Don’t miss out on chance to win incredible door prizes while touring state-of-the-art design studio

California Closets Okanagan

California Closets Kelowna Okanagan Valley is excited to announce the opening of its beautiful new showroom and is marking the event with an open house on Thursday, May 25.

From noon to 7 p.m., don’t miss out on the chance to interact with life-size home storage designs, touch and feel the variety of finishes, accents and accessories available, and explore the design studio to create 3D renderings for you to visualize a custom storage solution that matches your taste and budget.

Light refreshments will be available throughout the day, and every customer who attends qualifies for a special 20% off all wood components promotion.

In addition, California Closets will be giving out fantastic door prizes of Cedar Creek Winery tours and two chances to win a $1,500 California Closets door prize.

The best and most comfortable method to find the best partnership for designing your home is to meet the design team and see the quality of the finished and installed product. This new showroom allows anyone in the area to do this, and the design consultants and support staff are thrilled to meet customers from the local community and proudly show off the beautiful new space and products.

California Closets also believes in giving back to its local community and is proud to provide open-house attendees with the opportunity to donate to Mamas for Mamas during the event as part of its continued support for the local charity.

An international brand, California Closets offers exquisite custom closets, organizers and storage solutions. With personalized attention, the designers deliver premium home and office storage systems paired with exceptional customer service.

Building on past successes

As the original pioneer in custom home storage solutions, California Closets has become a prominent industry leader since its modest inception in the late 1970s. California Closets BC prioritizes innovative design that combines aesthetics and functionality, manufacturing products within the province.

The Okanagan team comprises individuals who reside and operate locally, with many boasting over a decade of tenure. Their strong ties to the area and commitment to the company prompted their return when the opportunity presented itself.

Customer satisfaction is the top priority, and by getting to know their clients’ actual needs and desires they can create a design that simplifies their home life and feels like it has always been a part of the home. This practical magic approach is at the heart of everything they do.

Designed to last

The designers specialize in transforming underutilized spaces in homes, both functionally and aesthetically. From small entry closets to innovative wall bed/home office solutions, striking media centres, versatile flex spaces, custom-designed mudrooms, efficient pantries and wine bars, elegant bookcases and inviting bedrooms, they recognize the potential for improvement in every corner.

What may appear as wasted space to others is seen by California Closets as an opportunity for innovative design and optimization.

Don’t miss the opportunity to transform your dream home into a reality.

To learn more about products and services, visit californiaclosets.ca/bc//kelowna-okanagan-showroom and be sure to stop by the open house on Thursday, May 25, at 1217 Water St.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Plan adventurous road trip in your backyard with rich history, cowboy culture, and abundant outdoor activities

Visit a land without limits

When you venture to B.C.’s Land Without Limits, you’ll realize you’re not only making discoveries within yourself, but along every roadway, pathway, trailway and waterway. You have a lot of ground to cover, but expect wide-open spaces with room to roam.

A Cariboo Chilcotin weekend getaway or road trip itinerary should include some or all of these rewarding activities and sites, where rejuvenation of spirit happens effortlessly, and you’ll meet people who are generous of heart.

Situated in B.C.’s Central Interior from the Rocky and Cariboo Mountains west to the Great Bear Rainforest of the Pacific Coast, this region of untamed land and physical riches is an outdoor treasure trove.

“We’re blessed to have the Great Bear Rainforest in the region (one of B.C.'s Top 10 Natural Wonders),” says Amy Thacker, CEO of Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism.

“Plus, the salt water, where you can go prawning or crabbing or sit in a natural hot spring and look out over the inlet and the Pacific Ocean and up at the Coastal mountains.”

Feel the freedom and rush of a gallop across alpine meadows, and later tour the community’s byways and stop along the way for local fare and handcrafted goods. Discover natural wonders with ecotours and guided wildlife excursions.

Keep watch for bears (Kermode bear, too), wild mustangs, California Bighorn Sheep, wolves and mountain caribou, along with dolphins and whales in coves, inlets and ocean fjords along the coast. Cast your line in rivers and more than 8,000 lakes, concentrating along B.C.’s Fishing Highway 24, for bountiful catches of lake trout, kokanee, rainbow trout, brook trout and burbot or try your hand at ocean fishing for halibut, salmon, lingcod and shellfish.

Whether hiking or mountain biking (coined Canada's unofficial mountain biking capital) or while enjoying lake activities like kayaking, rafting or canoeing, the landscape’s kaleidoscope of contrasts will unfold before you.

