42 new 'Hometown Heroes' of North Jersey honored Last year, Rep. Josh Gottheimer had an idea to honor ordinary citizens who are doing extraordinary things to improve the lives of others in the 5th Congressional District. He asked community leaders to nominate those who were making a positive difference and, in December, feted 20 North [...]
There were almost 70,000 fatal drug overdoses by the end of 2017, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Each one of those deaths was uniquely tragic — and Stephanie Reifman wants their stories to be heard. Stephanie first started researching the opioid crisis in 2013, after she heard about Cory Monteith’s overdose. Monteith [...]
Why were you inspired you to create/begin your project? I was inspired to create my heroin awareness project, H.A.P.P.Y. (Heroin Addiction Prevents People’s Years) Week, in 2013 after my favorite actor, Cory Monteith died of a heroin overdose. I had always been a huge fan of his and of the show and I was devastated [...]
Upper Saddle River Teen Stephanie Reifman Wins National Award for Heroin Education Program The problem with student heroin education, Stephanie Reifman decided at age 13, was that no one was listening. Five ears later, Reifman's HAPPY (Heroin Addiction Prevents People's Years) Week heroin program for middle and high school students has earned her a $36,000 [...]
UPPER SADDLE RIVER — The problem with student heroin education, Stephanie Reifman decided at age 13, was that no one was listening. Five years later, Reifman's HAPPY Week heroin program for middle and high school students has earned her a $36,000 Helen Diller Foundation Teen Tikkun Olam ("repair the world") Award, one of only 15 [...]
Local teen lauded for creative efforts to prevent drug addiction In the summer of 2013, when Stephanie Reifman of Upper Saddle River was 13, Cory Monteith — one of her favorite actors — died of a heroin overdose. “I was devastated,” she said. “I loved him and I loved ‘Glee,’” the TV program he starred [...]
For her work on HAPPY Week, Stephanie has been awarded the Youth Achievement Award by the New Jersey Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics. She will receive the award at the New Jersey Children's Ball in April 2018 in Somerset, NJ.
MIDLAND PARK – When 26-year-old Samantha Nerney tried heroin for the first time, it didn’t feel like she was playing with fire. The addictive nature of the drug escaped her. “I didn’t know,” she said matter-of-factly. “I just knew how it made me feel.” After years of struggling with drug and alcohol abuse that robbed [...]