Andrew Smith

Andrew Smith

Lagimodière constituency report

Andrew Smith is the PC MLA for Lagimodière.

Recent articles of Andrew Smith

Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit contest returns

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Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit contest returns

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Yesterday at 9:31 AM CST

The Christmas season is once again upon us, one of best times of the year! It is also time for our second annual Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit Award contest. Once again I will be showcasing the best of our community’s Christmas decorating efforts. Last year there were so many outstanding Christmas displays, which I am proud to say were right here in our own neighbourhood.

Throughout the month of December, the best Christmas display home, and two runners-up, will be chosen, and awarded for their efforts. As we did last year, a panel of judges, each representative of the various sections of our community, will assess every entry. Over the next four weeks, teams of volunteers will be out scouting for Christmas display houses, in search of local contestants. A grand prize will be issued, as well as two runner-up prizes, and all three will have a picture of their Christmas House featured in our next Free Press Community Review East column.

I encourage you to take the time to explore our scenic community this month, and take in the artistic beauty of the wonderfully decorated Christmas homes, whether it be by a walk, or a drive through Island Lakes, Royalwood, Sage Creek, Bonavista, and Ramblewood. If you are interested in submitting your Christmas decorated exterior, or see any festive homes in the neighbourhood that you feel should be entered into our contest, please send us a picture, as well as the address of the home to lagimodierechristmas@gmail.com

I look forward to seeing what this year’s entries have to offer, so let the contest begin! I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Yesterday at 9:31 AM CST

The Christmas season is once again upon us, one of best times of the year! It is also time for our second annual Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit Award contest. Once again I will be showcasing the best of our community’s Christmas decorating efforts. Last year there were so many outstanding Christmas displays, which I am proud to say were right here in our own neighbourhood.

Throughout the month of December, the best Christmas display home, and two runners-up, will be chosen, and awarded for their efforts. As we did last year, a panel of judges, each representative of the various sections of our community, will assess every entry. Over the next four weeks, teams of volunteers will be out scouting for Christmas display houses, in search of local contestants. A grand prize will be issued, as well as two runner-up prizes, and all three will have a picture of their Christmas House featured in our next Free Press Community Review East column.

I encourage you to take the time to explore our scenic community this month, and take in the artistic beauty of the wonderfully decorated Christmas homes, whether it be by a walk, or a drive through Island Lakes, Royalwood, Sage Creek, Bonavista, and Ramblewood. If you are interested in submitting your Christmas decorated exterior, or see any festive homes in the neighbourhood that you feel should be entered into our contest, please send us a picture, as well as the address of the home to lagimodierechristmas@gmail.com

I look forward to seeing what this year’s entries have to offer, so let the contest begin! I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

Meet Mighty Makenna Stratton

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Meet Mighty Makenna Stratton

Andrew Smith 4 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022

Every year, 48 children are diagnosed with cancer in Manitoba. One of those children lives right here in our community. Makenna Stratton has always been a loving, caring, and energetic child with many friends. In September 2021, she was so happy to be starting Grade 7 at Christ the King School with her peers. After nearly a month in class, however, she caught a flu virus, which, owing to COVID-19 restrictions, kept her home for two weeks.

Following what should have been her recovery, Makenna’s energy failed to return to normal, and she began complaining about headaches and back pain, all of which were completely out of character. On Oct. 20, her mother, Monique, brought her to Urgent Care at Victoria Hospital for a blood panel test, as it was believed Makenna may have been low in iron. Within an hour, they were directed to Children’s Hospital at Health Sciences Centre and given a sealed envelope to submit immediately upon arrival. They were set up in a room in Children’s emergency room with Dr. Stacy Chapman, who solemnly proceeded to tell them something no one wants to hear — Makenna had acute myeloid leukemia, AML.

This form of leukemia is a high-risk, aggressive, blood- and bone-marrow cancer that requires extremely aggressive treatment. She was admitted that day and set up on a clinical trial. Her chemotherapy began on Oct. 22nd. Before her started, she graciously opted to have her long hair shaved off and donated to make wigs for others undergoing chemotherapy. It was then that the reality of the journey began for Makenna and her family.

Her rigorous treatment plan was five cycles of adult-strength chemotherapy, just over 100 doses, and countless blood and platelet transfusions, all of which took six-and-a-half months to complete. She spent 203 days on CK5, the paediatric cancer ward at Children’s Hospital, and 13 days in pediatric intensive care, fighting for her life against a neutropenic infection. During this most difficult period, Makenna’s father, Geoff, continued working full time and running their household while her 15-year-old brother Tyler went to school. It was virtually impossible for them to focus on anything else; as it felt like their world was falling apart, and it would have, if not for the continual support of family, friends, neighbours, co-workers, schools, and their church. Throughout the winter, their doorstep was blessed with daily hot meals and care packages, and their driveway was regularly shovelled. Fundraisers and blood donor clinics were also organized by an extended network of friends and volunteers from many organizations.

Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022

Supplied photo

Monique Stratton, MLA Andrew Smith, Makenna Stratton and Geoff Stratton, photographed at the Manitoba Legislature.

Summer funding is here

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Summer funding is here

Andrew Smith 3 minute read Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2022

We have been blessed with a great summer so far here in our beautiful Lagimodiere community!

