OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign up, Login or Learn more

UNITY AND PEACE (UP): SAFER COMMUNITIES PROGRAMME

UP brings peace and prosperity to communities by transitioning youth from crime and violence into social enterprises and entrepreneurship.

Photo of Kellie Magnus

Written by

*Please Upload User Experience Map (as attachment) and any additional insights gathered from Beneficiary Feedback in this field

Please see user experience map and prototype feedback attachments below.

Why does the target community define this problem as urgent and/or a priority? How is the idea leveraging and empowering community assets to help create an environment for success? (1000 characters)

The target community defines the problem as urgent because unemployment contributes to high levels of violence and social dysfunction. Young people who cannot find work are more vulnerable to recruitment by local gangs. The programme was co-designed with community leaders and leverages community assets in four ways: community outreach workers use their local contacts to recruit young people to participate; credible community influencers serve as mentors; local community centres and schools serve as hubs for training and psycho-social support; participants' progress is tracked in each community's Upshot (monitoring and evaluation account) with regular reports provided to community development committees. First person testimonials from young people from the participating communities who are succeeding in their personal and professional lives will also be incorporated to strengthen young people's perceptions of their communities and their chances of success.

How does the idea fit within the larger ecosystem that surrounds it? Urgent needs are usually a symptom of a larger issue that rests within multiple interrelated symptoms - share what you know about the context surrounding the problem you are aiming to solve. (500 characters)

Violence in the communities participating in the Safer Communities Programme stems from multiple, inter-related factors including decades-long hostilities between rival gangs; high levels of poverty; limited and low-quality educational offerings; limited recreational and social services for young people. The Safer Communities Programme is a holistic approach to treating with these issues. Employability is one of the five pillars (sport, education, youth leadership and psycho-social support).

How does the idea affect or change the fundamental nature of the larger ecosystem that surrounds it (as described above) in a new and/or far-reaching way? (500 characters)

Current approaches to dealing with violence and unemployment focus on one strand (education or skills training) that fail to fully meet participants' needs. UP changes the ecosystem by demonstrating the power of collective impact; modeling what partners can accomplish when each focuses on its area of strength while committing to working toward a shared agenda, using shared measurement tools and communicating continuously. FFP intends to support the replication of the model in other communities.

What will be different within the target community as a result of implementing the idea? What is the scope and scale of that difference? How long will it take to see that difference and how will it be sustained beyond BridgeBuilder support? (500 characters)

The programme will decrease youth unemployment and youth violence in participating communities within two years. Targets include 300 youth employed; 60% of participants desisting from crime and violence; 70% demonstrating measurable improvement in self esteem. A model for the collective delivery of violence prevention and employment programming will be codified and shared with stakeholders for sustainability and replication. Six social enterprises will be established and funded. (See attachment)

How has the idea evolved or responded to your user research during the Beneficiary Feedback Phase and any further insights provided if you participated in the Expert Feedback Phase? (1000 characters)

User research has prompted us to place more emphasis on entrepreneurship and to tie employment training options to the social enterprises each community is attempting to develop with the support of the Social Development Commission. (To clarify: the initial design of the programme was done in partnership with community representatives and partners.)

What are the key steps for implementation in the next 1-3 years? (You can attach a timeline or GANTT chart in place of a written plan, if desired.) (1000 characters)

See attached GANTT chart

Describe the individual or team that will implement this idea (if a partnership, please explain breakdown of roles and responsibilities for each entity). (Feel free to share an organizational chart or visual description of your team). (500 characters)

Fight for Peace is coordinating a network of Jamaican NGOs and government agencies in the delivery of the programme. Lead agencies are the Multicare Youth Foundation (YUTE) and the Peace Management Initiative, which are, respectively, leaders in employment training and violence prevention. Other agencies include the Social Development Commission (the govt agency responsible for community development) and the Community Development Committee in each participating community.

What aspects of the idea would potential BridgeBuilder funds primarily support? (500 characters)

Bridgebuilder funds would support the Employment Desk and its programmes including: training for participants; mentor training; hiring of placement and mentorship officers; conducting baseline surveys of job-seekers and applicants; outreach and promotion; and operating costs. Funds will also be used for entrepreneurship support and the development of community-based social enterprises.

In preparation for our Expert Feedback Phase: What are three unanswered questions or challenges that you could use support on in your project? These questions will be answered directly by experts matched specifically to your idea and needs.

1. What are the most effective strategies for driving culture change in communities where formal employment is not the norm?
2. What are the most effective strategies for supporting volunteer organizations to be able to consistently deliver as partners within a network?
3. What are the most effective strategies for motivating corporate partners to prioritise employment opportunities for disadvantaged young people, even if they may need additional support compared to other candidates at first.