The old Cariboo Wagon Road tracks through the heart of the lush Cariboo and maintains the Gold Rush historical account. Visit Barkerville Historic Town & Park, where the Cariboo Gold Rush is re-created in 1860s detail, just one of many family adventures of national historical sites that reimagine the past.

“The Gold Rush Trail has long been one of our family-friendly trips because of the connection to learning opportunities, whether our heritage sites, Indigenous cultural sites, and multicultural history of the corridor expressed in our rural communities,” Thacker says.

You'll experience both grassy plateaus, glacier-fed lakes and semi-arid desert in the Chilcotin, where Indigenous peoples’ culture is strong—and ranches and cowboy culture run deep.

Learn the ways of the Wild West first-hand and experience a guest ranch vacation, from cozy cabins and lodge rentals to rustic wilderness resorts.

“Whether you choose a luxury all-inclusive experience or bed down under the stars at a working cowboy ranch, cowboy culture is a huge part of our region,” Thacker says. “There’s a lot of tradition that remains true to those roots.”

Indulge in cowboy excitement at Williams Lake Stampede in July, a sanctioned pro rodeo event.

To reach the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast from Kelowna, take Highway 97C, Highway 5 through Kamloops and Highway 1 to Cache Creek.

For more information, visit landwithoutlimits.com.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Nature's Fare seeks employees to work at its largest location, in Kamloops

Nature's Fare needs workers

Nature’s Fare Markets is getting ready to open its largest location yet. It is a B.C.-based company with local roots, and it is looking for some dynamic people to bring the new location to life.

The newest Nature’s Fare will open in Kamloops this summer in the former Toys “R” Us building on Notre Dame Drive, only a short distance away from its current spot on Summit Drive.

The move will result in an additional 11,000 square feet of space for the Vernon-based organic grocery and wellness company, which has seven locations throughout the province.

As it gears up for its grand opening, the bright new location will be hosting in-store hiring events over the next two months, with the first happening on May 8 and 9. Nature’s Fare is an equal opportunity workplace where individual differences are recognized, appreciated and respected.

“We are looking for motivated, fun people to join our team,” Nature’s Fare talent acquisition manager Dale Querengesser says.“Whether you are just starting out your career or you are a seasoned pro looking for a place to share your passion, you can grow with us.

“One of the really neat parts of working at Nature’s Fare is engaging with our community and our customers. It really is a big part of what sets us apart. We have hired many team members who applied because they liked shopping with us. So if you already enjoy shopping with us, we’d love you to consider joining our team.”

Besides bringing on more folks to cover the larger footprint of the store, Nature’s Fare will be looking for a handful team members with specialized skill sets. The bigger space means some of its offerings will be expanding, including its bistro and bakery sections. Therefore, Nature’s Fare is now seeking those with coffee and barista experience, smoothie experts, bakery specialists and cooking enthusiasts.

Positions will be posted on the Nature’s Fare Markets website, Castanet Kamloops and other job search websites starting today.

“We are really looking forward to being in Kamloops on the eighth and ninth of May, and we hope that if you are looking for your next career step that you will come out and see us,” Querengesser says.

If you are interested in joining the Nature’s Fare Markets team, you can find current openings and in-store hiring event details on Nature’s Fare website here.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

New full-service Metro Vancouver hotel a one-stop stay and play destination

New Metro Vancouver hotel

Forgo those day-long flights and tuck your passport away. Instead, pack your weekender (or weekday) bags and opt for a spring getaway, the season where everything is fresh and new, just like the Delta Hotels by Marriott in Delta, B.C., a one-stop destination experience for both business and leisure travellers.

Delta Hotels by Marriott Vancouver Delta opened December 2022, and is the latest addition to Marriott Bonvoy’s exceptional portfolio of 31 premium brands. Located on 6005 Highway 17A, it's situated in a peaceful suburban setting, with proximity to transportation hubs, making access effortless.

"We're very excited to bring this brand-new, full-service hotel to the Vancouver/Delta region and the busy corridor that exists between YVR and the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal," says Jeff Krivoshen, president, South Fraser Hotel LP.

You'll be treated to an exceptional resort experience, complete with a high-end spa and wellness centre, 24-hour fitness centre, outdoor pool and hot tub (steaming like a hot spring for year-round enjoyment), and the dynamic Cascades Casino adjacent to the hotel, offering a full-scale conference centre, live entertainment, and various casual dining options, including The Buffet with theme nights, and MATCH Eatery and Public House.

An upscale experience, the brand-new 124-room hotel is perfectly positioned for travel enthusiasts looking to visit Metro Vancouver to stay and play at Cascades Casino.

