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August 31 is Overdose Awareness Day

by | Aug 24, 2020 | In the News

NVRH Prevention Services and Kingdom Recovery Center create space to remember loved ones

 ST. JOHNSBURY, VT (August 24, 2020) – Local communities in the Northeast Kingdom and around the world are coming together on Monday, August 31 to remember those who have died or suffered permanent injury due to drug overdose. Observed every year on August 31, International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) seeks to create better understanding of overdose, reduce the stigma of drug-related deaths and create change that reduces the harms associated with drug use.

“We want the community to know that we’re here for them,” NVRH VP Marketing and Community Health Improvement Laural Ruggles said. “That’s why it’s so important NVRH Prevention Services and the Kingdom Recovery Center acknowledge this day by being an active and engaged presence in the community.”

This local Overdose Awareness Day event will be held on Monday, August 31, 2020, from 3 – 6 p.m. at the corner of Eastern Ave. and Pearl Street (the south end of the Star Theater parking lot). Refreshments will be served. There will be information about recovery services and treatment options. Vermont CARES will be providing overdose prevention education about the signs of an overdose, the use of Narcan and the Good Samaritan Law. There will also be a memorial table for community members to light a candle in remembrance of those lost to an overdose.

All staff and guests on the property will be required to wear a face covering and maintain social distance.

In 2019, there were 874 IOAD events of all kinds, held in 39 countries. By holding an event this year, the people of St. Johnsbury and the surrounding communities are joining themselves to a global movement of understanding, compassion, and change.

People and communities came together to raise awareness of one of the world’s most urgent public health crises – one that, unfortunately, is only getting worse. According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime’s most recent World Annual Drug Report, 585,000 people around the world died as a result of drug use in 2017.

“We are putting on this event to honor our loved ones who have died or have been injured because of an overdose,” Executive Director of the Kingdom Recovery Center Cynthia Boyd said. “By coming together to remember them, we stand together to say that more needs to be done to end overdose in our community.”

In the event of rain, this Overdose Awareness Day event will be moved to a Zoom platform. Please contact the Kingdom Recovery Center at 802-751-8520 to get the Zoom information.

The mission of the Kingdom Recovery Center is to enhance the social and spiritual lives of those who have been affected by alcohol, drugs and other addictions by providing a safe, substance free and welcoming environment for individuals and groups seeking to strengthen their recovery and promote healthy lifestyles.

The Kingdom Recovery Center is located at 297 Summer Street in St. Johnsbury in the birthplace and childhood home of Dr. Bob Smith, co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous. For further information about their services or IOAD, contact Cindy Boyd, Executive Director, at 802-751-8520.

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