The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines advocacy in this way… The act or process of supporting a cause or proposal:

When City of Angels began in 2008, with the tragic overdose death of KC Meara, we never considered that much of what we were about to do would actually be called advocacy, as we just wanted to help people get help. Very quickly we came to realize that the opioid epidemic was growing exponentially and we needed support from other parents, medical professionals, law enforcement, people in recovery, our legislators and the community in general.

We learned that Advocacy means getting support from another person to help you express your views and wishes, and help you stand up for your rights. Someone who helps you in this way is called your advocate and COA certainly needed more advocates!



National Advocacy
Standing in the White House Kevin Meara stated “When our journey began, one we never asked for, I could never have fathomed that it would take us from my son’s bedroom to the White House East Room.”


We set out to tell the story, our story, of the opioid epidemic’s impact on our kids, our families and our community. We began speaking at meetings, in schools, at church groups and forums.  We began contacting anyone who we thought would listen and in the beginning it was difficult, as the stigma was astounding. We heard comments like “well I’d like to help, but these kids did this to themselves you know” and “she is an addict and this is an ER. we have to help the people who really need it.” Eventually more and more people began to be impacted and so more people started to listen…


Veteran Advocacy
City of Angels Warrior Down veterans meet with NJ Congressman Andy Kim to discuss the Fr Vincent R. Capodanno Veteran’s Research Therapeutics.
Warrior Down veterans advocate for Veterans Treatment Courts before the NJ Assembly Military and Veterans Affairs Committee Hearing.


COA Board members Michele Schreffler and Kevin Meara meet with DEA Administer Anne Milgram at the DEA’s Family Summit at DEA Headquarters in Washington, DC.
City of Angels was invited by then Attorney General Jeff Sessions to present at the first DOJ Opioid Summit.





On a lighter moment at the first White House Opioid Summit, President Donald Trump takes a selfie with COA Founder Kevin Meara.


Then NJ Gov. Chris Christie met with parents at the City of Angels headquarters to discuss their needs.





Maryann and Kevin Meara, original founders and the parents of KC Meara appeared to The Dr Oz show as they advocated for families who lost.
Invited by the White House to attend then President Barack Obama’s ceremonial signing of the 21st Century Cures Act Kevin Meara had an exchange with the President that concluded with the President saying ” what was your son’s name?” “well then, today I will have KC on my mind!”


COA’s founders Maryann and Kevin Meara meet with then Drug Czar and WH ONDCP Dir Michael Botticelli to discuss families impacted by the opioid epidemic.


The WH Office of National Drug Control Policy requested a meeting with City of Angels at COA’s office in Hamilton, NJ.



Kevin Meara was received at the White House by our current Drug Czar Dr Rahul Gupta to discuss funding possibilities for the smaller non-profits that do much of the work in our communities.