first_imgSubmitted by Barb Lally for Rob Rice HomesThe Rice family believes in giving back to the community they love.Throughout the entire year Rob Rice and his family generously provide time and support for organizations where they can make a real difference.“We feel it is our responsibility to give back to the community where we have been building homes for more than 30 years,” says Rob. “This is where we live, work and raise our children, and we want to help make it a better place for our family and those in the communities we build.”Their efforts extend far beyond issuing a check to the causes they believe in, they back their support with real action. In 2011 Rob and his wife Helena had determined that they needed to specify a goal for annual giving so they made the decision to prioritize children’s needs and homeless pets as causes to help. Now they extend their hands and hearts to two organizations that improve the lives of children and that aid rescue animals.“There are so many well-deserving charities in our community but we needed to pinpoint two so we could really make a difference,” says Helena.Caring for Animals“When I married Rob, I had three rescue dogs and he was living in a pet-free home; it was quite a change for him,” laughs Helena, who grew up in a family that has always helped animals in need. “It didn’t take long though and within a few months he was traveling around with one of my dogs and even taking her to the office to work for the day.”Now she says Rob has a soft heart for rescue animals, even picking them up in communities where he builds to make sure they get to their“Lewis” was lucky to be rescued by Rob Rice on I-5.homes or a shelter where they can be helped.“Just recently Rob stopped on I-5 on the North Fork Lewis River Bridge in Clark County when he saw a confused dog running in the freeway,” Helena says. “Rob had to crawl underneatha truck to eventually get the poor thing out. Rob brought the dog home, took him for veterinary care and we took care of him until we found the perfect owner. One of our staff is now the dog’s proud owner so Rob still gets to see ‘Lewis’ who is named after the bridge where he was rescued.”Every year, the Rice’s, along with other business owners, sponsor a fundraising auction for Concern for Animals, an organization that for 34 years has assisted low income families with the food and medical needs of their pets and rescue animals. But they wanted to do more.“Rob and Helena met with us and asked how they could help us,” says Janey Hanson president of Concern for Animals. “We had bought an older 1920s home for our offices after operating out of people’s homes for years. We showed them our lengthy wish list so they could pick a project. What happened next was amazing.”The new Concern for Animals building was completely remodeled by Rob Rice and his sub-contractors at no charge.Janey says that the local builder sought the help of many of his sub-contractors who donated their time and materials to completely remodel the home. Rob even assigned one of his superintendents to coordinate the work. The long list of sub-contractors who contributed is on the group’s website.“They cleaned out our project wish list,” says Janey. “They even sent in a designer so we could pick our color pallet. They remodeled the kitchen with new flooring, cabinets, counters and backsplash; they fixed a major drainage problem under the house and repaired the basement so we had plenty of room for our food bank. They painted, fixed our ceiling, worked on our heating system and did electrical work and even leveled our parking lot. The list is long.”The group says it would have taken years to complete but Rob and his sub-contractors did it all in just a few months resulting in an office and food bank that will help hundreds of pet owners and their animals.Contributing to Kids “Our son Alex attended the Hands On Children’s Museum of Olympia school for 3 years,” says Helena. “When Rob and I went to his first parent-teacher conference, we realized what a unique learning atmosphere it is and how beneficial the museum is to children in our community, so we decided we wanted to donate our time and resources to this great institution.”Helena began co-chairing the museum’s fundraising breakfast that provides admission for Free Friday Night and then when the new museum was in design stages both she and Rob agreed to provide an entire exhibit that offers kids an experience in construction, a field they know a bit about. The Build It! exhibit allows children to don hard hats and safety goggles while they use builder boards to build a home or they create a Keva structure.Around the CommunityThe Build It! exhibit, contributed by the Rice’s, gets rave reviews at the Hands on Children’s Museum.There are many other organizations where Helena and Rob donate their time and resources.Rob is a lifetime director for the Olympia Master Builders Association and an active board member of Thurston Economic Development Council. He is also well known for presiding over the Home Owners Associations in the communities he builds to help maintain their quality and value.Rob is a founder of Thurston First Bank, initially helping to start the bank and currently chairing several committees for its board. Helena is a shareholder in the bank as well.Helena has served on boards for the Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council and the Thurston County Chamber of Commerce and currently volunteers for the PTO program at East Olympia Elementary, Alex’s school.The Rice’s support Saint Martin’s University, Boys & Girls Clubs of Thurston County and the South Sound YMCA and Rob coaches most of his children’s sports teams, whether it is basketball, football or baseball.Helena admits it all keeps them very busy yet they don’t usually turn away requests for help.“We feel overjoyed to help out this amazing community,” she says. “It is a proven fact that people who give are happier and healthier. That is sure true in our family’s case.”Rob Rice is Thurston County’s largest local home builder and was voted the Best of South Sound for 2013. He has built more than 3000 homes over the last 30 years. He and his wife Helena live in Olympia with their two sons; Alex Michael and Carson. Rob is a graduate of Washington State University with degrees in construction management and architecture. Facebook25Tweet0Pin0last_img read more


