LAKEWOOD – Area residents wanting to learn more about the effort to fight the heroin epidemic and reduce the number of fatal overdoses in our community may want to attend a community discussion later this week.
Wednesday, Aug. 31 is International Overdose Awareness day and in conjunction, Evergreen Health Services is teaming up with the Chautauqua Mall to host an event intended to educate the public about drug use and also create awareness that an overdose can happen to anyone.
“Overdose isn’t something that people talk about, but, according to the CDC, it’s the leading cause of accidental death in our country. Overdose Awareness Day gives us all an opportunity to reflect on the practical ways that we can prevent overdose in our community,” said organizer Ian Eastman from Evergreen Health. “If you know the facts about drugs, and what to do if you see someone experiencing an overdose, you can save lives.”
Eastman said the event will feature a panel discussion with several participants.
“We’re going to have various organizations that help with addiction services that will be there from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. So if you want to come a little earlier and stay a little late to talk with those organizations you can,” Eastman said. “The program itself goes from 6 to 7 p.m. We have Dr. Robert Berke from Family Health Medical Services speaking. We also have Jamestown Police Department Chief Harry Snellings, Julie Franco of the Chautauqua Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Council, and Steven Cobb from the Mental Health Association.”
Eastman said International Overdose Day originated in 2001 in Australia, and has been observed annually by communities around the world for 15 years. Evergreen Health, a healthcare provider that specializes in substance user health and overdose education and prevention, is bringing the event to Jamestown as a response to the rapid increase in overdose deaths throughout the region.
Again, the panel discussion will begin at 6 p.m. in the center of Chautauqua Mall. There will be seating available for the public.
For more information, you can call (716) 763-1823 or visit chautauquamall.com.