A five-year project to improve the lives of youth in Denver’s Montbello neighborhood will kick off Feb. 16-17 with public meetings on the Evie Garrett Dennis Campus.
Community members and key leaders will gather in the community room at 4800 Telluride St. in Denver to discuss efforts to reduce youth violence to be led by the University of Colorado Boulder’s Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence. The public is invited to attend.
Two boards will be launched at the meeting. The Key Leader Board, consisting of influential community leaders, will convene on Feb. 16 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The Community Board, a coalition of community stakeholders, will also attend the meeting with the Key Leader Board from 8:30 to 12:30 on Feb. 16.
The Community Board will continue to meet the afternoon of Feb. 16 until 4:15 p.m., and on Feb. 17 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Breakfast and lunch will be served both days.
The CU-Boulder center will work closely with the two boards and residents of Montbello to reduce levels of youth violence among those aged 10 to 24. The project aims to reduce rates of serious violent crime and gang-related violence, in addition to rates of drug and alcohol abuse, gang participation, fighting, and bullying or being bullied in schools.
Partnering with CU-Boulder on the project are the Lowry Family Center, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Children’s Hospital Colorado, The Foundation for Educational Excellence, the Denver Crime Control and Prevention Commission, Denver Police Department and the Denver Safe City Office.
The project is funded by a $6.5 million cooperative agreement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The principal investigator on the project is Delbert Elliott, director of the Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence and a nationally recognized expert on juvenile violence and school safety. Dr. Eric Sigel, an associate professor of pediatrics at the CU School of Medicine, and fellowship director of Children’s Hospital Adolescent Medicine Clinic, will serve as a co-investigator.
In addition to reducing juvenile violence, the project will work with the CU School of Medicine to train future youth violence prevention researchers in the areas of behavioral science, public health and adolescent medicine.
In the first year of the project researchers will collect baseline data in the Montbello community and in the comparison neighborhood of Northeast Park Hill. After data collection, the Montbello Community Board will create a community action plan. Montbello has more than 30,000 residents and is located northeast of I-70 and Peoria Street and south of the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge.
The second through fifth years will involve implementing evidence-based programs and strategies chosen by the community board, monitoring the programs’ implementation and evaluating impacts.
The Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence is part of CU-Boulder’s Institute of Behavioral Science. The center provides information on the causes, consequences and prevention of youth violence in addition to conducting research and providing technical assistance.
CDC has designated CU-Boulder’s Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence a National Academic Center for Excellence in Youth Violence Prevention. For more information on the CU-Boulder center visit http://www.colorado.edu/cspv or call 303-492-1032.
Delbert Elliott, CU-Boulder, 303-735-2146
Dr. Eric Sigel, CU School of Medicine, 720-777-6133
Peter Caughey, CU-Boulder media relations, 303-492-4007