"We're extremely proud to partner with the new Cascades Casino Delta, and to have their Conference Centre and food & beverage offerings as part of the overall development," reveals Krivoshen.

"The property is really something special, not just for its larger hotel rooms, but the higher-quality finishes and furnishings, and all the amenities that will attract people and entice them to want to stay."

Rooms, business, gaming

Family-friendly rooms and suites are well-appointed with a modern design aesthetic, outfitted with a mini fridge, flat-screen TV, and workspaces. For business professionals, prepare for your meeting at the 24-hour full-service business centre, or enhance your conference with the latest in-room audiovisual technology and high-speed Wi-Fi.

Take a relaxing dip in the pool to unwind after a day of meetings or book a spa treatment. "Sévérine Spa and Wellness in the Delta Hotels by Marriott Delta, is undoubtedly one of the finest spa facilities in all of Vancouver," says Krivoshen.

You'll find premium bedding and towels in your room, and walk-in showers to keep you energized, which you'll appreciate, especially if you're on a roll at the casino. Place your bets at 18 live table games, electronic table games, and more than 500 of your favourite slot machines.

With a nod to their casino connection, hotel rooms are named to pay homage to Bond film characters, such as the conference room after Madeleine (Spectre, 2015), and (No Time To Die, 2021), plus the boardroom after Camille (Quantum of Solace, 2008).

There's also a Starbucks Grab 'n' Go outlet, and Delta Pantry with snacks and beverages, exclusive for Marriott Bonvoy Elite members.

Explore beyond the hotel

Ladner, Steveston, Richmond, and Tsawwassen are a stone's throw away, and feature a wide range of dining, entertainment, and shopping (McArthurGlen Vancouver Designer Outlet and Tsawwassen Mills).

Take a short drive for recreation and adventure to Richmond Ice Centre, Silver City Entertainment Complex, and Watermania, along with several nearby golf courses.

For more information or to make a reservation, visit marriott.com.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

One of North America’s premier banks is hiring across BC

TD offers career possibilities

It’s a career move that fosters your talents and experiences, a company that values and celebrates diversity and inclusion, and a place where you can realize your full potential and achieve your career goals.

If you’re in search of a new career opportunity that offers all of the above, then consider a career with TD Bank Group.

As one of North America’s premier banking institutions, TD offers exciting careers in a variety of areas—including personal banking, wealth and more—and is looking to expand its talent pool across British Columbia in the coming months.

“TD offers so much in terms of career growth and a pathway that can open up so many different doors into different areas,” says Jacquilynne Ellison, the bank's manager of talent acquisition for branch banking for B.C., the Yukon and the Prairies.

Consider the role of a personal banker, where you’re meeting with customers to understand their financial needs across an array of solutions: mortgages, personal investing or borrowings, for example.

But it all starts with a commitment—a commitment to know your customer, and to understand and empathize with their needs.

“At TD, customers are at the heart of everything we do across the bank,” says Julie Armour, senior vice-president, Pacific Region for TD.

“That's why our personal bankers take the time to get to know their customers and offer personalized advice based on their financial needs. Our customers put their trust in us to guide them along their financial journey and that's a responsibility we take very seriously. We're always looking for personal bankers who are customer-obsessed and committed to going beyond to provide legendary experiences."

Canada’s top 100 employers

TD has an unwavering commitment to its people, which has been highlighted time and time again. This is a trusted organization with more than 90,000 employees across North America that was recently recognized as one of Canada’s top 100 employers for 2023, along with being named one of Canada’s best diversity employers in 2022.

This is due in large part to the bank's support of continuous employee career development through the online self-directed “TD Thrive” learning platform, mentorship & training programs, leadership development, paid education days and tuition subsidies for courses related to an employee’s line of work.

TD was also recently awarded for its inclusive benefits program, which offers an array of employee benefits & total rewards, including:

• maternity and parental leave top-up of 100% of salary for up to 12 weeks for birth mothers;

• surrogacy and adoption benefits with a $20,000 lifetime maximum;

• an expansive list of eligible child care/elder care expenses;

• “mix and match” flexible benefits options, and;

• an increased maximum for mental-health practitioners to $5,000 per benefit year with no deductible.

The bank's benefits package is centred around a "culture of care" to support colleagues to build their families, provide access to mental health resources and select coverage options based on their personal needs.

A commitment to diversity and inclusion

TD has embedded diversity and inclusion in its culture and continuously engages its diverse employees to better understand and enhance their experience working for the bank.

