I would like to thank all the many, many people whom have reached out in the last two and a half weeks. The outpouring of encouragement, grief, sadness, fear and recovery was beyond anything I could’ve ever imagined. It has been life altering for me. At first I was just a Dad who was scared to death that I was going to lose my daughter and wanted to get together with the parents of her friends so we could work as a group to keep our kids safe. What has happened is so much more.
There are so many of us; families in the community struggling with this same crisis. We need to keep communicating among us and as a community. We need the shame and stigma to end starting now. We need to continue to speak with one voice but many names and faces.
Already the parents of wetheparents.ca have started to make a difference.
- Schools have now started to educate parents and their students
- I met with Alex Munter, President and CEO of CHEO. They have agreed to and have already started working on a resource package with our input for children struggling with addiction who arrive at CHEO and their parents. It will give parents pertinent information on how to deal with detox/withdrawal and a list of resources in our community which can assist the children and their families with withdrawal management and treatment
- Naloxone kits have been distributed to hundreds of families. As well many Fireman came up to me at the City’s meeting on February 27th and showed me their Naloxone kits that they had gotten themselves so they would be ready if required.
- Tomorrow I meet with our Mayor Jim Watson.
- I will be meeting with Ms. Jane Philpott the Federal Minister of Health in the near future.
While these wins are awesome, they are what politicians refer to as “low hanging fruit”. We need to continue on as a group to push our agenda forward. There are many more resources our families need and we need to proceed as a united group.
Tomorrow, Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., wetheparents.ca and I will be holding a follow-up meeting at the Kanata Recreational Complex. The purpose of this meeting will be to discuss what we have accomplished so far and a discussion regarding our plans going forward.
All parents/grandparents of children are invited. This meeting will be by parents and for parents. The only agencies that are invited and may be in attendance to answer questions are PLEO and Ottawa Public Health.
“It takes a Village”
We have just begun!