The Chris Atwood Foundation

The Chris Atwood Foundation Our vision is to create communities where substance use disorder is recognized as a preventable and treatable disease so that people who suffer from it can experience the love, understanding, and support needed to live full lives in recovery.

The Chris Atwood Foundation began in 2013 after the Atwood family lost their son and brother, Chris, to an accidentally fatal heroin overdose. He passed away at age 21, following a 6 year battle with addiction. The CAF is a 501(c)3 charitable organization that strengthens the addiction recovery movement through education, stigma reduction, and recovery support services. We do this through: - Educating the public about the disease of addiction - Training the public how to administer naloxone to reverse an opioid overdose - Increasing public access to recovery and harm reduction resources - Supporting recovery communities on college campuses - Stigma-reducing educational presentations - Scholarships to local Recovery Houses - Advocating for public policy changes that promote recovery

Mission: The Chris Atwood Foundation mission is to save lives from opioid overdose, support recovery from substance use disorder, and defeat the stigma of this treatable brain disease.

Game changing family education is here, folks! www.family-rx.org is an online learning and coaching platform that offers...
06/24/2019

Game changing family education is here, folks! www.family-rx.org is an online learning and coaching platform that offers multidimensional healing for families facing addiction. It’s put into a convenient and accessible format because we live busy lives.

Take the ten day family detox for free or sign up for very affordable continuing education. Also, if you or a loved one need this, are dedicated to putting in the work, but can’t pay - message The Chris Atwood Foundation today and we will find a way to get you plugged in 👍🏻

Sharing our stories is one of the most powerful things we can do in this life.  Today we shared Christopher’s story at...
06/17/2019

Sharing our stories is one of the most powerful things we can do in this life. Today we shared Christopher’s story at Kenmore Middle School along with Sam Lucania and Tommy Walker who are both in long term recovery.

The message was clear - life isn’t always easy, asking for help is the best thing you will ever do for yourself, and things go way better when you’re sober.

We wish a safe summer break to all!

06/05/2019
Harm Reduction and Opioid Misuse: Embracing Positive Change

Harm Reduction is an often misunderstood term - do you know what it means? Take 3 minutes of your day to hear the “any positive change” philosophy explained by one of the nation’s most respected harm reductionists.

This video explores the role of harm reduction in helping people with substance use disorders stay healthy. To learn more about preventing opioid misuse, ove...

Drug induced homicide laws are becoming all too common - because people think they will deter drug dealing, sharing, and...
06/03/2019
She shared heroin with a friend who fatally overdosed. She’ll now spend 21 years in prison.

Drug induced homicide laws are becoming all too common - because people think they will deter drug dealing, sharing, and using. They don’t. Why? Because the clinical definition of addiction is “continued use despite negative consequences.” increasing the consequences doesn’t change the nature of addiction. This young woman needs medical treatment, not a life behind bars.

We are glad to have played a role in preventing one of these laws from passing in Virginia this year, but undoubtedly it will be back again until people start to prioritize proven public health approaches to this issue over unproven legal approaches.

“I should be dead as well," Emma Semler sobbed in court. "I don’t know why I’m still here and not Jenny.”

Happy Pride Month! Check out this great perspective on going to pride events while sober / in recovery.
06/01/2019
How to Party at Pride If You're Sober

Happy Pride Month! Check out this great perspective on going to pride events while sober / in recovery.

Mental preparation is just as important as a backpack full of seltzer.

Who else LOVES Brene Brown??
05/31/2019
What Being Sober Has Meant to Me | Brené Brown

Who else LOVES Brene Brown??

I celebrated 23 years sober this month – May 12 to be exact. About a year ago, I was talking to a dear friend who was newly sober, and our conversation shifted something in me. For the first time in my life, I realized that my sobriety isn’t a burden or limitation. Sobriety isn’t even a “hav...

Did you know there's a browser extension that automatically redirects you to Amazon Smile every time you shop on Amazon ...
05/29/2019

Did you know there's a browser extension that automatically redirects you to Amazon Smile every time you shop on Amazon so that a portion of all your purchases ALWAYS go to charity and you don't even have to remember? Genius!

