North Cobb Christian first in state to kick off national opioid prevention program

At North Cobb Christian School's football game Friday night, there was a lot of buzz about the fight against opioids. The school is the first in Georgia to kick off the national program called Coaches vs Overdoses, tackling drug overdoses through prevention, education and proper drug disposal.

Four hundred schools in five states are participating in the program in its first year as part of its pilot program.  

DisposeRx kits were given to fans as they walked into the game. It's a way to safely dispose of unused prescription medications at home.

"It's a powder you put in medication to deactivate the medication, and you can safely throw it away in the trash. So nobody can use that medication, nobody can overdose," said Missy Owen with the Davis Direction Foundation.

Owen says the opioid crisis is fueled by prescription drug misuse.

Coaches vs Overdoses is geared to high school athletes for a reason.

"Sometimes their first exposure to an opioid or pain medication is when they're playing sports. That seems to be the source of a lot of teen addiction," said Ann Hamlin with DisposeRx

North Cobb Christian Assistant Athletic Director Jimmy Keane says he's all for tackling opioid abuse.

"It doesn't matter who you are or where you come from, these things are real, and I think helping our kids understand that whether they deal with it today or down the road, this is what we want to do," said Keane.

Students and their families also received a "prevention playbook". It is filled with information about opioid misuse, counterfeit pills, and the dangers of fentanyl. It's also a good conversation starter between parents and coaches and the kids.

Owen says the goal is to take this program statewide.