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The Foundation’s Youth Violence Prevention Initiative supports programs that reduce youth violence and the risk factors that contribute to it. One of the longest-running and highest-ranked solutions in North America is the Stop Now and Plan (SNAP®) Program.
Developed in the late 70s by the Child Development Institute, the program teaches children ages 6-11 how to use coping skills to avoid trouble and control their behavior. SNAP® helps both children and parents (or guardians) effectively deal with anger by teaching them how to respond in a way that makes their problems seem smaller, not bigger.
SNAP® has proven to be effective with children who exhibit anti-social behaviors such as aggression, defiance, lying, and bullying. Through the program, children and parents build the skills necessary to strengthen family bonds and positively impact behavior in their home, school, and community. With practice, children and parents are able to stop, calm down and generate positive solutions at the “snap of their fingers.”
Boys’ and girls’ therapeutic groups meet weekly, where structured and interactive activities such as role play and games teach them behavioral strategies to use in their daily lives and address topics such as stealing and bullying. Parents’ groups meet concurrently, and family counseling, mentoring, and school advocacy are additional program benefits.
Since 2007, the Roy A. Hunt Foundation has granted $105,000 to implement SNAP® in the Pittsburgh area, providing $75,000 to Auberle and $30,000 to Holy Family Institute. Grants to both organizations have included support for the implementation of SNAP® Girls Connection, which focuses specifically on challenges that young girls face. The Child Development Institute has certified staff members from both organizations to deliver the program and provides ongoing monitoring to ensure the programs are high quality.
Results at Auberle and Holy Family are promising. Outcomes from both SNAP® programs show significant decreases (ranging from 75-87% as shown by the Child Behavior Checklist) in the following areas: