Silhouette of Cameras.

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FALL 2013

Behind the Lens newsletter. State/Territory Underage Drinking Prevention Videos Project. Keeping you informed, inspired, and up to date.
In Your Words Map of the United States

Beverly Johnson
Strategic Prevention Framework State Incentive Grant Coordinator
Division of Mental Health & Substance Abuse Services
Alabama Department of Mental Health

Beverly Johnson Alabama—your state—produced a 5-minute video aimed at parents and grandparents titled “We Love Them to Death.” What about the production experience was particularly memorable for you?
The most memorable experience would be the collaborative efforts of certified Alabama substance abuse prevention provider agencies, school systems, and city/county personnel working together to bring forth positive community impact through the underage drinking prevention effort.

Has anyone who has seen your video expressed his or her reaction to it, whether favorable or unfavorable?
We have received favorable feedback from substance abuse prevention providers.

Recently, you provided feedback as part of an evaluation of the State/Territory Videos Project. How easy or difficult did you find it to provide the information requested? If you found it difficult, what would have helped you?
The ability to obtain accurate utilization of the video was a bit difficult due to relying on individual providers and communities submitting video usage data. Some providers/communities were more readily equipped to obtain and report usage information than others. The awareness of a data usage timeline that could have been disseminated to the providers and communities would have served as a guidance of what data were to be reported and when. In brief, establishing an adequate timeframe to obtain such information to report would be helpful.

Why do you feel it’s important for the states and territories to contribute to this ongoing evaluation?
One benefit of obtaining information is to gauge the effectiveness of underage drinking prevention initiatives. Providing feedback that will assist partners can strategically enhance prevention efforts and promote positive outcomes.

If you had the opportunity to create another video, what would you do differently?
If we had the opportunity to create another video, we would incorporate college students.

What would you do the same?
We would continue our successful community collaborations.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thank you for the opportunity.

Tips from the pros


A senior producer shares insights

A senior producer shares insights on making a video even more effective.

Create a reasonable production schedule. Although it is sometimes possible to squeeze a lot of activity into 1 day, it sometimes is better to stretch a shoot over 2 days. After 8 to 10 hours of high-intensity shooting, you and the crew are going to be tired. Rather than stretch an already long day even later and risk compromising the quality of the final product, work with your producer to create a manageable production schedule that accounts for travel to and from locations, equipment setup and breakdown, lunch, and other factors affecting time required.

State/Territory Videos Project Coordinator

Overcoming Obstacles


Challenge: The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) Native American Center for Excellence (NACE) wanted to create a video that would encompass diverse perspectives from across Indian Country. Because hundreds of tribes are spread across the United States, each with its own unique culture, the challenge was how to accomplish this goal while making effective use of limited resources.

Solution: The NACE team identified an annual conference, THRIVE (Tribal Health—Reaching out InVolves Everyone), in Portland, Oregon, that would bring together youth from tribes across the country. As Josefine Haynes-Battle of NACE explains, “The THRIVE Conference allowed us the opportunity to work with many tribes and tribal youth representatives. A little bit of determination, creative planning, and the opportunity to tap into existing resources were key to the success of this video.”

Spread the word


Here are some ways states/territories are getting the message out:

Maryland premiered its video on October 8, 2013, at a theater rented for the state’s annual substance abuse awareness program. The state’s video planning and review team also alerted the press about video production, resulting in an article in the Carroll County Times.

Whats New


Videos for three states and five territories are currently in preproduction and are scheduled for completion by March 2014. At that time, 48 states, 8 territories, the District of Columbia, and NACE will have produced their own underage drinking prevention videos. As this project nears its end:

  • SAMHSA extends a thank-you to everyone who has participated in, contributed to, or otherwise been involved with the production of his or her local video. The overwhelming success of this project is due to each of you and the role you played.
  • The evaluation phase of this project is well underway to measure the impacts of the videos as well as the video production process. If you have not been contacted about the evaluation, please be on the lookout for an e-mail or phone call in the near future.
Illinois underage drinking prevention video

Illinois' underage drinking prevention video
Status Check

Recently completed:

  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Nevada
  • South Dakota

Currently in postproduction:

  • New Hampshire
  • Pennsylvania
  • Wisconsin

Currently in preproduction:

  • American Samoa
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Hawaii
  • Marshall Islands
  • Minnesota
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Palau
  • Rhode Island

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