Officials hope a free event August 28th will help those looking for answers when it comes to better understanding the opioid epidemic.

The 3rd annual Overdose Awareness Day in Grande Prairie will focus on what kind of impacts it’s having on residents, where to find support if you or anyone you know is involved in opioid use, and what the city is doing to help.

Lead Organizer Tyla Savard hopes the day will allow people to feel they can open up about anything they are facing without judgement.

“They can reach out, can show support. Still, a long ways to go, but at least now it’s not so much one person in a crowd of a million saying something. It’s now 10, in comparison to what it was.”

Savard, whose daughter had a lengthy battle with addiction but is now three years clean, says no one should ever feel scared to talk to their children or other family members about drugs. She adds, from experience, that just getting to meet with people going through potentially similar situations can make all the difference in someone’s emotional health.

“Having that environment of understanding takes such an edge off some of that stress and just helps make you feel like you can just stop and catch your breath.”

The event will start with an awareness march at 4:30 p.m. leaving from Northreach Society on 102 Street. People will then march through the downtown core to Muskoseepi Park where they will have the opportunity to share their stories, enjoy a BBQ and listen to a number of speakers.