Mental Illness Awareness Week

Canada’s Temperance Foundation (CTF) marks


From November 15–21, 2015, will join with the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (CCSA) and addiction prevention, treatment and recovery organizations across the country to mark National Addictions Awareness Week (NAAW).

This year’s theme is “Addiction Matters,” drawing attention to substance abuse as a chronic health issue that impacts individuals, families and communities across Canada. We see firsthand the fear and shame due to stigma and discrimination in our society that can be felt as the people we care about struggle with substance use disorder.

A large part of any solution involves addressing head on this stigma associated with substance abuse. This disorder does not discriminate. Yet many still believe it is a moral failing and discriminate against those with a substance use disorder, which may prevent our family, friends, neighbors and colleagues from seeking the help they need.

Did You Know?

In Canada, substance abuse overall costs $40 billion every year and has negative impacts on the healthcare system, public safety and the economy.

Led nationally by CCSA, NAAW highlights issues and solutions to help address alcohol- and other drug-related harms. It provides an opportunity for Canadians to learn more about substance abuse prevention and to talk about treatment and recovery. Together, we continue to bring forward solutions that inform policy and change practices.

“Addiction negatively impacts lives and removes from our communities those who would otherwise be contributing to their families, working, volunteering or studying,” said Rita Notarandrea, CCSA’s Chief Executive Officer. “The good news is that addiction is preventable and treatable, and recovery is an attainable reality for many. Together, we turn evidence into action to reduce the harms experienced by those we care about — this is at the heart of what we do every day at CCSA.”

Long-term recovery from alcohol and drug addiction is both achievable and sustainable when it is based on the evidence. Canadians in all provinces and territories have a fundamental right to access high-quality, consistent prevention, treatment and recovery support services — because addiction matters to every one of us, and recovery is real. is proud to stand with CCSA and community partners to reinforce that addiction matters — to people in British Columbia and all across Canada. CTF works to address the many harms of substance abuse and provide education on healthy choices leading to healthy living in our schools and communities. By promoting healthy choices and reducing stigma, it will lead to Canadian’s feeling more comfortable to seek help when they need it. Moreover, the increased knowledge will lead to individuals being more aware so that they may be able to help others who may be at risk.

This week CEO and Founder, Miles Craig and Community Outreach Coordinator, Luke de Leseleuc are attending Issues of Substance 2015: Addiction Matters in Montreal, Quebec. This premier learning event is an unparalleled opportunity for them to learn about new developments and best practices, and to get practical training related to addictions prevent, treatment and recover.  Along with attending the training sessions Miles & Luke will be sharing our Be You – Outreach & Awareness Project and the programs and services that delivers.

For more information on National Addictions Awareness Week, please visit You can also join the dialogue over social media by following @CCSACanada by using the hashtag #NAAWCanada.