ST. LOUIS - St. Louis County has secured a $4.7 million federal grant from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to fund youth violence prevention and mental health programs.
The five-year grant will be used to fund efforts including providing trauma-related services, violence prevention programs, and peer-to-peer youth programs.
The programs will be focused in the "Promise Zone," located in north St. Louis City and north St. Louis County.
The grant application was supported by many regional partners, including the St. Louis County Executive’s Office, St. Louis regional Promise Zone, Regional Health Commission, the Missouri Department of Mental Health, the St. Louis Health Department, Saint Louis Mental Health Board, the UMSL National Child Traumatic Stress Network, several St. Louis County school districts, Forward through Ferguson, and the Ferguson City Council.
“Public health problems don’t recognize geographical boundaries,” said Dr. Faisal Khan, the director of the St. Louis County Department of Public Health. “This is why St. Louis County is proud to take the lead and work with a wide range of partners in this regional effort to fundamentally address such issues. We will be holding a series of discussions to determine what specific services this grant will support and where those services are needed most.”
Portions of 26 St. Louis Counties and unincorporated north St. Louis County are included in the Promise Zone. Of the 199,792 residents living in the Promise Zone, an estimated 70,886 (36%) are living in poverty.
The project begins on October 1st, and an action plan will be developed within the first six months. Community meetings will begin in January 2017.