Explain your project idea (2,000 characters)

The Safer Communities Programme is a three year initiative aimed at reducing youth violence through 1) a proven methodology that covers boxing and martial arts, education, employability, youth leadership and psycho-social support; 2) a public health approach to violence prevention that includes programmes tailored by risk levels: primary (to deter youth from crime and violence), secondary (to deviate youth at high risk or in contact with the law) and tertiary (to rehabilitate and re-integrate youth with histories of involvement with gang affiliation or incarceration) and 3) a collective impact framework under which a network of expert partners delivers programmes with a shared agenda and theory of change.. The programme runs in six communities in Kingston, Jamaica, affected by high levels of violence.

Employability is one of the five core pillars of the programme, with different programmes targeting youth at different risk levels. The employability programme includes soft skills training for participants of all ages and risk levels. Via an employment desk, youth over 16 will be paired with mentors and gain access to short term and/or full time employment, dependent on their skill levels. Young people will also be supported to develop entrepreneurial projects and will gain access to seed capital. Through a partnership with the government agency responsible for community development, youth will be supported to develop social enterprises, particularly nutrition-based enterprises that will be able to meet the nutrition needs of beneficiaries in the larger programme.

Who are the beneficiaries? (1,000 characters)

Our beneficiaries are young people, age 7 - 29 and their families, living in six communities in Kingston with high levels of violence. The youth targeted for the employment and entrepreneurship programmes are age 16 - 29. In addition to the employment training and placement services, participants will benefit by receiving access to education support, youth leadership training and psycho-social support.

How is your idea unique? (1,000 characters)

Employability is one of five pillars within the Fight for Peace methodology. Beneficiaries also receive access to sport training, education support, youth leadership training and psycho-social support. Other employment and entrepreneurship initiatives working in these communities do not provide an integrated approach. The programme is also being delivered by a network of best-in-class NGOs and community based organizations, through a collective impact approach. In Brazil, FFP has piloted a gang intervention project which helped former gang members to successfully transition into education and employment.

Idea Proposal Stage (choose one)

  • Early Adoption: I have completed a pilot and analyzed the impact of that pilot on the intended users of the idea. I have begun to expand the pilot for early adoption.

Tell us more about your organization/company (1 sentence and website URL)

Fight for Peace uses boxing and martial arts combined with education and personal development to realise the potential of young people in communities affected by crime and violence. Website: www.fightforpeace.net

Expertise in sector

  • 3-5 years

Organization Filing Status

  • Yes, we are a registered non-profit.

In 3-4 sentences, tell us the inspiration or story that encouraged you to start this project.

Fight for Peace has been working in Jamaica for two years. The open access programme now reaches nearly 1,000 participants across six communities. Our work in these communities has made us aware of the urgent need for employment opportunities for young people and income generating opportunities for the communities.

Please explain how your selected topic areas are influenced, in the local context of your project (1,000 characters).

Peace and prosperity are closely linked in the communities in which we work. Young people are recruited into criminal activity because they lack the education and skills to pursue formal employment opportunities. High levels of violence limit the development of sustainable local businesses within the communities. Prosperity is further hindered by the lack of social services.

Who will work alongside your organization in the project idea? (1,000 characters)

Fight for Peace has partnered with five leading agencies to design a three year programme, scheduled to run from 2019-2021. The agencies include the Peace Management Initiative, RISE Life Management, the Joy Town Community Development Foundation, the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Clinic and the Multicare Youth Foundation. Additionally, the UP programme brings together more than 30 partners in the delivery of services to young people. Fight for Peace has been working with these partners for two years, using a collective impact approach. Programmes are jointly designed by partners and delivered collectively by partners under a commitment to a shared agenda, shared theory of change, shared measurement, continuous communication and mutually reinforcing activities. Fight for Peace plays the role of the backbone organization, providing support in coordination, capacity building training and consultation, monitoring evaluation and learning, communication and fundraising.

Please share some of the top strengths identified in the community which your project will serve (500 characters)

Each of our communities has a youth population of greater than 50%.
We have a network of more than 30 local partners (CBOs, government agencies, and NGOs working in youth development, community development and violence prevention) that are committed to jointly deliver the programme.
Two members of our network - the Peace Management Initiative and the MultiCare Youth Foundation - are experts in gang intervention and employability respectively, with more than 2 decades of experience.

Geographic Focus

The UP programme runs in six communities in Kingston, Jamaica with high levels of violence and crime

How many months are required for the project idea? (500 characters)

The project will be implemented over the next three years.

Did you submit this idea to our 2017 BridgeBuilder Challenge? (Y/N)

  • No

22 comments

Join the conversation:

Comment
Photo of Marnie Glazier
Team

Kellie, this is a beautiful idea and your visuals are very strong!

Photo of Kellie Magnus
Team

Thank you so much, Marnie!

Photo of Marnie Glazier
Team

Keep up the great work!

View all comments