Jane Stapleton, M.A.
While prevention practitioners are well-intentioned, they sometimes don’t teach people the skills to prevent the problem at hand. So, instead of teaching knowledge and skills, they only teach knowledge (or facts) about the problem. While knowledge is important, participants need to learn skills to stop the problem and they need the opportunities to practice these skills in supportive and encouraging environments. Skills are an essential part of prevention and unfortunately are not emphasized enough by practitioners. Also, practitioners don’t always get input and feedback from their target audience as they develop new prevention strategies or adapt or adopt existing ones. This reduces the likelihood that the prevention strategies will resonate with the target audience and thus, a lot of energy, good will and money can be spent on prevention strategies that aren’t effective.