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Research Links

Evaluation of Programs that Work

The Commission has collected websites with valuable information about programs that have been evaluated and are considered best practices.

The Office of Justice Programs has a model programs guide that are recommended to communities. Bureau of Justice has a Center for program evaluation.

Helping America's Youth is a nationwide effort to raise awareness about the challenges facing our youth, particularly at-risk boys, and to motivate caring adults to connect with youth in three key areas: family, school, and community.

Learning Around the Clock:Benefits of Expanded Learning Opportunities for Older Youth (PDF) volunteers) to augment K–12 and community-based funding streams.

The Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence has been reviewing over 600 programs that could prevent violence in our communities. On their site are 12 programs that deep research has been done. for details and specific types of programs that work and where.

Preventing Youth Violence

Youth violence and crime affect a community's economic health, as well as individuals' physical and mental health and well-being. Homicide is the second leading cause of death for youth in our country. In 2011, more than 707,000 young people ages 10-24 were treated in emergency departments for injuries sustained from violence.

Exposure to violence is a pervasive problem that crosses all ages. Each neighborhood and community has unique experiences with violence and different resources available to them. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to preventing youth violence. However, communities can help reduce youth violence by developing a city-wide strategy that combines prevention, intervention, treatment, and re-entry strategies. The National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention is working with communities to design these strategies.

To learn more go to the Find Youth Information site.

Research List

The Commission has updated research for anyone looking for citations of programs that work and initiatives that are important. This list (PDF)has recent reports as of 2011.


  • The California Wellness Foundation Grantee Magazine reports on “Shifting a Paradigm to Save Young Lives.”(PDF) Over the past two decades with $118 million funded, California Wellness Foundation grantees progress in using an approach of public health and safety to show that violence against youth is and can always be preventable. It is a long-term commitment to keep youth safe.
  • The SDSU Journalism and Media Studies reports on a young woman who committs her life to preventing violence overtaking others.JMS Reports (PDF), has information on how survivors of violence cope and help to prevent violence from happening at all and/or ever again. Violence is always preventable.
  • 2009 Commission Workplan

    The Commission has updated its 2009 Workplan (PDF).

    2007 Strategic Action Plan

    The Commission has completed its Strategic Action Plan (PDF). The plan is the Commission's response to the following task:

    Develop a more strategic, coordinated, and collaborative effort between the City, law enforcement agencies, social service providers, and the general public with the objective of significantly curtailing gang involvement, and its negative impact, in the City of San Diego.

    Make recommendations concerning gang prevention, intervention, diversion, and suppression methods; identify local, state, and federal funding sources; and address other gang-related policy matters. (San Diego Municipal Code Article 6, Division 19)

    The Commission Values impacting the Strategic Plan are:

    • All residents have a right to live free from violence.
    • All residents have a right to social, educational and economic opportunities.
    • All communities in the City deserve to thrive; and the Commission opposes any activity that would devalue any community in the City of San Diego.
    • Every community of adults has a responsibility to nurture its young people, so they are equipped to make positive choices to succeed in life and not choose gangs or violence as a lifestyle.
    • All youth deserve to feel safe in this City.

    Strategic Action Plan Addendum A (PDF)

    General Research

    Bulletin Reviews Research on Girls' Delinquency (PDF)
    This Juvenile Justice link covers the issue of girls involved in delinquent behaviors and suggests evidenced-based programs help divert them. The report states:

    U.S. Dept. of Justice: Best Practices to Address Community Gang Problems (PDF)

    Minneapolis’ Blueprint for Action

    The City of Minneapolis' Blueprint to Prevent Youth Violence has the focus on "climate of violence," and a desire to launch a media campaign to alter that climate. The full report is here for your review. Blueprint for Action: Preventing Youth Violence In Minneapolis (PDF)

    Gang Wars

    Gang Wars - The Failure of Enforcement Tactics and the Need for Effective Public Safety Strategies (PDF)
    The Justice Policy Institute just released an important review of what works and what doesn't. Written by Judith Greene and Kevin Pranis read 84-97 for a wrap up of what REALLY works and how.