Investigating Parental Preferences Regarding the Development and Implementation of a Parent-Directed Drug-Related Educational Intervention: an Exploratory Study
Computing, Health and Science
Exercise, Biomedical and Health Science, Child Health Promotion Research Centre
Strengthening parents’ capacity to reduce children’s risk of alcohol, tobacco and other drug-related harm is recognised as an important public health strategy in Australia, but engaging parents’ involvement in these training programs is known to be challenging. This study utilised a self-complete questionnaire and structured small group discussions with parents in order to identify their needs in terms of communicating with their children about drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes. It also investigated their preferences regarding the nature of a parent drug education intervention as well as strategies to recruit and actively engage them in parent-directed interventions. Parents identified numerous barriers to their participation in such programs and reported any intervention targeting them should be able to be completed in their home, be non-judgemental, easy to read, time-efficient, easy to use, fun, colourful and interactive. Parents recommended practical communication skills (such as how to talk with children, how to raise the topic and what topics to talk about) be addressed in the intervention. They also recommended a range and combination of strategies to promote and maintain parent involvement, such as providing small rewards for the children of parents who participate. Despite some limitations, the findings of this study contribute important practical knowledge regarding how to recruit, engage and retain higher percentages of parents in parent training programs. [Beatty SE, Cross DS. Investigating parental preferences regarding the development and implementation of a parentdirected drug-related educational intervention: an exploratory study.