206434 Systems Reform and Adolescent AOD: Reclaiming Futures and the Juvenile Justice System

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 9:06 AM

Daniel M. Merrigan, EdD, MPH , Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA
Laura Nissen, PhD, MSW , Graduate School of Social Work, Portland State University, Portland, OR
Leadership has long been regarded as a cornerstone of any community or organizational change. However, leadership practice frameworks and the systematic reform of the multiple services and systems that serve children and families often fall short. This presentation presents a new approach to collaborative, multi-sector and trans-disciplinary leadership and utilizes Reclaiming Futures (RF) as a successful case example. RF is a national initiative of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focusing on the creation of integrated, seamless and community-driven systems of care that seek to improve outcomes for drug-involved youth in the juvenile justice system. A basic premise is that development of systems to interrupt the destructive cycle of drugs and delinquency can only be attained through the systematic cultivation of shared strategic leadership. The first phase of Reclaiming Futures (200207) was a ten-site demonstration effort that relied on organizational change and system reform to improve substance abuse interventions for youthful offenders. A previously reported evaluation demonstrated that several quality indicators improved during the course of the initiative and as a promising approach it has spread to twenty-three communities. This presentation describes the assumptions and underpinnings of this demonstrated approach to community-based leadership and clarifies the relationship between leadership and trans-system innovation and change. It includes a discussion of lessons learned in Reclaiming Futures, indicators of successful systems change and recommendations for others who consider employing broad-based community leadership to effect system-wide innovation.

Learning Objectives:
Participants will describe several successful apporaches that enhance trans-sector and cross-disciplinary community collaboration. Participants will identify at least six indicators that demonstrate collaborative leadership that leads to successful systems change. Participant will describe the components of a successful implementation plan.

Keywords: Adolescents, System Involvement

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Associate Professor, Social and Behavioral Sciences
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.