Battle Against Drug Addiction Continues Wednesday Night
Substance Abuse Awareness Night is scheduled for Wednesday night at Wilmington Middle School beginning at 7 p.m.
Wilmington Police and local officials acknowledge that Wilmington, like many other towns across the country, has a legitimate issue with drug addiction. On Wednesday, they hope to take one of the initial steps towards solving that problem.
The Wilmington Substance Abuse Coalition is teaming up with the Wilmington Police Department and Wilmington Public Schools to host Substance Abuse Awareness Night at Wilmington Middle School on Wednesday night.
The event, which features a pair of what are expected to be powerful speakers, begins at 7 p.m. in the auditorium.
“I hope it’s going to be a large turnout,” said Health Director Shelly Newhouse. “The more that I talk to people, the more I hear they’re happy we’re doing something like this. If I can reach out and help just one family, it’d be worth it.”
One of the speakers will tell residents about her experience losing a child to a heroin overdose, something that has become an increased problem in Wilmington over recent years.
A second presenter will share her own story along with her daughter, who overcame addiction and is now sober and thriving.
Newhouse said it has been refreshing to see how open the town has been in organizing the coalition.
“It’s wonderful that as a community, the leaders can come together and try to do something for the town,” said Newhouse. “This is something the Wilmington Police Department and Wilmington Public Schools have been working on with us, and I couldn’t have done it without them. It’s been a big collaborative effort.”
The topics of drug use and drug abuse are difficult ones for families to discuss. But Newhouse said the most important thing parents need to know is that it’s critical to find a way to speak with children about the subject, regardless of how uncomfortable it may be.
“This is something that should be talked about every single day in the home with your kids,” said Newhouse. “You talk about how the day was, how sports are going, and this. All of these kids who we see now who are addicted to drugs at some point before that probably told their parents they didn’t do drugs. The more that you talk about it with your family and kids, the better off you will be.”
During Monday’s Board of Selectmen meeting, members talked about the importance of Wednesday’s event. Several selectmen are expected to be in attendance.
“This is such an important community event,” said Judy O’Connell. “I hope as many people who can attend as possible will do so.”