Yesterday the Recovery Street Film Festival officially launched in London. The festival was opened by Rosanna O’ Connor, Director of Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco at Public Health England and Mitch Winehouse , founder of the drugs and alcohol charity The Amy Winehouse Foundation, to a packed Market Hall in Borough Market, London.
Organised by a consortium of addiction treatment providers including Phoenix Futures, Turning Point, CRI, Blenheim and Action on Addiction, supported by Public Health England, Alcohol Concern and Drugscope, the festival aims to celebrate and promote recovery from substance misuse.
The launch saw the premier of the official festival films on the subject of recovery, chosen by a panel of film professionals including award winning documentary film maker Emma Wakefield, film producer Lisa Bryer, whose credits include The Last King of Scotland and psychologist, writer and documentary film maker David Cohen.
Mitch Winehouse also announced the official festival winner, ‘Harry’s Story’, made by the Community Film Unit.
Gareth Bowler, one of the finalists said; “It is great to see ‘Sober’ touring the country, being seen by so many people from so many places. I wanted the film to reach as many people as possible; this is about the best reach it can get.”
Paul Scully, another finalist said; "I have wanted to "shout out loud" how great it feels to come out the other side from my addiction. This felt like the perfect opportunity to show and tell others that there is hope and that you don't have to live your life in darkness!"
The festival will now move to a number of ‘pop up’ locations on the streets of Cardiff, Birmingham, Liverpool and Glasgow; returning to London to close.
Well done and thanks to all the finalists and everyone who submitted a film, each and every film shows that recovery is possible and everyone deserves a future.