Resources suggested by our panel

  • The Surgeon General’s Landmark Report: Facing Addiction in America

  • Allies in Recovery
    An online-learning platform for families whose loved one struggles with drugs or alcohol.

  • Learn to Cope   A non-profit support network that offers education, resources, peer support and hope for parents and family members coping with a loved one addicted to opiates or other drugs. 
  • Childhood Adverse Experiences (ACES Study)
    Childhood experiences are an important public health issue. Both positive and negative, they have a tremendous impact on future violence victimization and perpetration, and lifelong health and opportunity.

  • The Brien Center  Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services ~ provides a continuum of care for children, adolescents, adults and families who suffer from serious and persistent behavioral health disorders.
  • Addiction as a Brain Disease Series of videos by Dr. Potee on the causes of addiction (genetics, early exposure and childhood trauma) and how they affect the brain; and making a case for treating addiction as a disease – not a character flaw.


Call to Action suggestions

Prevention Works  Youth who avoid drug use in their teens and early 20's, when the brain is still developing, are much more likely to avoid life-long addiction. Recommendations from Massachusetts Governor Baker's Opioid Working Group include: a comprehensive evidence-based school curriculum that address underlying social and psychological issues and build student skills and self-confidence; parent education about signs of addiction; community coalition initiatives; local drug-free school initiatives; prescriber and patient education; and drug take-back programs.  These area a few sites with prevention ideas.

Partnership for Drug-Free Kids
Strategic Planning Initiative for Families and Youth (SPIFFY) Coalition
Hampshire HOPE - Heroin Opioid, Prevention and Education
SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF)

Recovery Centers are critical – Find out what is available in your community and what the centers need.  It might be mentoring, volunteering, sharing your skills.  Perhaps you could collect and donate items that would encourage the youth or adults that are served in programs i.e. books, gift cards, toiletries, mp3 players, earbuds, socks, etc.

Opioid Taskforce help ensure efforts are being well coordinated and are as easy to access (as much as possible) and to put out messages that recovery is possible by offering hope and help to those suffering from addiction, some communities are establishing an Opioid taskforce.  – Find out what is available in your area and what kinds of support they might need to make life easier for individuals with opioid dependence and their families, and to educate the public.  
The following are sample tools provided by the Opioid Taskforce of Franklin County and the North Quabbin Region:

Stop the Stigma – Each of us can help by changing the way we think about, talk about and treat people with addiction. The stigma of drug misuse keeps people from seeking treatment. Words like “junkie,” “addict” and “druggie” can hurt, damaging self-image and standing in the way of recovery. Addiction is not a choice. It’s a chronic disease similar to diabetes, heart disease and arthritis. Stigma is rarely based on facts but rather on assumptions, preconceptions, and generalizations; therefore, its negative impact can be prevented or lessened through education.

Educate Yourself and Others about Harm Reduction – Mandatory use of seatbelts in cars, bike helmets, hand washing, safe sex practices, infant and toddler car seats and speed limits are all harm reduction measures. Consider that harm reduction may be an approach or strategy aimed at reducing the risks and harmful effects associated with substance use and addictive behaviors. Recognizing that abstinence may be neither a realistic or a desirable goal for some users (especially in the short term), the use of substances is accepted as a fact, and the main focus is placed on reducing harm while use continues. Safe injection equipment/syringe access (“needle exchange,” naloxone (Narcan) access, and opioid replacement therapies (suboxone, methadone) are ALL harm reduction strategies.

Opioid Addiction is Treatable – Patients with physical and psychological dependence succeed much more often with an initial inpatient admission (2-3 days) at a hospital/facility where methadone or suboxone can be initiated and where they can work with a social worker to discharge them to (1) an outpatient facility for medication assisted treatment (MAT) and (2) a behavioral health connection for recovery.  Treatment saves lives AND money. For every 1$ spent treating people struggling with addiction we save society $7 that we currently spending dealing with the consequences of active addiction. Advocate for funding of evidence-based treatments in your community


Q&A published recently from AARP

What should I do if prescribed an opioid?
Ask if there is a way to deal with the pain other than taking a narcotic. If an opioid is the only option, use as little as possible and work with your doctor on "a game plan for when you will be off the opioids," says David B. Agus, M.D., professor of medicine and engineering at the University of Southern California. Avoid activities that may be affected by potent drugs, such as making critical decisions or driving.

What are the signs that I may be addicted?
"When you can't stop yourself from taking the opioid, and your tolerance to the effects of the opioid goes up, you should pay attention," Agus says. If you fear that you may be addicted, consult with your prescribing physician, he says. Also, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration offers a confidential help line that can connect you with treatment services in your state. Call 800-662-HELP (800-662-4357).

