The Jennifer Act sends warm wishes for a “Happy New Year”!
As I take a look back to 2016, it was another productive year. I was honored to be invited by Governor Mike Pence, to be a special guest and attend the Governor’s State of the State Address ceremony Jan.12, 2016 at the Indiana Statehouse.
Raising Drug Awareness and Educating our youth has been at the top of the list for 2016.
I have enjoyed working with the staff and students at local schools in Indiana for Red Ribbon Week. The kids are learning about substances, tobacco, prescription drugs, illegal drugs, self esteem, bullying and peer pressure.
Educating Foster Parents about substance addiction and how it is a family disease was an important topic to cover.
Presenting at the Attorney General’s Drug Abuse Summit at the Indiana McKinney School of Law with State Representative Steve Davisson was one of the highlights of 2016.
Receiving the Heroes for Recovery Award -2016 by MHAI (Mental Health America of Indiana ) was another highlight of this year.
Lobbying for the CARA bill on Capitol Hill with 129 other families who lost their child to an overdose was another special moment of this past year (2016). I am appreciative to Addiction Policy Forum for organizing this in Washington,D.C.
Participating with Lt. Governor Holcomb at the ground breaking ceremony in Indianapolis at Community East Hospital’s new health wing (treating substance addiction and mental health) was another important milestone.
I have had another very busy and productive year with The Jennifer Act mission work. I am not an organization or a non-for-profit. I am a mom on a mission. This is all done in memory of my precious daughter, Jennifer Reynolds, who sadly died prematurely of an accidental prescription drug overdose, Jan.15, 2009.
I am seeing progress but there is still much work to do to address the issues of substance addiction, mental health disorders and facilitating more treatment services. Prevention and Education are a must! Our next generation is being heavily influenced with peer pressure to try drugs, tobacco, alcohol and prescription pills. We all know the opioid epidemic is fueled, often times by a prescription pill addiction. We have more children entering into the Foster Care System and more babies born addicted. This problem is not going away any time soon, so we must be vigilant in addressing these issues.
Being a champion for change is not easy but it is worth all of the effort it takes to save lives.
Thank you to everyone who has shared your support, joys and sorrows and helped to sponsor The Jennifer Act mission. May this new year bring you peace, love and happiness.
Happy New Year!
Founder of The Jennifer Act