Breaking The Cycle of Violence

The Emergency Department Violence Intervention Program ( front page of the Winnipeg Free Press today. Congratulations to Dr. Carolyn Snider and her team, including Heather Tiede, Billy Dubery, Nathan Thomas, Curly Mousseau, Heather Woodward, Dale Goulet and John Armstrong!

It should be noted that many GAIN members were and are involved in this new program.


Original FREE PRESS article here…

KEN GIGLIOTTI / WINNIPEG FREE PRESSThe Health Sciences Centre team includes Billy Dubery (from left), Nathan Thomas, Dr. Carolyn Snider, Curly Mousseau, Heather Woodward and Dale Goulet. Missing: John Armstrong

Stomping out youth violence

Health Sciences Centre ER launches unique program

By Larry Kusch

An HSC emergency room physician has convinced a national funding agency Winnipeg’s skyhigh rate of violence to youth should be viewed as a public health concern.

Dr. Carolyn Snider is leading a team that will begin approaching injured youth — while they’re at the trauma hospital’s adult or children’s emergency departments — to offer counselling.

Snider has received close to $900,000 from the Canadian Institute for Health Research for a two-year pilot project that will determine the value of a hospital- intervention approach based, in part, on programs in San Francisco, Oakland, Calif., and Philadelphia.

At the same time, she and her team will conduct research to determine the cost benefit of instituting a permanent program at the hospital, which could cost about $500,000 a year. The expectation is it could save society a substantial amount of money — not to mention the physical and emotional pain for the victims and their families.

Snider, who came to Winnipeg two years ago after working in a downtown Toronto emergency department, said the extent of youth violence in Winnipeg is “overwhelming at times.”

“It’s, sadly, the perfect place to do this research,” she said Monday.

Snider’s team includes five specially trained youth counsellors — adults who either experienced violence as youths or whose family was directly affected by it — a social worker and possibly mental-health and addictions workers.

A counsellor will be called to the ER when a young person seeks treatment. Young people willing to participate in the pilot project will be paired for up to a year with a counsellor, who will help them with life-skills training, identify community supports and steer them to partnering agencies for help.

TheEmergencyDepartmentViolence Intervention Program (EDVIP) will target youths aged 14 to 24. Many of the young people who wind up in ERs due to violence suffer from anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, Snider noted. Many are impoverished, lack adequate housing “and a sense of belonging.”

Not all are gang members, Snider said. The youths she treats for violent injuries represent a broad spectrum of high-risk youth.

Liz Wolff, a program manager and clinician at New Directions, said framing the problem of chronic youth violence as a health concern is “brilliant.”

“I think what (Snider is) doing is important in our community, and I think there will be huge benefit to individuals who experience violence,” said Wolff, who works with troubled youth, including gang members.

Snider, who also teaches at the U of M and conducts research with the Manitoba Institute of Child Health, said she’s gratified the national funder accepted the premise that youth violence is a national health concern.

She said the institute consulted various social agencies in drafting its successful proposal. Her project competed for funds with far more traditional health projects, such as heart research.

Assuming the pilot project produces positive results, Snider will apply to the same national institute to fund a full HSC program for five years. After that, it’s hoped government will see the benefits of picking up the tab.



“We are tired of watching our children be killed, abused and left for the streets to decide their futures”

FRIDAY, APRIL 12th, 2013 WINNIPEG MANITOBA– This Tuesday will be the second city wide gang forum hosted by Winnipeg’s Gang Action Inter-Agency Network, a group of dedicated agencies working together to solve Winnipeg’s gang problem. The forum is based on a year of research and data collection on different gang strategies, gang exit strategies, youth consultation and key stakeholder interviews. GAIN will be highlighting three key aspects of a gang exit strategy and working to develop a strong action plan.


“It’s insane that in a city like Winnipeg, with a gang problem like we have, that there is no strategy for getting kids out of a gang,” says Jamil Mahmood, GAIN co-chair. “We are tired of watching our children be killed, abused and left for the streets to decide their futures. We need to step up and develop a gang exit strategy and a city wide comprehensive gang strategy before we lose any more of our children.”


