0

Norfolk named Bicycle Friendly Community

Norfolk County has been named a Bicycle Friendly Community by the Share the Road Cycling Coalition.The county was awarded a bronze level community award at the Ontario Bike Summit in Toronto on Monday.Communities that apply for this award are judged in five categories and must show achievements in each one. The categories are engineering, education, encouragement, enforcement, and evaluation and planning.“Each one of our new 2019 Bicycle Friendly Communities has applied to the program in the past and received an honourable mention,” Jamie Stuckless, executive director of Share the Road, said in a media release. “Those communities took the feedback provided by our expert panel of judges, took action on key areas and have now joined the ranks of BFCs in Ontario. Their success is illustrative of the value of the program.”Norfolk has shown achievements through improved area trails, encouraging new businesses to install bike racks for patrons and staff, welcoming bikes on board Ride Norfolk buses, and including “share the road” signage in all planned capital projects.The popular Tour de Norfolk event in the Delhi area draws cyclists from far and wide to the county each year.For more information – including a look at the county’s trail system – visit norfolktourism.ca/cycling. read more

0

UN agency makes contact with refugees stranded by flooding in Chad

Five representatives of the refugees, who are in 12 locations around the village of Bekam, travelled by canoe and on foot with local officials over the weekend to meet staff of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in the village of Bedoumia, about 10 kilometres from Bekam. They also met with officials from CNAR – Chad’s national refugee authority – and the Chadian Red Cross.“This is the first time that we’ve have direct contact with this group of refugees since they crossed over to southern Chad from CAR three weeks ago,” said UNHCR spokesman Ron Redmond in Geneva.The refugees said they fled their villages in northern CAR because of deteriorating security, including attacks by unidentified armed groups and cattle breeders who want to graze animals on their fields, he added.“Relocation of the 2,000 refugees is going to be extremely difficult and may require the use of canoes because Bekam is now an island,” Mr. Redmond said, adding that only one 10-seat canoe is available in the village. “The transfer of the refugees is all the more urgent because they are currently dependent on the generosity of the local villagers in Bekam. Sanitation is also a concern there,” he said.Once transferred from Bekam to Bedoumia by boat, the refugees will be temporarily housed in the Amboko camp, which is already hosting 23,000 people from CAR and is close to its maximum capacity of 27,000.Because of the overcrowding at Amboko, the Chadian Government agreed to the construction of a new camp in the south and UNHCR has proposed a site at Bedamara, about 10 kilometres from Amboko. A UNHCR site planner will travel to Goré this week to begin layout preparations for the new site.There are presently 40,000 to 45,000 refugees from the CAR in southern Chad, UNHCR said. The majority arrived after fleeing a 2003 military coup. In June and July of this year, some 10,000 additional people arrived following clashes between Government forces and unidentified armed groups. read more