The opioid epidemic and addiction are issues that are undoubtedly present in our community, especially within Pennsylvania, where it has been called the worst public health crisis in our state. There are many steps PA is taking to fight back against this crisis, such as approving Opioid Use Disorder as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana in PA. While there are so many individuals who have been fortunate enough to receive the help needed to achieve and maintain sobriety, there are still many members of our community who need our help. That’s why this month, Keystone Shops is proud to support Prevention Point Philadelphia as a Keystone Kares.
Prevention Point Philadelphia (PPP) has a mission to promote health, empowerment, and safety for communities affected by drug use and poverty. They are working towards creating a world in which there is social and economic justice for disenfranchised individuals who suffer from issues with drug use as well those working in the sex industry so that will be accepted and cared for as ever present parts of our society and our community. Through their services, they aim for harm reduction to such individuals in settings that are non-judgmental, non-criminalized, and welcoming. PPP works on values such as respect, responsibility, advocacy, and justice.
PPP offers a number of helpful services for community members in need such as testing for HIV and HCV as well as links to care, the John Paul Drop-In Center as a safe shelter for those on the street and who need medical services, and one of the nation’s largest syringe service programs. These syringe service programs allow those in need safer injection options at a safe injection site which in turn also helps reduce the infection and spread of HIV. Other services offered are case management and a legal clinic, addiction education programs, mail services, meals, and overdose reversal training so more community members can learn how to use Narcan, a medication that can reverse opioid overdoses when administered within a certain window.
Though PPP has had to temporarily pause some of their services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they have still maintained many to help our community members. Additionally, they have joined with the Broad Street Ministry, Project Home, and SEAMAAC (our July 2020 Keystone Kares) in creating Step Up To The Plate, a program that helps to feed Philadelphians experiencing housing and food insecurity due to the pandemic.
PPP does an honorable service to take care of our disenfranchised community members, and we are proud to be supporting them. All month long our Keystone Shops locations will be accepting donations for PPP, and we strongly encourage our patients who are able to to donate. Throughout the month of August, we will be offering highlighted products with proceeds going directly towards PPP. If you would like to donate directly through their website, you can do so here. Additionally, you can purchase donatable items for PPP here. For more information on Prevention Point Philadelphia, please visit ppponline.org.