first_imgThree of the members have Brier experience.So does two of the first two rinks the Shypitka team plays against to open the eight-team spiel  — Craig Lepine of Langley and Mel Steffin of New Westminster.“We feel confident, we have a lot of experience on the team,” Thomson explained. “We can play an aggressive game and if we get up a little bit we have the skills to hopefully keep things pretty clean.”Day two Team Shypitka meets the other Kootenay rep in the tournament, Castlegar’s Myron Nichol.Joining Nichol is third Rick Brown, second Terry Kryzcka and lead Rob Babiarz. The Sunflower City rink opens Tuesday against Wes Craig of Victoria and Rick Pughe of New Westminster.Each team plays two games each day with the top three teams advancing to Saturday’s playoff round. Friday is set aside for tie-breakers.The top teams automatically gains a spot in Saturday’s final while the second and third squads battle to advance into the championship.“Playoffs would be ideal, finishing first would be even better,” Thomson explained.“You might get away with three losses to get into a playoff but four losses and your probably done. If you can go through with one or two losses I think you’ll have a pretty shot at finishing first.”EXTRA END: The Teresa Hiram rink of Grand Forks is the lone rep for the Kootenays in the Tim Horton’s B.C. Senior Women’s Championships held at the same time as the men’s in Trail. Hiram is joined by third Rhonda Lee Bedard, second Rose Beauchamp and lead Cindy Pettapiece. Fred Thomson would like to think all his years of competing in the Trail Curling Club would give his team the edge heading into play Tuesday at the Tim Horton’s B.C. Senior Men’s Championships.That may be the case, say, at the junior level.This is the Senior Men’s Division where skips, thirds, seconds and leads have seen more ice than an Eskimo.“It’s not going to be easy at all,” said Thomson, playing third for the Kootenay’s top seed, the Tom Shypitka rink of Cranbrook.“I understand (Trail committee) has brought in a different icemaker so he’s probably going to change up the ice somewhat.”“Plus (our rink) doesn’t see a lot of each other during the year . . . we don’t practice we don’t throw rocks together so I don’t think there will be a whole lot of home ice advantage for us.”Thomson, is joined by skip Tom Shypitka of Cranbrook, second Don Freschi of Trail and Bill King of Fruitvale.last_img read more


first_imgThe Trafalgar Girl’s Volleyball team earned the elite status after capturing the West Kootenay Junior Girl’s Volleyball Championships Saturday at Mount Sentinel Gymnasium in South Slocan.It was Trafalgar versus Trafalgar in the final, with Trafalgar winning the title.Mallard’s Source for sports would like to bestow the honour on the Trafalgar squad of Team of the Week.The squad includes: coach Staci Proctor, Amanda Creak, Maia Thibault, Alicia Griko, Lily Huttemann, Sophie Borhi, Mimi Lockhurst, Maia Robertson-Weir, Jaydon Rushton, Brynn Belland, Kristin Vanhorne, Rylee Zondervan, Michaela Anderson, Camryn Parnell, Bryce Winters, Reece Hunt, Shayla Elias, Olivia Kelly, Sophie Edney, Finn Pitcairn and Maren Kernan. They’re back in the Mallard’s Team of the Week winner’s circle.last_img read more


