Aug. 31 is International Overdose Awareness Day, the world’s largest annual campaign to end overdose, the cause of more deaths in the US than breast cancer, guns and car accidents combined. Lake County has the highest rate of overdose in California, standing at two times the opioid overdose death rate of California. 58 people died of an overdose in Lake County within a single year. That is the size of a graduating Lake County High School class.
To honor Lake County lives lost to overdose, and to support overdose prevention activism, Hope Rising, SafeRx, the Lake County Department of Public Health, and Lake County Department of Behavioral Health Services, are hosting the second annual International Overdose Awareness Day event on Saturday, Aug. 27th, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in Keeling Park, Nice.
Community partners and local agencies will be providing information and access to their resources.
To highlight the grievous losses, community members who have lost loved ones due to overdose are invited to pay tribute to them by creating a poster board headstone at the event, to be placed alongside others who have suffered similar losses.
The event will also include a free training in Narcan, a life saving overdose reversal drug.
In addition to remembrance of those whose lives ended prematurely, the purpose of this event is to overcome the stigma often associated with overdose, and to stimulate conversations around the challenges of addiction with key agencies and community members.
Event partners will provide education on the science of addiction, Lake County’s overdose statistics and guidance on how to access local support resources.