It’s hard to believe September is behind us. This year Recovery Month made some significant strides here in Calgary toward raising awareness about the issues facing men, women, and yes, teens too – who battle the disease of addiction. Over the course of the month the Calgary recovery community was out in force. It was hard not to notice all the brave people who shared their own story, held or attended an awareness-raising event, and started conversations that are breaking down the stigma related to addiction.
Recovery Acre’s Party in the Park
Calgary musicians and music lovers hit Sandy Beach Park on September 9 for Recovery Acre’s third annual Party in the Park – an outdoor concert and BBQ. “We want to increase awareness around addiction and mental health issues,” says Executive Director Gerry Melsted. “This is an opportunity to bring our recovery community together with the broader Calgary community to enjoy great music and family activities.”
An eclectic mix of Calgary musicians took the stage along with emcee Bearcat Murray in support of addiction treatment programs at 1835 House and Co-occurring Addiction Recovery Essentials (CARE) for Women. The Sadlier Brown Band kicked off with their own flavour of rootsy-rockabilly-folk fusion. Music fans also heard
lively jam sessions with Kelly Kruse, Chris Brzezicki, Ralph Boyd Johnson, Brent Wright, Tim Williams, and Brian Soveriegn. U2station closed the day with a sampling of U2’s best.
A big thank you everyone who helped make the day great, including Jeff Lepard and Urban Audio.
Five years ago, Recovery Day got its official start with rallies in Vancouver and Victoria. Since then it has blossomed into hope-filled events in more than 30 cities across the country, including Calgary.
This year the Rally for Recovery took place at Shaw Millennium Park. Mayor Naheed Nenshi kicked the event off and Calgary was treated to a free performance by rock band Econoline Crush. The greater Calgary recovery community came out to share personal stories, information, and inspiration.
No one knows the heartbreak of addiction better than a parent who is trying to help a son or daughter find recovery. Vanisha Breault is both a passionate mother on a mission, and the founder of the Terminator Foundation. “Creating the Terminator Run was an opportunity to bring this issue into the spotlight,” says Vanisha. “People should never have to hide in shame, self-loathing, and believing there is no hope from this disease. I am proof that there is hope. My daughter is proof that there is hope.”
Calgarians did their part to help terminate stigma by putting their running shoes on with Vanisha at the third annual Terminator Run for Youth Addiction Awareness in North Glenmore Park on September 17.