Promoting Peace Through Professional Outreach

The Metropolitan Peace Academy, the first of its kind in Chicago, is a multidisciplinary training platform designed to professionalize street outreach. Participants complete a rigorous 144-hour, 18-week curriculum focused on street outreach, nonviolence, trauma-informed services and restorative justice. The Peace Academy’s inaugural class graduated in June 2018.

The Peace Academy is part of Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P). Organized by Metropolitan Family Services, CP4P is a collective led by eight of Chicago’s top street outreach organizations working to provide a comprehensive, long-term approach to reducing violence and gang activity in Chicago. Organizations include the Institute for Nonviolence Chicago (INVC), Precious Blood, Target Area Development Corp., Cure Violence, Breakthrough Urban Ministries, the Alliance of Local Service Organizations (ALSO), New Life Centers and UCAN.

Recent news coverage of the Metropolitan Peace Academy:

Metropolitan Peace Academy works to reduce Chicago Violence
On ABC 7’s Windy City Live, Communities Partnering 4 Peace Program Director Vaughn Bryant discusses the Metropolitan Peace Academy’s work in bringing together street outreach workers to professionalize the field, alongside Peace Academy graduate Chris Patterson of the Institute for Nonviolence Chicago, who shares how his experience with incarceration led to his current work in violence prevention.

A New ‘Peace Academy’ Is Teaching Violence Prevention Workers How To Stop The Shootings
Block Club Chicago’s Lee Edwards explores the Metropolitan Peace Academy – and its role in reducing community violence – through one of its graduates, Rodney Phillips of Target Area Development Corp. in Englewood. Dr. Troy Harden, lead curriculum developer for the Peace Academy, and Ric Estrada, CEO at Metropolitan Family Services, speak to the Peace Academy’s methods and its role in Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P).

Why Chicago’s violence interrupters need their own training academy
Communities Partnering 4 Peace (CP4P) Program Director Vaughn Bryant and Institute for Nonviolence Chicago Program Manager Chris Patterson discuss the need for and importance of the Metropolitan Peace Academy for the Crain’s Chicago Business/PSPC “Building Peace” series on approaches to reducing violence in the city; the Peace Academy engages violence prevention workers in a training program designed to professionalize the field of street outreach.


This story is about the Street Outreach, Support Services and Jobs strategy of the Partnership for Safe and Peaceful Communities.