Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,000,000)
The Connie Rice Institute for Urban Peace, known as the Urban Peace Institute (UPI), will implement the South Los Angeles Peacemakers: Creating Safety and Reducing Violence initiative with $1,000,000 requested to support BCJI activities in Los Angeles, California. UPI seeks to reduce violence for approximately 51,000 residents residing in the City of Los Angeles’ Watts neighborhood, containing zip codes 90002 and 90059, and bordering Imperial Highway, Alameda Street, and Central Avenue. The target neighborhood is not designated as an Opportunity Zone, Choice or Promise neighborhood and does not receive any federal investments that occur, serve or overlap.
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) will provide timely and ongoing violent crime data necessary to identify concentrated violence hotspots within Watts. UPI will then convene a cross-sector Rapid Response Team to analyze this data and plan the strategic deployment of community violence intervention workers to lower violent crime.
The goals of this initiative include: 1) Violent crime in Watts will be reduced by at least 10%; 2) Residents’ capacity, engagement, and collaboration with law enforcement and comprehensive community safety strategies will increase by 20%; and 3) Trust between community members and the law enforcement will increase by 15%. To reduce violent crime, UPI will train and coordinate six new community-based and hospital-based violence intervention workers who will be managed by the organization’s long-time community violence intervention partners, Chapter T.W.O. and Southern California Crossroads. These new violence interrupters and street outreach workers will prevent crimes and provide wrap-around services to effectively interrupt the transmission of violence in Watts.
UPI will increase residents’ capacity and collaboration with law enforcement by 20%, and trust between community members and law enforcement by 15%, by leveraging its ongoing Leadership Institute and Watts Regional School Safety Collaborative. UPI will increase the number of residents participating in the Leadership Institute and Watts Regional School Safety Collaborative by 33%, expanding from 60 to 80 annual participants, host at least two annual events to support cross-sector trust, and support resident participation in the LAPD’s Community Safety Action Committee meetings. UPI will seek to lower violent crime through the South Los Angeles Peacemakers initiative. A full-time BJCI Project Coordination will be hired upon grant award and managed by UPI. Four leading foundations, Ballmer Group, Weingart Foundation, California Wellness Foundation, and the Ralph M. Parsons Foundation, will support the South Los Angeles Peacemakers initiative with $300,000 in funding.
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