!

Loyally,

Your 2018-2020 Nominating Committee

Carly Klassen (Chair): ccklassen@hotmail.com/416.300.4184

Melanie Blundell: m.blundell91@gmail.com/416.453.5337

Betty-Faye LeRiche: leriche@sympatico.ca/905.732.6262

Member News: Concussion Is Brain Injury is Published!

As you may remember, I crowdfunded an update to Concussion Is Brain Injury back in 2016. I’m pleased to announce that it’s finally launched!

Kirkus Reviews: “the intricate details of the author’s experience are riveting and enlightening.”

After many years of incubation, Concussion Is Brain Injury is re-birthed with a brand-new reader-friendly structure, all-new chapters, and updated information on my newest (experimental) treatments. The Treating the Neurons and Me edition tells my story in all its rawness and, in separate sections, outlines the lessons I learned, the treatments I underwent that dramatically healed — and keep healing — my damaged brain. I’ve written it for people with brain injury and those who know people with brain injury, with sections and related blog pages for those who want to know more about the technical details.

Self-Publishing Review: “Jeejeebhoy’s tale is highly emotional…uplifting, while giving a realistic view of recovery.”

Brain injury is a hidden epidemic and unfortunately is not treated under the current standard of care. Although fellow Torontonians like Dr. Norman Doidge have spread the news about the neuroplasticity of the brain and treatments harnessing that, most people with brain injury remain untreated. As I write: “traditional rehabilitation, involving cognitive therapy and rest, were ineffective.” Rest and strategies are not treatment. My goal in writing Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me is to change that and give people knowledge of how they can begin to heal their brain.

Concussion Is Brain Injury

Concussion Is Brain Injury: Treating the Neurons and Me is out now in paperback or ebook. Please check out my website page on it for all the details.

Arlene Chan Receives Heritage Toronto’s 2017 Special Achievement Award

We are thrilled to share fabulous news about one of our Toronto alumnae: Heritage Toronto is honoured to name Arlene Chan (neé Lumb, Canada Alpha 1970) as the recipient of the 2017 Special Achievement Award. Presented by the Heritage Toronto Board of Directors, the Special Achievement Award celebrates individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the preservation and education of Toronto’s heritage. A community advocate, librarian and author, Arlene Chan has spent her lifetime documenting and sharing the Chinese Canadian experience in Toronto.

Born in Toronto, Chan learned her most important lessons at the feet of her mother, Jean Lumb, CM, a restaurateur and social justice advocate. Lumb taught her daughter the importance and rewards of community work, especially with her successful “Save Chinatown” campaign in the 1970s that fought to protect the area from redevelopment. After earning a bachelor of arts and masters in library science at the University of Toronto, Chan chose to devote herself to projects that carry on her mother’s legacy.

Among her many accomplishments, Chan is the author of seven books on the history and culture of Chinese Canadians; she is currently working on a historic guide to Toronto’s Chinatowns. She is the President of the Jean Lumb Foundation and oversees the Jean Lumb Awards which provide scholarships to high school students of Chinese heritage. Chan has also collaborated with numerous organizations on interpretive projects, community programs, and walking tours, including her work with the Ontario Heritage Trust, Toronto Ward Museum, and Heritage Toronto.

Chan’s generous spirit is reflected in her many volunteer commitments. She is a Little Pear Garden Dance Company board member, a member of the Toronto Public Library’s Chinese Canadian Archive advisory group, and serves on the Heritage Interpretation Working Group for the New Toronto Courthouse.

“Arlene Chan’s knowledge and affection for Toronto and its Chinese community are well reflected in her work. Her literary efforts are treasure houses of information and celebration for all those who seek to learn, understand and enjoy.” David Crombie, former Mayor of Toronto

Huge congratulations to our Toronto Tri Delta sister Arlene on this honour!!!

Event Details

The Special Achievement Award will be presented at the 43rd Heritage Toronto Awards on Monday, October 23, at The Carlu, a tour de force of Art Moderne design and a National Historic SiteAt this premier event for the heritage sector, more than 500 attendees will enjoy the Mayor’s Reception, hosted by Mayor John Tory. Winners will be announced during the Awards Ceremony, hosted this year by Christopher Hume, the long-time architecture critic and urban issues columnist at The Toronto Star.

Tickets to the event are sold out. This event is Heritage Toronto’s major fundraiser of the year, raising monies in support of its public programming.

Heritage Toronto is a charity and agency of the City of Toronto that celebrates and commemorates the city’s rich heritage and the diverse stories of its people, places, and events.

Tri Delta Terry Foxers Outrun Their Goal!

Tri Deltas at TFR 2017: Carly Klassen, Jenny Dundas, Krystal Mercer, Michelle Mercer & Carrie Illsley

For the fourth consecutive year, members of the Tri Delta Toronto Alumnae Chapter proudly participated in the Terry Fox Run on Sunday, September 17, 2017.

Our enthusiastic team consisted of Carly Klassen, Carrie Illsley, Colin Watson, Jenny Dundas, Krystal Mercer and Michelle Mercer.

Thanks to our sponsors, we raised $1716, or 114% of our $1500 goal! We couldn’t have done it without the generosity of family, friends, and the following Tri Deltas and Tri Psis: Arlene Chan, Carmelina Macario, Corinne Winnel, Eleanor MacLean, Elizabeth Melo, Georgina Klassen, Jena Crone, Joan Lockhart, Jocette Illsley, Laura Knapp, Nancy Gahm and Susan Weston.

Once again, Michelle Mercer was our top fundraiser and Carrie’s partner Colin Watson was our token male. Congrats, Michelle! Thanks for joining us, Colin!

Colin Watson at TFR 2017

This is the only alumnae fundraising activity that takes our chapter out into the community, both in terms of sponsorship (collecting from non-members) and visibility (wearing our letters). So mark your calendar and join us for the next Terry Fox Run on Sunday, September 16, 2018!

With gratitude & Delta love,

Carly Klassen

Tri Delta Toronto AC Team Captain

Congrats, 2017 Terry Fox Runners!

Left to Right: Carly Klassen, Jenny Dundas, Krystal Mercer,

Michelle Mercer & Carrie Illsley

Congrats to the Tri Delta Toronto Alum Chapter Team for completing the Terry Fox Run on Sept. 17 and for raising $1716 for cancer research! We beat our goal of $1500 by $216, thanks to the generous support of our Tri Delta sisters, Tri Psi mothers, family and friends.

Our token male and group photographer again this year was Carrie’s partner Colin Watson.

Stay tuned for a more in-depth update in the coming days…

Colin Watson at TFR 2017

Last Chance to “Run”!

The Terry Fox Run is less than a week away, but it’s not too late to join or sponsor us!

Bring you, bring your family, bring your friends to the #TerryFoxRun on Sunday, September 17th! Starting at 10 a.m., our core group will be completing a 5 km walk at the Mooredale location. You’re welcome to join our small but mighty group, or create your own challenge at any participating location. For more information or to donate, check out our team page at http://www.terryfox.ca/torontotridelta or read our previous post at http://torontotridelta.ca/2017/08/13/bring-you-to-terryfoxrun-2017/.

Thanks to the Tri Deltas, Tri Psis, family and friends who have already sponsored our team. You will be with us in spirit at the Run on Sunday.

With gratitude & Delta love,

Carly Klassen

Tri Delta Toronto AC Team Captain

ccklassen@hotmail.com