Fentanyl Awareness Day

Fentanyl Awareness Day

WINCHESTER, VA — To mark the third annual National Fentanyl Awareness Day on May 7, 2024, Northwestern Community Services Board (NWCSB) and the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition (NSVSAC) are working to help inform communities about the fentanyl crisis in the United States. NWCSB and the NSVSAC are joining a coalition of issue area experts to come together to raise public awareness of the urgent problem: people are dying at alarming rates due to illicitly manufactured fentanyl. Led by the national nonprofit Song for Charlie.

National Fentanyl Awareness Day began in 2022 by Song For Charlie to use education as the first step in preventing tragic outcomes. Song for Charlie was founded by parents who have lost loved ones to this crisis. National Fentanyl Awareness Day provides resources on how to get involved and the facts behind fentanyl, from educating friends and family to knowing the signs of an overdose, to sharing on social media. Members of the coalition include Google, the Ad Council, the Drug Enforcement Administration, Major League Soccer, YouTube, and more.

On May 7, the Northwestern Community Services Board and the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition will host a Fentanyl Awareness Day Event at the Our Health Campus, 329 N. Cameron St. Suite 200, Winchester, VA from 12:00 pm until 3:00 pm. At this event, you will learn about the Fentanyl Crisis in our area, hear from a panel of Community Experts, and receive our free REVIVE Naloxone training, where you will learn more about addiction and how to respond to an opioid overdose.

Shannon Urum, Prevention and Wellness Services Coordinator at NWCSB says "Partnerships with organizations like the Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition is vital for the health of our community. The Fentanyl crisis continues to significantly impact our families and we need to come together as a community to find meaningful solutions."

In a study conducted by Song For Charlie, two-thirds (67%) of young Americans reported awareness of drug-related deaths involving fentanyl, but only about half (48%) say they are aware of fentanyl being used to create counterfeit pills. Fake pills have been found in all 50 states and are the main reason fentanyl-involved deaths are the highest and fastest growing among youth.

“Like far too many families, we suffered an unspeakable loss because our son didn’t know the pill he was buying was fake and could be deadly,” said Ed Ternan, co-founder of Song for Charlie. “Today, more young Americans understand that danger than they did last year - but millions remain at risk because they don’t understand just how grave the consequences can be of taking a pill purchased from an illegitimate source.”

Find more information about NFAD, fentanyl risks, and safety tips at https://www.fentanylawarenessday.org/


Northwestern Community Services is celebrating 50 years of serving the City of Winchester, and the Counties of Clarke, Frederick, Page, Shenandoah, and Warren. It is the mission of Northwestern Community Services Board is to help people through life’s challenges with quality behavioral health services guided by principles of respect, recovery, and self-determination.  

About Song for Charlie Song for Charlie is a national family-run nonprofit charity dedicated to raising awareness about ‘fentapills’ — fake pills made of fentanyl. After the sudden loss of their son Charlie, Ed and Mary Ternan created Song for Charlie with one goal: to bring awareness to counterfeit prescription pills being sold online targeting young people. Song for Charlie partners with experts, educators, parents, and other influencers to reach the most vulnerable group: young people between the ages of 13-24. Its programs highlight the emerging dangers of self-medication and casual drug use in the fentanyl era and encourage healthier strategies for coping with stress. For more information, please visit songforcharlie.org.