Caregivers were stars at Holiday Dinner

Caregivers were stars at Holiday Dinner

As a newer member of Ashland Rotary I had the pleasure of attending the Seniors Holiday Dinner Wednesday evening for the first time.

It was a very magical evening in many ways, but what struck me the most was the respect, love, patience and care that the caregivers from the various nursing homes showed to our guests. I don't have their names to mention individually, but they need to be commended publicly for the work they do.

They treated the guests from their nursing homes with the attention I would expect them to give their own parents. The logistics of manuevering 175 seniors, including those in wheelchairs and walkers, in and out of the armory provides a challenge in itself that would test the patience of any of us, but the caregivers still had plenty of energy to tend to the special needs of each of the guests throughout the evening and make sure they had a memorable holiday experience.

I am thrilled to have witnessed it and it is enough to restore my faith in mankind. Thank you to each and every caregiver for the important work you do.

Liz Murphy

Ashland

Choice Point program addresses bullying

In his guest opinion, Chris Honoré states "Our schools offer a perfect platform to reinforce and insist with no exceptions, that everyone is worthy of respect." And that "Every school should model tolerance for all."

As a follow-up to his suggestion, Mediation Works, the Rogue Valley's local dispute resolution center, offers Choice Point, a three-day Bullying Prevention and Bystander Awareness Program. Choice Point empowers students by teaching them effective tools to support targets of bullying and harassment.

Choice Point trained over 1,141 students in six different schools for the 2008-'09 school year in our valley. Ninety-four percent of participants report becoming more aware of the importance of becoming an ally, and 90 percent of participants report becoming more aware of ways to help someone being targeted. (Bully, target and ally are all terms used in the training.)

So far this school year, we've served between 550 and 600 students.

Requests for Choice Point and our Peer Mediation program delivery for this December and January alone include three Medford elementary schools, Ashland Middle School, Talent Middle School and schools in Brookings, Astoria and Jefferson, as well as Weed and Arcadia, Calif.

For more information, please visit www.mediation-works.org, or call 541-770-2468.

Carol Hwoschinsky

Mediation Works board member