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Last Door Recovery Society NewsletterNewsletter #016
June 2010 
in this issue
:: Did you RSVP?
:: 5th Annual Kelowna Campout - a success
:: Families Reunite
:: Its Door Slam time
:: Last Door Supports Gay Pride Day
:: In memory
:: NDP MLA and MP's meet with Last Door
:: BC Business Magazine and 24 Hours Magazine profile Last Door
Last Door held its Annual General Meeting on June 4th, thank you to everyone who attended.
Did you know that in one year Last Door: 
  • had over 31,000 bed days
  • served 95,000 meals
  • 1092 core program group sessions
  • 416 family and focused group sessions
  • 21,120 hours of individual care
If  you would like to review our 2010 AGM Minutes and AGM Report, as well review our 2009 Outcomes Report please click on the following link:


Last Door's 5th Annual Kelowna Campout
Another way that shows how Last Door places recreational and social activities at the heart of its programs. Two busloads and a few car loads attended the Central Okanagan Area Convention of Narcotics Anonymous Campout.    Over 150 of us from New Westminster participated in fellowship, a one year cake, workshops, speaker meetings, sports and thankfully - three days of sunshine! 



My name is Jimmy and I am an addict. I live in Terrace B.C. and my life was saved after I flew to New Westminster, walked down the side walk, stumbled up the walk and entered in "The Last Door". My addiction introduced me to demons like obsession, denial, isolation, compulsion and self pity. I was a father to five beautiful children in name only. I was a husband to a wonderful wife in name only, a son and brother in title only. I lived a selfish life of drug abuse and obsessive loneliness. I dug myself deeper and deeper into an obsessive pit of getting, using, and finding ways and means to get more.


At the start of my active addiction I carried on a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde dichotomy of a church going father, husband and ethical human being. The other side which at first I kept well hidden was a paranoid, drug induced comma like state of shame and obsession. As time passed - getting drugs, using drugs and getting more drugs became priority in my life over all other responsibilities.  Rock bottom came to me in the form of an overdose and deteriorating health; both mentally and physically.


My pleading prayer and the prayers of those who love me were answered on June 17, 2009 when I arrived at the "Last Door" and into the care of both staff and brothers who loved me until I could love myself. The Last Door taught me to learn from my addiction and crave my recovery. I was shown that honesty, open mindedness and willingness will give me the opportunity to learn from those who got it and teach to those who want it.


I learned at Last Door that laughing and fun are an essential and effective part of recovery. I learned that working a 12 step program and going to meetings and finding a sponsor would give me the tools to live a life of serenity, sanity and recovery. The guys at Last Door laid out for me a map, one end was my active addiction and the other end was the ability and the gift of living clean and living life on life's terms. I was given the directions to get where I needed to go by those at Last Door who had travelled that road before me. 


Today I can look in the mirror and I can love, respect and be proud of what I see. Today I am a father to my kids a husband to my wife, a son to my Pop and a brother to my sisters. God gave me the gift of "Last Door" and in turn I can live as a productive member of society and share a passion for recovery as was shared with me by those who were also given that gift. I recently had the opportunity to celebrate one year of being clean and serene, a celebration of the accomplishment of many and evidence to others that the program of recovery works if you work it.


My family and I thank God every single day for "Last Door" and the Door boys who walk through that door today and those who have walked through it in the past. 


Jimmy M

Clean Date June 17, 2009

Next game:
 Mon, Jun 28 | 7:30 pm | Indoor Field 
 Mon, July 5 | 8:30 pm | Indoor Field
Mon, July 13 | 10:00 pm | Indoor Field
Mon, July 19 | 10:30 pm | Indoor Field
Mon, July 21 | 10:30 pm | Indoor Field

Last Door Recovery Society has been presenting its Annual Door Slam Invitational Slo-Pitch Tournament in New Westminster, BC since 1999.  The weekend attracts over 800 people and is held at ball fields in and around New Westminster with Moody Park being the main venue featuring registration, food, music and a kid's zone.


Last Door Recovery Society has been providing services for over 25 years. The Society is well known and respected in the addiction treatment field and, in 2005 received the ASAP (Association of Substance Abuse Programs of BC) Award of Excellence in Addictions.


Door Slam is another means for Last Door to demonstrate its belief in good citizenship by making community contributions, increasing community awareness and fostering goodwill.  Families, Alumni and friends of Last Door are all welcome to participate in this community event as well as the general public.


2010 Tournament Highlights include:

       35 Recovery Teams from BC and the US
        BBQ Saturday and Sunday, noon to 4 pm 
        Kids zone at Moody park, Saturday 1 pm - 4 pm
        Dinner at Moody Park, Saturday 5 pm
       Food Sponsor www.tangerinecatering.ca



Special thanks to our Food Sponsor




Terrace BC Chinook Trip and Alumni Meeting: 
  • Last Week in July or August Long-weekend 
  • Fly In/Out
  • Hotel & Truck rental 
  • World's largest Chinook
  • For details on attending, contact Don at don@lastdoor.org
Last Door Supports
As years go by and Last Door evolves with PRIDE! we support New Westminster's first Gay Pride Day and the third annual Recovery Float in the Vancouver Pride Parade. 
Join our guys and friends downtown on August 1st and scream loud when you see the Clean Sober and Proud Float and visit Last Door's tent at Tipperary Park in New Westminster on August 7th.
Happy Pride to all our Gay Alumni.
Dear Friends,
"Ain't Got Wonderful"

James Francis Ross (Jim) died in Red Deer Alberta on May 10th, 2010. Jim was one of two people who helped start Last Door in 1984. He, along with Lance Riley coined the "Last Door" name and briefly ran the program out of a rented facility on Carnarvon Street before David took over.  In 1989 under David's leadership the Last Door Recovery Society was officially registered in BC but much is owed to Jim and Lance for planting the seeds for a recovery program in New Westminster.


