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Guest Volunters

Margaret Hansen: 

B.L.A.S.T. Cordinator since inception

Stroke Survivors Building Life After Stroke Together are fortunate to have Margaret come on board with us. She also facilitaed the previous camp hosted by SRABC with Phylis Delaney and for 25 years. It was canelled in 2005 and the huge loss of the event prompted the online group TurtleTalk in 2009.

Margaret's dedication to stroke recovery is a huge asset. Her expertise and experience is invaluable. We are worry free with Margaret at the helm and sure to have a BLAST.

Advance Care Planning team coming to BLAST 2016

Sue and Harriet will be joining  us
     Saturday, March 26th, 2016.

At 11  am they will give a presentation followed by an open discussion after lunch.  Stroke Survivors know how quickly life can change. It's a gift to your family and friends to be aware of your wishes. It's your life and your choice.

Tracy Lynch  Chair Yoga

    Tracy originally came to yoga to help with chronic lower back and hip pain. Now pain free, she has been practicing yoga for over 20 years and is trained and certified in many forms of therapeutic yoga including Hatha, Yin, Seniors, Restorative and Chair yoga.  

“I believe in the healing ability of yoga to awaken our energy through the breath, while relaxing and strengthening both the mind and body. My aim is to help students create a healthier, happier and more balanced life through yoga one breath at a time.” 

Tracy has a BA in Recreation and is completing a Post Baccalaureate Diploma in Gerontology.



Katharine Cheung is currently an MSc candidate in the Neuroscience program at UBC. She completed her undergraduate degree at Queen’s University where she graduated with an Honors degree in Life Sciences. 


           Sonia Brodie MSc


Will be a huge asset for BLAST 2014.  She has already participated in our summer fundraiser with Katherine.


Academics aside, SoniaI used to work summer camps when she was younger, with lots of experience leading "outdoorsy"-type activities., as well as activities such as arts and crafts.  


Sonia is a certified canoe instructor, which might be something to consider in the future. She is a welcome addition to our BLAST family.  

Her research leans toward stroke recovery. Hopefully she will enjoy her weekend with BLAST Turtles.



Saturday Massage Coordinator

Colleen has been with BLAST since inception (2011) and scores high in our feedback. She arrives Saturday morning with a team of practitioners to offer a variety of massage techniques to BLAST campers.  One of my favorite memories is seeing people float out of the building in bliss after receiving their treatment. The smiling faces were infectious.


Colleen Fraser

Colleen Fraser is one of the developers of Whistler Healing Arts and a co founder and Education trainer of Vida Spas. For over twenty years she has been an innovator and leader in developing this embodied and integrated approach to health.

After studying Kinesiology and nutritional sciences at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, BC, Colleen Fraser continued her education at the West Coast College of Massage Therapy. Upon completeing her exams to become a registered massage therapist, Colleen furthered her knowledge in holistic health by continuing studies in Eastern ayurvedic medicine and western herbology to become an ayurvedic health practitioner.


Judy Bjornson         SureFeet

Judy is a Balance and Mobility Specialist and co-owns SureFeet. SureFeet is a program that focuses on elevating the three internal balance systems that naturally decline as people age. They are the vestibular, visual and somatosensory systems. The program also focuses on fall prevention, strength, balance, mobility, gait pattern enhancement and cognitive exercises to enhance neuroplasticity. The program has been widely recognized and successful. She is also a WaterART Master Trainer residing in North Vancouver B.C. Canada. Her education with WaterART has given her the abilities to be an Aquatic Fitness Instructor, Aquatic Personal Trainer, Aquatic Rehabilitation Specialist; as well, she has gained the knowledge and skills to teach Arthritis classes, Seniors and Special populations, Neurological and Common Movement Disorders, Post Operative Joint Recovery, Stroke Recovery, Parkinsons and M.S. classes
. Judy is passionate about her work and helping others live healthier and happier lives.



West Coast Heritage Park Railway

Mini-rail tour and tea with home baking


Donna Forchuk, 

Lynn and Ernie Ledgerwood


These wonderful people leave our BLAST campers feeling like royalty. There was more talk about the fine china yummy baking than the museum.



Diane Lego  Lifeguard 

            Pool Coordinator


Diane and Therapy dog Potter, came as our Lifeguard BLAST 2011. The following year she had a team including Judy Bjornson -aqua rehab and Lise Chevalier -aquasize. Plus another Lifeguard Carrie,  allowing Diane to get in the pool.



                                            Volunteer adopted to our BLAST family

Brent Page    -  BLAST 2011 to present

Conductive Education Manager for March of Dimes

 After Easter 2011 Brent became an integral persona for BLAST. He arranged to decrease camper fees by $50 form the Rock for Dimes benefit.


Every year he has brought a colleague from March of Dimes Canada to come have a BLAST. 2012 Sue Jones from Calgary and Keith Rashid from Toronto in 2013 who is returning in 2014 with his daughter Alyssa.


Brent came to us from Ontario our first year. Fortunately he relocated to Vancouver in summer. He will be a great asset for the West Coast as well as BLAST. We were lucky to adopt him.


