DV8 Kitchen opens new location on Overdose Awareness Day

Tuesday is Overdose Awareness Day in Kentucky
Published: Aug. 31, 2021 at 12:02 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Tuesday marks overdose awareness day— a day to remember those who have died and to support people battling addiction.

DV8 Kitchen in Lexington marked the day with the opening of a second location. The restaurant helps give people in recovery a new start.

With 14 different businesses using them for their baking needs, the owner of DV8 kitchen said expanding their bakery was a big part of opening their second location.

They opened a 1000-square-foot bakery, and a new restaurant at the corner of Midland and Third Streets Tuesday morning.

“We’re super excited to serve the people of Lexington. Our first day has been wonderful,” owner Rob Perez said.

The timing was no coincidence. Perez said he wanted to commemorate International Overdose Awareness Day.  DV8 hires people who are transitioning from addiction to recovery. An art installation is a memorial to that fight.

“We have an installation by a metal artist where you could light a candle, say the person in recovery’s name that you want to support. Because we want to keep them in recovery and away from harm, Perez said.

A peer support specialist from Louisa said the isolation during the pandemic has been a driving factor in the rise of overdoses the past year and a half. They went up by almost 49% in 2020.

“Isolation is a big deal for an addict. Because we have so much time on our hands,” Eukie Ward said.

Ward lost her aunt to an overdose in June of last year. She has been sober a little over two years. She said having a job has helped a lot with her recovery.

“I have to remind myself daily in this job I do that I can’t save these people,” Ward said. “I can only plant a seed and show them my experience, strength, and help. But when I lost her I really had to believe that. Because I felt guilty that I couldn’t have done something to save her.”

That purpose and opportunity are two thins Perez said he’s happy to provide.

“Believe it’s just having an opportunity to have a job when you have a past is really the hallmark of occurring business. I would love to encourage any other business to do it as well,” Perez said.

Several state leaders recognized Overdose Awareness day on Tuesday Frankfort. You can watch it here.

While Tuesday is Overdose Awareness Day, Wednesday, September 1 is the beginning of Recovery Month.

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