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Jay Barnard transforms into Chef Recovery at Kenora's Boathouse restaurant

A chef at a Kenora restaurant will be part of next year's national Bell Let's Talk mental health awareness campaign.

Boosting men's mental health at heart of Kenora workshop program

A chef at a Kenora restaurant will be part of next year's national Bell Let's Talk mental health awareness campaign.

Jay Barnard, who brands himself as Chef Recovery, will partner with Shea Emry, a CFL player with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, to host mental health awareness workshops in Kenora.

Barnard said he hopes that his story of overcoming addiction will inspire others.
Jay Barnard says he hopes that his story of overcoming addiction will inspire others. (@ChefRecovery/Twitter)
Shea Emry, a CFL player with the Saskatchewan Roughriders, and co-founder of The Wellmen Project, will host mental health awareness workshops in Kenora, along with Chef Jay Barnard. (wellmen.org)

His recipe in reaching out is simple: he has taken his recovery and his kitchen skills — and put them together.

"I love food. I love ingredients. I love the hustle in the kitchen. I love the menu," Barnard said.

"The recovery part is that, over seven years ago, I got clean and sober."

Barnard will host the workshops at the Boathouse restaurant for two days, starting January 21, 2016. He hopes to bring men's mental health awareness to the forefront.

"I take recipes from my recovery, and make dishes out of them."

From recipes like "grilled powerless trout, fearless chicken wings, and forever sobering spicy shrimp slaw," Barnard springboards into talking about mental health and addictions issues.

Emry — a Canadian Football League player who sustained a concussion in 2011 — will join Barnard for the talks. Emry runs an organization known as the Wellmen Project, which is designed to empower men.

"Shea's going to be coming to Kenora ... and then we're going to have basically a conference at the Boathouse," Barnard said.

"It's just going to be geared towards men's mental health, the stuff about men's mental health, how we can help you, how we are, and people opening up and talking all about men's mental health."

Watch Jay Barnard's presentation on Tedx Talks

Clarifications

  • A previous version of this story said that Shea Emry was a former football player. It also said the event takes place on January 21st. It begins on that date and runs for two days.
    Aug 25, 2015 10:57 AM ET

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