Photograph of Brianna Griggs, Kate Merrill, and Nyssa Snow-Hill

Brianna Griggs, MPH, Kate Merrill, PhD, and Nyssa Snow-Hill, PhD presented a symposium at the 18th Biennial Conference for the Society for Community Research and Action – “Using Innovative Health Promotion Programs and Implementation Strategies to Address Health Disparities among Black Youth”.

This symposium reviewed three innovative strategies for implementing evidence-based programs (EBP) in settings serving Black youth. First, Brianna Griggs discussed how an academic- community partnership can be utilized for improving adoption and sustainability of IMARA, a HIV- prevention program delivered by Black women for Black adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) and their female caregivers. Second, Kate Merrill discussed a community- engaged approach for adapting and piloting IMARA-South Africa, a HIV- prevention program designed for Black AGYW and their female caregivers in South Africa. Lastly, Nyssa Snow-Hill discussed using a technology- based training tool to reduce implementation barriers associated with delivering PHAT Life, a comprehensive sex education, mental health, and substance use EBP in juvenile justice settings. Each presentation explicitly addressed how the strategies employed can improve implementation outcomes of EBPs delivered by organizations working with vulnerable youth. Presentations highlighted the importance of including diverse and representative collaborators and considered how innovative tools and interventions can reduce barriers that perpetuate health inequities.