OXON HILL, Md. -- Melania Trump thanked youth anti-drug advocates Thursday for "choosing to step up and be part of the solution" for reducing drug abuse and addiction.
"You are our greatest agents for change," the first lady told hundreds attending the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America's annual youth leadership forum. "Through your voices, you have the power to influence, transform and lead your communities from within.
"You can lead by example every day among your peers, your friends, your classmates and your teammates," she said.
The first lady leads a national campaign called "Be Best" that partly focuses on the opioid crisis, especially babies born dependent on the powerful drugs.
Mrs. Trump spoke in her brief remarks about a former opioid abuse addict who sat beside her on Tuesday night when President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union address. Ashley Evans was treated at an Ohio facility, has been in recovery for more than a year and looks forward to being reunited with her infant daughter next week, the first lady said.
"Recovery is possible," Mrs. Trump said, adding that community programs can make a difference. "These programs are so vital to our nation and within our communities."
The first lady helped hand out youth leadership awards before she went to her final stop Thursday, a briefing at the Office of National Drug Control Policy, which is located near the White House.
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