Community Watch

A Peacemaking Project by Yeremi R.

What is the injustice we are solving?

We are a Young Man Initiative Mentoring Program located in the South Bronx, which is facing violent crimes, homelessness, miss use of land, & poverty. We are creating a block by block map of the South Bronx, which will lay out where all violence crimes, homelessness, poverty, & miss use of land is occurring. Then our group is going to be presenting this block by block map to community and state Leaders on a monthly bases to better assist them in their everyday decisions that affect our community in the South Bronx. Also better guide these elected leaders of ours to the areas in our community that are in desperate need of public resources. We have already created the first ever starting kit that was presented to the Soundview Cornerstone which has joined us as member of the Community Watch Project. Our website was created by our youth which allows members to give tips of injustices happening & it lets people be able to view the location of the injustices happening. Visit bronxcommunity.watch for more info.

Our Compassionate Solution:

To solve this injustice of Violence, Poverty, Homelessness, & Miss Use of Land
we will address The entire community to come together
by entering information of where the injustices are happening on bronxcommunity.Watch for our group then be able to present the information to Local Police Officer & Leader

Our Project Plan:

Goals

  • Identify the next Bronx district that should receive the next Community Watch starting kit
  • Create a starting kit and present it to the next Bronx district
  • Collect information on the next district's key issues and update our community map
  • Present this information to their communities leaders

We will increase my / our compassion by...

We will increase our compassion by actively trying to make more change happen by more aggressively pursuing resolutions towards the key issues that community members bring to our awareness.

How will you show courage?

We show courage by exposing ourselves to people who might not agree with what we are doing. We are publicly advocating for peace by actually going out into these troubled neighborhoods and trying to make change by speaking to the communities leaders.

How will you collaborate with others?

We will collaborate with others by asking them to contribute to our website and share their ideas on how to improve our project.

How will you know you are moving in the right direction? (What are specific ways you can measure your impact?)

We will know we are moving in the right direction when we start getting feedback from the changes that we have advocated for.

Key Steps

  • Expand into another community and welcoming them into the project as we did with Soundview
  • Collect tips from that community and try to make change by talking to their community leaders

Reflection:

How did the project deepen your team's understanding of the injustice?

Doing the Community Watch project deepened our understanding of the injustice by showing us how many different ways people are affected by issues that we didn't even think of and by how often these injustices were happening around us.

How did your community change as a result of your project?

We were able to make change within the community by letting our community leaders be aware of key issues within it. We have heard from several people in the community stating that they now feel a little bit safer and more confident that they too can make a change and have their voices be heard.

How many people were impacted by your project?

1500

Explain how you came up with the number of people impacted by the project?

We gathered the amount of people living in NYCHA buildings around 1000 Rosedale Avenue which is where most of our numbers come from. We also had about 350 website views as well as about 150 people from word of mouth.

How did your team learn more about the people affected by the injustice?

We learned more about the people affected by injustices from our website. People were able to submit tips to the website which we would then put on the map. While submitting, people had the option to submit their names and a description of what they saw. Through that, people have submitted personal stories of how certain things affect them on a daily basis.

What did your team learn?

As we progressed through the project, our team learned that effective communication is key. Without it, this project would have not been possible. Due to people submitting tips on our website, we were able to accurately pinpoint where injustices were occurring and directing that information to community leaders so that they can be resolved.

What challenges did your team overcome?

One of the challenges that our team overcame was scaling. We needed a way to achieve our goal of being able to support the South Bronx while also keeping in mind that in the future, we would need to scale UP. The way we have set up our website is ideal for the future that we intend on having.

How have you involved others in designing, carrying out, or expanding this project?

We have been working to expand this project by going to other communities and welcoming them to join us by giving them starting kits to start their own Community Watch project, most notably, the Soundview Community.

What advice would you give to someone starting a peacemaking project?

The power the voice youth from all over have has a strength that is explainable. When you want to start a peacemaking project you need to be able to brainstorm multiple times across the process of accomplishing your project goal due to many new ideas & road blocks will arise but that should only make the group & project stronger. Using the Peace First Organization dashboard & tools kits are very helpful on way to brainstorm and plan on how to fight/solve the injustice your community are facing. In addition, the dashboard & toolkit allows you & youths to think outside of the box by asking questions that they may have not thought of.

Our Updates:

Visit Our Website

Yeremi R. 15 February 2018 20:43 Bronxcommunity.Watch

Anyone in the Bronx NY District submit tips of where Violence,Homelessness, Miss Use Of Land, & Poverty is Occurring

NYPD Commissioner

Yeremi R. 23 May 2018 13:21 The NYPD Commissioner James P. O'Neill at the Phipps Neighborhoods Sonia Sotomayor Cornerstone speaking, recognize, & empowering the youth of the Community Watch Project

Community Watch Website Tips

Yeremi R. 23 May 2018 13:26 Tips Of the Community Watch Website that are being receive from Community Members about the injustices of Homelessness, Poverty, Miss Use of Land, & Violence in our community.

