Recruiting and Engaging American Indian and Alaska Native Teens and Young Adults in a SMS Help-Seeking Intervention: Lessons Learned from the BRAVE Study
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
This paper shares lessons learned recruiting and engaging participants in the BRAVE study, a randomized controlled trial carried out by the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board and the mHealth Impact Lab. The team recruited 2330 American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) teens and young adults nationwide (15–24 years old) via social media channels and text message and enrolled 1030 to participate in the 9 month study. Teens and young adults who enrolled in this study received either: 8 weeks
... ed either: 8 weeks of BRAVE text messages designed to improve mental health, help-seeking skills, and promote cultural pride and resilience; or 8 weeks of Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) text messages, designed to elevate and re-affirm Native voices in science, technology, engineering, math and medicine; and then received the other set of messages. Results indicate that social media channels like Facebook and Instagram can be used to recruit AI/AN teens and young adults. Retention in this study was high, with 87% of participants completing both the BRAVE and STEM intervention arms. Lessons learned from this process may help teen and young adult-serving organizations, prevention programs, policy makers, researchers, and educators as they support the next generation of AI/AN change makers.