Badlands Drug Coalition invites addictions author to speak | DrumhellerMail
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Last updateFri, 17 May 2024 12pm

Badlands Drug Coalition invites addictions author to speak

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    The Badlands Drug Coalition has invited a well-known medical doctor, who has spent years working in one of Canada's most notorious neighbourhoods for drug use, to speak to a local audience.

    On Thursday, February 17, Dr. Gabor Mate will be in Drumheller. He will be doing an all-day workshop for professionals entitled “Taming the Hungry Ghost: Addiction and Mental Illness.” In the evening he will be holding a public presentation called “Hold on to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More than Peers.”
    “We’re very excited,” said Cora Bolt of the Badlands Drug Coalition. “He is very well known in the field of addictions and we thought it would be great to speak to the community. Feedback from people who attended in Red Deer is that he does a great job of changing your perspective on addictions.”
    Gabor has written on a number of subjects from attention deficit disorder to stress. His latest, In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction came out in 2008.
    He is currently the staff physician at the Portland Hotel, a progressive project in the Downtown east side of Vancouver that provides permanent housing for adults dealing with mental health and addiction problems.
    “His book talks a lot about personal experience,” said Mike Hanly, a member of the Badlands Drug Coalition.
    Hanly said although Mate is drawing from experience in possibly Canada’s worst neighbourhood for drug abuse, his message still applies.
    “Just because we are a small town doesn’t mean we don’t have all of these problems; we just don’t have them to the same degree,” said Hanly. “All of these things are here, so the more we learn about it, the safer we are as a community.”
    To register for either of the sessions contact Cora Bolt at 403-823-1660 or cora.bolt@albertahealthservices.ca. The professional workshop will be at the Drumheller Health Centre. The evening parent workshop is at Drumheller Valley Secondary School at 7 p.m. and is free of charge. Registration deadline is Friday, February 11.

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