BFO - Durham has a Web Page!

Teresa Amy, our Board Member in charge of Public Relations, has created a wonderful new Web Site for BFO - Durham. The site contains information and support articles for bereaved families, poetry written by BFO - Durham Region members, upcoming events at BFO, and links to other websites on grief. Visitors may also sign BFO's "dreambook".

Once the new computer is installed in the office, the web site will change as we access our own service provider and email. It will also be linked to the Provincial Home Page. However, for now, take a look at our website at:

http://www.angelfire.com/ok/GEMM/index.html

BFO - Durham Region joins in the Miles of Memories Ride.

On August 6th, '98 BFO - Durham and Mayor Nancy Diamond of Oshawa joined together with friends and supporters to welcome Jill Hill, Volunteer Coordinator of the Halton-Peel affiliate of BFO, at the halfway mark of her marathon bicycle ride across the province. This summer Jill pedalled 1,000 kilometres, from the Quebec border through to Windsor, in memory of her daughter, Megan, who died ten years ago. Jill also hoped to raise public awareness of Bereaved Families of Ontario.

Thanks to the excellent organizational skills of Mary Morrisey and Harry Hicks, BFO - Durham was able to organize a mini-ride in support of Jill from the Calvary Baptist Church at Ritson and Rossland Rds. in Oshawa to the Waltzing Weasel Restaurant on Taunton Road where the reception was held. Bikers obtained pledges and raised almost $1,000 to support programs offered here in Durham. BFO - Durham is grateful to the Calvary Baptist Church for the use of their parking lot to organize the riders.

Special thanks to the owners of the Waltzing Weasel, Rob Sanderson and Wayne St. John, who not only road in support of Jill and raised a considerable sum of money for BFO - Durham, but who opened their restaurant and hearts to BFO. Many of our members enjoyed the door prizes donated by the Waltzing Weasel. Our thanks to all the staff at the Weasel -- to the bartender, Skippy, for donating his day off to our cause; to Sam and the staff of the Waltzing Weasel for donating their breaks and time off to help us get pledges from the patrons at the restaurant. The staff and owners of the Waltzing Weasel went out of their way to make us feel welcome and hope to make this an annual fundraising event.

Our gratitude and thanks to CJM Contracting, Oshawa, Canadian Tire, Tracy Brentnall, David Beasley and Brett from the Falcon & Firkin for donating raffle prizes and to Kin Village, Markham for donation of staff time to assist in the organization of this event.

The Mayor of Oshawa, Nancy Diamond, who joined in the festivities with BFO members, is shown here presenting Jill with a letter of welcome and support.

Report from the Coordinator

Back in May, Susan Hendricks, Gail Young and myself attended the King's College Conference on Death and Bereavement in London, Ontario. This year's theme was complicated grief. This conference attracts many people from all over North America and some had traveled from as far away as Europe and Australia. It was an excellent learning opportunity for us, although at times stressful and tiring.

A highlight of the conference was a lecture by Therese A. Rando, author of "Parental Loss of a Child" as well as other books on grief and bereavement. Many of you may have heard of Dr. Rando. We purchased one of her books on your behalf for our library. We also attended another excellent lecture at the conference by Dr. Phyllis Silverman who spoke on "All grief is complicated." You can hear this lecture too by borrowing the cassette tape copy from our library. Sue, Gail and myself hope that our experiences at this conference will help us support you better and aid in planning our future programs.

Our library in the office is growing larger thanks to some purchases and many kind donations. I hope you will find some time to browse through our selection of books, videos and cassette tapes.

Unfortunately, despite a great effort by our wonderful office volunteers, it is becoming difficult to maintain the office hours we had first set up. Sometimes the office cannot be manned when you might expect it to be. We sincerely apologize to all. If you can help by donating a few hours a month in the office, it would be greatly appreciated.

The Advisory Board of Directors of BFO - Durham now numbers only five. Sadly, Bill Lem (fundraising, computers records) and Dean Andrey (Chair) resigned from the Board after the completion of their two year terms. A huge thank you for all your hard work, Bill and Dean, on our behalf! We do welcome one new member to our Board, Teresa Amy. Teresa will be handling public relations work and is our new computer "expert". She also volunteers at the office once a week.

With Teresa's help, we plan to have all our records on computer in the office. This should help us update the records more quickly and accurately. We hope to eventually have our own web page linked to the main BFO web page set up by the Toronto affiliate.

I hope you enjoyed the summer months as much as you were able to and I look forward to meeting with you again at the next Family Support Night.

Sincerely,

Gary Goswell