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SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention 2013 Native American Service to Science Initiative Announcement - Applications Due Mar 25, 2013

March 4, 2013

SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention

2013 Native AmericanServiceto Science Initiative Announcement

Due Date Extension

Now Due March 25, 2013

2013 Native American Service to Service Initiative - Starter Guide for Participants PDF

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announces its Native American Service to Science Initiative. Service to Science is a national initiative operated by SAMHSA’s Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies and is dedicated toenhancing the evaluation capacity of innovative programs and practices that aim to prevent substance abuse and related mental and behavioral health problems or the underlying factors associated with increased risk. TheNative American Service to Science initiative is an ancillary project of the Service to Science Initiative and is implemented by SAMHSA’s Native American Center for Excellence (NACE) and Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies (CAPT). The Native American Service to Science Initiative assists tribal program developers, implementers, and evaluators in applying more rigorous evaluation methodologies to their work. Ultimately, the initiative supports tribal prevention efforts by increasing the number of programs that meet evidence-based standards.

Tribal programs must complete an application to be considered for the

Native American Service to Science Initiative.

Applications and all support documents are available by following this link: 2013NASTSInitiative  Applications must be received no later than March 25, 2013.

Please send all applications to LynnBurns, NACE Executive Project Specialist as an email attachment to: or via fax at:  (240) 328-6170

The Purpose of the Native American Service to Science Initiative

Over the last decade,SAMHSA has emphasized the use of evidence-based interventions (EBIs) to prevent substance abuse and address critical mental health needs.  This emphasis is central to SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework,  a five-step planning model based on  epidemiological  needs assessment, capacity building, planning, implementation, and evaluation. SAMHSA also recognizes that many innovative programs do not have the ability to demonstrate effectiveness, due to factors including a lack of resources or difficulties conceptualizing and designing evaluation. To build evaluation capacity at the local level for tribal communities, SAMHSA has established the Native American Service to Science Initiative, with the explicit long-range goals of:

•           Supporting innovative tribal interventions seeking to demonstrate and document evidence of effectiveness.

•           Increasing the number and array of EBIs from which tribal communities can select to address substance abuse.

The Service to Science Approach

Similar to the national initiative, the Native American Service to Science Initiative offers a combination of

face-to-face and electronic technical assistance (TA), tailored to meet the unique evaluation needs and readiness of participating programs. Using an intensive, hands-on approach, experienced TA providers  workone-on-one with participants, matching services provided to evolving program needs.

Benefits of Participation

Pending the availability of FY2013 funds, selected programs will participate in the FY2013 Native American Service to Science Initiative and, in so doing, may benefit from:

•           Access to evaluation experts as well as to other simple menting locally developed and innovative prevention                   programs

•           Enhanced and significantly improved programevaluationcapacity

•           Improved programmatic approaches informed by evaluati on findings

•           Eligibility for competitive subcontract awards to enhance evaluation methodologies

•           Greater quality of submissions to national, evidence-based program registries, such as SAMHSA’s National   

            Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practice (NREPP)

Previous Participants’ Accomplishments

•           Application and acceptance to national evidence-based program registries such as SAMHSA’s NREPP

•           Presentations of program’s successes at national conferences

•           Publication of reports and journal articles documenting program achievements

•           Additional funding leveraged from federal or other sources

Some Areas of TechnicalAssistance

Participating  programs  receive  various  types  of  assistance  from  their  TA  providers  to  meet  each program’s specific needs. Some examples of TA include consultation from TA providers on how to:

•           Develop culturally appropriate logic models that link program goals and objectives to outcomes

•           Design mixed-method data collection procedures

•           Identify, develop,and adapt appropriate evaluation measures and instruments

•           Apply procedures to protect the rightsof evaluation participants

•           Conduct qualitativeand quantitative data analyses

•           Hire and/or work with an evaluator

•           Explore issues of innovation,adaptation,and fidelity

•           Understand criteria for participation in SAMHSA’s NREPP

Who is Eligible?

Eligible participants include practitioners or local evaluators who represent innovative tribal prevention programs interested in demonstrating their program’s effectiveness using more rigorous evaluation methods.To be eligible for Service to Science, programs must be:

•           Focused on the prevention ofsubstance abuse and,if relevant, related behavioral health problems.The program should not focus on the treatment of individuals diagnosed with mental illness orsubstance abuse disorders.

•           Innovative in design or focus—that is, embody prevention approaches resulting from experience in the tribal community and be distinguished by their creativity, originality, andutility. Programs must also be a first-time recipient of any Service to Science services.

•           Responsive to community needs.Programs must address local substance abuse prevention.

•           Informed by practical experience. Participating programs are developed with or informed by input from the Native American populations served and/or based on practical experience working with the Native American population in the setting in which the program is delivered.

•           Focusedon alleviating behavioral health disparities.Participating programs must target

American Indian or Alaskan Native populations affected by substance abuse, or by substance abuse associated with trauma and menta lhealth problems.

•           Committed to evaluation. Programs must be willing to dedicate the effort and time required to enhancing the rigor of program evaluation. Pending the availability of FY2013 funds, participating programs will work collaboratively with assigned evaluation experts for five to six days within a12-month period. During this time, participants will also work independently toi mplement recommendations made by the evaluation experts.Thus, programs must have a funding level sufficient to operate for at least one year and be ready and eager to build evaluation capacity.

In addition to the above criteria, SAMHSA is interested in programs that address SAMHSA Strategic Initiative (SSI) #1: Prevention of Substance Abuse and Mental Illness, Goals 1 – 4. These goals include the following:

•           With primary prevention as the focus, build emotional health, prevent or delay onset of, and mitigate symptoms                and complications from substance abuse and mental illness.

•           Prevent or reduce consequences of underage drinking and adult problem drinking.

•           Prevent suicides and attempted suicides.

•           Reduce prescription drug misuse and abuse.

For more information on the SAMHSA Strategic Initiatives, go to

Contact Information

For information about SAMHSA’s Native American Service to Science Initiative, please contact:

AJ Ernst, Ph.D.
NACE Project Director
Phone: 301-509-5851



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