Everytown Will Also Provide Strategic Support Including Peer Convening, Capacity-Building Training, Data and Research Access and Support from Everytown’s Volunteer Networks
SACRAMENTO, Calif.— Today, the Everytown Community Safety Fund (CSF), part of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, announced $100,000 in funding for Movement 4 Life in Sacramento to sustain their work and better position them to access federal funding. The grant is part of Everytown Community Safety Fund’s $2.35 million investment in funding to 35 community-based violence intervention organizations. The Everytown Community Safety Fund, a program of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, is the largest national initiative solely dedicated to fueling the life-saving work of community-based violence intervention organizations in cities nationwide.
Movement 4 Life (M4L) seeks to reduce gun violence by targeting high risk youth and young adults by using culturally responsive support services and engaging in communities most impacted by trauma. M4L’s mission is to expose communal fellowship to environmental wellness, physical, spiritual, and mental wellness. Through mentorship, travel, life mapping, life skills, and employment training, they help the population they serve improve their quality of life and prevent community gun violence.
“Movement 4 Life’s innovative approach to gun violence prevention relies on the earned trust and credibility of their “Motivational Mentors”, who leverage their lived experience and training in conflict resolution to prevent shootings and save lives,” said Michael-Sean Spence, managing director of Community Safety Initiatives at Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund and creator of the Everytown Community Safety Fund. “The Everytown Community Safety Fund is proud to award Movement 4 Life a 2023 Support grant to sustain their critical work. With their track record and close partnership with Moms Demand Action, we’re confident our support will fuel their continued efforts to prevent gun violence and build safer communities for all.”
“Movement 4 Life takes bold steps towards healing our community as we combat the gun violence epidemic and I’m grateful that their work is being acknowledged by the Everytown Community Safety Fund,” said California Representative Kevin McCarty. “I’m proud to stand with Movement 4 Life as they provide vital support to those in need. Community violence interrupters are the frontlines of an effective gun violence prevention strategy and they need to be properly resourced.”
“Movement 4 Life (M4L) seeks to reduce gun violence by targeting high-risk youth and young adults in Sacramento who find themselves vulnerable to high risk environments that give birth to high risk behaviors.We attribute these conditions to the rise in cyclical and retaliatory community gun violence that M4L is designed to intervene, interrupt, and prevent, ” said Julius W. Thibodeaux Jr., executive director and co-founder of Movement 4 Life, “This critical grant from the Everytown Community Safety Fund will help us sustain our ongoing programming and expand our efforts to support these individuals.”
“Sacramento, like other cities, is in need of a comprehensive and community-centered approach to gun violence prevention,” said Dr. Shani Buggs, a member of the Everytown Community Safety Fund advisory board and assistant professor at the University of California, Davis Violence Prevention Research Program. “Movement 4 Life implements a promising approach to addressing gun violence, and I strongly believe that investment in their work will have an impact in the city.”
“Movement 4 Life is an extraordinary, life-saving organization, employing a holistic healing approach to our gun violence crisis. Their work is creating a paradigm shift in the way individuals most at risk of being perpetrators or victims of gun violence see themselves and their communities,” said Sharon Genkin, a volunteer with the California chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Julius Thibideaux, the founder of Movement 4 Life, is a close and cherished partner to the California chapter of Moms Demand Action, and it is truly an honor to support his work with this grant.”
As gun violence continues to devastate communities following an exponential increase in recent years, community-based violence intervention (CVI) programs like Movement 4 Life are working tirelessly to sustain their work, working with individuals at the highest risk of shooting or being shot and helping reduce violence through targeted interventions — including street outreach and hospital-based violence intervention — in the country’s most vulnerable communities. These programs are on the frontlines in the cities with the highest gun violence and communities experiencing the disproportionate impact of gun violence. While historic investments have been made at all levels of government, CVI organizations still struggle to access promised funding and when they do, funding is restricted to programmatic expenses, preventing them from increasing staff, building their capacity or scaling to more people and places in need.
Since 2019, the Everytown Community Safety Fund (CSF) has granted $10.6 million in support of 117 community-based violence intervention organizations implementing promising strategies, like street outreach, hospital-based violence interventions and youth development and counseling, in more than 67 American cities. This latest round of first-time support Gsants, currently CSF’s largest grant offering, will provide grant recipients $100,000, in two disbursements over two years, as well as access to CSF’s quarterly calls, peer convenings, capacity-building trainers, national conferences, as well as support from Everytown, and it’s grassroots networks Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, and national partners.
Grantee selection follows a rigorous process administered by Everytown Community Safety Fund staff, as well as Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers and an external review panel of experts from across the country, including the Everytown Community Safety Fund Advisory Board, made up of advocates, academics, survivors and city leaders from diverse backgrounds who recognize the critical role community-based violence intervention organizations serve as a component of a comprehensive approach to reducing gun violence.