Install it today and pick us as your charity! Check it out here for Chrome: http://www.smilealways.io/

And here for firefox: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/amazon-always-smile/

If you don't have Amazon Smile yet, it's easy:

1. Visit smile.amazon.com

2. Sign in with your Amazon.com credentials

3. Type "The Chris Atwood Foundation" in the search box and hit select.

4. **Remember, you have to start your shopping at smile.amazon.com for the donation to count.** So we recommend you add a bookmark or install the extension above to make it even easier to return to the site each time.

5. Start shopping!

Do you want to learn how to save a life? Come to our  upcoming R.O.P.E. (Reverse-Overdose Prevent & Educate) Program thi...
05/28/2019

Do you want to learn how to save a life? Come to our upcoming R.O.P.E. (Reverse-Overdose Prevent & Educate) Program this Wednesday to learn about how to use Narcan/Naloxone to recognize and reverse an opioid overdose!

The Chris Atwood Foundation would like to thank The Recovery Connection for hosting this R.O.P.E. (Reverse-Overdose Prev...
05/28/2019

The Chris Atwood Foundation would like to thank The Recovery Connection for hosting this R.O.P.E. (Reverse-Overdose Prevent & Educate) training at Edgehill Recovery Retreat Center!

Yesterday afternoon we facilitated our very first REVIVE! Opioid Overdose and Naloxone Training at Edgehill Recovery Retreat Ctr. We are grateful for our partnership with The Chris Atwood Foundation which enables us to provide this much needed training in Winchester, VA. Thank you to all who attended.

Naloxone Saves Lives!

Thank you for stepping up, Facebook. #StopOpioidSilence #sos #shareourstories Facebook and Center on Addiction with The ...
05/22/2019
Facebook introduces anti-stigma campaign to ‘Stop Opioid Silence’

Thank you for stepping up, Facebook. #StopOpioidSilence #sos #shareourstories Facebook and Center on Addiction with The Partnership have launched a story sharing campaign to prove that we are together, that recovery is possible, that hope leads to healing and that by sharing our stories we de-stigmatize a health condition that needs proper care and treatment.

The opioid problem in the US continues to be one of the country’s top health issues. As the nation's leading social platform, Facebook is launching ‘Stop Opioid Silence’ – an opioid anti-stigma campaign in partnership with the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids+ Center on Addiction.

Big news! Now the opioid reversal drug Naloxone is available for purchase online in Texas!   https://www.naloxoneexchang...
05/21/2019

Big news! Now the opioid reversal drug Naloxone is available for purchase online in Texas!
https://www.naloxoneexchange.com/
If you need Narcan/Naloxone in Virginia, feel free to contact us today.

Harm reduction keeps people alive, reduces the spread of disease, and people engaged in a harm reduction program are 5 t...
05/18/2019

Harm reduction keeps people alive, reduces the spread of disease, and people engaged in a harm reduction program are 5 times as likely to enter treatment. #harmreductionworks

For people who use drugs an effective program can include:
-Disease testing
-Resource referrals
-Overdose prevention training
-Narcan
-Sterile supplies
-Peer counseling
-Therapy
-Housing assistance
-A cup of coffee and a friendly face telling them they are a valuable human being!

Interesting development in addiction science!
05/17/2019
WVU to study brain implants for addiction

Interesting development in addiction science!

MORGANTOWN - The nation's first clinical trial to treat opioid addiction using brain implants designed to shock away the mechanisms that lead to physical addiction will be conducted in West

“Are there kinks to be worked out, a learning curve? Of course. But we can’t wait any longer to start doing somethin...
05/16/2019
How Technology Is Rapidly Advancing Overdose-Resistant Bathrooms

“Are there kinks to be worked out, a learning curve? Of course. But we can’t wait any longer to start doing something new.”

As the US harm reduction community grapples with the legal, cultural and political challenges to implementing the nation’s first legal ...

