Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2012, $500,000)
OJJDP's Community-Based Violence Prevention (CBVP) Field-Initiated Research and Evaluation (FIRE) Program supports methodologically rigorous research and evaluation studies that inform policy and practice consistent with the Department of Justice's mission. OJJDP is funding field-initiated studies to inform what is understood about how communities can prevent and reduce violence involving youth. This program is authorized pursuant to the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2012, 42 USC 5631; Pub. L. 112-55, 125 Stat. 552, 617.
Research demonstrates that youth violence is perpetrated by relatively small numbers of repeat offenders. Low success rates of rehabilitation strategies underscore the need for new intervention models. Evidence supports efficacy of community-based intervention programs. However, implementation of such programs is not consistent and research on factors that promote success is not systematic, further, many programs measure communitywide success, but not the individuals' success. The current proposal addresses some of these with a study of gang-involved youth offenders in Houston, TX within the context of readiness-for-change. In addition to preliminarily evaluating a community-based intervention, Baylor addresses these questions: (1) What factors (i.e., personal, environmental, or community-based interventionist factors) are predictive of a decline in violent offenses and prosocial change during intervention?; (2) Does trajectory of readiness-for-change predict re-offending or prosocial change?; (3) What is the influence of specific variables (i.e., personal, environmental, or interventionist) on trajectory of readiness-for-change?; and (4) Does personality and attitude congruence between the offender and probation officer affect the rate of re-offending or prosocial change? The overarching aim of the study is to gain understanding of factors that affect recidivism in order to inform development of successful community-based interventions for juvenile offenders. CA/NCF