“In order for us to be the better bank at TD, we need the best people. That's why we're committed to fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion, while helping our colleagues grow in their roles and realize their career aspirations,” says Ellison. “It helps strengthen our business to recruit individuals that come from a wide array of experiences, backgrounds and abilities.”

TD is hiring for a number of different types of roles in a number of business lines, whether it's branch banking, commercial and small business banking, wealth management or mobile mortgage specialists. The bank is looking for individuals who are ready to make a difference in the lives of customers and give back to local communities – all while continuing to build a rewarding and fulfilling career.

Begin your future with TD at jobs.td.com.

Local content creators wanted, so bring your story to life with this $10K grant

STORYHIVE Voices is back

UPDATE: STORYHIVE Voices intake deadline has been extended to midnight PT on May 11, 2023, to welcome in even more amazing community stories. Make sure to send in your application before then for your chance to receive $10,000 in funding.

If you're a first-time or emerging content creator in B.C. or Alberta who has always wanted to share your passion with your community, now's your chance. Level up your content creation journey with TELUS STORYHIVE Voices 3.0. Intake is open now until May 2, 2023.

The search is on for local online creators of all backgrounds to be part of TELUS STORYHIVE's supportive community, a creative hub to grow your impact and your audience, and develop your skills. The Voices program welcomes aspiring YouTube, TikTok or Instagram creators, and no experience is necessary. You could gain access to more than one million new viewers on TELUS Optik TV.

STORYHIVE is encouraging creators to submit their content ideas. Whether it’s a lifestyle show, a how-to-series, visual podcasts or a digital short, the possibilities are endless. They are offering $10,000 in production funding, customized online training sessions, access to a community of support and distribution of your project on TELUS Optik TV and online channels for up to 100 selected applicants across B.C. and Alberta.

Kelowna's music lessons website founder, Kris Kolesnikoff, received the STORYHIVE Voices 2.0 grant and created Music for All, a 10-part instructional series aimed at giving viewers a crash course on how to play guitar. He teaches the series, which features his partner, Karliana DeWolff, and covers topics from picking up a guitar for the first time to writing your first song.

“The series runs through brief overviews on parts of the guitar, chords, scales, strumming, harmony, music theory and song construction," he says. "At the end, for an example, we perform an original composition we wrote for the series; it's about Kelowna and that special feeling you feel in the valley during sunset, when the light hits just right."

The duo made the series to provide local beginner musicians easy access to free lessons, who may not have the means for taking in-person lessons. "We also wanted to create some awareness of my project, LectureOwl.com, a site where people can take live online music lessons, with high-level instructors," Kolesnikoff says.

The pair believes it's important to give back to the community that's been so good to it. "Kelowna has a thriving arts community. However, we found that in comparison to bigger centres like Vancouver, our musicians per capita were much lower, so this was our way of providing a little bit of support to future musicians," Kolesnikoff says.

Audrey Kiss, STORYHIVE territory manager says, “One goal with all STORYHIVE programs is to showcase that content creators don’t need to be from the big cities to create meaningful content."

The support creators receive is comprehensive and invaluable, not only for their project, but for how they see themselves as artists. Each project recipient is matched with their own STORYHIVE project manager to support them along the way.

"The support of our project manager, Audrey Kiss, really stood out for me," Kolesnikoff says. "Her feedback and guidance were instrumental in providing the best quality product possible. She helped a lot with covering topics like broadcast standards, proper export formats for both video and audio, setting up production, organizing and planning, legal aspects of production, lighting and shooting.

"Also, the support we had covering the legal aspects of production will help with future projects. From a legal standpoint, the document support and advice we received will help set us up for success.

"Since working on the STORYHIVE project, I am much more confident with creating content as a whole. I feel like I understand the process to a much greater extent, and editing ten episodes really teaches respect for the high-level expertise that goes into making a regular TV series.

"STORYHIVE has been completely respectful of our individual artistic voice. There wasn't any micro-management or discussions on changing the direction of the project; they let us produce content in our own unique way."

He shares his advice for future STORYHIVE applicants: "The biggest focus of this program is community, and you should really think about how your project can be beneficial to your community. How through your project you can either educate, uplift, or give back."

Says Kiss: "We're so proud we have been able to grow this program aimed at new and emerging content creators interested in user-generated content styles over the last two years.

“Join us as we celebrate our third TELUS STORYHIVE Voices intake. We’re looking forward to sharing the stories of communities across B.C. and Alberta, and can’t wait to hear from the people of the Okanagan.”

Your passion. Your community. STORYHIVE Voices 3.0 application portal opened April 4, 2023. Apply at STORYHIVE.com/voices before midnight PDT on May 2, 2023.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

There are many benefits to having a lawn, and here are ways to keep it healthy

Grow that grass, everyone!

