Eva’s Village Gala honored community partners working to fight the opioid epidemic, raising over $674,000 to set new record

“When you take someone’s hand, you cannot let it go until they can stand on their own two feet,” Msgr. Puma, founder of Eva’s Village.

On, November 2, Eva’s Village’s ‘Visions of Hope’ Benefit Gala raised more than $674,000, topping last year’s total by nearly $35,000. The funds will support the comprehensive network of services Eva’s Village offers to members of our community who are struggling with hunger and poverty, addiction, and mental illness. Eva’s 20 programs have offered stability and a helping hand to thousands of men, women, and children each year since 1982. The event was held at The Grove in Cedar Grove, NJ.

This year’s event celebrated the organization’s 35th anniversary, and put a spotlight on the growing opioid epidemic that is gripping our nation—and on Eva’s efforts to reduce the numbers of deaths from overdose in Paterson and in Passaic County. Since it opened as a soup Kitchen in 1982, Eva’s Village has found new ways to meet ever-changing needs in our community for food, shelter, recovery and medical care, education and job training. The Gala honored several partners in innovation, who are working with Eva’s Village to save and change lives.


Dr. Mark Rosenberg, Chief Innovation Officer and Chair of the Emergency Department at St. Joseph’s Health, received the “Where Hope Begins” award for his work to reduce opioid prescriptions and bring recovery services to overdose patients. He pioneered the ALTO (Alternatives to Opiates) program, making St. Joseph’s Hospital the first in the nation to stem the use of opiates for pain management, with a 50% reduction in the use of opioids by in St. Joseph’s emergency room. Since April of 2016, Dr. Rosenberg has been working with Eva’s Village through the Opioid Overdose Recovery Program, which brings Eva’s peer recovery specialists to overdose patients’ hospital bedsides to help them on the road to treatment.

The Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth, who founded St. Joseph’s Hospital in Paterson 150 years ago, were honored with the “Community Service Award” for their vital role in the foundation and growth of Eva’s Village and their contributions to the Paterson community.

Eva’s peer…

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