WHO/WHAT: The forum will be a one day working session where groups will be prioritizing the areas of focus for the year, and creating concrete action plans. Keynote presentation to be done by the Minister of Children and Youth Opportunities, Hon. Kevin Chief and Winnipeg Police Constable Danny Smyth.


WHERE: University of Winnipeg Convocation Hall


WHEN: Tuesday April 16th, 2013



Keynotes and Research to be presented: 8:50-9:45 a.m.

Interviews available: 9:45-10:15 a.m.

Jamil Mahmood- Executive Director, Spence Neighbourhood Association

Tammy Christensen- Executive Director, Ndinawemaaganag Endaawaad Inc.

Floyd Wiebe- Gang Awareness Parents

Matt Fast- GAIN Researcher, Gang Action Interagency Network


GAIN would also like to share the youth consultation video developed to be shown to groups of youth in order to engage them in presenting solutions to gang issues that are tangible to young people living in unsafe situations. The information gathered from these youth consultations will then be analyzed and become part of the overall strategy to end gang violence in Winnipeg. The youth in the video are not actors and they were not scripted in anyway.


Please use this link to access the video:


For more information or interviews, please contact GAIN Co-chairs:

Jamil Mahmood, 204-783-8607 or 204-803-7808 e.

Tammy Christensen, 204-586-2588 e.

Taking the Next Step: A Gang Strategy – Sept. 8, 2012

Taking the Next Step: A Gang Strategy – Sept. 8, 2012

Please click: GAINeventinfo



Sept 7 & 8, 2011 – Community Mobilization Against Gangs

This is not a GAIN event…
This event is hosted by the Old St-Boniface Residents’ Association

They have extended the Early Bird Registration to Aug 19th.
The “Professional Stream” with Dr. Mark Totten are “Fee Based” and directed to agencies.
Dr. Totten’s sessions are designed for professionals including law enforcement, psychologists, sociologists, correctional officers, probation officers, CFS, social workers, healthcare professionals, educators, principals and superintendents involved in case planning and case management systems for youth involved in the corrections system and/or at risk youth. Participants will understand integrated, multi-dimensional case planning and case management models. You will begin to form regional working groups to continue collaboration and build a longer-term, province-wide strategy.
The “Parent/Community Stream” with Richard Ramos has been sponsored and therefore “FREE”.
“Richard Ramos session is designed specifically for Parents and their communities. Participants will learn to develop the right program for your community and will develop parenting skills you did not know you had.”
The website is:

They have extended the early-bird rate until August 19th


Winnipeg gets federal anti-crime funding

CBC News Posted: Aug 3, 2011 8:44 PM CT 

The federal government is providing nearly $1 million to anti-crime projects in Winnipeg, Minister of Public Safety Vic Toews announced Wednesday.

Among the projects receiving funding is Turning the Tides — a program designed to prevent at-risk youth in Winnipeg from joining youth gangs.

“Through programs like these, at-risk youth are learning life skills that help them make smart choices, and avoid gangs and a life of crime,” Toews said after touring the site.

“We are delivering on our promise to support families and communities by helping youth stay away from crime and gangs, and out of the justice system.”

Toews said Ottawa would provide $928,000 through the $7.5 million Youth Gang Prevention Fund for five projects in Winnipeg, which he said “further demonstrates the government’s commitment to preventing crime and making Canadian streets safe.”

The projects, all in Winnipeg, receiving funding for a year are:

  • Just TV pilot program, Broadway Neighbourhood Centre, $157,487.60.
  • Project O.A.S.I.S., new directions for children, youth, adults and families, $168,225.58.
  • West Central Youth Outreach Project, Spence Neighbourhood Association, $190,006.12.
  • Circle of Courage, Ka Ni Kanichihk Inc., $182,670.28.
  • Turning the Tides, Ndinawemaaganag Endaawaad Inc., $229,961.89.

The Government of Manitoba is also providing funding for the Just TV pilot program, Project O.A.S.I.S., Circle of Courage and Turning the Tides.

“Preventing crime and making our neighbourhoods safer takes a co-ordinated approach between governments, police and community agencies,” provincial Justice Minister Andrew Swan said.

“These programs complement our efforts to deal strongly with those who break the law by providing youth with structured programming, connections to caring and trained staff and guidance and support to help them choose to avoid a life of crime.”