Breaking News | When it’s in MBY

The face we turn toward our own unconscious is the face we turn toward the world. ~R. Rohr~

Breaking news close to home

This has been an unusual week in our household. Typically, effects of shootings and other violent crime are far removed from us. We can offer our version of "thoughts and prayers" alongside those of other relatively unaffected citizens. This week, a shooting at a local mall felt very close to home, and it has us talking.

One of our adult sons works in media management for a North America-wide retail store. When word of an "active shooter" reached him on a Monday evening in September, he jumped to action. He and his (wholly untrained) co-workers promptly locked the store down. They escorted customers safely out through a controlled entrance, and found their own way to safety in good time.

The first I heard about it was in the laundry room. My grown-up boy quietly came up the stairs to where I was sorting and began with, "I've had quite a day. It didn't shorten my shift, or anything," (Oh, the details we offer when we're in shock.) "but there was a shooting at the mall today."

Sometimes you just need eggs

And from there the story unfolded. As shock wore off and his body started to adjust from the grip of Adrenalin, problem solving, and emergency response, he wobbled. "I was fine, Mom. Fine. I did everything right. But this was pretty close to home." We breathed a little. He took a minute for solitude and quiet and weeping, and then obeyed my command to come downstairs and "...eat some eggs!" Once at the kitchen island, head lowered in exhaustion, his first words were, "Nothing even happened to me."

But of course something happened "to him." He wasn't threatened with a gun, or grazed by a bullet. Nor did he have direct contact with the police officers securing the mall. He was not physically harmed in any way. But something most certainly happened to him. Our conversation last night brought the wobble to the surface again, and I watched him wrestle with his emotions: he has been impacted by this.

A non-anxious presence in an anxious world

The victim of Monday's attack, and the lives of every patron and mall employee in the vicinity of that shooting are forever altered. The life of the shooter is changed. One more thread of our society's fabric has been tugged on. First responders to the scene that day will never go to work the same way again. And they may not go to the mall the same way, either. My own family's experience is a gentle story of the impact of the anxiety, rage, hostility, and just-beneath-the-surface tendency to violence that some of our fellows are experiencing.

When Rohr says, The face we turn toward our own unconscious is the face we turn toward the world, we can draw both comfort and caution.

Our intentions, our habits, our way of being in the world? It matters. If we are challenging our own implicit biases, and broadening our understanding of humanity and belief, we will contribute to peace and goodness broadly. When we nurture hate and small mindedness? Well, that's what we'll put out into the world.

If we tend to our own interior life with compassion and patience and quiet, we may find that is what we have to offer others around us. A person who does violence has turned, first, on himself. Fear and anger are in the driver's seat; the narrative in that mind is one of self-preservation and survival. There is greed and anxiety coursing through the hand that clasps that firearm.

What would it be like to be persuaded of the value of all people? The right to dignity and safety. The right to life. What if that offering of dignity begins with how we view the value of our own "wild and precious life" (M. Oliver)?

It's not easy being mean

As a (proud!) mama, I note the way of being of my son; I note that of the young man that wielded a firearm in a crowded mall. My son has worked diligently, effortfully to cultivate a life of goodness, gentleness, peace, patience. He hasn't been haphazard about this. He's thought about who he wants to be as a man; he's made consistent choices to practice a way of being that is non-anxious. "But it's hard, Mom. I feel all the feelings. Like, I can handle these crisis situations really well, but the after effects? They're terrible." And yet, he holds. He remains true to his values.

The young boy (because he was just a boy) that decided that an act of violence was the solution to his own struggle has a different process. A thousand factors and choices brought him to the mall with a gun that day. Doubtless, there has been deep suffering in his life. Certainly he has not had the know-how of applying himself to serious self-assessment and character work. But maybe this will be a changing time for him? Maybe he, too, will consider who he wants to be, how he wants to be, in this one short life? Perhaps he can shift his inward gaze to a gentler, safer, more compassionate lens, and thereby alter his footprint in the world.

I lean into the end of the week taking a little stock of what my own self-care/other-care way of being really is. Is that way altered when breaking news violence vibrates the strings of my family web? Are there ways that I can extend deeper kindness and compassion more broadly? Perhaps if I look more tenderly on myself my gaze upon the world be softer, too.

Canadian Music Therapy Fund

Canadian Music Therapy Fund |Charity of the Month

The Canadian Music Therapy Fund (CMTF) wishes to create access to music therapy for Canadians who need it most.

They bring music therapy and therapists to rural, urban and remote communities from coast-to-coast. Their work brings music programs to people on the autism spectrum, and to those living with Alzheimer’s disease. Further, they engage those challenged by anxiety and depression. CMTF also reaches Canadians rehabilitating speech or motor skills, as well as those needing pre- and post-natal care, or living with a brain injury.

