186329 Benefits and challenges of engaging young people in alcohol prevention research and evaluation

Tuesday, October 28, 2008: 1:24 PM

Lina Amin Nasr, MPH , Butte County Department of Behavioral Health, Prevention Unit, Chico, CA
Desiree Bewley , Butte County Department of Behavioral Health, Chico, CA
For the past four years, the Truth on Youth (TOY) youth researchers, a diverse team of youth attending high schools throughout Butte County, California, have partnered with adults from the Butte County Department of Behavioral Health (BCDBH) and the Youth Leadership Institute (YLI) to evaluate alcohol environmental prevention projects in their community. Youth researchers have administered surveys and conducted participant observations, focus groups, and interviews, and have also analyzed their data and presented their findings and recommendations to drive yearly program improvement cycles.

This presentation will focus on the impact of participating in evaluation on the youth researchers, as well as benefits and challenges this youth-adult partnership has had for the BCDBH. Data from pre-post surveys measuring youth researchers' skills, knowledge, and attitudes related to conducting action research will be provided. In addition, youth researchers' experience of five youth development standards of practice (safe environment, opportunities for involvement and connection to community and school, opportunities for leadership and advocacy, opportunities to build skills, and caring and meaningful relationships with adults and other youth), as measured by YLI's Youth Development Survey, will be presented.

Finally, changes to the BCDBH's programs and services that have resulted from the work of the youth researchers will be delineated, and challenges of this work, from the perspective of youth and adults in the BCDBH, will be described.

Learning Objectives:
At the conclusion of this session, participants will be able to: 1)Identify organizational benefits and challenges of partnering with young people on evaluation 2)Learn the benefits of participating in evaluation for young people 3)Identify how youth input may be institutionalized within the work of organizations and county agencies that focus on alcohol prevention

Keywords: Evaluation, Youth

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have an MPH degree that is related to this topic. I am also the lead support for the youth evaluation team at Butte County.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.