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Science and Service

Substance Abuse Prevention Programs

2009 Winners

Center for Alcohol and other Drug Abuse Prevention, University of Massachusetts Amherst
BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students) Program
(413) 577-5181 

As part of a strategic plan to build an effective, comprehensive substance abuse prevention program, the University of Massachusetts Amherst established the Center for Alcohol and other Drug Abuse Prevention (CADAP).  CADAP and the Campus and Community Coalition to Reduce High Risk Drinking (CCC) reviewed campus, community-wide and program-specific data and created a broad plan to enhance campus policies and municipal bylaws, and increase enforcement. In 2006, the campus replaced its existing mandated alcohol education workshop with BASICS. Since then, over 3,500 students have completed the two-session BASICS intervention.

BASICS, a face-to-face intervention for individuals with mild to moderate alcohol problems, combines cognitive-behavioral skills training, norms clarification and motivational interviewing. Students complete an online assessment of drinking and drugging behaviors, family risk, perceived norms, and readiness to change. This data generates a personalized feedback report which is reviewed with a prevention specialist.

Results of our study employing a quasi-experimental design indicated that implementing BASICS within a campus judicial program was effective in reducing drinking and consequences among program participants. At six months post-intervention, BASICS participants showed significant reductions in high-risk drinking rates (typical number of drinks when partying, peak number of drinks when partying, typical BAC, peak BAC, and frequent binge drinking). In 2009, we enhanced our evaluation design by adding follow-up assessments at 3, 6, and 12 months post-intervention. In addition, we are testing the effectiveness of an electronically-delivered feedback intervention in further reducing high-risk drinking, negative consequences and recidivism.  

Community Development & Substance Abuse Center/Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
MIT Screening and Brief Intervention Systemic Model

The MIT Screening and Brief Intervention Systemic Model (MIT-SBI) applies a NIAAA Tier I strategy (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students-BASICS; Dimeff,  Baer, Kivlahan, &  Marlatt, 1999) to multiple high risk populations in a fluid, integrated manner. This Systemic model includes: (1) 1st year students, (2) student athletes, (3) students violating alcohol policies, and (4) students presenting at health services with alcohol related injury or overdose.  Research has shown the MIT-SBI Systemic model effective, providing significant reductions in alcohol use, and associated negative consequences. The program provides early screening to 85% of 1st year students and 95% of student athletes—nearly 50% of the undergraduate population is screened each year.

Results demonstrate the efficacy of the one-on-one individual BASICS intervention, as well as the significant impact and potential of online feedback as a mechanism for providing significant reductions in high risk drinking behaviors to target high risk groups as well as at the population level.

Data collected over six years was analyzed across three group conditions:  the control group (no feedback, no interview), online feedback-only (comparison) group, and feedback with interview (participant) groups. Those in the participant group reported experiencing (1) lower rates of excessive alcohol consumption, (2) fewer consequences as a result of consumption, as well as (3) reports of engaging in fewer high risk behaviors while increasing the use of protective behavior.

The DeKalb County Partnership for a Safe, Active and Family Environment (DCP/SAFE)
Social Norms Marketing Project
815-756-4875  (note that a new website will be rolled out in November.)  

The DeKalb County Partnership for a Safe, Active & Family Environment  is a community coalition promoting community based prevention, wellness and healthy lifestyles for youth, adults and the community as a whole. The Partnership is divided into different Action Groups that have different focuses on community topics.  Additionally the following goals include: Substance Abuse Free Environments, Community Activities, Networking and Collaboration, Inter-organizational Cooperation.

DCP/SAFE’s Social Norms Marketing Project is based on a model of identifying and reinforcing existing protective norms concerning alcohol, tobacco and other drugs (ATOD) issues and correcting misinterpretations about the extent of ATOD use and levels of existing protective behaviors.  The main method of this approach is social marketing, primarily through media and other appropriate methods.  The major components of the project target youth, family, and community members.  Most of the expected outcomes have focused on increasing pro-social, health positive behaviors, along with increasing more accurate perceptions of ATOD use. 

