Recovery is about progression not perfection.
The Jillian Foundation is dedicated to helping people afflicted with mental health and substance use disorder by accelerating the adoption of “Harm Reduction” policies and practices within treatment centers servicing the Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod communities.
The Jillian Foundation was founded in 2019 to raise community awareness and spark a local movement to end the opioid epidemic in Massachusetts. The foundation is a 501(c)3 organization started by Alan Slatas—father of Jillian Slatas—who passed away on November 12, 2017 from an accidental drug overdose of heroin laced with fentanyl. Jillian was an empathetic person who was on her way to becoming a nurse. So our vision is to continue her legacy by helping others get the help they need, when they need it.
We want to catalyze local communities around a national movement to reduce risks associated with mental health and substance use disorders. We want to increase access to successful treatment programs, especially harm reduction. Too many people are still dying from opioid use and drug overdose. It’s time we get more of our families, communities, healthcare workforce, and policymakers on-board to deal with the underlying mental health problems that are accelerating the opioid epidemic and killing our children and loved ones every single day.
Harm reduction is not only a moral imperative, but the most cost-effective way to help those who struggle with addiction. Please join The Jillian Foundation in this fight to prevent this frightening addiction from affecting others in our community! Together it can be done!
Our vision is to catalyze local communities around a national movement to reduce risks associated with mental health and substance use disorder by increasing access to successful treatment programs. Too many people are dying from opioid use and drug overdose. Traditional treatments are NOT working. The relapse rate is over 80% and overdoses typically happen to people relapsing.
When someone is relapsing or actively using drugs, “Harm Reduction” is a more humanistic approach to destigmatize addiction and help people without feeling judged. Alternative forms of treatment and thinking need to be discussed and deployed.
It’s time we get our families, communities, healthcare workforce, and policymakers educated to deal with the underlying problems that are accelerating the opioid epidemic and killing our children and loved ones every single day.
We will accomplish our mission through this three-fold strategy:
1. Build awareness of alternative treatment options among individuals suffering from Mental Health (MH) and Substance Use Disorder (SUD) that meets the person where they’re at.
2. Support families dealing with loved ones suffering from MH and SUD through a non-judgmental understanding of alternative treatment options.
3. Expand the workforce education, training, and roll-out of “Harm Reduction” programs at treatment centers throughout Martha’s Vineyard, Cape Cod, and surrounding communities.
PEOPLE HAVE DIED EVERY DAY FROM OPIOID-RELATED DRUG OVERDOSES IN THE U.S.
OF OPIOID OVERDOSE DEATHS IN MASSACHUSETTS WERE ATTRIBUTED TO FENTANYL.
PEOPLE MISUSED PRESCRIPTION OPIOIDS IN THE U.S.
Jillian Slatas passed away on November 12th of an overdose while self-medicating using heroin, which was laced with fentanyl. This drug is killing people at a rapid rate. It’s an epidemic that has no prejudice. All families from every social, economic, and racial background are affected by this epidemic. Jillian fought addiction and mental disorders for several years. She graduated Bentley College in 2013 with Honors in Marketing. She wanted to help people, so she went back to school to become a Nurse. While at Bentley, she was prescribed Tramadol from her Physician which started her struggle with addiction.
After various treatment centers, and relapses Jillian arrived at Gosnold in Falmouth where she entered the Women’s Center for 90 days and hired a sober coach after being released. Jillian was sober for just shy of three years, working at the detox center at Gosnold. She relapsed the Spring of 2017 and attempted stop multiple times, and did so for months at a time.
That fall of November 12, 2017 she slipped again, but the fentanyl in the heroin was too potent and killed her.
Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod are known to be home for the wealthy and privileged, though has a heritage of a very diverse community and is not being spared. Jillian grew up spending summers on the Vineyard in Chilmark and Aquinnah, this was her spiritual home. Jillian was a woman who was magnetic. When you were in her presence it felt like a cool wave washing over you on a warm summer day, she immediately brought you comfort and joy. Her big brown eyes would stare deep into your soul and without even having to utter a word, she got it. She absorbed everything. She literally felt every emotion you were feeling, Jillian had a gift. Her infectious and silly personality would often have you in stitches with laughter and make you feel alive. She had an undeniable fiery, and confident spirit that made you feel irrevocably invincible. She truly challenged every individual to be the best version of themselves. When you would watch her dance she was like a fairy floating and spinning through the clouds with grace. She would often tease her sister about how uncoordinated she was and questioned how they could be related sometimes. She could often charm her way into any situation, and convince you of anything. Whether it was sneaking up onto the roof to watch the stars, or help rearrange her bedroom furniture at 12AM on a school night.
Her strong spirit is undeniably present with us today and is the driving force to create a powerful change in our society, that is suffering from addiction. Let us help make a change to prevent the reoccurring drug epidemic that is taking over our nation.
What we do
All donations and proceeds from the inaugural Jillian’s Angelic Dreams fundraiser on July 28, 2019 and subsequent fundraising will be used to provide harm reduction training and resources at Gosnold, Bentley University, and Martha’s Vineyard Community Services—institutions that are on the frontlines tackling Massachusetts’ opioid epidemic and also a few places that have touched Jillian’s life in some way, shape, or form. More specifically, the monies will go towards world-class experts, training, and resources in the area of harm reduction, which will in turn support the direct service providers and programs at Gosnold, Bentley University, and Martha’s Vineyard Community Services. When someone is relapsing or actively using drugs, “harm reduction” is a more humanistic approach to destigmatize addiction and help people without them feeling judged. In essence, alternative forms of treatment and thinking need to be discussed and deployed.
Press and Media
Photos & Videos
“Alan Slatas doesn’t like the word “clean” to describe a person who’s battling addiction. “They’re not dirty if they’re using,” he said in an interview with The Times. “They’re human.”
Alan’s daughter, Jillian Slatas, died from an overdose of heroin laced with fentanyl on Nov. 12, 2017. She was 26 years old. Slatas was halfway to her apartment in Falmouth when he got the call.
The nonprofit is aimed at promoting and raising money for alternative treatment programs on the Cape and Islands. The Slatas are longtime seasonal residents, and while Jillian lived and worked in Falmouth, she considered the Vineyard her ‘soul home’, according to her father.”
MV Times / Read Full Article
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