1) Prevention programs aimed at general populations at key transition points, such as the transition to middle school, can produce beneficial effects even among high-risk families and children.
2) Community prevention programs that combine two or more effective programs, such as family-based and school-based programs, can be more effective than a single program alone.
3) Community prevention programs reaching populations in multiple settings—for example, schools, clubs, faith-based organizations, and the media—are most effective when they present consistent, community-wide messages in each setting.
These three principles point to the effectiveness of integrated, comprehensive prevention strategies rather than one-time events. Some examples are:
- providing structured time with adults through mentoring;
- increasing positive attitudes though community service;
- communicating clear policies on substance abuse;
- supporting a large number of prevention strategies or integrating strategies into already existing activities.