Chesco 5k aims to fund opioid battle

Spotlighting an ongoing effort to fight opioid and heroin addiction, the Chester County Commissioners and District Attorney’s Office have scheduled a Color 5k Run & Walk at Everhart Park in West Chester, on Saturday, Nov. 5.

announce a Color 5k Run & Walk to fight

Chester County Commissioners Terence Farrell (from left), Kathi Cozzone, and Michelle Kichline join District Attorney Tom Hogan announce a Color 5k Run & Walk to fight opioid addiction.

“Chester County is one of the wealthiest, best educated and healthiest counties in the nation. However, we face the same overdose epidemic that is creating significant issues – and causing deaths – across Pennsylvania and America,” Chester County Commissioners’ Chairman Terence Farrell said in a county press release.

County officials and departments are already working together through the Overdose Prevention Task Force, led by the commissioners and district attorney, the Chester County Health Department and Department of Drug and Alcohol Services.

“Americans are the number one consumers of opioids and they are being abused by young and old, rich and poor, urban and rural,” Commissioner Kathi Cozzone said in the release. “Prescription drug abuse has opened the door to heroin use, especially among young people, because heroin is cheaper and easier to obtain.”

Commissioner Michelle Kichline added that the run and walk serves two purposes: “to raise awareness that this addiction crisis is found throughout Chester County, and also to raise funds for Chester County hospitals to study and coordinate a ‘warm hand-off’ program that transitions those who have been saved from an overdose into long-term treatment and counseling.”

Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan noted that the county’s task force is serving as a statewide model. “Our approach includes the arrest and prosecution of drug dealers, diverting addicts into treatment and counseling through Drug Court, educating kids and their parents through our Narcotics Overdose Prevention and Education (NOPE) program, taking drugs off the streets through our drop box initiative, and working with doctors and health care providers on opioid prescribing practices,” Hogan said in the release. “We work every day to come up with new ways to protect our kids.”

Sponsorship opportunities at many levels are available for companies and individuals to offset the cost of the run and walk and raise additional funds. For more information on sponsorship, contact Rebecca Brain, Chester County communications coordinator, at 610-344-6279 or email rbrain@chesco.org.

Registration will begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 5, and the race will start at 9 a.m. For details on the event, and to register to run or walk, go to http://chesco.org/color5k.

 

 

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