I’m sure that many of you have spent time in our neighbourhood, enjoying walks, bike rides, and other summer activities, many of which may have taken place in areas like Seignieurie Park in Island Lakes, or Ron Duhamel Park in Sage Creek. I am happy to share with you that the funding I championed has proven, and will prove to be, very beneficial to these places in our neighbourhood. The Island Lakes Residents’ Group received provincial Building Sustainable Communities funding to support the construction of the much awaited SEIG Pathway, a paved path that now safely connects Seignieurie Park to the main intersection at Lagimodiere Blvd (Hwy 59) and Sage Creek Blvd. The Sage Creek Residents’ Association also very recently received BSC funding for the upcoming Ron Duhamel Park Enhancement Project, which will consist of two elements; one being an accessibility equipment enhancement to the existing playground, and the other a covered deck/space stage for community events.

As the Minister of Sport Culture and Heritage, I was honoured last month to announce the brand new Arts, Culture and Sport in Community Fund. This program allows local arts, culture and sport organizations to innovate and respond to emerging community needs. This is a much-needed relief in our community, after the challenging years many of our organizations have had to endure. As part of the Recover Together 2022 Budget, the initiative to strengthen, invest and build, our government is committing $100 million, over three years, to the ACSC fund, beginning with $34 Million this year alone. This historic $100 million investment will help inspire Manitobans, and foster creativity and innovation in local arts, culture, and sports initiatives, while ensuring that Manitobans have access to high-quality programming and facilities in their communities for generations to come.

Rising costs are affecting all Manitobans, so the addition of this fund will help organizations continue to provide affordable sport, culture and heritage opportunities province wide. The ACSC funding is available in three program types: Large Capital Projects, for requests over $300,000 and up to $5 million; Small Capital Projects and Special Initiatives, for requests up to $300,000; and Community Celebrations for requests up to $5,000.

Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2022

We have been blessed with a great summer so far here in our beautiful Lagimodiere community!

I’m sure that many of you have spent time in our neighbourhood, enjoying walks, bike rides, and other summer activities, many of which may have taken place in areas like Seignieurie Park in Island Lakes, or Ron Duhamel Park in Sage Creek. I am happy to share with you that the funding I championed has proven, and will prove to be, very beneficial to these places in our neighbourhood. The Island Lakes Residents’ Group received provincial Building Sustainable Communities funding to support the construction of the much awaited SEIG Pathway, a paved path that now safely connects Seignieurie Park to the main intersection at Lagimodiere Blvd (Hwy 59) and Sage Creek Blvd. The Sage Creek Residents’ Association also very recently received BSC funding for the upcoming Ron Duhamel Park Enhancement Project, which will consist of two elements; one being an accessibility equipment enhancement to the existing playground, and the other a covered deck/space stage for community events.

As the Minister of Sport Culture and Heritage, I was honoured last month to announce the brand new Arts, Culture and Sport in Community Fund. This program allows local arts, culture and sport organizations to innovate and respond to emerging community needs. This is a much-needed relief in our community, after the challenging years many of our organizations have had to endure. As part of the Recover Together 2022 Budget, the initiative to strengthen, invest and build, our government is committing $100 million, over three years, to the ACSC fund, beginning with $34 Million this year alone. This historic $100 million investment will help inspire Manitobans, and foster creativity and innovation in local arts, culture, and sports initiatives, while ensuring that Manitobans have access to high-quality programming and facilities in their communities for generations to come.

Rising costs are affecting all Manitobans, so the addition of this fund will help organizations continue to provide affordable sport, culture and heritage opportunities province wide. The ACSC funding is available in three program types: Large Capital Projects, for requests over $300,000 and up to $5 million; Small Capital Projects and Special Initiatives, for requests up to $300,000; and Community Celebrations for requests up to $5,000.

Lots of good news for Sage Creek

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Preview

Lots of good news for Sage Creek

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Wednesday, May. 18, 2022

As your MLA, I always put the needs of our community first, and push hard for any programs that can benefit all of us who have made Lagimodiere our home.

I am very happy to say that the results of this advocacy have recently paid off for Sage Creek in the form of two provincial funding grants, benefiting local community projects, for the Sage Creek Residents’ Association (SCRA). The first is a $36,000 grant through the Building Sustainable Communities program, which will assist the SCRA in its improvements to public event and playground areas in Ron Duhamel Park. The second is $9,947 from our province in Green Team funding, which will help the SCRA cover salary costs and expenses for upkeep and maintenance of greenspace to keep Sage Creek a naturally beautiful place to live.

As many of you may already be aware, in order to alleviate the student overcrowding that has taken place in recent years, I have worked very hard to have a second elementary school built in Sage Creek.

After many years of pushing for this to become a reality, I am very happy to announce that design work on a second Louis Riel School Division kindergarten to Grade 8 school in Sage Creek is expected to begin shortly, news which comes as design work has already begun on a Division Scolaire Franco-Manitobaine kindergarten to Grade 8 school in Sage Creek.

Wednesday, May. 18, 2022

As your MLA, I always put the needs of our community first, and push hard for any programs that can benefit all of us who have made Lagimodiere our home.

I am very happy to say that the results of this advocacy have recently paid off for Sage Creek in the form of two provincial funding grants, benefiting local community projects, for the Sage Creek Residents’ Association (SCRA). The first is a $36,000 grant through the Building Sustainable Communities program, which will assist the SCRA in its improvements to public event and playground areas in Ron Duhamel Park. The second is $9,947 from our province in Green Team funding, which will help the SCRA cover salary costs and expenses for upkeep and maintenance of greenspace to keep Sage Creek a naturally beautiful place to live.

