PHS Community Services Society

PHS Community Services Society

September 23, 2013 19:26 ET

A Recovery Road Trip: "Stay Alive Long Enough to Start Living"

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Sept. 23, 2013) - PHS, the operator's of InSite, North America's only supervised injection site, are sponsoring Donovan to travel to the cities and communities of Canada to talk about his first hand experience of stabilizing his life through InSite.

Donovan overdosed several times while injecting at Vancouver's InSite supervised injection facility, where the staff intervened, saving his life. As he travels, he will engage with fellow addicts, frontline health care workers and the families of active drug users, discussing how the principles of harm reduction gave him the chance to start living again.

Donovan Patrick Mahoney is many things: a Kwaguilth First Nations child given up for adoption after both parents died from addiction, an ex-homeless drug user, a survivor of a 21 day overdose coma, and a stand up comedian. Now a photographer and documentarian, he is driven to share with Canadians his tale of survival on the streets of Vancouver╩╝s Downtown Eastside. Donovan will use his fearlessness as a performer and his hard won compassion as a surviving addict to ask one simple question: would I have made it out alive if I had found myself in this city?

Donovan is one of the 'lucky ones. He's an addict who came close to death while using, but was kept alive long enough to get sober. He has emerged from a decade-long addiction without any of the blood-borne diseases such as HIV or Hepatitis common to longtime IV drug users. But Donovan does not believe he is where he is today because of luck. He is healthy and sober thanks to the principles of harm reduction compassionately applied by front line health care workers at Vancouver╩╝s In Site. He is scheduled to speak at these events:

Toronto: Tuesday September 23, 2013
Queen West Community Health Centre 168 Bathurst St.
Co-sponsor: Toronto Harm Reduction Alliance and the Toronto Drug Users Union
3:30-5:00pm
Montreal: September 25
Co-sponsor: Cactus Montréal
1300, rue Sanguinet, Montréal
3:30 pm
Winnipeg: September 27
Co-sponsor: The 595
University of Winnipeg Lockhart Hall 1L11
1 - 2PM
Saskatoon: October 01 - TBA
University of Saskatchewan

Contact Information

  • Media contacts:
    Interviews: Donovan Mahoney
    +1 (604) 600-5482

    Russell Maynard
    PHS Program Director - InSite
    778.889.2201