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Impact of Support for Recovering Substance Abusers in the African-American Community

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Impact of Support for Recovering Substance Abusers in the African-American Community

LaTonja G. Richardson

HS 8112

Advanced Qualitative Research Methods

188-04 Jordan Avenue

Saint Albans, NY 11412

Telephone: (646) 515-3270

Email: Latonjarichards@capellauniversity.edu

Instructor: Dr. Terrence Brown


The study will show that there is an overwhelming number of recovering substance abusers in the African-American community of Jamaica, Queens that relapse. Several support systems have been identified, however, without effective church or faith-based support systems the numbers are expected to increase. This research study will set the stage for African-American recovering substance abusers and clergy and lay leaders of Jamaica, Queens to meet on common ground to discuss each others perceptions and worldviews. The aim is to go deep into a definable setting in which phenomena can be placed meaningfully within a social environment (Holliday, 2007). In an effort to avoid clashes of different beliefs and denominations, the location selected is the Clergy United for Community Empowerment, Inc. (CUCE) a non profit community-based organization in Jamaica Queens, New York.


Abstract 2

Introduction 4

SECTION 1.1 - Qualitative Research Design Principles and Practices 5

SECTION 2.1 - Qualitative Research Question 6

SECTION 3.1. - Location Selected for the Study 6

SECTION 4.1 - Methodology / Recruitment / Interview / Timetable 7

SECTION 5.1 - Data Analysis and Validation 9

SECTION 7.1 - What will the Gatekeeper Gain from the Study / Summary 9



Drug abuse is a process and more often than not, it begins in childhood. Illicit drug abuse contributes too many social ills plaguing society: violent crime, the spread of HIV/AIDS, poverty, homelessness, teenage pregnancy, school dropout rates, family violence and rising healthcare costs. As important as it is to stop the African-American community from continuing to use illicit drugs and to treat those who are addicted, one of the ways to deal with the drug problem is to reduce the demand for illicit drugs. Successful demand reduction depends greatly on successful support systems. Clergy and Lay Leaders are known to empower the community through inner healing, teaching, preaching and counseling. However, many substance abusers often resent many clergy and lay leaders due to past rejections and/or acts of hypocrisy he or she experienced when seeking help from the African-American churches. Some churches accept the use of moderate alcohol and tobacco and are not aware of the nature of addictive behavior or have chosen not to understand.

Section 1.1 - Qualitative Research Design Principles and Practices

The researcher is using the qualitative research study for exploring and understanding the meaning individuals and groups attribute to a social or human problem (Creswell, 2009). Utilizing a research design will provide a general strategy for solving the research problem "Impact of Support for Recovering Substance Abusers in the African-American Community". The research design will provide an overall structure for the procedures the researcher follows, the data collected, the data analysis that is conducted (Creswell, 2009) and will show how all of the major parts of the research project, the samples or groups, measures or programs, and methods of assignment, work together to try to address the central research questions.

There are five traditions in a qualitative research study; case study, phenomenology, narrative, ethnography and grounded theory. A case study is designed to understand one person or situation in great depth with a focus on one case or a few cases within its nature settings utilizing data collection methods consisting of observation, interviews with key informants, and written documents (Creswell, 2007). The ethnographic approach is to understand how behaviors reflect the culture of a group and focusing on a specific field site in which a group of people share a common culture and the data analysis focus on significant events. Trochim (2006), states that the self-defined purpose of grounded theory is to develop theory about phenomena of interest. The theory need to be grounded or rooted in observation. Phenomenology is a critical reflection on conscious experience, rather than subconscious motivation, and is designed to uncover the essential invariant features of that experience (Jopling, 1996). It focuses on people's subjective experiences and interpretations of the world (Trochim, 2006).

Phenomenology is applicable to my research because in addiction research is imperative to explore, not only motivations that precipitate drug use and abuse, but also examine in details the changes which take place in the social environment and in experience that enable individual's suffering from an addictive disorder to break the cycle and reach a position of recovery.

Section 2.1 - Research Question

The function of a research question is to explain specifically what the study will attempt to learn or understand (Maxwell, 2005). To better comprehend what motivates a recovering substance abuser in the African American community to choose a specific support service; and how likely they are to choose support services from clergy/lay leadership in the African American community for instance, community-based organizations, faith-based organizations or places of worship; the research question has been formed. How does a recovering substance abuser identify an effective support service in the African-American community?

Section 3.1 - Location Selected for the Study

Clergy United for Community Empowerment, Inc. (CUCE) is a non-sectarian 501©3 non profit organization



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