Journey with People in Recovery

Date(s) - May 14, 2016
8:00 am - 12:30 pm

Gateway Community Church

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We all have struggled with addiction in our lives: food, drugs, alcohol, sexual ~ to name a few. Most of us have not enjoyed being caught on addiction’s vicious treadmill. We also find ourselves in relationship with others who are trying to break free and are in need of help. Do you know what to do? Start by coming to this conference. Don’t let $ stop you. Contact us if you need financial assistance. We will help you come. Who can benefit? Professionals in addiction therapy; family members and friends of people in recovery; people wanting help to break free of addiction. 

This is a rare opportunity. It will not be coming back to this region any time soon. Take advantage of this morning. You will be thankful you did. 

Keynote Address: How Brain Science Helps Understand and Treat Addictions with Gillian Drader

Exciting breakthroughs are happening in the field of Neuroscience, informing our understanding of the brain’s contributions to addiction and providing new and effective treatments that bring great hope for long lasting healing and recovery. Here is an overview of some of the latest research and understanding regarding the brain’s involvement in addiction.

Ms. Drader is a counselling professional with over twenty years of extensive work experience with individuals and families. She is a resource for community based organizations and school districts both locally and internationally. Her research has endeavoured to further some of the most effective trauma therapies that are available for individuals dealing with complex trauma and addiction. She is a guest lecturing and supervisor of Master’s Level students at a local university. She is committed to empowering her clients and the public in terms of providing skills and information that will allow them to live more fulfilling and effective lives. 

Breakout Sessions:

1. Practical Neuroscience: Tools You Can Use with Gillian Drader

This workshop will provide hands on activities and tools to support both family members and those dealing with addiction to move forward in recovery at all levels. Understanding the ways in which the brain is involved in addiction is important and having practical ways to incorporate this understanding into day to day practices is both possible and available.

2.  Journeying Together with Keith St. Jean

This workshop offers a brief introduction to addiction and what it means to walk with someone who is struggling with substance misuse. Topics will include: What is Addiction; The Cycle of Addiction; Common Characteristics of Addiction; The Key to Recovery; Learning to Listen Well; and Creating Healthy Boundaries. There will be a time for Q&A during the workshop as a means of generating discussion and ideas. We will identify goals of relationship building, ways to create healthy boundaries within the relationship, and strategies for a successful and healthy relational connection with men and women in recovery in order to encourage mutual growth and learning.

Keith St. Jean has for nine years provided pastoral and counselling mentorship for people struggling with substance abuse through his role as Pastor of Recovery Ministries at Level Ground Mennonite Church in Abbotsford and LifeBridge Ministries. He is also the Personal Development Coordinator with the newly developed Employment Readiness Program at Kinghaven Treatment Centre.  He has developed several programs to help men and women in recovery and to educate people on the topic of addiction. These programs include a class on the spirituality of recovery entitled “Where the Mind is Without Fear.” He has also written the “Going Deeper” discipleship course and the “Walking Together” mentor training program for those wishing to journey with people on the road to recovery as well as a series on anger called “Responding Well” and a series on sexuality and relationships called “Integrity, Purity, Passion.” Recently Keith completed work on a series entitle “S.O.B.E.R. Skills” which offers people practical life skills in their journey towards recovery.

3.  After Recovery with Melanie Stewart & Marian Vanderwal

This workshop offers practical insight into the needs of a person’s personal journey through recovery and outlines their plight upon graduating from addiction recovery programs throughout the Lower Mainland. The need to support women leaving recovery programs into second stage housing will also be presented, not only as an opportunity for connecting, inspiring and caring, but most importantly for clients to have accountability and a plan.

Melanie Stewart 

Melanie has had the opportunity to work with women seeking recovery from substance addictions for the last five and a half years. Melanie was a client at Life recovery in 2010, where she completed first and second stage housing. In 2014, after working internationally with YWAM, Melanie became apart of the staff team at LIFE Recovery. Being a staff member gave her the opportunity to encourage the clients and share her personal experiences to inspire the women that they too can have a life of freedom in sobriety. Melanie has come to realize that nothing is impossible for God. 

Marian Vanderwal In 2001, while attending an Alpha program Marian was introduced to the clients in the LIFE Recovery Program.  She became involved in various capacity’s, from volunteering on the Board of Directors, workshops for fundraising events and manager of the LIFE’s Second Chance Thrift Store.  Currently she is serving as chairperson for the Board of Directors. 

4. Got Porn? with Dr. Kirk Austin

Current research suggests that the Internet has more than 400 million pages of pornography- and that this number is growing every day. The fact that much of this content is free, accessible and anonymous contributes to many people falling victim to its allure. As a result, many develop guilt & shame, anxiety, depression, hidden patterns of use and significant personal consequences. Often, people struggle in isolation and don’t know where to turn for help. The break-out session will help people to understand the nature of the porn industry, the nature of captivity and the pathway to personal freedom.

Dr. Kirk Austin is a Registered Clinical Counsellor in the Province of British Columbia and has been in practice for the past 25 years. He currently holds roles as a therapist with the BC Cancer Agency, Training Director for Complex Trauma Resources, and works in private practice.

Interactive Panel (Town hall) with Gillian Drader, Keith St. Jean, Jane Cooper Marian Vanderwal, Dr. Kirk Austin

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