County Offers Free Workshops To Help Fight Addictions

GLOUCESTER TOWNSHIP, N.J. — The Camden County Addiction Awareness Task Force will begin hosting a number of workshops in its continuing efforts to arm residents in the fight against opioids and other drugs and addictions in 2020. 

Beginning this month, the Task Force will offer free Narcan training sessions where participants will learn how to administer naloxone to reverse a heroin or opioid overdose and will receive a free naloxone kit upon completing the training successfully.

All trainings are held at the Living Proof Recovery Center located at the Center for Family Services at 108 Somerdale Road in Voorhees.

“We all know someone who is, or has been, at risk of an overdose at some time or another. This training equips you with the tools and skills you need to save that person’s life in the event of an overdose,” Freeholder Director Louis Cappelli, Jr. said.  “We can all help to reduce the number of overdose deaths in our community.”

Trainings require advance registration to participate and are held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on the following dates: February 4, 2020, March 3, 2020, April 7, 2020, May 5, 2020, June 2, 2020, July 7, 2020, August 4, 2020, September 1, 2020, October 6, 2020, November 3, 2020, and December 1, 2020.  To register, call Urban Treatment Associates, INC. at (856) 225-0505.

Beginning in February, the Task Force will also host a series of workshops on understanding addiction entitled “Strength and Hope: Shared Experiences of Addiction and Recovery.” The workshops, each led by a different community leader, will focus on the current best practices in prevention, education, treatment and advocacy.

“These workshops have been instrumental in helping families affected by addiction and overdose cope with their pain, as well as helping others to identify the warning signs before it’s too late,” Cappelli said. “We are continuing to seek alternative ways to get this information in the hands of the people who need it most as the epidemic of substance use disorder continues to grip our communities.”

Spring workshops, each beginning at 6:00 P.M. at the Camden County College campus in Gloucester Township, will kick off on February 20, with a session focused on the dangers of vaping led by Cathy Butler, Assistant Director of Public Health Programs for Family Health Initiatives and the Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative.

The three workshops that are currently scheduled for the spring semester are as follows:

February 20, 2020

Dangers of Vaping?

Presented by Cathy Butler-Witt, MA, BSW, NCTTP, CTTS—Assistant Director, Public Health Programs for Family Health Initiatives and the Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative. Cathy holds a Master’s degree in Human Services, a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work, a National Certificate in Tobacco Treatment Practice.

March 19, 2020

Gaming/Gambling, Youths and Gaming Addiction

Presented by Daniel Trolaro, Assistant Executive Director Council of Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey.

April 23, 2020

Harm Reduction

Presented by Martha Chavis, Executive Director Camden AHEC. Martha Chavis has over 40 years of work experience with nonprofit organizations providing health education, employment and social services. As Camden AHEC’s Executive Director, Ms. Chavis has as her agency’s mission, ‘healthy futures for all people.’ Ms. Chavis is a passionate proponent for ‘a healthy quality of life’ which she believes everyone is deserving. Ms. Chavis has been on the frontline of HIV prevention services since 1984.

Each of these workshops is being offered for free to those who RSVP in advance of the session. Camden County College will offer CEUs to those who are pre-registered and are seeking credit towards current addiction counselor credit certifications and licensing. To register, participants can contact Patty DiRenzo, at (856) 374-6137 or by email Registration is also available online at

This series is supported by the Camden County Addiction Awareness Task Force, Camden County College, the Camden County Department of Health & Human Services, and the Office of Mental Health & Addiction.