Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $1,988,190)
The Metro Nashville Mayor’s Office of Community Safety plans to launch the Community Safety Enhancement Initiative (CSEI) to address violence prevention and enhance community safety in Metro Nashville. The initiative focuses on priority intervention areas: South Nashville, North Nashville, and Madison.
CSEI aims to strengthen existing evidence-based programs, including Group Violence Intervention (GVI) and the Cure Violence Model. These programs have been implemented in collaboration with John Jay and Cure Violence Global, respectively.
A diverse CVIPI team will be established, consisting of representatives from various stakeholders, including The Village network. The Village is a mayor’s office-funded consortium comprising more than 600 grassroots minority community groups actively promoting community safety.
Credible Messenger Program: The initiative will hire and train three place-based, cross-functional credible messengers. These messengers will serve as mentors and guides to high-risk individuals, bridging the GVI program and violence interruption efforts.
Research and Data Analysis: A staff researcher/data science position will be created in partnership with Vanderbilt University. This position will be responsible for comprehensive data collection, analysis, and research, and independent research will be performed by Vanderbilt University. This partnership will ensure that the CSEI is implemented effectively and that its results are rigorously evaluated.
Operational Support: The grant funding will provide operational support to sustain program coordination, community engagement, resource allocation, and the overall implementation of the CSEI.
The primary focus of the funding is to address the needs of high-risk individuals aged 18–24 who are involved in Group Member Involved (GMI) incidents as victims or perpetrators. By utilizing MNPD violent crime data, social vulnerability indicators, and referrals from violence interrupters and credible messengers, the initiative will target its interventions towards those who are most at risk and in need of support.
Expected outcomes of the CSEI include: reductions in violent crime rates, enhanced support for high-risk individuals, removal of barriers for minority residents, decreased recidivism, and improved program evaluations. Through the collaborative efforts of the CVIPI team, evidence-based strategies, and a strong commitment to racial equity, the Community Safety Enhancement Initiative (CSEI) aims to promote community well-being, reduce violence, and enhance overall safety in Metro Nashville.