The focus was fun but the Discovery House Father’s Day barbecue on Sunday afternoon also had a more serious message.
“Our motto is returning fathers to children and sons to families so that is why we are participating today,” said Jerome Abraham, executive director at Discovery House.
Abraham said the event is a chance to give back because Discovery House is a community-funded organization. The men staying at their two homes in Penticton all helped out at the community barbecue, he said.
“(Addiction) is really hard and creates breaks in the family. We have a lot of guys who are involved in family reconciliation and trying to get back in their kids’ lives and they are trying to get back in their family’s lives as sons. That’s one of the things besides addiction recovery that we provide,” he said.
In its eighth year, the event is also a fundraiser. The dunk tank raises money for the men’s recovery centre. This year, Mayor John Vassilaki took part to help raise money.
Trisha Highley is with Moms Stop the Harm, a network of Canadian families whose loved ones died from drug-related issues. She said events like this help create more kind and caring communities.
“We’re all here today to support recovery in our community,” she said. “There’s a huge population of men that have lost their lives to the opioid catastrophe. The sheer volume of human beings that have lost their lives is now evident. We are here as a call to action.”
As well as the dunk tank, the Father’s Day community barbecue at Skaha Lake Park featured a bouncy castle, children’s pirate games and events, road hockey game, music and dance and a community market.
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Reporter, Penticton Western News
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