Preventure reduces adolescent drug and alcohol use in schools 30-80%

Preventure drug prevention program.

Preventure Manual. This manual is for students to keep and is for Sensation Seeking

Preventure is an evidence-based prevention intervention included in the first-ever US Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs, and Health.

The intervention is associated with 30-80% reductions in alcohol and drug use in adolescents in schools at 3-year follow-up. It is one of the most effective prevention programs with evidence-based results from Canada, UK, Australia, and other countries.

In partnership with VCU Institute of Drug & Alcohol Studies, we have re-submitted a grant to NIH. That was submitted November 6. While we wait for results of that grant, we have chosen one school to pilot this program and we will announce that later once we have educated school personnel and parents.

Program Goal

To delay onset and reduce rates of adolescent alcohol and drug use and associated mental health problems and risk behaviors associated with certain personality traits.

Ultimately, we want to teach kids with particular traits the coping skills they will use their entire lives. When this program has been implemented, an overall school performance has improved.

How does it work?

The intervention focuses on teaching at-risk teens the life skills to manage one of the four personality traits that put them at risk for addiction: sensation seeking, impulsiveness, anxiety sensitivity, and hopelessness.

  1. A 24-question assessment is given to identify high risk students. About 45% qualify
  2. Two 90-minute coping skills workshops are offered to these students. Two workshops for each trait
  3. The workshops teach students techniques to address their most troublesome trait and encourages them to use these tools
  4. Each student is provided a skills manual for their high risk trait, which they can keep (Picture above)
  5. Each school participating in the project is offered training workshops which will allow them to continue to provide the intervention to future students in their schools
  6. Professor Jasmin Vassileva PhD from VCU Institute of Drug & Alcohol Studies (IDAS) and Beacon Tree Foundation, are spearheading the effort to bring this program to Virginia. NIH reviewed a grant submitted in February 2017 and invited VCU to resubmit with changes November 6, 2017
  7. Beacon Tree, in parternship w/ VCU IDAS, will pilot one local school in 2018
  8. The intervention is currently being done at one school in the US– Georgetown in Hanover county. These school counselors got an ABC grant after hearing about it at a December 2016 public seminar hosted by VCU IDAS and Beacon Tree.

The coping skills taught will offer kids the skills they need to manage relationships and curb high risk behaviors associated with those personality traits such as drinking and doing drugs, ending up in jail, dropping out or failing in school, dying by accident or by suicide.