This week, Poetic Justice will begin recruitment as part of the Byrne’s Criminal Justice Innovation grant awarded to John Boner Neighborhood Centers, along with co-applicant Shepherd Community Center, in 2018.
The Byrne’s Criminal Justice Innovation grant, as awarded by the US Department of Justice, supports, “the Department’s priority to reduce serious and violent crime, including gun violence; dismantle gang activity; and strengthen local capacity to combat drug abuse.” In particular, the grant awarded to near eastside organizations, John Boner Neighborhood Centers and Shepherd Community, focuses on workforce development and alternative interventions for those who have been previously incarcerated or who are at risk of being incarcerated. Working within a very specific geography, the BCJI grant funds allow these organizations to concentrate community based crime reduction efforts into historic crime hotspots in the area.
Outside of the workforce development efforts that will be conducted through local Centers for Working Families (CWFs), the alternative interventions will include the Poetic Justice program. Poetic Justice will be a 15-week program that provides creative writing and community arts training to generate peace, foster joy, and reduce violence. During Poetic Justice, participants will practice writing, develop creative responses to community challenges, expand ways of discovering abundance, and generate social change. Participants will also receive certificates in asset-based community development and complete the program as published authors and artists. At the end of the program, Poetic Justice artists will host a community arts event and will receive support for their own community arts project. Participants will meet once a week for 15 weeks. Sessions will last approximately 90 minutes. We will provide bus passes to meeting locations. Food and beverages will also be provided during each session.
This program will be facilitated by Marian professor, Mark Latta, and will launch later this Spring.
To apply to Poetic Justice, click here.
To contact Mark Latta: firstname.lastname@example.org