A gang intervention program is aimed at reducing the presence of gangs in the streets of the United States of America and ensuring that the streets are safe for the citizens. There are areas prone to the formation and domination of gangs; hence security services are obliged to concentrate on them. One such program is the Street Intervention Program, an intervention program created in the early 1990s as a response to the increase in violence in the streets of Chicago. The unhealthy soaring of the numbers of gangs in the streets warranted an intervention by the society because of the risk they were posing. It is a program highly recognized globally and has a strong presence in a majority of the at-risk communities of the state (The YMCA).
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The mission of the program is to mediate dispute and promote non-violent solutions to conflicts that arise in the streets. The street Intervention program aims at reaching out to high-risk individuals in the society and reforming their ways in a manner that allows them to stay out of gangs. During the day, SIP meets youth at school, whereas they meet them in street corners during the night. The workers in the intervention program use readily available knowledge and experience to conduct workshops in schools and promote critical thinking amongst the youth. They teach them the art of peaceful conflict resolution and the manner with which to reflect on the reality of the neighborhoods in the inner city (Chaskin, 2010). In as much as the program aims at reforming high-risk youth, it enables teachers, parents and school administrators to identify gang symbols, real gangs and other practices that encourage the spread of the vicious groups.
Their ultimate goal is to increase the self-esteem of the youth and lead them to believe in their ability to make a positive impact in the society. They provide afterschool programs and tutorials aimed at reducing the growth of gangs. The street intervention program not only identifies and reforms the youth vulnerable to joining gangs, but teaches the society to be on the lookout for any new gangs, or individuals prone to joining a gun. In that sense, they directly prevent any further growth. Teaching the society the art of critical thinking, and the moments to assert these skills helps them find peaceful solutions to conflicts, and seeking the help of the street gangs (Chaskin, 2010). Being a threat to the security system of the state, it is vital that the program succeed in ensuring that levels of gang induction reduce, and the existing gangs do not find any social situation in which to thrive.
With each assessment of the progress of the program, it is evident that it is succeeding in its mission. It has introduced a mentorship program for the youth, a factor that reassures the society that its youth has role models. It also keeps them from landing into trouble and street gangs. Mentors instill a sense of belonging to the youth and ensure that the decisions they make are based on peaceful solutions to any problems that they might have. The program has introduced different camps that they use as avenues to reach out to the youth. Camps have the ability to change an individual’s life.
With the youth being surrounded by technology and other aspects of their lives that force them to stay indoors, experiencing the outdoors might be the chance they need to experience in order to understand society (The YMCA). Camps are accord the attendees the opportunity to learn and acquire new skills, understand their peers and understand themselves better. All these are aspects that the youth need in order to be critical thinkers. It is these skills that they learn that contribute to their peaceful conflict resolution and stronger bends amongst the peers.
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