As many of you may already be aware, in order to alleviate the student overcrowding that has taken place in recent years, I have worked very hard to have a second elementary school built in Sage Creek.

After many years of pushing for this to become a reality, I am very happy to announce that design work on a second Louis Riel School Division kindergarten to Grade 8 school in Sage Creek is expected to begin shortly, news which comes as design work has already begun on a Division Scolaire Franco-Manitobaine kindergarten to Grade 8 school in Sage Creek.

Manitoba wholeheartedly supports Ukraine

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Manitoba wholeheartedly supports Ukraine

Andrew Smith 3 minute read Wednesday, Mar. 30, 2022

We find ourselves in unprecedented times as we face the first major war of the 21st century, which for many of us is on a scale that we have never seen before in our lifetimes, nor did we ever expect to see.

The current human toll in Ukraine, as a result of this unprovoked Russian assault is abominable. Over three million people have fled the country thus far, with many more families being displaced, their communities destroyed, and thousands of innocent lives lost.

Manitoba is home to over 180,000 people of Ukrainian extraction, who make up almost 15 per cent of the province’s population, many of whom live right here in our community. As one of those Manitobans with Ukrainian roots, I know how difficult it is for those with loved ones who may be at risk. I have cousins in eastern Ukraine, and pray that they are safe, as our family has not been able to communicate with them since the Russian invasion.

This is not the first time Ukraine has faced Russian aggression and attempts at “Russification.” Three hundred years ago, Catherine the Great of Russia sought to convert Ukraine into part of Russia and two centuries later, Stalin tried a more barbaric approach — purposely starving millions of Ukrainians to death in the 1930s, an attempt at genocide which would come to be known as Holodomor. I know of the latter far too well, as my grandmother, Mary, was a Holodomor survivor. No matter how horrific it was for her, she never lost her resolve. That tenacity is at the core of all Ukrainians, and the driving force of what keeps them fighting for their freedom, even when faced with such insurmountable odds.

Wednesday, Mar. 30, 2022

Manitobans have regularly rallied in support of Ukraine, and are now opening their hearts, homes and wallets to help.

Honoured to serve as a cabinet minister

Andrew Smith 4 minute read Preview

Honoured to serve as a cabinet minister

Andrew Smith 4 minute read Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022

On Jan. 18, I was appointed by Premier Heather Stefanson as Manitoba’s new minister of sport, culture and heritage, and the minister responsible for tourism. I thank the premier for the honour to serve in cabinet. I am proud to be a part of shaping Manitoba’s future for the benefit of both present and future athletes and artists, in this province.In my previous role as legislative assistant for this office, I had the privilege of working with a broad variety of cultural groups, and establishing some great relationships. When things are up and running again, I look forward to attending cultural events such as Folklorama, further exploring previous relationships, and establishing new ones. Manitoba is becoming a prominent artistic hub, and already possesses a strong reputation for producing world-class talent and projects. In our area alone, we have a number of  world-renowned artists, painters, sculptors, actors and writers and others who are working toward that goal. I look forward to continuing to support for them, so we can help foster the growth of an even larger talent pool here in our province. Sport has always been very important to me. During my university years, I had the honour of representing Manitoba at the Western Canadian championships for Olympic-style weightlifting, so I know first-hand the challenges of being involved in amateur athletics. Our community is home to a multitude of hockey players, curlers, baseball players, football players, soccer players, and a variety of other athletes, including several world-class athletes and recent and past Olympians. I am looking forward to seeing Manitoba talent at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games. I am very proud of our athletes, and have the utmost respect for all amateur athletes out there working hard to pursue their goals.I remain firmly committed to our community and, in the future, I look forward to seeing you at local sporting, cultural and artistic events here in our neighbourhood.

On Jan. 18, I was appointed by Premier Heather Stefanson as Manitoba’s new minister of sport, culture and heritage, and the minister responsible for tourism. I thank the premier for the honour to serve in cabinet. I am proud to be a part of shaping Manitoba’s future for the benefit of both present and future athletes and artists, in this province.

In my previous role as legislative assistant for this office, I had the privilege of working with a broad variety of cultural groups, and establishing some great relationships. When things are up and running again, I look forward to attending cultural events such as Folklorama, further exploring previous relationships, and establishing new ones. 

Manitoba is becoming a prominent artistic hub, and already possesses a strong reputation for producing world-class talent and projects. In our area alone, we have a number of  world-renowned artists, painters, sculptors, actors and writers and others who are working toward that goal. I look forward to continuing to support for them, so we can help foster the growth of an even larger talent pool here in our province. 

Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022

On Jan. 18, I was appointed by Premier Heather Stefanson as Manitoba’s new minister of sport, culture and heritage, and the minister responsible for tourism. I thank the premier for the honour to serve in cabinet. I am proud to be a part of shaping Manitoba’s future for the benefit of both present and future athletes and artists, in this province.In my previous role as legislative assistant for this office, I had the privilege of working with a broad variety of cultural groups, and establishing some great relationships. When things are up and running again, I look forward to attending cultural events such as Folklorama, further exploring previous relationships, and establishing new ones. Manitoba is becoming a prominent artistic hub, and already possesses a strong reputation for producing world-class talent and projects. In our area alone, we have a number of  world-renowned artists, painters, sculptors, actors and writers and others who are working toward that goal. I look forward to continuing to support for them, so we can help foster the growth of an even larger talent pool here in our province. Sport has always been very important to me. During my university years, I had the honour of representing Manitoba at the Western Canadian championships for Olympic-style weightlifting, so I know first-hand the challenges of being involved in amateur athletics. Our community is home to a multitude of hockey players, curlers, baseball players, football players, soccer players, and a variety of other athletes, including several world-class athletes and recent and past Olympians. I am looking forward to seeing Manitoba talent at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games. I am very proud of our athletes, and have the utmost respect for all amateur athletes out there working hard to pursue their goals.I remain firmly committed to our community and, in the future, I look forward to seeing you at local sporting, cultural and artistic events here in our neighbourhood.

On Jan. 18, I was appointed by Premier Heather Stefanson as Manitoba’s new minister of sport, culture and heritage, and the minister responsible for tourism. I thank the premier for the honour to serve in cabinet. I am proud to be a part of shaping Manitoba’s future for the benefit of both present and future athletes and artists, in this province.

In my previous role as legislative assistant for this office, I had the privilege of working with a broad variety of cultural groups, and establishing some great relationships. When things are up and running again, I look forward to attending cultural events such as Folklorama, further exploring previous relationships, and establishing new ones. 

Manitoba is becoming a prominent artistic hub, and already possesses a strong reputation for producing world-class talent and projects. In our area alone, we have a number of  world-renowned artists, painters, sculptors, actors and writers and others who are working toward that goal. I look forward to continuing to support for them, so we can help foster the growth of an even larger talent pool here in our province. 

The first Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit contest

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Preview

The first Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit contest

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021

The Christmas season is one of my favourite times of the year.  the years, I have seen many amazing Christmas displays, a number of which, I am proud to say, have been right here in our own neighbourhood.

This year, I have decided to showcase the best of our community’s Christmas decorating efforts by creating the first annual Lagimodiere Christmas Spirit Award contest.

During the month of December, the district’s best Christmas display home, and two runners-up, will be chosen and  honoured. A panel of judges has been assembled, representative of different sections of our community, who will assess every entry.

There will also be teams of volunteers scouting houses over the next few weeks, seeking local contestants. The grand prize will be a trophy, gift cards to local businesses, and a picture of their Christmas House featured on the front of my 2022 mailer, which will be issued to all households in the constituency during the first quarter of the coming year.

Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021

Dreamstime.com
Do you live in the Lagimodiere electoral district and love to decorate your home for the holidays? Enter MLA Andrew Smith’s Christmas Spirit contest.

A time for remembrance

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A time for remembrance

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021

On Nov. 11, I will once again, after a one year hiatus owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, have the honour of attending the annual Remembrance Day celebration, organized and hosted by Norwood-St, Boniface Branch 43 of the Royal Canadian Legion.

This will be a sombre occasion, as we remember our young men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice in order to secure the freedom we are privileged with here in Canada.

Today we live in a world where oftentimes we take for granted the rights and freedoms to which we have become accustomed. On this day, when we honour those who have fought for our country and our freedom, it is hard to find the words to express just what they have given each and every one of us.

Think for a moment what life would be like if not for those who fought and made the ultimate sacrifice for us all. There would be no democracy, which gives us the freedom to vote for our politicians, who represent us on our behalf in government. There would be no human rights, which keep ourselves and our loved ones safe from persecution and violence, and enable us to lead our lives in peace. There would be no freedom of speech, allowing us to express ourselves without the fear of serious reprisals, and harm coming to us and our loved ones. There would be no freedom of beliefs, allowing us the religious freedoms to worship as we see fit.

Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021

On Nov. 11, I will once again, after a one year hiatus owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, have the honour of attending the annual Remembrance Day celebration, organized and hosted by Norwood-St, Boniface Branch 43 of the Royal Canadian Legion.

This will be a sombre occasion, as we remember our young men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice in order to secure the freedom we are privileged with here in Canada.

Today we live in a world where oftentimes we take for granted the rights and freedoms to which we have become accustomed. On this day, when we honour those who have fought for our country and our freedom, it is hard to find the words to express just what they have given each and every one of us.

Think for a moment what life would be like if not for those who fought and made the ultimate sacrifice for us all. There would be no democracy, which gives us the freedom to vote for our politicians, who represent us on our behalf in government. There would be no human rights, which keep ourselves and our loved ones safe from persecution and violence, and enable us to lead our lives in peace. There would be no freedom of speech, allowing us to express ourselves without the fear of serious reprisals, and harm coming to us and our loved ones. There would be no freedom of beliefs, allowing us the religious freedoms to worship as we see fit.

Many welcome changes in Lagimodiere

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Preview

Many welcome changes in Lagimodiere

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 15, 2021

At daybreak on Sept. 1, as the sun rose above the horizon, I could see that it was going to be a beautiful, hot and clear Manitoba summer day.

Taking in the light morning breeze, I could feel the winds of change taking place as our province’s 23rd Premier, Kelvin Goertzen, was sworn in. I congratulate him on his new role, and wish him the very best for the next couple months, until our new, permanent leader is chosen at the end of this current leadership race.