Those of us who cleaned up back in the early 80's (when the whole world was on a cocaine binge and we were the poor "losers" who couldn't hack it), owe a debt of gratitude to Jim. Turning Point was pivotal in pretty much every NA member's recovery back then and Jim was the heart of Turning Point. Even those of us who weren't clients of Turning Point benefited from the openness and support that Jim fostered in that house. Jim welcomed us all - encouraged, supported and noticed us like the "Den Mother" he was. We alternately called him "Mom", "Auntie Jim" or the "Queen" a title that I am happy to have inherited (at least in New Westminster). Jim was the first person to tell David and I that we should run a recovery house, an idea we secretly scoffed at ....as if! But who knew that Jim could see what we couldn't.


We lost track of Jim for many years but in 2009 he came to the Lower Mainland to help Turning Point celebrate their anniversary. While there he made a trip out to New West and spent a day at Last Door. Although his health was not good - he was still the Jim we remembered - it took an hour to get down the hall because he had to stop, meet, acknowledge and encourage each newcomer he came accross. Many times throughout the visit Jim would comment, "Ain't God wonderful" and as he left he said to David, with tears in his eyes, "You have realized my dream."


This photo was taken in the early 80's on the steps of the old Turning Point. Jim in all his glory! Although he was known to dress in ball gowns at times and could be very "extravagant" the man was the brother, sister, father, mother and or course, Auntie to many people who today are themselves leaders. At Last Door we have strived to carry on the legacy (as we know it) that Jim gave - love, fairness, abstinence, family, community, laughter, freedom to be yourself and acceptance.  We were grateful to have reconnected with Jim before he passed. This was a man who accomplished something important in his life and his passing should be noted by Last Door for the integral role he played in our inception and in our principles of recovery.


Thanks for All the memories,


Louise and Dave


NDP MLA Dawn Black, NDP MP Fin Donnell and MP Peter Julian meet with the Last Door Team




New Westminster Federal and Provincial Representatives meet at Last Door

New Westminster, BC - June 28, 2010 -Increased demand for addictions treatment and reductions in health care monies to provide long-term residential treatment prompted three New Westminster politicians to meet with the team at Last Door Recovery Society. 

Last month Member of Parliament Fin Donnelly introduced a private members bill to extend EI medical benefits for up to 52 weeks for persons requiring long-term treatment for illnesses such as cancer and addictions.  Today Member of Parliament Peter Julian and MLA Dawn Black joined Mr. Donnelly at the Last Door for the discussion of the private members bill. The agenda also included a round-table review of other possible supports for addiction treatment costs.

 "Clients need treatment beds urgently and over the past 26 years we've developed a recovery program based on successful practice of abstinence based treatment" said Dave Pavlus, Executive Director of Last Door, "but when there are more clients than funded beds people die." The three legislators concurred with the life and death nature of addictive disease and agreed to revert to their caucus colleagues and government counterparts to find appropriate solutions to funding addictions treatment so that every Canadian has an equal chance for recovery as do professionals like doctors, pilots or firefighters.   

Areas of discussion included support  for treatment,  including an outright capital grant for facility financing;  streamlining referrals of federal and provincial clients  directly to Last Door rather than to out of province or country facilities.  Mr. Julian indicated that, "I am here because the atmosphere and energy at your fund-raiser was inspiring and genuine" while Fin Donnelly added "There is something very integral about what you do"

"People know that if they need treatment that works Last Door is the place to go," said Dawn Black, "however we need to break through the models of funding."

The next steps involve review of the government cost per day for a using addict in terms of court, crime, lost productivity, medical and institutionalization costs and compare those figures to the significant savings afforded government and ultimately society as a whole when an addict receives appropriate addiction treatment. 

Last Door has been providing residential addiction treatment services for 26 years. Services include 10 Youth and 20 Adult Community Care Licensed beds, 40 private beds and 24 transitional living spaces spread over 5 facilities in New Westminster, B.C. In 2009 alone Last Door provided over 21,120 hours of counseling,  served 96,120 meals, delivered 1,508 group sessions and provided over 15,000 bed days of treatment for individuals and families.

Nick Ringma









 In the News 
Keep your eyes open for upcoming issues of BC Business Magazine and 24 hours Magazine.  Last Door will be profiled in two upcoming feature articles.
  • BC Business Magazine will focus on the Business of Drug Treatment in BC.
  • 24 Hours Magazine will focus on families in Recovery

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Are you thinking about Planned Giving?  Everyone benefits from the power of a Planned Gift- you, your family and your charity. Of course, we want to ensure that each of these groups receives the maximum benefit possible; this is why Last Door Recovery Society offers a wide range of Planned Giving arrangements.  Please call 604-525-9771 to organize your gift giving.  Learn more about Planned Giving by clicking here 

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Thank you for taking the time to read our June edition of our monthly emailed newsletter.  To read past newsletters click here.
Please forward this newsletter on to people you may  think would be happy to hear from Last Door.
Giuseppe Ganci
Last Door Recovery Society Public Relations
T: 604-525-9771
F: 604-525-3896