DDN Sept_2022 September 2022 - Page 20



This year ’ s Recovery Games is on course to be the best yet , says Stuart Green

The Recovery Games is back , bigger , bolder , louder and brighter than ever before . We have some exciting new themed games and developments this year , and there ’ ll be some amazing street entertainers wandering through the audience . We ’ ll also be blending an amazing music and dance set with the

games on a bespoke stage to bring a festival feel to the day , managed by Drywave who are quickly becoming the leading sober nightlife experience in Manchester , if not the UK .
The journey over the years has been amazing . When the games started in 2013 at a local water park , little did we know that this was the beginning of recovery
activism and contagion . We saw 250 people attend the games that year and realised that we had some key ingredients which tied into the five ways of wellbeing and CHIME , and the last on-land event saw in excess of 1,000 people attend despite the rain .
Year-on-year the games have grown , and as we ’ ve added more and more events and activities
we ’ ve had to increase the team events to four teams competing in each . There are currently 40 teams now actively taking part in a myriad of events and fun challenges .
The games have been presented on an international stage at the CND ( Commission On Narcotic Drugs ) at the UN in Vienna , and consequently we saw teams from Bosnia and Sweden take part in the


Fred ’ s poetry is helping him connect with his community and move forward

Fred Mansfield is a volunteer for Red Rose Recovery ( North Locality ) and is a wellloved member of the team . He uses his lived experiences of addiction , recovery and relapse to write poems to support both himself and others within the recovery community .

‘ The reason I write poetry is that it gives me that peace , it gets everything out of me ,’ he says . It ’ s easier for me to put it down on paper than it is to speak to someone . I think it also comes out better on paper than when I say it out loud . Plus I know that it helps people and that ’ s all I want really . It helps my recovery because it gives me that satisfaction .’
Here is an extract from one of Fred ’ s poems , which he says is ‘ about me and my feelings before , during and after relapse and how it affected others around me ’.
I believe I ’ m one of the lucky ones You could say I love being saved I suppose But only with the help given to me From organisations , especially Red Rose Now I usually have a beaming smile As it is rare to see me looking with sadness Or I ’ m unsure I would ’ ve been stuck in the madness Each of us knew it wouldn ’ t be easy Like using feathers to try squash a grape Yet with all the help that ’ s out there now Addicts can now find an escape
So visit any town or city Stop anywhere to have a look around You can spot the addicts from a mile off They ’ re the ones with their heads to the ground It doesn ’ t matter what you were using Prescription drugs , illegal ones even beer To break free you have to be brave Have the courage to take on our fear