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The Discovery Center's STEM and Opioid Education for All program is designed to address the drug epidemic.
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The Discovery Center's STEM and Opioid Education for All program is designed to address the drug epidemic.

State allocates $250K for Discovery Center program

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The state's fiscal 2022 budget earmarked $250,000 for a Discovery Center of Springfield Inc. program designed to curb the opioid epidemic.

The funding extends the Springfield organization's STEM and Opioid Education for All program, according to a news release. The initiative teaches students the brain science behind opioids, addiction and pharmacology, and officials reported a 21% increase in related knowledge during the first year of the program.

Discovery Center Executive Director Rob Blevins thanked Reps. Curtis Trent and Alex Riley, both of Springfield, for working in Jefferson City to include funding in the budget for the opioid education program.

“This funding guarantees that we will see more futures — more proms, more graduations, more weddings, more of life’s precious moments lived out,” Blevins said in the release. “Rep. Riley and Rep. Trent are literally life savers, and the kids they are saving won’t even know that they should thank them for working so hard this session, but we know, and you now know that they are real life heroes fighting for kids in Springfield and in the great state of Missouri.”

The opioid education program was built in partnership with CoxHealth, Mercy Springfield Communities, Burrell Behavioral Health, Jordan Valley Community Health Center and Walmart Pharmacy. It's also supported by the Springfield-Greene County Health Department.

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