Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $500,000)
The primary goals of the OJJDP youth violence portfolio are to promote the wellbeing of children, youth, and families; reduce violence; and improve community capacity to address all forms of violence. This program supports the enhancement of OJJDPs youth violence prevention initiatives by inviting OJJDP localities presently implementing the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention (Forum), Community-Based Violence Prevention (CBVP), and/or the Defending Childhood initiatives to apply for funding to adopt practices and implement models from a different program to achieve their shared violence prevention objectives. This program serves to encourage current initiative sites to enhance, integrate, and align youth violence prevention strategies; coordinate existing resources; engage in community education and outreach; develop and maintain strong collaborations; increase the involvement of youth and families in decision making; and engage the faith community, media, law enforcement, advocates, victim services, business, and other key partners in collective action. These efforts are authorized under Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2015 (Pub. L. 113-235).
The Crown Heights Community Mediation Center will enhance its Save Our Streets (S.O.S.) programming in two central Brooklyn neighborhoods (Crown Heights and Bedford-Stuyvesant) that suffer from elevated levels of violence. The goal of the proposed program enhancement is to bring more comprehensive trauma-informed services to Central Brooklyns young people those on the street, those in the hospital due to community violence, and those in school-based programs. As part of this program enhancement, the Mediation Center will work to meet the following objectives: 1) create an interdisciplinary and cross-sector advisory board that will address the prevention of community violence and the promotion of healing and recovery for residents most intimately affected by violence in Central Brooklyn; 2) expand and broaden crisis and recovery services available for victims of community violence in Central Brooklyn, and 3) create a multi-media public awareness campaign that highlights the psychological, physical and social impacts of violence, strategies for preventing violence, and promotion of pathways to healing from violence.
The Mediation Center will measure performance through the collection and review of the following data: number of advisory board members engaged and meetings held; number of trainings provided to advisory board members; the completion of the community assessment and final strategic plan; number of victims provided trauma-informed care; increases in knowledge and skills around emotional regulation, trauma, and cycles of violence; number of participants connected to education and job opportunities; self-reported decreases in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms; number of S.O.S. participants who complete programming; number of people reached by the proposed public awareness campaign; increases in youth understanding and knowledge of violence and conflict; skill development in youth participants; and increases in the youths feelings of efficacy around collective action.