This study addresses two limitations in the literature on family-centered intervention programs for adolescents: ruling out nonspecific factors that may explain program effects and engaging parents into prevention programs. The Rural African American Families Health project is a randomized, attention-controlled trial evaluating the efficacy of the Strong African American Families-Teen (SAAF-T) program, a family-centered risk-reduction intervention for rural African American adolescents. Rural African American families (n = 502) with a 10th-grade student were assigned randomly to receive SAAF-T or a similarly structured, family-centered program that focused on health and nutrition. Families participated in audio computer-assisted self-interviews at baseline and 6-month follow-up. Program implementation procedures yielded a design with equivalent doses, five sessions of family-centered intervention programming for families in each condition. Of eligible families screened for participation, 76% attended four or five sessions of the program. Consistent with our primary hypotheses, SAAF-T youth, compared to attention-control youth, demonstrated higher levels of protective family management skills, a finding that cannot be attributed to nonspecific factors such as aggregating families in a structured, interactive setting.
- Attention control
- Family-centered intervention
- Program trial
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health