Project Second Start will host another Stop Heroin Rally in Germantown to raise awareness about the growing problem and provide treatment information.
People are encouraged to make signs to share their message. The event will include information about treatment programs, community resources, opportunities to speak with Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse consolers and recovering addicts.
It will also feature a fundraising brat fry and guest speakers at 11 a.m., including Anthony Alvarado and Douglas Darby from Rise Together and Chad Sabora, co-founder of the Missouri Network for Opiate Reform and Recovery.
The Missouri Network for Opiate Reform and Recovery, based in St. Louis, is a nonprofit organization to promote opiate reform through legislative policy reform and provide help for opiate recovery, which includes housing, employment and legal assistance.
“I’m well-known in this world. I was asked to come to the rally,” Sabora said. Sabora, who is a recovering heroin addict, said his organization talks about opiate and heroin addiction to destroy the stigma.
“Awareness is awareness. We’re trying to send a message out there that there’s help available,” Sabora said. “People do recover from heroin. It’s no different than any other disease. Because it’s involved in something illegal people are scared to talk about it,” he added.
Alvarado and Darby are both recovering addicts. They speak at high schools, middle schools, rehab facilities, prevention groups and prisons.
The mission of the organization is to bring a face and voice to recovery by sharing stories, building advocacy, helping people and educating the youth.
Alvarado said the organization has done 54 speeches, speaking to 6,000 people in about eight months. “We’re bringing education and awareness. It’s important to continue to hammer down a path and break the stigma. This is not something that discriminates,” he said.
Alvarado said the rally is important to bring together people with different perspectives. “Now people are concerned because it affects all kinds of different people. Rallies need to take place. People are paying attention to it. It’s funny the people are standing up. We’re not waiting anymore,” Alvarado said.
Rise Together will also be at the Washington County Community Forum on Heroin that at 7 p.m. in the West Bend high schools auditorium, 1305 E. Decorah Road.