Teny Gross, executive director of Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence, is the keynote speaker for the 2012 Enough is Enough week at University of the Pacific.
Anti-Violence Takes Center Stage During “Enough is Enough” WeekPacific will host seminars to educate students about violence
In Providence, R.I. 30 homicides were reported in the year 2000. Between then and 2011, the homicide rate was cut by more than half, even though the city's police department was functioning in the same manner.
So what made the difference? Officials credit much of the work to Teny Gross, the executive director of Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence.
The Institute resides in an area in Providence where there are 40 gangs and more than 1,600 active gang members. When Gross took over the center in 2001, he was given the mission of teaching non-violence and educating the community about the need for creating a healthier society with less violent crimes, as an attempt to address the city's gang activity.
It worked. Gross, who is a former Israeli Army sergeant, understands what it is like to be a victim of violence and how to advocate for the prevention of it. Through the tools available at the Institute, Gross is able to give back to the community teaching gang members how to be productive citizens, and allowing the next generation to see past gang life.
The first initiative Gross created was the Streetworkers Program, which is credited with reducing street violence. In the program, individuals act as advocates and mentors for those affected by violence. The program's participants are rehabilitated gang members who have a desire in seeing at-risk youth rise above the challenges of society. The members of the Streetworkers program are able to gather information and respond to emergency situations where they can counsel victims' families about dealing with violence. This, in turn, has reduced the amount of revenge crimes, causing an overall decrease in violence.
Gross will speak about his work within Providence's gangs and his efforts to prevent violence during University of the Pacific's 2012 "Enough is Enough" week.
"Enough is Enough" is a NASPA program designed to reduce societal violence. It was started in response to the Virginia Tech shootings and is aimed at combining the resources of colleges and universities, K-12 schools and various community agencies. NASPA is the largest national organization for those who work in student affairs administration.
Along with Gross, others will share their perspective on how society can reduce violence. Colin Goddard, a Virginia Tech survivor, will speak to Pacific via Spreecast (similar to Skype) about sensible gun laws and the necessity for gun retailers to enforce laws when selling weapons.
After the Virginia Tech shooting, Goddard became involved with the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. Through this organization, Goddard created a documentary "Living for 32" capturing footage of how easy it is to purchase a gun if one has the ability to pay for it, eliminating the need for identification or a 'Brady Background Check.'
Sexual violence also will be discussed during the week. "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes" is a march to stop rape, sexual assault, and gender violence that will be held along the Miracle Mile in Stockton.
"Enough is Enough" is a dynamic event that brings anti-violence to the forefront of people's minds," said Steve Jacobson, associate vice president for Housing and Greek Life. "The education and tools that are available during this event allow students an opportunity to hear how to prevent violence and add to the conversation about how to assist with these issues in their community."
"Enough is Enough" week begins April 16th and runs through April 21st.
For more information about "Enough is Enough" visit, http://www.naspa.org/enough/default2.cfm.
For a more information about Teny Gross and the Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence, visit http://www.nonviolenceinstitute.org/.
For more information about Colin Goddard,visit http://livingfor32.com/.
For more information about "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes," visit http://www.walkamileinhershoes.org/.
Monday, April 16, 2012
Take Back the Night March (DUC Lobby/All Campus) 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
The Choice is Yours/Love You to Death Presentation (Grace Covell Banquet Hall) 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Children Services Coordinating Commission Symposium (DUC Ballroom) All Day
Anti Hate Speech Workshop (Multicultural Center) Noon - 1:00 p.m.
"Living with 32" Documentary with Colin Goddard (Janet Leigh Theatre) 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Self Defense Class with Public Safety (time to be announced)
Let's Talk about Healthy Relationships (Multicultural Center) 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.
The Anatomy of Hate: A Dialogue of Hope (Janet Leigh Theatre) 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Safe Zone (Multicultural Center) 5:00 - 6:00 p.m.
Enough is Enough Hero's Reception with Keynote Speaker Teny Gross (Grace Covell Banquet Hall) 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Friday, April 20, 2012
Boys and Men of Color Symposium (Raymond Great Hall) All Day
Elder Abuse Prevention Workshop (Public Safety Conference Room) 10:00 a.m. - Noon
Feel Good Friday (DUC Fire pit) Noon - 1:00 p.m.
Saturday, April 21, 2012
Walk a Mile in Her Shoes (Miracle Mile) 9:30 a.m. - Noon