Youth Violence Prevention

For more than two decades, California implemented “tough on crime” policies in response to escalating levels of violence that led to severe penalties and high levels of incarceration, especially for youth. Although three out of every four California voters supported investments in violence prevention, the state was spending nineteen times more on youth incarceration and the juvenile justice system than on prevention programs. In 1996, The California Wellness Foundation launched a series of public education campaigns to shift the policy dialogue on youth violence towards prevention. Since then,  arrests, incarceration and homicide rates for California youth have declined dramatically, which many attribute to significant state investments in crime and violence prevention programs.

– Learn how the campaign built broad support, gained widespread media coverage, and successfully secured funding for youth violence prevention programs.



– Check out the campaign’s compelling television and print ads that turned the tide on youth violence prevention investment in California.



  – Browse through the brochures, factsheets, strategy briefs, perspectives, polling data and scorecards that effectively made the case for youth violence prevention funding and programs.



– Read evaluations of the policy and public education program of The California Wellness Foundation’s Youth Violence Prevention Initiative.