Kitchener mayor’s annual address marks anniversary of region’s emergency declaration

Berry Vrbanovic has been Kitchener's mayor since 2014. Handout

Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic’s annual ‘State of the City’ address focused on people, partners and community heroes on the anniversary of the day Waterloo Region declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The story of Kitchener over the past year has truly been unlike any other,” Vrbanovic said.

“Our story has been filled with grief, sorrow, frustration and fear. But it has also been filled with moments of hope, humour and creativity.

“With silver linings that have shone a light on our humanity, pulled us together and shown us the power of our own resilience.

“Despite everything we have faced, I have never been more proud of the people of this city.”

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The presentation, titled ‘Thank You Kitchener,’ was held online this year and the city says it highlighted the story of how it was shaped by business owners, health-care heroes and essential workers, among others.

“Despite our separation, we have found ways to connect with family, friends and neighbours. To share memories and moments… to find gratitude and grace shining through the dark chapters of this pandemic,” Vrbanovic said.

“While these personal stories underline some of our struggles and challenges, they also demonstrate powerful reasons for hope.”

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