Program History

The original iteration of Listening to One Another to Grow Strong (LTOA) was culturally adapted from a program developed in the United States in 1982, called Strengthening Families (SF). The Strengthening Families program was designed to reduce youth substance abuse and problematic behaviour, and has been culturally adapted to suit different contexts across the globe.

In 1996, a team led by Dr. Les Whitbeck at the University of Lincoln, Nebraska, developed an Anishinabe adaptation of the SF program (USA), called Biizindadedah (BZDDD). Participants’ retention rates, family communication and parenting skills improved, and, compared to a control group, younger youth delayed their first instance of alcohol consumption. For more information, please click on the link below. The intervention was also adapted for other Indigenous communities in Lakota, Navajo, and Pueblo nations.

Summary of Prevention Program Outcomes

In 2011 the Public Health Agency of Canada funded a third iteration of the BZDDD program: the Listening to One Another to Grow Strong program (English translation of BZDDD). This version was adapted and implemented in four First Nations communities in Western Ontario and Eastern Manitoba.

Since 2011, the Listening to One Another to Grow Strong program has partnered with many culturally-distinct Indigenous communities across Canada (British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia) to adapt and deliver the LTOA program. The research team has had the opportunity to collaborate with communities to follow their processes throughout the project.

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