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Community walks bring awareness to drug crisis in Campbell River

Participants hear from people with lived experience
Participants in the Comox Valley Walk With Me series. Photo by Nadine Bariteau

A series of community walks will be bringing awareness to the toxic drug crisis in Campbell River starting on Sept. 25.

The Walk With Me project, originally started in the Comox Valley, is a community-engaged research project asking “how has the toxic drug crisis impacted you and your community?”

Over the past three months, people with lived and living experience, front-line workers and family members affected by the drug crisis recorded their stories, which were woven into “audio journeys” to help bring a local awareness to the crisis.

Starting on Saturday, Sept. 25 and running until Oct. 30, the community is invited to come to Spirit Square to join in guided walks through downtown Campbell River and listen to stories collected in the sessions through wireless headsets. After the walk, participants will be welcomed to a circle where they will be fed around a fire and given the opportunity to reflect on those experiences.

Project Director Sharon Karsten says it is “a way to tap into the wisdom of those involved first-hand in this crisis, to connect across community lines and to try out ideas for community, systems and policy change.”

The project is run by the Comox Valley Art Gallery, Thompson Rivers University, The Campbell River Community Action Team, AVI Health and Community Services and the Kwakiutl District Council.

Walks are free of charge, and are held from 10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. and 12:30 p.m. - 2 p.m. Those interested can register at

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