The summer also saw many welcome changes in our neighbourhood as well. We were happy to welcome Jenna Rae Cakes to the Island Lakes Strip Mall, along with eye catching new signage on the clock tower, and the addition of a much needed backlit pylon sign, to advertise the local businesses in the mall. I was also excited about announcing the construction of the new SEIG Pathway, joining the existing pathway through Seigneurie Park to the intersection lights at Lagimodiere Boulevard, which has since been completed.

Some changes have also taken place recently in Sage Creek. I am pleased with the addition of the new tennis and pickleball courts at Ron Duhamel Park, that were completed this summer. I would also like to thank Kathy and Jim Wyryha for their many years of service as the former owners of the local McDonald’s.

Wednesday, Sep. 15, 2021

Supplied photo
Brett O’Meara, left, and Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith visit at a local McDonald’s in the constituency. Brett and Jodie O’Meara (not pictured) recently became the restaurant’s new owners.

Seig pathway construction begins

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Preview

Seig pathway construction begins

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Thursday, Aug. 12, 2021

On May 28 of last year, I was pleased to announce provincial funding for a multi-use path in Seignieurie Park, known predominantly in the community as the Seig pathway.

Over the past year, many of you have been asking about this project, eagerly awaiting its start. This summer, I am happy to say that the ground has officially been broken, and construction has commenced on this highly anticipated addition to the Island Lakes community.

Wed., July 28, was the day of our official ground-breaking ceremony, and I was joined by representatives from the Island Lakes Residents’ Group (ILRG), and St. Boniface city councillor Matt Allard. Thank you to ILRG for spearheading this project, and the City of Winnipeg for its partnership.

The SEIG Pathway will be used by both pedestrians and cyclists alike, and will run through Seignieurie Park in Island Lakes to the controlled intersection at Lagimodière Boulevard and Sage Creek Boulevard. The pathway will consist of a permanently paved section between the Sage Creek intersection, running up the Lagimodière berm, and will link to a smaller existing pathway in Seigneurie Park.

Thursday, Aug. 12, 2021

Supplied photo
Plenty of folks were on hand for the official groundbreaking ceremony for construction of the new Seig pathway. They included (from left): Wayne and Helen Lymburner; ILRG president Lindsey Wilson; Lagimodière MLA Andrew Smith; Chantale Thurston; Valerie Zurrin; and Coun. Matt Allard (St. Boniface).

Congratulations to all high school graduates

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Preview

Congratulations to all high school graduates

Andrew Smith 2 minute read Thursday, Jul. 15, 2021

During our high school years, we learn the skills that prepare us for our future careers. These are our formative years, the ones that pour the foundation upon which we build our lives. It is here that many of us have learned important life skills, especially when it comes to excelling in our studies, as well as athletic endeavours.

Every year, there are a few graduates who stand out amongst the rest. These are the students who rise to the challenge, and greatly improve from where they started, and in doing so deserve to be recognized.

Starting in 2016, when I was first elected to office, I established Most Improved Student and Most Improved Athlete scholarships to assist these young people in their post-secondary endeavours.

 I am pleased to announce that for the sixth consecutive year, I recognized four such students for my scholarships at the high schools in our neighbourhood: two from J.H. Bruns Collegiate, one from Collège Beliveau, and one from Centre scolaire Léo-Rémillard.

Thursday, Jul. 15, 2021

During our high school years, we learn the skills that prepare us for our future careers. These are our formative years, the ones that pour the foundation upon which we build our lives. It is here that many of us have learned important life skills, especially when it comes to excelling in our studies, as well as athletic endeavours.

Every year, there are a few graduates who stand out amongst the rest. These are the students who rise to the challenge, and greatly improve from where they started, and in doing so deserve to be recognized.

Starting in 2016, when I was first elected to office, I established Most Improved Student and Most Improved Athlete scholarships to assist these young people in their post-secondary endeavours.

 I am pleased to announce that for the sixth consecutive year, I recognized four such students for my scholarships at the high schools in our neighbourhood: two from J.H. Bruns Collegiate, one from Collège Beliveau, and one from Centre scolaire Léo-Rémillard.

Protecting our community with immunity

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 3 minute read Preview

Protecting our community with immunity

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 3 minute read Thursday, Jun. 17, 2021

As Manitoba’s first-dose vaccination rate continues to grow, additional efforts are being taken to address vaccine hesitancy and access to ensure that Manitoba is able to reach its provincial vaccination goals.

As a government we are we are doing everything we can to ensure that Manitobans have the information and support they need in order to make the right decisions to protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities.

To improve uptake, this latest phase of vaccinations will be bolstered by ProtectMB community outreach and incentive grants, which includes funding for local organizations, groups, and businesses in the province that work with vaccine-hesitant communities.

As well, an expanded ProtectMB advertising campaign will be implemented to encourage Manitobans to receive their vaccinations so they can enjoy the activities they have missed and allow everyone to enjoy such freedoms once again. There will also be expanded vaccine access through clinics, pop-up vaccination sites, and pharmacies, to make it easier than ever to choose vaccination, so that the province can reopening safely.

Thursday, Jun. 17, 2021

As Manitoba’s first-dose vaccination rate continues to grow, additional efforts are being taken to address vaccine hesitancy and access to ensure that Manitoba is able to reach its provincial vaccination goals.

