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Promoting the Well-being of Urban Youth through Drama-based Peer Education

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Objectives: The aim of this study was to examine youths' perceptions of a drama-based peer education approach to promote adolescent well-being. Methods: High school students facilitated workshops on one of 7 topics (eg, dating violence) for 4733 urban elementary, middle, and high school students. Audience members' perceptions of workshop content and implementation were examined. Results: Analyses suggest that the peer-led workshops addressed important problems for youth in the community, were an effective way to deliver information about the topics to children and teens, and helped audience members to learn more about the topics and how to make responsible decisions. The study also found that some program outcomes differed by sex and age. Conclusions: Findings suggest that school-based peer education that integrates drama arts is a promising approach for promoting wellness and reducing exposure to violence among urban youth. In addition, findings suggest that we can facilitate positive outcomes to the extent that we match program content to the developmental needs of children and adolescents. The implications of these findings are discussed in terms of advancing research on drama-based peer education interventions for urban youth.
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Keywords: ADOLESCENT WELL-BEING; DRAMA INTERVENTIONS; PEER EDUCATION; URBAN YOUTH

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Associate Professor, The College of New Jersey, Department of Psychology, Ewing, NJ;, Email: [email protected] 2: Millhill Child & Family Development, Trenton, NJ 3: The College of New Jersey, Department of Psychology, Ewing, NJ

Publication date: November 1, 2017

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  • The American Journal of Health Behavior seeks to improve the quality of life through multidisciplinary health efforts in fostering a better understanding of the multidimensional nature of both individuals and social systems as they relate to health behaviors.

    The Journal aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the impact of personal attributes, personality characteristics, behavior patterns, social structure, and processes on health maintenance, health restoration, and health improvement; to disseminate knowledge of holistic, multidisciplinary approaches to designing and implementing effective health programs; and to showcase health behavior analysis skills that have been proven to affect health improvement and recovery.

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