Spreading Knowledge #1: Something Is Wrong…

A few weeks ago, NIA intern & volunteer Eva Nagao began a project to track the impact and the reach of the curricula that we’ve developed over the years. A major component of our work at Project NIA is to educate our community and others about issues related to violence, juvenile justice, and the prison industrial complex. Although we have a wonderful group of committed and dedicated volunteers, we only have one staff person. Given our limited capacity, we have found that documenting and sharing our practices and ideas is the best way to influence and reach as many people as possible.

Right after Fenger high school student Derrion Albert was killed in the of fall 2009, NIA founder & director Mariame Kaba looked for a way to support adults who were working with young people to identify and understand the root causes of violence. She reached out to allies at the Chicago Freedom School and Teachers for Social Justice. Together, they partnered to edit and release a 350-page curriculum guide called “Something is Wrong: Exploring the Roots of Violence in the Lives of Youth.” This was accomplished (in record time) without any funding support and everyone involved donated their time & skills.

Since its February 2010 release, Something is Wrong has been downloaded (for FREE) at least 1250 times (that we can document) and over 250 hard copies of the guide have been sold. Over 600 individuals who downloaded the guide completed our online survey and we are excited to share some of the results. Special thanks to Eva for compiling this data.

250 survey respondents primarily work with high school aged youth.
88% of survey respondents are using the curriculum with African-Americans.
69% of survey respondents are using the curriculum with Latinos
39% of survey respondents are using the curriculum with LGBTQ individuals.

61% of survey respondents are using the curriculum with young men.
64% of survey respondents are using the curriculum with young women.

According to survey respondents, Something is Wrong has been downloaded in all but 4 states.

You can read the full report (which was beautifully designed by Eva) by clicking here. You’ll be able to learn about specific organizations that have downloaded the guide.

Next week, we will feature data about the impact and reach of our Giving Name to the Nameless guide.

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