Addressing violence: Project Ujima

What is Project Ujima?

Project Ujima is a community program that helps victims of violence and provides services at Children’s Wisconsin, your home, and the community.

Project Ujima works to stop the cycle of violence through crisis intervention and case management, social and emotional support, youth development and mentoring, mental health, and medical services.

Project Ujima is a voluntary program working with both youth and adult victims of violence and there is no cost for the services.

Those participating in the program are less likely to be re-victimized. Other successes include:

  • Better medical outcomes after injury
  • Increased confidence and self-esteem
  • Connection to peers and others who understand the effects of violence
  • Improved school, youth and family relationships

Key elements

Project Ujima

The people on our team can help in different ways. Here are 3 types of team members who can help.

Crime victim advocates

  • Meet with families after a violent incident to offer comfort, advocacy and support
  • Provides referrals and information to help with basic needs like housing, food, jobs, school, and other things a family may identify
  • Gives guidance on victims’ rights and information about financial support for victims

Nurse & care coordinator

  • Connect with families to help them understand a physical injury and navigate needs based on that injury
  • Helps Coordinate needed follow-up care
  • Provides ongoing support and education for ongoing physical health care needs
  • Helps to find a medical home or primary care provider

Mental health coordinator & therapist

  • Work as a team to help meet individual and family mental health needs
  • Provide crisis support and intervention services to help with new mental health needs
  • Help to find and set-up long-term mental health care

Services for youth crime victims

2020 camp family photo

Project Ujima provides support services to youth victims of community violence including those victims of:

  • Gunshot wounds
  • Stab wounds
  • Physical assaults

Project Ujima supports youth victims and their families with:

  • Physical health care coordination
  • Hospital-based bedside crisis intervention
  • School and court advocacy
  • Safety planning & goal setting
  • Basic needs resources and referrals
  • Long-term mental health care coordination
  • Youth development & programming activities

The average child is involved with Project Ujima for 15 months. In that time, they build self-esteem and social skills through many positive experiences, including mentoring, support groups, summer camp and more.

Services for adult crime victims

Project Ujima also provides support services to adult victims of community violence including those victims of:

  • Property crime
  • Burglary and robbery
  • Domestic/Intimate partner violence
  • Physical assault
  • Rape/sexual assault
  • Homicide (surviving family members)

Project Ujima supports adult victims of crime with:

  • Home visits with a crime victim advocate
  • Assistance with crime victim compensation
  • Court advocacy and safety planning
  • Emergency assistance and property repairs
  • Basic needs resources and referrals
  • Long-term mental health care coordination
  • Family enrichment activities

Project Ujima provides a support group for adults who have lost a loved one to homicide. When a person loses a loved one to homicide, many questions arise. Project Ujima works with participants to understand the grieving process, identify resources and provide support to family members along their healing journey.

Youth development and family enrichment activities

fishing camp 2023

Project Ujima works to help children and their families to build relationships with others who have had similar experiences and understand the challenges and effects of trauma related to community violence. Participants can engage in programs that development prevention and intervention strategies and support youth and families on their healing journey.

Project Ujima aims to build:

  • Confidence
  • Self-esteem
  • Safety planning
  • Coping strategies
  • Peer to peer support
  • Re-injury support

 Programs include:

  • Youth mentoring/life skills groups (12+ y/o)
  • Support groups for adults and children
  • Summer day camp (8-17 y/o)
  • Family enrichment activities and events

Participants who exhibit strong leadership qualities can join the Milwaukee Leaders in Action (MLA) which provides an opportunity for youth to share their voice and experience with the programming including but not limited to the following:

  • Panel guest presentations
  • Community outreach and engagement opportunities
  • Program development and quality improvement
  • Leadership skills development


Children’s Wisconsin’s emergency room is staffed by physicians from the Medical College of Wisconsin’s Department of Pediatrics, who provide treatment to hundreds of children every year for injuries caused by violence. Behavioral health and social work staff coordinate family and youth psychosocial screenings and services. The Medical College provides leadership and expertise by conducting research projects to determine the project’s impact on its clients.

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Contact us

Get information about violence prevention.

(414) 266-2557

Featured video

Learn how Project Ujima helped Jackie and her family get back on their feet after a violent crime nearly killed her son.

From pain to peace


Melissa will never forget the night she learned her daughter was the victim of violence. But then our Project Ujima team helped her family move from pain to peace.