Opioid Response Training for Shelters and Support Organizations
Designed for frontline staff and volunteers.

Opioid Response Training for Homeless Shelters and Support Organizations

Opioid poisonings are on the rise across Canada, including at shelters and other homeless-serving organizations. More frontline workers than ever are witnessing and managing poisonings at their workplace. As a result, there is a growing need for education and access to naloxone*.  

*Naloxone is a medicine that rapidly reverses the effects of opioids on the brain. It is an important tool that can save the life of someone experiencing an opioid poisoning. 

Program Overview  

To help meet this growing need, St. John Ambulance is now offering an Opioid Poisoning Response Training program*. The OPRT is a two-step program that provides training and nasal naloxone to frontline workers in homeless-serving organizations. Some examples of organizations that are eligible for this program include shelters, harm reduction sites, peer support groups, libraries, and more.  

To register your organization, please contact us to confirm your eligibility. Your staff and volunteers can then sign up for our interactive online training. The class takes 90 minutes to complete and is divided into four sections:  

• Stigma & Harm Reduction 

  • How to respond to an opioid poisoning 
  • How to administer nasal Naloxone 
  • Self-Care after a Traumatic Event 

After your training, you will receive a shipment of nasal naloxone kits to your workplace. Trained staff and volunteers can use these kits in the event of a poisoning. A standard shipment includes two nasal naloxone kits for each worker that has completed the course. If your staff respond to poisonings frequently and need a larger supply of nasal naloxone, contact our team to discuss your options. As per Health Canada regulations, these kits are only for use by trained staff/volunteers. They should not be distributed to untrained staff or clients. 

This program operates with the support of Health Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada. 

* Due to Health Canada regulations, this program does not operate in Quebec. If your organization is located in Quebec and you are looking for opioid-related resources, please visit PROFAN. 

Please be advised you will be taken to a form off of this site.

Additional Resources

React and Reverse: Opioid Poisoning Response Training Brochure

Find basic information about React and Reverse: Opioid Poisoning Response Training from SJA in this informative brochure.

Suspect an Opioid Poisoning Poster

A valuable poster for home, work, or play. This poster outlines the important steps to help if you suspect opioid poisoning.

Opioid and Naloxone Training

Find a Naloxone Kit in Your Region

Many Provinces or Territories offer access to Naloxone kits. Find one near you.

Client Feedback
"This training is vital in ensuring that harm reduction is the focus in providing care and that we rid ourselves of any stigmas or presumptions we might have in dealing with addiction."

About St. John Ambulance

St. John Ambulance is an international humanitarian organization and is a foundation of the Order of St. John. As Canada’s standard for excellence in First Aid and CPR services, St. John Ambulance offers innovative programs, ensuring Canadians receive the best quality training. Revenue generated from First Aid/CPR training supports St. John Ambulance’s charitable work in the community.