The Strategic Planning Tool (SPT) is an electronic tool to assist communities in assessing their gang problems and planning strategies to deal with those problems. The tool has four interrelated components that include risk factors, planning for implementation, program matrix, and the community resource inventory. The first three components provide users with a broad array of knowledge about gang behavior, strategies, best practices, and research-based programs. The fourth component, the community resource inventory, is a database that allows users to capture and categorize local resource information for local action.
- The Risk Factors component provides users with a description of research-based risk factors for delinquency by age (developmental) periods and risk factors that are correlated to gang behavior are annotated. SPT users will find empirical indicators of individual risk factors and potential data sources for community-level measurement of risk factor prevalence. Also available are links to program descriptions within the SPT, indexed by age level, which correspond to individual risk factors allowing users to search for relevant research-based programs.
- The Planning and Implementation component permits users to access a database containing descriptions of numerous gang prevention, intervention, and suppression programs, program strategies, and best practices to address delinquency and gang behavior. The information contained is indexed by age levels and allows users to compare local data with available information to identify potential strategies and practices, or to address program service gaps in their planning efforts.
- The Program Matrix includes descriptions of each program in the database, which are listed alphabetically in the matrix. The matrix allows users to view the age range of clients served by each program. A unique function is the ability for users to sort programs of interest for further review.
- The Community Resource Inventory allows users to record and categorize information about their community organizations, programs, services, and activities into an online database. This information can be searched and viewed as a matrix of available community resources to identify gaps in service areas. Requests for accounts can be made using the online account request form. There is no cost to establish an account. Requests for technical assistance can be made through the National Gang Center via the contact page.