Andy Bhatti is bringing out the sports and TV stars, as well as the addictions experts, this weekend to raise awareness of the toll that substance and physical abuse are taking on our part of the world.
It kicks off on Saturday, Dec. 8 with a Celebrity Christmas Food and Toy Drive at Save-On Foods in downtown Langley.
Then, the next day, Andy Bhatti Interventions and Addiction Services presents a panel of experts in the field speaking face-to-face with families about how to deal with substance abuse in their lives. This takes place Sunday, Dec. 9 at the Guildford Golf and Country Club in surrey.
Retired NHL stars Theo Fleury, Dave Babych and Kirk McLean, along with actors Graham Wardle and Jason Day will be at the food and toy drive on Saturday from noon to 2 p.m., in which all contributions will go to Sophie’s Place Youth Child Advocacy Centre in Surrey.
The sports stars and actors will sign autographs and pose for selfies in exchange for donations of non-perishable food items, unwrapped toys or cash donations to Sophie’s Place. Save-on Foods has also provided hot dogs and hot chocolate for the public who donate to Sophie’s Place.
“Our goal is to make Christmas better for the kids who’ve had traumatic experiences. We want to make them believe in happiness, make them know that they are not victims, they are survivors,” said Bhatti.
The “How Addiction Affects Families” event on Sunday is free for families to attend and will help people understand how addiction works and how to find the right path to recovery.
Sunday’s panel will include Theo Fleury, who wrote a best-selling memoir of his abuse as a child and how it led to his self-destructive substance abuse as an adult. Other panelists include Devin McGuire of Revolution Recovery, Marshall Smith of Cedars Cobble Hill Treatment Centre, and Dr. Lacresha Hall, a board certified psychiatrist specializing in addiction medicine.
“The first one we held had 300 people in a 200-person room, people were standing, so we’ve booked a bigger venue for this one,” said Bhatti.
“There are free resources for people who usually can’t afford them. People without money deserve to have resources too.
“Everyone’s plan is different and we work tholepin everybody with where they are in their life,” said Bhatti.
The panel experts will discuss interventions, enabling, co-dependence and recovery, with a focus on how addictions affect families.
“Addiction doesn’t discriminate and this educational event is free,” said Bhatti.
The event runs from 3:30 to 7 p.m., Dec. 9 at Guildford Golf and Country Club, 7929 152nd Street, Surrey.
To reserve a spot at this event or to inquire about emergency services for addiction treatment see: