Take the Best from Both Cultures: An Aboriginal Model for Substance Use Prevention and Intervention
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First published in the Aboriginal & Islander Health Worker Journal, May/June 2010, Volume 34, Number 3
Objective: To identify the key components of an Aboriginal model for alcohol (and other drug) harm prevention and intervention. Method: Part of a wider, two-year, Aboriginal-initiated study into the context and Indigenous perceptions of Aboriginal alcohol use and intervention, using a descriptive, grounded theory, participatory action study design. A demographically comprehensive sample of 170 Aboriginal people participated in qualitative, semi-structured interviews within three types of participant groups: the "model planning group" progressively distilling all participants' proposals into the intervention model described here. Results: The model proposes a remotely located, multi-component, youth and family-focused residential Bush College program with integral "cultural", vocational/life skills and followup support components. The program would be staffed by a network of permanent on-site Aboriginal staff, language group elders in residence for "cultural teaching" components, and visiting accredited vocational trainers. Family and peer co-residence would be encouraged. Detailed operational guidelines include staff selection criteria, assessment procedures, program content and operation, rules, follow-up, management, budget, evaluation (discussed in a separate paper), and local agency support. Core program components are presented, with further details available via weblink.Conclusions and implications: Among the study's remote area Aboriginal participants, recommendations for substance misuse prevention and intervention differ markedly from options generally available to them. In contrast with the substance use symptom-focus of most programs, participants detail instead a cause focused approach addressing issues of identity, economic and daily-life opportunity, and a sense of hope for the future. These findings have relevance for understandings of cultural appropriateness, Aboriginal-perceived social determinants and the design of culturally meaningful substance misuse prevention and intervention strategies.
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Identity, opportunity and hope :an Aboriginal model for alcohol (and other drug) harm prevention and interventionNichols, Fiona Troup (2002)The fieldwork for this study was conducted in the West Kimberley region of Western Australia between 1997 and 1999. Qualitative and quantitative information provided by 170 Aboriginal participants enabled an exploration ...
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