Letters: Course helps immigrants; Opportunity provides hope; Failure hinders job creation

Course helps immigrants

We know from our friends who have taken the Adult Basic Education (ABE) course at Vancouver Island University that it is a very helpful program for pronunciation and comprehension of English [“VIU monitors adult education,” September 13].

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We are new immigrants from China who live in Powell River now and have difficulty conversing in English with local people at work and in life. We cannot communicate with our workmates, neighbours and the teachers of our kids.

We have lots of ideas and plans, but we can do nothing without English. Also, as we have immigrated to Canada, we would like more knowledge about Canada, such as the history, geography and culture, so we urgently need to improve our English.

Many immigrants from Asia and other countries have benefited from ABE. For example, a student from Colombia translated and published her own book.

We appeal for a free ABE course again.

SuYan Cen
Michigan Avenue
Rita Hou
Yew Street
Xiao Yan Li
Willingdon Avenue


Language empowers independence

By enrolling in the Integral English Continuing Education course at Vancouver Island University, I know I am investing in my future [“VIU monitors adult education,” September 13].

This empowers me to learn in many ways and have the confidence to dialogue with my husband, family doctor and neighbours, write job applications, read about my rights and the law and improve my independence of choice.

I immigrated to Canada from China in 2016. I am happily married to my Canadian husband, Lorne Salisbury. We settled in Powell River and enjoy the community very much.

My husband supports me with speaking English every day; there is a lot to learn.

Meeting other people who have English as a second language has given me hope of achieving my goal of fluency in English. I believe this was one of the best investments I have made, but I would like to see free English courses in Adult Basic Education at VIU.

Liming Luo
Gordon Avenue


Opportunity provides hope

I have always dreamed of taking a university-level English course because I have a huge passion for literature and it is my future goal to write a novel [“VIU monitors adult education,” September 13].

The Integral English course at Vancouver Island University will give me a chance to build my confidence in my reading, writing and grammar skills and give me hope in my future goal of being a novelist.

I have always been intrigued with other cultures through my interest in films and literature. This course also gives me the opportunity to enjoy socializing with an accepting, multicultural and like-minded community of people.

I have an intellectual disability called autism. I graduated from Brooks Secondary School in 2012.

My mother, who has always been a part of my education and my stepfather, who has a baccalaureate degree in intercultural studies, are supporting me by taking the Integral English Continuing Education course with me (because the Adult Basic Education course is unavailable in Powell River). They are enjoying it as much or more than I am. It will also give them the opportunity to help me implement the things I am learning in my future goal of writing a novel.

In a nutshell, this course is giving me hope.

Patrick Barclay
Claridge Road


Failure hinders job creation

In reading the column and subsequent letters to the editor regarding the state of Community Futures Powell River [“Counterpoint: Community Futures has room for improvement,” August 2], what surprises me is that there has been no response from Community Futures to the exposure of its weaknesses.

Are the figures in the original column accurate or not? Is the board of Community Futures going to act to improve the situation? It seems they are just keeping their heads down and hoping it will all be forgotten so they can get back to business as usual.

This is not good enough. The lack of response just reinforces the charge that the local Community Futures office is not transparent or accountable to the community.

Where are all the people who should be speaking up on this issue who have known for years about Community Futures’ failure to properly serve the community? I appreciate that we have a local paper willing to expose the issues that matter to the community, but when does the other shoe drop?

Community Futures is sitting on nearly $3 million that could be used to create jobs and businesses.
People need to demand that the board does its job and deals with this very serious problem. Otherwise the board is the problem.

Devon Hanley
Chilco Avenue


Policy requires review

Clearly, the existing federal fisheries policy is not going to sustain local shellfish [“Fisheries officers fine shellfish tourists,” August 30].

Because of huge increases in tourism, rules that worked in years gone by will no longer work. We need to deluge the minister of fisheries with letters pointing out that existing “by the book” conduct no longer protects the shellfish harvest.

Write to minister of fisheries and oceans Dominic LeBlanc, Ottawa, Canada, K1A 0E6, and send a copy to North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney.
Letters still count because every one is counted. Only a couple of minutes, a couple of sentences and a card is needed; stamps are not required.

G. Goudriaan
Marine Avenue

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