Meth in the U.S.
PROJECT OVERVIEWThe Meth Project is a large-scale prevention program of The Partnership at Drugfree.org aimed at reducing methamphetamine use through public service messaging, public policy, and community outreach. Central to the integrated, research-based campaign is MethProject.org, a definitive source for information about Meth for teens. MethProject.org is supported by hard-hitting television, radio, print, online, mobile, and social media campaigns that communicate the risks of Meth use.
Since the Meth Project first launched in Montana in 2005, teen Meth use is down 63%2, Meth-related crime declined 62%3, and the state has seen a 33% reduction in the cost of methamphetamine, saving the state $100 million over two years.4 The Meth Project then expanded to seven additional states: Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, and Wyoming, which have reported similar results. In the two years following the launch of the Idaho Meth Project, the state saw a 50% decrease in teen Meth use5, the largest decline in the nation, and Arizona's rate of teen Meth use declined by 65%6.The Meth Project was cited by the White House as one of the nation's most effective prevention programs and a model for the nation and was named the 3rd most effective philanthropy in the world by Barron's.
APPROACHEvery day, people are faced with the decision to try Meth. Many perceive benefits in using the drug, but little to no risk. This is the root of the problem. The goal of the Meth Project is to arm teens and young adults with the facts about methamphetamine so that they can make well-informed decisions when presented with the opportunity to try it.
RESEARCH-BASED MESSAGING CAMPAIGNThe Meth Project conducts periodic national and statewide survey research to understand attitudes and behaviors toward methamphetamine. The Meth Project's campaigns are informed by six years of extensive quantitative and qualitative research with prevention experts and more than 50,000 teens and young adults through 60 national and statewide surveys, and 112 focus groups and have been developed
in consultation with top experts in research, prevention, treatment, advertising, and digital media.
The Meth Project's integrated campaigns are designed to reduce Meth use by educating teens, early and often, about the risks of the drug. The centerpiece of its research-based campaigns is MethProject.org, a definitive source for information about Meth for teens. Through an immersive multimedia experience, MethProject.org addresses teens' most frequently asked questions about the physical, mental, and social impacts of Meth. MethProject.org is supported by hard-hitting television, radio, print, online, mobile, and social media campaigns that graphically communicate the risks of Meth use.
The Meth Project's campaigns have been cited for their uncompromising approach and demonstrated impact, having won 50 awards, including 11 Gold ADDY Awards, 19 Silver ADDY Awards, 2 Gold Effie Awards, and the Cannes Lions Award at the Cannes International Advertising Festival.The Meth Project also collaborated with HBO to develop a one-hour documentary film, Montana Meth, as part of the organization's mission to raise awareness of the dangers of methamphetamine use. In an effort to increase the level of public discourse, the film shows, first-hand, the impact of the Meth problem in Montana.
PUBLIC POLICY AND COMMUNITY ACTIONThe Meth Project engages in activities to increase awareness of the critical nature of the Meth problem, influencing and escalating public dialogue to find solutions. Coordinating closely with local, state, and federal agencies and organizations, the Meth Project organizes a broad range of local community outreach programs to raise awareness and to mobilize communities to assist in Meth awareness and prevention activities.
The Meth Project organized the successful Paint the State campaign, a statewide public art contest that leverages the creativity and passion of young people to broadly communicate the risks of Meth use through public art. Held in 2006 and 2010, in Montana and Idaho, Paint the State prompted thousands of teens and their families to create more than 1,300 works of monumental-scale art with a strong anti-Meth message.The March Against Meth was an unprecedented event in which more than 2,300 teens led the call for continued funding for the Montana Meth Project. It was the largest teen demonstration in Montana's history, and culminated in the delivery of petitions signed by more than 55,000 Montana residents requesting financial support for the Project from the State Legislature. The petitions were accepted on President's Day, February 16, 2009 at the steps of the state capitol. Click here to learn more and to view the March Against Meth documentary.
METH PROJECT MODELThe Meth Project partners with states to implement its large-scale Meth prevention program consisting of market research, public service messaging, and community outreach to effect a substantial reduction in methamphetamine use.
The proven, research-based campaign was developed by experts from across the nation. Millions of dollars have been invested in market research, message development, survey methodologies, testing, and advertising production. State affiliates of the Meth Project leverage the partners and programs assembled by the Project.The Meth Project is available to states that wish to utilize the campaign to effect a reduction in Meth use. The program consists of:
- Organization and governance models
- Research-based public service messaging campaigns including TV, radio, print, and digital campaigns
- Media planning model designed to ensure maximum reach
- Measurement methodologies including surveys and focus group research
- Public policy initiatives
- Community action plans and public outreach initiatives
- Public Service Messaging: Radio, television, print/outdoor, digital, and mobile advertising campaigns, websites, documentaries, collateral, and other educational and outreach materials.
- Trademarks: "Meth Project" and its derivatives, "Montana Meth," "Not Even Once," "March Against Meth," "Paint the State," and "Ask MethProject.org."
- Survey Content: Survey and focus group instruments and methodologies.
1 RAND, The Economic Cost of Methamphetamine Use In the United States, 2005. February 2009.
2 Montana Office of Public Instruction, 2011 Montana Youth Risk Behavior Survey. June 2012.
3 Montana Attorney General Mike McGrath, Methamphetamine in Montana: A Follow-Up Report on Trends and Progress. March 2008.
4 Montana Department of Justice, The Economic Cost of Methamphetamine Use in Montana. February 2009.
5 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 2012.
6 Arizona Criminal Justice Commission, Arizona Youth Survey, 2012.