Presidents Message – January 2021

January 1, 2021

Happy New Year to our Edgemont Community!

You and your fellow Edgemont residents are reading this when the New Year celebrations are over and 2021 has begun in hope and optimism. Many of us may have already begun the soon to be guilt laden albatross of an exercise program. Take heart in the words of the inimitable Winston Churchill “I get all the exercise I need acting as pallbearer for all my dear friends who exercise”. 2020’s short term reactions to a pandemic have given way to long term solutions and, regardless of the weather right now, Spring is around the corner! Probably in Newfoundland, though!

Will you indulge me to first consider our neighbours and friends who were most deeply affected by COVID-19? At the turn of the year where we have so many opportunities, let’s start by being kind to one another. The calamity endured through 2020 has given us all a renewed appreciation of the simple human pleasures of just being together and enjoying one another’s company and, as difficult as 2020 was, let’s be thankful that we have gotten through with some semblance of elan, and now have the promise of a new direction ahead of us.

There is an aviation mantra, typically used during a crisis, that goes like this; ‘Aviate, Navigate, Communicate’. It is meant to cut through the chaos, when everything happens at once, and helps to clearly lay out the priorities for pilots to get the craft flying straight and level, set an optimal course to accomplish the mission safely, and to THEN inform everyone, on board and on the ground, what happened and what the next steps are.

Reflecting on 2020 there were, as always, milestones achieved and challenges overcome and, just like the above saying, many actions were taken by your excellent ECA Board and the dedicated staff of the Edgemont Community Centre which prioritized the steps forward. The defining effect of 2020 on the ECA operations was, of course, the COVID-19 response. The ECC went from total closure to cautious re-opening, then back to partial closure and again peeking out to re-opening. Ground Hog Day might be a pretty good script. Suddenly – we couldn’t meet face to face – So – let’s all become (more or less) proficient at using Zoom to communicate! Electronic business meetings with the Board, the Board Committees, the Regular Monthly Board meetings, even an online AGM allowed ECA to stumble forward towards the ECA mission to keep ECA up and running. Probably like many of your own 2020 experiences, I have yet to meet, in person, some of the awesome new Directors on our Board! What a testament to the adaptability all of us developed!  In 2019 I believe none of us could point to a particular pocket or place where we ALWAYS keep a facemask, “Just in case”.  Now we do. One of the phrases we lost last year was “I wonder if they’re home?” Yeah, they were home but – it didn’t matter, did it? They were on another virtual meeting and couldn’t come to the door, anyway.

Originally it seemed that the usual thing to do for this New Year’s message was list the accomplishments of 2020. This is the dodge of many an editor when faced with a publishing deadline.  Most of these items have, however, already been the subject of previous messages. In fact, one of the key reasons to mention the aviation mantra is to elaborate on the ‘communication’ part.  Since the world took a turn 90 degrees to the ecliptic last March, the ECA Board and staff have been involved in an ongoing series of new initiatives, inevitably with many course corrections. All of these issues and situations have arisen and been dealt with in the monthly ECA Board of Directors meetings. Yet – because these meetings were virtual (requiring a log in), and because we were just coming to grips with the new virtual world, not many Edgemont residents have been involved in these meetings. Following the aviation analogy, the ECA is more or less in level flight, we have agreed upon a course, and now we want to communicate. If you would like to join us for our monthly ECA Board meeting, please email a request to secretary@edgemont.ab.ca and you will be sent a Zoom invitation. Usually, the regular ECA Board Meeting is attended by the 15 Directors, some of the ECA membership, Edgemont residents, Representatives of the many Schools in the Edgemont catchment area, our awesome volunteers, Ward 4, Calgary Edgemont and Calgary Nose Hill representatives, and sometimes our Calgary Police Service Liaison Officer. As always, the City is ably represented by Edgemont’s NPC rep Heather Gibbons.

The ECA Board meetings have full agendas so there is not much chatting time, but if you have an interest in Edgemont, the meetings certainly warrant a look-see. Please remember, all the Directors emails are always available in the contacts section of the Inside Edgemont Monthly Newsletter. During a meeting you can leave a comment or ask a question in the Zoom ‘chat’ window. If we cannot get to your question in the meeting, it can be followed up afterwards. Any item you may wish to be considered for an upcoming meeting can be addressed to the same email: secretary@edgemont.ab.ca. The ECA is a busy place, even during COVID. Your first steps for increased involvement may well be attending a virtual meeting. The ECA Board looks forward to meeting with you.