One individual affected by violence is one too many.
Here in the City of Philadelphia, there are many programs that work to reduce violence.
The City cannot reduce violence alone, though. We need the support and the collaboration of people like you. Read on to learn more about our programs, including ways you can get involved.
Support cops helping kids.
The Police Athletic League (PAL) is a youth development organization that helps reduce crime in neighborhoods by offering free educational, athletic, recreational, character-building, and cultural programs to Philadelphia’s youth, ages 6-18, while creating a positive relationship between youth and the Philadelphia Police. You can volunteer, donate, or find other ways to support PAL on their website.
Support youth through the arts.
The Mural Arts Philadelphia Restorative Justice Guild works with youth on probation who are involved with the Youth Violence Reduction Program and the Philadelphia Anti-Drug/Anti-Violence Network. The program provides youth opportunities to work on site with Mural Arts throughout the city, engage with communities, and learn important job skills that will help prepare them for work after they graduate. To support these youth in the Mural Arts Philadelphia Restorative Justice Guild, please contact Will Cooper-Balis at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or employment opportunities for the youth who will graduate. You can also make a donation to Mural Arts, which supports this program.
Take a stand against gun violence and make your voice heard.
CeaseFirePA is a statewide organization that works with leaders and people like you to take a stand against gun violence. Through outreach, education, and advocacy, CeaseFirePA works to reduce gun violence. You can find many ways to get involved, from volunteering to attending community meetings to donating on their site.
Refer a young adult (18-26) looking for employment to PowerCorpsPHL, a work experience, and service program.
PowerCorpsPHL offers work experience through service. It is an AmeriCorps program designed to support the City of Philadelphia’s environmental stewardship initiatives, youth violence prevention and workforce development priorities. Do you know a young adult, 18-26 with a high school diploma or GED who might be interested? Refer them to PowerCorpsPHL during one of their open application periods. You can also learn more about the PowerCorpsPHL program or hire a PowerCorpsPHL member.
Help support victims of violence.
Healing Hurt People (HHP) works to help people 8-30 who have been the victims of violence and are seeking hospital treatment. HHP connects victims to behavioral health, physical health, or life skills resources. By making those connections, HHP hopes to help young people heal from trauma and break the cycle of violence. Hear stories from those who were helped and donate to Healing Hurt People.
Become an acute trauma responder.
Network of Neighbors Responding to Violence (NNRV) is a program under the City’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual Disability Services (DBHIDS). NNRV is a neighbor-driven network of Philadelphians who are called on to support communities after violent traumatic incidents. Network members, also known as Acute Trauma Responders, are trained in a community-based trauma intervention model, which taps into social connections to foster healthy coping. These supportive interventions are meant to decrease stress experienced after violence, to increase social cohesion, and to bolster individual and community functioning. Responders are trained in post-traumatic stress disorder management (PTSM). For more information about NNRV, or to become an Acute Trauma Responder, visit the network’s website; please email email@example.com.
Promote safety and support quality of life in your neighborhood.
Town Watch Integrated Services (TWIS) trains, organizes, and provides equipment to residents who want to be a part of Town Watch groups in their community. Town Watch volunteers help improve the quality of life in their neighborhood. Learn more about Town Watch or sign up to volunteer in your neighborhood.
Join your neighborhood connection to the Police Department.
Police Service Areas (PSAs) are part of neighborhood policing, a strategy that focuses on community engagement and increasing the quality of life for all Philadelphians. The area that forms a PSA is based off of the city’s 21 police districts. Each of these districts is then broken up into two to four smaller geographical subdivisions, the PSAs. Resources like PSAs help to strengthen Philadelphia’s neighborhoods because, together, neighbors and police can share resources and knowledge.
- Find your Police District and Police Service Area: Just enter your address, and you will be lead to an interactive map showing your police district, your PSA, contact information for your PSA’s lieutenant, and a link to your district’s homepage.
- Attend your local PSA meeting: They are held once a month, and schedules are often posted on each district’s website.
- Contact your PSA lieutenant: Start a conversation.
- Learn more about Police Service Areas.
Host a summer job.
By providing a paid summer job for a young person, you’re increasing your company’s capacity while also strengthening our City’s future workforce. In comparison to other cities, many of Philadelphia’s applicants lack the necessary hard and soft skills to succeed. The summer months also see spikes of violent crime, and summer jobs help keep our young people safe and off the streets. To find out how you can get involved with the WorkReady Philadelphia summer jobs campaign, contact the Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hire a Philadelphia citizen returning from incarceration.
Philadelphians who find themselves incarcerated face an uphill battle when they are released, including the challenge of securing a job. These individuals deserve a second chance. Learn more about the Fair Chance Hiring Initiative, a program which offers a reimbursement for employers who hire returning citizens.
Connect with Community Schools.
The community school model believes that, in order for our children to succeed academically, our schools need to address non-academic factors that are holding them back. And many of our children are falling behind because of the trauma they experience as a result of neighborhood violence. You can reach out to a local community school to find out how you or your employer can strengthen them through volunteering, program sponsorship, or other in-kind support. Join the Mayor’s Office of Education mailing list for future updates.
Make a donation to the Philadelphia Police Foundation.
The Foundation is currently fundraising for a recruitment campaign that will help fill the Philadelphia Police Department’s vacant positions. Making our city safer is a benefit to all, including the business community. To learn more about the Philadelphia Police Foundation and make a donation, visit PhillyPoliceFoundation.org.
Prioritize safety at home with a free gun lock.
Are you a gun owner? The Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office provides free gun locks to anyone upon request. To obtain a free gun lock, visit the Sheriff’s Office in the Land Title Building, 100 South Broad Street, 5th Floor, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can also call the gun lock hotline at 215-686-3572 and leave a message with your name, number, and address and someone from the Sheriff’s Office will contact you. You can learn more about this program from the Sheriff’s Office online.
Learn more about three City collaborations.
The Focused Deterrence program: The Focused Deterrence program is a violence intervention strategy. The Police Department identifies a group of youth who are likely to shoot or get shot. City departments then offer resources, like adult education programs, workforce training or job placement programs, and social services. You can learn more about the Focused Deterrence program here.
The Youth Violence Reduction Partnership (YVRP): The Youth Violence Reduction Partnership (YVRP) aims to reduce the number of homicides by working with young people who most are most likely to kill or be killed by age 25. The program offers frequent home visits, drug treatment, job readiness services, as well as referrals for mental and behavioral health counseling for participants and their parents. The program is a collaborative effort with the Philadelphia’s Offices of Adult and Juvenile Probation, the Philadelphia Police Department, the Office of the District Attorney and Philadelphia Anti-drug/Anti-violence Network (PAAN). You can learn more about the Youth Violence Reduction Partnership (YVRP) program here.
The Philadelphia Anti-drug/Anti-violence Network (PAAN). The Philadelphia Anti-drug/Anti-violence Network (PAAN) works in Philadelphia’s communities to address drug abuse and violence. They offer access to a variety of services, including drug intervention, counseling, education, job readiness, and community service. You can learn more about PAAN here.
Want to know 3 quick actions you can do right now to make a difference?
Support cops helping kids by making a donation to Philly PAL.
Then use this quick form to sign up to volunteer with your local neighborhood Town Watch to help make your community safer.
Bookmark this blog post so you can continue to find ways to help us in our work to build a safer Philadelphia for every neighborhood.