The recent healthy living workshop in Oliver resulted in some fantastic ideas that should be actively pursued.
Our favourite is “adopt a senior.”
What better way to bridge the generation gap than partnering a local youth with a local senior. There are many youths in Oliver who can learn a great deal from their elders, and vice versa. It goes beyond companionship to the point of mutual respect for each generation. There’s humility, history, character, empathy, and the list goes on.
Another idea we loved was Allan Patton’s suggestion of taking all of the televisions and throwing them out the window. That will never happen, but it’s the thought that counts.
Yes, children spend way too much time numbing their brains with electronics. But look at it this way: that addiction is better than drugs.
The borrow-a-bike, return-a-bike idea is good too, but sadly we can’t see too many bicycles being returned at the end of the day. Same goes for golf carts; they’re just too fun to drive.
Establishing outdoor restrooms in various locations gets our vote, because how many of us have children that need to go at inopportune times. Wandering into a fast food restaurant pretending to look at the menu, then making a bee-line towards the restroom is just too much guilt to bear.
Another vote-getter is more recycling stations on street corners and composting stations in the workplace.
We agree that Oliver needs more youth engagement via community projects such as mural painting. An Oliver youth advisory council would also go a long way in fostering pride and decision-making. The high school should approach Town council to consider the formation of such a group. If kids want more say, this is one way to do it.
The idea of establishing outdoor exercise stations is also favourable in promoting health and fitness. Sections of the hike and bike trail would be ideal for this.
Although, don’t forget, this idea was already proposed by Bill Ross and Murray Soder, but bureaucracy made it a couch potato.
Growing a garden at the high school is a good idea and would definitely complement the new home-economics department.
Exposing more youth to the fruit growing industry is another opportunity that should be explored. Pairing students with local growers like David Machial would teach them a viable livelihood and keep them in Oliver.
We strongly urge the healthy living coalition to actively pursue these ideas and not let them sit on the shelf like many ideas do. Hopefully a few champions will come forward to kick-start these projects.
Lyonel Doherty, Editor