Hanley Foundation, a statewide leader in substance use disorder prevention, education, and advocacy for access to quality treatment, has announced Barbara Shafer as its Director of Education.
In this newly-created position, Shafer will be responsible for designing and facilitating new education initiatives and identifying funding streams.
She is currently leading weekly forums throughout Palm Beach County for the Foundation’s Project C4OPE, a program designed to connect families who share the experience of a loved one who has died of opioid overdose, survived an overdose, or are at high risk for overdose.
Palm Beach County leads the state in opioid-related overdose deaths, with more than 600 recorded in 2017 alone and more than 5,000 total opioid overdoses recorded in 2016. Hanley Foundation has partnered with Palm Beach County and the Southeast Florida Behavioral Health Network on Project C4OPE.
Ms. Shafer, of Jupiter, spent 30 years in marketing and publishing before joining Hanley Foundation, and has a personal connection to her work.
In 2015, her daughter Alison died from opioid addiction-related causes.
“As a mother, all you want to do is care for your children and not see them suffer,” said Ms. Shafer.
“But I learned through my experience that not only is it OK to continue to love someone struggling with addiction or who has overdosed, it’s also important family and friends care for themselves, too.
At Hanley Foundation, we understand family and friends often feel judged or inadequate because they could not prevent their loved one’s overdose.
I am proud to be working on Project C4OPE and am looking forward to implementing new education programs to enhance the Foundation’s mission.”
Jan Cairnes, CEO of Hanley Foundation, said Ms. Shafer’s new role will help the Foundation offer more and varied educational programming, which is a priority of its mission.
“This position, and Barbara’s extensive background as a skilled communications executive, give us many opportunities to reach new audiences and engage more areas of our community to help prevent addiction before it starts and to assist those who are struggling themselves, or love someone with a substance use disorder,” said Cairnes.
“Barbara is a talented addition to our team, and her own experience makes her uniquely qualified to speak to families struggling in the addiction crisis.”
Ms. Shafer received her bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Dayton.
She has participated in numerous local community organizations as well as volunteering her time to philanthropic efforts for students through the Alliance of Women Executives (AWE) and is an ambassador for ALwayS for ALS, Inc.
She participated in the HGTC Addiction Lecture Series in Myrtle Beach, SC in 2016 and has now made it her mission to bring hope to those families and individuals who have been affected by addiction and/or have lost children to addiction.
Through the end of September, Shafer will be leading the Project C4OPE forums each Thursday from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the following locations:
• Glades Region: second Thursday of each month (July 12, Aug. 9, Sept. 13) —Lakeside Medical Center, 39200 Hooker Highway, Belle Glade
• North County: first Thursday of each month (July 5, Aug. 2, Sept. 6) — Beach House Center for Recovery, 13321 U.S. 1, Juno Beach
• South County: third Thursday of each month (July 19, Aug. 16, Sept. 20) — Guardian Recovery Network, 3333 S. Congress Ave., Suite 402, Delray Beach
• Central County: fourth Thursday of each month (June 28, July 26, Aug. 23, Sept. 27) — Hanley Center at Origins, 933 45th St., West Palm Beach
For more information about Project C4OPE, please visit www.hanleyfoundation.org/project-c4ope/ or call 561-268-2357.