Mpowerment Project – Translating Research into Practice
This project is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Translating Research into Practice (TRIP). We have developed a state-of-the art, collaborative technology exchange system to help CBOs put the Mpowerment Project into practice in their communities. The Mpowerment Project Technology Exchange System (MPTES) is based on proven scientific principles including Diffusion of Innovations and Social Learning theories. The MPTES includes 1) a replication package consisting of two training manuals and two videotapes; 2) a 3-day comprehensive training program and on-site, follow-up trainings; 3) a technical assistance program; and 4) a variety of Internet services including a website, chat rooms, and a listserv.
What we’ve learned
Over 300 community-based organizations and health departments (CBOs/HDs) have requested assistance in implementing Mpowerment. The intervention is complex — it is theoretically sophisticated, involves multiple interrelated components, requires empowering young MSM as decision-makers, and uses community-organizing methods. But current theories about MSM and sexual risk behavior indicate that complex interventions are required to match the complex sociocultural contexts of sexual behavior and psychosocial issues affecting young MSM.
We found that replication materials alone were insufficient to effectively translate research to practice. Yet replication materials must provide abundant examples of implementation and guidelines to follow, while not dictating exactly how to implement the program. Training must be intensive and experiential, and must involve CBOs/HDs sharing their experiences with each other. TA must be individually tailored to the CBOs/HDs’ unique characteristics, communities, and stage of implementation. Also, it must be provided on a regular basis, not solely when CBOs/HDs recognize the need for it. Organizational issues must be taken into account in replication materials, training, and TA.
Effectively translating the evidence-based, community-level Mpowerment Project into practice requires a “second-generation intervention” focused on CBOs/HDs that want to implement the Project. This new intervention is called The Mpowerment Project Technology Exchange System (MPTES) and involves extensive collaboration with CBOs/HDs. In addition to replication materials, training, and TA, it also involves a website, an Internet chat room about the intervention, and an electronic discussion group.
Mpowerment in your ccommunity
Over the past several years, many organizations have expressed interest in implementing the Mpowerment Project and have contacted us with requests for information, training, and assistance with their efforts. In response to these requests, we have developed the following materials and services to assist organizations with their program implementation and evaluation efforts:
- Mpowerment Project Replication Package. This low-cost package includes a 300-page Mpowerment Project Training Manual, an M-group Facilitator Guide, an M-group Meeting Guide, a 22-minute Overview videotape, and a 47-minute M-group Training videotape. All components are packaged inside an attractive binder.
- Initial Training. A low-cost, multiday introductory training gives participants an in-depth understanding of the Mpowerment Project and the chance to interact with the original researchers and former project coordinators.
- On-site Training. Organizations that are implementing the Mpowerment Project and who have attended the initial training may receive on-site, follow-up training from our staff of trained specialists.
- Technical Assistance. Organizations implementing the Mpowerment Project may also be eligible to receive free TA from our staff of trained specialists.
- Internet Resources. A variety of online resources may also be available to your organization, including a website with additional materials (www.mpowerment.org), an online discussion group, and regularly scheduled online chats.
Please visit the Mpowerment website to learn more about the most appropriate materials and services for your organization.