Defining critical steps for successful community prevention

Grant monitoring, or grant management, can help to define the grant expectations as well as maintaining these expectations. These services can be beneficial and at times, imperative, to prevention programs.

The first critical step for successful community prevention is to build a system to monitor your action plan. Each activity, program, or initiative represents an environmental strategy that can be operationalized and measured over time to demonstrate change. Communities with the best long-term outcomes tend to measure and monitor the capacity and infrastructure changes they build at the community level. Simultaneously, they focus their efforts to reduce youth substance use and substance abuse-related problems that often include co-occurring mental health concerns. These two actions authentically change their community environment.

A second important observation of successful communities is the utilization of data assessments to determine prevention strategies. A vital method of this is to know what underlying factors predict or lead to substance misuse. These communities have found that the underlying factors for one substance may differ from others even in the same community. Below is an example of the top influences for high school youth in one community for alcohol and vaping or ENDS. Due to accurate data assessment, this community is designing specific and effective prevention strategies for each substance in their grant because they now are aware of the differences between what influences 30 day use the most for each substance. These are all statistically significant predictors of past 30 day use however the rankings are in order of the magnitude of influence for each substance.

Top Influences for Past 30-Day Alcohol Use

1. Perception of friends past 30-day alcohol use

2. “There is nothing wrong with people under 21 drinking alcohol”

3. Perception of most students past 30-day alcohol use

4. Clear rules at home about using alcohol or drugs

5. Parental disapproval

6. Perception of risk

7. Lower vs. Upperclassmen

Top Influences for Past 30-Day Vaping

1. Confidence in their ability to resist when hanging out with friends

2. Presence of others who vape

3. “There is no harm in using a vape device or e-cigarette”

4. Disapproval of peer use

5. Perception of friends past 30-day vape device use

6. Perception of most students past 30-day vape device use

7. Perception of typical students’ perception of harm

Grant monitoring in conjunction with data assessments provides your program with the best outcome and successful results. Can your program benefit from grant monitoring or data assessments? If so, Contact Us today!

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