first_imgFrom an elite event of standard distance the Wasa Triathlon, in the Kootenays of B.C., has transformed into one of the most family friendly festival weekends in Western Canada. The event has grown over the last 20 years from 90 competitors to over 1000 participants with nearly one quarter being young triathletes aged between four to 15 years old. Race director, Charlie Cooper says “the event attracts families from all over B.C., Alberta and North West USA.”  “The growth in recent years has been led by the number of young triathletes coming with their families.  We are proud to cater for all ages with the first event day being dedicated to support our younger competitors.”On Saturday June 11, the Trikids Triathlon will again see a large group of smiley kids crossing the finish line for a well-earned medal.  Cooper explains that all young competitors will get to enjoy the same race experience as the adults: professional announcer Steve King, loads of volunteer support, drink stations, electronic timing, the exciting finish chute lined up with spectators, a catered lunch and a groovy t-shirt. “We want these young triathletes to love the sport, experience the competition but above all it’s about participation and having a fun weekend with the family,” Cooper said.”Many Albertan families use the Wasa triathlon as a camping weekend, enjoying the long summer mountain days and impressive setting.” For mums and dads there is some serious racing to be had on the Sunday with the sprint and standard distances both for individual and relay teams.The scenic shores of Wasa Lake attract amateurs and elite triathletes to compete in this swim-bike-run event. First-timers in the sport also target this event as a must-do to kick off their season. It’s not only the picturesque mountain scenery and pure air that attracts competitors says Cooper, the prize money is good too, with $4,300 to be awarded to the top five finishers in the women and men categories. The quality of the competition every year makes Wasa’s standard course one of the most competitive and fastest. All TriKids receive some good orienteering and preparation to make it a fun, memorable and safe experience. Many parents report young ones sleeping with their medals and proudly wearing their Wasa event shirt to school! Registration at www.rmevents.com closes June 9 for Adults & TriKids.last_img read more


first_imgThe Johannesburg skyline. South Africa leads the African continent in the second annual Legatum Prosperity Index. (Image: Chris Kirchhoff, MediaClub SouthAfrica. For more free photos, visit the image library)Janine ErasmusSouth Africa is the leading African country on this year’s Legatum Prosperity Index, which analyses countries around the globe for their effectiveness in creating a climate conducive to prosperity. More than 100 countries came under scrutiny, including 19 from Africa. Rankings are based on 22 key indicators and 44 sub-indicators.The Legatum Prosperity Index goes beyond GDP as a measure of national prosperity. It investigates and gives details of personal and policy choices that can increase the prosperity of individuals and nations around the globe – here the definition of prosperity encompasses both material wealth and quality of life.The index is produced by the Legatum Institute, an independent policy, advocacy and advisory organisation within the Legatum investment group of companies, whose mission is to research and promote the principles that drive global prosperity. This is so that policymakers, individuals, academics, the media, and other relevant parties can better understand how prosperity is created and so implement steps towards its attainment.Legatum derives its rankings based on the prevalence of conditions that foster prosperity in a given country – those factors that promote economic competitiveness and a better quality of life. These are known as drivers, compared to restrainers, which retard prosperity. Importantly, rankings do not indicate the actual prosperity of a country, but rather how effectively it is cultivating the practices that create prosperity.Conclusions are drawn from statistical analysis of more than 40 years of data in fields such as sociology, economics and political science, as well as theory, experience and lessons learned from history, and life satisfaction survey data for the 104 countries.South Africa leads the African continent in terms of drivers of economic and personal growth and wellbeing, followed by Botswana (45) and Namibia (55). These are also the only three African countries not ranked in the bottom quartile, an indication that the continent still faces many challenges. Coming in at number 38 out of 104, South Africa shares its slot with Costa Rica and Poland.Botswana was described as well-governed and in spite of severely high levels of HIV infection, has achieved one of the world’s fastest rates of income growth, while Namibia was found to have no obvious weaknesses and one major strength, equality of opportunity.Australia took the top spot, with Austria and Finland close behind. Yemen is last on the list, just ahead of Central African Republic, Mali and Zambia. These countries’ unfavourable ranking, and others low down the order, is due mainly to extreme poverty while there are some, such as Zimbabwe, that are affected by political instability. This hampers capital investment and consequently accumulation of wealth. Other factors include poor governance, low average life expectation, and high dependence on foreign aid.Legatum’s senior vice-president Dr. William Inboden said, “True prosperity consists of more than money. It also includes happiness, health, and liberty. The prosperity index shows that in addition to economic success, a society’s prosperity is based on strong families and communities, political and religious liberty, education and opportunity, and a healthy environment.”Africa’s biggest economySouth Africa, Africa’s biggest economy, achieved a ranking of 41 in economic competitiveness and 43 in comparative liveability. On the economic side the country scored particularly highly on entrepreneurship, because of the improved ease of starting a business. It also scored highly on religious life in the liveability category, indicating that South Africans enjoy high levels of both religious faith and religious freedom.South Africa’s other strengths were in the area of education, with a population that is relatively well-educated compared to most other African countries. With its abundance of natural resources South Africa has also managed to avoid excessive dependence on revenue derived from export of commodities, as these account for just 4.1% of GDP.A few weaknesses were identified, such as below-par commercialisation of innovation for an economy of this size – at 0.5% of GDP this is less than average. Legatum felt that the low number of R&D researchers is a possible reflection that highly-skilled professionals are at a premium, but noted that the high number of patents is positive. South Africa is known worldwide for its many ingenious inventions, such as the pool-cleaning Kreepy Krauly and the electronic device widely used during cricket and tennis games to measure the speed of the moving ball.With regard to liveability, South Africa has benefited from a stable political environment over the past 14 years, and political rights and civil liberties are upheld. However, income levels are still low and unemployment is high. Legatum cited public health as the country’s biggest challenge, especially in the fight against HIV and Aids.Besides religion, another factor that contributed positively to South Africa’s liveability score is the 30% proportion of women in parliament, which indicates an important role for women in society.Weighted indicatorsSeveral new indicators were introduced for the second index. These include the number of regional trade agreements signed, which is regarded as a driver of economic growth, as well as business ownership rate which is an indicator of entrepreneurship, and net migration, which links to levels of income and life satisfaction.To ensure fairness, Legatum used different key drivers according to a country’s level of development. For emerging countries with average incomes of less than $10 000 per annum per person, raising incomes is a priority because it is the single strongest indicator of how content the population will be. Therefore indicators such as levels of education, commercialisation of innovation and costs of starting a business were more relevant.The index did find, however, that many poorer countries, particularly in Africa, have high levels of wellbeing because of traditional social support through religion and the community. This compensates, to a degree, for a lower standard of living. Higher levels of optimism were also evident in these countries – many people believe that by working hard they will forge ahead in life.For countries with per capita income of more than $20 000, continued economic growth is a focus and here the drivers include entrepreneurship, invested capital and commercialisation of innovation.In richer countries, a key element of continued prosperity and quality of life is the move beyond material wealth and into other areas which improve life satisfaction. Drivers here include charitable giving, political rights and civil liberties, equality of opportunity, and good health.Do you have queries or comments about this article? Email Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.Related storiesSouth African inventionsSouth Africa’s economyDoing business easier in SAUseful linksLegatum InstituteLegatum Prosperity Indexlast_img read more