The benefits of having a lawn are plentiful.

So instead of covering up the front of your home with rocks or artificial turf, let the green grass grow and make life better for everyone. Here are four reasons why having a lawn can help both your health and the environment:

1. Your lawn acts as a natural air conditioner for your home and the planet. Did you know your lawn is 10 degrees cooler that your soil? Or that lawns can be 30 degrees cooler than asphalt, artificial grass and concrete? In many hot countries you see people watering their driveways, paths and sidewalks to cool their environment. Homes with lawns are a lot cooler and need less air conditioning than those that do not have one.

2. Lawns have natural noise reduction. Having grass in front of your house can reduce neighbourhood noise by eight to 10 decibels by absorbing and deflecting sound.

3. Lawns improve air quality in homes and in the environment by absorbing carbon dioxide and impurities and producing clean oxygen.

4. Lawns can improve curb appeal and therefore improve your home’s value.

More good news for the environment is you do not need to use environmentally unfriendly chemicals to make your lawn the envy of everyone in your neighbourhood. Weed Man Lawn Centre in Kamloops takes the natural route to ensure everyone is safe and your lawn is always looking its best.

“With us using a natural herbicide, it’s better for plants, animals and kids versus the harsh chemicals,” Weed Man Kamloops co-owner Dale Anderson says. “We’re also all certified and licensed to spray.”

Anderson says Weed Man is an excellent choice for your lawn care because of its affordability. Its team of professionals will make five to six visits during the season at affordable prices based on your lawn size. If you want only a couple visits or a certain service, they will do that for you. They also offer free consultations.

“We always like to explain different things or what might go on on someone’s lawn and ways they can go about fixing it,” Anderson says. “It’s free. We’ll visit and give our recommendations on what we think, and they can take it from there.”

Here are four ways to keep your lawn looking its best in 2023:

1. Mowing

Mowing promotes new growth and forces the roots to grow deeper and stronger, making a foundation for a thick and healthy lawn. Mowing on the high setting will help protect the roots from drought and aid the lawn in resisting common diseases.

2. Water

Watering your lawn is not as difficult as it seems if you’re not mowing the lawn too short. The truth is it takes the amount of water to fill an empty tuna can. When you put your sprinklers on you, put an empty tuna can down. Once the can is filled, turn off the sprinklers. Do not water your lawn at night, as the water sitting on the leaf can cause fungal diseases that can spread and kill a lawn rapidly. Instead you should be watering early in the morning, allowing the plant to drink and dry.

3. Feed

Fertilizer is a huge key to having a lush, thick, heathy lawn that can resist the damage from heat stress and diseases. Weed Man uses a proprietary, slow-release granular formula that reacts within its surroundings. This product feeds the lawn for between eight and 10 weeks.

4. Weed Control

If you are doing steps 1 to 3, the need for weed control should reduce each year. Weed control is necessary to not only to add to the value of your home, but it helps with agriculture. By keeping less weeds from spreading to crops on nearby farms, it means fewer pesticides being used in the production of food consumption for both animals and humans.

For more information about Weed Man Kamloops and the services it offers, visit its website here.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Bloom Finance Company shares how Okanagan seniors can continue living lives to fullest without financial strain

Post-retirement adventure

Retirement should be a time of exploration, excitement and enjoyment. However, without a steady income to support your interests and passions, it can be tricky continuing to pursue them.

It shouldn’t have to be this way, though, and with a reverse mortgage from Bloom Finance Company it doesn’t have to be.

Bloom helps British Columbians aged 55 and older continue to live more financially flexible, flourishing lives by helping them unlock up to 55% of their home’s value, tax-free, all while continuing to live in the homes they love.

For semi-retired Summerland resident, Beverly, staying in her home was at the forefront of her mind back when she was considering Bloom’s reverse mortgage about a year ago now.

“I was really concerned about my home because I love my home, and for me to be able to stay in my beautiful home and no longer have to worry about the monthly mortgage payments, this reverse mortgage has lifted a huge burden off my back.”

Bloom’s reverse mortgage has also allowed her to continue pursuing her passions.

“I wanted to work less hours and I wanted to travel more – those were my goals, as well as being able to help out my family a bit more because four out of my eight grandchildren are elite hockey players, and I know that’s quite an expensive venture,” she says. “With Bloom’s reverse mortgage, I’m able to do all of that.”

Similar to Beverly, Chilliwack-based retiree Len wanted to continue making travel a priority for him and his wife’s post-retirement life, as well as being able to stay in their home.

