Children out in Community

DOJ Office of Justice Programs awards Cleveland $2 million for community violence intervention work


Oct. 5, 2022 — Cleveland — Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice awarded Cleveland a $2 million grant under the Community Violence Intervention and Prevention Initiative (CVIPI). 
The grant will support city-led collaborative community violence intervention (CVI) planning and strategies administered through the mayor’s Office of Prevention, Intervention, and Opportunity in partnership with non-profits, and community-based organizations in Cleveland. 

“This grant supports the important work of stopping violence before it starts through intervention, prevention, and public engagement,” said Mayor Justin M. Bibb. “We are extremely grateful to the Department of Justice for this grant and for the support we have received from U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown, Congresswoman Shontel Brown, First Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio Michelle Baeppler, and from our many state and local partners.” 

Work on a blueprint for violence prevention in Cleveland is underway, as is coordination of CVI programs and practitioners to set violence-reduction goals, ensure alignment, and measure progress.  

A community wide CVI long-term plan, Cleveland Thrive, will be developed together with current ongoing efforts focused on neighborhoods with higher incidence of violence to provide immediate relief in communities while exploring initiatives to meet the community’s changing needs.  

“We were able to quickly assemble partners to pursue this opportunity and had more than 30 letters of support for the grant application,” said Cleveland's Chief of Youth and Family Success Sonya Pryor-Jones. “To make real progress on violence prevention we must all work together on the immediate needs and long-term strategies. This is a significant opportunity, I am deeply grateful to everyone involved, and hope this will catalyze the cross-sector coordination and integration necessary to address violence.” 

This award, funded in part through the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, is part of a historic $100 million investment in community violence intervention programs from the Department of Justice, jointly administered by OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and Office for Victims of Crime.  

“We have an obligation to our communities to help them prevent violence and other crime,” said Senator Sherrod Brown. “This will allow Cleveland to expand its crime intervention and prevention efforts and work with community organizations and law enforcement agencies to keep our neighborhoods safe.” 

Grants under this initiative are intended for the development and expansion of the infrastructure needed to build community safety and strengthen neighborhoods. CVIPI grants will support holistic, cross-agency collaborations, seed new efforts and fund expansion plans in both community-based organizations and local government agencies, provide funding and assistance through intermediaries to build the capacity of smaller organizations, offer technical aid to jurisdictions that do not receive federal funding and invest in research and evaluation to better understand what works to reduce violence. 

OJP’s National Institute of Justice will also support evaluations of projects funded under this initiative, contributing to the growing body of evidence regarding the effectiveness of violence intervention strategies.