first_imgTagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Chelsea striker Batshuayi on brink of sealing Monaco moveby Paul Vegas9 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea striker Michy Batshuayi is close to sealing a move to AS Monaco.Chelsea are now in ‘advanced talks’ to loan Batshuayi to Monaco.The striker has been ditched by Valencia after a dismal first half to the season.But Thierry Henry is a fan and believes he can get goals from the Belgian, to fire his struggling side to safety.And a deal is now close. last_img read more


first_imgFred Hoiberg dances in new Infiniti comemrcial.YouTubeWith the elimination of the Chicago Bulls from the NBA Playoffs, all signs point to the franchise parting ways with head coach Tom Thibodeau. Who will take over the historic franchise if the job opens up as expected? According to Yahoo Sports’ NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski, Iowa State head coach Fred Hoiberg is the only coach on the Bulls’ list.“The job will be Fred Hoiberg’s if he wants it,” Wojnarowski said. “There’s not going to be any competition for him. Now, it’s conceivable that Fred Hoiberg decides to stay at Iowa State, but if they make a change and Tom Thibodeau is out, Fred Hoiberg is really the only candidate for this job from the Bulls perspective. But that doesn’t guarantee that he’s going to do it. I know he’s already had to give it thought because it’s real.The full interview with Wojnarowski is available at CBS Chicago.Last week, Iowa State athletic director Jamie Pollard admitted that the NBA is likely in Hoiberg’s future.Jamie Pollard on Hoiberg/NBA rumors: “He has always said from Day 1 that his lifelong goal has been to coach in the NBA…” (1/2)— Travis Hines (@TravisHines21) May 12, 2015Pollard: “…It’s for him to decide when that part of his life he wants to activate.” (2/2)— Travis Hines (@TravisHines21) May 12, 2015I asked Jamie Pollard if he expected Fred Hoiberg to be his men’s basketball coach on Aug. 1: “I hope so.”— Travis Hines (@TravisHines21) May 12, 2015 Will the chance to coach Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler, and Joakim Noah lead him out of Ames? We’ll probably find out pretty soon.[CBS Chicago]last_img read more


