Alliance for Combined Action
co·a·li·tion – [ˌkōəˈliSH(ə)n]
coalitions (plural noun)
An alliance for combined action, a group of people or groups who have joined together for a common purpose.
Before diving into the details of the seven strategies and prevention framework, it’s important to understand that the primary focus of the Safe & Drug Free coalition is environmental change.
Tip: Correlate environmental change to the difference between a thermometer and a thermostat.
What does a thermometer do?
Answer: it’s an instrument for measuring and indicating temperature.
What does a thermostat do?
Answer: it’s a device that automatically regulates temperature, or that activates a device when the temperature reaches a certain point.
As a coalition, we assess (measure) the data, but our goal is to be the thermostat of the community by changing (regulating) the environment. Research shows environmental change has the most impact in preventing youth from accessing and abusing harmful substances.
Seven Strategies for Community Change
- 1 – Provide information
- 2 – Enhance skills
- 3 – Provide support
- 4 – Enhance access/reduce barriers
- 5 – Change consequences
- 6 – Change physical design
- 7 – Modify/change policies
1 – Providing Information – Educational presentations, workshops or seminars or other presentations of data (e.g., public announcements, brochures, dissemination, billboards, community meetings, forums, web-based communication).
2 – Enhancing Skills – Workshops, seminars or other activities designed to increase the skills of participants, members and staff needed to achieve population level outcomes (e.g., training, technical assistance, distance learning, strategic planning retreats, curricula development).
3 – Providing Support – Creating opportunities to support people to participate in activities that reduce risk or enhance protection (e.g., providing alternative activities, mentoring, referrals, support groups or clubs).
4 – Enhancing Access/Reducing Barriers– Improving systems and processes to increase the ease, ability and opportunity to utilize those systems and services (e.g., assuring healthcare, childcare, transportation, housing, justice, education, safety, special needs, cultural and language sensitivity).
5 – Changing Consequences (Incentives/Disincentives) – Increasing or decreasing the probability of a specific behavior that reduces risk or enhances protection by altering the consequences for performing that behavior (e.g., increasing public recognition for deserved behavior, individual and business rewards, taxes, citations, fines, revocations/loss of privileges).
6 – Physical Design – Changing the physical design or structure of the environment to reduce risk or enhance protection (e.g., parks, landscapes, signage, lighting, outlet density).
7 – Modifying/Changing Policies – Formal change in written procedures, by-laws, proclamations, rules or laws with written documentation and/or voting procedures (e.g., workplace initiatives, law enforcement procedures and practices, public policy actions, systems change within government, communities and organizations).
- Create and maintain coalition and partnerships
- Assess community needs and resources
- Analyze problems and goals
- Develop a framework and models for change
- Increase participation and membership
- Build leadership
- Enhance cultural competence
- Improve organizational management and development
- Develop strategic and action plans
- Develop interventions
- Advocate for change
- Influence policy development
- Write grant applications for funding
- Evaluate initiatives
- Sustain projects and initiatives