The Near Westside Peacemaking Project

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Setting up the office and getting projects going has taken its toll so I haven’t been able to blog as much as I would like. However it’s a good sign as seeds that were planted in winter are starting to emerge. It looks like my fall is becoming spring.

To explain, in February of this year I was approached by the Center for Court Innovation’s Tribal Justice Division to see if I would like to partner with them in applying for a Bryne Justice Innovation Grant. The goals of this federal grant are to fund projects that plan, implement, and enhance place-based, community-oriented strategies to address neighborhood-level crime issues as a part of broader neighborhood revitalization.  The executive director of CCI ‘s Tribal Justice Division, Aaron Arnold , wanted to pilot efforts his organization had been making in bringing Native American peacemaking practices into the traditional justice system and this grant seemed perfect. Aaron and I had also been in contact for a couple of years prior around the importance of making space for peacemaking and restorative practices so I was ecstatic when part of his vision included creating not only a peace making program in Syracuse’s Near West side neighborhood but a designated space or even building for this program. It would be the first of its kind and we would be working with the UPSTATE initiative through Syracuse University to create a prototype I had been dreaming of for a long time.

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I am posting today to say that two weeks ago we received notice that we were 1 of 10 recipients of this year’s Byrne Justice Innovation Grant.  I will fly out next week to meet Aaron( face to face for the first time), our community partners and UPSTATE to construct a project delivery method that may include a design build studio with Syracuse University’s  amazing architecture school.  If we are successful, and I think we will be, this will be holistic model that can be implemented in communities across the country.

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The courage and innovation it takes to bring something like this together is inspiring and the fact that our federal government would fund it gives me hope that we are turning the tide in reducing the harmful impacts of our prison industrial system.

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3 thoughts on “The Near Westside Peacemaking Project

  1. Congratulations! sujatha sujatha baliga | Director | Restorative Justice Project National Council on Crime and Delinquency 1970 Broadway, Suite 500, Oakland, CA 94612 800-306-6223 x2111 (O) | 510-874-5529 (O/M) sbaliga@nccdglobal.org http://www.nccdglobal.org

    NCCD promotes just and equitable social systems for individuals, families, and communities through research, public policy, and practice.

    From: design bridger <comment-reply@wordpress.com> Reply-To: design bridger <comment+_wok3loaz7eq6c8yd-6stu@comment.wordpress.com> Date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 3:49 PM To: sujatha baliga <sbaliga@nccdglobal.org> Subject: [New post] The Near Westside Peacemaking Project

    FOURM design studio posted: ” Setting up the office and getting projects going has taken its toll so I havent been able to blog as much as I would like. However its a good sign as seeds that were planted in winter are starting to emerge. It looks like my fall is becoming spr”

  2. Ps remind me to share with you the amazing graphic my friend made to explain some fundamental flaws with the IIRP model when you get back. Warmly, sujatha sujatha baliga | Director | Restorative Justice Project National Council on Crime and Delinquency 1970 Broadway, Suite 500, Oakland, CA 94612 800-306-6223 x2111 (O) | 510-874-5529 (O/M) sbaliga@nccdglobal.org http://www.nccdglobal.org

    NCCD promotes just and equitable social systems for individuals, families, and communities through research, public policy, and practice.

    From: design bridger <comment-reply@wordpress.com> Reply-To: design bridger <comment+_wok3loaz7eq6c8yd-6stu@comment.wordpress.com> Date: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 3:49 PM To: sujatha baliga <sbaliga@nccdglobal.org> Subject: [New post] The Near Westside Peacemaking Project

    FOURM design studio posted: ” Setting up the office and getting projects going has taken its toll so I havent been able to blog as much as I would like. However its a good sign as seeds that were planted in winter are starting to emerge. It looks like my fall is becoming spr”

    • I would love to see that Sujatha! Hopefully you were also able to get him/her to create the graphic you needed to explain restorative practices. I have not forgotten that from our lunch and think that graphic design/envisioning information is important to communicate all these things.

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