Teens Invited to Enter Third Annual Operation Prevention Video Challenge as Part of National Opioid Education Initiative

The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the DEA Educational Foundation, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced today the launch of the third annual Operation Prevention Video Challenge – a peer-to-peer platform for communicating messages about the dangers of opioid misuse.

An extension of Discovery Education and the DEA’s Operation Prevention program, the video challenge encourages teens to create a 30-60 second original public service announcement that alerts other students about the dangers of prescription opioid misuse and heroin use. Overall, the challenge aims to inspire teens to research the opioid epidemic, identify its widespread impact on the country and the substances’ harmful effects on the body, and start a social movement that encourages authentic dialogue about this critical issue. The top 10 finalist videos will be uploaded to operationprevention.com for a public vote to determine the People’s Choice winner. Winning PSAs will be featured on-air, across Discovery Education and DEA digital platforms, and on other social media platforms.

Prizes for winning submissions, include:

  • 1st place: $10,000;
  • 2nd place: $5,000;
  • 3rd place: $1,000; and
  • People’s Choice: A VIP trip to Quantico, Virginia, for a tour of DEA training.

“Stopping drug abuse before it starts isn’t just the responsibility of education and prevention programs – it takes all of us, including the next generation of leaders, to make people and communities whole again,” said Sean Fearns, chief of community outreach, DEA. “Peer-to-peer education is uniquely impactful for teens, so we’re excited to continue promoting this video challenge to inspire new advocates for drug-free living.”

Last year’s winning PSA, titled Waiting to Die by Porter Christensen of Saint George, UT, was one of the hundreds of original submissions the challenge received. To view entries from finalists and winners of the previous Operation Prevention Video Challenges, visit: operationprevention.com/competition/video/archives/2018.

“The ‘Operation Prevention Video Challenge’ sparks peer-to-peer conversations, in classrooms, in homes and in neighborhoods nationwide, about the importance of kick-starting life-saving conversations to prevent heroin use and opioid misuse,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Discovery Education. “We are proud to support the DEA in their work to create a social movement that encourages a new era of empowered and educated young people using their voice to stem the tide of the epidemic.”

According to National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), more than 115 people in the United States die from opioid misuse every day. The Operation Prevention Video Challenge is launched at a time when prescription opioid misuse and heroin use have reached epidemic levels in the United States. Operation Prevention is a nationwide program that educates students about the science behind addiction, and its effects on the brain and body. Standards-aligned Operation Prevention interactive resources, available at no-cost, help promote lifesaving discussions in the home and classroom.

“Opioid addiction and substance abuse touches everyone and too often goes unrecognized as families, educators and communities are left to deal with the consequences on their own,” said Rodney Crouse, Guilford County Schools Educator from Trinity, N.C. “The ‘Operation Prevention’ Video Challenge presents a unique opportunity for my colleagues and I to acknowledge the epidemic’s impacts, while encouraging our students to part of the solution.”

The Operation Prevention Video Challenge opens today and will close on March 6, 2019. Public voting for the People’s Choice winner will take place April 11-25, 2019. United States high school students, ages 13 and older, can register and find more information about the challenge here.

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