Fight Against Opioids

There’s a lot of excitement around the church building with the upcoming Community Picnic. We’re excited because it’s an opportunity to partner with other community organizations to help change lives and make a positive difference in Waukesha.

This year’s theme is “Fight Against Opioids.” The problem of Heroin/Opioid Addiction is on the rise. Waukesha Police Chief Russell Jack told me that in 2010 there were 25 reported opioid overdoses and that 8 of them were fatal. In 2017, there were 69 reported opioid overdoses and 18 of them were fatal. The police are doing their part but, according to Chief Jack. “law enforcement is one small piece of the puzzle.”

Fire Chief, Steven Howard, encourages us to get educated about opioids so that we can identify the clues that a family member might be using and direct them toward help. When pain meds are cheaper on the street than with a prescription, all sorts of people are turning to illegal, and unregulated, opioids. Further, Chief Howard told me about how anti-narcotic meds like Narcan, when administered, can save lives. But, they are no magic cure. People who suffer from addiction need therapy. That’s where allies can help.

Our principle partner for this Community Picnic, and beneficiary of the funds we raise, is SALS Recovery. Often when a person is in addiction recovery, they cannot return home as there are still too many triggers for their addictive behavior present. SALS provides needed therapy and sober alternative living spaces for those in recovery. They have recently partnered with Waukesha Memorial Hospital to form a new program where a SALS Therapist can be alerted of potential addicts in the Emergency Room. Right in the ER, therapist and client can meet and, if the client is willing, begin a path toward recovery.

This Community Picnic is an opportunity to raise awareness of the Opioid Epidemic in Waukesha and to raise funds to combat it. Chief Jack, Chief Howard along with Mayor Shawn Reilly, will be here to speak to the importance of this issue. I understand that they will be taking a turn with me and others in the Dunk Tank. How’s your arm? Can you make us splash? Come on out and give it a try.

There will be live music, free food and games for children of all ages. There will also be raffle baskets and an advance sale raffle. You can win a 50″ Sharp FHD Roku TV, an Apple 9.75″ A10 Infusion iPad, or $100.00 Cash! If you’d like to purchase a raffle ticket, contact Ron Knutson, or me. If you’d like to donate, you can send a check to the church, with Community Picnic on the comment line, and it will be forwarded to them. You can also click here goo.gl/zjrtC1 and make a gift with your credit card directly to SALS Recovery.

This Community Picnic is an occasion to bring healing and hope to people in need. I think that’s what Jesus would want us to do. In fact, I believe it’s what Jesus is doing and inviting us to join in the mission. Pray for us. Pray for SALS Recovery and all the people they serve. Pray for our other partners in this network of caring. Participate in the event and contribute as you are able. Perhaps some lives can be saved, some paths of addiction and destruction thwarted, all because we each did our part. May it be so.