Candlelight Vigil To Be Held For Overdose Victims

GLOUCESTER TOWNSHIP, N.J. — A Candlelight Vigil in Remembrance of Overdose Victims will be held at Timber Creek Park in Gloucester Township on Tuesday, August 27, beginning at 7:00 P.M.

The vigil, hosted by the Board of Freeholders, will include a slideshow of photos submitted by families in the Camden County community that will be shown during the vigil to highlight the toll of overdose deaths in America while also giving families an opportunity to celebrate the lives of those they’ve lost.

“We lose nearly 200 Americans every day due to a drug overdose, making this the number one cause of death among Americans under the age of 50,” Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli, Jr., said in a statement. “We’re inviting families to participate and submit a photo of their loved ones so that we may honor their lives and raise awareness about this public health epidemic.”

Families can visit to submit their loved one’s name and photo.

The vigil corresponds with International Overdose Awareness Day, a worldwide event that began in Melbourne, Australia in 2001 and is held on August 31 each year. The event’s goal is to raise awareness of opioid overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related deaths as well as acknowledge the grief felt by families and friends and remember those who have died or had permanent injury as a result of drug overdose.  

The Camden County Addiction Awareness Task Force, created by the Freeholder Board in 2014, maintains the website to help educate residents on the resources available to prevent and treat addiction. 

If you or a loved one needs help, please call the county’s 24/7 toll-free confidential hotline for addiction help at 877-266-8222 or call 911 in the event of an emergency.

The Camden County Office of Mental Health and Addiction is located in the Michael J. DiPiero Center for Human Services, 512 Lakeland Road in Gloucester Township.  They can be reached by phone at (856) 374-6361.