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Breeze Botanicals and 54 Green Acres Compassionate Care Program

"For every human illness, somewhere in the world there exists a plant which is the cure."

The philosopher and teacher Rudolf Steiner once said, “For every human illness, somewhere in the world there exists a plant which is the cure.”

Our planet has an abundance of flora with medicinal benefits. Breeze Botanicals, Botanical Apothecary and Cannabis dispensary, with locations in both Ashland and Gold Hill, feature herbs from alfalfa leaf to yerba santa and a plethora of options in between – including our beloved Cannabis.

The benefits of Cannabis are highly recognized at Breeze Botanicals. They were (after all) the very first OLCC-licensed recreational retailer, driven by a passion to share the plant with the people. More specifically: Veterans. When Breeze first opened, it began a compassion program to ensure that those who used Cannabis as medicine had a safe place to find it.

Founder and CEO Brie Malarkey wants to give back to those who have already given so much, so she works tirelessly to get medicine into the hands of those that need it most. Working side-by-side with General Manager Sam Schuh, they look to bring affordable Cannabis to Veterans. Schuh is a former ROTC member and granddaughter of a Veteran, while Malarkey is passionate about the healing power of plants and truly believes that this specific group of people, who have done so much for us, deserve some relief.

Their commitment to taking care of veterans sparked the interest of Vin Deschamps, owner of 54 Green Acres Farm. Deschamps has family and friends who have served, and felt very close to the situation.

The relationship between Breeze Botanicals and 54 Acres has been in place for years. But with the effects of the pandemic still looming overhead, Deschamps decided that he wanted to do something a little different. So, he donated 20 pounds of Cannabis from 54 Green Acres’ organic, sungrown farm to be dispersed to Veterans at the lowest cost possible.

Many Veterans fear getting their medical Cannabis cards because they don’t want to take a chance of losing their federally-funded assistance. While the OLCC allows facilities to give (free) products to medical patients, taking care of someone without a medical card can be a little trickier, legally speaking. After extensive research, Breeze developed a compassion program that can take care of Veterans with or without a medical card, while maintaining compliance with OLCC rules.

Word of mouth is important in the Cannabis industry and programs such as this rely highly on the recommendations of other patrons. Breeze Botanicals features a “compassion bin” in both dispensaries – where they receive donations from customers or OLCC-compliant producers/processors that want to help Veterans in their community.

The people behind Breeze Botanicals and 54 Green Acres are representations of the love and humanity that is the backbone of the Cannabis community. You can find out more information about the compassion program on their website, or stop by in person and have a conversation with the crew at one of their two locations.

Photos by @_siraynot_

This article was originally published in the September 2022 issue of Oregon Leaf.

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