LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Community leaders gathered in Little Rock Monday morning to kick off a week of raising awareness of the dangers of drug overdoses and efforts to help those in recovery in Arkansas.

A ribbon-cutting at the Wolfe Street Center celebrated a proclamation by Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders designating this week as Purple Ribbon Awareness Week.

Organizers of Monday’s event said the purpose behind the purple ribbon is to raise awareness about drug overdose deaths and reduce the stigma of the disease.

Many of those in attendance at the ribbon cutting said they know firsthand what it’s like to lose someone they love to an overdose and have made it their mission to educate others.

“Individuals and groups, communities that come together like this really make a difference in the lives of those who are left with the surviving trauma from the loss of their loved ones,” Tom Fisher, state drug director stated.

The week also marks International Overdose Awareness Day on Thursday, Aug. 31, and the start of Recovery Awareness Month on Sept. 1.

As part of International Overdose Awareness Day, the 4th annual Bridge the Gap overdose & fentanyl poisoning awareness event will be happening Aug. 31 at the Clinton Presidential Library, with a bridge lighting and memorial service at sundown.

As part of Recovery Awareness Month, the Wolfe Street Foundation will also be hosting their 2023 Alcohol and Drug Overdose Day of Action Sept. 16 at 1015 S. Louisiana Street. To register for the event, visit

To learn more about National Recovery Month, visit or