The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) provides some guidelines for parents, educators and community leaders to help them in their planning, selection and delivery of community-level drug-abuse prevention programs. Based on the results gleaned from long-term research studies on effective prevention programs and their common elements, as well as on origins of drug abuse-related behaviors, the results of the prevention research were developed to help in the prevention of drug abuse.
The NIDA data outlines that drug prevention programs are usually geared for use in a particular setting, such as school, home or in the community. Additionally, prevention programs are geared towards a particular audience, such as those individuals who are at greater risk; those already involved with drugs; or for the general population at large.
The NIDA prevention research results show that early intervention is capable of preventing “many adolescent risk behaviors”, which include drug use and abuse.
The research study compilation isolated a number of recommended principles to be used as guidelines in drug prevention; and some very interesting and applicable research findings which could be implemented in drug prevention measures.
The following is a brief overview of some principles highlighted in those findings—the lessons learned.
It was found that prevention programs can or should:
- Enhance protective factors and reduce or reverse risk factors
- Address all forms of drug abuse–alone or in combination.
- Address the type of drug abuse problem occurring in the local community.
- Be tailored to address risks specific to audience population or characteristics (age, gender, and ethnicity) to improve effectiveness of the program.
- Enhance family bonding and relationships for family-based prevention programs with tools such as parenting skills; family policies on substance abuse; and drug education and information training.
- Potentially be designed for early intervention to minimize risk factors for drug abuse.
- Target improving academic and social-skills learning for elementary school children to address drug-abuse risk factors.
- For middle, junior high and high school students, increase social and academic competence skills.
- Combine two or more effective programs–potentially more effective than a single program by itself.
- Include teacher training on good classroom-management practices.
The research also found that drug prevention programs were most effective when they employed interactive techniques that allowed for active involvement in learning about drug abuse.
Drug Prevention Education
The Narconon Arrowhead drug rehabilitation and education center in Oklahoma has long delivered drug prevention education to children and youth in schools, and in local community settings.
Specially trained Drug Prevention Specialists deliver an interactive and age-appropriate presentation which actively involves the audience, and provides them with useful, fact-based information on drugs and alcohol.
More on the effectiveness of the Narconon Drug Education Curriculum details that its “prevention training materials have emphasized correct communication of information”, as well as “interaction with the communicator”, definitely in alignment with principles identified and outlined by NIDA.
A recent PR Web article, Narconon Arrowhead Takes Part In Red Ribbon Week 2014, further details the drug rehab and education center’s support and participation in the field of drug preventions education; as well as being in alignment and support of other leading organizations at the forefront of the drug prevention field.
Detailed in the article are a number of Narconon Arrowhead online drug education resources available to the public during the national observance of Red Ribbon Week, as well as throughout the remainder of the year. Included is a free download of The Life Cycle and Mechhanics of Addiction by Executive Director of the center, Gary W. Smith; giving great insight on how and why an individual begins using drugs or alcohol—and how and why some become addicted.
Anyone is welcome to contact Narconon Arrowhead for additional information on drug prevention education and materials.