Document Type Doctoral Thesis Author Brandt, Catharina Johanna URN etd-07252005-145509 Document Title The development of a substance abuse prevention programme for early adolescents in Kwazulu Natal Degree DPhil (Social Work) Department Social Work Supervisor
Advisor Name Title Dr C S L Delport Keywords
- Substance abuse adolescents Kwazulu-Natal
- Drug abuse adolescents Kwazulu-Natal
Date 2002-10-09 Availability unrestricted AbstractIn this investigation an attempt was firstly made to define, describe and explicate the phenomenon of substance abuse among the youth, providing a basis for understanding the multidimensional nature of adolescent substance abuse, in terms of its etiology and consequences. Secondly, the development, risk and consequences of adolescent substance use and abuse were investigated after which different components of substance abuse prevention among adolescents was studied. Hereafter, the researcher presented a self-developed substance abuse prevention programme for early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal (i.e. Project Skills Development) followed by all the empirical research findings, a general summary, conclusions and recommendations.
Two research questions as well as a hypothesis and three sub-hypotheses were formulated for the study. The research questions included: (a) what is the nature and prevalence of substance abuse among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal? and (b) what is the state of existing substance abuse prevention programmes for early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal? Accordingly, the hypothesis of the study read: If early adolescents undergo a school based substance abuse prevention programme then their attitudes, knowledge and skills towards substance abuse will be influenced in a positive way. From this, three sub-hypotheses was worded: (a) If early adolescents undergo a school based substance abuse prevention programme then their attitudes towards substances and substance users, will be influenced in a positive way, (b) if early adolescents undergo a school based substance abuse prevention programme then their substance specific knowledge will increase, and (c) if early adolescents undergo a school based substance abuse prevention programme then their personal and social skills will be enhanced.
The selected research approach for the study was the combined quantitative-qualitative approach and the type of research, identified as Intervention Design and Development. An exploratory and descriptive research design were selected to reach the first three objectives of the study, namely:
(a) To conduct the investigation within a theoretically founded reference frame by undertaking a relevant literature study of the phenomenon of substance abuse, substance abuse among early adolescents and substance abuse prevention among the youth. (p> (b) To identify the nature and prevalence of substance abuse as a problematic human condition among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal.
(c) To undertake a critical review of the state of existing substance abuse prevention programmes for early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal.
The researcher also applied the comparison group pretest-posttest design (i.e. a quasi-experimental/associative design) with respondents to reach the last three objectives of the study, namely:
(a) To develop a substance abuse prevention programme among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal. (b) To implement the substance abuse prevention programme among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal. (c) To evaluate the substance abuse prevention programme among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal with a view to recommend further utilisation in practice.
Empirical research findings based on the nature and prevalence of substance abuse among early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal confirmed that alcohol was still the most popular legal drug among the youth in KwaZulu Natal with cannabis the most popular illegal substance.
Herewith, empirical findings based on the review of the state of existing substance abuse prevention programmes for early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal suggested that two substance abuse prevention programmes, namely Life orientation (Curriculum 2005) and Teenagers Against Drug Abuse (TADA) programme from SANCA seem to be more effective on preventing adolescent substance abuse than the DAP (Drug Abuse Prevention programme) of the Department of Social Welfare and Population Development or Community Education programme by the South African Narcotics Bureau (SANAB). Other Social Welfare Non-Governmental Organisations in KwaZulu Natal (e.g. Durban Children Society, “Natal Christelike Vroue Vereniging” and “Christelik-Maatskaplike Diens”) do not render any substance abuse prevention services to the youth as this is seen as a core function of SANCA.
The evaluation of the self developed substance abuse prevention programme for early adolescents in KwaZulu Natal, i.e. Project Skills Development was done by means of a self-constructed group-administered questionnaire in the pre-test i.e. before implementation of Project Skills Development, and post-test with both the experimental (25 respondents) and comparison group (25 respondents). The sample thus included a total of 50 early adolescents and the empirical data was collected to include 2 measurements, once before and once after the intervention (Project Skills Development). Empirical findings confirmed that there was a statistical significant difference in the experimental groups (a) attitudes to drugs and drug users, and (b) drug knowledge, with a 95% chance that the results were due to Project Skills Development and not to chance. There is not a statistical significant difference in the experimental groups’ personal and social skills after exposure to Project Skills Development even though a positive movement (i.e. in the development of assertiveness skills) did occur among the respondents. The 1st two of the three sub-hypotheses is thus confirmed with a positive movement identified in the 3rd hypothesis.
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