Across the country, community professionals and concerned citizens seek to create environments that foster the healthy development of youth:

  • Residents of Fayette County, Pennsylvania envision a "community where children grow up to be adults who have integrity, who possess necessary skills, who are motivated, and who are resilient."

  • Ten years from now, the community members of Benkelman, Nebraska would like to see their community, "maintaining a zero tolerance for underage drinking and drug use."

  • Citizens of Ingham County, Michigan strive to undertake "a model of violence prevention with an integrated, holistic approach...and a continuum of services that supports families to maintain safe, nurturing homes for children."

  • Richmond, Virginia residents seek to "provide youth with community-based opportunities to be accountable for their behavior and to participate in programs with their families designed to help them acquire social, educational, and workplace competencies."

Since 1994, the Title V Incentive Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention Programs, known as the Community Prevention Grants Program, has helped communities nationwide to make significant strides toward realizing their visions. With this program, the Office of Juvenile justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) provides communities with the framework, tools, and initial funding needed to initiate comprehensive, sustainable strategies that address juvenile delinquency and other adolescent problem behaviors. The program's emphasis on community-wide mobilization and data-driven decision-making promotes effective use of resources and, moreover, increases multidisciplinary ownership for program results and accountability for the well-being of youth.

The Community Prevention Grants Program draws from the best available research regarding juvenile crime and delinquency and translates that research into effective policy and practice. Through training and technical assistance, the program supports communities in conducting rigorous local assessments of the underlying conditions that put children and youth at risk for delinquency and other problem behaviors. communities are empowered to build comprehensive prevention strategies–tailored to thier local needs and resources–that reduce their community's risk factors, while also enhancing the protective factors that provide youth with buffers from the negative consequences of exposure to risk.

Representing a new way of doing business, communities report that implementing this research-based, risk- and protection-focused model is not always easy. Nevertheless, early indications of success show that the hard work is paying off. Over the past 5 years, more than 600 communities across the Nation have conducted communities assessments, developed comprehensive delinquency prevention plans, and received prevention grants. While some communities are just beginning the grant process, others have completed the implementation of their 3-year delinquency prevention plans and are reporting encouraging result in terms of enhanced coordination of youth resources, family strengthening, school performance, and youth behavior. Supported by community-wide commitment and measurable outcomes, many projects have been sustained following their grant periods thorough a variety of State and local funding sources. As such, our initial seed money is creating momentum for the focused, coordinated, and long-term efforts necessary to address juvenile crime and delinquency in a meaningful way.

It is my pleasure to present to you this fifth annual Report to Congress on Title V. The activities and accomplishments of the program, presented in the following pages, hold great promise for moving us toward our shared vision of a Nation in which all of our youth realize their full potential as healthy, law-abiding, and productive citizens.

Shay Bilchik

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

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1998 Report to Congress: Title V Incentive Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention Programs OJJDP Report