XENIA — A local public health educator with Greene County Public Health recently received an award from the Ohio Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE).
Melody Kingsley, who coordinates the Harm Reduction Program for SafeTrade Syringe Services Program and Project DAWN, Ohio’s Overdose Education and Naloxone Distribution Program, received the 2022 Outstanding Contributions to Health Education Award. She is also the chair of the Ohio Overdose Prevention Network’s Syringe Services Program Workgroup.
Kingsley was nominated by Greene County Board of Health member Sylvia Ellison.
Ellison’s nomination included the following: “In a relatively conservative county, Melody has provided much local community and organizational education regarding the concept and practice of harm reduction, and stigma reduction. This has occurred with her convening of annual substance use disorder recovery events, where there is inclusion of people with lived experience with harm reduction, sharing that there are more avenues to recovery than abstinence only. She also served on the county substance use disorder coalition, giving several educational presentations, and convening a work group on harm reduction. Melody implemented the local public health Harm Reduction program, which includes Project DAWN and [the SafeTrade] Syringes Service Program — syringe exchange, with other harm reduction components such as fentanyl test strips. Melody also implemented a mail order naloxone program for Greene County as an expansion of Project DAWN reach during [the] COVID-19 [pandemic]. Melody’s local public health mail order naloxone program was spotlighted by the Public Health National Center for Innovations (PHNCI), a division of PHAB, as a story of public health innovation. She has also been an invited presenter at the Ohio Injury Prevention Partnership (OIPP) meetings.”
This nomination was read during the Ohio SOPHE board meeting Dec. 9, at which time Kingsley accepted the award from Ohio SOPHE President Grant Seredick.