As a government we are we are doing everything we can to ensure that Manitobans have the information and support they need in order to make the right decisions to protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities.

To improve uptake, this latest phase of vaccinations will be bolstered by ProtectMB community outreach and incentive grants, which includes funding for local organizations, groups, and businesses in the province that work with vaccine-hesitant communities.

As well, an expanded ProtectMB advertising campaign will be implemented to encourage Manitobans to receive their vaccinations so they can enjoy the activities they have missed and allow everyone to enjoy such freedoms once again. There will also be expanded vaccine access through clinics, pop-up vaccination sites, and pharmacies, to make it easier than ever to choose vaccination, so that the province can reopening safely.

Green Team grants to help local groups

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Green Team grants to help local groups

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Wednesday, May. 19, 2021

I am pleased to highlight a recent provincial announcement, one that will have a positive influence right in our neighbourhood.

Over $10 million in Green Team grant programs has been announced, which will help young Manitobans find summer employment, and gain work experience, while supporting COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.  

Three recipients of the Green Team grant are right here in our constituency, and they include Meadowood Manor Personal Care Home for $13,522, the Sage Creek Residents Association for $10,008, and the St. Boniface — St. Vital Baseball Club for $4,768. The funds will be used to employ youths and young adults in the capacity of exterior grounds maintenance for these local organizations.

I recognize the value of supporting community-based organizations and providing youth with critical work experience and income during these challenging times. These grants are a strong investment in our youth, as they help them get involved in our communities, and parks, while kick-starting their career prospects.

Wednesday, May. 19, 2021

I am pleased to highlight a recent provincial announcement, one that will have a positive influence right in our neighbourhood.

Over $10 million in Green Team grant programs has been announced, which will help young Manitobans find summer employment, and gain work experience, while supporting COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.  

Three recipients of the Green Team grant are right here in our constituency, and they include Meadowood Manor Personal Care Home for $13,522, the Sage Creek Residents Association for $10,008, and the St. Boniface — St. Vital Baseball Club for $4,768. The funds will be used to employ youths and young adults in the capacity of exterior grounds maintenance for these local organizations.

I recognize the value of supporting community-based organizations and providing youth with critical work experience and income during these challenging times. These grants are a strong investment in our youth, as they help them get involved in our communities, and parks, while kick-starting their career prospects.

Supporting local businesses in our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Supporting local businesses in our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Wednesday, Apr. 21, 2021

I shop locally whenever I can and in doing so I am happy with the variety of local businesses we have in our community.

It has been a difficult year for Manitobans, but we are prevailing, as the strong and supportive people we are and have always been.

The heart of our community is our local businesses, the places we conveniently frequent for many of our daily shopping needs, which also employ a number of people who live here. Because of such strong community support and growth, I am pleased to see that more businesses are coming to our neighbourhood, including Jenna Rae Cakes in Island Lakes, and Tommy Gun’s Original Barber Shop in Sage Creek.

Thank you to everyone who has supported and continues to support our local businesses. The outpouring of support has tremendously helped.

Wednesday, Apr. 21, 2021

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MLA Andrew Smith at Island Lakes strip mall.

New K-8 school coming to Sage Creek

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

New K-8 school coming to Sage Creek

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Mar. 22, 2021

I am pleased to announce plans by our government to acquire land for a new kindergarten to Grade 8 school in Sage Creek.

I have strongly advocated for this over the past few years, and am happy that all the time and effort spent has as made the difference. I have always been committed to making sure that we were meeting the needs of our growing communities, and now we are doing more, by investing in new school construction to support staff and students. This new K-8 facility will provide access to enhanced learning opportunities for students and educators in the very best classroom space.

The Manitoba government is investing over $210 million in crucial K-12 school capital projects, including $24 million for seven land acquisition projects for future school sites. This announcement builds upon the government’s commitment to building 20 new schools over 10 years, with six already open and in use, and the remainder expected to be completed ahead of schedule.

As well, we have also announced increased funding to public school divisions for the 2021-22 school year of $20.8 million, totalling a record-setting investment of $1.35 billion.

Monday, Mar. 22, 2021

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Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith near the entrance to Sage Creek, where a new kindergarten to Grade 8 school will soon be built.

Remember those less fortunate this winter

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Remember those less fortunate this winter

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021

As we leave 2020 behind us, 2021 is off to a promising start when it comes to members of our community who diligently give of themselves to help the most vulnerable in society.

Last year, I was honoured to volunteer alongside members of the Ramgarhia Association in their effort to feed frontline workers and those in need.

This year, volunteers from that organization, consisting of Lagimodiere residents Nimmi and Baldev Ramgotra and Pam and Satinder Ghattora, established Nanak Support, an initiative whereby evenings are planned to go out and personally feed Winnipeg’s homeless population, located in the downtown core area.

I joined them on Sat., Jan. 9. We traveled in a convoy of a few vehicles, and stopped at every bus shelter we could find that was acting as temporary living quarters for the homeless. We delivered several dozen pizzas, dozens of juice boxes, and bottles of water. The people were very happy to see us, and gladly accepted the warm meals.

Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021

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Lagimodiere residents MLA Andrew Smith and Nimmi Ramgotra helped feed homeless Winnipeggers on Jan. 9.

Our community’s generosity is impressive

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Our community’s generosity is impressive

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Dec. 28, 2020

Although this is a Christmas and New Year’s season like no other, I am encouraged by the tremendous generosity of our community.

