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On Monday, November 3, 2014, CARE (Chemical Awareness, Resources & Education) held its 30th Annual Breakfast at the Omni Hotel.  Approximately 550 guests attended the breakfast with featured speaker and former Boston Celtic’s basketball player, Chris Herren, Honorary Co-chairs Ellen and Clayton Kershaw and Breakfast Chair Shirley Cohn. Together, they helped raise a staggering $220,000 for CARE and the crucial assistance they provide for individuals suffering from drug and alcohol dependencies.

CARE Executive Director Pam Murray kicked off the breakfast with the serenity prayer and welcomed guests as they took their seats. The audience then watched a short, yet inspiring video about several individuals who are now sober thanks to the help of CARE. After the video, Jan Osborn, CARE board chairman, announced the recipient of the Margaret Sharpe Community Service Award, Terry Boyd.

Breakfast Emcee Terry Bentley Hill then took the stage to introduce Chris Herren, who struggled with addiction for much of his basketball career. During the hour-long speech, audience members were captivated by his harrowing stories of substance abuse that lasted 15 years. Herren credited his sobriety to the moment when a counselor told him he should tell his wife to tell his children that he was dead so that he would no longer disappoint and hold them back. Now sober six years, Chris told the audience that he now travels the country sharing his story in hopes of reaching just one person and making an impact in his or her life. Following Chris’ speech, guests stayed well after the breakfast to say “hello” and take pictures with him.

The money raised during the breakfast will help to fund several of CARE’s programs, such as New Directions, Red Ribbon Week, and parenting programs that give parents the tools to connect and communicate with their teens. In addition, the money will allow CARE to continue to inform the community of the risks of drug and alcohol use and abuse and to provide referrals to anyone struggling with addiction.

ABOUT CARE

Established in 1984 as a response to the increasing problems related to drugs and alcohol, CARE (Chemical Awareness, Resources & Education) is a valuable community organization that funds education classes for families struggling with substance abuse and provides speakers for students, parents and educators throughout the greater Dallas area. CARE also serves as a no cost, confidential referral resource for anyone who needs help with alcohol or drug addiction. CARE receives no government funds, but is supported solely through the contributions of individuals, small businesses and proceeds from fundraising events. With that support, CARE is able to serve more than 10,000 families annually. For more info, please call 214.526.8986 or visit http://www.care-dallas.org/.

ABOUT CHRIS HERREN

Herren is a former NBA player who was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in 1999 and was traded to his hometown team, the Boston Celtics in 2000. After battling substance abuse for the majority  of his basketball career, Herren decided to refocus his life and has been alcohol and drug-free since August 1, 2008. Herren shares his journey in his memoir, Basketball Junkie, as well as in numerous interviews throughout the Emmy-nominated ESPN Films documentary Unguarded. Herren also founded Hoop Dreams with Chris Herren, a basketball player development company and The Herren Project, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing treatment and educational programs to those touched by addiction. In 2012, The Herren Project launched a national anti-substance abuse campaign, Project Purple, to encourage people of all ages to stand up to substance abuse.

ABOUT ELLEN AND CLAYTON KERSHAW

Honorary Co-Chairs Ellen and Clayton Kershaw attended Highland Park High School and were married in 2010. Clayton has enjoyed six seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers and is a two-time Cy Young Award and a Roberto Clemente Award recipient. Ellen and Clayton are most inspired by their foundation, Kershaw’s Challenge. The foundation believes in the transformation of at-risk children and communities through the benevolence of others. In 2012, Ellen and Clayton co-authored a book, Arise: Live Out Your Faith and Dreams on Whatever Field You Find Yourself, which talks about baseball, their Christian faith and their humanitarian efforts.

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