OWEGO, NY – (WIVT/WBGH) Amidst the overdose epidemic faced by our community, a local substance abuse ally is paying tribute to those affected by addiction.

Tioga County Advocacy Support and Prevention Coalition is hosting their Annual Overdose Awareness Vigil on August 31 at 6 p.m., in Draper Park. Those in attendance will hear from speakers sharing their personal stories as well as local agencies who will be providing overdose prevention and harm reduction recourses. The vigil will be displaying purple flags to memorialize those who have been lost due to overdose. Participants will also have the ability to come together to light a candle for those impacted by addiction.

For more information on how to get involved in the event, contact ngarritano@casa-trinity.org. You can find the coalition on Facebook at Tioga County ASAP or on their website tiogaasap.org.

Tioga County Advocacy Support and Prevention Coalition, or Tioga County ASAP, was reestablished in 2016 when local community leaders wanted to find a solution to the growing opioid and overdose epidemic. Lead by Chairwoman Marte Sauerbrey, a committee was created with guidance from local addiction prevention service agency, CASA-Trinity. The coalition was awarded the Drug Free Communities Grant in 2018, allowing the group to further share their values with the community in order to prioritize mental health and substance use prevention in the area.