The way of the future isn’t all it’s cracked up to be - sometimes.
The writing was on the wall prior to the closure of Murray River CIBC last year. It had served the community for 92 years.
The same dismal prophesy was apparent in Morell when staff was cut back at its Scotiabank branch in 2017.
(Morell residents still have the option of utilizing the Credit Union located there.)
However, the common denominator is the communities lost, or are losing, the convenience of their chosen institutions.
Clients from both are forced to seek services elsewhere: Murray River residents went to Montague and Scotiabank customers in Morell will now have to drive to Sherwood.
Murray River CIBC shut down the latter part of August 2018. Morell’s Scotiabank will close this month.
One of the foremost issues is not everyone does online banking and the demographics of both communities shows an aging population.
Simplified, that means seniors who no longer drive or choose to only navigate close to home are basically out of luck unless they drive into Charlottetown.
Some Murray River residents locked their jaws into the bone of contention but to no avail.
At a public meeting where CIBC troubleshooting heads were brought in to explain (and allegedly justify) the CIBC branch closure, resignation slowly seeped into the Murray River hall where the delegation had gathered.
Admitting defeat doesn’t come easy for rural communities that are forced to tic amenities off a list of assets within a stone’s throw of home.
Technology is great but only when people can control it. It’s a sorry day when it controls people and even worse, when we allow it to do so.
The days of the internet being a luxury are well behind us. Technology is a necessity now. Good luck to the users who can’t, or refuse to keep up.
Volunteers make it all happen - again
2019 summer festivals across the eastern PEI region are gradually entering into the history books.
But wait, there’s more to come.
This weekend will be a whopper in Montague with an Atlantic Canadian rugby championship expected to bring in about 500 or so people and Montague Summer Days will be going full tilt on the waterfront.
It’s impossible to calculate but the specific number of volunteer hours put into these and other summer events is collectively astounding.
It’s through the mammoth efforts of young, old, experienced and newbie volunteers that put the fun factor in festivals and celebrations and make them succeed.
Young hands and minds are critical in breathing new life into events. A winning formula is sure to surface under the tutelage of the more experienced.
The youth of today are the organizers of tomorrow. Time will reflect their goals and ambitions but first they must be given the opportunity to help out.
So, hats off to all the people who freely offer precious hours of a short summer to give positive exposure to the small communities of eastern PEI.
Not to worry if you’ve missed some of the festivities so far: Georgetown Summer Days, the Northumberland Fisheries Festival and others are still to come.
Heather Moore is editor of The Eastern Graphic. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org