Over 65 preventionists gathered at the Missouri State Capitol for the 6th Annual Prevention Day last week. Each year the Missouri Substance Use Prevention Network and ACT Missouri provide an opportunity for preventionists across Missouri to network with peers in prevention, share ideas, and showcase community successes at the Capitol.
This year Representative Holly Rehder shared her prevention story, as well as tips on how to talk to legislators. Tyler, a youth from the 417Squad in Springfield, MO, also shared why it is important for youth to be involved in advocacy. Preventionists then visited with their representatives and senators throughout the morning, sharing facts about substance use and misuse, as well as the accomplishments in their communities. Many attendees were also able to view the legislative process by attending committee hearings that covered prevention topics!
This year members also shared Missouri Prevention Stories. Over past years, the Missouri Prevention Network has done a wonderful job of showing the data that prevention in Missouri works. This year, ACT Missouri took the opportunity to tell prevention stories from around the state. These stories originate from the people that are working with our youth daily. This is just a small sampling of the prevention work that is happening in Missouri, but they are stories that need to be told!
The Youth Ambassadors hosted a breakfast in the morning, and shared information about how they are promoting prevention and educating peers in their communities. Later they met with Representative Holly Rehder, who spoke to them about advocacy, and congratulated them on the important work they are doing in their communities. Representative Mike Kelley took all the youth who attended on a tour of the Capitol; showing them the House Chambers, the Whispering Gallery, and up to the dome!