Chicago’s Holistic Healing Approach

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Chicago’s CRED takes a multi-faceted approach to reducing gun violence, one that has been proven to work in other cities.

To create lasting change they work directly with the individuals who are most likely to carry a gun or get shot, and with the communities where gun violence is most concentrated.

Through Street Outreach, Coaching & Counseling, Workforce Development, and Advocacy & Prevention they lift up young men and women, and rally neighborhoods to dramatically rewrite the story of gun violence in Chicago.


Law enforcement and incarceration are not the only answers. Four essential components for reducing gun violence have been identified and designed into the model.

Street Outreach

Engaging directly with men who are most likely to shoot or be shot, focusing on violence interruption, conflict resolution, and proactive peace-building.

For many young men in the West and South sides of Chicago, choosing a life of violence doesn’t feel like a choice at all. It seems like the only option. The Street Outreach team works tirelessly with these young men and their communities to prevent violence and create environments where peace can thrive.

Getting Ahead of the Violence

Coaching & Counseling

These young men often need to heal from lives impacted by gun violence before moving forward; a process that starts with trauma care, counseling, one-on-one coaching, academic and legal support.

For many of the young men in Chicago, CRED is their first, not second chance, because they’ve never before had access to mentors, opportunities, or the support everyone needs to succeed. They welcome men into their program like brothers, and care for them like family.

Time To Heal

Workforce Development

To ease the transition from the streets to the legal economy, CRED facilitates training, internships, and the development of soft skills.


There is tremendous untapped talent in Chicago that has been virtually locked out of the economy for too many years. CRED helps young men explore their talents, develop skills, get real experience, and ultimately find success in the legal economy.

Chicago is hungry for energetic skilled labor. With the right training, these young men can be the workforce of the future.

A Process of Discovery

Advocacy & Prevention

CRED educates city leaders and state-level policymakers on the value of violence prevention programs that create sustainable long-term change.

Transformative peace for all of Chicago requires going beyond working with the young men at the highest risk of violence involvement. CRED is part of a broad-based coalition that approaches violence reduction as a public health crisis and works at the city and state levels to create real, sustainable change.

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