Jersey City releases RFP to dedicate $500k towards new community-based violence prevention program


The City of Jersey City has released a request for proposals (RFP) to dedicate $500,000 towards a new community-based violence prevention program.

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By John Heinis/Hudson County View

The RFP, which was designed in conjunction with Jersey City Together, aims to acknowledge, target, and respond to the uptick in violence resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible organizations can apply for funding to launch this program focusing on helping the City’s youth, adults, and seniors within low- and moderate-income areas as defined by HUD. The RFP is open through February 18th.

“We are committed to driving down crime and violence in our area, and this community-based Violence Prevention Program will leverage our local resources to address the underlying conditions that result in long-term violence,” Mayor Steven Fulop said in a statement.

“With this program, we want to ensure safer, healthier, and equitable communities by providing at-risk residents with the tools to heal from traumatic experiences, while also providing the support and skills to achieve their short- and long-term life goals.”

Fulop first mentioned the program in a New Year’s Eve interview with HCV, saying at the time that the city planned to go out to bid for “violence interruptors” early in 2022.

The new initiative will complement programs implemented in the last year, such as Mental Health First Aid efforts, as part of a comprehensive approach to address domestic violence issues, homeless outreach, violence prevention, and mental health support – all of which have seen stark increases since the onset of COVID-19.

“Jersey City Together fully supports allocating and investing in proven violence prevention strategies for our city,” added Bill Lillis, a member of Jersey City Together’s strategy team.

“Community-based violence reduction models like these use outreach, connecting individuals to social services and other supports to respond to the problems we face, as a proactive approach to prevent violence from occurring.”

The program is shaped by community-based prevention frameworks utilizing intervention methods that are proven effective, including community mobilization efforts, youth outreach, public education, leadership involvement, mentorships, trained credible messengers, social services navigation/support, and life management action plans.

“The program will serve at-risk individuals who experience violence within their community while centering the needs of constituents,” added Community Development Division Director Deja Anderson.

“This directly aligns with our mission ‘to strengthen Jersey City through fostering strong partnerships and responsibly investing our funding resources in the community.'”

The deadline for submitting proposals is Friday, February 18, 2022, at 11:59 pm. Applicants should be proficient in languages found within Jersey City. The RFP application can be accessed through the Jersey City website here.

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