Despite the heavy rain, more than sixty people attended an informative and moving event on Thursday, March 23, regarding the dangers of substance abuse, especially that of fentanyl use. Organized by the Crescenta Valley Armenian Youth Center Outreach Committee, the event amplified efforts across the country to increase awareness and decrease demand for fentanyl, which is a highly addictive synthetic opioid that continues to drive a national overdose epidemic.
The audience had the opportunity to hear directly from the Glendale Police Chief and Glendale Police Department Captains, who provided valuable information and insight about the risks and dangers of fentanyl and substance use. According to the California Department of Education, fentanyl is the fastest-growing cause of death for young people in California and most young victims ingest fentanyl accidentally, thinking they are using something less dangerous.
In light of the need to educate communities, the Outreach Committee made it a priority to organize the event. A particularly moving presentation was given by Arick Gevorkian, a parent and advocate in the community, who shared his family’s experience of losing his young Eagle Scout son to accidental exposure. Armenian Youth Center of Crescenta Valley located in Montrose, Glendale, is dedicated to serving the community through its social and informational programs. The event recording is available online at https://youtu.be/jTWXXaTAwYE