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Violence Prevention Project Description

Social Ecology and the Prevention of Suicide and Aggression in African American Youth 

Principal Investigator: LaVome Robinson, Ph.D.

Co-Investigator: Leonard A. Jason, Ph.D.

A grant that was funded by Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development


This indicated prevention intervention trial employs a randomized controlled design to examine the efficacy of a 15-session, culturally tailored, cognitive-behavioral group prevention intervention for urban, low income African American adolescents. The PI successfully adapted the Coping with Stress Course (Clarke et al., 1995) to be culturally sensitive and appropriate for use with urban, low-income African American adolescents. This culturally-adapted intervention (i.e., the Adapted-Coping with Stress Course [Robinson & Case, 2003]) will be significantly revised to enhance individual competencies believed to mitigate the risk for self-directed (i.e., suicidality) and inter-personal aggression. In addition, the proposed study aims to examine how neighborhood and family ecological characteristics moderate the effects of a culturally-adapted, cognitive-behavioral coping with stress prevention intervention on African American adolescents’ self-directed and interpersonal aggression. This study is expected to have broad public health implications toward the reduction of African American youth health disparities and inform practice and policy on the development of effective violence prevention interventions for African American youth. It is expected that this study will inform a future large scale effectiveness study that will embed an evidence-based, culturally sensitive violence prevention intervention within a large urban school system.