In 2016, British Columbia declared a public health emergency, due to the alarming increase in overdose deaths in the province. While targeted responses have been implemented at provincial, regional, and local levels and many lives have been saved, it’s clear we must continue to innovate and work collectively.
Rural and remote communities have unique strengths and needs. In 2019, ANKORS conducted an assessment of overdose prevention and harm reduction services in the Interior Health region, focusing specifically on small and rural communities. We collected information about services, community responses, and service users, looking at both strengths and gaps, with the intention of providing information that will help governments and communities improve our responses. In total, we connected with 74 service providers and 237 service users from 16 communities across the region.
We’ve created a webpage where you can find the two reports (one on findings related to service providers and a second that shares what we learned from service users), as well as an infographic representation of some of the most salient findings, and a downloadable set of cards that you can use to guide dialogues in your community. These cards are great tools for working through some of the highlights from the project and are intended to help organizations and groups to identify ways you can build on community strengths.
We’ve also included executive summaries of both reports, so that you can quickly read highlights. All the materials are available on the ANKORS website, so please share this email or link with others who you think may find these useful: http://ankors.bc.ca/needsassessment/
If you have any questions please contact [email protected].