BUILDING THE CIVILIAN ARCHITECTURE
Chicago has the people, tools, and resources to eliminate gun violence, but success requires us to work together in a new way. We are actively building a Civilian Architecture to align and focus resources and accelerate change.
A single organization cannot solve gun violence in Chicago. The Institute for Nonviolence Chicago is at the forefront of co-creating innovative approaches to create peace. One approach is the creation of the Civilian Architecture – an unprecedented collaboration and partnership that includes over 30 CVI organizations, a philanthropic coalition, the business community, along with city, county, and state representatives building a data-informed and coordinated network of violence reduction efforts.
“Achieving the vision to live in a city free of violence requires that we collaborate across organizations, communities and sectors. Communities Partnering 4 Peace continues to demonstrate that we are stronger together and thanks the Institute for Nonviolence Chicago for its leadership and advocacy for our partnership."
Vaughn Bryant, Executive Director of Metropolitan Peace Initiatives
Anchored in professionals with lived experiences and trained in community violence intervention, the Civilian Architecture guides trusting relationships with social service providers, government agencies and law enforcement. This enables civilians to address issues with solution-based treatments rather than punitive actions.
By building and investing in the Civilian Architecture, communities benefit from a more resilient and consistent support system that prioritizes the needs and aspirations of its residents. Most individuals caught in violent cycles seek alternatives but are stifled by a lack of access to resources, hope, education, and/or employment opportunities. The Civilian Architecture addresses these gaps by fostering caring, instead of transactional, relationships with people who too often feel disconnected or forgotten by existing institutions. This is often most profoundly experienced in how the Civilian Architecture redefines and recalibrates the relationship with law enforcement, allowing for a more just, effective, and impactful method of reducing violence.
Communities Partnering 4 Peace
CP4P is an unprecedented collaboration between leading outreach and restorative justice organizations that are reducing gun violence in Chicago with a comprehensive, evidence-based, trauma-informed approach.
"This is the responsibility we take upon ourselves--to show up next to the police and say 'Civilians are going to be supportive as well. We're going to do our part.'"
Teny Gross, Executive Director