I AM YOUR NEIGHBOR | BIG DREAMS

These Community Conversations will feature brief presentations by Indianapolis’s own African -American former Police Chiefs, Rick Hite Former Chief of IMPD, Lloyd Crowe Former Assistant Chief IMPD, Bill Benjamin Former Deputy Chief IMPD, and Daryl Pearce Former Assistant Chief IMPD teach/coaching crisis intervention, police and community relations, and what every child needs to succeed based upon proven success they have had in their careers and they understand the needs and concerns of the community.

2016 was identified as one of the most violent year for Indianapolis in recent history. Unfortunately, crime and violence was centralized in 5 key neighborhoods 46201, 46205, 46208, 46218, and 46222.

The I am Your Neighbor Champaign is a Community Violence Prevention program the Big Dreams Program is a targeted Intervention program designed to meet the needs of families and youth impacted by violence in those neighborhoods that have been most impacted by community violence.

It is well established that community violence is causes by social, cultural, economic, familial and other ecological factors. This proposal is based on an acknowledgment of the complexity of needs, best practices, and the strengths of resources of the Him by Her Foundation to strategically meet the needs of communities that are currently been impacted by adverse community experiences.

 

In the 2016 Community Needs Assessment conducted by IU Health, St. Francis Alliance, and St. Vincent; Community Health Network have been conducting surveys focused on finding the most prevalent health needs of the community. In that assessment Public Safety, Poverty, and Improved Access to Health Care, Services and Opportunities were universally identified as key community needs. 

Additionally, the still relevant 2014 Community Violence Reduction Plan convened by Flanner House and support by the Indianapolis Foundation and the City of Indianapolis Department of Public Safety identified among other things the following goals:

1.     Create, promote and protect community values by:  increasing community members, stakeholders, law enforcement, business and legislative official’s ability to work together to develop effective polices, procedures and practices to address community violence.  With the following additional goals:

a.     Create opportunities for the community to write and create value statements

b.      Improve neighbor to neighbor relations

c.     Create crime reporting friendly neighborhoods

2.     Improve cooperation and understanding between police and their community

 

 

This proposal is designed to be aligned with community needs, build upon community strengths, and used best practices to reduce community violence and serve as a targeted intervention for youth 14-17 in the neighborhoods most impacted by violence and their families.

Additionally, this proposal’s takes elements of a successful proven community building/engagement strategy that has been used before and builds and expands on that to further address community needs.

 

A.     The I Am Your Neighbor Program is designed to address needs 5 targeted neighborhoods.  This proposal will allow us to host 5 events during the targeted period and each event will host between 40-60 individuals and families will be heavily targeted for attendance.  These Community Conversations will feature brief presentations by Indianapolis’s own African -American former Police Chiefs, Rick Hite Former Chief of IMPD, Lloyd Crowe Former Assistant Chief IMPD, Bill Benjamin Former Deputy Chief IMPD, and Daryl Pearce Former Assistant Chief IMPD teach/coaching crisis intervention, police and community relations, and what every child needs to succeed based upon proven success they have had in their careers and they understand the needs and concerns of the community. Followed by facilitated table top discussions and community level action planning/discussion about strategies to improve police and community relations, mobilizing the community, and identifying strategies to improve police and community collaboration.  Each session will conclude with action plans. strategies, time tables and identified point persons to ensure those strategies will be executed.  

 

Because we want to ensure that all voices, especially youth voices are heard. Interested youth and young adults will be able to meet separately and with a facilitator and there will be opportunities for the products they create during those breakout sessions to be shared during the transition periods and the report out time. 

 

We will work with our community partners to identify specific locations to host these community conversations.  Some potential locations might be: congregations, community/neighborhood centers, and social service organizations.

 

The second strategy is “BIG Dreams”

Big Dreams is an 8-week targeted intervention program for youth 14-17 who have engaged in violence or at risk for being engaged in a violent conflict. 4 sessions will be  held during the grant period and 40 youth will receive intensive service and supports that are designed to interrupt the cycle of violence and build protective factors. The intervention will teach them critical decision making and conflict resolution skills, restore hope and prepare them for employment. Under the guise of workforce development program the intervention will build assets and scaffold supports to support their success. The program will be anchored in a curriculum’ Big Dreams will use the “Bring You’re a Game” Curriculum which is developed by the Center for Work Ethic Development and has been successfully implemented throughout the country but intensively so in Baltimore successful.  The curriculum is comprehensive, tangible, interactive and uses multiple modalities which makes it culturally response. 

Although participants will be guided through the curriculum to learn the soft skills needed to be successful – a relevant topic for the targeted population. Data shows that the participants will also need conflict resolution and decision making skills with scaffolded supports to help them be successful.

