Das Schwarze Brett is a German Canadian Magazine for German-speakers on the west coast of Canada and the US. It shares what is going on in the Austrian, German & Swiss communities of new, first, second and third generation Germans.
14 A Century Since... World War I Ended November 11 at the 11th Hour Der Erste Weltkrieg, „the great war“, „la grande guerre“, hat das Bewusstsein der Menschheit nachhaltig verändert. Angesichts der Millionen von Opfern auf den „Flandern Fields“ wurde der Ruf „Nie wieder Krieg“ von dort in die Welt herausgetragen. Bombenkrater, Schützengräben, Soldatenfriedhöfe und Mahnmale für die Gefallenen aus über 50 Ländern prägen noch immer das Bild der Landschaft. Anlässlich des 100. Jahrestages werden im Zeitraum 2014-18 in Flandern bedeutende Gedenkfeiern und Ausstellungen stattfinden. At 11 am on 11 November the fighting stopped on the Western Front. Estimates of fatal casualties for all nationalities resulting from the occupation and fighting around Ypres between 1914 and 1918 were in the region of 600,000. Now, one hundred years later, Flanders invites visitors to remember lives of all those impacted by the conflict – and what better place to do so than Flanders Fields? Numerous museums, events, and exhibitions shed light on the various facets of the Great War: the military operations, trench warfare, political alliances, propaganda, etc. In addition, various art exhibitions offer a truly individual, artistic view of the horrors of WWI. Wherever you go in Flanders Fields, whether by car, by bike, or on foot, you come across the remnants and scars of the Great War. The region is dotted with hundreds of monuments and cemeteries, some of which contain no more than a few graves. Themed walking, biking, and driving tours guide you through this landscape. Other areas were also completely destroyed. The most well-known village is Passchendaele. It was here that in 1917 the Allied army fought for several months in a desperate bid to break the German line. During the battle, the Allied forces lost nearly 300,000 men in capturing this ruined village after advancing over a few miles of shell-blasted mud. They began referring to the village as “Passion-dale”: the valley of suffering. In the neighbouring village you can see the cost of this ‘victory’ in human life: Tyne Cot Cemetery, with almost 12,000 tombstones. Known as Vladslo, in Praetbos forest, this German cemetery is the final resting place of some 25,638 German soldiers. On display at the cemetery is a moving sculpture, The Grieving Parents. Created by Käthe Kollwitz, a major German expressionist artist, out of personal grief and love for her 18-year old son Peter, who was killed in the war. There will be many events throughout 2018 to commerate the final moments of World War I and one of them is an exhibit in Flanders Fields Museum in Ypress to take a closer look at the archeological remains of the war in the Westhoek region. www.inflandersfield.be ©Westcoast German News publishes Das Schwarze Brett 6 times a year
15 German Care Home Has now signed an Agreement with Vancouver Coastal Health Vancouver, BC – Vancouver Coastal Health has signed an agreement with the German Canadian Benevolent Society to rebuild and expand the German Canadian Care Home in South Vancouver. The existing facility will be demolished and replaced with a larger care home with 18 additional beds, for a total of 160-beds, 10 of which will be private pay. “The German Canadian Care Home has provided compassionate care for decades, enriching the lives of its residents through the many services that are provided,” said Vancouver-Fraserview MLA Suzanne Anton. “The new care home will make sure residents continue to receive quality care.” “This is a significant step in meeting the care needs of Vancouver residents,” said Laura Case, Chief Operating Officer, Vancouver Coastal Health. “It will enhance residents’ privacy and the experience of care by offering single rooms, private washrooms, outdoor terraces, and better access for wheelchairs.” The new facility will have several small homes within a single building. This model is known as ‘home and neighbourhood design’ and is considered a best practice in residential care. The German Canadian Benevolent Society envisions the new care home will also provide services to seniors living in the community, which may include adult day care, therapeutic bathing, rehabilitation services, education for informal care givers, and social activities that encourage community interaction and participation. Completion is scheduled for late 2022. Vancouver Coastal Health will provide operational funding for the new facility. The current care home will close in 2018 to prepare for demolition and construction. VCH and the German Canadian Care Home will develop comprehensive transition plans for each resident to allow for a smooth transition to another facility. Wherever possible, residents will be placed in their preferred location. Staff will also be supported during the transition. With the signing of the agreement with the German Canadian Benevolent Society, Vancouver Coastal Health has completed the procurement phase of their Regional Residential Care Rejuvenation project. It follows a rigorous process to replace several hundred beds in residential care centres that no longer fully meet resident needs, and to significantly increase the number of beds in communities that currently don’t have an adequate supply for the population they serve. To date, Vancouver Coastal Health has signed agreements for 943 beds in eight new and expanded facilities over the next six years. VCH, like many health authorities, is planning ahead to meet the complex residential care needs of people living in our region who can no longer live safely at home with support. Vancouver Coastal Health is responsible for the delivery of $3.2 billion in community, hospital and residential care to more than one million people in communities including Richmond, Vancouver, the North Shore, Sunshine Coast, Sea to Sky corridor, Powell River, Bella Bella and Bella Coola. http://www.gcch.ca/our-care-home/redevelopmentproposal/ The existing care facility has been serving the community since 1969. It includes Vancouver’s largest specialcare unit for residents with dementia. The population is ethnically diverse, with 30 percent of the residents of German descent. “Although the home has served the community well for many years, the existing facility is outdated, with long narrow hallways and many double rooms,” said Laura Case. ©Westcoast German News publishes Das Schwarze Brett 6 times a year