“After taking hundreds of crisis calls from survivors of domestic violence, I realized that I always asked the questions, “Have you thought of leaving?” “Did you call the police?”
“Why did my solutions assume that leaving was the only option?
“Why did they assume that the best way to achieve safety was to call the police?”
“Why weren’t there any other options?”
Mimi Kim, the founder of Creative Interventions, asked these urgent questions. Through her years of work in domestic violence and sexual assault, Mimi came to realize the limitations of the narrow options offered to those seeking solutions to violence.
Mimi witnessed how many survivors in her own community refused the very options she offered. She saw how many people wanted to stop the violence but did not know how or where to start.
Why wasn’t there a space for the people closest to and most impacted by violence to envision and create ways to make it stop? Why weren’t violence intervention resources offering education, skills and support useful to everyday people wanting to stop violence among those they care about? Why did community education teach how to recognize intimate forms of violence but not how to stop it?
Creative Interventions was founded to shift education and resources back to families and communities. Established in 2004, the project aimed to place knowledge and power among those most impacted by violence. Creative Interventions sought to make support and safety more accessible, stop violence at early stages of abuse, and create possibilities for once abusive individuals and communities to evolve towards healthy change and transformation.
More about the
Founder, Mimi Kim
COMMUNITY CAPACITY BUILDING
In response to the ongoing need for capacity building in the areas of community accountability and transformative justice, Creative Interventions continues to produce knowledge, offer trainings, and support organizing – locally, nationally and globally. Efforts focus on seedling and small sprouts initiatives in grassroots communities of color – and – society-wide transformations in safety from law enforcement to communities of care.
Look out for:
- Translation of toolkit to Spanish (available) (French and German now being translated – thank you to global volunteers)
- Creative Interventions Workbook (beta soon available)
StoryTelling & Organizing Project (STOP)
The StoryTelling & Organizing Project (STOP) was created to collect and share stories about everyday people taking action to end interpersonal violence.
While many of us support the idea of community-based responses to violence, some of us have difficulty even imagining what this could look like. What we found is that people have many stories about things they did to stop violence. Some are small things, some spontaneous, and some are big or involve lots of planning and lots of people.
In 2021, Creative Interventions will re-launch the StoryTelling & Organizing Project with Chicago and NYC-based collaborators. Be on the lookout for more information.
Phase 1: Project Development (2004 – 2006)
A group of organizers working in the Bay Area connected with organizations working nationally and internationally to share common visions, gather existing tools, and begin to construct what would develop into a CI approach to community-based interventions. Intervention Team partners listed below and Generation Five were particularly active in this Project Development phase.
During this time, Creative Interventions developed the StoryTelling & Organizing Project (STOP) and began collecting stories from everyday people who had organized in their own unique and creative ways to confront and end interpersonal violence.
Phase 2: COMMUNITY-BASED INTERVENTIONS PROJECT (2006 – 2010)
- CI staff members (Rachel Herzing and Mimi Kim)
- Asian Women’s Shelter (Orchid Pusey)
- Shimtuh (Isabel Kang)
- Narika (Sutapa Balaji)
- La Clinica de la Raza (Juan Cuba)
- Violence intervention consultant (Leo Bruenn)
- CI national advisory board member (Poroshat Shekarloo)
Together the team supported 25 interventions to violence, meeting with over 100 people. Through this pilot, the team developed a model, tools and analysis regarding community-based interventions to violence, facilitation, and community team-building to support interventions.
STORYTELLING & ORGANIZING PROJECT (STOP)
During this time, Creative Interventions developed the StoryTelling & Organizing Project (STOP) started during Phase 1. Primary team members consisted of:
- CI staff members (Rachel Herzing and Isaac Ontiveros)
Phase 3: Toolkit Construction (2010 – 2012)
During this period, Creative Interventions gathered the information created during the pilot project to construct a comprehensive Toolkit for anyone interested in carrying out a community-based intervention to violence.
The Toolkit contains a basic model for violence intervention, useful information, worksheets, and stories based upon the experiences of Creative Interventions during its development and pilot stages.
A 600 page draft version went out in November of 2012.
A final web version of Creative Interventions Toolkit: A Practical Guide to Stop Interpersonal Violence was made available in 2020<
Phase 4: Build Community Capacity (Current)
Creative Interventions continues to work with other individuals and organizations across the country. We have combined our resources and energies to build local capacity for community-based interventions, community accountability, and transformative justice.
We have heard from people around the world using the CI Toolkit and other resources to use in response to violence. Informally, we have been sharing successes and challenges. With the turn towards community accountability and transformative justice, we continue to evolve to meet the needs of our most impacted communities.
In 2020, we released a newly designed version of the Creative Interventions Toolkit, and in 2020, we released a Spanish translation.
We will continue to create tools and stories to support community accountability and transformative justice.