Time to remember loved ones and end overdose
Lake County, OH: Local communities in Lake County and around the world are coming together to remember those who have died or suffered permanent injury due to drug overdose. Observed on the 31st of August every year, International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) seeks to create a better understanding of overdose, reduce the stigma of drug-related deaths, and create change that reduces the harms associated with drug use.
The Lake County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Board will hold awareness events from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in Painesville, Willoughby, Mentor, and Chardon. These events are free and open to everyone. The event locations include:
- Lake-Geauga Recovery Centers
- 9083 Mentor Ave., Mentor
- 209 Center St., Unit E Chardon
- Signature Health Location
- 54 South State St., Painesville
- 38882 Mentor Ave., Willoughby
The event will bring awareness and understanding to the local drug overdose issue. There will be helpful information, NARCAN nasal spray, Deterra Drug Deactivation System Pouches bags will be distributed, and a tree seedling will be given to those that attend the event. The tree seedling can be planted in honor of a specific person or for anyone affected by loss due to overdose. The objective is to provide an opportunity to heal. People and communities come together annually to raise awareness of one of the world’s most urgent public health crises – one that, unfortunately, is only getting worse.
By holding an event this year, the people of Lake County are joining themselves in a global movement for understanding, compassion, and change. In 2021, despite the disruption caused by COVID-19, the world united to hold hundreds of IOAD events of all kinds in at least 37 countries – a phenomenal result. “Overdose can affect anybody and one of the messages of this day is that the people who lose their lives to overdose are our sons, daughters, mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters – they are loved and they are missed,” said Kim Fraser, Executive Director of the ADAMHS Board. According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime’s most recent World Annual Drug Report, nearly half a million people around the world died as a result of drug use in 2019. Early statistics and anecdotal evidence for the 2021 calendar year show that the situation is becoming ever-more critical, exacerbated in many areas by the pandemic decreasing the tolerance of people who use drugs and disrupting both services and the drug supply chain.
International Overdose Awareness Day is convened by Penington Institute, an Australian not-for-profit. The ADAMHS Board plans, funds, monitors, and evaluates services available to Lake County residents dealing with mental illness and or substance-use disorders. https://www.overdoseday.com/