Canadian Music Therapy Trust Fund
Canadian Music Therapy Fund

CMTF does this by awarding grants, scholarships and fellowships to innovative certified music therapists. As a result, these therapist are then empowered! They use their talents and expertise to make music therapy accessible within their communities.

Work that matters

The Science is in: music therapy works. However, music therapy is not a widely recognized form of therapy. It is seldom funded by private insurance or government programs. This means that, for the most part, if you can't pay for it, you cannot access it.

Music therapy helps us to move and communicate, to cope, to better understand ourselves and to reach our full potential. CMTF wants to make music therapy available to anyone who needs it.

Together, they are transforming lives. With your support, access to music therapy for all Canadians is possible!

Help the CMTF hit the high notes

Donate your car through our program today and choose our charity of the month as your donation recipient!

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Compassion

Rumi on compassion

My dear heart, never think you are better than others. Listen to their sorrows with compassion. If you want peace, don't harbor bad thoughts, do not gossip and don't teach what you do not know.

In compassion and grace, be like the sun...
In generosity and helping others, be like a river...

Listen with ears of tolerance! See through the eyes of compassion! Speak with the language of love.

Psychology Today

Beverly Engel's article, "What is compassion and how can it improve my life?" notes that, "...instead of assuming that the reason someone has done something that hurts you is because they are selfish or inconsiderate, assume instead that they had a good reason for doing it...". This extension of the definition takes us beyond a confusion between empathy and compassion, and into even broader understanding. What if my assumptions about your behavior toward me are incorrect? What if I've presumed something about your motives, your thoughts, or your feelings are way off?

My filters get a little foggy from time-to-time. It's easy for me to assume that someone I love means me no harm and had good intentions in her treatment of me. It's not much of a reach to presume that someone who's not my biggest fan might wish me ill. It's probable that neither were actually thinking about me that much at all. Sometimes people are just distracted, or caught up in their own stuff. I know when I get that way I can be insensitive or just plain checked-out. Compassion allows me to expect the best from my others.

And when in doubt? It doesn't take much to check-in with a, "Hey, I noticed you didn't say thank you for that amazing lasagna I made for dinner. 'You ok?" You might get an abashed, "Sorry! Great dinner!" Or you may learn that some things went down that need a little tending.

Power Lifter on Pause

Our power house of a human, power lifter Ryan Lapadat, has a strong start to his enormous charity-awareness effort. A strong beginning. And then...a bit of a bump in the proceedings...

Lapadat won't quit

You've been following along and you know that our favorite power lifter, Ryan Six Pack Lapadat, is tackling a 143 day, 100+ charity promoting challenge of car flipping. Well, being a soft-bodied animal, as we all are, Ryan's body has asked to slow things down a little. He's torn a calf muscle and isn't bouncing back as quickly as he hoped.

Here's what we know from Ryan (emphasis...and a little punctuation tweeking, mine):

"Here is a brief update:

Yesterday I partially tore my right calf while flipping the car. It felt like a pop, loss of strength, then I couldn't walk on it. Very painful. I am walking with a limp now.

But it would hurt me more to quit. And I know that. So today, I stepped up to the car and flipped it again, and I intended to keep flipping this car. Things do not always get worst. Sometimes they get better. Keep the faith.

I will adjust to keep this going. Terry Fox only had one leg anyway.

To make the car easier to flip with my torn calf I have found flipping from the roof to the wheels is easiest. This is because I can grab the window ledges and flip it. The window ledges are higher up than the handle we put on it, and I do not have to bend my injured right leg.

This is day 9. We have 143 days. This is early days. By the time we reach 100 days this story could really get interesting."

What this means for the challenge

That was a few days ago. But Ryan needs to give his calf time to heal. As a power lifter, his body is a well-tuned instrument and the source of his livelihood.

The determination, creativity, and all-around drive Six Pack bring to this are the stuff of inspiration. You know where he's coming from: sometimes life knocks you flat. Or, it throws you a little off course, at least. Ryan's not fazed. And we're excited to see how this pause in the process leads to renewed health and energy for the challenge.

Lapadat hopes to pick up where he left off sometime early in October. We're on board with that and will be pulling for a full and power lifter worthy return to recovery.

Keep watching here for updates. The links for Ryan's Twitter and Instagram are in previous posts as well -- he's an inspiring guy to follow around! We're proud to be working on this effort together and wish Ryan full health from head to toe.

6packlapadat | Flipping for charity

Follow DAC's favorite powerlifter

Ryan (6packlapadat) is really doing this! He's on day 18 of flipping4charity. Stifling heat, a few obstacles, and an injury won't slow this guy down. Check his Twitter feed for some of his updates.

Following Lapadat on Instagram is worth a daily check-in, too. 6packlapadat and Donate a Car Canada are excited to be promoting over 100 Canadian charities in this unique way. Does it spark you imagination? How are your unique capabilities setting you up to do your version of good in Canada? In your city? In your neighborhood?