DCP/SAFE has effectively demonstrated positive project outcomes during their 10 years of implementation and intervention. Since baseline data taken in 1999, outcomes have been measured annually with some of the following highlights: 21.1% reduction in alcohol use by high school students; 43% increase in the number of students who believe most students do not drink; 33.3% increase in the number of students who believe most students do not smoke; 51.3% increase in the number of teachers who believe most students do not drink; 17.5% increase in the number of students who believe their peers feel it is wrong to drink; and 6.5% increase in the number of students who get accurate alcohol information from parents.

Pima Prevention Partnership
Strengthening Families Program

Pima Prevention Partnership (PPP) is an 18-year-old, non-profit community-based organization whose mission is to build partnerships with young people, families & communities to improve their quality of life.  PPP works with communities to address locally-identified needs, by initiating and sustaining evidence-based strategies and programs that serve vulnerable populations and educate businesses and policymakers. With service sites in Arizona and the Pacific Jurisdictions, PPP’s programs include: Youth and Family Services; Clinical Services; a Charter High School and Middle School; Pima County Teen Court; and Program Evaluation and Technical Assistance services that are provided in Arizona, the Nation and the Pacific Jurisdictions. The PPP is an Arizona state-licensed addiction treatment and prevention provider and its high school is accredited by the North Central Association.

In 2000, PPP institutionalized the Strengthening Families Program for Parents and their Teens, 10-14-years-old (SFP 10-14) programwithin its comprehensive youth and family services continuum and has since served more than 625 families in multiple community and school settings.  PPP conducts SFP 10-14 using eight weekly three-hour sessions (24 hours) and sustains a high completion percentage (87%) by using well-trained facilitators, adhering to the model’s core components, and developing trusting relationships with participants. 

Program data collected over the past five years indicate the effectiveness the SFP 10-14 program has achieved with SFP 10-14 participants: findings show participants improved family interpersonal skills, family togetherness, and communication skills. Qualitative data from focus groups indicate that, overall, parents: “improved their relationship with their child,” “learned patience skills,” and “received lots of useful information.” Program outcomes show participation in the SFP 10-14 program has maintained or increased the protective factors that are essential to successful family relationships and reduced substance abuse among adolescents. 

University of Wisconsin-Extension, Family Living Programs
Strengthening Families Program

University of Wisconsin-Extension, Family Living Programs responds to community needs with research-based education and partnerships that support Wisconsin families. Teams of county educators and state specialists identify outreach efforts.  Since 2000, Family Living Programs has provided statewide leadership to bring evidence-based programs to Wisconsin’s families.

Initially, the Strengthening Families Program for Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) was piloted with Hmong families who partnered with UW-Extension to select an evidence-based program aimed at preventing alcohol/substance use among their youth and enhancing family functioning.  SFP 10-14 was selected on its evidence of effectiveness and the commitment of the program developers to partner in making cultural adaptations.  Since this successful pilot, Family Living Programs has provided leadership to build statewide capacity for SFP 10-14.  A team of official trainers was established, and has provided 21 facilitator trainings resulting in more than 400 certified SFP 10-14 facilitators.  To ensure program fidelity, trainers emphasize the core components of SFP 10-14, and 86 UW-Extension certified facilitators provide on-site checks during local implementation.

Compiled statewide evaluation results reveal that as a result of the program 98% of parents believe their parent-child relationship has improved and 99% believe that they are more likely to deal with problems with their child in a calm manner. Most parents also report being more likely to monitor their children and being better able to talk with their child about rules. Among youth, over 80% report they better understand family rules about drinking and drugs, and 73% understand the consequences if a rule is broken. Nine of ten youth agree they now know ways to resist peer pressure to do things that will get them into trouble.

Last Update: 9/21/2009