November 10, 2010 — The City of Denver recently received more than $2M in federal grant funding in support of the Gang Reduction Initiative of Denver (GRID).
Denver is one of only four cities nationally to receive funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The grant - Community-Based Violence Prevention Demonstration Program – is available January 1, 2011 thru December 31, 2013 and totals $2,215,787 and was co-authored by representatives from the Department of Safety’s Safe City Office and Denver District Juvenile Probation.
“Receiving this grant reaffirms Denver’s role as a leader in developing innovative and critical programming to reduce gang violence in our community,” said Mayor John Hickenlooper. “The Safe City Office and the Crime Prevention and Control Commission worked collaboratively for four years and with more than 40 organizations - representing federal, state, municipal and community-based agencies - to create this unique program that balances suppression, intervention and prevention in its approach. We will continue to partner throughout implementation, and together will take the next step in reducing gang involvement and keeping our community safe.”
The GRID model is unique in design for violence prevention, incorporating and balancing proven strategies of suppression, intervention and prevention.
Project goals of the GRID include:
- changing community norms regarding violence,
- providing alternatives to violence, and
- increasing awareness of the perceived risks and costs of involvement in violence among high-risk young people.
“Denver’s model is distinctive because of its comprehensive design and balance of suppression, intervention and prevention,” said Safe City Supervisor Patrick Hedrick. “Because we don’t have the level of gang violence that other large cities across the country are experiencing, this funding will allow the GRID team to make an impact faster and more effectively in our community.”
The grant comes with support from a federal evaluator who will assist Denver with technical and planning strategies. While this type of support typically is paid for out of the grant funding and estimates at close to $250,000, Denver is receiving this service for free. “Providing us access to federal experts again reaffirms our belief in the design of GRID and we look forward to working with the federal evaluator in mapping our structure and strategy for implementation.”
Funding will also allow for the expansion of GRID in three target neighborhoods (Westwood, Five Points and NE Park Hill) as well as support the necessary infrastructure to implement the suppression and intervention strategies.
About Safe City
The Safe City Office (SCO) serves as the youth prevention and intervention arm of the Denver Department of Public Safety. SCO was created in part as a response to Denver's 1993 Summer of Violence to help combat youth violence and has become an integral part of Denver's public safety plan. SCO partners with non-profit, community-based, private, business and government organizations to serve nearly 4,000 youth and families each year.