School and Youth Violence Prevention

group of diverse youth

Community-based research involves a collaborative effort between our researchers and partners and provides positive social change. Our work influences policy and practice relative to a particular community and the issue for which they are seeking our support and expertise. We serve as a research partner and provide technical assistance to many schools and community organizations to help them identify where they need the help and if a particular program or service to successful for students/clients.

Project Prevent Evaluation

October 2019 - present

Project Prevent is a five year, 5 million dollar federal grant. This was one of fourteen awarded the grant nationally. The Project Prevent grant addresses pervasive Violence, Trauma, Anxiety, and other mental health needs among our youth. The Educational Services Center of Cuyahoga County will continue the work begun through the Project AWARE grant to address the gaps in these focus areas in continued collaboration with the county and local youth-serving systems and client districts. Implementation of tiered interventions (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) which include interconnected systems work to provide early and appropriate services for all youth, including multi-system involved, will be evaluated by the Begun Center.

Funder: Department of Education

Partners: Educational Services Center of Cuyahoga County

Research Team: Michelle L. Riske-Morris (Principal Investigator), Katherine Lewis

Ohio Healthy Transitions

October 2018 - present

The Begun Center will provide evaluation services for a five-year award supporting transitional age youth with a serious emotional disturbance, a serious mental illness, or a co-occurring intellectual developmental disability in Cuyahoga and Lorain Counties.

Funder: SAMHSA Center for Substance Abuse Prevention

Partners: Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, Wingspan Care Group

Research Team: Chris Stormann (Principal Investigator), Tiffany M. Walker, Khyati Patel

Cuyahoga County Family and Children First Council

August 2016 - present

The Begun Center serves as a research and evaluation partner to the Cuyahoga County Family and Children First Council to evaluate various programs for youth related outcomes.

Funder: Cuyahoga County

Research Team: Chris Stormann (Principal Investigator), Tiffany M. WalkerKhyati Patel

Learn about our work with Family and Children First Council.

MyCOM Initiative

August 2008 - present

The Begun Center continues to serve as research and evaluation partner for the My Commitment / My Community (MyCom) Initiative. For the past 14 years, we have evaluated MyCom’s efforts to bring together a network of neighborhood-based youth serving agencies that provide out-of-school time programs, youth employment, neighborhood mobilizations, transitions, and advocacy - bringing Cuyahoga County youth positive experiences to reach their potential and contribute to their communities to ensure that Cleveland youth are making productive use of their time, graduating from high school, prepared for college and the workforce, connected to caring adults and navigating developmental transitions. 

Funder: Cleveland Foundation

Partners: MyCom, Starting Point, Youth Opportunities Unlimited, Thornton-Buckeye Group

Research Team:  Daniel J. Flannery, Mark S. Fleisher, Rodney Thomas, Chase Klingenstein

Read about MyCom.

Prior Work

Project AWARE

November 2016 - September 2019

The Begun Center served as the local evaluator for the Educational Service Center for Cuyahoga County’s (ESC/CC) Project AWARE. The goal of Ohio’s Project AWARE is to raise awareness of behavioral health issues among school-aged youth; provide training to detect and respond to mental health challenges and crisis in children and young adults; and to increase access to behavioral health supports for children, youth and families. ESC/CC is one of the three local educational authorities for the project. As the local evaluator The Begun Center was hired in Year 3 to provide an assessment of ESC/CC’s progress in meeting its goals and objectives as set forth in its Coordination and Integration Plan.

Funder: SAMHSA

Partners: Education Service Center of Cuyahoga County

Learn more about Project AWARE Ohio

Cuyahoga County Defending Childhood Initiative

November 2011 - June 2018

The Begun Center served as the evaluation partner for the Cuyahoga County Defending Childhood Initiative (DCI). Evaluation activities included identification of appropriate assessment instruments, analysis of screening and pre/post test data for youth receiving trauma-informed care, evaluation of training sessions held for the child-serving agencies in the area, and possible assessment of the effectiveness of a community awareness campaign.

Ohio Safe Schools/Healthy Students Initiative

July 2017 - September 2018

The Begun Center serves as a research and evaluation partner to the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services for their SAMHSA funded Safe Schools Health Students (SSHS).

Funder: SAMHSA

Partners: Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services

Visit to learn more about the federal SSHS initiative

Stark County High Fidelity Wraparound

July 2018 - June 2021

The Begun Center provided evaluation services for the HRSA (Health Resources and Services Administration) funded Project IMPACCT, serving children and youth with epilepsy. This young population are at increased risk of being bullied, having depression and anxiety, and suicide. 

Cuyahoga County Wraparound / Tapestry System of Care

The Begun Center served as a research and evaluation partner to the Cuyahoga County Department of Children and Family Services to evaluate the effectiveness of Tapestry System of Care.

Learn more about our work with the Cuyahoga County Wraparound / Tapestry System of Care.