Youth Group Creates Nationwide Campaign to Address Deadly Drug Emergency 

Photo by Karolina Grabowska:

As the national health threat of fentanyl and xylazine (“tranq dope”) continues to devastate communities nationwide, Young People in Recovery (YPR) is rallying the parents of young people affected by the ongoing addiction crisis—and parents who are in recovery themselves—to provide support and strategies to prevent overdose deaths. The goal is to expand the organization’s network of 54 community-based chapters to provide peer recovery support services to more young people in crisis.

YPR is based in Loveland.

YPR’s #PainToPurpose campaign launched on Mother’s Day (May 14) and will culminate on Father’s Day (June 18). On Monday, June 12 at 6 pm MT, YPR will host a special online support group for fathers and families impacted by addiction and overdose led by Rich Pagano, an acclaimed musician, and performer who lost his beloved son Nic to an accidental overdose of fentanyl. Rich has now become a certified sober coach and parent liaison.

The substance use epidemic disproportionately affects youth and young adults: drug overdoses are now the number-one cause of accidental death in the U.S., with more than six in 10 deaths of young adults involving an opioid. YPR offers a lifeline: community-based tools and resources so young people can recover and reach their full potential. Services are provided in English and Spanish, in-person and virtually. Best of all, YPR programs are 100% free to participants. #PainToPurpose is a national campaign to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and provide solutions to save lives.


About YPR: YPR has 54 chapters in 19 states serving youth and young adults in recovery from substance use disorder. YPR was founded in 2010 by a group of young people (under age 30) who wanted to help others. YPR envisions a world where all young people have the resources they need to thrive in recovery from addiction to drugs and alcohol. YPR’s mission is to provide the life skills and peer support to help people recover from substance use disorder and reach their full potential. Visit or our social channels to learn more.

About Rich Pagano: For the last 25 years, Rich Pagano has made a living as a New York City session drummer, singer, and touring musician. His recording, producing, and stage credits include Patti Smith, Roseanne Cash, Robbie Robertson, Ray Davies, Roger Waters, Elvis Costello, and the premier Beatles tribute band, the Fab Faux, of which he is a founding member.

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