This application details a plan to implement a coordinated system of evidence-based violence prevention interventions within a single defined community in Chicago. The community to be served consists of nine census tracts from the Humboldt Park neighborhood of Chicago. This community is approximately 2.3 square miles (1475 acres) and is located on the west side of Chicago approximately 4.5 miles west of the Loop. The community includes a mix of African American and Latino residents. From 2000 census data, there were 37,027 persons living in the target community, 69.9% reported their ethnicity as African-American and 27.5% as Latino. Forty-eight percent live in female headed households and 44% of the neighborhood population reports having less than a high school education. The community is characterized by high rates of crime compared to other communities in Chicago. In 2009, the per capita rate for homicide was 45.1 per 100,000 residents, compared with 15.8 per 100,000 for the City of Chicago as a whole. Rates (per 100,000 ) were similarly elevated for shooting (133.6 vs. 64.6), aggravated assault (299.7 vs. 196.9) and aggravated battery (767.3 vs. 346.0). The comparison community consists of 12 census tracts from the North Lawndale and 4 tracts from the South Lawndale neighborhoods of Chicago. This community is approximately 1.55 square miles (1150 acres) and is located on the west side of Chicago approximately 4.0 miles west of the Loop. The community includes a mix of African American and Latino residents. From 2000 census data, there were 23,593 living in the comparison community, 73.5% were African American and 24.4% were Latino. Similar rates of homicide and violent crime were reported as compared with the Humboldt Park community that is targeted. Evidence-based interventions directed at risk factors at the community/neighborhood, school, relationship and individual levels will be delivered to both a universal and targeted population within the defined community. A sophisticated surveillance system combined with an unprecedented array of administrative data allow for assessment of multiple indicators of impact. Multiple analytic methods are used to evaluate impact. Training activities are coordinated across sites and academic disciplines. To ensure that results reach a larger and more varied audience affected by youth violence, our team will organize a regular series of meetings, policy briefings, and other policy-oriented events that bring together a community of scholars, policymakers, funders, and practitioners seeking to design, field, and rigorously evaluate evidence-based interventions.
The Center is a collaboration of three teams of violence prevention researchers committed to understanding and reducing youth violence within low-income inner-city communities. A coordinated set of activities including surveillance, risk modeling, and implementation and evaluation of a system of evidence-based interventions are outlined and coordinated with the social systems that have the most direct influence on youth at different stages of development - families, schools, community agencies, and justice. The findings from this set of activities will inform our understanding of risk and protection related to youth violence and effective interventions for reducing risk and harm to youth.