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        DELTA

ATOD Prevention Planning Tutorial - Step 1

Step 1: Defining the Problem

To define the problem, you should identify the ATOD-related factors that affect youth in your community. These factors include past 30-day and lifetime ATOD use by youth, adolescent sexual behavior, violent and nonviolent crime, and antisocial behavior. Information provided in this tutorial program allows you to examine ATOD use by youth in the middle- and high-school age groups within your locality or Health Planning Region (HPR) and compare it to ATOD use by all Virginia youth.

It is important to use multiple strategies to define the problem at a community level. For example, to understand and explain a difference between ATOD use by middle- and high-school youth, you must examine information from archival indicators, such as high school dropout rates. In this case, you might determine that lower prevalence rates for high school youth are a result of the survey methodology, because the survey was limited to youth attending public schools in Virginia. Interviews with key community youth leaders may help you to further understand ATOD use by youth in the middle- and high-school age groups.

Sample Charts*

Past 30-Day ATOD Use
High school past 30 day A T O D use

Lifetime ATOD Use
High School Lifetime A T O D use

Note that past 30-day ATOD use is a more valid indicator of a problem than lifetime ATOD use*.

As you examine your locality/HPR information, you are attempting to answer the question, "What is the youth ATOD use problem in my community?" To answer this question, you may need to ask several others:

  • For which problem are the rates in my community/HPR above the state average for youth in the middle/high school age group (where information is available by age group)?

  • For which problem are the rates in my community/HPR below the state average for youth in the middle/high school age group (where information is available by age group)?

  • Are there disparities between information obtained from the Community Youth Survey and the Social Indicator Study? If so, which is a more valid measure? (For example, if youth report frequent ATOD use in the last 30 days, but Social Indicator Study information does not show this as an outcome for your community, the Community Youth Survey information might be the more valid indicator.)

  • Can interviews with key community youth leaders, or other community stakeholders, assist me in understanding the ATOD-related problems in my community? Who are the key community youth leaders and other stakeholders? How can I obtain information from these sources? How would this information help me define the youth ATOD use problem in my community?

To review your locality or HPR problem information from the Social Indicator Study, select your locality or HPR of interest using the pull-down menu below. Then, return here to Step 1.

Social Indicators Outcomes:

Social Indicators Outcomes by HPR:

To review your HPR prevalence information from the Community Youth Survey, select your locality of interest using the pull-down menu below. Then, return here to Step 1.

Community Youth Survey Outcomes by Region:

Based on your examination of the information from the Social Indicator Study and the Community Youth Survey, what is the extent of the youth ATOD use problem in your community? Write down this information, and move on to Step 2: Identifying Risk and Protective Factors.

To return to the top of the tutorial home page, click here.


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