As network members and allies, we are involved in advocacy in our regions, on a national and sometimes on an international level. We share information, and work jointly, as well as independently, and most importantly we support each other emotionally and in our advocacy. We do so under the umbrella of the mandate and goals of MSTH (see Our Goals page).
Some members are also involved in other local or national organisations that share our vision.
How can I get involved?
There are two main roles within the MSTH network:
- Allies may be individuals who:
- Support our work, but are not able to actively engage in advocacy. Many allies are recently bereaved parents, who need all their strength to cope with the new situation.
- Have a family member who is using substances or is in recovery.
- Are family members or close friends of network members.
- As an ally you can add your name and place of residence to our webpage (see Network Allies page) and, if you have lost a loved one to substance use, any information you are comfortable to share publicly (e.g.name, date of death, age, cause of death). You do not need to give your full name or location if you prefer not to.
- In addition to adding your name you can provide a photo of your loved one (see the page Our Children). You also have the option to just provide the child’s photo without adding your name.
- We hope that allies will support our efforts by adding their name to letters we write, coming to regional events, and by sharing the information from our Facebook page and website.
- When you are ready and able you can become an active network member.
- Are active in their advocacy, and are working towards achieving MSTH Goals (see Our Goals page).
- Some of us actively participate in, or support any of the activities below:
- Meet with or write to MLAs, MPs or city councillors
- Give media interviews
- Attend or give presentations to high school students, university students, or service clubs
- Attend or speak at harm reduction events, such as Overdose Awareness day
- Attend or present at conferences and meetings
- Help local harm reduction initiatives by sharing our stories
- As a network member you can:
- add your name, and your child’s name, story, and photo to our website (see Network Members and Our Children pages)
- Actively contribute media stories and other information to our Facebook Page
- Share personal blogs about on our journey on our website (see Personal Blog page).
- Stay in touch via social media and through Slack.
- Those who are able, try to meet in person once or twice a year, and those in the same region, meet on a more frequent basis.
How active you are as an advocate, varies greatly depending on your personal situation. It is up to you and we all work together to bring about change. If you are new to advocacy we will help you with formulating a letter, setting up a meeting, giving a presentation, or speaking to the media. To be part of the network does not obligate any of us to do anything you are not comfortable with.
Why get involved?
We need to end the stigma and the silence. We need to treat addiction as a health condition and not a personal failing. We do so in memory of the children we lost.
If you support a new approach based on reducing harm, where people who use drugs are treated with respect, compassion, and support, don’t hesitate. Join today!
The families of Moms Stop The Harm.