Safe Communities: 4th annual International Overdose Awareness Day

Safe Communities partners will join communities around the world to remember those who have died or suffered permanent injury due to drug overdose.

Observed on the 31st of August every year, International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) seeks to create better understanding of overdose, reduce the stigma of drug-related deaths, and create change that reduces the harms associated with drug use.

Safe Communities International Overdose Awareness Day Observances:

Flags posted August 23th – September 7th

Olbrich Park Flag Memorial Display to honor those lost to Overdose.  Memorial Flags available at Safe Communities Offices.  Please call 608-441-3060 for pick up information or email at [email protected]

Tuesday, August 31st
4th Annual International Overdose Awareness Day Remembrance Event
6:00 PM  Olbrich Park “Your light still shines” memorial gathering and observance to honor loved ones lost to overdose

Invited speakers:
The Honorable Judge Everett Mitchell
Montee Ball
Charles Tubbs, Sr, Dane County Emergency Management
Impacted Family Members

Ian’s Pizza and Kona Ice provided by Madison Community Policing Foundation

Narcan and fentanyl testing strips available free of cost provided by ARC Community Services.

WI Faces of Addiction Quilt on display, thanks to Bev Kelly-Miller.

Candle-lit memorial walk through flag display to be held after the program.

Hosted by members of Stop the Overdose Epidemic Steering Committee, African American Opioid Coalition of Safe Communities, ARC Community Services, and community partners.

See for details.

In 2020, 602 registered IOAD events were held in 37 countries.

People and communities came together to raise awareness of one of the world’s most urgent public health crises – one that, unfortunately, is only getting worse.

According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime’s most recent World Annual Drug Report, 585,000 people around the world died as a result of drug use in 2017.

A full list of the IOAD 2021 events currently planned around the world can be found at:

International Overdose Awareness Day is convened by Penington Institute, an Australian not-for-profit.  Financial support for Safe Communities’ local observances has been provided by families of those lost to overdose and Safe Communities Sustaining Members.