“The Bloom reverse mortgage means you’re not nickeling and diming yourself. You’re not stuck at home because you’re basically house poor,” he says. “If we want to go down to Mexico for a couple of weeks like we did in November last year, we have the cash to do that. Or if we want to go travelling in the RV, which obviously takes a lot of fuel, we have the freedom to do that, as well.”

Both Beverly and Len can agree that getting a Bloom reverse mortgage was simple and streamlined. In fact, the whole process can take as little as a week.

The first step is getting an estimate on their website, and it only takes seconds.

From there, you’ll speak with a Bloom representative to answer any questions you may have and submit your application. Upon approval, you work with an independent legal advisor who ensures your interests are protected. Lastly, funds are deposited, and you can enjoy the freedom that comes from having that extra financial flexibility.

For more information about Bloom’s reverse mortgages, visit bloomfin.ca.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

De-Loops Designated Drivers will get you home safe

Designated driver service

Tanya Dormuth is passionate about helping people get home safely.

The Kamloops business owner, who works in healthcare during the day, owns and operates De-Loops Designated Drivers, a new business in the city that provides rides for those who want to have a drink but do not want to drive afterward.

“I’ve always had a passion for taking care of people and making sure their needs are met,” says Dormuth, who opened her business last summer. She now has a team of drivers who not only get people home safely but also get their vehicles home after a night out.

In addition to her many years in health care, Dormuth has plenty of experience as a designated driver, having done it for the last six years working for another company that provided the service.

“In fact, I’ve always been the designated driver (for friends and family) because I don’t drink,” she says. “I have always done it.”

She says she originally decided to work as a designated driver because of the astronomical statistics of drinking and driving deaths and accidents. As a mom of three she is concerned that people make it home safe after a night out.

“People need to get home safely.”

De-Loops Designated Drivers is available seven days a week, but Sundays through Tuesdays the service must be pre-arranged before 7 p.m. On Wednesdays and Thursdays, the service operates between 4 p.m. and 1 a.m. and on Fridays and Saturdays between 4 p.m. and 3 a.m.

The cost is comparable with taxi service but, as Dormuth points out, it is cheaper because the service is only needed for one way.

Dormuth said typically (on days when the service does not need to be pre-arranged), a client will call her when ready and she and a co-driver will pick them up. She will then drive the client, in the client’s vehicle, home. The co-driver will follow.

The service allows those heading out for the evening to drive to their event and not worry about getting home safely.

Like Dormuth, all her drivers are well-trained and are professionals in their day jobs. Two are professional drivers, two work for the local school district and one works in health care.

“I could not do this without my great team," she says of the men and women who work for her.

De-Loops Designated Drivers has a social media presence, with a Facebook page and a website (deloops.ca). It can be reached through both, as well as through its telephone number, 250 320-6963.

The company also has posters up throughout Kamloops with a QR code that can be used to access the contact number for De-Loops Designated Drivers.

So next time you are out for the night and have had a few drinks, keep your keys in your pocket and call De-Loops designated drivers.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Brentwood College School sets global standard for transformative learning for life

Leading-edge education

As parents, we strive to ensure our children have access to the best resources and opportunities. But what if selecting the right secondary school was ultimately based on your child's choice?

Student choice is a unique facet of the culture at Brentwood College School, serves as a deciding factor in who attends, and acts as the cornerstone of its philosophy: “Where students choose to be.” This strategy creates a supportive community of students from more than 50 countries who gain the independence and skills to succeed in the post-secondary world.

A Brentwood education presents a comprehensive approach, with an unyielding dedication to prepare students academically while also meeting their social and emotional needs, helping them become well-rounded adults.

Founded in 1923, Brentwood College School has worked diligently to position itself as a leading-edge institute of international significance, with a globally minded outlook that others look to for knowledge and best practices.

As a progressive co-educational boarding school for Grades 8 to 12, prospective students are drawn to the school's innovative approach and university prep programs, alongside the positive learning environment and breathtaking setting, with impressive ocean views and immediate access to nature.

A location that inspires learning

Sheltered on the pristine Vancouver Island coastline, Brentwood's impressive 90-acre oceanfront campus is located in Mill Bay. Its stunning location matches its international reputation and educational profile as one of the best boarding schools in Canada—and the world.

The school embeds exceptional learning opportunities that take full advantage of its breathtaking natural venue, incorporating rich outdoor experiences to help produce broad-minded individuals.