Participants can self-refer to the program we will also solicit referrals from probation and court serves, community service groups and social service providers.

•  Each group will be comprised of 8-12 participants. 

•  Everyone will complete a screening – CASEY life skills and 

•  Plans will be developed with input from the youth, parents, and service providers   

   using an wraparound approach. If students are in school the plans will be shared with 

   schools/providers

•  There will be at least monthly parent activities

•  Participants will be assigned a mentor who is aligned with their professional and/or personal goals and interest who will work with them for at least 6 months after the completion of the group. (these mentors will be from the for profit, not for profit, political, community and/or athletic communities.

Bring You’re a Game by has been successfully used features x and culturally relevant and contemporary teach ‘soft skills’  which are core stills that youth need to be successful at school and at work. The skills that will be taught are: Appreciation, Attitude, Attendance, Appearance, Ambition, Accountability and Acceptance. Our implementation will be unique because the curriculum will utilize local leaders and resources to ‘tell their stories’ reinforce skills. Local business leaders, athletes, non-profit, community, political, and leaders in the faith community will provide ‘real world examples’ 

This approach will help not only teach content but hopefully inspire self- efficacy, provide them strong positive and tangible role models who will help them navigate to success, the environment and approach is designed to encourage a future orientation, and immerse them in a village of support.  Mentors will be available to support a youth for at least 6 months’ post completion of their involvement in the program.  We be recruiting mentors from our established network of benefactors and volunteers from organizations such as:  Charles Schwab, IMPD, the Sheriff’s department, the Athletic community, and local leaders.

As an ancillary support to the youth parent engagement/educational activities will be offered at least once a month.  Parents will be surveyed and topics

-        Some of the topics we can guarantee will be covered will be conflict resolution

-        Parenting and disciplining your teen – effective non-violent strategies

-        Trauma and trauma informed parenting

-        And financial literacy and 

Will with adhere to a CQI process and each group of participants will provide input that will be used to shape and improve the program. Participant input will be encouraged. Each meeting will include ample opportunity for youth participants to have voice and demonstrate their leadership skills and competencies.

 

Evaluation Measures:

Community Conversations

1.     Participants will be asked to complete a brief KAP upon entering the presentation and then complete a brief knowledge, attitude and behavior surveys measuring if the ‘conversations help change their perceptions of law enforcement, their attitudes and/or their behaviors.

2.     We will also gather contact information from program participants that will allow us to follow up with them to conduct brief follow up 

a.     We want participants to leave with a more positive view of law enforcement and to leave with improved ideas that law enforcement can be helpful and that they can partner with law enforcement –  this would be a change in attitude

b.     We want participants to leave saying that they would either be willing to/ or would strong consider reaching out to law enforcement if they saw a potential problem in their community/ or if they witnessed a crime 

We also want participants to invite at least one person to the next event and share the information received with peers– change in behaviors

c.     Participants will leave being able to identify key numbers and points of contacts for reporting crime, reporting any concerns about police conduct/interactions, and or strategies to get help or support.

 

3.     Individuals who complete the in the 8 – Big Dream Program will be evaluated in several ways. 

a.     85% of participants who enter the program will complete the program. Completion will be defined as completing all 8 week sessions. (they do not have to complete them consecutively.)

b.     Wraparound plan goals – using the Casey Life Skills and the Bring You’re A Game work ready skills assessment will provide individualized benchmarks and goals.  90% of those who complete the program will demonstrate significant improvement in work ready skills, competencies and a better understanding of what it takes to succeed at work. 

c.     Participants will also complete a KAB survey as a pre-post evaluation measure. Participants who complete the 8-week program and will report improvements in the following:

                                                        i.     Attitude Changes – 85% will report having Improved conflict resolution skills & communication skills, see non-violent conflict resolution as a viable option to address conflict, & report having increased belief that they can be employed and will see legal employment as a viable option (believe that they are employable)

                                                      ii.     Behavioral Changes- reduction in violent behaviors, reductions in recidivism, and more engagement with school and with any service providers they may be working with

1.     Knowledge: 90% will report having an increased understanding of the 7 key skills employers expect from their employers, 2 resources that are available to support them at home, school, or in the community to achieve their goal, 1 person they can ‘go to’ when they need support in making key critical decisions, and they will know the basics about resolving conflict (and why it is important to address conflict non-violently)

Youth who participate in the program for at least 6 months will report the following changes: on the their follow up survey:

1.     They will be using non-violent ways of resolving conflict

2.     There will be measurable improvements in grades, school behavior, and school attendance

3.     Increase family engagement and improvements in family community

4.     85% will remain in the program for 6 months or more - those who are actively engaged with their mentor will not recidivate. 

5.     Fewer than 20% of those involved with the juvenile justice will acquire new charges during their involvement with the program

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