first_imgTORONTO — Councillors in Toronto are set to debate whether to allow retail pot shops in Canada’s largest city.City staff recommend that councillors allow privately run cannabis stores to operate in Toronto, saying it would “would have the unintended consequence of encouraging the illegal market.”The issue is on the agenda for today’s council meeting, a day after councillors in two neighbouring municipalities voted against having pot shops within their boundaries.Councillors in Mississauga and Markham voted Wednesday to opt out of hosting privately operated retail cannabis stores, which are expected to open across Ontario next spring.Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie and Markham’s Frank Scarpitti both said there are too many unanswered questions.However, Toronto Mayor John Tory says he plans to move a motion to allow pot shops — while acknowledging he’s not satisfied with the way things are now.“To me, the option of saying there aren’t going to be any in Toronto leaves us in the situation we’re in now, where we have a lot of illegal pot shops,” Tory told local TV station CP24 on Wednesday night.“And I don’t think we want this left in the hands of what amounts to organized crime.”The Canadian Presslast_img read more


first_imgEvents are free except for the Paint Night to cover fees for the supplies.“This is a celebration and everybody is welcome to attend and enjoy themselves,” said Trudeau TUMBLER RIDGE, B.C.- Is home to the week-long celebration of winter, there are planned daily events that offer something for everybody to do.The Winter Carnival is an initiative by Council that was created after the 2010 Olympics, since that time this event is greatly appreciated and welcomed by the community. With Tumbler Ridge being a Northern community and surrounded by recreation, Council wanted to continue the event every year shared Roxanne Trudeau, Coordinator of Programming District of Tumbler Ridge.The week-long event starts on January 21st, 2019 and runs through until January 26th, 2019, by involving local non-profit groups and other groups from the community to help run the events. last_img read more


first_imgNew Delhi: Citing the Pulwama terror attack, President Ram Nath Kovind Tuesday praised the valour and sacrifice of security forces in protecting the country and its citizens.Forces such as the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have been playing a pivotal role in checking separatism and terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir, he said. “The valour and bravery with which CRPF personnel faced the terrorists, who attacked the Parliament (in 2001), have become part of the legend of the country’s security forces. “CPRF personnel have played an appreciable role in checking separatism and terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said during a remembrance service at the National Police Memorial here. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’The service marks the annual ‘Valour Day’ of the CRPF which remembers the gallant fight back by its personnel at the Sardar post in Gujarat’s Rann of Kutch against Pakistani troop on this day in 1965. The president paid tributes to police and paramilitary personnel killed in the line of duty, including the 40 CRPF jawans who lost their lives in the February 14 Pulwama terror attack. He laid a wreath at the memorial, a 30-foot-tall and 238-tonne black granite structure, which was unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on October 21 last year on police commemoration day. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KKovind said a pall of gloom had descended on the country after the Pulwama attack.”People queued up to pay their respect to their (the CRPF personnel) sacrifice. I on behalf of the whole nation paid my deepest respect in remembrance of those brave hearts,” he said. Police personnel have always been alert and active to ensure the safety of the people, and have shown extraordinary commitment towards the nation, he said. This is for the first time that the president has visited the memorial located at Chanakyapuri here. Kovind, the supreme commander of the armed forces, was accorded a “national salute” and presented a guard of honour by a joint column of troops from all the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) such as the CRPF, BSF, ITBP, CISF and SSB. Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba; Director of the Intelligence Bureau, Rajiv Jain; Director of CRPF, Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar; and other officials from paramilitary forces, police and the Union Home Ministry attended the event. In 1965, CRPF troops were posted on border-guarding duties and the Sardar post event is mentioned as a glorious chapter in the country’s military history when only two companies (about 150 personnel) of the force stood their ground and repulsed a Pakistani brigade attack.last_img read more