Great post from our friends at SAFE Project.  It’s easy to have the wrong idea about these things until you experience...
05/15/2019

Great post from our friends at SAFE Project. It’s easy to have the wrong idea about these things until you experience them, or someone close to you does. That’s why it’s important to have a #RealConvo with the people in your life. #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. In 2017, suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between t...
05/10/2019

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. In 2017, suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 34, claiming the lives of over 47,000 people. To combat this epidemic and to decrease stigma - have a #RealConvo about mental health this month. You can reach out about your own or check in with someone you know.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. You don’t need special training to have an open, authentic conversation about me...
05/07/2019

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. You don’t need special training to have an open, authentic conversation about mental health – and often, just talking about it can be the first important step in understanding where someone is with their mental health, and helping them get support or treatment if needed.

Here are some quick pointers you can use for having a #RealConvo with the people in your life.

05/06/2019

Come join us for a REVIVE/ R.O.P.E Program where you will learn to reverse overdose, prevent & educate. Narcan/ naloxone will be provided. The event will be held at the CSB Reston, this Friday, May 10th, from 10:30 to 11:30 am. The CSB Reston is located at 1850 Cameron Glen Drive, Suite 600a (1st floor), Reston, VA 20190. This event is open to the public.

Breaking news: VA Governor Ralph Northam has vetoed HB2528! Thank you to all who voiced their stories and concerns about...
05/02/2019
Governor Northam Vetoes Legislation with Potential Inadvertent Consequences for Individuals Struggling with Addiction

Breaking news: VA Governor Ralph Northam has vetoed HB2528! Thank you to all who voiced their stories and concerns about the unintended consequences of this bill which would allow friends who share drugs with each other to be charged with felony homicide in the event of an overdose. VA has taken a small step towards ensuring the opioid crisis is treated more like a public health crisis than a criminal one.

The Governor released the following statement:

"While addressing the opioid crisis and ensuring drug dealers are punished for supplying dangerous drugs is a top priority for the administration, this bill goes beyond drug dealers and would punish individuals who are themselves struggling with addiction."

Thank you, Governor Ralph Northam!

Virginia Governor, Governor73,

Big news for Virginia! We will do our part to keep driving these numbers down - by fighting for the health and lives of ...
05/02/2019
Report: Deadly drug overdoses down in Virginia for first time in 6 years

Big news for Virginia! We will do our part to keep driving these numbers down - by fighting for the health and lives of our neighbors with compassion and evidence based practices 👍🏾🙌🏼👏🏽

For the first time in six years, fatal drug overdoses in the state are on the decline, according to a new report from the Virginia Department of Health.

Thank you Novant Health UVA Health System!
04/30/2019

Thank you Novant Health UVA Health System!

In 2017, 6 million Americans misused controlled prescription drugs. The majority of these prescription drugs are obtaine...
04/24/2019
Take Back Day

In 2017, 6 million Americans misused controlled prescription drugs. The majority of these prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.

Saturday, April 27th is DEA National Take Back Day. Local police departments across the country will collect and dispose of any unused medications. The event is from 10 am to 2 pm. You can find a collection site near you by visiting the collection site locator at the link listed below.

https://takebackday.dea.gov/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI56_R8I_p4QIVxkSGCh09uw3DEAAYAyAAEgJMYvD_BwE

04/19/2019

The Chris Atwood Foundation is looking for volunteers! The CAF will be attending The Health & Wellness Expo at the Sterling Community Center on April 27th, from 10 am to 2 pm. Volunteers will need to get there at 9 am to help set up our table. Volunteers will be engaging with the public and helping to pass out promotional materials. If you are interested, please send us a message on Facebook or call Sonya @ 703-662-8689.

The main thing this bill would do is ensure no one calls 911, more people die, and addiction is further criminalized rat...
04/17/2019
'I'm not calling 911:' Should drug overdose deaths be treated as felony murder? - Virginia Mercury

The main thing this bill would do is ensure no one calls 911, more people die, and addiction is further criminalized rather than treated as a disease. It may be logical to say “if we make the punishment severe enough people will think twice” but addiction is not logical, it’s a brain disease, and it simply doesn’t work that way.

