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New after-school café for teens

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A local youth pastor and his wife have been listening to the wants of youth group members and have started an after-school coffee shop for teens.

The couple, Francois and Olivia van Aardt, is hoping to have the doors to the Harvest Café opened by the beginning of April.

Francois said the café would be a “safe place” for all teenagers to go after school to hang out with friends or even complete homework.

The transformed classroom at the former Princess Margaret Rose School has a fresh paint job and stage, and will feature sound equipment for open mike nights, and a snack bar.

The opening of the café, however, will be dependent upon some donations, but the couple said it will be self-sustaining once it opens.

It would be nice to see the café utilized once its doors are open.



Brookfield Fire Department receives fine notice


An accidental lapse in renewing its charitable status has Revenue Canada knocking on the doors of the Brookfield Fire Department.

The department received notice recently to pay a $500,000 fine to Revenue Canada by March 21 or face legal action.

While chief Rod Nielsen said the responsibility was “basically 100 per cent mine,” no steps the department has taken has been able to accredit them with that status up to this point.

With volunteer fire departments continuously recruiting volunteers, it could put the area is jeopardy for fire coverage if the department is no longer operational, and that’s not something anyone wants to see.



Young cancer survivor helping others


She may only be 10 years old, but Gay’s River’s Emma Scheel is wise beyond those years.

She was diagnosed with a rare type of kidney cancer at the age of 15 months, and raised about $700 for last year’s Canadian Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event. The young girl did so by collecting donations and selling her creations – magnets, bookmarks and key chains.

She’s at it again this year with the hopes of topping last year’s total, and we applaud her for her small but very mighty efforts to help find cures for the disease.

Her diagnosis may have left her with only one kidney, but Emma is full of heart and determination.

Organizations: Brookfield Fire Department, Revenue Canada, Princess Margaret Rose School Canadian Cancer Society

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