Gina Bardach founded the group Hope and OVERcoming, Inc. that started in Fishers, IN back in the fall of 2014 after a battle of a heroin addiction with her youngest son.
Brandon had been in sobriety for a year and a half when she decided it was time to make some changes in her community and home town after watching her son lose more than a dozen friends due to this terrible epidemic of opiate prescription and heroin addiction.
Every city and small town in America is struggling with this opiate crisis and the discussion was not happening. With the efforts of this grassroots organization the awareness has widely spread and the discussion started happening.
Sadly, when the family discovered that Brandon was deep in the midst of opiate and heroin addiction there had been nothing public about this crisis other than the stereotype of the homeless, hopeless and worthless that society wanted to believe was isolated to such a class. Brandon had lost friends due to overdose death prior to his sobriety and continued to lose friends for another two years. At age 23 he had been to 13 funerals and could name 16 individuals he grew up with that had passed away.
This health crisis has been largely unheard of and parents were ashamed, scared of being shunned and had very little resources for help. With the help and strength of community members this group started out with two handfuls of people ready to break down the barriers and create HOPE for others.
Brandon and his family knew that because his addiction was 18 months into recovery it didn't mean the crisis was over. Staying silent KILLS and offering a hand of hope to neighbors and strangers SAVES.
Brandon Villa remains in sobriety today and has since testified at the Indiana State House in an effort to help SB-406 become a law, Aaron's Law, in honor of Aarons Sims who passed away from a heroin overdose in October of 2013. A Lawrence North Quarterback on the football team.
After three years, Hope and OVERcoming, inc. has been present in schools across Hamilton County, juveniles, and public forums educating young people and others about the dangers of experimenting with drugs and the progression to opiates, advocated with elected officials to help create change through education, helped facilitate countless individuals into treatment suited for them, family planning for recovery, family support groups, and created an educational documentary that has been seen in health classes at schools.
Losing nearly 129 people per day due to prescription drug and heroin overdoses is more than gun fatalities and traffic accidents. We can't stop, join us in our fight!
Fighting against addiction and fighting for RECOVERY! It's possible!