Skip to content

Richmond support group offers safe space to mourn loved ones lost to opioid crisis

Healing Hearts allows members to discuss their feelings in a confidential and safe environment
A Richmond support group hopes to provide a safe space for those who lost their loved ones to the opioid crisis.

A Richmond resident is starting a small support group for community members who lost their loved ones to the toxic drug crisis.

The Richmond chapter of Healing Hearts, which is an initiative under Moms Stop the Harm, aims to provide a safe and confidential space for members to discuss their feelings and “just talk,” said organizer Valerie Lamb.

She added that the purpose of the group, which will have up to 10 people, is not to give advice to attendees.

“(The group is) just to give comfort to people who are dealing with their grief over the loss of a loved one,” said Lamb.

Lamb, who lost her daughter to addiction in 2014, said there were no similar groups at the time to provide the much-needed support.

“I felt like a grief counsellor wouldn’t have understood because it’s a totally different situation,” she explained.

She became inspired to start a support group in Richmond after hearing about the demand for such groups in the city.

There isn’t one in Richmond at the moment, said Lamb, and one resident has had to attend one in Vancouver instead.

Lamb hopes to get the group up and running starting Oct. 10 and members will meet once a month from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

According to the latest numbers from B.C. Coroners Service, the province recorded record-high deaths within the first seven months of 2023.

A vigil was held at Garry Point Park last week to mourn the 1,455 lives lost so far in 2023, including two people from Richmond.

For more information and to apply, email [email protected].