Positive Community - Police Engagement Report

Exploring the role of police Foundations in Supporting Community - Police Initiatives

Building relationships and connecting communities

With the support of Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Foundation, IDEA Analytics reached over 200 police foundations to learn more about their roles to support community-police initiatives. The responding 58 police foundations representing small, medium and large police departments shared current examples of constructive community-police engagement through youth, adult and police initiatives. This survey starts the conversation about what are promising practices to engage with communities and provide additional support and services.

Police foundations have been in operation for over 50 years to support relationship building and trust through social, educational and training programs.  As our communities today seek to repair and recover from negative interactions, police foundations may lean into what has worked or seek to develop new approaches to engage and build relationships.

Responding Police Foundations by Location

Map Note: Purple = large-sized police departments, Red = medium-sized police departments, yellow = small-sized police departments

Report Highlights

Number of Police Foundations Supporting Program Areas 

Police foundations provide programs and initiatives for youth, adult and police operations, with most foundations providing programs in all three categories.

  • 65% fund programs supporting essential needs for local youth and families (e.g., housing supplies, food, clothing) 
  • 62% support officer wellness programs, focused on de-escalation and resiliency training
  • 41% fund community-led safety/crime prevention programming
  • 80% of police foundations surveyed funded technology and equipment for departments, but only 14% supported weapon purchases.

We also identified areas needing improvement which opens the conversations to leading more productive community dialogue and future awareness, support, and expansion of police foundations across the nation.  We look forward to supporting foundations as they identify ways forward to connect communities and police together for positive outcomes.

IDEA Analytics greatly appreciates the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department Foundation for supporting this work,  Joan Brody for championing the project from conception to report, and Dr. T Bowman of The Bowman Group for his advisement and contributions throughout.