In 2017, after the heart-wrenching loss of my son, Anthony Reno, Jr. due to fentanyl poisoning, I started a foundation with one simple task in mind. The task was to raise funds for a few parents who did not have the financial means to have a proper memorial at their loved one’s place of rest. This was the grass roots of Not My Child . We named the foundation this because most individuals believe that opioids will not affect their families. The tragic reality is that no one is immune to being touched by this epidemic. It’s time that we, as a society, erase the stigma related to the opioid crisis and address awareness and prevention while helping individuals in need.
In the past several years, through numerous events and community participation, our dedicated sponsors, donors, volunteers and participants have helped us achieve a grandeur variety of accolades. A few of our fundraising events we’ve hosted are several 5K runs (“Anthony’s Run”), a crab feast and cornhole tournament (“Carson Freedman’s Crab Feast & Cornhole Tournament”), black-tie casino galas (“Carmen’s Charity Casino Gala”) and a rockfish tournament (“Lil’ Amp’s Bent Rods Rockfish Tournament”).
We are proud recipients of the State of Maryland Comptroller’s Office “2021 William Donald Schaeffer Helping People Award” for Queen Anne’s County, Maryland as well as two State of Maryland Governor’s Citations for our efforts to combat drug addiction. In addition, we won the Shore Update magazine’s 2021 “Gold Anchor Award” for being an “Organization that Makes Our Community a Better Place.”
At Not My Child we place the utmost importance on implementing and promoting awareness and prevention campaigns. We also provide assistance to individuals in recovery by covering copays and supporting mental health. We have implemented the annual “Anthony Reno, Jr. Scholarship Fund” at Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Maryland to be awarded to eligible students applying to receive their Substance Abuse Counseling Certificate. We’ve spread our awareness campaigns other local charities that have the like minded purpose to better our community as well such as Celebrate Recovery, Queen Anne’s County Goes Purple, Compass Hospice, Crossroads Community Behavioral Health Recovery, the Jacob Sloan Foundation, The Julianne Rosela Foundation, Team Trace Foundation and the Giving the Edge Foundation to name a few.
In 2023, we adapted our program, Project Restart. So often an individual leaving recovery isn't left with many positive opportunities or pathways. This often leaves them stuck back in the same cycle and at a greater risk for relapse. All of the hard work and effort needs to have a finish line and positive outcome for these individuals. This program allows us to be a liaison between recovered individuals and potential employees to assist with job placement, vocational training costs, tools, and education. We help guide them onto a clear positive path. The goal of Project Restart as well as our foundation is to save families from the heartbreak surrounding the opioid crisis and aid in developing meaningful success stories instead.
We want to thank everyone who continues to support our initiative. Your support means so much and allows us to continue to grow and make an impact on eliminating the opioid crisis in our community and beyond.
Anthony Reno, Sr.