SVG Europe, Hazelden Betty Ford, Expand Addiction Support to European Sports Industry

SVG Europe and the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation are collaborating to make it easier for those in the European sports production community to access support in the areas of substance use and mental health.

Hazelden Betty Ford is the largest nonprofit treatment provider of comprehensive inpatient and outpatient addiction, and mental health care, for adults and youth in the world.

“For the past two years, Hazelden Betty Ford and the Sports Video Group in the U.S. have worked closely on a number of initiatives around mental health and substance use,” says Ken Kerschbaumer, SVG, co-executive director. “At the centre of that effort has been a dedicated resource that makes it easy for those to get the help they need. Now, with this new effort, we can also deliver on that promise for our members in Europe as well.”

Adds Bob Poznanovich, Hazelden Betty Ford’s vice president of business development: “The pandemic only increased the need for those in our industry to find quick, viable, and effective support mechanisms; our efforts are designed to help European sports production professionals get the help they need as soon as possible.”

At the centre of this European effort is Hallie Heeg, an international recovery coach with 18 years of expertise in eating disorders, substance use disorders, process addictions, and mental health. Her UK-based organisation – WeRise – partners with the National Health Service and the University of East London in the UK as well as the University of Southern California in the United States.

Hazelden Betty Ford connected WeRise with SVG so that members of SVG Europe would have an accessible go-to resource for substance use and mental health needs.

Hallie can be reached at +44 7411966090 or via email at [email protected]  The WeRise website is

Geoff Mason, Sports Broadcasting Hall of Famer, and co-founder of the SVG|Hazelden Betty Ford partnership adds: “For us to be able to expand our horizon of impact across the Atlantic Ocean is a dream come true.”

The SVG|Hazelden Betty Ford partnership began in 2019 in response to the pandemic and its impact on those in the sports production community. Many were out of work and those that were working found themselves isolated and at greater risk for substance use and mental health issues. That is when Mason, former Fox production leader and Hall of Famer Jerry Steinberg, Kerschbaumer, and Moira McGinley, HBF, VP of development and Chief Development Officer, launched the effort to make it easier for SVG members and sponsors to have dedicated resources (for more details click here to access various resources and more). Mason and Steinberg also launched twice weekly Zoom support meetings that can be accessed at Zoom room IT 850-348-7018 and are held on Tuesdays and Fridays at 10 am EST/3 pm GMT.

In addition to clinical care, Hazelden Betty Ford encompasses:

  • a fully accredited graduate school of addiction studies
  • the largest recovery publishing house in the U.S.
  • a dedicated research center
  • intensive educational programs for medical students and professionals
  • community and school-based prevention programs and services
  • unique family and children’s programs
  • A consulting division, and
  • Influential thought leadership and public advocacy

Learn more at

“The sports production community in Europe has been an important part of helping bring a sense of normalcy to sports fans all around the world during the pandemic,” adds Kerschbaumer. “This joint effort between SVG and Hazelden Betty Ford marks an important milestone in giving those professionals the type of support they deserve.”

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