Over the month of December, I organized a food and clothing drive for Siloam Mission, and I was impressed by the enthusiastic participation of those who made donations, as our office received a constant flood of emails and phone calls from people asking us where they could drop off their items. Siloam Mission offers its heartfelt thank yous for the generous outpouring of donations from you.

Those in need across Winnipeg and the rest of the province have long required our support, especially during the Christmas season. This year has been particularly challenging, and I thank everyone for stepping up, and donating what they could, to such a great cause.

This is an excellent way for us to end such a challenging year. As we leave the year 2020 behind, and welcome 2021, we have much reason to be optimistic and hopeful. We have already begun to witness the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in our province, and I look forward to further rollout throughout the coming year.

Monday, Dec. 28, 2020

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Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith is pictured with community donations to Siloam Mission.

A time to give in our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 3 minute read Preview

A time to give in our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 3 minute read Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020

As a very challenging year winds down to a close, the Christmas season is upon us. With the struggles we are currently facing as a society, most of us can turn to our families for love, comfort and solace.

There are many in our communities, however, who do not have that stability, and not only face loneliness and lack of support but also abject poverty. Thankfully, there are a number of compassionate goodwill organizations in our city, which exist solely to help those most desperately in need.

Siloam Mission is one of these, and its mission, as a Christian humanitarian organization, is to assist those affected by poverty and homelessness and help them through their most difficult times  by giving them opportunities that they could never have found on their own.  Those with nowhere else to turn find themselves in a place that gives them hope, starting with a warm meal, clothing and shelter if desired.

 Siloam Mission and similar organizations rely on donations in order to exist. Monetary donations are crucial, helping them in maintain their daily operations and affording them the ability to expand their services to more people in need.

Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020

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Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith is encouraging everyone to donate non-perishable food items to those in need this holiday season.

Building a safer, more accessible community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Building a safer, more accessible community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Tuesday, Sep. 8, 2020

This summer, I was pleased to announce funding for two important projects in our community.

I advocated for these initiatives, and am pleased to work with our government to make them a reality. The projects are the SEIG Pathway and an accessible dock on the Seine River, each of which will contribute to increased safety and accessibility in our community.

The first was $55,105 for the Island Lakes Residents Group (ILRG) SEIG Pathway project. The pathway will be multi-use, and will run through Seignieurie Park in Island Lakes, to the controlled intersection at Lagimodiere and Sage Creek Boulevards.

The pathway will be a permanently paved path between the Sage Creek intersection, up the Lagimodiere berm, and will link to a smaller existing pathway in Seigneurie Park. This walkway will further connect our community, and provide a much-needed, safe means for individuals, and families, to travel back and forth between Island Lakes and Sage Creek.

Tuesday, Sep. 8, 2020

This summer, I was pleased to announce funding for two important projects in our community.

I advocated for these initiatives, and am pleased to work with our government to make them a reality. The projects are the SEIG Pathway and an accessible dock on the Seine River, each of which will contribute to increased safety and accessibility in our community.

The first was $55,105 for the Island Lakes Residents Group (ILRG) SEIG Pathway project. The pathway will be multi-use, and will run through Seignieurie Park in Island Lakes, to the controlled intersection at Lagimodiere and Sage Creek Boulevards.

The pathway will be a permanently paved path between the Sage Creek intersection, up the Lagimodiere berm, and will link to a smaller existing pathway in Seigneurie Park. This walkway will further connect our community, and provide a much-needed, safe means for individuals, and families, to travel back and forth between Island Lakes and Sage Creek.

Recognizing teaching excellence

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Recognizing teaching excellence

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2020

In our neighbourhood, we have a number of individuals who contribute so much to their community.

One such resident is Dr. Anju Bajaj, a renowned teacher at Holy Cross School who goes the extra mile for her students. She is also a founder, co-ordinator, and organizer of the nationally accredited Bison Regional Science Fair for independent, Catholic, and home schools, which is not only extensive, but showcases some of the brightest young minds in the province.

Winners of the fair compete at the national and international levels, with all of their expenses allocated by Dr. Bajaj from various means of fundraising and science activities throughout the year. Anju is the kind of educator who nurtures young minds to excel, and in doing so, allows student talents to flourish, paving the way for bright futures ahead in Manitoba.

In honour of her diligence and professionalism in education, she was the 2019-2020 recipient of the teaching excellence sward at Manitoba’s Excellence in Education Awards.

Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2020

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Dr. Anju Bajaj (left) is pictured here with Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith.

What Phase 2 means for our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

What Phase 2 means for our community

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Jun. 15, 2020

On June 1, we began Phase 2 of the Manitoba government’s Restoring Safe Services plan. I applaud Manitobans in diligently flattening the curve, which has now enabled the restoration of a much wider variety of services, as well as a greater degree of overall operations.

This restoration of services includes: increasing child-care centre occupancy to up to 24 children plus staffing;  increasing day camp group sizes to 24; resuming sports, arts and cultural activities for children and adults; lifting occupancy limits at outdoor recreation facilities and golf courses outdoors, as long as physical distancing can be maintained and allowing limited access to indoor spaces; allowing direct travel to northern parks, campgrounds, cabins, lodges and resorts while ensuring physical distancing; allowing public/private swimming pools, spas, fitness clubs, gyms and community/service centres to reopen with some limitations; allowing religious or other organizations to hold outdoor services or events without limitation on numbers if people stay in their vehicles; reopening manicurists and pedicurists, tattoo parlours, estheticians, cosmetologists, electrologists and tanning parlours at 50 per cent capacity; and allowing restaurants, bars, micro-breweries and distilleries to reopen indoor spaces at 50 per cent capacity and to offer patio services at that capacity level.

