President Preckwinkle Announces $10 Million in Grants for Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction in Cook County
The cycle of funding builds on prior investment in the Cook County Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction Grant initiative.
(Cook County, IL) — Today, President Preckwinkle joined the Cook County Justice Advisory Council (JAC) to announce an additional $10 million in grants to community-based service providers as part of the County’s Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction Grant initiative. The initiative was developed as a direct response to the increased levels of gun violence experienced since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This investment represents our ongoing commitment to addressing gun violence at the community level,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle. “These grants will come alongside the significant investments in violence prevention that Cook County and our State and City partners have already made to address the drivers of gun violence and help make our communities safer. This collaborative work is critical to maximize the impact of these investments and plan for the future.”
The $10 million in grants are being awarded by the JAC and represent the final Cook County American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funded grants under the initiative. These awards build on $75 million of grants awarded in the summer of 2022 and an additional $25 million that was awarded in January 2023 through a partnership with the Illinois Department of Human Services, Office of Firearm Violence Prevention. In this funding cycle, 17 grants are being awarded that will support 22 unique organizations that provide an array of violence prevention and reduction services in Chicago and Suburban Cook County. In total, 90 awards have been made representing $110 million in grants to support a network of about 150 organizations across the County.
“This funding will allow the awarded organizations to expand and deepen the critical work they are doing in communities,” said Avik Das, JAC Executive Director. “These organizations are working on the ground, delivering culturally responsive programming that meets the needs of vulnerable and at-risk residents, helping to break cycles of trauma and violence and build safer communities for all. The JAC and Cook County are committed to supporting and building the capacity of the dedicated service providers championing this work.”
The Cook County Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction Grant initiative supports community-driven programming that leverages at least one designated evidence-informed violence prevention strategy including: Prevention and Support Services (youth development, vocational and employment support or mental health services); Street Outreach and Intervention; Case Management; Hospital Based Services; and Victim Services.
"This grant award supports 'You Matter,' our culturally relevant trauma-informed therapeutic support model designed specifically for Black men who have returned to Chicago’s South and West Sides after serving long-term prison sentences,” said Lisa D. Daniels-Executive Director of the Darren B. Easterling Center for Restorative Practices. “'You Matter' addresses the significant harm caused to individuals who have spent long periods of time incarcerated, their families, and their communities. Repairing harm and enabling individuals to successfully reenter protects them from engaging in future acts of violence and allows them to become assets to their communities. This funding will allow us to grow the 'You Matter' model and build capacity of peer organizations to understand and deliver the model."
This cycle of grants will support awarded organizations through November 2024. The JAC is engaged in collaborative planning focused on capacity building for community-based service providers as well exploring models for sustained impact. More information about Cook County’s Gun Violence Prevention and Reduction Grant Initiative is available at www.cookcountyil.gov/JACGrants.