All posts by Nadine Riopel

Nadine is a professional facilitator and connector. She is also an enthusiastic member of the Spruce Avenue community, where she lives with her husband and young son.

Determination is crucial for success Inner City High students work towards a better life

Students at Inner City High School, a school for high-risk youth, are self-aware about personal responsibility.

“It’s all on you if you’re going to succeed,” stressed Kirkland, whose cousins suggested he attend the school after he was kicked out of his home in Maskwacis. “You’ve got to be determined. The negative experiences push you to succeed. Everybody has hardships. It’s how you deal with them.” Continue reading Determination is crucial for success Inner City High students work towards a better life

Choosing where to send your child to school Decide what you want for your child’s school experience

My four-year-old son will be entering kindergarten next year and it’s got me thinking about which school he will attend and what I believe about schools.

Schools should act as community hubs, creating relationships between families that endure for years and contribute to neighbourhood resiliency. This is particularly important in inner city neighbourhoods like ours. Continue reading Choosing where to send your child to school Decide what you want for your child’s school experience

Reasons why some homes burn and some don’t Reduce the chances of your house catching fire

In the Fort McMurray wildfires of 2016, some houses burned and others didn’t, even in the same neighbourhoods. According to fire prevention expert Alan Westhaver, this wasn’t purely due to luck. His work with the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction demonstrates reasons for the phenomenon, and it holds lessons on how to keep our homes safer from fire. Continue reading Reasons why some homes burn and some don’t Reduce the chances of your house catching fire

The gift of rescuing each other’s fruit Harvest season is fruitful in more ways than one

As a resident of our mature neighbourhoods, I don’t have to go far to find people with more backyard fruit than they can use. I have access to raspberries, sour cherries, apples, and more. I spend the better part of August and September in a flurry of canning, juicing, freezing, and dehydrating. Continue reading The gift of rescuing each other’s fruit Harvest season is fruitful in more ways than one

PiYo offers the best of pilates and yoga Spruce Avenue Community League offers free classes

The Spruce Avenue Community League board couldn’t believe its luck when local resident Trisha Mitchell offered to teach a six week PiYo LIVE fitness class at the hall—for free.

Starting May 25, Mitchell will teach classes Thursdays from 7-8 pm until June 29. The series of classes are available for anyone who signs up for the six-week course, although Mitchell said she’d like for league members and community residents to try the class. Continue reading PiYo offers the best of pilates and yoga Spruce Avenue Community League offers free classes

How fear can be helpful as a motivator An honest reflection on motherhood and preparedness

The day my pregnancy test read positive, I cried. They were not tears of joy. While this was a planned pregnancy, I was terrified.

Although I had never pictured myself with kids, when my husband and I were dating, we decided to have a family.

But I was scared. Not of pregnancy and labour, although they were pretty unpleasant. I was afraid of the transformational, irrevocable life change everyone kept talking about. I was in my mid-thirties, well into my professional career and personal development. I wasn’t interested in being totally “transformed”.

Continue reading How fear can be helpful as a motivator An honest reflection on motherhood and preparedness