Canadian soldiers in the Ottawa Valley region will be be able to have better access to medical cannabis in order to treat their trauma. A new chapter of Marijuana For Trauma has been opened in Petawawa, which is the first in eastern Ontario. MFT is a veteran owned and operated company that helps to provide alternative medicine to Canada’s Armed Forces, veterans, and civilians. The group, based in New Brunswick, has been providing this service for over two years and this new location will mark the sixth chapter and seventh office opened so far.

Cory D’Andrea is the vice president of the Petawawa chapter, and he says that company operates on a veterans helping veterans principle. “This is a clinic to help veterans, first responders and civilians to get the support and treatment they need,” D’Andrea says.

“We want to assist them in getting legal coverage for medical marijuana through the Ministry of Veterans Affairs and other sources,” says Chad Kendall, manager of the Petawawa office.

He says that MFT helps connect clients to doctors who are friendly to the concept of using medical cannabis, helps them fill out medical paperwork, and provides activities such as peer groups and yoga to assist soldiers who are looking for alternative treatment. Most of the staff is volunteer, excluding administrators, and the profits are reinvested back into veterans programs that they are putting together.

According to Kendall, “We believe, and facts show, that medical marijuana provides great relief alternatively to traditional pharmaceuticals. Many of the drug regimens have side effects which can include suicidal ideation, erectile dysfunction, numbness, etc. Marijuana shares none of these, and with so many veterans committing suicide, we believe that cannabis has its place in our treatment plan.” Kendall himself is currently using cannabis to treat his PTSD.

D’Andrea is in agreement, as he is also a veteran treating his PTSD with cannabis. He gave up on conventional pharmaceuticals after experiencing bad side effects, and chose to go with a natural alternative.

So far MFT has helped over 500 people access medical cannabis to treat their PTSD and pain relief. Fabian Henry, CEO of the company, says that their main focus is dealing with trauma which is why they locate so close to military bases. He too found medical cannabis as a way to treat his PTSD after serving in Afghanistan. He founded the first MFT in Gagetown, N.B. In 2013, deciding that he wanted to help others who were in the same situation as him.

More and more veterans are discovering that medical cannabis is the optimal form of treatment for PTSD as well as other physical, mental, and emotional pains.