Drug Safe Hudson was developed to enhance drug and alcohol awareness, reduce stigma and improve opportunities for assistance to Hudson residents who have been affected by drug and alcohol use.

Now in its second year and funded by the Hudson Community Foundation and Hudson Community First, Drug Safe Hudson’s work is led by Jamie Messenger, who serves as the community resource specialist dedicated to the needs of those living, working and going to school in Hudson. Messenger, a licensed chemical dependency counselor, works in close collaboration with Cover2 Resources, a non-profit organization devoted to helping those touched by the opioid epidemic.

"I am pleased with my ability to reduce the stigma in Hudson using a few different avenues," Messenger said. "I am part of the Safe RX Regional Collaborative which provides Deterra bags, a safe medication disposal pouch that encourages people to clean out their medicine cabinets. This has helped us remove more than 1,100 potentially dangerous pills from Hudson homes safely.

"It also creates a culture around safe practice. People are commonly prescribed large numbers of narcotic pills but tend to take less than half. These pills tend to stay in medicine cabinets where young people can gain access to them leading to abuse."

Messenger also is working with Drug Free Clubs of America, school principals and the Hudson athletic director to build solid relationships and to provide resource information to students and school personnel. Student athletes often are particularly at risk when they are prescribed opioid painkillers after an injury.

"Drug Safe Hudson has provided valuable information to schools and assisted the Hudson Police Department with Drug Take Back days where over 80 pounds of pills were collected across the community during just one Drug Take Back Day," Messenger said.

For more information on local drug and alcohol abuse assistance, go to www.drugsafehudson.org.

Follow Drug Safe Hudson on Facebook and Twitter for social media updates.

Community involvement is key to Drug Safe Hudson reaching Hudson residents in need of help. Messenger is available to speak to groups, staff meetings, Hudson community organizations and attend events to provide free resource information. Messenger can be reached at 330-822-HELP or Jamie@drugsafehudson.org.

Contributions to the Hudson Community Foundation’s Hudson Prevention & Addiction Resource Fund can be made online at www.myhcf.org or by calling the foundation at 330-655-3580.

Founded in 2000, Hudson Community Foundation’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in Hudson by increasing charitable giving, educating and connecting donors to community needs and leading on community issues. Supported by hundreds of local donors and Donor Advised Funds, HCF ended 2017 with total assets of $19.4 million. The foundation operates from an office in the historic Baldwin House on Hudson’s village green and is governed by a volunteer board of directors.