Community Safety

Increase the livability, affordability and safety of Greater Boston neighborhoods

Vibrant neighborhood  photo Background

Researchers from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government published stunning statistics which showed that from 2006 to 2009, 39 percent of all of Boston’s homicides and 52 percent of all fatal shootings took place within a small (3.42 square mile) area—neighborhoods that also have high rates of poverty and disinvestment.  In response, the Boston Foundation created StreetSafe Boston, a five-year, $18 million special initiative focusing on the geographical area identified by the study.


StreetSafe Boston represents a unique model approach to curbing youth violence and helping young people—a model that is being studied by cities across the United States and around the world.  StreetSafe trains and deploys streetworkers who are committed to developing direct, constant connections with proven-risk young people.  Once a streetworker gains a youth’s trust, he connects him or her with other StreetSafe staff members who can help to provide everything from education to housing to health care and job training.

Desired Outcomes

StreetSafe Boston’s goals are specific and measurable.  The initiative seeks to decrease gang-involved shootings by 60% in the five neighborhoods where most shootings take place—and decrease youth homicides by 30% in those neighborhoods.  In addition, the goal is to build relationships with youth on the street and link them to life-supporting services.

Also See...

Latest News

Boston Foundation report finds uneven progress on CORI Reform Implementation
Date: May 24, 2012
Massachusetts’ groundbreaking 2010 law to reform the state’s criminal background information system has met with mixed success in the first phase of its implementation, according to a new report commissioned by the Boston Foundation.
Boston Foundation announces $160,000 in planning grants for Health Starts at Home initiative
Date: June 08, 2015
The Boston Foundation has announced planning grants of $40,000 each to four health and housing coalitions that seek to improve children’s health and housing stability, while decreasing costs associated with homelessness, rehousing, and healthcare.


The Permanent Fund for Boston Longley-Elisio-photo

At the heart of everything the Boston Foundation has done over the last century—every grant it has made, every innovation it has supported, every cause it has championed—is its endowment, the Permanent Fund for Boston.  Established through bequests left by hundreds of visionary and forward-thinking Bostonians since 1917, this essential fund fuels all of the Foundation’s work and provides the resources that have sparked positive change and enabled new ideas.

The Civic Leadership Fund Female student portrait photo The Civic Leadership Fund supports the Foundation’s role as a civic hub where information, knowledge, resources and influence come together for the greater good of our region.  This crucial fund helps us tackle some of our region’s most serious challenges through a wide range of activities.