HIV West Yellowhead was a supporting agency for the Jasper Enjoy Responsibly Campaign that ran over three summers in Jasper from 2009-2011. Jasper Enjoy Responsibly focused on the three issues of heavy drinking, vandalism, and risky sexual behaviour and produced three series of posters each summer. The campaign involved young adults in every step of the campaign, with a total of 460 volunteer hours by young adults over the three years to help with focus groups, photo shoots, surveying, and events.
“Social Norms theory is based on the interaction between our perceptions of peer behaviours and our own behaviours. Research indicates that we typically overestimate the risky behaviours of others while underestimating the healthy behaviours of others” (Berkowitz, 2003.) In other words, we tend to believe that behaviours around heavy drinking, drug use or risky sex are the norm. This belief makes these behaviours acceptable and therefore increase the incidence of these behaviours. Evidence from interventions that reduce misperceptions of health norms demonstrate that messages and images illustrating health as the norm and the expected behaviour result in increased health protections and lowered risk (Perkins, 2005.)” – Quick, Michael. (2011). Jasper Enjoy Responsibly Phase III: Evaluating the use of social norms marketing to promote health among Jasper’s young adults.(p.2) Jasper Community Team.
Safe is Sexy
HIV WY is conducting a summer social norms campaign focusing solely on risky sexual behaviour among young adults in Jasper called “Safe is Sexy.” The Summer Programmer is the lead on this project each summer, surveying over 300 young adults living and working in Jasper to collect data on attitudes and experiences of condom use. The first campaign was initiated in 2012 upon recommendation of the Jasper Enjoy Responsibly final report.
Year three of this campaign is currently running and we are looking for feedback.
HIV WY conducted a positive community norms project in Whitecourt in partnership with Hilltop Junior Senior High School from 2011-2013. This project was made possible by the Alberta Healthy School Communities Wellness Grant. The goal is to promote healthy relationships and responsible sexual behaviour among teens. In 2012, the project was expanded to Harry Collinge High School in Hinton. The project engaged hundreds of students in focus groups, survey feedback, poster creation and focus testing, educational workshops, and evaluation. HIV WY is currently seeking funding to continue these projects.
Final reports and posters from these projects are available.