Naloxone kits available at Turning Point in Red Deer. File photo

Naloxone kits available at Turning Point in Red Deer. File photo

Turning Point uses webinar series to spread health messages

Online series wraps up on Friday, which is International Harm Reduction Day

Red Deer’s Turning Point is finding new ways to spread its health messages in the midst of the pandemic.

Free online “Lunch ‘n Learn” events are part of a week-long harm reduction webinar series using Zoom that aims to highlight universal harm reduction approaches and the community-focused supports available and to draw attention to International Harm Reduction Day, which takes place on Friday.

The goal of harm reduction day is to promote evidence-based public health policy, practices and human rights.

On Tuesday, Rural Outreach and Harm Reduction will be the topic from 11:30 a.m. to noon. On Wednesday, Stigma and Current Drug Trends will be discussed and on Thursday those joining can get information on overdose prevention and naloxone training. On Friday, people will get information on what to do if they find discarded needles and how to dispose of them safely.

To register go to Turning Point’s Facebook page where a Zoom link is available.

In promoting its lunch events, Turning Point talks about how opioid deaths are no longer a rare occurrence in the community.

Last year, 56 people died from overdoses in Red Deer, more than double the 24 deaths in 2019, according to the Alberta Substance Use Surveillance System.

Across Central zone, the number of deaths increased 43 per cent to 128 last year, compared with 74 in 2019. Red Deer’s overdose prevention site reversed 1,190 overdoses last year.

So far, this year is shaping up to be another sad year for many families.

Mitchell Danser, communications and community engagement co-ordinator at Turning Point, said he has not yet seen all of the numbers but “I know we’re charting to be much worse than last year, and last year was the worst year.”

Central zone also continues to be among the hardest hit areas of the province.

Danser said the webinar series through Facebook is a new approach and it is hoped it will allow Turning Point spread its messages further.

“I think the appeal of having it on Facebook too is we are reaching a broader community. On a larger scale, being able to reach people throughout Alberta, that’s important for us.

“We’re doing what we can.”

Red Deer’s overdose prevention site received good news recently. The province extended funding for the operation of the site until March 31, 2022.

Meanwhile, Alberta’s Moms Stop the Harm has set up a virtual memorial as part of an online campaign to remember the hundreds of lives lost each year in the province because of the opioid crisis. A thousand entries can be found online at see-beyond.ca in which people talk about the kinds of people their loved ones were and how much their loss has meant.



News tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Ella Stoner, five, is ready to cut off her hair and donate it to A Child’s Voice Foundation. (Photo by Lauren Stoner Photography)
Central Alberta girl to donate her ‘princess hair’ to A Child’s Voice Foundation

A five-year-old girl from Rimbey has never had a haircut before. Now,… Continue reading

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Alberta adds 1,195 new COVID-19 cases Saturday

Red Deer has dropped to 760 active cases

Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr
Central Alberta MLAs comment on UCP members kicked out of caucus

A pair of central Alberta MLAs have commented on the two United… Continue reading

Contributed photo
Johanna Hannaford: Central Alberta designer offers inclusive clothing

By Stephanie Rhodes Local designer Johanna Hannaford’s inclusive clothing creations are smashing… Continue reading

Red life-ring with splash
Started from the bottom: How a family business started and grew in central Alberta

By Carina Moran We started our business in the basement of our… Continue reading

Vancouver Canucks' Zack MacEwen (71), Travis Boyd (72) and Jimmy Vesey (24) celebrate a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during third period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 15, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Big third period lifts Vancouver Canucks to 4-1 victory over Edmonton Oilers

Canucks 4 Oilers 1 EDMONTON — Matthew Highmore scored twice in the… Continue reading

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Canada’s vaccine rollout operation won’t miss a beat with new military leader: expert

DARTMOUTH — The sudden departure of the senior military officer in charge… Continue reading

Quebec Premier Francois Legault speaks during a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic, Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at the legislature in Quebec City. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot
Quebec premier argues province has power to amend constitution in letter to Trudeau

MONTREAL — Quebec Premier François Legault has written a letter to Prime… Continue reading

A demonstrator stands in front of riot police officers during a banned protest in support of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, in Paris, Saturday, May, 15, 2021. Marches in support of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip were being held Saturday in a dozen French cities, but the focus was on Paris where riot police countered organizers who said they would defy a ban on the protest, ordered on the grounds that it risked turning violent. (AP Photo/Rafael Yaghobzadeh)
Police fire tear gas on banned Palestinian march in Paris

PARIS (AP) — French riot police fired tear gas and used water… Continue reading

Photo by The Associated Press
NYC Pride parade bans police; Gay officers ‘disheartened’

NEW YORK (AP) — Organizers of New York City’s Pride events said… Continue reading

Welcoming cowboy boots at the historic and colourful Last Chance Saloon in the ghost town of Wayne near Drumheller, Alta., on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019. The bar and hotel are up for sale. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘It was a going concern’: Remaining bar and hotel in Alberta coal ghost town for sale

WAYNE, Alta. — Built during the First World War, it survived the… Continue reading

A letter from a bottle that washed up in New Brunswick in 2017 is shown in an undated handout photo. A team of researchers from Université du Québec à Rimouski are trying to solve the mystery of whether a letter in a bottle that washed up in New Brunswick in 2017 was indeed from a young victim of Titanic shipwreck or simply a hoax. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, N. Beaudry, UQAR *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Real or hoax? Quebec scholars probe mystery letter allegedly from Titanic passenger

MONTREAL — Researchers from Université du Québec à Rimouski are trying to… Continue reading

Minister of Transport Marc Garneau takes part in a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019. Advocates, experts and opposition MPs say correspondence showing close communication between the federal Transport Department and the Canadian Transportation Agency regarding passenger refunds throws into question the independence of the CTA, an arm’s-length body. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Emails reveal close communication between government, transport regulator on refunds

OTTAWA — Advocates, experts and opposition MPs say correspondence showing close communication… Continue reading

Most Read