Effective Programmes

A pillar of Communities That Care is the use of a menu of proven effective prevention programmes directed to youth problem behaviours such as violence, delinquency or substance abuse by reducing specific risk factors or enhancing protective factors.

Practitioners working in the field of youth and their parents need information about which programmes work for what kind of problem behaviour or underlying factors. Within CTC, national guidebooks or online databanks have been developed where the available programmes are inventoried.

The EU-funded project “Making CTC work at the European level” (1/2013 – 12/2015) enabled us to start a review of prevention and early intervention programmes tested and found to be effective in Europe.

The first step was to identify prevention and early intervention programmes in the areas of children's and young people's behaviour, relationships, education, physical health or mental health that have been tested in Europe in randomised controlled trial (RCT) or quasi-experimental design (QED) evaluations.

In the second step those programmes and studies were reviewed against standards of evidence used by Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development, covering the dimensions of intervention specificity, evaluation quality, intervention impact and system readiness.

Third, the evidence was classified in terms of the effectiveness in a European context.

The responsible partner for this part of the project was the Dartington Social Research Unit in the UK.

The results are published in a searchable online databank hosted by EMCDDA, the new Xchange registry.

What works in Europe?

We are developing a database of effective prevention programmes for Communities That Care in Europe. For this purposes we have identified programmes that have been tested and found effective in Europe, and these are included in an online database that could be used by CTC sites in Europe. The new Xchange registry hosted by EMCDDA includes the results of the CTC-EU initiative in a step-wise process. We have described the process of identifying, reviewing and rating programmes and studies to inform the online database in an extra report. Essentially as a by-product, the report analyses the programmes and studies that were included and seeks to draw out some initial findings and implications. The CTC - EU project result report is available for download here.