SNOW HILL – The world’s only inflatable, walk-through brain and lungs exhibit provided local kids with a glimpse of how drugs affect their bodies.
With stops at Stephen Decatur High School and Snow Hill High School last week, the MEGA Brain and MEGA Lungs exhibit showed students how drugs, alcohol, tobacco and vaping affect the brain and lungs.
“It really makes them stop and think,” Superintendent Lou Taylor said.
Last year, the Berlin Drug-Free Coalition used a grant to bring the MEGA Brain exhibit to Stephen Decatur Middle School.
Students enjoyed the unique educational experience and so this year, Worcester Goes Purple and Worcester County Public Schools worked with the Maryland Operational Opioid Command Center to bring the exhibit to more schools. In the past two weeks it has been at Stephen Decatur High School and Snow Hill High School.
The inflatables are meant to provide visitors with an interactive educational experience about the body’s most critical organs. Along with the chance to walk through the brain and lungs, students are engaged with an interactive presentation by working paramedics. The paramedics shared experiences they’d had responding to drug-related incidents and talked about the specific ways drugs damaged organs like the brain and lungs.
“Our youth are exposed to so much in the community, in their homes, on social media,” said Tamara Mills, coordinator of instruction for Worcester County Public Schools. “We believe it is really important to counter much of the misinformation about substance misuse and the dangers of drugs and alcohol that they see and hear from these sources. As teachers, it’s our duty to educate them, hopefully even before they are in a situation where they need to make a difficult decision.”
Mills noted that the MEGA Brain exhibit was also toured by Lt. Brian Washington, the Maryland National Guard Counterdrug Program coordinator, and U.S. Army Colonel William Fox, who is the counterdrug coordinator for the Maryland Counterdrug Program.
“We received very positive feedback about the event, presentations and our community partnerships,” Mills said. “Coordination between the drug-free coalitions, Worcester Goes Purple and Worcester County Public Schools provided our kids and community these events to help provide substance misuse education, to help be proactive around addiction and drugs, rather than being reactive.”