Red Ribbon campaign turns 25
On the one hand, we were pleased to read that the Canada-wide Red Ribbon Campaign sponsored by Mothers Against Drunk Driving is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.
It‚Äôs good news that the initiative continues to thrive and appears to be making a difference in curbing the numbers of alcohol-related mishaps. The initiative asks Canadians to show their support for the victims of those tragedies and their families.
On the other hand, the news is not so positive when you realize that even after 25 years, there are still far too many people who obviously don‚Äôt get it. Otherwise, there would be no alcohol-related mishaps at all, while the reality is, there are still far too many.
MADD statistics indicate between 1,250 and 1,500 Canadians are killed and more than 63,000 injured as a result of impaired-driving incidents each year.
And while we‚Äôre sure these numbers are lower than they were in the past, they‚Äôre still appallingly high, especially when you figure in the cost, both human and in terms of the medical system and the toll on the community at large.
The local MADD chapter suggests that in addition to the many volunteers who take part in the Red Ribbon campaign, MADD Canada‚Äôs biggest partner in its quest is the law enforcement community.
Statistics from the Halifax Regional Municipality now indicate 60 per cent of all impaired ‚Äďdriving apprehensions are the result of tips or calls from the public.
MADD officials and police are both renewing their call to have more people call 911 to report drivers they suspect are impaired.
The 2012 Red Ribbon campaign, recently launched in various locations in our area, continues over Christmas and New Year‚Äôs Eve, wrapping up Jan. 1, 2013.
Teachers recognized for ‚Äėmaking a difference‚Äô
There are few professions more often maligned that that of the public school teacher, but at the same time, if you ask those who teach, there are few professions more personally fulfilling and rewarding.
Recently, the Nova Scotia Teachers Union recognized 10 teachers province-wide through its Teachers Make a Difference initiative.
The 10 finalists represented most if not all regions of the province ‚Äď by design, according to NSTU president (and Kings County teacher) Shelley Morse.
The list includes Steve Wohlmuth, a global geography teacher at Central Kings Rural High School for the past 20 years.
Speaking last week, Wohlmuth said he accepted the recognition on behalf of ‚Äúplenty of teachers,‚ÄĚ including many of his colleagues here in Kings County, who he feels are equally deserving.
Anyone who knows Steve Wohlmuth knows his dedication to teaching doesn‚Äôt stop at the door to his classroom.
As founder of the Port Williams-based Launchers Athletics throwing club, he has furthered the education, both athletic and otherwise, of scores of young people outside the classroom as well.
Kudos to Wohlmuth on receiving this recognition, and the reality that there are many just like him who, even after two decades in his chosen profession, are still willing - and able - to make a difference to our youth.