His positive energy and support is a joy to have with us. We have been bouncing ideas back and forth ever since. Thanks for joining our family.


Judy Bjornson         SureFeet 

with Susan Bock Smith


Judy has also become a returning member of the family. In 2014 she is coming with her partner Susan Bock Smith. They will be doing  aqua rehab and  "Better Balance" (new compant name) class.


Steadyfeet     nognz Advisory Board Member

BLAST 2012  Saturday April 7th. 


Judy Bjornson is a certified B.C. fitness coach, personal trainer, Aquatic 

Rehabilitation Therapist, and Balance and Mobility Therapist. She specializes in working with seniors and clients with neurological and common movement disorders. She has completed the FallProof Balance and Mobility Instructors course offered by Fullerton University in California. Since that time, she has worked in partnership with Vancouver Coastal Health teaching balance and mobility, sensory training, postural stability, strength and flexibility for seniors all across Vancouver. 


In 2011, Judy ran 14 steady feet classes. in North Vancouver



Volunteers who attended BLAST in the past


Dr. Justin Davis
Coming Saturday 2012 with Brain Games and memory workshop

Unfortunately, he cannot make it 2014, but we have. a quite a few Nognz games to play.

 Located in West Vancouver
Brain training games

Watch on YouTube
Nognz Blog
Ask Dr JD



Dr Jennifer Yao     Q & A  session BLAST 2012

Brainstreams.ca videos 

     Strokes,  Healthy Brain and Healing Brain


Dr Jennifer Yao is a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist.  She is a prominent figure in the stroke community and a perfect fit for BLAST. We are pleased to have her join us in 2012 for an afternoon question period. We're crossing our fingers for the possibility of a more lengthy stay to feel the magic we hope to reproduce.


Update: Dr. Yao will most likely be up for 2 days and has offered to speak on other topics.  Let us know what you would like to hear about. ie Brain Plasticity, Current evidence in stroke recovery, Rehab and reintegration, etc.


Dr Yao is also the medical manager of the GF Strong acquired brain injury program. She presented the Rehabilitation & Reintegration service delivery framework for BC Stroke Strategy. It is an honor to welcome her to the  BLAST 2012 family of stroke survivors "Building Life After Stroke Together" 







Nelly Ning Tai  -  UBC Research Coordinator 

2011 -  Aging, mobility and cognitive function Lab

2012 -  Vascular cognitive impairment Study


 Focus on defining the role of exercise to promote healthy ageing

and prevent cognitive and functional decline among seniors


Nelly leads the morning exercise and radiates our focus on fun.

She has also offered to help fundraise for BLAST. A connection for potential volunteers wanting to peer through the looking glass and experience real life after stroke will also be beneficial for the future of stroke recovery.





              Anne Wittig       Blast 2011 and 2012

          Conductive Education (CE). 


One of the main aims for CE is to teach the Stroke survivor the skills that can be applied into their daily life. CE helps the individual to become more independent from equipment and people, by teaching ways to include the affected side rather then replacing it through expensive equipment.


CE claims to not only look at the disability but also at the whole person. A lot of tasks during the program are physical orientated but with each one of those tasks, CE works also on social, emotional, personal and cognitive skills. For example we are working on correct weight bearing tasks that also helps with confidence to put weight onto the effected side. This would work cognitively on increasing the awareness of symmetry of movements and on personal skills like dressing.


CE is traditionally carried out in groups. Those are a great facilitator of boosting confidence and exchange experience. It is ensured that each member of the group works at their level, as the tasks are build up or broken down for each individual, to challenge all.








Category: BLAST | Added by: TurtleTalk (2011-Aug-14)
Views: 5476 | Comments: 9 | Rating: 0.0/0
Total comments: 9
0 Spam
9 I am willing to help out in any way I can.  
Jim Walmsley- I was #10, anonymus. biggrin

0 Spam
7 I am willing to help out in any way I can.  
I am a stroke survivor; I will help any way I can.

0 Spam
8 TurtleTalk  
Great! Please fill http://turtletalk.ca/index/0-3 and tell me more about yourself and how to contact you

0 Spam
5 TurtleTalk  
We have filled volunteer positions for BLAST 2012. However, you are welcome as a paying camper $225. We have a few volunteers that pay their fees to come as a camper. We have several stroke survivors that donate their time, money, and goods

1 Spam
3 shahram  
i am interested join you as a volunteer

0 Spam
6 TurtleTalk  
Go to the home page and click register now

1 Spam
2 shahram  
[color=purple] i am interested join you as a volunteer . my cell number is 7788668795 . shahram delfanazari

0 Spam
4 TurtleTalk  
I sent you an email. I did see this until late. Sorry, I'll try tomorrow afternoon

1 Spam
1 Karel Ley  
Wow! The list is impressive but don't lose the fun factor. It will be great to experience the expertise these folks have in addition to the usual camp activities including games, dance, funny money casino and auction, sing-alongs around the fire and an outing. Can't wait.

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