Northam has until midnight on May 3 to decide if he will sign it.

PLEASE call or email and tell him you do not support this misguided bill: https://www.governor.virginia.gov/constituent-services/communicating-with-the-governors-office/

The best way Jordan Siebert knows to describe it is simple: chaos. The 39-year-old Richmond woman has battled drug use on-and-off since she was an adolescent and she’s seen overdoses. She’s seen strangers carry an unconscious woman from a room. She’s been the subject of those emergency calls f...

This is just part of the reason we are working towards widespread saturation in the community of the overdose reversal m...
04/15/2019
New York State issues alert over fentanyl-laced marijuana

This is just part of the reason we are working towards widespread saturation in the community of the overdose reversal med, naloxone. Especially among college students and other high risk populations.

Police in upstate New York are warning of dangerous street drugs after marijuana laced with fentanyl was confiscated in a parking lot and three people were found unconscious in a car in a separate incident.

Two weeks ago, leaders at NOVA Community College cancelled a series of overdose reversal trainings we had scheduled on t...
04/12/2019
Why did NOVA Community College cancel potentially life-saving training sessions?

Two weeks ago, leaders at NOVA Community College cancelled a series of overdose reversal trainings we had scheduled on their campuses due to concerns over liability, administrative approval, and whether these trainings were warranted on campus. That very same week, one of our volunteers witnessed an overdose in his Psychology class on a NOVA campus.

While The Chris Atwood Foundation does not want to damage the relationship we have with NOVA, or any local institution, our priority is to protect and save the lives of our community members. That is why we took this story public.

NOVA is far from the only organization that has cited liability or other concerns as their reason for not acting to protect the people they serve. (Delaying action too long is not acting at all.) Overdose rates have been spiking dramatically for over 5 years which is ample time for institutions to have taken adequate action.

We hope that you will join us to insist that NOVA, and all organizations serving the community, welcome access to this free and life-saving resource immediately. To have your voice shared with those who are failing to act, please send your comments, stories, and concerns to [email protected], or send this news story along with your comments to your local institutions and legislators directly. Thank you.

A Virginia non-profit that is fighting the opioid epidemic says NOVA Community College cancelled a series of potentially life-saving training sessions. The goal of The Chris Atwood Foundation’s classes was to teach students how to use Naloxone, or Narcan, which can reverse the effects of an op...

Our Executive Director was interviewed for an exciting new podcast this week which we can’t wait to share! “The Sobe...
04/11/2019

Our Executive Director was interviewed for an exciting new podcast this week which we can’t wait to share! “The Sober Pod” covers all things recovery, through the mouths of people living in it. It’s the perfect blend of entertaining and deep - check them out on all the major podcast apps. (Look for the rocket logo.)

We are thrilled to announce that CVS in the Community has awarded us a $15,000 grant! This generous contribution will he...
04/06/2019

We are thrilled to announce that CVS in the Community has awarded us a $15,000 grant! This generous contribution will help us expand our ROPE (Reverse Overdose, Prevent, and Educate) Program into neighboring rural areas where access to naloxone and resources are limited.

We are very grateful and look forward to collaborating with CVS Health to save lives and support recovery in our communities!

“In no other field of medicine would we recommend coming off a medication that lowers mortality risk by 50-70 percent....
04/04/2019
A Medication-First Approach Can Blend Harm Reduction and Ongoing Treatment As Needed to Save Lives - IRETA | Institute for Research, Education & Training in Addictions

“In no other field of medicine would we recommend coming off a medication that lowers mortality risk by 50-70 percent.” Sadly that happens with addiction "medicine" every day and was the main contributing factor in Chris Atwood's death.

In 2009, the World Health Organization advocated for a “medication first” approach to the treatment of opioid use disorder. Ten years later, in the midst of an unprecedented number of …

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Reston, VA
20195

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