Underage Drinking: Success Stories



Drinking: Success Stories



Washington – September 4, 2003



of Problem










With support from the OJJDP

Enforcing the Underage Drinking Laws Initiative, community organizations, enforcement agencies, youth, and other concerned citizens are working collaboratively to

change local ordinances and enforcement practices.


Meaningful Evaluation in Washington State

An effective evaluation needs to be useful at several levels.

Unfortunately, most of us do not get beyond the executive summary. This

misses crucial aspects afforded by a review of your program, and

opportunities to improve service delivery.

Three key recommendations for an effective evaluation are recommended:

. Work with an evaluator who understands the issues.

. Share the findings of the evaluation with those who produced and

submitted the data.

. Address all recommendations of the evaluation.

With that in mind, the recently completed cross-site evaluation of

Washington State?s Reducing Underage Drinking (RUAD) program conducted by

Patricia Fabiano, Ph.D., of Western Washington University, not only

provided a valuable document for contract and audit purposes, but also

provided a starting point for improving State management of Enforcing

Underage Drinking Laws (EUDL) funding.

To begin the evaluation process, a workshop for past and present

contractors, their coalition members, and other State-level stakeholders

was held. The workshop highlighted findings of the evaluation, suggested

improvements, showcased program strengths, and provided an opportunity to

share successful and unsuccessful strategies.

Sharing the results with those who produced the data generated the buy-in

needed to make the following changes:

. Development of a standardized set of evaluation tools to measure data

consistently across site.

. Definitions of common terms used in reporting.

. Inclusion of the evaluator at site visits.

. Development of specific objectives to address identified problem areas

in selected communities with a tie to effective environmental programs to

address those problems.

Significant progress in reducing underage drinking in Washington over the

past 4 years is evident in the results of student surveys conducted since

1988. The most recent survey conducted during the fall of 2002 of more

than 137,000 students in 752 schools indicates that the number of students

reporting alcohol consumption at least once in the 30 days before the

survey declined significantly across all age groups:

Decreases in recent alcohol use since 1998:

. 6th grade ? 42 percent

. 8th grade ? 20 percent

. 10th grade ? 22 percent

. 12th grade ? 9 percent

Decreases in binge drinking(five or more drinks in a row) since 1998:

. 8th grade ? 33 percent

. 12th grade ? 14 percent

These results are consistent with the National trend as reported in the

2002 Monitoring the Future survey, although Washington results indicate

greater positive change.

For more information, contact

Aaron Starks at (360) 438-8212 or

[email protected]




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