208750 Using focus groups to refine an African American church-based HIV intervention

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 8:55 AM

Jannette Berkley-Patton, PhD , Department of Psychology, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
Carole Bowe-Thompson, BS , Psychology Department -- Heartland Health Network, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
Andrea D. Bradley-Ewing, MPA, MA , Department of Psychology, University of Missouri- Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
David Martinez, BA , Department of Psychology, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
The Black church has been and continues to be an influential institution in the African American community. Yet, the Black church has virtually been an untapped setting for HIV education and prevention interventions. Taking It to the Pews (TIPS) is an initiative to promote HIV education and prevention using religiously-tailored tool kit materials with 12 African American churches. To explore how best to refine and develop new TIPS tool kit materials and to understand challenges in facilitating church-based HIV interventions, four focus groups were held with 26 church leaders from the TIPS initiative. Overall, focus group participants commented on how easy it was to use the tool kit materials within their normal church activities and how their members were very receptive to receiving HIV information in the church. Participants provided suggestions on how to further enhance the TIPS initiative, including having more interactive educational games, developing more tailored brochures and activities for youth and men, and pairing up more experienced TIPS churches with churches that were new to the project. Participants commented that HIV stigma, the need for more HIV training for church staff and volunteers, and topics on sex communication and premarital sex were barriers to churches' participation in HIV education and prevention programs. We will discuss how focus group findings were used to further develop and refine the TIPS initiative along with how the findings have guided the development of Taking It to the Pews -Youth, a new HIV initiative developed specifically for youth in African American churches.

Learning Objectives:
Discuss African American faith leaders' opinions about facilitators and barriers to implementing HIV education and prevention interventions in church settings

Keywords: African American, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an NIH-funded researcher conducting HIV prevention and screening interventions with African American churches.
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.