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Jerry Allison, one of the people in “Cultivate Compassion,” speaks at the Oct. 6 premiere event.

The Gorge Wellness Alliance (GWA) has released an 8 minute documentary film, “Cultivate: Compassion,” on its website, www.gorgewellnessalliance.org/film. The film has Spanish subtitles.

The film, produced by professional filmmaking company CoenFilm, features six Gorge locals speaking to their experiences with mental health conditions, including drug/alcohol problems.

The film premiered to a packed house at the Columbia Center for the Arts at a free public showing on Oct. 6. 

“We thank the community coming out and supporting us at the Oct 6 premiere event,” said Lucas O’Laughlin, behavioral health manager for One Community Health, founder and a key funder of the GWA.

“If you missed the premiere event, the film is now available online. We created it with the intent of free and open use for the benefit of all in building awareness and dialogue around this important topic. We know that several schools and recovery programs are already planning to use the film, and we hope that others do so as well. Please watch the film online, share with your friends and family, and feel free to host public showings and discussions. And, drop us a line if you do.”

The film forms part of a larger, Gorge-wide campaign aimed at reducing the stigma surrounding mental health and substance abuse issues, including an online social media campaign targeting youth.

Anyone with questions about the GWA or the film can contact the GWA’s Project Manager, Colleen Regalbuto, at 503-560-6402 or cregalbuto@hotmail.com.

About The Gorge Wellness Alliance

The Gorge Wellness Alliance (GWA) is a collaborative group of Gorge-based health advocates and community members. Together, they strive to address the challenges of mental health, including substance abuse, to promote compassion for every person in the Gorge and create a region-wide stigma-free culture.