Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2006, $31,889)
The Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) program is a life-skills competency program designed to provide students with the skills they need to avoid gang pressure and youth violence. G.R.E.A.T.'s violence prevention curriculum helps students develop values and practice behaviors that will assist them to avoid destructive activities. The G.R.E.A.T. program coordinates with federal, regional, state and local agencies, as well as individuals from community and civic groups. The goal of the G.R.E.A.T. program is to train law enforcement officers in a school-based curriculum in which the officers provide instruction to school-aged children in life skill competencies, gang awareness, and anti-violence techniques. Training in the core G.R.E.A.T. program is provided to officers from any state or local law enforcement agency.
The Grand Island Police Department has participated in and has been committed to the G.R.E.A.T. Program since 1998. The Grand Island Police Department will use FY 2006 G.R.E.A.T. funds to continue teaching this curriculum to middle school students and conducting Summer Youth programs. The G.R.E.A.T. program has taught skills such as good decision making, anger management, conflict resolution, communication, and how to deal with angry individuals. An increase in gang activity in the community was recognized during the 1990s. The G.R.E.A.T. program has encouraged students to make good choices and aids in changing classroom behavior. Teachers are able to focus on teaching rather than dealing with disruptive behavior in the classroom and the students have a lower level of fear, which enhances the learning environment.