This manual describes the principles and steps involved in organizing a local neighborhood to confront the youth gang problem.
It focuses on the role of the neighborhood organizer, organizer trainer, and local community leaders in mobilizing energies, resources, and action by parents, local citizens, neighborhood groups, agencies, and concerned officials at the grassroots level. An assessment must first be conducted to develop knowledge of the scope and seriousness of the problem and determine what needs to be done about it. Reliable and valid data must be collected from an assortment of local citizens and agency representatives. A special structure to address the identified problems should then be established. The organizer should build the organization and assist its members to act effectively. Goals, objectives, and strategies appropriate to the neighborhood context must be developed. As local citizens collaborate with the police, schools, community-based youth agencies, and other organizations, various program activities may be designed and implemented, including citizen antigang patrols, court watch groups, parent support groups, tutoring, recreational projects, and the monitoring of organization funded to deal with the problem. Priority must be given to funding interagency or collaborative programs. Although sophisticated evaluation of the efforts of neighborhood organizations to combat gang crime may not always be feasible, there should be an evaluation of the extent to which local citizens and organizations cooperate to address the problem of youth gangs. 6-item bibliography, glossary and discussion of terms, and 3 tables
Date Published: January 1, 1992