What should I do with unused opioids?
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advises that you seek out a take-back program so that experts can dispose of them. Call the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) at 800-882-9539 to find a collector in your area. If you must dispose of them yourself, the FDA offers these steps. First, mix the medicines with dirt, coffee grounds or cat litter; do not crush the tablets or capsules. Then place the mixture in a sealed plastic bag and put it in your household trash. Also, before discarding empty pill bottles, scratch out all personal information on the label.

How can I help an addicted friend?
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) advises that you try to convince your family member or friend to get a doctor's evaluation. Go to the family physician or find a specialist through the American Society of Addiction Medicine or the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry. Be positive and encouraging. Addiction is a medical matter, not a character flaw; repeated use of opioids actually changes the brain, according to NIDA's website, "Emphasize … that it takes a lot of courage to seek help for a drug problem," the site says.

How can I report a "bad" doctor?
Complaints against doctors, including those who are "prescribing drugs in excess or without legitimate reason," are handled by state medical boards, which license physicians. Find the board for your state through the directory at the Federation of State Medical Boards' website,

How can I report illegal drug sales?
Contact your local police or submit a tip to the DEA through an online form. Or call a regional DEA office; there's a directory at

At Convention in Nice during the Leadership Training, D-Advocacy Committee Chairs judged in unison human trafficking as one of the most grave human rights violations to fight as it happens in all countries worldwide whether nationally or transnationally.
The ZI CoE Committee has prepared a PPT on the “Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings”, a far-reaching and comprehensive international treaty to prevent trafficking in human beings, protect the victims and prosecute the traffickers.

Like the CoE Istanbul Convention the Anti-Trafficking Convention is open to accession by any country in the world. Therefore it is a practical tool for all Zonta Clubs worldwide to specifically fight trafficking in human beings and to advocate for non-discrimination, gender equality and women’s rights.
The PPT is provided with footnotes for detailed explanations to become an easy to use, self-explanatory advocacy tool and to serve you as a document.

To provide a complete picture on instruments fighting trafficking in human beings the PPT also covers on two foils the most important criteria of the “UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons”.

Click here to open the PowerPoint and use it as you find it appropriate for your club. 
Thank you very much for your support to fight violence against women and girls.

Warm regards
Anita Schnetzer-Spranger
Zonta International Council of Europe Committee
Empowering Women through Service and Advocacy
Sinzheim, Germany


Karla M. Roth, President of the Zonta Club of Concord

The Zonta Club of Concord developed two initiatives to commemorate 16 days of activism this year.
1. At the November 2, 2016 Business meeting every Zontians received a “Zonta Says No” ribbon to commemorate the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Woman. The program for this meeting featured a renewed call to activism with a moving ceremony remembering victims of violence from New Hampshire communities. Because 1 in 3 women have been victims of physical violence by an intimate partner, it was important that we remember these victims. At the completion of the business meeting we passed a “singing bowl” filled with slips of paper, each containing a true incidence of violence perpetrated on a local woman. Each Zontian took one slip of paper from the bowl, read the story out loud and then passed the bowl to her sister Zontian. The bowl “sang” after every reading. To complete our remembrance each Zontian took her paper slip home to remember that victim in whatever way she wished (just keeping the victim close in her heart or saying a prayer for her).
2. Compassion bracelets, a new service project developed by our service and Way and Means Committees, is raising funds in support of the Womankind Counseling Center’s newest counseling program for women who have experienced significant trauma. The 10 week program, named Women with Trauma: Learning Skills to Cope. Is a psycho-education group that focuses on learning skills to cope with the symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The bracelets made by our members are fashioned from precious stone beads and pewter charms. The beads are a donation from a community member who wanted to contribute to our Club’s mission to support local programs and services that benefit woman. So far Club members have made 125 bracelets and have voted to donate all proceeds from the sale of the bracelets to Womankind. We expect to raise over $1000 from this project.


Barbara Ziemann, President of the Burlington Club


During the 16 Days of Activism, members of the Zonta Club of Burlington joined early-morning mall walkers at the University Mall in South Burlington. Wearing orange and Zonta shirts, members got their exercise and used the opportunity to speak to other mall-walkers about Zonta and the 16 Days of Activism. We gave out short handouts, printed on orange paper, which explained the initiatives and included information about our local club. It was a great way to connect with others in the community, raise awareness about the global epidemic of violence against women and girls, and spread the word about Zonta.


bangor club 16 daysBangor ME Club

The Bangor club is partnering with local banks to display information about Zonta's campaign, to "Say No to Violence Against Women." Shown here are some of the members at People’s United Bank.

