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“A Light to Remember” Marks International Overdose Awareness Day in Ogden

August 21, 2023

Join in Ogden’s first annual observance of the International Overdose Awareness Day; “A Light to Remember” on August 31, 2023, at the USU Botanical Garden, 1750 Monroe Blvd. beginning at 7 p.m.

“We want to give people an opportunity to remember and celebrate those we’ve lost, or almost lost to overdose,” says Patrick Cox, program director with Utah Support Advocates for Recovery Awareness (USARA). “Many people’s lives have been impacted, and we hope to provide people with information and resources in a way to reduce the stigma and offer them a path to recovery.”

The evening called “A Light to Remember,” is a free community event presented in partnership with the OgdenCAN Substance Prevention Committee, a network of agencies, individuals and organizations working together to improve education and awareness of and reduce the toll of substance use and misuse in the community.  

Weber County has the third highest death rate due to drug overdose in Utah, according to the CDC. See the “Weber-Morgan Health Department’s Community Health Assessment: Opioid Report” which also notes that the number of deaths declined slightly from 2018 to 2019, the most recent statistics available, and that the number of prescriptions dispensed in Weber County decreased by 40 percent from 2016 to 2021.

“One strong protective factor of substance use and suicidality is a sense of belonging or feeling connected,” says Bryce Sherwood, director of Community Health at Weber-Morgan Health Department. “We hope people will take this opportunity to participate in decorating a luminary, learning more about naloxone, participating in the walk of remembrance and memorial wall, and listening to our guest speakers share how their lives have been impacted by opioids. We may grieve alone, but by connecting we can heal together.”

Those who are not able to attend, but would still like to make a luminary for the remembrance walk can pick up a decoration kit in downtown Ogden at USARA, 893 24th Street, Unit A.

The event is being copresented by USARA and USU Extension.

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