The BCHL has partnered with the Together We Can Addiction Recovery and Education Centre, an organization that helps individuals who are struggling with substance reliance.
“The pressures of junior hockey can give some the idea they have failed and, if an injury, particularly a concussion, is added to the equation it can be hard to cope with,” said BCHL commissioner John Grisdale. “The partnerships we’ve joined are for the best interests and well-being of players. But we also want everyone in our league, including fans and all residents of each BCHL community, to know these services are available to the public should they feel the need to ask.”
The partnership with Together We Can adds to existing BCHL initiatives with the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) and with HeadCheck Health, providing tools to anyone who may be affected by head injuries, low mood and depression.
“While many athletes may have experienced addiction in their lives, we also know that sports play an important role in the healing process,” said Together We Can communications manager Christopher Steffler. “Participation brings people together to work towards a common goal and encourages physical fitness, both of which are integral to leading a healthy lifestyle and building a life in sobriety.”
TWC employs former junior hockey players Steve Bull and Nathan MacMaster in their intake services department. Both reached elite levels in the game but also struggled being displaced from home and trying to cope with injuries and expectations. Steve and Nathan each went through cycles of substance use before getting help and working their way back to health.
See twcvancouver.org for more info.