Community Based Prevention
We use the information from research and policy studies to develop effective prevention strategies and community tools for the reduction of alcohol, tobacco and other drug problems. We carry out projects that implement and evaluate these prevention approaches and we carry out translational research to learn how these approaches can best be implemented in communities. We also disseminate these strategies and tools to the public in order to promote healthy communities more broadly.
Some examples of our work in implementation and evaluation of community based prevention strategies:
Development and evaluation of policies to prevent underage and young adult drinking
Drinking among youth and young adults is a serious health and safety issue. Research provides insight and tools for communities to reduce illegal and risky drinking. PRC projects have included working with communities to identify and implement effective enforcement strategies to prevent sales to minors. Projects have worked with colleges and universities and their surrounding communities to identify places where dangerous student drinking occurs and to reduce this drinking.
Development and evaluation of strategies to prevent drinking and driving
Considerable progress has been made in recent decades to reduce impaired driving deaths and injuries. PRC has carried out important work on how drinking and driving laws can be enforced and how this risky behavior can be deterred. PRC has also helped to develop promising strategies to reduce risky alcohol consumption through regulation of the sale and service of alcohol, thus making it less likely that potential drivers will drink enough to be impaired.
Development and evaluation of community interventions to reduce substance use
Community policies can be effective in reducing illicit drug use. PRC has worked with communities to understand and prevent drug use. For example, a PRC project developed strategies for reducing inhalant abuse in rural communities.
Research on community adoption of evidence-based prevention strategies
A new project focuses on California cities to reduce underage and young adult drinking using evidence based strategies. The project provides a planning process to identify effective strategies as well as local expertise to implement the strategies efficiently within the individual community context.
Some examples of our efforts to disseminate effective and promising community-based prevention strategies:
Community outreach website and newsletter
PRC provides information and practical guidance to state and community agencies and organizations, policy makers, and members of the general public who are interested in combating alcohol and other drug abuse and misuse. We disseminate materials that are based on the scientific research and analysis conducted at the Center. Through our ResourceLink website, bimonthly newsletter , and other dissemination efforts, audiences can learn more about research findings that can provide guidance for creating healthier community environments. Audiences can find information about current and recently completed Center projects, access useful publications authored by PRC, and review an extensive library of prevention resources.
Working directly with communities to provide information and resources
In order to provide direct help to communities, PRC staff work with agencies and organizations in select California communities to disseminate information and tailor that information to local needs. They obtain feedback from audiences about the kinds of information that are most needed and most useful and adapt resources to match audience needs.
By working directly with communities, PRC researchers and dissemination staff can increase the probability that guidance will get to the audience most likely to be able to use it and that it will be adopted into policy and practice.
Planned efforts include the development of online tools to aid communities in selecting, planning, and implementing effective strategies to reduce underage and high risk drinking among youth and young adults.