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A new chapter for MADD

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Bringing awareness to the dangers of impaired driving is one of the main goals of Mothers against Drunk Driving (MADD). The Prince Albert chapter of MADD, despite only starting up a few short months ago, is making a strong appearance in the community.

Volunteers of MADD held a barbeque in Prince Albert on Saturday afternoon to draw awareness and to raise funds for the organization.

Community leader, Trina Cockle, witnessed the accident which took the life of Ben Darchuk in 2012. In wanting to help somehow, she created the group.

“There’s way too many people that have lost their lives in our community so we need to start doing something about it,” she said.

Della Hicks, a volunteer with the group, said that she has been involved with organizations against drunk driving ever since she was hit head on by an impaired driver in 1983. Three people in the other car were killed at the scene.

Hicks saw Cockle trying to get MADD started in Prince Albert on Facebook and wanted to come and help get the message out to the community.

“Something has to be done. People are still getting hurt, people are still being killed. It’s been 33 years and I’m still on crutches. Some people just don’t seem to understand that when you’re in a car accident, it just doesn’t go away the next day,”

Police officers were set up next to the barbeque to support MADD in bringing awareness to their program.

“MADD is a well-established program. It’s got a lot of support and Police believe in the program and want to show their support,” said Staff Sgt. Dave Schluff.

A table was set up with a variety of items from the Police Service, including fatal vision goggles which show different levels of intoxication.

Cockle said that the feedback throughout the day had been extremely positive.

“We had some family members of Ben’s come out and say hi to us today which really meant a lot to me. We’ve had other people come out to let us know that they want to volunteer as well … and a lot of thank you’s,” she said

About 30 volunteers are in the group. Cockle said that they will continue to boost their profile by participating in upcoming events, such as Project Rid Ribbon which begins in November.

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