AmeriCorps volunteer Jordan Gruppuso is reaching out to agencies and individuals in Montrose and Delta counties on matters of opioid addiction.
Gruppuso, who works out of the AmeriCorps office in Denver, is currently assigned to Montrose and Delta counties and has been provided office space at DCMH.
In Montrose she has been working with Montrose Health and Human Services.
She also works with Bill and Sheri Crittendon, event coordinators, for Archway Institute, a nation-wide institute for serving addictive disease and co-existing mental health disorders.
"Bill and Sheri are retired, and working through Archway Institute is their way of giving back, their way to bring hope to people on the Western Slope," Gruppuso said.
She offers Bill and Sheri's contact information for people suffering with addictive disease and co-existing mental health disorders. They can be reached by phone at 970-275-3369, or by email at billsheri.crittendon@the archwayinstitute.org.
Gruppuso will be working with Paige Osborne, manager at DCMH's West Elk Clinic in Hotchkiss to bring Americorps services to Delta County. She also seeks to work with other groups.
In noting the danger of becoming addicted to drugs, Gruppuso states that addiction often starts with prescription drugs. For some people, taking drugs prescribed after an injury can result in the brain becoming dependent on the drugs in as early as 15 days.
She distributes AmeriCorps' Community Opioid Response flyers regarding Naloxone in the training sessions she hosts and in those in which she participates.
The flyer explains that Naloxone is a non-addictive, life-saving medication that can reverse the effects of an opioid overdose when it is given in time. Naloxone works by knocking drugs off of the brain's opioid receptors. It sits on top of the receptors to prevent the drugs from reattaching themselves.
Once Naloxone is administered the person experiencing the overdose should regain consciousness and begin to breathe normally again. Naloxone is not a substitute for medical attention.
Gruppuso's goal is to take the information connected to addictive disease and co-existing mental health disorders to social media, community publications and other in an effort to reach as many people as possible regarding the problem of addiction and methods to combat it.
Gruppuso can be reached at 732-991-9357, or Jordan@coloradocorp.org.
Jacque Davis, marketing director for Delta County Memorial Hospital, said, "We are really excited to have Jordan here to help with bringing the opioid matter to the community's attention and bringing addiction down."