VINTON, Ohio — The Field of Hope Community Campus is hosting a community carnival, Thursday, Sept. 9 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The event will take place across from Vinton Baptist Church.
According to its website, Field of Hope is a faith-based, nonprofit treatment and counseling center with certified employees and facilities to help those with substance use disorder and alcohol use disorder.
Field of Hope is working with other entities to host the event in an effort to bring the community together and raise prevention awareness, Cindy Hacker, prevention director said.
“Primary prevention has been known to be the best strategy to control substance abuse,” Hacker said. “We are hosting this event, along with the assistance from other community partners that include the Gallia, Jackson and Meigs ADAMHS Board [Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services], Gallia County Sheriff’s Department, Gallia County Local Schools and the Gallia County Health Department to help bring our community together.”
Hacker said the main goal of these events, and other prevention strategies, is to help educate people to help extinguish any current substance use and discourage the use and experimentation of substances before it starts.
“Solutions always start with education and engagement from the ground up,” Hacker said. “We cannot wait for our youth and other members of the community to come to us. We have got to go to them. We have a hurting community that needs to know that someone is there to support, educate and love them and that is exactly what we do at the Field of Hope”.
The event will have a variety of things for everyone including games and prizes, dunk the sheriff, pie in the face, inflatables, reptile adventures, sno cones and food.
This is not the first event Field of Hope has hosted with surrounding partners this summer.
“[We’re] joining together to build up our community by reaching the youth with a positive message of life and fun without drugs,” said Kevin Dennis, CEO of Field of Hope.
Dennis said 2020 recorded the most drug overdoses in history, with Ohio being the second highest state with overdoses in the country and Gallia County leading as the second highest county in overall overdoses in the state of Ohio.
“Those of us who love our county and its youth are ready to see that sad statistic turned around,” Dennis said. “Our goal is to give our young people a fighting chance with information, training, guidance, and loving concern to make sure they know we are pulling for them and want to see them succeed.”
Field of Hope has residential treatment for women and outpatient treatment options for both men and women already struggling with substance use disorder.
Dennis said Field of Hope is always welcoming volunteer mentors and helpers for the prevention program.
“Come be a part if the movement,” Dennis said.
The organization follows state COVID-19 guidelines and will be following any in place at the time of the event.
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Brittany Hively is a staff writer with Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (740) 446-4303.