Research Projects

Needs Assessment & Efficacy Trial of keepin’ it REAL in Kenya

group of children

Target Population:
7th and 9th grade students in and around Nairobi, Kenya
Project Team:

Flavio F. Marsiglia, PhD; Samuel Mugawinny; Stephen S. Kulis, PhD; Judy Krysik, PhD

Project Status: Active

In partnership with the African Institute for Children Studies (AICS) in Nairobi, Kenya, the Global Center for Applied Health Research and Center for Child Wellbeing facilitated a community needs assessment and efficacy trial of the keepin' it REAL prevention program for middle school students.  

The project goals were to inform potential cultural adaptation of the keepin' it REAL program; determine whether the program produced desired effects on substance use behaviors, attitudes, and resistance skills; estimate the effect sizes, and assess the acceptability and feasibility of the program from the perspective of multiple stakeholders.

A community needs assessment to understand substance use behaviors, attitudes, and resistance strategies utilized by adolescents in Nairobi, Kenya. The needs assessment consisted of anonymous questionnaires completed by 7th and 9th-grade students and focus groups with students, teachers, and other community stakeholders. The pilot efficacy trial was conducted in four middle schools, with two randomly assigned to serve as the treatment/intervention group and the other two as a comparison/control group.

Compared to students in the control group, keepin’ it REAL students reported:
• reductions in the frequency of alcohol use, heavy drinking, prescription drug misuse,
• and ecstasy use.