Community Watch Unveiling Ceremony

Yeremi R. 23 May 2018 13:38 Community Watch Unveiling Ceremony of our Community Watch Website at Sound-View Cornerstone. In addition, introducing & Unveiling of first ever Community Watch Website Starting Kit.

Youth all across NYC Showcasing Community Projects

Yeremi R. 23 May 2018 16:20 Our Community Watch Youth showcasing their Community Watch Project to all of NYC Youth Advisory Groups. In addition, looking at other projects Youths across NYC are involve in.

Comments:

Dalton B.
6 June 2018 14:13

Hi Community Watch!

Congratulations on finishing your peacemaking project! I’m on the Peace First team and wanted to say thank you for your amazing work and for taking time to share about your work.

Below you will find some feedback based on your Reflection, which we hope will help you to celebrate your incredible accomplishment and reflect on how to grow and develop your project in the future:

What a cool project! I love how you're building something that feels sustainable within the community. I also love that the voices of the community aren't just included in this project - they are ESSENTIAL!

I think as you move forward with your project, I'd love to get some more information on the transformation this work has had on your community and it's leaders. I'd love for you to interview leaders and residents or maybe have a place on your website that allows people to submit feedback like that.

We hope you will stay in touch and keep us up to date as you continue your work to create change!

-Dalton  

Fish S. Peace First Staff
22 February 2018 12:11

Congratulations, Yeremi! Your project has been selected to receive a Peace First Challenge mini-grant. We will be in touch soon with details about this payment.

The mini-grant process is also a space for you to get feedback on your peacemaking project. We hope you will use this feedback to further strengthen your project. Please see the feedback on your mini-grant below

Strengths:
This is an awesome project for so many reasons! The project has a clear understanding of target areas to address, and contains detailed and thoughtful steps that will help you reach your goal. We love that your project remains open to flexibility and collaboration with others so that you can be responsive to the Community's needs. We additionally believe that your strategy of presenting your community map to policy makers will be impactful in two ways - (1) to help policy makers visually see and deeply understand the perspective of the community, and (2) this will add in creating change with longevity. Way to go!


Things to consider (Opportunities to further strengthen the project)
Your project is amazing and we wouldn't change anything about it -- but here are some things we encourage you to think about to help take your project to the next level.

We would love to know more about your strategy for working with legislators - think about how you leverage your community leaders and adults in your network to be your advocates with legislators who are not accustomed to taking policy advice from young people. Which legislators would be good targets, and what asks are you planning to make? How are you measuring your metrics for success? (i.e. how many people you are getting to contribute to your map, how many contributions you have, etc.) We also encourage you to build a strategy to reach out to as many people in your neighborhood as possible -- since the map will be better the more people contribute to it. Finally, it sounds like you're being really intentional about expanding this to another neighborhood -- which is awesome -- and we're wondering about how you'll train and support leaders in this new neighborhood so that they can implement the project as well as you've been able to.

We can help you think through all of these questions - let us know if there are things we'd like to brainstorm about!


Congratulations and best of luck with your project!
 

Fish S. Peace First Staff
16 February 2018 13:24

Had a chance to check out the map -- amazing! Really, really impressed by how this project has soared -- love how easy the map is to use and how the different injustices are categorized with different icons. And it looks like young people are updating the map frequently! How can we help?  

RaulPF C.
16 February 2018 9:09

Hi Yeremi,
It is great to see your team being part of the Peace First Challenge this year too! It has been really good to see some updates on what the team has been up to. I wanted to provide some formal feedback on the compassionate insight that the team has submitted.
The insight submitted help us see what the team is planning to do to continue with this important initiative. One thing that I think could make this next step stronger is if you were able to add a little bit more detail about why the team believes that the community watch website is a good way to address the injustices you have identified. It would also be great if the team worked a bit more through some of the tools to add to hopefully help them increase their understanding of the injustice which we believe helps them implement stronger solutions too.
I look forward to continuing to see this project growing in depth and impact.
Have a great rest of the week!
Raul
 

Yeremi R.
15 February 2018 20:33

Dear Mr. Fish. Phipps Neighborhoods BullDogs applied for the $250 grant again. Our youth wanted to see if you can visit Bronxcommunity.Watch, the website we have created to help us fight the injustice of homelessness, miss use of land, poverty, & violence.  

Fish S. Peace First Staff
2 February 2018 12:40

Sounds great, Yeremi. Let us know how we can be helpful. Happy to offer another $250 mini-grant, as always, and let us know what other support we can offer!  

Yeremi R.
1 February 2018 16:43

Hey Fish S. I am glad Peace First is always willing to help. Our Community Watch Phipps Neighborhoods BullDogs Team are looking for additional funding to expand the coding course & expand the project to another community to be able to fight the injustices occurring in the South Bronx.  

Fish S. Peace First Staff
30 January 2018 14:02

Hi Yeremi! Thanks for entering the team's project in the Challenge again. What can we help with this time around? Let us know how we can be supportive :)