“Our location builds on our mission of expanding hearts and minds,” says Crystal Harvey, associate director of admissions. “When we look at developing kids and fostering growth and wellness, we want our graduates to leave the campus with that mindset.

“Access to the beachfront enhances our biology program. They get to experience whale watching first-hand and can observe seals, blue herons and other wild animals right off the Brentwood docks. We connect with the Ministry of Fisheries and Oceans around neighbouring salmon spawning streams to enhance hands-on student learning and a sense of land stewardship.

“The surrounding forested lands provide an opportunity for students to examine resource management and take a deep dive into studying ecosystems. It’s experiential learning within our backyard without having to plan a field trip—it can just happen.”

Collaborative and varied workspace

Brentwood architecture and facility design provides students and teachers with the space to move from traditional, siloed classrooms into break-out work spaces, which better facilitate student-centred learning.

“Within our transformational place of learning, we look at the opportunity for students to gain knowledge from each other and from their shared experiences,” explains Harvey. “It is of great value for students to collaborate in workspaces where they can have conversations, share ideas, challenge each other and grow.”

Unmatched facilities

West Coast modern architecture supports Brentwood’s progressive education model. Its new flagship academics building, The Centre for Innovation and Learning (set for completion in September 2024), features next-level design modelled after research into world-leading university campuses.

“The new academics building is about meeting the combined challenge posed by disruptive technology, changing parenting styles, and unprecedented global competition,” reveals Harvey. “It will provide opportunity for mentorship, growth, and development, and foster a learning community versus a traditional classroom space.”

The most recent campus asset to be completed prior to the current project is the world-class 60,000 square-foot Eldon and Anne Foote Athletic Centre, which takes a “whole person” approach to learning a sport, also fostering a lifelong commitment to fitness and wellness. That same holistic philosophy permeates every aspect of the Brentwood experience and is concretely expressed in the balanced timetable that gives their proprietary Tripartite Program of academics, athletics and arts clear structure each day.

“The space supports our competitive and non-competitive athletic programs, while the T. Gil Bunch Centre for the Performing Arts includes the 431-seat George Killy Theatre—with an impressive professional stage,” says Harvey.

"Both centres are built and maintained at a level of professionalism that gives students value and that feeling of importance for whatever they're working towards."

When students participate in overall wellness activities, a craving for healthy food is more prevalent. "The oceanfront dining hall (Art and Mary Jane Crooks Hall), with award-winning head chef Morgan Milward, brings our community and Brentwood family together over meals."

Harvey reflects on the campus facilities and strategic planning moving forward.

"Our buildings look out towards the ocean and the world beyond, rather than inward, on ourselves. I think that connects back to our motto: De Manu In Manum (from hand to hand). We pass the torch, looking beyond ourselves and toward what we can give to others."

For more information, visit brentwood.ca/info.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Public Francophone schools in Penticton, Kamloops and Kelowna offer education entirely in French

Francophone learning pros

Whether it’s being eligible for careers in government, having a deeper connection to Canadian Francophone culture, or simply being able to communicate in one’s mother tongue at home or abroad, receiving an education in French can open many doors, both in and outside the province.

Here in B.C., there are several ways for your children to receive an education in French. However, if you want to keep them in public school, the two main options are either enrolling them in a French-language school or registering them in a French immersion program.

Deciding which option is the best fit for your family can be tricky. Both, of course, involve learning in French. Still, it’s important to know how the two are different from one another.

One of the key advantages of a Francophone school is that French is taught as a first language, with all teaching taking place in French, says Bertrand Dupain, superintendent at B.C.’s French school board, the Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique, or CSF.

The CSF, also known as School District 93, is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing high-quality, free kindergarten through Grade 12 education to more than 6,200 students across B.C., following the same curriculum as the rest of the province.

Its mission is to inspire students by submerging them in Francophone culture, all while ensuring they acquire the essential skills needed for their futures. It dedicates itself to evolving with students’ various needs and interests, including the fun projects they carry out throughout the school year.

“Graduates from our programs are not only fully bilingual in both languages, but they also emerge with a strong sense of identity and attachment to Francophone culture, as well as to the larger French-speaking community,” Dupain says.

In southeastern B.C., the CSF has eight French-language schools, three of which are the elementary and secondary schools École de l'Anse-au-sable in Kelowna, École Collines D’or in Kamloops and École Entre-Lacs in Penticton.

“It is very important for our students to see the many opportunities that come with speaking French,” Dupain says. “When presented with a rich and diverse representation of the different studies or occupations that exist in French in their community, in the province, in Canada and in the world, our students feel involved and motivated by the multiple possibilities offered.”

