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Join Horizon at the Chris Maloney Golf Tournament!

People golfing

Join Horizon on June 10th, 2024 at the Chris Maloney Legacy Golf Tournament at Lockport Town & Country Club! The event, organized by the Chris Maloney Legacy Foundation, is held annually in honor and loving memory of Chris Maloney.

We are so grateful for the continued support and partnership from The Chris Maloney Legacy Foundation. Over the years, the foundation has supported wellness initiatives and golf programs at our Horizon Village Campus, supported our Therapy Dog Program, and contributed to our Hilary’s House capital campaign.

We spoke with Deborah Maloney Hicks, President of the Chris Maloney Legacy Foundation, about the foundation’s beginnings and their commitment to Horizon and making a difference.

Would you be able to tell us a bit more about the Chris Maloney Legacy Foundation and how it came to be?

The Chris Maloney Legacy Foundation is a small group of community-minded members who believe that our youth are in crisis. Our mission is to raise awareness of the growing issues surrounding addiction, work with our community using programs geared toward addiction prevention and help provide support in the treatment of this disease. The foundation was “born” from the death of my son, Chris, who struggled with addiction for several years and was, at one time, in treatment with Horizon Health Services.

Is there anything you would like people to know about Chris’ journey through treatment?

Chris’ journey through treatment was not a smooth one. The question of where to go and what to do when the glaring truth of “this is addiction, not something he will grow out of” became more evident. Between insurance, financial obstacles, guilt, shame, and the haze of confusion addiction creates, the journey seemed impossible and doomed. Relapse is a real and probable thing which unfortunately occurred in the spring of 2016 for Chris, ultimately leading to his passing on Father’s Day.

What brought the idea of the Golf Outing to you?

Chris was a great golfer and attended Coastal Carolina University for Pro-Golf Management, only one of nine schools in the country that offered the program at the time. So, in wanting to celebrate his life and his first “Angel” day, we decided to hold a golf tournament at his beloved home course of Lockport Town and Country Club. This celebration has morphed into a yearly event, helping the foundation raise tens of thousands of dollars for many programs throughout WNY.

The funds from the golf tournament have been put to incredible projects and organizations, can you give us some information on how you chose what to put the funds towards and the impact you have seen them make?

We chose to pursue a few different avenues with the funds raised from the tournament. We teamed up with First Tee to implement several programs across schools, summer programs, and more. We were also able to implement programs at the Horizon Village and Kids Escaping Drugs (KED) campuses to introduce patients to the game of golf and the life skills it emphasizes – which fall in line with the skills patients in recovery are learning.

Chris also loved the therapy dogs while in treatment at Horizon, so we reached out to see about sponsoring a dog in his memory through Horizon’s Therapy Dog Program. Over 3 years ago, we welcomed Aurora into the program and our foundation!

The foundation also provided a commitment of funds to Hilary’s House on the Horizon Village Campus. Hilary’s House is a retreat center for patients and their loved ones to connect, heal, and grow in a warm and welcoming environment. The space is used for hosting family programming and visitations which is an essential component of supporting those on their recovery journeys.

If you could tell a family with a loved one that might be struggling, what would you want them to know?

I have had the opportunity to speak about Chris and our experiences as a family at both Horizon Village and KED campuses as well as community functions aiming to educate the public on addiction, recovery, and overdose. If I had one thing to share with anyone reading this, it would be to encourage each of you to be a part of the solution. Addiction doesn’t just afflict the person who is using. Success for the addict is success for all of us. Most importantly, remind your loved ones that the world is a much better place with them in it.

“Sometimes the brightest light comes from the darkest of places.”

Register today to join Horizon at the Chris Maloney Legacy Golf Tournament!