Rockin’ run for those at Surrey’s Volken recovery program

SURREY — For some people facing substance abuse issues, running is their anti-drug. For others, it’s music.

For students of the John Volken Academy – a recovery program for young people who have suffered drug and alcohol abuse – it won’t be long until they can merge the two.

On Oct. 26, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Oasis Half Marathon or 10K run is hitting Vancouver’s Stanley Park Seawall, with more than 30 students from the Surrey-based John Volken Academy’s "Team Recovery" participating in the charity run.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Oasis Half Marathon, popular in some U.S. cities but new to western Canada, will help to raise funds and awareness for addiction recovery.

The event will see live bands at different checkpoints throughout the marathon, with headlining band Magic! playing at the finish line.

On Aug. 20, Team Recovery and the John Volken Academy had a kickoff party and "fun run" to celebrate the upcoming event.

"I think the cool part is the students’ feedback in the John Volken Academy," said Gabrielle Steed, an organizer at the John Volken Academy.

"They feel running has become something very therapeutic for them; it’s something they do as a team, it’s something that relieves stress."

More than 30 students in the program received custom-fit running shoes for the event from Brooks Shoes.

"Us being the benefiting charity is that anyone who registers overall can make a donation to the John Volken Academy," said Steed.

"They can sign up specifically to run or walk on the John Volken Academy team. Anybody on the team, of course they wear singlet (that) promotes their recovery, with the JVA logo on it… and they can also fundraise for the team, just to spread awareness of the academy."

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