Weed workshop introduces Ont. seniors to world of medical marijuana

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ediblesThere might be something special about grandma’s latest batch of brownies.

A new monthly workshop north of Toronto is helping seniors navigate the world of medical marijuana.

“Our demographic is middle-aged to older people,” Rick Gillman of CanCann Consulting told CTV Barrie. “We do have lots of people in their 80s and even one I know in their 90s who are successfully using cannabis and having great results with it.”

Marijuana has been used to treat a diverse array of conditions, such as PTSD, epilepsy and arthritis. From general information about cannabis, as the plant is also called, to ways it can be turned into edibles, oils and tinctures, the workshop covered all aspects of using marijuana as a medicine.

People also showed up to tell others how the plant has helped them.

“I came today to share my experiences,” cancer survivor Jennifer May told CTV Barrie. “This excites me… to see how people are reacting, and it’s positive.”

The workshop was held Saturday at The Barn Co-op, a community hub in Meaford, Ont. So many people came out that it was standing room only. The workshops have proven to be so popular that they are now being held on a monthly basis.

The events even feature a cannabis cooking class.

“I’m learning that it’s actually not a hard process at all,” Midland, Ont. resident Mary Ellen told CTV Barrie. “It looks like it’s something I could do myself.”

Organizers say the stigma of using the plant is now fading away.

“(That) allows us to share our stories, our experiences, with one another,” presenter Fred Harris said.

In Canada, it has been legal to use marijuana for medical purposes since 2001. Currently, the only legal way to obtain the plant, outside of growing it yourself, is through a licensed producer after receiving written approval from a health care practitioner.

The federal Liberals, who campaigned on the promise of legalizing recreational marijuana, are expected to unveil legislation to this effect this spring.

With files from CTV Barrie

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