Recovery Day Ottawa is an annual event held at City Hall that has been working to break down the stigma around substance abuse and addiction. On May 5th, you can help by attending a benefit, called Learn Laugh Listen! An evening to benefit Recovery Day Ottawa.
We spoke with Gord Garner, a local addictions counsellor, and chair of Recovery Day Ottawa since 2015, about the benefit and what Recovery Day is all about.
“It’s not an exclusive event,” says Garner. It’s for communities, it’s for families, we’ve had bouncy castles… This year we’re going to try to set a record for the largest naloxone training at one time in Canada, and make our community a safer place. Just having that conversation does so much to break down the stigma.”
Addiction, directly or indirectly, affect most of the population. Approximately 8 out of 10 people know someone who has struggled with substance abuse.
“That’s 800,000 people in Ottawa who knows somebody who has struggled with substance abuse at some point in their life and support their well-being. We only need 2% of those people to come to Recovery Day and we’d have 16,000 people surrounding city hall, and we’d never have to talk about resource again. They would just come.”
The benefit will feature award-winning local band Twin Flames, comedian Alex Wood, and a talk and Q&A about the neuroscience and research behind substance use disorder with Dr. Kim Hellemens and Dr. John Weekes.
Learn Laugh Listen! takes place at the Bronson Centre on May 5th. Click here for full event info. Tickets are $20 cash at the door, or you can email Gord at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.