Northwest Side Organization Launches Summer 2016 Gun Violence Prevention Program
The Alliance of Local Service Organizations (ALSO) has begun a three-and-a-half month long violence prevention initiative on the Northwest Side of Chicago, with the support of the Chicago Community Trust. www.cct.org.
The launch marks the reignition of ALSO’s Street Violence Intervention Program, which employs two outreach workers and two violence interrupters to work with disconnected and in-risk youth, ages 16-24, on the Northwest. Disconnected youth are neither working nor in school and in-risk youth have experienced risk factors already resulting in adverse effects, versus at-risk which suggests the potential for future harm. Using a relational approach model, outreach workers and violence interrupters establish and promote positive, trusting relationships with program participants, maintain a physical presence in Northwest side neighborhoods, and prevent and mediate conflicts that can result in shootings or homicides before they escalate.
Until the Chicago Community Trust grant was received in June, the program–aimed at reducing shootings and homicides in Humboldt Park and surrounding communities–had been inactive since the March 2015 Illinois State budget freeze and subsequent impasse. During the program’s inactive period, shootings and firearm homicides in Chicago increased dramatically.
ALSO’s mission is to end violence in the homes and streets of communities nationwide. To learn more about ALSO’s local and national violence prevention and intervention efforts, visit www.also-chicago.org.