HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — AT&T has announced that Huntington will be the first community in West Virginia to receive support from its Believe Appalachia initiative, a collaborative effort to combat the opioid epidemic.

Officials from the company and city stood together Thursday in the Fairfield neighborhood of Huntington to announce the partnership that will assist to first responders and the community.

According to a release from the City of Huntington, AT&T will contribute $24,000 to the city to demolish three vacant structures and another $20,000 to help build a wellness center at the Huntington Police Department that will be used by police officers and firefighters.

AT&T employees will also volunteer over the next several months as a way of thanking Huntington’s first responders for their commitment to keeping the community safe, AT&T said.

The efforts in the community began on Thursday with AT&T employees painting Huntington Fire Department Station No. 10 on Washington Boulevard.

Steve Williams

“Our first responders are the only ones who run directly toward danger when the rest of us are running away from it,” Huntington Mayor Steve Williams said in a release.

“I commend AT&T for recognizing their bravery and, through their generous contributions, they are taking care of the first responders who take care of us every day.”

Andy Feeney, AT&T’s West Virginia state president, and Williams joined other community leaders in dropping an excavator bucket on the vacant structure to kick off demolition work.

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