The 3rd annual Picnic for Progress is set for Saturday at Champion Park.

"We have had an event over the past three years to raise awareness surrounding prescription drug abuse and misuse, as well as the lifesaving intervention drug, Naloxone," said PreventionWorkz's Prevention Services Director and PFS Coordinator Dena Patterson-Kemp. "Each year, the Austin Box '12' Foundation has been an integral part of these efforts."

This year's Picnic for Progress will be from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the park, 700 N. 10th.

This year's event includes a prescription drug take-back event operated by the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, free food, games and prizes. It is sponsored by Austin Box Foundation, Garfield County Drug and Alcohol Coalition and PreventionWorks, Inc.

Patterson said 20 nonprofits and social agencies will be on hand for Saturday's event.

"We're going to have lots of free food and fun," she said.

During Tuesday's Enid City Commission meeting, Mayor Bill Shewey declared May 20 as "Austin Box '12' Prescription Drug Abuse and Misuse Awareness Day." The Box family attended the presentation of the proclamation.

"They have worked tirelessly raising awareness surrounding the epidemic of opioid overdoses throughout Oklahoma," Patterson-Kemp said of the Boxes. "It is a privilege and an honor to have the Box family in our community, knowing they are leading the way in awareness and education surrounding prescription drug abuse and misuse prevention.

"The Box family has taken aim at prescription drug abuse and misuse prevention initiatives to ensure their family's dark hour is another family's silver lining."

The use and abuse of prescription opioids continues to be a challenging and costly crisis for the U.S., according to a report from Castlight Health.

Enid is listed as the No. 3 city on its top 25 list based on prescriptions abused, with a 54.7 percent rate. Oklahoma City ranks 12th with 46.8 percent. For opioid abuse rates, Castlight Health ranks Enid as the No. 4 city in its top 25 cities. Oklahoma City ranks 16th on the list.

According to Castlight:

• Nearly 2 million Americans are abusing prescription opioids.

• 16,000 people die every year from prescription opioid overdoses.

• Sales of opioid prescriptions in the U.S. nearly quadrupled from 1999 to 2010.

• 259 million opioid prescriptions were written in 2012, enough for every American adult to have their own bottle of pills.

• Opioid abuse costs the U.S. economy nearly $56 billion.

"We want people to become aware of prescription drug abuse in our area," Patterson-Kemp said.

React to this story:


Recommended for you