Youth violence, which occurs between individuals aged 10 to 29, can take many forms and has health, social, and economic consequences for individuals, families and communities (World Health Organisation, 2015). The What Works to Prevent Youth Violence (WWPYV) report was undertaken to draw together high quality international evidence about what works to prevent youth violence and is intended to inform policymakers and practitioners about the extant evidence base and effectiveness associated with different approaches and interventions.

Some of the key findings of the WWPYV report are useful to practitioners working within the field of community safety. These include the following:

  • There is evidence to suggest that school and education-based approaches are effective in reducing youth violence. These include both bullying prevention programmes (e.g. Olweus Bullying Prevention Program, KiVa) and social and emotional learning programmes (e.g. PATHS).
  • Interventions that have been identified as promising include: school based programmes which seek to prevent violence in dating and intimate partner relationships, parenting and family-focused approaches, mentoring programmes, and community-based coalitions.
  • There is mixed evidence about the effectiveness of out-of-school activities and early childhood home visitation programmes.
  • Deterrence and fear-based approaches have been identified as having no effect on youth violence outcomes and, at worse, are potentially harmful to young people.

Download the Briefing Paper in full below: