AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A three-day music festival kicked off Friday in Austintown, but the event is more than just a concert.
Rock Against Heroin is being held at the California Palms Hotel on Route 46 in Austintown to bring awareness to heroin addiction.
All money raised at the event will go towards efforts to battle the heroin epidemic in the Valley by helping to fund recovery housing for First Step Recovery in Warren.
Ted St. John, First Step Recovery, said recovery housing is pivotal in the drug addiction recovery process. He said state money helps fund treatment programs, but doesn’t cover housing afterwards.
The live-in facility that First Step Recovery oversees is resident-determined and provides help with real-life issues for recovering addicts that are moving forward in their treatment.
“It allows them to learn to live clean with support and structure and accountability from peers rather than, like in treatment, from counselors and medical professionals,” St. John said. “It really helps them learn to live again and helps them overcome the wreckage of the past.”
In 2015, Trumbull County recorded 89 drug overdose deaths, compared to 54 in 2014 and 37 in 2013. Mahoning County had 60 overdose deaths in 2015 and Columbiana County recorded 30.
Rock Against Heroin is also scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, which has been designated “Sober Sunday.”
Programming begins at noon and runs until midnight on Saturday, and until 8 p.m. on Sunday. A $10 donation will be taken at the door.