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Since 2007, drug overdoses have claimed the lives of 11,863 Virginians. To honor those deaths, support the survivors, and prevent future loss of life, a trio of local groups will mark International Overdose Awareness Day on Aug. 30.

Germanna Community College, Be Well Rappahannock, and the Rappahannock Area Community Services Board have teamed up to increase awareness of the opioid epidemic and to empower individuals to save lives. The Aug. 30 event will feature two trainings: an overview of the problem and a presentation on how to reverse opioid overdoses using naloxone. Both will be held on Germanna’s Fredericksburg campus in Room 134 of the Workforce Building.

Carmen Greiner, director of Lighthouse Counseling of Fredericksburg, will introduce participants to opiate addiction, address treatment approaches, and suggest ways to help. This two-hour training session will run from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Register online for this training at http://bit.ly/OverdoseDay.

REVIVE instructor shows the medical dummy to the class.
REVIVE! training teaches life saving techniques.

A 90-minute REVIVE! training will follow at 1 p.m. Sherry Norton-Williams with RACSB will teach participants to recognize and respond to an opioid overdose. Those who complete the course will be able to obtain a free dose of naloxone, the lifesaving antidote to opioid overdose. Register online for this training at http://bit.ly/OverdoseDay2

All participants are encouraged to wear purple in support of International Overdose Day. Held in August each year, the observance aims to raise awareness, reduce the stigma of drug-related deaths, remember those who have died, and stimulate discussion about prevention.

“International Overdose Awareness Day is an opportunity for those who have lost loved ones to remember and reflect. It is also a time to reduce stigma and prevent future deaths by supporting education and advocacy efforts.”

Lorraine M. Martin, president and CEO of the National Safety Council

Be Well Rappahannock is a coalition of local organizations working together to build a healthier community in the Fredericksburg area.

For more details about the events at Germanna, email Alicia Landes at alandes@germanna.edu.

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