Berkshire County Club

berkshire 16daysWe are happy to share our 2017 'Real Men Say NO to Domestic Violence' calendar that was produced by the Advocacy Committee of the Zonta Club of Berkshire County. Men from all walks of life and all parts of the Berkshires joined their voices to this important cause. Order here: $15 with proceeds to benefit the club's advocacy efforts and the Elizabeth Freeman Center. Thanks to our contributors: Berkshire County Sheriffs Office And House Of Corrections, Lee High Wildcats, Berkshire West Athletic Club, Berkshire County Regional Housing, Petricca Industries / Unistress Corp, Ty Allan Jackson, Mazzeo's Ristorante Catering & Home made Pasta, Wild Oats Market, Steven Valenti's Clothing for Men, Gymfest of the Berkshires, Office of Community Correction and H & S Auto Parts and Service. Thank you all "real men"!

Soldier on ladies 2016Dana Burton, Advocacy Chair of the Quaboag Valley Club

During the 16 Days, we are posting daily pictures on Facebook of people holding our "Zonta Says No" banner with facts about violence against women. We have also encouraged members and friends to orange their Facebook page and to write letters to the editor to raise awareness on the issue of violence against women. In this picture, two women veterans from Soldier On are proudly displaying the sign.

arlington whistleBarbara Anderson, President of the Arlington Club
The Zonta Club of Arlington staged a "Blowing the Whistle" on Violence on December 3rd by giving out whistles with lighted keychains to women for safety in addition to passing out resources for women. 


Malden Club

silentwitness2silentwitness1A "Stand Out Against Domestic Violence" event was held December 5th at 5pm in downtown Malden.  The Mayor's office worked with us to use the digital billboard on Rte 1 in Malden to promote our event as well! The Silent Witnesses are life-sized red wooden figures that represent the women and men killed by the act of domestic violence. There were 15 Silent Witnesses for those killed in Massachusetts and each had a placard with the name and information about the person they represent. For more information on the Silent Witness Initiative, visit Members were joined by friends and family to show support for victims, advocate and raise awareness to the issue of domestic violence to the greater Malden community!


Sherri Topple, Advocacy Chair of Halifax


 In support of the 16 Days of Activism, I would encourage you to join our sisters at a “Tobacco Tie Workshop” on Wednesday, November 30th from 5:00-7:00pm at the International Centre, 1246 LeMarchant St. in Halifax. Attendees will learn how to make these prayer ties and learn their importance.  [Editor note:  Please share!]

This is an initiative in support of “Walking With Our Sisters” - a Commemorative Art Installation for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women of Canada and the USA. The large collaborative art piece will be made available to the public through selected galleries and locations. It will be coming to Mount St. Vincent University from January 14-February 1, 2017. It is a community-based art memorial honouring missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit people and their families.
Stantec’s new national Vice President of Aboriginal Relations, Denise Pothier, works from our Dartmouth, NS office. She is very involved in this initiative. 


District 1's total (individual and club) contributions are $18,094. While overall donations to the Foundation are down 1.7%, our district individual donations are up 31%; and while club donations are down 11% over the same time period last year, we do have one less club this biennium.

Our biennial goal is $60,000. Given the history and timeline of giving within the district, we are certainly in line with achieving this goal, but we will need all members and clubs to support the Foundation to do so. In addition, we want to continue to meet the long standing goal of having all clubs within our district donate to the Foundation and increase the number of clubs that have 100% member donation. Last biennium, three District 1 clubs were recognized at convention for the latter achievement. There is no doubt in my mind that we can meet or exceed that accomplishment.

Read more: An Update on the Foundation

ZIConvention2018LogoRsJune 29 - July 3, 2018: Zonta International Convention 2018 ~ PACIFICO Yokohama Convention Center

Dallas June 7 - June 9, 2019 Zonta International North American Interdistrict Conference (NAIDM) in Dallas TX at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Dallas - DFW Airport South 



logo drft

Check out handouts distributed at the OFFICIAL District 1 Fall Conference of the biennium on October 20-22, 2017 



2017 Zonta International North American Interdistrict Conference (NAIDM) Virginia and Washington DC

Workshop presentation material (PDFs) for the various workshops are now available for download.
Click here

Meet the Needs of Underserved Women - Karen Macier
Sustained Service - Mary Ellen Bittner
Partner to Make an Impact - Judy Kautz