Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2008, $89,435)
Juveniles are responsible for significant percentage all serious violent crimes (Dept of Justice) and increasing numbers are involved in gangs. As a magnet for youth and a forum for acquiring social skills and mentoring, where intense competition can quickly escalate into violence, sports offer an ideal intervention point. Team coaches and captains can play a pivotal role in averting violent conflict among youth, but most lack necessary knowledge and experience.
The Non-Violence Training Program will reduce incidence of youth violence by empowering coaches, team captains, and other sports educators who work with middle- and high-school aged at-risk youth, primarily in urban areas where rates of violence among youth are disproportionately high. The primary activity is a two-day pilot training involving 20-40 coaches and team captains from around RI and the US, that will provide knowledge and skills necessary to practice and promote nonviolence. Other activities include training material dissemination, web-based training, a national network for exchanging best practices, and laying the groundwork for program expansion.
Progress will be measured by tracking the number of people receiving training and materials and involved in network, the number of youth they work with, and the incidence of youth violence in cities where they work.