Former All-American & NBA Player Addresses Substance Use Prevention
(AMSTERDAM, NY) --- In an effort to educate the public on the dangers of substance use, Montgomery County Public Health hosted basketball legend Chris Herren Thursday night at the Amsterdam High School auditorium.
“We know addiction does not discriminate. It impacts people of all walks of life and demographics,” Montgomery County Public and Mental Health Director Sara Boerenko said. “Having Chris speak to our community was vital to us being able to open the lines of communication on a still stigmatized crisis. If we are able to help one person, one family, by hosting this event, I consider that a slam dunk.”
Herren, from Fall River, Massachusetts, was an All-American, broke scoring records and was recruited by the nation’s top colleges. Herren realized his lifelong dream of playing in the NBA when he was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in 1999 and then traded to his hometown team, the Boston Celtics, before losing his career and almost his family to the disease of addiction. In long term recovery since 2008, Herren inspires people to start the conversation on wellness and educate themselves on the disease of addiction.
Nearly 100 community members filled the auditorium and listened to Herren share his recovery journey. The program started with basketball highlight reels and progressed into a serious conversation about the bad decisions that led him into addiction.
Former professional basketball player Chris Herren pictured Thursday speaking about recovery at the Amsterdam High School auditorium.
Public Health Program Coordinator, Allison Snell, who organized the event, said having Chris speak is something she hopes will really benefit the community.
“To have Chris in Amsterdam speaking to our community is a big win in my eyes,” Snell said. “If we can save one person from going down the road of addiction or help someone to recovery I will consider it a great accomplishment for our department."
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