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New Jersey, through DOW, was one of six states selected to lead a national effort to shift the focus of the federal Rape Prevention & Education (RPE) grant funds from awareness-raising activities that reduce victimization to comprehensive primary prevention strategies that prevent perpetration.


This program is known as Empower - Enhancing and Making Programs and Outcomes Work to End Rape.


Key Players:

  • The Center for Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and Colorado, Kentucky, Massachusetts, North Carolina, North Dakota
  • NJ State Capacity Building Team (The Steering Committee)
  • NJ State Prevention Team (Prevention and Public Education Committee of the Governor’s Advisory Council Against Sexual Violence)


EMPOWER I (2005-2008)

The goal of EMPOWER I was to build New Jersey’s capacity to conduct comprehensive planning, implementation and evaluation of sexual violence prevention efforts.  It was the first time there was a concerted effort to look at ways to end sexual violence perpetration before it began rather than to solely focus on interventions for victimization.

The outcome was the creation of a NJ Sexual Violence Primary Prevention Plan.


EMPOWER II (2008-2012)

While continuing to build New Jersey's capacity to prevent sexual violence, EMPOWER II's activities focused on the following tasks: 

  • Implementation of sexual violence prevention system capacity goals and objectives identified in the Sexual Violence Primary Prevention Plan 
  • Implementation of State Plan prevention strategies by RPE funded sexual violence programs.
  • Development of an Evaluation Plan and process and evaluation tools
  • Capacity building of the state partners and local RPE funded Sexual Violence Programs to collect and utilize evaluation data  
  • Development of a sustainability plan
  • Support for evaluation capacity development of non-EMPOWER RPE states grantees by sharing lessons learned, processes and tools
Some Outcomes