International Overdose Awareness Day is a global event held on 31 August each year, which aims towards raising awareness of overdose and breaking down the stigma associated with drug-related deaths. Families and friends who have lost a loved one or suffered a lasting disability as a result of drug overdose are also acknowledged. The campaign promotes awareness about overdose, one of the world's most serious public health issues, and encourages action and conversation around evidence-based overdose prevention and drug policy.
The goals of International Overdose Awareness Day are:
To educate community members about fatal and non-fatal overdoses.
To create a safe atmosphere for individuals to openly mourn loved ones, perhaps for the first time, without feeling guilty or ashamed.
To offer basic information about the range of available support services.
To educate individuals worldwide about the dangers of overdosing.
To engage the broadest possible audience in International Overdose Awareness Day events and to promote non-denominational participation.
To avoid and mitigate the harm caused by drugs by promoting evidence-based policy and practice.
To deliver a strong message to current and former drug users about their worth.
To spark debate on overdose prevention and drug policy.
You can help by participating online or at a community-wide event. Several ideas include:
Educating yourself about drug overdose.
Posting a tribute in remembrance of a loved one.
Sharing helpful overdose information on social media.
Hosting your own event with loved ones to raise awareness.
Attending an event in your area.