The Kansas Prevention Collaborative (KPC) celebrated Kansas Day 2020 by sponsoring its 2nd Annual Prevention Advocacy Day at the State Capitol in Topeka.


Despite the early snowfall, on Wednesday, January 29th , several organizations and coalitions met with legislators to relay a shared message of “Prevention for a Stronger Kansas”. On this day, it didn’t matter whether their individual missions were suicide prevention, problem gambling, substance misuse, underage drinking, tobacco cessation or other prevention efforts. They worked together to encourage legislators to look through a prevention lens as they work for the people and support efforts that impact all prevention missions.

During the event, Stephanie Rhinehart, the Prevention Program Manager with KDADS, greeted attendees. “There isn’t a more appropriate day than Kansas Day for us to be here because of the work we do every day in communities all across Kansas”. Attendees received “Change Through Action” advocacy education from Jordan Feuerborn, the Kansas Government Relations Director for the American Cancer Society. Representative Kathy Wolfe-Moore of Kansas District 36 welcomed attendees and shared information about the important legislation facing Kansas during this session.

Patricia Houston of the Wichita State University Community Engagement Institute’s Prevention Initiatives delivered a motivating message about the shared theme of the day, “Prevention for a Stronger Kansas”, and the significance of what they were asking legislators to support. The points of their shared ask were to support early prevention education and programs; support elevating awareness to reduce stigmas for seeking help; support easier access to mental health services and addiction treatment; and support creating and maintaining effective prevention coalitions and partnerships across the state of Kansas.

The Advocacy Day attendees were able to keep appointments with roughly 44 legislators and provide printed flyers with youth survey data and the “Prevention for a Stronger Kansas” shared message to approximately 65 additional legislators by dropping them at their offices. Other activities for the day included a social media hour, historical tour of the capitol, and lunch at the Celtic Fox.

The Kansas Prevention Collaborative is a strategic partnership of organizations designed to support coalitions, taskforces, and other organizations in their prevention efforts through capacity development, trainings, awareness efforts, and community engagement. The WSU Community Engagement Institute's Prevention Initiatives is a partner of the collaborative responsible for information dissemination, meeting facilitation, conference planning, prevention trainings, and statewide awareness promotion. The KPC is funded by the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS).