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A greenhouse run by youths in foster care takes root amid the opioid crisis

The Stepping Stones Greenhouse will serve youths in foster care in Huntington, West Virginia. Photo: Stephen Ritz

Tucked into the mountains of Appalachia, banked on the Ohio River, Huntington, West Virginia, is a city known for coal, oil, steel, and, most recently, the opioid crisis. The state has the highest rate of opioid overdose deaths in the nation.

In 2017, there were 833 drug overdose deaths involving opioids in the state — double the rate in 2010, and three times higher than the national rate. West Virginia also has the highest rate of babies born drug-dependent. Many children become orphaned, landing in foster care, staring down futures without a way out of the cycle of despair. …


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