Background To Greater Shankill Alternatives

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‘Greater Shankill Alternatives is a Government-accredited,community-based restorative justice programme providing a number of prevention and intervention strategies to tackle antisocial behaviour, community conflict and other community safety issues.

Developed in 1998, Alternatives delivers a range of innovative services in areas most affected by violence and multiple deprivation. Alternatives works with hard to reach, socially isolated and vulnerable sections of the community. Its services include: Intensive Youth Support, Youth Prevention & development, Mediation and Community Support, Conflict Transformation, school based conflict resolution, Restorative Justice/Mediation Training and Development.

Intensive Youth Support – Each site continues to work intensively with young people involved in levels of anti-social behaviour that is harming community life and their families. This model of practice provides a wrap around service for young people and helps address some of the root causes of their actions.

Youth Prevention Programme – each site continues to work with small groups of young people who are deemed ‘at risk’ within the community. The types of programmes being delivered are addressing issues such as interface violence, anger management, self esteem, choices and consequences, parenting issues, sexual health issues, cultural issues and identity issues.

Schools work – programmes continue to be delivered in school providing mediation training and restorative interventions to help young people solve their conflicts in more positive ways. Our schools programme also helps teachers deal with their most challenging pupils by providing more interactive sessions for them and one to one support and mentoring.

Mediation and Victim Support – many victims of anti-social behaviour continue to feel isolated and alone and our victim support programme provides initial contact followed up by ongoing support and visitation.

Community Safety Initiatives and Crime Prevention Initiatives – all sites are involved in the design and delivery of mechanisms that help empower local communities and provide them with a voice in how their communities are organised and run. These models include public meetings, community safety days, liaison groups, community safety networks and residents meetings.