Duke Energy joins fight against North Carolina’s opioid epidemic with $500,000 in grants

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  • 2 statewide organizations receive grant funds to tackle opioid epidemic through public education, direct service

RALEIGH, N.C. – Duke Energy today announced $500,000 in grant funding to two organizations championing the battle against the opioid epidemic in North Carolina.

The Duke Energy Foundation awarded $100,000 to the More Powerful NC campaign and $400,000 to the North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition (NCHRC).

“Our communities need help, so we’re joining the fight against the opioid crisis,” said Stephen De May, North Carolina president, Duke Energy. “We’re proud to support the critical work of these organizations to expand access to help, and to broaden educational outreach in North Carolina.”

The More Powerful NC campaign was created by the North Carolina Departments of Justice and Health and Human Services, as well as other partners, to raise awareness about the opioid crisis and to encourage North Carolinians to take action in their own communities.

The campaign outlines real, actionable steps for the safe storage, use and disposal of pain medications, as well as resources for finding treatment and recovery support. Duke Energy Foundation funds will be used for public education and outreach.

“The opioid epidemic is ripping through North Carolina and leaving a trail of sick and grieving people in its wake,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “That is why I am so proud to team up with this diverse and passionate group of government and corporate leaders. More Powerful NC is raising awareness of addiction and spurring action in local communities. I want people all over this state to appreciate that together, we are more powerful than this epidemic.”

NCHRC is a comprehensive harm reduction program. The organization engages in grassroots advocacy, resource development, coalition building and direct services for people impacted by drug use. NCHRC also provides resources and support to the law enforcement, public health and provider communities.

“The North Carolina Harm Reduction is proud to partner with Duke Energy Foundation. This funding will make it possible for us to improve access to healthcare and other social resources for directly-impacted people living in rural communities in eastern, central and western North Carolina by supporting our outreach and linkages to care programs,” Shelisa Howard-Martinez, executive director, North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition.

Duke Energy Foundation funding for NCHRC will establish nine new regular outreach sites; expand wraparound services and build capacity by creating a replicable model for community technical assistance. Within 12 months, the grant to NCRHC will reach 2,360 individuals through direct service and 25 communities through technical assistance programs engaging local healthcare providers, government, law enforcement and social services.

More Powerful NC

Led by NC Attorney General Josh Stein and NC Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen to raise awareness around the devastating impact of the opioid crisis in North Carolina, the More Powerful NC campaign is anchored in the message that together, we are more powerful than opioids—and we can all help play a part in ending the epidemic.

North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition

NCHRC works with communities across North Carolina, from the coast to the mountains. Founded in 2004 and incorporated in 2006, NCHRC has grown from an advocacy group to a nationally recognized nonprofit that provides direct services to people impacted by drug use and that supports local communities and stakeholders through technical assistance, resource development and advocacy. More information about NCHRC can be found at www.nchrc.org

Duke Energy Foundation

The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to address the needs of communities where Duke Energy’s customers live and work. The Foundation contributes more than $30 million annually in charitable gifts. More information about the Duke Energy Foundation and its Powerful Communities program can be found at duke-energy.com/foundation.

The Duke Energy Foundation is solely funded by Duke Energy Corporation (NYSE: DUK) shareholder dollars.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S., with approximately 29,000 employees and a generating capacity of 49,500 megawatts. The company is transforming its customers’ experience, modernizing its energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding its natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves.

A Fortune 150 company, Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2019 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list and Forbes’ 2019 “America’s Best Employers” list.

More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center includes news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.


Meredith Archie, Duke Energy
24-Hour: 800.559.3853

Laura Brewer, NC Department of Justice and More Powerful NC
Phone: 919.716.6484

Shelisa Howard-Martinez, NC Harm Reduction Coalition
Phone: 336.543.8050