COUNTRY: UNITED STATES
Developer: Temple University, Center or Intergenerational Learning
Partners: Funding from the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Program Overview: Across Ages is a community based program that aims to reduce alcohol consumption and substance use among young people ages 9-13. The program pairs students with trained mentors (age 55+) in an effort to enhance protective factors.
Program Design: Students must spend 2 hours of one-on-one time with their mentor each week. They are also required to perform community service each week, attend weekly social competence training, and attend monthly weekend events for families and mentors. Social competence training uses the Positive Youth Development Curriculum (PYDC) and can be conducted in school or after school. Program materials are available in English and Spanish.
Evaluation: The original program evaluation used a quasi-experimental design with randomized pre and post-tests administered to control and intervention groups. The evaluation focused on changes in protective measures, including significant improvements in attitudes toward school and elders; the Rand well-being scale; reactions to situations involving drug use; community service; self-reported alcohol consumption; and frequency of drug use.
At 3 years, results showed statistically significant improvements for:
- Attitudes towards school, future, and elders
- Attitudes towards and knowledge about older people
- Rand well-being scale scores
- Reactions to situations involving drug use
- Frequency of alcohol consumption and substance use (declines in frequency)
Program Website: http://acrossages.org/
1. LoSciuto, L., Rajala, A. K., Townsend, T. N., Taylor, A. S. (1996). An outcome evaluation of Across Ages: An intergenerational mentoring approach to drug prevention. Journal of Adolescent Research, Vol. 11(1), 116-129.
Target Audience: Elementary school (10 years and younger), Middle school (10-14 years)
Issues: Underage Drinking
Setting: School clubs or community organizations, Schools
Approach: Community or Environmental