International Overdose Awareness Day 2023: Recognizing those people who go UNSEEN
Every year on August 31st, we come together to observe THE International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD), a day dedicated to shedding light on the impact of overdose within our families, among our friends, and throughout our communities. This year’s theme, “Recognizing Those People Who Go Unseen,” serves as a reminder of the many individuals affected by overdose, even if they aren’t immediately visible in the midst of this crisis.
The theme encompasses a broad spectrum of unseen people, including:
Family and Friends: Those who have lost loved ones to overdose, carrying the heavy burden of grief while advocating for change.
Healthcare Workers and First Responders: The dedicated professionals who tirelessly provide care and support during overdose emergencies.
Prevention Advocates: Individuals and groups actively working to prevent overdose tragedies by raising awareness and implementing life-saving measures.
The IOAD 2023 campaign aims to enlighten people about the hidden impacts of overdose, encourage education on overdose response, and inspire engagement with policymakers to enact enduring, life-preserving policy changes.
To get involved in IOAD 2023 and become a part of this vital movement, here are some resources to guide you:
The IOAD website: https://www.overdoseday.com/ has information on the campaign, resources for getting involved, and a list of events happening around the world.
The CDC’s IOAD toolkit: https://www.cdc.gov/drugoverdose/awareness/ioad.html provides free resources, including key IOAD messages, social media content, and patient and provider educational materials.
The DEA’s IOAD page: https://www.dea.gov/international-overdose-awareness-day has information on the history of IOAD and how you can get involved.
So, how can you play a part in ending the overdose? Here are a few ideas:
Start Conversations: Talk openly with friends and family about the risks of overdose and strategies for prevention.
Engage Locally: Get involved in your community’s efforts to prevent overdose and support those affected.
Support Organizations: Back organizations dedicated to ending the overdose epidemic through donations, volunteering, or spreading awareness.
Advocate for Change: Advocate for policies that prioritize reducing overdose deaths in your community and beyond.
Remember, we’re all in this together, and together, we can make a meaningful difference in the fight against overdose. Always keep in mind that you are not alone in this journey.