Enrolling your children in one of the CSF’s schools also has its own advantages for you as a parent or guardian. “Studying at the CSF allows parents to become part of a close-knit community and allows their children to develop in a safe, innovative and inclusive environment,” Dupain says.

“High-quality education with personalized services for each student and family, free bus transportation and English as a First and Second Language courses are all benefits highly valued by parents.”

Additionally, students who graduate from one of the CSF’s schools leave with two diplomas: B.C.’s anglophone diploma, the Dogwood, and B.C’s Francophone high school diploma, the Cornouiller, which makes them more competitive in their post-secondary and job applications.

As is the case with all of the CSF’s schools, students must be considered “rights holders” to attend. This means their parents must be Canadian citizens with a Francophone background or otherwise meet the criteria under Section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

There are a few nuances to this, however, so be sure to check out the CSF’s admission requirements if you are interested in enrolling.

For more information about the CSF’s schools, visit frenchlanguageschoolsbritishcolumbia.ca.

N’attendez plus, inscrivez-votre enfant dès maintenant dans une des écoles du CSF.

This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

Summer Crew 2.0 is looking for new and emerging content creators in B.C. and Alberta

Livestream local stories

It’s time to go live and bring your community’s unique stories to life this summer by livestreaming on TELUS Optik TV and STORYHIVE’s online platforms.

If you’re a new or emerging content creator, the opportunity for your crew of two to kickstart your online presence and livestream your community is here. Through the 2023 TELUS STORYHIVE Summer Crew 2.0 program, you could be the face of your own show, hosting and interviewing, and driving your online presence. No experience is required.

If you and a friend/co-creator live in Kamloops, Kelowna, Penticton, Vernon or any other eligible B.C. or Alberta community, apply together for the chance to be one of 14 crews from different regions to participate in an intensive 14-week program. You can also apply individually and STORYHIVE will pair you up with another content creator.

If you’re selected, your crew will receive microgrants, equipment as well as training to develop your interview skills and gain real-world experience with livestreaming technology.

New this year, STORYHIVE is supplying teams with robust video editing software and access to a portal from which creators can edit their content.

This concentrated creative process gives you the chance to showcase your passion for your community through storytelling and reporting, just as it did for STORYHIVE 2022 Summer Crew alumni Robb O’Day and Rylan Kinnin, both freshly armed with experience in entertainment, podcasting and hosting.

“I really wanted to push myself as a content creator, and with Rylan by my side, we would do anything we put our minds to,” shares O’Day, when asked about his motivation to apply for the program. “We tend to focus on the arts community in our region, trying to help the hidden talent here in the Okanagan.”

Both O’Day and Kinnin share that the experience with STORYHIVE Summer Crew 2022 has made an incredible impact in their lives and careers. Kinnin says, “It’s been a journey and a half! Having the funding and support to express a large new direction of creative ideas and thinking has significantly helped shape and support our passion for community engagement.”

O’Day couldn’t agree more. “STORYHIVE has changed my life in so many ways, I don’t honestly know where to begin. My biggest takeaway from the program is that you can really achieve anything you put your mind to. STORYHIVE gave me the opportunity to make some change, whether it be small, in our region and help many aspiring artists show their work to a larger audience.”

O’Day and Kinnin were the duo that made up Kelowna, Crew 7 from last year and worked together to create the in-depth series, Unique Minds of the Okanagan. Kinnin says his and O’Day’s main goal was to “share and promote local artists and their work with videos and streams about them.”

“Summer Crew and STORYHIVE have sent me in a direction I never thought would happen,” O’Day says. “Since our first project, A New Beginning, we've continued to make connections and projects that have greatly impacted the local scene.” He says that the team has now branched into hosting live events and putting on music festivals locally. They also created a YouTube channel dedicated to local paranormal investigations called Broken Cross Paranormal.

“With the knowledge and skills acquired through STORYHIVE, we’ve continued to create content and will continue to make a change in our local arts community.”

Both O’Day and Kinnin are looking forward to seeing fellow Okanagan creators join the STORYHIVE Summer Crew community and have some advice to share.

“Creating content is meant to be enjoyable and uplifting; don’t make it all business or you’ll lose sight of what matters. Be prepared and always have a backup plan,” O’Day says.

Kinnin says, “The team and support behind Summer Crew are always friendly and helpful and very understanding of hiccups and technical problems.”

Your city. Your coverage. No experience necessary to apply. Intake is open Feb. 15. Apply at storyhive.com/summercrew by March 24, 2023.


This article is written by or on behalf of the sponsoring client and does not necessarily reflect the views of Castanet.

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