Hosting the program will be a second-year medical student at UBCO, Ariel Smith, who offers free naloxone training sessions.
The workshop is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Nov. 25 at UBCO, room RHS260, in the Reichwald Health Sciences Centre.
Smith said she’s seen first-hand the impacts of the opioid crisis in the Okanagan, having volunteered as part of a naloxone training team with an outreach program.
“There is still a large stigma associated with opioids and naloxone training,” said Smith. “In our workshops, we create a safe learning environment for people to ask questions, learn to recognize the signs of an overdose and practice with real equipment.”
The outreach program, Helping Out People Exploited, supports homeless and exploited women in Kelowna and Vernon, and is 100 per cent donation funded.
Smith said for a year and a half, she visited homeless shelters and trained people on how to use naloxone kits to help prevent opioid overdoses.
“Through conversations with family and friends, I recognized a huge knowledge gap still existed in our community,” said Smith, adding naloxone training can save a life.
“Especially considering the majority of opioid overdose deaths in B.C. happen to people living inside a private residence.”
According to a B.C. Centre for Disease Control report earlier this month, 50,000 overdoses in the province have been reversed since 2012 because of naloxone kits.
Those who partake in Monday’s program will receive training, a certificate of completion and a free naloxone kit. To register, email: email@example.com. For more information, visit oknaloxone.ca.