The purpose of this study was to determine whether the Lummi Nation's Community Mobilization Against Drugs (CMAD) Initiative successfully achieved its four stated goals, which were to reduce illicit drug trafficking, reduce rates of substance use disorder and addiction, prevent drug abuse and underage drinking among youth, and mobilize the community in all aspects of prevention, intervention, and suppression of alcohol and drug use, drug abuse, and drug trafficking. The study also aimed to evaluate whether the outcomes of the demonstration project had application for other tribal communities confronting similar public safety issues related to substance abuse.
Six focus groups were held with individuals representing the following populations: service providers, policy makers, adult clients and family members, youth, traditional tribal healers/practitioners, and community members. All focus groups were conducted on-site at Lummi by two members of the evaluation team, both trained moderators, who oversaw and ensured the focused flow of discussion on the defined questions. The focus groups occurred in surroundings that ensured privacy and confidentiality. All consenting processes occurred just prior to the start of the groups except for the youth group session, in which all participants were required to come with signed parental/participant consent forms. Participants were handed copies of the focus group questions to refer to throughout the process. There were six different sets of questions, one for each group. Each set included 9 to 10 questions. All questions followed the format from general to specific and reflected an open-ended approach that encouraged discussion. These questions were reviewed by each member of Evaluation Oversight Committee (EOC), individually and as part of the group. All the focus groups were openly audio taped with full knowledge and agreement of the participants. In addition to taping, the moderators took notes throughout the session. The focus groups took from 90 to 120 minutes to conduct, depending on the length and time participants took to discuss the questions. In addition to focus groups, the evaluation team conducted an interview session with two traditional providers who preferred this format. These two individuals were interviewed together using the same questions employed in the focus group for traditional healers. All participants were provided with snacks and were compensated for their time and effort. Because the service providers and policy makers were paid employees of the Lummi Nation, they received prints of paintings done by Northwest Indian artists. All other focus group participants received a $20 gift cards to WalMart at the conclusion of the session.
Forty-seven adults and youth participated in the focus groups. Of those, 26 were female and 21 were male. The size of the 6 focus groups ranged from 5 to 11 participants. All but a couple of the participants in the focus groups were tribal members. The sample for the service providers, policy makers, youth and community groups was chosen by the Evaluation Oversight Committee (EOC) membership and the Community Mobilized Against Drugs (CMAD) Coordinator. Because of issues of confidentiality, the participant list for the youth was compiled by the coordinator and counselors of the Youth Enrichment and Social Services (Y.E.S.S.) program. These designated individuals took on the responsibility of contacting the individuals. This same method was used to compile and recruit participants to the adult client group. As for the traditional healers group, the CMAD Coordinator arranged for the evaluation team member to meet with the Lummi Cultural Commission during their meeting, since many of its members were on the list of traditional healers that was generated by the EOC.
All members of the Lummi Nation who are part of the following groups: service providers, policy makers, adult clients and family members, youth, traditional tribal healers/practitioners, and community members.
Focus group interviews administered by the researchers.
The focus group questions were open-ended and addressed knowledge and impact of the Community Mobilized Against Drugs (CMAD) Initiative; issues or problems with the Initiative; how the community viewed its actions; the importance and inclusion of a cultural perspective (traditional healers and others) in implementing various aspects of the CMAD Initiative; and how the Initiative has affected work and networking capabilities, policy making decisions, and/or treatment. Participants were also asked to think about what they would like CMAD to address and about their perceptions and definitions of some of the service barriers they may be experiencing (clients, community, and/or youth).