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International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) is a global event held on August 31st each year and aims to raise awareness of overdose and reduce the stigma of a drug-related death. It also acknowledges the grief felt by families and friends remembering those who have met with death or permanent injury as a result of drug overdose.

Overdose Day spreads the message that the tragedy of overdose death is preventable. Wear Silver to show your support.


  • My son Dominique Gregory was 28 years old when he overdosed on what he thought was heroin and it turned out to be a drug that was 10,000 times stronger than morphine. He was the 4th person that died that day, July 10th, 2016. He struggled with the disease of addiction for many years. He started on pills and then I found out he was using heroin, which through me for a loop. As a recovering addict myself with over 14 years, I saw how the disease took control of my baby. He was doing everything that we addicts do to get high, but in those rare moments when his 3 year old daughter was around, he was the greatest father on earth. Running around with her, playing in the grass, just being a kid with his baby. It has been 17 days since he died and I still feel his presence and expect him to walk through the door.  I have comfort in the fact that he was at home when he died and that the guy who sold him that bad stuff is in jail and will be for a long time. Being clean and attending meetings keeps me safe. I miss my son DOMINIQUE EVAN GREGORY
  • My daughter, Lauren, died June 11th, 2016 from a accidental drug overdose. She was 21yrs old. She had struggled for 3 yrs with addictions to Xanax and Heroin. She had overcome it a number of times after multiple treatment programs, but always relapsed. She had been clean for the last 6 months, moved to Austin to begin a new independent life, was applying for jobs, making friends, enjoying the art and music scene. She was found dead in her car 3 weeks after she moved. She relapsed again for the last time. Her main issue was extreme, dehabilitating anxiety which she self-medicated for. She had been to multiple psychiatrists over the years but the medication treatment only worked temporarily. The anxiety was her demon which she could not overcome. She was a beautiful, creative, kind,free-spirited woman. She left behind 2 devastated parents and sisters, as well as many family members and friends. We fell so bad for her, she would be so mad if she knew this happened, her life was just starting. I am so sorry this happened to her and wish I could have made her anxiety go away. I wish I could trade places with her. She was very loved by so many people and left so much beautiful artwork, photography, and memories behind. She is free now and not hurting anymore. We just all miss her dearly. Luv ya lots, Mom
  • My niece  Amanda was only 22 years old when she overdosed.  She had struggled with drugs for a couple of years. She has tried to get Cottam a couple of times,  but it never stuck. My son was a herion  addict also. Rhett both had become consumed by the world of herion.  They both became homeless.  But they stuck together like always they were best friends from birth.  In July of 2015 Amanda did herion without my son.  She was with some unknown people and overdosed. She was found in the woods face down,  unconscious.  They did everything they could but after her parents found out shaggy was brain dead,  they let her go. This tragedy has left a Niue hole in many people's hearts.  She was a beautiful girl with a lot to give.  Her light burned out way to so because of this awful drug. Herr passing has taught us about life. It has taught my best friend and my son they don't want to do that anymore there is another way.  If we can from these life's that have been burned out way to soon than their not in vain. I love and miss you Amanda I will think of you always and remember your smile beauty and fun personality. Thank you for blessing me with your life.  With all my love
  • My sister's only son and my only nephew died from a methadone overdose on 8-10-2009. He was 30 years old. A doctor who has had his license since revoked who was responsible for many deaths prescribed my nephew 600 methadone tablets and 90 oxycontin for a one month period. Our Brandon was dead two days later from respiratory failure. He battled for 10 years with his addiction and battled with depression. We all miss him something terrible. He had a heart of gold and would do anything to help others. He loved to fish and loved monster trucks and four wheeling and mudding. His was a very talented landscape designer and had extensive knowledge in horticulture. His smile could light up a room. I miss hearing his laugh and seeing that twinkle in his eye. He was a very handsome young man and our family will never be the same   ~ Brandon Webster Bunkley ~  10-2-1978 ~ 8-10-2009
  • Not an hour goes by that I don't think of my son Jimmy.  I lost him to heroin on August 29th, 2015 he was 34. Although it's been almost a year, it's still hard to believe he's gone.  I watched him for almost 14 years battle his addiction.  He had so many people and family members that loved him and supported him but in the end it just wasn't enough.  I'm still not sure what the answer to this terrible addiction is.  Jimmy was a one of a kind kid.......tough as nails, but so good hearted and kind.  He left behind two children Kade and Ricky who he absolutely adored.  They are the reasons that I'm still here.  The pain at times is so's hard enough losing someone that you love, but even harder knowing that it could have been prevented with the right and available treatment.  I am not embarrassed or ashamed how my son passed for I now know it's a disease. I miss you every minute of every day Jim and please know that I love you more than anything else in the were my world.  Love mom.

Wearing silver can signify the loss of someone cherished and sends out a message that the tragedy of overdose death is preventable. Order your Silver Badge today.


Remembering those who have died – or been injured – because of overdose is an important part of International Overdose Awareness Day. If you would like to commemorate somebody, please add tributes here. Tributes will be posted on this website as soon as they are approved.

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Overdose Aware app

The Overdose Aware app aims to raise awareness amongst those who are experiencing drug use and their families, of how to recognise overdose signs and respond accordingly. The app shares information about what is an overdose, what are some of the key depressant, stimulant, opioid  and alcohol overdose symptoms.

Created with the kind support of the William Buckland Foundation, the Overdose Aware app is available for download on iPhone. Read more>>


Thousands of people die each year from drug related causes.They come from all walks of life.

Do you recognise the signs and symptoms of overdose? What is the impact of drug use and overdose on family, friends and those experiencing it?

These videos are where people affected by the impact of drugs use and overdose share some of their stories.

“There wasn’t any white light. I didn’t make out Jesus or see my dead family members. It was just oblivion and it was very frightening.”



International Overdose Awareness Day is an initiative of Penington Institute.
Overdose Day is volunteer driven and we are grateful to the many individuals and organisations all over the world who support and participate.

RE Trust
The William Buckland Foundation