As a result of Phase 1, I had the privilege to visit re-opened local businesses, in our community, which included Block & Blade, Freshii, Chicken Chef, Mary Brown’s, Snips N’ Shears, and Von Riesen Hair Co.

Patrons, staff, and owners alike were very pleased to be back at work, while at the same time following current health orders to the letter. Phase 2 further lifted restrictions, which allowed me to visit the recently reopened Southdale Community Centre, where youth hockey camp was in full swing, while all involved were strictly adhering to current health protocols.

Monday, Jun. 15, 2020

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Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith (left) and Tamara Bauknecht, president of the Southdale Community Centre, chat in the centre’s arena.

Crime an issue in Island Lakes

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Crime an issue in Island Lakes

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Dec. 30, 2019

The Christmas season is a time spent with loved ones where everyone should feel happy, safe and secure.

Unfortunately, crime has been a serious issue in our province lately, so I want you to know that both I and our provincial government are taking this matter very seriously.

Our Safer Streets, Safer Lives Action Plan will crack down on drug dealers victimizing our communities and make downtown Winnipeg safe again. But downtown is not the only area that needs improvement, as there have been rashes of crime right in our very own community.

Within the past few years, there has been an ongoing theft ring, which has been breaking into cars in Island Lakes, and wreaking havoc on our neighbourhood. With the increase in smash-and-grab crimes across the city, you may have noticed an increased police presence at retail locations around town, including our area. Unfortunately, that means that there is no area in our city that is devoid of crime.

Monday, Dec. 30, 2019

The Christmas season is a time spent with loved ones where everyone should feel happy, safe and secure.

Unfortunately, crime has been a serious issue in our province lately, so I want you to know that both I and our provincial government are taking this matter very seriously.

Our Safer Streets, Safer Lives Action Plan will crack down on drug dealers victimizing our communities and make downtown Winnipeg safe again. But downtown is not the only area that needs improvement, as there have been rashes of crime right in our very own community.

Within the past few years, there has been an ongoing theft ring, which has been breaking into cars in Island Lakes, and wreaking havoc on our neighbourhood. With the increase in smash-and-grab crimes across the city, you may have noticed an increased police presence at retail locations around town, including our area. Unfortunately, that means that there is no area in our city that is devoid of crime.

Remembering the original ‘Mr. Southdale’

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Remembering the original ‘Mr. Southdale’

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Nov. 18, 2019

I was very happy to see Jack Reimer Drive in Bonavista, right here in our community.

In discovering this while I was the MLA for Southdale, I felt a great sense of privilege to be walking in his footsteps, as he was Southdale’s very first MLA.

The Southdale constituency, which had previously been a large part of the Niakwa constituency, was where Jack was first elected MLA in September of 1990. He served two very successful terms there, which included his second term appointment as Minister of Urban Affairs and Minister of Housing by Premier Gary Filmon. The Southdale constituency was then formed in 1999, and in September of that year, Jack was elected as the new riding’s first MLA, where he would remain for two more terms in office.

It was interesting to find out that Jack and I also shared another parallel, as we are both of Slavic descent; he being Russian on his father’s side, and I, maternally Ukrainian. I have always very much respected Jack, as he was very active in his community, and I have carried on those ways, as community is first and foremost for me. Jack paved the way for every subsequent Southdale MLA, as he initiated many enhancements to our community, including being the first to advocate for the Southdale Community Centre expansion.

Monday, Nov. 18, 2019

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Lagimodiere MLA Andrew Smith was pleased to see Jack Reimer Drive, named in tribute to the area’s former longtime MLA.

Honoured to represent you again

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Preview

Honoured to represent you again

Andrew Smith — Lagimodière MLA Constituency Report 2 minute read Monday, Oct. 7, 2019

Thank you to the people of Lagimodiere for entrusting me with representing them in the Manitoba Legislative Assembly.

To the residents of Southdale, I thank you for the opportunity to have served you over the past few years. I am humbled by the opportunity to serve another term as an MLA.

During my first term, I successfully advocated for a number of projects, including: École Van Belleghem’s portable classrooms, which enabled them to be a kindergarten to grade eight school; the construction of École Guyot’s additional classrooms which also allowed for K to 8; a new cell tower in Sage Creek for much-needed improvement in cell service coverage; Sage Creek’s new Living Prairie Day Care facility providing 74 new child care spaces due to $740,000 of funding from our provincial government; a $14,000 government grant for The Island Lakes Residents Group “Get Fit” outdoor exercise equipment program; a $75,000 government grant towards the construction of an outdoor learning environment at Island Lakes Community School, a community project that will benefit the children who attend the school as well as many others in the community. Our government listened to your concerns, and are committed to building two new schools in Sage Creek.

I look forward to serving this second term in office, and I will continue to advocate for our community.

Monday, Oct. 7, 2019

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MLA Andrew Smith pictured in November 2018 at a provincial government announcement regarding Sage Creek’s Living Prairie Day Care.