Lived Experience Network ScriptWise (LENS) Young Ambassadors IOAD 2023
Time: 02:00 pm
Location: Mowbray Park
Name of Organisation: Lived Experience Network Scriptwise (LENS).
Contact: Jasmin Raggam
International Overdose Awareness Day (IOAD) is the world’s largest annual campaign to end overdose, remember without stigma those who have died from overdose, and acknowledge the grief of the family and friends left behind.
The IOAD 2023 theme “Recognizing those people who go unseen” is about acknowledging people in our communities who are affected by overdose but might go unseen in the crisis.
The people we recognize at this years IOAD 2023 Event, are the children, who have lost a parent, grandparent, sibling, aunty, uncle, cousin or family friend to a prescription medication overdose.
This year, we are proud introduce our amazing and courageous “Young Ambassadors” who have all suffered the grief of losing a loved one to a prescription medication overdose or related fatality, some have lost more than one family member.
While we struggled with how to structure the event, mindful of protecting the privacy of children while supporting them, trying to help break the stigma they feel but don’t understand, raise awareness without upsetting them. We decided to ask the Young Ambassadors.
Our young ambassadors rose to the occasion, they believe no child should be left behind, or treated differently because how their Mum, Dad, Aunty or Uncle died. They ask if this could be their event, we gave them a week, a list with some rules and they returned with a list of what they said would be cool.
After reading their list, we thought, what have we done, but what did we expect, even we forgot they are all so young. We’ve gone above and beyond to tick each box, including a giant purple teddy and his hundred friends, fairy lights, cupcakes and painted rocks!! So we decided that a teddy bears picnic would be fun for the kids.
THE TEDDY BEARS PICNIC
2pm Picnic lunch with the Teddys
Every teddy bear will represent a child attending, they will be placed beside the purple heart message of the person they lost, every child will choose their own teddy, and a record of the Childs first name and the teddys name kept. After the event, all of the teddys will be placed around Brisbane looking for their new forever home, each teddy will have a message and a link to the fb page that has been created asking for a pic and a message of hope to be uploaded for the child. We will also encourage messages of hope from people and a pic of something purple to let these kids know you care. All of the giant teddy bears will be donated to children’s wards, charities etc.
3pm – Rock Hunt
Every rock found will be photographed and uploaded to the Qld Rock Painters FB page and a link to the FB page created for the teddys, parents will be notified when their child’s rocks or teddy are posted. Of course every rock found gets a prize.
4pm Chalk the Walk.
We will be chalking the boardwalk with our IOAD 2023 hashtags, hearts, flowers and messages of hope.
4.30pm – Arts and Crafts
Hearts and Butterflies to hang from our tribute tree and some to take home.
5pm – Sausage sizzle
Cut the cake, gift bags given out for each child to take home.
6pm – Solar Lights and Tributes.
As the sun goes down, our solar lights will light up, some of our Young Ambassadors will light the tribute candles and the tribute songs will be played, we take this time to honor the lives lost and acknowledge the grief families have suffered.
#WeSeeYou #IOAD2023 #PrescriptionMeds #JonsStory #LENS