Substance abuse education event held in Delphos - Hometownstations.com-WLIO- Lima, OH News Weather Sports

Substance abuse education event held in Delphos

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An educational event was held at the Delphos Fireman's Clubhouse to do just that. An educational event was held at the Delphos Fireman's Clubhouse to do just that.

From what resources are available, to the best way to provide support for those struggling with addiction; Delphos wants to educate their community on every side of substance abuse.

An educational event was held at the Delphos Fireman's Clubhouse to do just that. It is the first put on by the Delphos Addiction, Prevention, and Education Team, a committee designed to get information out to combat drug issues in the area.

"We looked at the situation from a whole, and we understand that there's kind of the immediate situation of preventing overdoses, there are barriers to treatment," said Mark Spieles, a member of the team as well as the CEO of Westwood Behavioral Health. "And what can be done to eliminate those barriers from a financial perspective, transportation, all those kinds of things have been thought about not only by this committee but also in various counties and treatment providers to be able to make treatment more accessible to those who want it."

The team consists of people with addiction and behavioral health services experience as a part of the city's effort to approach the issue from all angles.

"Obviously you want people to get help before it's too late before drug enforcement gets involved," said Mayor Josh Gillespie, who formed the team as a part of a greater initiative to combat the issue. "We've added someone to the regional drug task force and we added a canine officer and a canine handler in the city to combat it on the enforcement side, but it's just as important to hit on the education side and make sure people are aware what resources are available to them."

Along with getting trained on safe administration of Narcan by Project DAWN (Deaths Avoided With Naloxone) and receiving a kit with two doses of the medication, attendants went around to tables for different community resources that provide support for addicted persons.

Rachel Strahn, a Lima resident who works in Delphos, says the event taught her so much, from what the signs of an overdose are to how she can help should someone be in that situation. She believes there should be more events like this available to the community.

"I think there's still a lot of stigma about addiction and a lot of people don't understand that it is a mental illness," said Strahn, who is currently trying to get Project DAWN training brought to her co-workers. "I think if they come here it will really open their eyes and see how much of a struggle it is for people  and see that you don't need to be judgmental, you just need to jump in there and ask how you can help."

There are no immediate plans for another education event at this time, but the team plans on holding a similar event sometime in the spring.

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