Communitarianism and youth empowerment: Motivation for participation in a community-based substance abuse prevention coalition

Autumn M. Bermea, David T. Lardier, Brad Forenza, Pauline Garcia-Reid, Robert J. Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


In recent years, collaborative efforts between universities and community-based coalitions have helped develop prevention–intervention efforts to decrease the prevalence of drug and alcohol use among youth in low-income, majority–minority urban areas. One theory often employed to understand the efficacy of community member involvement is McMillian and Chavis's (1986) sense of community (SOC) model. This model posits how 4 main tenants (i.e., sense of belonging, emotional connection, needs fulfillment, and influence) lead to increased empowerment. The present study examines how individual SOC affected substance abuse coalition members’ (N = 17) motivations for serving on a coalition. Findings explore how all four tenants of McMillian and Chavis's (1986) model influenced community members’ involvement in the coalition, which have implications for prevention, policy, and further research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-62
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology

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