At a regular meeting last week, South San Francisco City Council renewed a contract for two years with the Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center (PCRC), a San Mateo-based organization that combats conflict and violence throughout the county.
Marco Durazo, PCRC's program manager for violence prevention, said that the organization aims to help residents take ownership of their neighborhood and build positive relationships with law enforcement -- "so that police aren't just for when someone needs to get put in handcuffs, but are a community partner," Durazo said.
"[South San Francisco] is in dire need of service-providing programs that are geared toward youth," he said. "It's in need of something for youth to do after school from 3 to 6 p.m. that’s sustainable and funded."
PCRC has worked in schools in South City, including doing youth development trips to universities with students at South San Francisco High.
In October, PCRC plans to begin an open mic night for young adults in a gym in downtown South City.
In recent years, the Center has helped facilitate monthly meetings of South City's Coalition for Safe Neighborhoods, a community-building organization created in the wake of a triple homicide in South San Francisco in 2010. Aysha Haq, the mother of one of the young men killed, has been an active member of the coalition.
"I'm very encouraged by the progress being made by our Community Coalition on Safe Neighborhoods," said City Councilmember Kevin Mullin who co-chairs the group with Vice Mayor Pedro Gonzalez.
The Coalition for Safe Neighborhoods sponsored the National Night Out event on Aug. 7, which encouraged community members walked together through the Old Town neighborhood.
"We are seeing positive results, particularly in the Old Town neighborhood, but are looking to expand efforts throughout SSF, including Westborough," Mullin said.
At last week's meeting councilmember Karyl Matsumoto requested that PCRC provide more specific updates to the city in order to track results of the partnership.
The contract was approved in an amount not to exceed $70,000.
See the attached PDF for the Coalition for Safe Neighborhoods strategic plan for 2012-2015.
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