Stay tuned on our social media platforms for daily updates on Ryan's efforts, our charity connections, and ways that you can be involved in spreading the word.

flipping4charity

What Six Pack is up to

Lapadat's daily car flip challenge is trackable via our Donate a Car Canada Twitter likes. 'Good days, or tough days, Ryan is working hard for a wide variety of Canadian charities.

Learn more about Ryan, his vision and mission, and just how much he's already tackled (and flipped) in his career, so far. Check him out at The Great Canadian Bucket List. This guy is committed to his craft and to caring for Canadians in larger-than-life ways.

Charities

Over 100 of our receiving charities are being spotlighted in Ryan's ambitious endeavor. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada is in his sights. BBBS is changing lives by investing time and mentoring resources into the lives of Canadian young people. "Changing the course of young lives changes the future of communities. By every measure, BBBS returns positive results in the mental health, employment and civic engagement" of the recipients of their programs.

How to give

Follow and share Ryan "Six Pack" Lapadat's power lifting, flipping4charity efforts on Twitter. Explore ways to give to the charities that he's championing. Volunteer, offer gifts-in-kind, donate cool cash, or donate your vehicle. Every gift counts!

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Speeding Tickets

Speeding tickets don't land in our mail box very often. But when they do, they hurt.

Notice of offence

Given the number of vehicles rolling out of our driveway on a given day, we do okay around here. Four of the adults living in our home drive for work and school and leisure. Our little Scion XB just flipped the odometer to a visually satisfying, 111,111 kms. So, we're on the road a lot. And some days our pedal pushers can get a little heavy. But we don't pull a lot of tickets.

I'm just about to online pay the $233.00 I owe our beautiful city for my most recent traffic violation. I was driving over 80 kms/hr in a 60 km zone. I deserve a strong consequence. Of course, I want to defend myself just a little. My son looked at the ticket, noted the location, and was immediately sympathetic, "Oh, Mom. That's such a bad spot! The speed drops like crazy from one side of the intersection to the other!"

A little empathy and validation are nice. But I still deserve the ticket. I've driven that patch of road before, and I should have remembered it was a steep slow down.

Playing it safe

I love driving fast. But speed limits are posted for good reason. Safety matters. The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and Transport Canada’s website include the following statistics from the CCMTA: Speed and Intersection Safety Management, Annual Monitoring Report 2009:

1. 27% of fatalities and 19% of serious injuries involve speeding

2. 40% of speeding drivers involved in fatal crashes were 16 to 24 years of age

3. Most drivers killed in speed-related crashes were the ones speeding

4. 80% of young adult passengers who were killed in a speeding crash were in the vehicle with a speeding driver of similar age

5. Single-vehicle crashes accounted for more than 50% of speeding deaths and serious injuries

6. 1 in 3 speeding drivers involved in a fatal crash had been drinking

7. Research indicates that a 1% reduction in speed results in reducing the likelihood of a fatal collision by 5%. (OECD, 2008)

Takin' it easy

So, it's time for me to pay better attention to speed markers. And it's helpful to consider that we're all traffic. Everybody is trying to get where they're going. Everybody has important things to do. And me? I'm as much traffic as everyone around me is.

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The Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation

We're excited to announce that the Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation has received their first vehicle donation through Donate a Car. They are all set with our program and ready to receive your vehicle donation, too. First Time Donation

First time donation

$120.00 is to be forwarded to the charity as their start-up gift
thanks to a generous donor.

Different factors impact how a donation outcome is set. First, each vehicle donated through our program is individually assessed for either recycle or re-sale value. A car or truck may be deemed recycle-ready by our regional agents. In this case a flat rate donation outcome is set by the agent. Whenever possible, a vehicle is re-sold at auction for a higher donation return. The car is sold as-is to the highest bidder. In either the case, the net proceeds from the sale are forwarded on to the donor's charity of choice.

What is JMMF all about?

The Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation is a society that does not tolerate domestic violence. They are a community that brings safety and hope to vulnerable individuals and families.

JMMF strives to remove the stigma associated with domestic violence through community engagement, awareness, prevention and education.  They seek to empower individuals to live a life free of violence.

Where you can find them

Statistics Canada's 2006 numbers on domestic abuse are troubling:

Between 1999 and 2004, 7 percent percent of Canadian women reported being abused by their intimate partner. Furthermore, 9 percent of women under the age of 25 years reported sexual assault or criminal harassment in 2004. Shockingly, 21 percent of abused women were assaulted during pregnancy. At 24 percent of Aboriginal women in Canada reporting abuse, violent acts against indigenous women are startlingly high.

One in five homicides involves the killing of an intimate partner.

These are some of the stats behind the need for a charity like the JMMF. To learn more about Jessica's story and how you can be part of the solution to this complex issue visit the charity site.

How you can help

Donating a car may be well out of the question right now. Would you like to volunteer time instead? Here are some JMMF options:

Third Party Fundraisers
You take the reigns and organize an event to support us!  You’ll raise funds and awareness while building a community that brings safety and hope to vulnerable individuals. Learn more.

Board and Committees:
Board and Committee members help us achieve specific goals and objectives.  (fundraising, outreach, etc.)
Board and Committee Application Form (2018)

Project Volunteer:
Do you have a special skill or talent you’d like to share with our organization?  Graphic Design? Photography?
Let us know and we will work with you to create a meaningful position or project.

Contact:
Teena Hughson, B.A.
Community Engagement Coordinator
587-879-5465
teena@jessicamartelmemorialfoundation.com

Financial gifts are always welcome, and if you'd like to learn more about car donation, just click on the big red button below.

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Farming Smarter

Farming Smarter

Farming Smarter aims to
sustain our land, water, soil, and farmers for the benefit of everyone.

Farming Smarter is growing stewardship

Farming Smarter makes a commitment to foster sustainable farming practices. For example, wherever they can, they will partner, research, inform, and support cost effective projects that are good for the land, air, water and crops.

Currently working in Southern Alberta, their Innovative Projects include:

  • Deep banding immobile nutrients
  • High value specialty crops
  • Precision planting canola
  • Cover crops across Prairie Canada
  • Alternative flee beetle management without neonicotinoids. What is a flee beetle? And why do they matter? Here's what the FS site has to say:
    Flea beetles are one of the major canola pests in Alberta. Currently neonicotinoid-based seed treatments are often used to protect canola seedlings from flea beetle damage. PMRA's recommendation to phase out the use of neonicotinoids has caused concern for growers. Without these seed treatments different control mechanisms must be considered by growers. These may be alternate seed treatment, increased seeding rates, or foliar insecticides. These activities may have negative environmental consequences. Furthermore, they may be less effective than current strategies and they will incur increased production costs

Curious? Check out their summer events:

Farming Smarter invites you to a summer of field school and "plot hops." You may also want to explore their farm days and conference options.

Interested in other projects they've researched? Visit their site and explore:

Why donate to this charity?

Many people don’t realize that F.S. is a registered Canadian charity. They are a non-profit association funded by grants, sponsorship, and donations.  Above all, money donated to them stays in southern Alberta and funds locally directed agriculture focused research.
Your donation to this work, for example, could help them do your most critical agricultural research.

In short, if this resonates with your own values and concerns, we can help!

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Dr. Jay’s Children’s Grief Society

Dr. Jay’s Children’s Grief Society received a strong donation in April. They are one of over 200 organizations to receive Donate a Car Canada gifts this month.

Dr. Jay’s Children’s Grief Society helping children grieve

Talking about taboo topics

Dr. Jay Children’s Grief Program's heart message is that children do not need to grieve alone.

This one-of-a-kind charity provides a free service of grief counselling to dying children and to children whose parent or sibling is dying. Caregivers, medical professionals, families and children can receive training to deal with grief, dying and the healing process.

Services at the centre

The Dr. Jay Children’s Grief Centre provides free counselling services to children and youth who have experienced (or are currently experiencing) a terminal illness and/or death, personally or in their immediate family.

Bereavement Program provides counselling support after a death to normalize grief, encourage emotional expression, provide helpful coping strategies, and support enduring bonds.

Youth Support Program for bereaved youth is for kids between the ages of 13 and 18. The program creates a supportive environment. Grieving adolescents have the opportunity to connect with same-aged peers through art, music, drama, and sport.

Family Support Program focuses on supporting families who have experienced the death of a family member.

Camp Erin Toronto is a 3-day bereavement camp program in Muskoka for children and youth aged 6-17. Camp Erin is free and is open to any child who has experienced the death of an immediate family member or custodial caregiver.

Where your giving goes

Dr. Jay Children's Grief Centre does not receive any government funding, and our gifts are critical. Their counseling program is in high demand and their need of ongoing funding is high.

Through the generosity of people like you, their work has made a difference in the lives of countless children, youth and families who are living with terminal illness, traumatic loss and grief. Your gift to the Dr. Jay Children’s Grief Centre helps to ensure that grieving families have access to the innovative and specialized support they need. They also mean that this support can be accessed when they need it most.

A unique giving opportunity

If this cause speaks to you, but you aren't in a position to donate a vehicle at this time, consider ECHOAGE. If you're planning a birthday party, wedding, or some such event, you can invite your guests to make a donation to the grief centre when they respond to your invitation. You'll find this link right on the charity donation page on their website.

Your donation-ready vehicle will make a difference, too! Click below and we'll get you started on your donation process.

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