SOURCE: Vanderbilt Financial Group

Vanderbilt Financial Group

SOURCE: John Brower Jr. Foundation

John Brower Jr. Foundation

September 29, 2016 09:00 ET

John Brower Jr. Foundation Hosts Second Annual Walk for Heroin Addiction Awareness and Prevention

On Saturday October 8th the John Brower Jr. Foundation Will Host Their Second Annual Walk at Jones Beach to Raise Awareness to the Opiate Epidemic on Long Island

DIX HILLS, NY--(Marketwired - September 29, 2016) - The John Brower Jr. Foundation will hold their second annual 5k walk at Jones Beach on Saturday, October 8th to raise awareness of the opiate epidemic here on Long Island. The walk also aims to raise funds for the Outreach Project, an organization that provides rehabilitation services for those who are affected by addiction.

Registration for the walk begins at 9am at Field 5 with the walk start time promptly at 10am. This family-friendly event is open to both runners and walkers and is rain or shine. Sponsors include Astoria Bank, The Jantzen and Morales Family Dunkin Donuts, and Vanderbilt Financial Group. All participants will receive a foundation t-shirt, water bottles and Dunkin Donuts will be available, and parking in Field 5 is free.

In 2014, parents John and Jody Brower suffered the tragic loss of their son John Jr. to a heroin overdose. John Jr. was prescribed painkillers for an injury sustained in a car accident, which led to his addiction to the prescription drug Oxycodone. Not long after the family's loss, siblings Robert and Kristen memorialized their brother with a Facebook page. The outpouring of love and support they received motivated the family to shine a light on the often-overlooked issue of addiction and become a force for change.

"The Brower Family is making a difference, from the beginning, they were brave, at the wake of their son, John Jr., they talked about heroin abuse, opiates and the situation here on Long Island in families of all socioeconomic backgrounds," says Vanderbilt Financial Group CEO Steve Distante. "Rather than hide in shame they are bringing the Heroin epidemic out of the darkness and bringing this tragic reality to the public arena to help those in need and to educate and inform the public, especially parents, how to deal with this addiction. I am proud to be on the board of directors and to be honored to have helped form the foundation that has and will save lives of those we love."

In October of 2015, just four months after establishing the John Brower Jr. Foundation, the Browers held their first 5k walk at Jones Beach to bring awareness to the issue of addiction. The event drew over 400 walkers and supporters raising over $40,000 for the Outreach Project.

Over the course of their first year, the foundation was extremely successful in their efforts to provide lifesaving education and fund rehabilitation services that aim to ultimately help end the opiate epidemic on Long Island and throughout our country. John Brower Sr., a volunteer firefighter, held Narcan trainings (a drug administered to treat narcotic overdoses in an emergency situation) throughout the local community at firehouses, libraries, and schools. The foundation was featured in multiple news outlets, most notably on a segment of the ABC News program Long Island Viewpoint with Ken Rosato. With the hope of generating even more fundraising outlets, the Browers have registered the John Brower Jr. Foundation with Amazon Smile. Amazon offers an amazing opportunity for charitable organizations to receive 0.5% of the price of eligible Amazon Smile purchases with no additional charge to the buyer. Shoppers can participate in the program at smile.amazon.com by choosing John Brower Jr Foundation Inc. in the charitable organization section.

"Our goal for this year's walk is to raise awareness about this horrific disease and also to let the community know there is help out there, all they have to do is ask. We have to do something now. This disease is destroying our youth. Our goal is to help other families from suffering the same loss as we have. We knew that we were doing something right when people were coming up to us at last year's walk asking where they could get help," says John Brower Jr Foundation Board Member and mother, Jody Brower.

Registration is available online through crowdrise or through the John Brower Jr. Foundation website. The fee to register is $20 per walker; all are encouraged to create teams or send donations if unable to attend. To register for this year's walk or to make a donation you can go to www.johnbrowerjrfoundation.org, www.heroesagainstheroin.org, or https://www.crowdrise.com/The2ndAnnualJohnBrowerJrFoundation5kWalk.

The Browers encourage anyone who is in need of help or advice, interested in attending the walk, or looking to make a donation, to please feel free to contact them.

ABOUT JOHN BROWER JR. FOUNDATION: The John Brower Jr. Foundation aspires to become a premier provider of education and assistance in preventing lives from being lost to the horrific opiate and heroin epidemic that plagues our country. We have combined our efforts with those of programs such as The Outreach Program to help provide life-changing drug and alcohol abuse treatment services. We want to shed light on the current issues being faced every day while inspiring individuals and their families to achieve lives of awareness and unlimited potential.

About Vanderbilt Financial Group: Founded in 1965 and located in Woodbury, NY, Vanderbilt Financial Group is an Independent Broker Dealer known as the Sustainable Broker Dealer committed to investing with purpose. The firm offers Impact Investments in socially and/or environmentally responsible, ethical, and impactful opportunities. In 2014 the firm was recognized with the MAP Vital Factors Solutions® Presidential Award for achieving excellence through implementing the MAP Management System™ and in 2015 became the first LEED Platinum office building on Long Island. Vanderbilt's refreshing, unique, and innovative culture is a driving force to constantly strive to positively impact their community. To learn more, check out http://joinvanderbilt.com/.

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