Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,000,000)
Applicant Newark Community Street Team (NCST) is Newark, NJ’s community-based violence reduction initiative. NCST is serving as lead partner for this application, with school partner Newark Opportunity Youth Network (NOYN), a multi-pronged approach to improving outcomes for opportunity youth in our community and across New Jersey. NOYN has served thousands of opportunity youth across the city and state and currently serves approximately 300 young people aged 16-24 through direct programing and/or technical assistance provided to other community-based organizations. As an organization, NOYN sees young people as the greatest untapped resource and believes in their ability to transcend circumstances for themselves, their families, and our community.
Funds awarded under this opportunity will allow NCST to hire and deploy a team of Training and Interventionist Navigators (TIN) in NOYN’s charter school ecosystem to serve opportunity youth ages 16-24 as well as school staff at LEAD. School services provided by TINs and Project Staff hired under this grant will include Mental Health First Aid training, school climate assessment planning as well as activities related to school climate safety and improvement, and in-depth violence prevention and intervention exposure. We will engage in a three-month planning period to finalize details, seek any necessary TTA and set out this program with students and staff. We will use the designated planning period to review our frame to include any then-current changes or indicators, either within NCST, NOYN or the community at large, as well as assess any need for TTA.
TINs will identify the risk using an assessment tool, create a safety plan, refer students to the Trauma Recovery Center if needed and work on known supports such as peer support training, where they can assign a trained peer support student to assist with creating a sense of safety for the students.
NCST has support from our school partner NOYN and our community related to the planning and execution of this project. The TIN aspect of our program is uniquely designed and positioned to adapt to the needs of the NOYN community. Building on the efforts of NOYN school safety processes, NCST will support their overall school safety plan/strategy. NCST will ensure compliance with all state and local regulations and will use these regulations to guide the planning process.